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Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro: Which should you buy?

The newly-minted Galaxy Pro take on Google's refreshed buds.
By

Published onMay 17, 2023

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
MSRP: $229.99
Check price
Positives
Good sound quality
Excellent noise canceling
Extreme IPX7 water resistance
Comfortable design
Most important software features available on Android
First of the Galaxy Buds to have properly sensitive touch panels
Negatives
Inconsistent head tracking
Short battery life for flagship buds
Poor microphone quality
Mobile app lacks a custom EQ
Many Samsung-exclusive features
Google Pixel Buds Pro
MSRP: $199.00
Check price
Positives
ANC with transparency mode
Hands-free Google Assistant
Above average battery life
Water-resistant case and buds
Fast pair and multipoint connectivity
Custom EQ (after updates)
Negatives
No aptX
Fit is a bit loose for some people
Microphone underperforms in noisy environments

Samsung and Google are big names in the Android world, and each company offers its signature wireless earbuds. In our Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro comparison, we’ll address the differences between both flagship earbuds, and highlight their key features. Both earbuds come with useful mobile apps and great active noise canceling (ANC), but it’s time to find out which are best for your needs.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro: At a glance

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro and Google Pixel Buds Pro are both flagship earbuds, but there are some marked differences between them.

  • The Galaxy Buds 2 Pro cost $229, and the Pixel Buds Pro cost $199.
  • The Pixel Buds Pro have an IPX4 water-resistant rating, while the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro have an IPX7 water-resistant rating.
  • The Galaxy Buds 2 Pro and Pixel Buds Pro have certain features reserved for Samsung and Google smartphones, respectively.
  • The Pixel Buds Pro support fewer Bluetooth audio codecs than the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro.
  • The Pixel Buds app lets listeners equalize how the earbuds sound, while the Galaxy Wearable app only provides EQ presets to choose from.
  • The Galaxy Buds 2 Pro have notably better ANC than the Pixel Buds Pro.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro: Specs

Galaxy Buds 2 ProPixel Buds Pro
Dimensions
Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
Earbud: 19.9 x 21.6 x 18.7mm
Case: 50.1 x 50.2 x 27.7mm
Pixel Buds Pro
Earbud: 23.7 x 22.3 x 22mm
Case: 63.2 x 25 x 50mm
Weights
Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
Earbud: 5.6g
Case: 39.6g
Pixel Buds Pro
Earbud: 6.2g
Case: 62.4g
Bluetooth connectivity
Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
Bluetooth 5.3
SBC, AAC, Samsung Scalable Codec
Pixel Buds Pro
Bluetooth 5.0
SBC, AAC
Water resistance
Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
IPX7
Pixel Buds Pro
Earbuds: IPX4
Case: IPX2
Listening time
Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
5 hours with ANC, 8 hours without ANC
With case: 18 hours with ANC, 29 hours without ANC
Pixel Buds Pro
7 hours with ANC, 11 hours without ANC
With case: 20 hours with ANC, 31 hours without ANC
Charging
Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
USB-C
Wireless
Pixel Buds Pro
USB-C
Wireless
Speakers and microphones
Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
2-Way Woofer and Tweeter
Three microphones
Pixel Buds Pro
Custom-designed 11 mm dynamic speaker driver
Three microphones
Device compatibility
Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
Android 7.0 or later
1.5GB of RAM or more
iOS: Bluetooth only
Windows 10: Galaxy Buds app
TV: Samsung 2022 TVs and later
Pixel Buds Pro
Android 6.0 or later
iOS: Bluetooth only
Laptop/Desktop: Bluetooth only

Colors
Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
White, Graphite, Bora Purple
Pixel Buds Pro
Charcoal, Fog, Coral, Lemongrass

The Galaxy Buds 2 Pro and Pixel Buds Pro are standard earbuds free of stems, wings, and hooks. While both sets of earbuds are water-resistant, the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro are much more durable and have an IPX7 rating to show for it. With this rating, the buds can withstand a fumble into a puddle and be no worse for the wear. I can’t necessarily say the same thing about the IPX4-rated Pixel Buds Pro, which can endure water splashes from any direction. The Pixel Buds Pro case, on the other hand, is slightly water-resistant (IPX2), which isn’t the case for the Buds 2 Pro case.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Pixel Buds Pro laying next to charging cases
Kris Carlon / Android Authority

The Pixel Buds Pro support hands-free, “Hey, Google” on most Android devices. Meanwhile, you can only say, “Hey, Bixby” and get a response with the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro connected to a Samsung phone. Other software features differentiate the Pixel Buds Pro from the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro, too. With the Pixel Buds app, listeners can create a custom EQ and play with five bands to fine-tune the sound. I loved this feature as it massively improved the Pixel Buds Pro sound quality compared to its default settings. You can also connect the Pixel Buds Pro to two devices simultaneously, while the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro only support auto device switching between Galaxy hardware.

Later this summer, the Galaxy Wearable app will receive some unique features that the Pixel Buds app lacks. We will see enhanced ambient sound for the Buds 2 Pro. With this, listeners can choose between five levels of amplification in audio passthrough mode, and they can adjust the levels of each earbud to accommodate different hearing abilities per ear.

The custom equalizer in the Pixel Buds app lets you tweak the sound to your liking, which you can't do with the Galaxy Wearable app.

Both the Pixel Buds Pro and Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro have features exclusive to their respective handsets. When you use the Pixel Buds Pro with a Pixel 6 or 7 series phone, you get spatial audio with head tracking. Only the Pixel Buds Pro work with Google Translate directly through the earbuds, too, which is an excellent feature for globe trotters.

Pairing the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro with a modern Samsung phone also unlocks spatial audio with head tracking. Galaxy Buds 2 Pro share the same Bluetooth codec support as the Pixel Buds Pro (SBC and AAC) with the addition of the Samsung Seamless Codec. You need a Samsung device running One UI 4.0 or later to use this codec. While it streams 24-bit audio, the main tangible benefit is decreased latency. Ideally, I’d like to see aptX support on both buds. If they had aptX, I wouldn’t have noticed audio-visual lag when I streamed YouTube videos during their reviews.

Most other features are similar between these earbuds. Both have touch controls with minimal customization through their apps, and neither Google nor Samsung supplies an iOS app for its flagship buds.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro: Noise canceling

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro have active noise canceling than the Pixel Buds Pro. If this is the main reason you’re buying earbuds, I recommend going for Samsung’s earbuds. When I tested the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro’s noise canceling, I could barely hear my apartment’s A/C unit or coffee grinder. To be fair, the Pixel Buds Pro also made these devices sound quieter, but Google’s ANC couldn’t quite handle the lower frequencies like Samsung’s.

A chart compares the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro noise cancelling to the Google Pixel Buds Pro, revealing the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro has better ANC.

Let’s look at our noise canceling comparison chart to visualize the differences in performance. Here, the cyan line represents the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro, and the pink dashed line represents the Pixel Buds Pro. The higher the line, the quieter the earbuds render a given frequency. Technical stuff aside, you can see how the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro attenuates much more noise than the Pixel Buds Pro from 20-120Hz. This covers those sub-bass frequencies you’d hear from a plane engine.

To get the best ANC, play around with each set of ear tips. Samsung and Google provide three pairs of silicone ear tips for their buds, and an ear tip fit test in their apps. This way, you can ensure that you’re using the correct sizes. A loose or poor fit will let background noise in and potentially degrade sound quality.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro: Sound quality

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro and Google Pixel Buds Pro earbuds for size comparison.
Lily Katz / Android Authority

For the best sound out of the box, get the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro. These earbuds have a healthy bass boost but don’t over-emphasize the treble like the Pixel Buds Pro. Google’s earbuds boost the sub-bass and treble more than Samsung’s, which is a bit too dramatic for my preferences. Not everyone will mind how the Pixel Buds Pro sound, but again, those who do can rely on Google’s five-band EQ to tone it down.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro: Microphone quality

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro microphone relays voices much louder than the Pixel Buds Pro. Both earbuds make voices sound clear, though I’d argue the Pixel Buds Pro edge the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro out a bit regarding clarity.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro microphone demo (Ideal conditions):

Google Pixel Buds Pro microphone demo (Ideal conditions):

The same rings true for the office condition demos below: the Pixel Buds Pro mic makes voices sound a bit quieter and clearer than the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro. Each set of earbuds suppresses background noise, but I found the Pixel Buds Pro to sound more pleasant than the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro in sub-optimal conditions. Take a listen for yourself.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro microphone demo (Office conditions):

Google Pixel Buds Pro microphone demo (Office conditions):

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro: Battery life

Google claims the batteries in the Pixel Buds Pro last seven hours with ANC. You can also net up to 20 hours of battery with the charging case. Disabling ANC lets the buds go for up to 11 hours—31 hours total with the charging case. Samsung claims the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro can go for up to five hours with noise canceling enabled. Combining the standalone battery life with the charging case totals 18 hours of playtime. Without ANC, battery life climbs to 29 hours.

We subjected the Pixel Buds Pro and Galaxy Buds 2 Pro to our standardized battery testing, where we play music peaking at 75dB (SPL) until the batteries deplete. Here are the results for each set of earbuds:

  • Galaxy Buds 2 Pro, ANC on: Four hours, 50 minutes.
  • Pixel Buds Pro, ANC on: Seven hours, six minutes.

Both USB-C and wireless charging are options for either model. With the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro, you can charge the case on top of a compatible Samsung device.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro: Price

  • Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro: $229
  • Google Pixel Buds Pro: $199

The Galaxy Buds 2 Pro come in White, Graphite, or Bora Purple and cost $229. The Google Pixel Buds Pro come in Charcoal, Fog, Coral, and Lemongrass and sell for $199. You can find either set of earbuds on sale throughout the year or purchase them renewed.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro vs Google Pixel Buds Pro: Which should you buy?

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro and Google Pixel Buds Pro next to each other.
Lily Katz / Android Authority

Choosing between the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro and Pixel Buds Pro boils down to what phone you own. With Google’s earbuds, you get more benefits across the Android operating system than with Samsung’s, including “Hey, Google” and multipoint connectivity. And let’s not forget my personal favorite: a custom equalizer.

All that being said, the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro are still great earbuds for Android, they’re just more tailored for Samsung phones than the Pixel Buds are for Pixel phones. If you own a Samsung smartphone, you’ll get more mileage from the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro. Further, it doesn’t matter which operating system you favor: Samsung’s earbuds have better ANC than the Pixel Buds Pro.

Which earbuds would you rather own?

201 votes

As with most flagship earbuds, the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro and Pixel Buds Pro share more similarities than differences. If you like switching between Android devices of various brands, I recommend the Pixel Buds Pro. However, if you know you’ll stick with Samsung’s devices for years, invest in the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro. No matter what, you won’t be disappointed.

See price at Amazon
Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
22%off
Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro
Comfortable fit
Enhanced noise-cancelling technology
Satisfying battery life
See price at Amazon
Google Pixel Buds Pro
Google Pixel Buds Pro
Active noise-cancelling
Android integration
Google Assistant features

FAQs

The Galaxy Buds 2 Pro have an IPX7 rating and can survive a dip in the pool. However, diving below one meter or staying submerged for more than 30 minutes can compromise the buds and break them.

To use Google Translate with the Pixel Buds, you need the latest version of the Google Translate app. You can then ask Google to translate a conversation from your native language to the unknown one. After that, pass your phone to the person you want to speak with until the conversation is done.

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