This Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro review is the right place to be if you’re on the hunt for a pair of stylish true wireless earbuds with superb sound.
At a Samsung Galaxy Unpacked event in August 2022, the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro wireless earbuds were launched alongside the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4, the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 and the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5.
Straight off the bat, I can tell you that the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro are some of the best true wireless earbuds for anyone who owns one of the best Samsung phones. A few features are exclusive to Galaxy devices including Samsung’s Seamless Hi-Fi Codec for 24-bit audio, 360-degree audio and automatic device switching, but that's not all they have to offer. Read on to find out what makes these ANC buds so good...
Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro review: price and what’s new
Available to buy from the 26th August 2022, the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro will set you back $229 in the US, £219 in the UK and AU$349 in Australia. Take a look at our Samsung discount codes for ways to lower the cost.
Released in early 2021, the Galaxy Buds Pro were Samsung’s answer to the Apple AirPods Pro, and the second generation brings them even further up to speed. In a few regions, you’ll have to pay more for them at launch than you would have done last time around but in most places they cost the same amount.
So what’s changed? To cut a long story short, the design has been refreshed, the noise cancelling has been upgraded and you get the latest version of Bluetooth packed in as well as a few new features here and there.
Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro review: design and fit
The first thing to say about the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro is that they’re undeniably the tech giant's best-looking true wireless earbuds yet. Not everyone will go for the grape-shaped design but those who do will absolutely love it.
You can buy them in three colours, Graphite, Bora Purple or White, which can easily be matched to your other Galaxy tech. What I really like about these is that the colour is all-encompassing, it covers the entire case and the whole earbud, even the silicone ear tip. The matte coating gives them a sophisticated edge, although admittedly I did notice that it picked up marks quite easily, especially after I put the matching case in my bag.
Measuring 50.1 x 50.2 x 27.7mm, the charging case fits in the palm of my hand and was the perfect size for my pocket, something that I value a lot when I’m out and about.
When it comes to comfort, the earbuds themselves are relatively lightweight at 5.5g each, even if they’re not the lightest you can buy. To find the right fit, you get three sizes of silicone ear tips to choose from. My only issue with those was that when I pulled the buds out of my ears, the tips pulled themselves inside out which made me worry that you could quite easily lose one.
The rounded bud sits firmly in your ear, it’s just a case of putting it in and twisting it into position, which I found kept them nice and secure. I used these earphones for short journeys, workouts and entire afternoons of music. While they were comfortable for the most part, I did grow tired of wearing them after a while but I can’t fault how well they stayed in place even when I was moving around a lot.
Thanks to an IPX7 rating, you won’t need to worry about sudden rainfall or accidents with puddles either because the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro are fully waterproof.
Touch controls on the outside of each bud let you pause or play the song, skip forwards or backwards through tracks and switch between noise cancelling modes, you’ll also be able to use them to manage your calls. If you want, you can choose to change the press and hold function to adjust the volume, call your voice assistant or open up Spotify instead.
When you set the earbuds up for the first time, you do have to toggle on some of the controls in the Galaxy Wearables smartphone app before they’ll work. Once I switched them on, I found they could be very sensitive which meant I sometimes paused the music accidentally, and I also hung up on a phone call or two without meaning to.
You’ll get about 5 hours of listening time from the earbuds with ANC switched on, and that goes up to 8 hours if you turn it off.
With the charging case, that gives you about 18 hours of music in total with noise cancelling or 29 hours without. That’s perfectly fine but it is a long way off the longest-lasting true wireless earbuds, some of which can give you a massive 48 hours of use.
If you were to get caught short then a quick 5-minute charge will give you an hour of playtime. These do also support wireless charging for fuss-free juice.
Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro review: performance and features
What really matters about a pair of true wireless earbuds is the sound quality, and the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro absolutely nail that.
Over the time I was testing them, I listened to everything from rock music and RnB to classical tracks and DnB, as well as a few podcasts, and I even used them to watch some videos. I was very pleasantly surprised by how well these handled it all.
The audio is fun and energetic yet detailed and serious. The soundstage is expansive, giving plenty of room for every element to push through with force but without being overwhelming. Every twang of a guitar and every murmur of a backing vocal is clear and so you can really appreciate the depth of a track with these buds.
Thanks to 360-degree audio and head-tracking spacial audio, you feel completely swept up in the sound which not only makes you feel like you're in the same room as the musicians but also makes these a good choice for streaming video content.
Listening to tracks through a Samsung Galaxy phone was noticeably better than on any other Android device, that’s down to Samsung’s Seamless Hi-Fi Codec which gives you scaled-up 24-bit audio. It delivers a much more assertive, vibrant sound than you get on another type of phone.
Giving you some level of control over the sound are six preset equaliser settings including Normal, Bass Boost, Soft, Dynamic, Clear and Treble Boost. Unlike elsewhere, you don’t get detailed manual controls which audiophiles will be disappointed by.
One other quite minor issue I found with the sound was when I listened to these earbuds lying on my side, the audio sometimes suffered from interference and even got cut off. It's not the end of the world but it was an annoyance worth mentioning.
To keep your focus on the music and block out distracting noise from your environment, the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro come with active noise cancellation. I wasn’t completely blown away by the results but it does the job well enough to dull the sound of the TV in the other room, the sound of traffic passing by or annoying train chatter.
If you do want to hear what’s going on around you, you can also switch to the Ambient Sound mode which lets some noise in so you’re more likely to hear announcements on public transport and things like that. I wasn’t so convinced by that as I still struggled to hear anything clearly above the music.
You can use the touch controls to switch ANC on, or you can do it through the app.
To make the most out of everything these earbuds have to offer, you'll need to use the Samsung wearable app. You’ll need to give the app permission to access all sorts on your phone including your contacts and notifications which not everyone will feel comfortable with but you will see the benefits day-to-day.
Using the app for the first time, you should start with the earbud fit test. It'll only run for a second or two and once finished, it will let you know if the earbuds fit you properly, prompting you to adjust them or change the silicone ear tip.
Another very handy feature is Voice Detect which quietens the music when the buds pick up the fact that you’re talking. Other headphones should take note of that because it allows you to have a conversation without needing to reach for your phone or the touch controls, something that I've found to be a pain in the past.
When it comes to connectivity, you get the latest Bluetooth 5.3 here. As soon as you take them out of the case, they’ll be immediately recognised by Galaxy phones nearby which makes getting them set up seriously easy.
You’ll also be able to automatically switch the audio between Galaxy phones, laptops, tablets and even a Samsung TV. The devices will automatically detect activity and move the sound between them, so for example, if you’re listening to music on your Galaxy Tab and you get a phone call, you won’t need to disconnect and reconnect them.
Call quality is very reliable here too, as long as you don’t accidentally hang up using the touch controls. My voice came across loud and clear without too much distraction from what was going on around me.
Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro review: verdict
Well worth the price tag attached to them, the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro are an excellent pair of true wireless earbuds with both style and substance. Not only do they look lovely but the sound quality rivals top-tier equivalents from Apple and Sony.
Something that could sway you into buying them is the huge array of extra features that you will actually make use of including noise cancellation, voice detection, automatic device switching and Samsung's Seamless Hi-Fi Codec which gives you incredible 24-bit audio.
For Samsung Galaxy users, these buds are a no-brainer, but if you don't use one of their smartphones then you would miss out on quite a lot of those features and so you might be better off looking elsewhere.
Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro review: also consider
If you’re an Android user but you don’t have a Galaxy smartphone, then you should consider the Sony WF-1000XM4 instead. T3’s top pick when it comes to wireless earbuds, they cost a similar amount of money, they’re packed full of handy features, they sound phenomenal and you get plenty of control over them through the adjoining smartphone app. Like these, they don’t give you tonnes of battery, though.
For those who are concerned about battery life, the Philips Fidelio T1 could be the better choice. Per charge, you’ll get 9 hours of continuous music with noise cancelling switched on, or 13 hours with it switched off, while the included charging case offers a total of 48 hours before you need to plug it in! You’ll have to spend ever so slightly more on them but that’ll be worth it if you’re the type who forgets to plug your tech in before you leave the house.