Pixel Buds Pro: finally with ANC | Test and Review

Pixel Buds Pro: finally with ANC | Test and Review

Pixel Buds Pro

It took several months, even years, but finally Google is also offering a pair of headphones with ANC, active noise cancellation, the Pixel Buds Pro. Previous models, such as the first version of Pixel Buds or the revamped A-Series version, they still represent a good pair of earphones, especially for those who have an Android smartphone or, even better, a Pixel model. However, while all the other manufacturers brought active noise cancellation into the hands of all of us, just think that the AirPods Pro were unveiled three years ago and Apple is certainly not quick to bring new technologies to market, there is no doubt that Google took it very easy. This premise has a specific purpose: after all this time we expect a high quality product, consequently we will be very strict in judging the ANC qualities of the Pixel Pro, especially after Google said that inside these earphones there is a custom audio processor with six cores and 11 mm drivers made "to measure" to give the best.

How the Pixel Buds Pro are made How to wear them Audio quality Quality Noise cancellation Better with Pixel, less with Apple Autonomy Verdict

How the Pixel Buds Pro are made

Aesthetically Google did not bring innovations, in fact Pixel Buds Pro are practically the copy of the other Pixel Buds models, starting from the case, the classic and small "egg", with a USB-C port for charging in the lower part and the cover that holds and is opens very easily. A button, behind, allows you to activate the pairing mode, but if you are the first to use them as soon as you open the lid.

What hasn't changed is the difficulty in extracting them from the case, since the portion of the earphone that comes out of the case is minimal and you will need to grip them with your fingertips. We are not faced with a problem, but if you have large fingers and are used to taking them off and putting them in the case several times a day, other models will be more comfortable. | ); }
They are IPX4 certified, so they are good for sports, but the case is IPX2 only, so it is best to keep it in a protected place. Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity, and the ability to connect them simultaneously to two Bluetooth devices.

As with the other Pixel Buds, they integrate the Google voice assistant, always available by simply calling it up with "Hey google".

How to wear them

The design is completely in-ear, so you have to insert them in the ear and you can rotate them to lay them inside the ear canal. As with all other in-ear models, it is important to find the right size headset in order to completely close the ear canal. In my case, the shape, size of the earphone and the headset do a good job, but we cannot guarantee that this is the case for everyone. | ); }

The touch sensitive surface works quite well, even if we happened, especially in the first few days, to send incorrect inputs. With one, two or three touches you can manage music playback or telephone calls; by keeping your finger pressed on the surface, you can switch from transparent mode to noise cancellation mode. You can also control the volume by swiping up or down. There is a proximity sensor that indicates when the headset will be worn or not, however it may happen that if you have worn a single headset, handling the other one, it still detects inputs, which would have been better to disable when not worn.

Audio quality

Once again we find ourselves in the situation where the audio quality is good enough on par with many other models out there. In recent years, making a difference on audio quality is very difficult, since the small nuances that may exist between one model and another are difficult to perceive by most users. There are no particular smudges on these Pixel Buds Pro, the yield is quite linear, the bass is there but they are never too invasive, if we really wanted to see details, it lacks a bit of precision in the medium-high. But as mentioned, these are details that most people will probably less notice.

Supported codecs are AAC and SBC only.

This is true both for music and for audio in telephone calls. Also good microphones, in fact we have never received any kind of negative comment from our interlocutors throughout the test period.

Noise-canceling quality

This is the point where, as we have anticipated, we feel we are more stringent than usual in the evaluation. The ANC of the Pixel Buds Pro works well, but does not reach the performance of, for example, the Sony WF-1000XM4 or even the AirPods Pro. Actually even the older Bose QuietComfort can do better, but the latter are bigger and plug the ear better, being more invasive.

You will be able to effectively eliminate the continuous and homogeneous background noises that occupy the medium-low and low part of the audio spectrum, such as the noise of an air conditioner or the noise inside the cabin of a train or airplane. For example, while we were doing this review, the noise of the keys returned inside the headphones more than what happens with other models, while every now and then we also heard the noise of an airplane passing over the house. It is difficult for ANC headphones to be able to intervene on all frequencies with the same effectiveness, we know, today some models, for example those mentioned above, are able to do a little better.

In short, the Pixel Buds Pro work quite well, but we expected better after all these years of waiting. We hope that Google can improve performance with a firmware update.

Better with Pixel, less with Apple

As with all earphones developed by a brand, especially in the case of Google, these Pixel Buds Pro give them their best when paired with a pixel smartphone , or in any case to an Android terminal. They can also be safely used with an iPhone, but you lose the application, the ability to customize commands, equalization and all future functions that may be added.


On the other hand, the result of the battery life is surprising. With ANC activated you will be able to use them, for a single charge, up to 6/7 hours, while disabling active noise cancellation you will surpass 10 hours. The case allows you to recharge the earphones almost completely for about three times; this extends the autonomy to about 20 hours with ANC and to about 30 hours without ANC.

You can recharge the case via USB-C or Wireless, and in 5 minutes of fast charging, you will gain about an hour of autonomy.


Pixel Buds Pro cost 219 euros, slightly more than the Sony WF-1000XM4, slightly less than the Bose QuietComfort, definitely more than the Sony LinkBuds Yes, to give you an idea of ​​which earphones they can be compared with.

The audio is good, but it is no better than many other headsets. Noise cancellation is fine for classic background noises, continuous and homogeneous, which you often want to eliminate; while they should improve on other more discontinuous noises, sounds that can be had in a city or an office. In this context, other models know how to do better. The autonomy, on the other hand, is very good, leading them to the top of the standings, especially considering their size.

On balance, therefore, Pixel Buds Pro are promoted for all those who have a Pixel smartphone, since after all, they do not have big flaws, they are the first earphones with ANC from Google and with a Pixel they give the best of They. It becomes more difficult, however, to recommend them with your eyes closed for everyone else. They are a valid alternative for those with an Android smartphone, and here the evaluation should be more related to autonomy and budget. While they are not recommended for those with an iPhone, Apple users should consider, in addition to the AirPods Pro, other models we have mentioned in this article.

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