Samsung's Galaxy Buds Live vs. Apple's AirPods Pro

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Samsung last week unveiled new flagship smartphones and the new bean-shaped Galaxy Buds Live, a set of wireless earbuds with Active Noise Cancellation that are designed to rival Apple's AirPods Pro. We got a set of the new Galaxy Buds Live and compared them to the AirPods Pro in our latest YouTube video.


Priced at $179, the Galaxy Buds Live have a unique look with a jelly bean-like design that matches the contour of the ears. We found them to be comfortable even for long periods of time, and the multiple ear tips available will allow them to work with most ear sizes.

Samsung added 12mm drivers to the Galaxy Buds Live along with three built-in microphones and a voice pickup unit, with the microphone quality demoed in the video above.


When it comes to sound quality, the Galaxy Buds Live sound decent (and better than the AirPods), but the AirPods Pro win out with more balance and clarity. The Galaxy Buds Live have more noticeable bass, but it can cause songs to sound a bit muddy. Sound can be adjusted with equalizer settings available in the Galaxy Buds app, but we didn't see much of an improvement tinkering with these settings.

One of the main selling points of the Galaxy Buds Live is Active Noise Cancellation, a feature also offered in the AirPods Pro, but the Galaxy Buds Live ANC functionality was mediocre, at least with our unit.


It's hard to tell when ANC is enabled or disabled on the Galaxy Buds Live because the feature just doesn't seem to be blocking out much ambient noise. There's no comparison to the AirPods Pro, which offer much better Active Noise Cancellation. It's better than no ANC at all, but it's so subtle that it can't compare to competing products.

There are several gestures available for the Galaxy Buds, which are similar to the gestures available on AirPods Pro. One tap pauses, two taps skips a song, and three taps goes back. A long press can be set to turn Active Noise Cancellation on or off, activate Siri, or control the Volume.


The Galaxy Buds Live offer eight hours of battery life before needing to be recharged, while the AirPods Pro offer 4.5 hours of listening time. The square-shaped case that houses the Galaxy Buds Live and provides extra battery life is compact and pocketable, plus it has a USB-C port for charging. It adds an additional 21 hours of playback time, while Apple makes about 20 hours of additional battery life available with the AirPods Pro case. In total, the Galaxy Buds offer 29 hours of battery life while the AirPods Pro offer 24.


Galaxy Buds Live have useful features for Samsung users, such as one tap pairing and seamless switching, but on an iPhone they function as standard Bluetooth earbuds. There's a Galaxy Buds app in the iOS App Store for connecting and to provide firmware updates and equalizer settings, but since these are designed for Samsung devices, Apple features are limited.

Galaxy Buds owners who have iPhones are going to want to download the app and update the Galaxy Buds Live software right away because we found the Active Noise Cancellation and gestures weren't working properly until an update was installed.


Even with the less than stellar Active Noise Cancellation functionality, the Galaxy Buds Live sound decent, fit well, and are some of Samsung's best true wireless headphones. At $179, they're cheaper than the $250 AirPods Pro, but if you're an iPhone user, you'd be better off with Apple's more expensive option.

Android users seeking a solid set of true wireless earbuds should take a look at the Galaxy Buds Live as a potential option.

Article Link: Samsung's Galaxy Buds Live vs. Apple's AirPods Pro
 

NavySilver

macrumors member
Aug 4, 2012
69
137
New York, NY
I agree with many tech reviewers across the web, these should be called the "Beans".:p

AirPods is a prime example of modern day marketing that embraces the peculiarity of a product. These earbuds look distinctive, I suppose works well, and are definitely cheaper than AirPods Pros... could be a hit if Samsung really pushes it smartly.
 
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AngerDanger

macrumors 601
Dec 9, 2008
4,842
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Here's the thumbnail we should've used:

beannail.jpg


I agree with many tech reviewers across the web, these should be called the "Beans".:p

AirPods is a prime example of modern day marketing that embraces the peculiarity of a product. These earbuds look distinctive, I suppose works well, and are definitely cheaper than AirPods Pros... could be a hit if Samsung really pushes it smartly.
Haha, yeah, the should definitely be called Beans, but I'm not sure that Apple really embraces the peculiarity of AirPods; their marketing materials don't really mention aesthetics at all.
 
Last edited:

Plinga

macrumors newbie
Mar 11, 2012
12
23
These earbuds look distinctive, I suppose works well, and are definitely cheaper than AirPods Pros... could be a hit if Samsung really pushes it smartly.
These Buds are not just much more lower priced than the Airpods Pros, the Buds also cost $20 less than the 2nd gen AirPods with wireless charging case. Samsung is already losing on marketing because everyone is comparing it to the Pros when the Buds are great value compared to the regular AirPods (even MacRumors says the Buds are "better than the AirPods"). Most people have the regular Airpods not the Pros and they should be seriously considering the Buds
 

HudsonSteele

macrumors newbie
Aug 23, 2016
29
31
So I would love to see ya comparison video for an unexpected pair of bluetooth buds: The Walmart sold Onn brand. I love my AirPods. I really want to get the AirPods Pro but I also like to eat. Recently, my AirPods made its through the washer and I have been waiting for the right time to get a new pair. All my devices and products are from the apple ecosystem and I would like to keep it that way. I like my devices to work well, and so I wait until I have the money to get what I want.

My wife thought she would get me bluetooth headphones for my birthday. My wife likes coupons and knows nothing about technology, so a pair of $25 dollar headphones sounded great to her. Not wanting to be ungrateful, I thanked her for the "kind" and thoughtful gift. I had a conference call later that night so I told her I would use them, fully expecting them to be a pain to use, have the worst sound, and have an awful microphone. To my absolute shock, they were extremely easy to use, the sound quality was, I dare say, slightly better than my AirPods (although they are in ear headphones so not quite the same comparison) and the microphone was on point. They even worked independently and I could switch ears with ease, without pairing each earbud separately. I would be interested to hear anyone else's thoughts on the comparison if you have both. I am so blown away, I am even going to by the AirPod style version of the Onn headphones to see if they hold up to their $140 counterpart.
 

7thson

macrumors 6502a
May 13, 2012
773
432
Six Rivers, CA
Two things jump out that aren’t right.
1)They cost $170, or $169.99 if you must.
2)The AirPods Pro do not support the tap features like AirPods do, unless this was changed in a firmware update, so I wouldn’t say the gestures are similar unless you’re comparing Galaxy Buds Live to AirPods.
 
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WannaGoMac

macrumors 68020
Feb 11, 2007
2,485
3,570
So I would love to see ya comparison video for an unexpected pair of bluetooth buds: The Walmart sold Onn brand. I love my AirPods. I really want to get the AirPods Pro but I also like to eat. Recently, my AirPods made its through the washer and I have been waiting for the right time to get a new pair. All my devices and products are from the apple ecosystem and I would like to keep it that way. I like my devices to work well, and so I wait until I have the money to get what I want.

My wife thought she would get me bluetooth headphones for my birthday. My wife likes coupons and knows nothing about technology, so a pair of $25 dollar headphones sounded great to her. Not wanting to be ungrateful, I thanked her for the "kind" and thoughtful gift. I had a conference call later that night so I told her I would use them, fully expecting them to be a pain to use, have the worst sound, and have an awful microphone. To my absolute shock, they were extremely easy to use, the sound quality was, I dare say, slightly better than my AirPods (although they are in ear headphones so not quite the same comparison) and the microphone was on point. They even worked independently and I could switch ears with ease, without pairing each earbud separately. I would be interested to hear anyone else's thoughts on the comparison if you have both. I am so blown away, I am even going to by the AirPod style version of the Onn headphones to see if they hold up to their $140 counterpart.
What model did she specifically get yuou? I have yet to find cheap bluetooth headset mics that dont sound horrible unless youre in perfect indoor conditions (i.e. no outside noise or wind noise).
 
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69Mustang

macrumors 604
Jan 7, 2014
7,443
13,950
In between a rock and a hard place
I agree with many tech reviewers across the web, these should be called the "Beans".:p

AirPods is a prime example of modern day marketing that embraces the peculiarity of a product. These earbuds look distinctive, I suppose works well, and are definitely cheaper than AirPods Pros... could be a hit if Samsung really pushes it smartly.
100% guarantee that "Beans" was at least a consideration. A consideration that should have been finalized imo. They're Beans. In fact, Samsung even called them Beans. iFixt's tear down revealed each Bud's connecting cable says "BEAN RIGHT" and "BEAN LEFT".
 

HudsonSteele

macrumors newbie
Aug 23, 2016
29
31
What model did she specifically get yuou? I have yet to find cheap bluetooth headset mics that dont sound horrible unless youre in perfect indoor conditions (i.e. no outside noise or wind noise).
I will say they aren't great for wind, but a little breeze is no problem. Here is a link to them. You can see if they have them in stock at your local store. They do fatigue my ears after an hour or so of use which is how I learned I could switch them similar to AirPods, but thats because I have small ear canals. This makes me think I don't want AirPods pros. I am going to try foam tips first to see how that does. Either way I am going to try the AirPods style to see if they are like apples in quality.

 
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NavySilver

macrumors member
Aug 4, 2012
69
137
New York, NY
Haha, yeah, the should definitely be called Beans, but I'm not sure that Apple really embraces the peculiarity of AirPods; their marketing materials don't really mention aesthetics at all.
You're right, I shouldn't have said "marketing" per se! But Ive did make some remarks on why it's designed that way, and how the way users are habitually looking out for its design, addictively flicking open/closing the case, are all deliberate. They designed AirPods knowing all the backlashes it's bound to get in the beginning and how people will fall in love with them nevertheless. So the unconventional design is an irresistible catch of AirPods – and why I think Samsung has got something right that other TWS manufacturers mostly hasn't.
 
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hot-gril

macrumors 6502
Jul 11, 2020
275
179
Northern California, USA
> The Galaxy Buds Live have more noticeable bass, but it can cause songs to sound a bit muddy.
That's how Beats by Dr Dre sound, or at least sounded in the early revisions. It's like they wanted to cover up the lesser quality by boosting the bass and hoping you're listening to hip hop music.
 

SubduedTiger

macrumors member
Mar 30, 2019
42
34
It's hilarious watching so many companies attempt to differentiate and still all look the precise same. Of all of the imaginable configurations, it must be a pure white, glossy case with a pinpoint-sized bright green LED?
 

69Mustang

macrumors 604
Jan 7, 2014
7,443
13,950
In between a rock and a hard place
It's hilarious watching so many companies attempt to differentiate and still all look the precise same. Of all of the imaginable configurations, it must be a pure white, glossy case with a pinpoint-sized bright green LED?
It would be necessary to ignore the obvious differences in each product to come up with looks precisely the same. Heck, even a blind person would be like, bruh... c'mon man. Considering white is but one of the available colors, it's even more hilarious to claim sameness. What you're doing is the equivalent of claiming a Ford Focus and a Honda Civic look precisely the same because they're painted white and have headlights. :D
1597373002660.png
 

TrevorR90

macrumors 6502
Oct 1, 2009
266
171
I like the good ole fashion over ear headphones. These things seem like I'd lose them easily, in fact, I've seen them on the sidewalk several times, no joke.
 
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