OnePlus recently released new true wireless buds, the OnePlus Buds Pro 2, co-created with Dynaudio. If you haven’t heard of the speaker manufacturer Dynaudio, it’s probably because of how ridiculously expensive their products are.
The two brands have put together one of the best AirPod-style headphones for Android we’ve used to date. They seem to have it all: premium audio, noise cancellation, customization galore, a strong battery, and an IP55 rating. The biggest catch is that the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 only have an app available for Android.
The OnePlus Buds Pro 2 features the Apple AirPods stem design we’re used to seeing everywhere, but rather than glossy white, they’re matte black with glossy gunmetal black stems. In comparison to AirPods, They look sophisticated and edgy with this darkened finish combo.
Besides obsidian black, the earbuds are available in Arbor Green in the same matte/glossy combo design. The earbuds come with three oval “antibacterial” ear tips for a snug seal.
We really liked the OnePlus Buds 2 Pro’s case for its size and usability. The charging case sports a clamshell form-factor and it’s a little thinner than your average case. We found it ideal for pocketing. A good magnetic seal keeps the case closed, and magnets help easily lock the buds into place.
The OnePlus Buds 2 Pro’s charging case houses a USB-C port for charging and also supports wireless charging.
Software and features
The OnePlus Buds Pro 2 are IP55 water and dustproof; even the case is IPX4 water-resistant, making them great for the gym.
You control the headphones by squeezing the stems. The squeezing method is suitable for preventing accidental changes but requires a bit of precision to use. There are no tap controls or buttons.
Rather than a quick swipe or press, you must line up both fingers on the stem and ensure you don’t pull the bud out. It takes muscle memory to get used to this kind of operation, so it’s not quite an ideal control method.
That said, you can at least configure what the single, double, and triple presses and holds do for each bud using the accompanying app.
The battery life for the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 is excellent in real-life. You’ll get 6 hours from the buds with ANC on and 9 hours without ANC. The case adds 25 to 39 hours of power.
Thankfully, just 10 minutes of USB-C charging will give the buds 3 hours of juice.
The sound quality of the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 buds immediately blew us away. The audio quality and fullness of the sound are very noticeable. They’re the best headphones we’ve heard that mimic AirPod’s stem design.
The OnePlus Buds Pro 2 earbuds pack serious oomph and energy, with bass you can feel. Mids are incredibly detailed and clear. There are dual drivers with an 11mm woofer and a 6mm tweeter.
OnePlus has a “Golden Sound” feature that tunes the buds to your ear shape and hearing characteristics. You take a hearing test for a few minutes, resulting in a sound profile that actually sounds better.
The sound profile is pretty amazing and effective. You’ll get to see how well your ears hear different frequencies — the buds then compensate for this and give your ears a more balanced experience.
There are also EQ settings with presets and a custom equalizer. We loved the default “balanced” preset, but the equalizer is fun to see if you can find a more enjoyable tuning.
Ultimately, the audio quality on the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 is a perfect combination of hardware and software. OnePlus clearly put a lot of emphasis and engineering into making the audio sound as premium and personalized as possible. It’s worth noting that Dynaudio is an ultra-high-end audio brand that probably would only co-brand something that’s true high fidelity.
The active noise cancelling on the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 works and is noticeable, but it’s on the lighter side. To that effect, it’s clean and natural but doesn’t silence as much background noise as more premium buds, like Sony’s WF-1000XM4. This didn’t bother us so much, as it cuts out a fair amount of background noise without making you deaf to your environment.
Ultimately, we found the ANC on the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 to light enough that we’d usually want it on all the time. You can choose between smart, mild, moderate, and max, which gives you plenty of control.
Microphone and call quality
Call quality on the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 is pretty clean and clear. It’s much better than most of the competition and only suffers from a little distortion. The headphones come with three microphones on each bud that helps remove a fair amount of background noise and helps to focus on your voice.
All in all, we definitely recommend the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 for phone calls.
Using the OnePlus Buds Pro 2’s with Android is relatively smooth and seamless. Android supports Google Fast Pair and doesn’t actually require you to download an app to use the headphones.
That said, you’ll need to install and use the HeyMelody app to unlock all of the features of the OnePlus Buds Pro 2. The app allows you to create a custom sound profile. The app also has a spatial audio mode that you can enable to help make the audio experience more immersive.
OnePlus Buds Pro 2 review verdict
OnePlus might be best known for their smartphones, but they’ve knocked it out of the park with the OnePlus Buds Pro 2.
All in all, we love the OnePlus Buds Pro 2. That is because they offer rich, high-fidelity sound quality, they’re comfortable, and enjoyable to use and even in loud environments they perform quite well for phone calls. Their case is sleek and offers lots of extra battery life. We also appreciate how the earbuds auto-play, pause, and shut noise cancelling on the buds if you remove one earbud.
Our biggest gripe for the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 is the lack of an iOS app. The Android app is fantastic at getting the most out of these headphones and personalizing them to your ears, but you can’t do that with an iPhone. The other significant caveat is that the active noise cancellation is on the lighter side of what exists for premium buds.
The OnePlus Buds Pro 2 wireless earbuds are priced at $179.99, which we find very reasonable. After all, this has always been OnePlus’s goal – to undercut premium brands with comparable technology for a lower price.
The OnePlus Buds Pro 2 are currently available from Amazon in Obsidian Black or Arbor Green.