Nothing Ear review: a solid pair of stylish wireless earbuds

The Nothing Ear wireless earbuds pack style and function into a neat little package

The Nothing Ear wireless earbuds in black on a grey background
(Image credit: Sam Cross)
T3 Verdict

If you're on the hunt for a new pair of wireless earbuds which don't break the bank, the Nothing Ear is a great pick. Packed with cool features and a sumptuous design, this will be a great addition to any audio setup.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Sleek design

  • +

    Great app with new EQ

  • +

    Comfortable fit

  • +

    Good ANC

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Not a massive step from the Ear (2)

  • -

    ANC isn't the best we've tried

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If you're on the hunt for a pair of the best wireless earbuds on the market, you're probably quite confused by the sheer volume of models out there. Top models can cost hundreds of pounds, with differences sometimes negligible between different variants.

If you want a great pair of earbuds on a budget, we've long been a fan of the Nothing Ear (2). Those offered great value for money, fusing top sound quality and a great design, without breaking the bank.

Now, we have their successor – the Nothing Ear. Despite a slightly confusing naming convention – these follow on from the Nothing Ear (1) and Ear (2), but aren't the Ear (3) – these look set to be a top pair of buds. Let's dive in and take a closer look.

The Nothing Ear wireless earbuds in black on a grey background

(Image credit: Sam Cross)

Nothing Ear review: Price and Release Date

The Nothing Ear wireless earbuds were released on the 18th of April 2024. That took place as part of a Community Update from the brand, live from Tokyo, Japan.

The Nothing Ear retails for £129 / $149.

The Nothing Ear wireless earbuds in black on a grey background

(Image credit: Sam Cross)

Nothing Ear review: Design and What's New?

Fans of the brand will feel right at home with the design of the Nothing Ear. There's almost no deviation from form here, with the signature Nothing design language seen across the board.

In fact, when placed side by side with my Nothing Ear (2) unit, there is almost nothing to separate the two. The new case is very slightly taller, while there is a slightly nicer soft touch plastic inside.

The buds themselves are almost identical, too. Sure, there's 0.1mm shaved off here and there, but it's negligible when you're holding the device itself. Inside, the driver is marginally smaller, with some added software specs too.

Okay, so are these broadly just the same earbuds? Not quite.

Notably, there is better water and dust resistance on the new models. The buds retain the IP54 rating, but the case also features an IP55 rating. That's a significant change, and should make these earbuds much more robust.

There's also a new Bass Enhance feature. That's a global setting, which actively boosts low end frequencies to increase clarity.

It's not the only bit of shiny newness in the app. Users can also utilise a new Advanced Equaliser, giving them more granular control via an eight-band EQ. That's complete with adjustable frequency range and Q factor, for total control over the audio.

The Nothing Ear wireless earbuds in black on a grey background

(Image credit: Sam Cross)

Nothing Ear review: Performance

Okay, so let's get into the important stuff. First things first – audio quality. Things are strong here, with a clear and consistent quality. With such a powerful EQ behind it, shaping the audio to your own preference really shouldn't be too troublesome.

That Bass Enhance does make a noticeable difference here. It's like a warm blanket, adding low end into the mix. Essentially, it does so without introducing muddiness. That's a really big deal, offering a wealth of added clarity, without messing with the sonic quality.

Battery life is also said to have improved here. That was 4 hours with ANC or 6.3 hours without ANC on the Ear (2). Here, 5.3 hours can be expected with ANC, while 8.5 hours is possible without the ANC engaged. I haven't had a chance to test that thoroughly in my short time with these buds, but I've seen no reason to doubt them either.

Perhaps the most disappointing part of the audio quality is just how similar it is to its predecessor. I put the two side-by-side and the results are almost entirely identical. Sure, you can do a little more in the EQ with this one, but that's about it.

That's not a dreadful thing. The Ear (2) was renowned for its audio quality, and these are equally impressive. The issue is that there just isn't enough progression to really differentiate these two. That's a bit of a shame.

The ANC is pretty good here, though. Sure, they aren't the best noise cancelling earbuds we've tested, but it'll do a decent enough job of keeping a lot of the outside world at bay.

The Nothing Ear wireless earbuds in black on a grey background

(Image credit: Sam Cross)

Nothing Ear review: Verdict

In short, if you're on the hunt for a new pair of earbuds but don't want to break the bank, these are certainly worth a look. They sound good, the ANC is passable and the app remains one of the best there is.

On top of that, the additional EQ controls make these a top pick for audiophiles. You'll have a chance to really tweak the sound to your liking, which is just perfect for those kinds of users.

The Nothing Ear wireless earbuds in black on a grey background

(Image credit: Sam Cross)

Nothing Ear review: Also Consider

If you're happy with an older product, the Nothing Ear (2) is still a worthy pickup. Those have the same RRP as the Nothing Ear, but should be available for less in the coming months.

Alternatively, have a look at the Sony WF-C700N. Those are a great pair of buds from a well-regarded brand, which offer solid competition here.

Sam Cross
Staff Writer

Online news writer at, Sam has five years of experience in online and print journalism, with work featured in publications like Metro and Last Word on Sports. After years writing about music and football, Sam now turns his hand to bringing you news about new phones, smart home products, smart watches, laptops and TVs. Sam is a longtime fan and user of Apple products, including iPhones, MacBooks and Apple Watches.He’s also T3’s resident football expert, bringing you everything you need to know about the big games, including how to watch them. In his spare time, Sam is a keen guitarist, watch lover and (very) amateur golfer.