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Boardiesboi

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Sep 3, 2013
2,062
3,057
Sydney Australia
I just received my AirPods Pro in Sydney Australia - Here are my first impressions:
  • The case is similar in size to the standard AirPods, just shorter and slightly longer. Does not add any bulk when I put it in my pocket.
  • The pods themselves feels much more compact and stockier than the standard AirPods. The stem is a lot shorter.
  • Active noise cancelling works well, you turn it on and you can't hear much background noise at all. I don't feel any weird pressure when I have this on.
  • Ear tips test confirmed that medium tips provide a good seal for me.
  • Force touch sensors take a while to get use to. There is a slight clicking noise that comes through the pods when you force touch them.
  • Turning ANC on gives you a chime, long pressing the force touch sensor will give you another chime with a different tone to tell you transparency mode is on.

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gwhizkids

macrumors 604
Jun 21, 2013
6,881
7,811
I just received my AirPods Pro in Sydney Australia - Here are my first impressions:
  • The case is similar in size to the standard AirPods, just shorter and slightly longer. Does not add any bulk when I put it in my pocket.
  • The pods themselves feels much more compact and stockier than the standard AirPods. The stem is a lot shorter.
  • Active noise cancelling works well, you turn it on and you can't hear much background noise at all. I don't feel any weird pressure when I have this on.
  • Ear tips test confirmed that medium tips provide a good seal for me.
  • Force touch sensors take a while to get use to. There is a slight clicking noise that comes through the pods when you force touch them.
  • Turning ANC on gives you a chime, long pressing the force touch sensor will give you another chime with a different tone to tell you transparency mode is on.

View attachment 873457 View attachment 873459 View attachment 873462

How is the actual sound quality? How effective is the noise cancellation? I realize you probably just got them, so post back when you can!
 
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Boardiesboi

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Sep 3, 2013
2,062
3,057
Sydney Australia
How is the sound quality
How is the actual sound quality?

I already sold my AirPods 2 so I can't compare it with this. I have my lightning earpods and the AirPods Pro does provide better sound quality even when the ANC is off.

With ANC on, the sound is even better but that's probably because a lot of the background noise is cut out.

I've only had it for an hour and I'm sitting in the office so I won't be able to judge this properly. Will report back later in the day.
 
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roguedaemon

macrumors member
Apr 16, 2015
35
198
Just got mine today here in Melbourne, Aus.

After waiting way too long for the 13.2 update to install, I finally powered them on.
As usual, the pairing process was fantastic.
The products themselves and the quality of everything inside seems to be top notch.

I first went into settings and did the "Tip Fit Test" and it confirmed that everything was good.

But then I played my first song. I started without noise cancelling to try it out.
Hmm. Something must be wrong there's absolutely no depth to the sound.

Okay let's try a different song. Nope, same thing.

Maybe noise cancelling on will make a difference? Nope.

Then I compared them back to back with the OG AirPods. Wowee!! I just burst out laughing. THERE's my audio!

The sound quality difference is insane. Very, very disappointed in these for a $400 product.

It's a shame because, throughout my other testing I was thoroughly impressed.
The noise cancelling is incredible. Like, really really good. They fit better in my ears, are much more comfortable, much more discreet looking, less awkward, finally has a better control scheme, integrates better etc.
But in cramming all those awesome developments it seems Apple forgot about the whole point of headphones. The audio.

Real shame.

Happy to answer any questions people have or if you'd like any photos.
 
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Paco II

macrumors 68020
Sep 13, 2009
2,284
706
Despite the tip fit test, did you try a larger tip? Not saying you're wrong about the sound quality, but what you describe is common with ear buds of this style, and often the issue is not getting a good fit.

Just got mine today here in Melbourne, Aus.

After waiting way too long for the 13.2 update to install, I finally powered them on.
As usual, the pairing process was fantastic.
The products themselves and the quality of everything inside seems to be top notch.

I first went into settings and did the "Tip Fit Test" and it confirmed that everything was good.

But then I played my first song. I started without noise cancelling to try it out.
Hmm. Something must be wrong there's absolutely no depth to the sound.

Okay let's try a different song. Nope, same thing.

Maybe noise cancelling on will make a difference? Nope.

Then I compared them back to back with the OG AirPods. Wowee!! I just burst out laughing. THERE's my audio!

The sound quality difference is insane. Very, very disappointed in these for a $400 product.

It's a shame because, throughout my other testing I was thoroughly impressed.
The noise cancelling is incredible. Like, really really good. They fit better in my ears, are much more comfortable, much more discreet looking, less awkward, finally has a better control scheme, integrates better etc.
But in cramming all those awesome developments it seems Apple forgot about the whole point of headphones. The audio.

Real shame.

Happy to answer any questions people have or if you'd like any photos.
 
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upnorth85

macrumors 6502a
Oct 2, 2011
614
185
MN, USA
Just got mine today here in Melbourne, Aus.

After waiting way too long for the 13.2 update to install, I finally powered them on.
As usual, the pairing process was fantastic.
The products themselves and the quality of everything inside seems to be top notch.

I first went into settings and did the "Tip Fit Test" and it confirmed that everything was good.

But then I played my first song. I started without noise cancelling to try it out.
Hmm. Something must be wrong there's absolutely no depth to the sound.

Okay let's try a different song. Nope, same thing.

Maybe noise cancelling on will make a difference? Nope.

Then I compared them back to back with the OG AirPods. Wowee!! I just burst out laughing. THERE's my audio!

The sound quality difference is insane. Very, very disappointed in these for a $400 product.

It's a shame because, throughout my other testing I was thoroughly impressed.
The noise cancelling is incredible. Like, really really good. They fit better in my ears, are much more comfortable, much more discreet looking, less awkward, finally has a better control scheme, integrates better etc.
But in cramming all those awesome developments it seems Apple forgot about the whole point of headphones. The audio.

Real shame.

Happy to answer any questions people have or if you'd like any photos.
Thanks for the detailed feedback! How is the microphone quality when you make calls? What is the feedback from the other end - comparing the old and new Airpods?
 
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bobsamm

Suspended
Oct 6, 2019
1,017
635
I am 6 hours north of Op and got mine too. So far.
Fit is better can shake my head and left one doesn't fall out.
Look better if you care not as long and are more comfy.
NC is seems ok.
Still have airpod 2 sound better maybe a bit as more sealed.

Also the small buds seemed better fit but the seal wasn't good, so using the medium.
Also a pain to get out of the case.
 
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mavis

macrumors 601
Jul 30, 2007
4,310
670
Tokyo, Japan
Just got mine here in Tokyo.

The first thing I did was load up my "Bass Test" playlist in Apple Music. A big caveat here - I'm coming from Sony WF-1000XM3 and WH-1000XM3, with the Clear Bass turned up to 8 - I like bass, particularly in the 20-80Hz range. I've found quite a few songs over the years with beats or bass lines in that range, and I always test new headphones by listening to those tracks. For example, Bambro Koyo Ganda by Bonobo - that's an Apple Music link, btw - at about 1:41 this wicked sub-bass line kicks in, and on good headphones it's amazing. Cheap headphones/speakers? You can't even hear it. Another sort of asterisk - I have a cold ATM, which is probably affecting my hearing a little. :rolleyes:

The good news is, the AirPods Pro can handle the bass, BUT it's far more 'polite' than I'm used to. The bass is there, but it's a lot more subdued, compared to the Sonys. Again, the Sony WF-1000XM3 and WH-1000XM3 can be adjusted to be very bass-heavy - still clean, and not overpowering, but yeah - they can be tailored to fit the sound you're looking for. Their bass, when EQ'd, is definitely much stronger than the AirPod Pro. The soundstage on these AirPods is fairly wide, for earbuds, and the highs are clear and smooth. The mids are a bit more forward than I'm used to, but that might just be because I'm running on flat EQ whereas my WF-1000XM3s are on a custom EQ.

ANC is good, not quite as effective as Sony's implementation but still pretty good. Traffic noise is basically non-existent with ANC enabled and music playing, and train noise is gone, too. I can still hear the occasional outside sound (the woman sitting next to me on the train just turned the pages of a magazine and I heard it, a bit, but then I didn't hear it at all when she put the magazine in her bag before getting off the train) but it's FAR better than the original AirPods - I stopped using the AirPods (still have the 2nd gens in my bag) because I was so tired of all the ambient noise coming through. The AirPods Pro definitely take care of that.

If anyone has any specific questions, I'll do my best to answer them.

edit: here's a link to my bass test playlist on Apple Music, if anyone wants to give it a spin. All different genres, but most of the songs have a solid <100Hz bass line or occasional beat, that makes them good for testing headphones and speakers. Even Triste by Elis Regina - that one's Bossa Nova and just has an acoustic bass, but it thumps. :)

edit2: I've managed to get a bit more bass out of the AirPods Pro by changing the EQ from Off to Latin. That preset seems to boost the low end, drop the mids a bit (takes care of them being a little too forward) and leaves the high end intact, or slightly increased. Sort of a shallow "V" shaped EQ, to my ears. I then reduced my Sony WF-1000XM3 bass boost from 8 to 3, to compensate, and both headphones sound good now. The AirPods Pro still lack the punch of the Sonys in the <100Hz range, but it's better than before. ?
 
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sithjedi333

macrumors newbie
May 9, 2012
22
4
Mavis

Great review. Will you keep them vs the Sony WF that you have? How would you compare the 2? I’m looking at the same choices and like bass but also like apple products.

Thank you
 
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mavis

macrumors 601
Jul 30, 2007
4,310
670
Tokyo, Japan
Mavis

Great review. Will you keep them vs the Sony WF that you have? How would you compare the 2? I’m looking at the same choices and like bass but also like apple products.

Thank you
Thanks dude. Yeah, I'll definitely keep both. I like the convenience of AirPods as I have lots of Apple gear and they're much more seamless in terms of switching, for example, between my Apple Watch and iPhone, iMac, etc. I'll probably continue to use the Sony WF-1000XM3 more though, because they have much better bass and slightly better ANC. The AirPods Pro are great too, but I'll use them more for exercising, phone calls (haven't made any calls with them yet, but my v1 and v2 AirPods were great for calls) and 'Hey Siri' is really convenient when walking to the station, etc.

If you only want to carry one device though, I'd probably recommend the Sonys over the AirPods Pro, because of the better ANC and bass. If you don't care too much about LF bass, the AirPods Pro do sound good, though. Hope that helps.
 
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bobsamm

Suspended
Oct 6, 2019
1,017
635
Been testing swapping between pro's and AP2, A2 has more bass than pro but pro a bit more comfortable. Not $399AUD comfy though, will be returning.
 
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yoheywut

macrumors regular
Apr 22, 2015
116
88
Maybe noise cancelling on will make a difference? Nope.

Then I compared them back to back with the OG AirPods. Wowee!! I just burst out laughing. THERE's my audio!

The sound quality difference is insane. Very, very disappointed in these for a $400 product.

It's a shame because, throughout my other testing I was thoroughly impressed.
The noise cancelling is incredible. Like, really really good. They fit better in my ears, are much more comfortable, much more discreet looking, less awkward, finally has a better control scheme, integrates better etc.
But in cramming all those awesome developments it seems Apple forgot about the whole point of headphones. The audio.

Real shame.

Happy to answer any questions people have or if you'd like any photos.

You most certainly have a bad fit then. There’s no way any headphone with a good proper in ear seal should sound worse than a plastic counterpart. High end IEM units often offer custom ear seals tailored to your ear by an audiologist, so if the Pros are sounding bad, try a different fit/tip. Don’t rely on the sound test alone.
 
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sithjedi333

macrumors newbie
May 9, 2012
22
4
Thanks dude. Yeah, I'll definitely keep both. I like the convenience of AirPods as I have lots of Apple gear and they're much more seamless in terms of switching, for example, between my Apple Watch and iPhone, iMac, etc. I'll probably continue to use the Sony WF-1000XM3 more though, because they have much better bass and slightly better ANC. The AirPods Pro are great too, but I'll use them more for exercising, phone calls (haven't made any calls with them yet, but my v1 and v2 AirPods were great for calls) and 'Hey Siri' is really convenient when walking to the station, etc.

If you only want to carry one device though, I'd probably recommend the Sonys over the AirPods Pro, because of the better ANC and bass. If you don't care too much about LF bass, the AirPods Pro do sound good, though. Hope that helps.

Thank you VM!
 
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trim spaniels

macrumors newbie
Oct 29, 2019
3
1
Loving mine - after having several pairs of headphones for every occasion my first gen Air Pod's wiped them all out - usability and lack of cables transformed my experience - and I never found the sound quality lacking. The only time they failed was in any kind of noisy environment - so I jumped at the chance to get these. Set up as ever is simple - and to me - they sound great. The difference isn't vast - but it is def noticeable and the ANC is really great. Glad I got them. Only niggles are getting used to the kind of press required to skip tracks but that'll come with time - and actI have to be pretty clear to activate Hey Siri with my voice.
 
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C64

macrumors 65816
Sep 3, 2008
1,234
222
Question to all the early owners, and what I'm a bit afraid of myself: currently I can keep the AirPods in my ears pretty much all day long without any kind of irritation, since they naturally fit really well. What is your experience so far with the silicone tips that create a seal?

According to specs the vents should equalize pressure, but I guess with these tips there will always be more physical pressure on the inside of your ear than with the regular AirPods that just kind of sit/hang in your ear opening.

Loving mine - after having several pairs of headphones for every occasion my first gen Air Pod's wiped them all out - usability and lack of cables transformed my experience - and I never found the sound quality lacking. The only time they failed was in any kind of noisy environment - so I jumped at the chance to get these. Set up as ever is simple - and to me - they sound great. The difference isn't vast - but it is def noticeable and the ANC is really great. Glad I got them. Only niggles are getting used to the kind of press required to skip tracks but that'll come with time - and actI have to be pretty clear to activate Hey Siri with my voice.

Good to hear! I'm a big fan of the original ones as well for the same reasons. I personally find them great for movies and most types of music as well, so I guess I'm lucky to not really hear too much of a difference with higher-end earphones and even headphones. The convenience factor of the AirPods is just so great. Can't wait to receive the AirPods Pro later today.

Question about the controls: I currently often fast-forward through a podcast by quickly double-tapping a whole bunch of times. Is the tapping option completely gone? How easy/comfortable is it to quickly double-press/squeeze the stem of the AirPods Pro many times in a row?
 
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Boardiesboi

macrumors 68020
Original poster
Sep 3, 2013
2,062
3,057
Sydney Australia
I’ve been wearing mine in the office all arvo and the comfort level is on par with the standard AP. Dont really feel any addition pressure due to the ANC.

On the bus on the way home and I basically can’t hear anything other than the music from my phone.
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Is the tapping option completely gone? How easy/comfortable is it to quickly double-press/squeeze the stem of the AirPods Pro many times in a row?
Yes you can’t tap them anymore to skip. The force touch sensor will take some getting used to. I double squeezed a few times now and it registers well on the APP.
 
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Ralfi

macrumors 68040
Dec 22, 2016
3,782
2,475
Australia
My impressions thread’s rendered useless now ??

Anyway...
Yes you can’t tap them anymore to skip. The force touch sensor will take some getting used to. I double squeezed a few times now and it registers well on the APP.
Yeah I’d imagine it’d take a bit of time to adjust. Seems like they could’ve even implemented volume control to the list of functions available when squeezing the stems?

Bold prediction - volume control will be added in an upcoming IOS update!
 
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