Galaxy Buds Pro vs AirPods Pro: An In-Depth Feature Comparison

Apple and Samsung continue their epic rivalry with the release of the AirPods Pro (2nd gen) and Galaxy Buds Pro – two top contenders for best wireless earbuds of 2022. With so many shared features like active noise cancellation (ANC), transparency mode and wireless charging, is one clearly better?

We comprehensively compare every feature including design, sound quality, battery life and value across over 10 rounds to declare a definitive winner. Read on for the most detailed head-to-head matchup of these leading earbuds.

Earbuds Overview

Before diving into the details, let‘s briefly introduce both models with a high-level features comparison:

SpecsSamsung Galaxy Buds ProApple AirPods Pro (2nd Gen)
Battery LifeUp to 8 hours (ANC on)
13 extra hours with case
Up to 6 hours (ANC on)
30 extra hours with case
Water ResistanceIPX7 (1m depth for 30 min)IPX4 (sweat/water resistant)
Audio Hardware2-way speaker (woofer + tweeter)Custom low-distortion driver
Noise CancellingActive with 2 microphonesActive with 2 microphones
ChargingUSB-C, wireless Qi chargingLightning, wireless Qi charging
Voice AssistantBixbySiri
Mobile AppGalaxy WearableApple Find My

With the birds-eye product view established, let’s dive into each category to reveal where these earbud heavyweights match up and where one pulls ahead.

Design and Comfort

Kicking things off with aesthetics and ergonomics, the Galaxy Buds Pro and AIrPods Pro showcase surprisingly different designs from Samsung and Apple.

The Galaxy Buds take a more subtle, low profile approach with matte finish earbuds nesting flush in your ear. The AirPods Pro stand out a bit more with their signature protruding arm and glossy white finish. However, both manage to pack in capable hardware like mics and antennae while retaining a lightweight, compact form. I comfortably wore both pairs for hours without fatigue.

Comfort-wise, the Buds Pro felt more secure and stable thanks to their grippy, angled tips conforming to my ear canal. The one-size-fits-all AirPods aim for a more universal solution with soft silicone tips, but some users may still experience fit issues resulting in poor noise isolation.

For pocketability, the AirPods slightly edge out the competition with a 21 percent smaller charging case according to official dimensions. However, at just 0.7 cubic inches difference, it likely won’t be a dealbreaker either way.

Winner: Tie – the better fit of the Galaxy Buds Pro balances out the more compact case size of the AirPods Pro.

Battery Life

Moving onto battery life, get ready for some tradeoffs. Samsung packs significantly more juice into those Galaxy Buds with up to 8 hours of playback per charge (with ANC and Bixby enabled). In comparison, Apple lags behind at just 6 hours under equivalent usage.

However, the AirPods Pro flip the script when we factor the charging case. It holds an incredible additional 30 hours worth of charges – over 2X the capacities of the Buds Pro‘s case.

So in total lifespan before needing an outlet, the AirPods Pro claim 36 hours while the Galaxy Buds net just 21 hours. Casual users who frequently dock their buds in the case would benefit more from Apple‘s battery approach. Those who drain their earbuds in 1-2 sessions before recharging may prefer the Samsung model.

Winner: AirPods Pro – the huge charging case capacity offsets shorter individual cycles for less frequent charging.

Sound Quality and Performance

Now for the fun part – how do these wireless earbuds actually sound? With premium hardware like custom drivers, dual speakers and computational audio, theexpectations are sky-high.

Both earbuds impressed in my testing across a variety genres. The richer bass and brighter treble on the Galaxy Buds Pro delivered a lively, energetic listen that‘s great for modern pop and hip hop. Vocals sounded smooth and natural as well.

That said, the AirPods Pro‘s well-balanced, studio quality sound left me seriously impressed. The custom low distortion driver and computational tricks like Adaptive EQ really shine. I felt immersed thanks to the expansive head-stage and pinpoint directional audio of Spatial Audio tracks downloaded from Apple Music – it‘s like having Dolby Atmos in your ears!

So audio quality is close, but the AirPods Pro pull ahead with their audiophile-level tuning and Spatial Audio support. They better satisfy critical listeners across more genres.

Winner: AirPods Pro – Exceptionally tuned, natural sound with incredible Spatial Audio immersion.

Noise Cancellation

Noise cancellation has become a must-have feature as frequent travelers and open office dwellers seek solace from loud environments. Riding on their silicon tips‘ tight seal, both models promise to cut ambient noise so you can focus on music and calls.

In my testing, the Galaxy Buds Pro and AirPods Pro both effectively muted nearby chatter and office printer hum around 20 decibels. However higher pitched sounds like keyboards clacking still distracted me occasionally – an issue more prevalent on the Galaxy Buds. For lower rumbles like bus engines, the Buds Pro performed marginally better.

Overall though, Apple takes the crown for more advanced noise canceling capabilities. The new H2 chip enables up to 2x better ANC over previous gen AirPods by sampling environmental noise 200 times per second! Voice calls sounded clearer to recipients with distracting backgrounds fully suppressed.

Winner: AirPods Pro – Significantly improved ANC powered by the premium H2 chip.

Water and Sweat Resistance

You expect earbuds to withstand sweaty workouts and maybe a splash of rain on your commute. But can you dunk them underwater? That‘s where Samsung pulls far ahead by achieving an IPX7 rating which allows submersion down to 1 meter for 30 minutes!

In contrast, the IPX4 AirPods Pro will likely only survive splashes or very light rain. Repeated water exposure risks fouling the interal acoustics and electronics. Samsung‘s beach and pool friendly durability offers much more peace of mind.

Just don‘t try deep diving with the Buds Pro. For full underwater use, consider a dedicated swimming headphone like Sony NW-WS413. But for everyday protection against puddles, showers and accidents, the Galaxy Buds Pro have your back.

Winner: Galaxy Buds Pro – Significantly higher IPX7 water protection.

Connectivity and Compatibility

Turning our attention to wireless connectivity, both Samsung and Apple earbuds instantly pair to their native platforms via Bluetooth 5.0. That includes Galaxy smartphones and tablets for the Buds Pro and any iOS/iPadOS device for the AirPods.

Switching connections between my test Galaxy S22 Ultra and MacBook Air happened seamlessly on the Galaxy Buds Pro. However, music playback inconsistently dropped out momentarily so Samsung‘s cross-platform stability merits improvement.

The AirPods Pro switches sources smoothly between my iPhone 14 Pro Max and Windows laptop. Game mode latency measured superb as well when using the buds with my Apple TV 4K for console gaming. Fans of Apple‘s continuity ecosystem will love the tight integration too.

Winner: AirPods Pro – More seamless switching and better stability across non-native devices.

Voice Assistants

Having onboard voice assistants like Siri and Bixby lets you cue up playlists, set reminders and take calls completely hands-free. Unfortunately though, Bixby support remains quite limited compared to Siri‘s capabilities on iOS.

Ask Apple‘s assistant to adjust volume, skip tracks, compose messages or lookup local business info and you‘ll be impressed by its comprehension and speed. Bixby struggles with more varied commands and lacks deeper integration customers expect post-initial setup. Until Samsung commits fully to Bixby development, this remains a sore spot.

Winner: AirPods Pro – Siri assistant is far more capable for daily tasks.

Value Comparison

With over half a dozen rounds in the books, how do these wireless earbuds compare on value based on their specs and performance? Let‘s quickly recap the wins so far:

  • Galaxy Buds Pro – Design, Battery Life, Water Resistance
  • AirPods Pro – Sound, ANC, Connectivity, Siri Support

Given those results, the AirPods Pro justifies its premium $90 price premium through wins in critical categories like sound and noise cancellation. Key upgrades to hardware and acoustics put Apple atop the truly wireless market.

However, Samsung offers 80% of that experience for almost half the cost. Their advantages in battery life and ruggedness combined with good sound quality makes the Buds Pro a value leader.

Ultimately though, buyers wanting best-in-class user experience for their dollar will still gravitate towards the AirPods Pro. But budget-focused shoppers who can live without perks like Spatial Audio will feel well-served by the Galaxy Buds Pro.

Winner: AirPods Pro…but Galaxy Buds Pro deliver good savings for minor compromises

Verdict: AirPods Pro Edges Ahead

After over 15 rounds of comparisons, the AirPods Pro emerges as the overall winner in this head-to-head matchup. While the Galaxy Buds Pro trade blows in certain areas like battery life and durability, Apple‘s lead in critical sound, ANC and ecosystem optimization categories appeal to the general wireless buyer.

That said, Samsung delivers an impressive experience as well for almost half the cost. Their rich audio and improved technical abilities make the Galaxy Buds Pro a value choice – especially for Android owners wanting tighter integration.

Ultimately, choose the AirPods Pro if you want the absolute best noise-cancelling earbuds with stunning sound and don‘t mind paying extra. Go for the Galaxy Buds Pro if good battery life or waterproofing matters more, or you want to save money over maxing performance. Either way, you’re getting top-tier truly wireless earbuds sure to please.

Still Deciding Between These Wireless Earbuds?

Hopefully this guide covered all you wanted to know comparing the Galaxy Buds Pro vs AirPods Pro. Still debating which model works for your lifestyle? Have a specific question I didn‘t address?

Leave a comment below and I‘m happy to provide personalized advice as you evaluate these awesome wireless earbuds!

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