Get Immersive Audio Experience On-The-Go With Google Pixelbuds

Get Immersive Audio Experience On-The-Go With Google Pixelbuds

Written by Kenneth Sawyer, In Earbuds, Published On
March 2, 2024
, 254 Views

In Short

  • Google Pixel Buds Pro promises active noise canceling (ANC) and a redesigned earpiece.
  • The casing is now IPX2 water-resistant to match the buds’ IPX4 classification.
  • The enhanced battery life, noise canceling, and Google Assistant integration make this one worth a try. Google gave the Pixel Buds Pro active noise canceling (ANC) so you can work while blocking out the environment.
  • For those who like to let others in, the Pixel Buds Pro contains Android-specific capabilities like Google Translate and a transparency option. Pixel Buds Pro is more of a Google extension than music headphones due to things like Google Assistant integration.

Pixel Buds have gone through multiple iterations. The initial Pixel Buds flopped as intelligent wireless headphones. Still, the Pixel Buds 2 was an accurate wireless model, and the Pixel Buds A-Series trounced the Apple AirPods as a terrific set of wireless in-ears for $100. With the Pixel Buds Pro, Google hopes to dominate the noise-cancelling earphones industry. Google introduced active noise cancellation (ANC), Bluetooth multipoint, longer battery life, improved wind resistance, Volume EQ, and Spatial Audio to the fourth-generation device. The corporation has also made important comfort, charging, and pricing considerations. Does it live up to expectations? We spent five days using Google Pixel Buds Pro and learned all you need to know before buying.

Google Pixelbuds Specifications

Google Pixelbuds

Price$199 / £179 / AU$299
Colours AvailableCharcoal, coral, fog (gray), and lemongrass
ConnectivityBluetooth 5.0
Battery Life7 hours
Water resistanceYES
Size0.88 x 0.87 x 0.93 inches
Weight0.22 ounces
Touch controls
  • Play or pause
  • Go to next track or previous
  • Answer calls
  • Ask Google Assistant
  • Control volume

What Is In The Box?

  • The Pixel Buds Pro earbuds themselves (left and right earbuds)
  • A charging/carrying case for the earbuds
  • A USB charging cable to charge the case
  • Different sized ear tips (the article mentions 11mm, 12mm, and 13mm sizes are included)
  • A quick start guide and documentation

Experience Google Pixel Buds Pro?

Our test model features a matte white casing with black accents like the Pixel Buds (2020). The LED has moved from the bottom to the lid, and the enclosure is now IPX4. A thumb flick lifts the tight cover to expose the black buds’ subdued Lemongrass crowns. Colors are Charcoal, Fog, Coral, Bay, and Porcelain for Pixel Buds Pro. On the nearly sandstone-textured cap is the Google’ G,’ where the touchpad is. Like the Volkswagen Beetle or fruit-flavored Mentos, the style is a more muted version of the late 1990s bubbly design. The earbud nozzle is 6mm wide and holds an 11mm dynamic driver.

Google includes 11mm, 12mm, and 13mm ear tips with the Pixel Buds Pro. Because everyone’s ears are different, I wear a small in one and a medium in the other. Softly screw the buds into your ears. Despite their IPX4 certification, there are better earphones for jogging. Pixel Buds Pro doesn’t fit as securely as versions with stabilizing ear wings. The app does an ear tip fit test. However, it states every size is a fantastic fit in my tests, which is false. However, the Pixel Buds Pro is comfy but requires modifications when walking. Google replaced Pixel Buds A-Series Adaptive Sound with more helpful active noise suppression. Adaptive Sound is still available in Google Pixel 6’s settings menu but not on the Android app. Instead of automatically increasing volume to drown out extraneous noise, ANC identifies and cancels it. Since your volume is unchanged, you may listen softly.

Controlling Google Pixel Buds Pro?

Google Pixelbuds

Google Pixel Buds Pro controls are intuitive by default. Sliding forward and back adjusts loudness, which is intriguing. Pixel Buds Pro is one of the only genuine wireless earphones with this functionality. Sony headphones like the WH-1000XM5 have swipes, but not the earbuds. Pixel Buds Pro also has automatic play/pause when you insert or remove the buds and mono listening. Thanks to Google’s conversation detection, these earphones automatically activate transparency mode when you talk in 2023. Both buds have the same controls, which improves accessibility.

You may mistakenly pause audio (single tap) when turning on ANC. Swiping is difficult on damp palms owing to the touch panel’s texture. Even still, swipes feel better than taps, which sound and feel horrible no matter how softly you hit the buds. One coworker lost the buds when trying the volume control swipes. You can set the buds to react to “Hey Google” hands-free.

It’s surprising how little Pixel Buds Pro touch controls can be customized, given Google’s Android customization. Swipe forward to regulate volume, not skip a track. You can turn in-ear detection on/off, dedicate one earbud to the Google Assistant, and pick which listening modes to cycle from the earphones. Google’s default listening modes are ANC and transparency, but you may add standard mode using the app.

Do Google Pixel Buds Pro users need the Pixel Buds app?

Pixel Buds are available for Android. It offers updates, limited customization, and ear tip fit testing. The app may let you set up Google Assistant and assign an earbud to operate it. After setting it up, you may need the app for updates so that you can forget it. We may be used to giving our headphones and earbuds authorization, but this is part of Google’s data collection ecosystem. You must agree to the terms and conditions to use any features you may have paid for.

Find device, like Apple’s Find My, lets you find lost buds. Allow location data in your settings before losing the buds for this to operate. Pixel Buds Pro may be used with Google Translate on Android and Pixel phones. So, you may start a discussion and get an answer using your headset and telephone.

Volume EQ is a new equalizer that may fix something that wasn’t broken. Increasing or decreasing loudness is supposed to adjust your EQ automatically. It amplifies bass and treble at low volumes and lowers them at high ones.

The Google Pixel Buds Pro shipped with only the Volume EQ. The subsequent upgrades have fortunately added a traditional equalizer. You may now select five presets or store your own. You receive five sliders (Upper Treble, Treble, Mid, Bass, Lower Bass) and no decibels or frequencies to construct your own EQ, so try. This may enhance the Pixel Buds Pro’s hyped Sound.

Note: Recent Pixel phones running firmware 4.30 may offer spatial audio with head tracking. Head tracking works best with live concert recordings when you feel like you’re “in” the audience. The app now shows you how long you’ve been listening to music and if you should reduce the level to protect your hearing. Pixel phone owners may discover the system-level app under Settings’ Connected Devices tab. Pixel Buds web software lets Chromebook users modify the headphones from their computer.

Pricing and availability

Google Pixelbuds

Google Pixel Buds Pro costs $199 / £179 / AU$299 at Amazon, Best Buy, B&H, and Google Store. It comes in charcoal, coral, fog (gray), and lemongrass. The kit includes a wireless charging case, three tip sizes, a user handbook, and a safety instruction. These earbuds cost the same as popular sellers like the Beats Fit Pro and Bose QuietComfort Earbuds, which cancel noise well. The AirPods Pro ($249) and Sony WF-1000XM4 ($279) are more costly, while the Sennheiser CX Plus ($128) has more features for less.

Digital assistant controls

Please buy the Pixel Buds Pro for their Google Assistant integration and experience, which no other wireless earbuds can match. Assistant wake phrases (“Hey Google” and “OK Google”) start the AI bot. Google’s software processes orders quickly, and the three-mic array accurately registers every syllable in my long questions. Google Translate was just as reliable, and the Pixel Buds Pro makes real-time translation of over 40 languages easy. Choose Conversation Mode or open Translate to utilize the function. The second prominent Google feature is notifications, alerting users to calendar events, traffic, travel changes, emails, and messages. Pixel Buds Pro includes sensitive wear detection (auto-pause/play) and single/multi-tap, swipe, and long-hold touch controls.

Sound quality

Google isn’t known for its Sound, but the Pixel Buds Pro are better than I’ve heard. Each earbud has an 11mm (0.43-inch) dynamic speaker driver and a proprietary six-core audio processor for rich Sound in various musical styles. Because of their wide frequency range, listening with ANC keeps quality and enjoyment intact. The Hall & Oates song “I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do)” has excellent layering. Early synthesizers and mechanical drum samples mixed beautifully, and the drums had a kick. Soulful harmonies in the hook and chorus were more appealing. These were clear and strong above the bassline, demonstrating the Pixel Buds Pro’s low-mid balance.

PROS CONS
Lightweight, cozy fitAdaptive Sound is a nuisance.
Combines well with the Android experience
Great touch controls and IPX4 certification for the headphones

Should I buy it?

Android users looking for inexpensive, hands-free Google Assistant true wireless earbuds should consider the Pixel Buds A-Series over the Pixel Buds 2. The Pixel Buds A-Series aren’t the best true wireless earbuds, but they’re better than the bass-less Pixel Buds 2. Try these to restore low-end to your music. Although it often stalls, Google’s real-time translating engine is an excellent answer to language hurdles. It’s one of Google’s better earphone features but needs work.

FAQs

  1. How is Google Pixel Buds Pro different from prior models and marketable?

The Pixel Buds Pro improves on earlier models with active noise cancellation (ANC), IPX2 water protection in the casing and IPX4 buds, and a redesigned earpiece. These upgrades, with improved battery life, Google Assistant integration, and Android-specific functions like Google Translate, make the Pixel Buds Pro a tempting alternative for immersive music with sophisticated functionality.

  1. Can Pixel Buds Pro touch controls be customized?

Pixel Buds Pro’s clever touch controls let users change volume by sliding forward and back, a rare feature in true wireless headphones. Mono listening and automatic play/pause when inserting or withdrawing the buds are supported via the touch controls. The Pixel Buds app lets users turn in-ear detection on or off, dedicate one earbud to Google Assistant, and choose listening modes.

  1. Is the Pixel Buds app required for Google Pixel Buds Pro, and what are its features?

The Android Pixel Buds app offers software updates, minimal customization, and an ear tip fit test. Users may set up Google Assistant and assign touch control functions through the app. The software helps with initial setup and setting, although users may only require it for updates or modifications. The software also has “Find device” for missing buds, Google Translate, and Volume EQ for volume-based equalization.

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