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Beats Powerbeats Pro earbuds on a book.
Adam Molina / Android Authority
aa2020 recommended

Beats Powerbeats Pro review: Beat it, AirPods

The Beats Powerbeats Pro are still some of the best true wireless workout earbuds you can get.

Published onApril 14, 2022

aa2020 recommended

Beats Powerbeats Pro

AirPods may be the go-to for iPhone users, but the Powerbeats Pro are the better option for your Apple phone — particularly for active users. The earbuds are IPX4 sweat-resistant, provide a secure fit, and support AAC. Plus, you can listen for just shy of 11 hours before needing to charge them.

What we like

Bluetooth 5.0, Class 1
Apple's H1 chip allows for much greater flexibility
Sound quality
Secure fit

What we don't like

De-emphasized mids
Isolation not great
aa2020 recommended

Beats Powerbeats Pro

AirPods may be the go-to for iPhone users, but the Powerbeats Pro are the better option for your Apple phone — particularly for active users. The earbuds are IPX4 sweat-resistant, provide a secure fit, and support AAC. Plus, you can listen for just shy of 11 hours before needing to charge them.

The best workout earbuds for iPhone owners are the Beats Powerbeats Pro. These true wireless earbuds use Apple’s H1 chip, feature an excellent ear hook design, and are water-resistant. Android users can enjoy these earbuds too and their Class 1 Bluetooth 5.0 support along with angled nozzles that are designed to stay in during your most extreme workouts.

Beats Powerbeats Pro
About this Beats Powerbeats Pro review: This review comes from the audio experts at our sister site SoundGuys. Check out their in-depth take on the Beats Powerbeats Pro.

Update, April 2022: This Beats Powerbeats Pro review was updated to include standardized microphone demos, address adding Find My support in an update, and include the Beats Fit Pro and Sennheiser CX Plus True Wireless as alternatives.

What are the Beats Powerbeats Pro like?

Beats Powerbeats Pro in charging case, aerial view.

These are how true wireless earbuds should have been designed from the start. The unobtrusive ear hooks take the pressure off the ear canal for a more balanced, stable fit. Additionally, the dedicated nozzles make these sound infinitely better than the AirPods (3rd generation).

Battery life is impeccable: these provide just under 11 hours of playback on a single charge.

The earbuds sport a minimalist design and come in four colors: black, ivory, navy, and moss. Don’t let the clean look fool you, though; these are packed to the gills with sensors. Both housings have proximity sensors that automatically pause media playback when the earbuds are removed. Plus, the microphone array uses accelerometers to detect when you’re speaking. The same sensors automatically power the earbuds off when dormant.

Start here: Headphone buying guide

Controls are a bit different than the AirPods as the Powerbeats Pro have tactile volume rockers for each earbud while holding the “b” symbol lets you deny incoming calls. These also benefit from Apple’s H1 chip, so hands-free Siri access is enabled.

How long do the Beats Powerbeats Pro last?

A picture of the Beats Powerbeats Pro in a man's' hand.

The H1 chip is also responsible for the Powerbeats Pro’s insane battery life. Listeners get 10 hours, 52 minutes of playback on a single charge when used with an iPhone XS Max, which is remarkable for true wireless technology. The case holds an additional 1.5 charges, allowing for more than 24 hours of playback. It also supports fast charging whereby five minutes in the case affords 1.5 hours of playback.

Although the Powerbeats Pro aren’t waterproof, they are IPX4-certified. You can’t submerge them, but they should withstand any terrestrial workouts. If you’re an iPhone-using athlete, these are the best workout earbuds you can get. The fit is stable and integrated volume controls can’t be found on some competitors’ earbuds. That said, if you prioritize durability and value, there are better buys out there.

How do the Powerbeats Pro sound?

A frequency response chart for the Beats Powerbeats Pro true wireless workout earbuds.
Lily Katz / Android Authority

The Powerbeats Pro support the AAC Bluetooth codec and sound good. Beats’ bass-heavy sound is recognizable yet inoffensive. Much of the bass response is attributed to the nozzles and ear tips. By creating a proper seal, outside noise is less likely to undermine low-end reproduction. This makes your music more clear.

The distinct nozzles make the Powerbeats Pro sound remarkably better than the AirPods (3rd generation).

Highs also receive a nice boost, which makes treble notes easier to hear above vocals and general instrumental noise. Vocals and string instruments sound about three-quarters as loud as bass and treble notes. While this doesn’t matter much for athletes who just want a strong beat to follow, it may be aggravating for casual listening. Most consumers will thoroughly enjoy the Powerbeats Pro’s sound signature, though.

Can you use the Beats Powerbeats Pro for phone calls?

If you’re taking calls with the Powerbeats Pro, voice transmission is clear enough. Those with particularly low voices will sound a little muffled. Even then, however, the inaccuracy is bearable. Wind noise is filtered out fairly well by the downward-facing microphones, making these great for on-the-go calls.

Beats Powerbeats Pro microphone demo (ideal):

Beats Powerbeats Pro microphone demo (wind):

How does the microphone sound to you?

269 votes

Do the Beats Powerbeats Pro receive new features in updates?

Yes, updates can often add new features and improve your experience with these earbuds. With iOS 14, the Beats Powerbeats Pro can now automatically switch between an iPhone and iPad, so long as each device runs iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 or greater, respectively. If you’re listening to music on your iPhone but start playing a movie on your iPad, the Beats Powerbeats Pro will seamlessly switch from one device to the other. All devices in question must be associated with the same iCloud account in order for this to work.

iOS 14.5 also brought Find My support to Beats Powerbeats Pro, so you can now locate lost buds using an iPhone.

Beats Powerbeats Pro review: The verdict

Beats Powerbeats Pro earbuds on a book.
Adam Molina / Android Authority

The Powerbeats Pro remedy the AirPods’ (3rd Generation) most offensive flaws. Fit is not an issue and bass reproduction actually sounds good. That said, they are more expensive than the third-generation AirPods with a standard charging case. Athletes and anyone sick of having their iPhone earbuds fall out of their ears may find the trade-off justifiable. If you can stomach the Powerbeats Pro’s price, they’re absolutely worth it.

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Beats Powerbeats Pro
The best Beats around.
For workouts and exercising, the Beats Powerbeats Pro are some of the best true wireless earbuds you can buy.

Beats Powerbeats Pro alternatives

Beats Powerbeats wireless workout earbuds tire

The Beats Fit Pro ($199) are a good option if you don’t want to be tied to an OS, since they work equally well on Android and Apple devices. The Fit Pro also has active noise-cancelling and spatial audio, making it a great option for those who want the features of AirPods Pro. For a more affordable option, you may want to grab the Beats Flex ($70) instead. Listeners who want to stick with a pair of true wireless earphones with hooks that wrap around the ear should look into the JBL Endurance Peak II ($99). These earphones feature an IPX7 rating, secure fit, full mono listening, and comprehensive onboard controls.

The Apple AirPods Pro ($249) noise-cancelling true wireless earbuds are appealing, too: they include a wireless charging case, feature dedicated nozzles, and are jam-packed with sensor technology. The ANC technology can’t outperform the Sony WF-1000XM4 ($279) when it comes to low-end attenuation, but nonetheless, the IPX4 sweat-resistant AirPods Pro are the best Apple total wireless earbuds to date.

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro in hand
Chase Bernath / Android Authority

If you own a Samsung Galaxy smartphone, we recommend the Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro ($199). These earphones have an IPX7 rating and feature very good noise-cancelling for the price. They even have Samsung 360 Audio, hands-free Bixby access, and automatic voice detection, making them a great choice if you crave the luxury of Apple products but don’t care for the branding.

If you want a high-quality pair of earbuds with aptX support, the Sennheiser CX Plus True Wireless ($189) are the way to go. They have great noise-cancelling and sound quality, an IPX4 water-resistance rating, and a good app for adjusting EQ, remapping tap controls, updating firmware, and more.