Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro Quick Review: Excellent Water-Resistant Earbuds With ANC
February 25, 2021 Andrew Cheng

Wireless earbuds with active noise cancellation have really taken off in the past couple of years, and it can be a little overwhelming to decide on which particular earbud will serve your needs the best. Well, if you want a pair of water-resistant earbuds with good audio quality and noise cancellation, look no further than the Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro.

Retailing at RM799, the Galaxy Buds Pro is not awfully expensive either. In fact, taking into account its feature set, you’re actually getting a lot of value for your money here. Not quite convinced? Then keep on reading this review.

What It Is

The Galaxy Buds Pro takes some design cues from last year’s Galaxy Buds Live, but instead of an open-air design, the Pro model has an in-ear design for a more secure fit and better noise cancellation. Aside from that, the Buds Pro – again, which goes for RM799 – is also priced quite closely to the RM699 Buds Live.

On top of that, the Galaxy Buds Pro is also IPX7 water-resistant, which allows it to be submerged up to 1m of fresh water for 30 minutes. Basically, you can use these earbuds for your workouts with no issue at all. Not many wireless earbuds have an IPX7 certification, which definitely gives the Buds Pro an edge in this regard.

In terms of battery life, Samsung says that the Galaxy Buds Pro can last up to five hours on a single charge, while the charging case can provide an additional 13 hours of use. With ANC switched off, the battery life can be stretched up to eight hours for the earbuds, and 20 hours more with the charging case.

But can the Buds Pro really deliver this level of battery life? I’ll get to that further down this review.

The Good Stuff

The fact that the Galaxy Buds Pro is IPX7 water-resistant is what I personally consider to be these earbuds’ best feature. As I’ve mentioned, not many wireless earbuds have this certification, and it’s amazing to know that I can put on the Buds Pro and start working out (and wash it afterwards) without worrying that I’ll damage it.

Audio quality of the Galaxy Buds Pro is good as well. It is able to separate the different instruments in the guitar solo of Eagles’ Hotel California very well, and it has reasonably punchy bass as well. If you want even better bass response, you can set the equalizer to “bass boost.”

The active noise cancellation of the Galaxy Buds Pro is quite good as well. While it’s not quite on the same level as the Sony WF-1000XM3, it can still filter out ambient noise effectively. With ANC activated and my favourite tunes playing, the outside world simply disappears.

Comfort is also a strong point for the Galaxy Buds Pro. It’s easy to get a good, snug fit with these earbuds, and they’re quite lightweight as well. Three different sizes of silicone ear tips are also provided with the Buds Pro, so you should have no issue to get the right fit.

Another feature of the Galaxy Buds Pro that I absolutely love is the “voice detect” feature. When I start speaking, the Buds Pro will automatically let in ambient noise so that I can have a conversation. It’s similar to the “Speak-to-Chat” feature on the Sony WH-1000XM4, but that’s a pair of wireless headphones – not many earbuds offer this very convenient feature.

The Bad Stuff

Even though the Galaxy Buds Pro has a lot going for it, there are a number of shortcomings that are worth pointing out. For one, it is…surprisingly tricky to put on, no thanks to the slippery glossy finish of the earbuds. I even dropped them more times that I care to admit.

Battery life of the Galaxy Buds Pro isn’t particularly long either. While I did get close to Samsung’s quoted battery life of five hours, its competition offers far longer battery life. For what it’s worth, about five hours of use on a single charge is completely acceptable to me, but just know that other earbuds can provide better battery life.

Last but certainly not least is the finnicky touch controls of the Galaxy Buds Pro. Even when I’m just adjusting the fit of the earbuds, the Buds Pro would register it as a touch, pausing my music playback in the process. Granted, I can disable touch controls altogether within the app, but it would’ve been even better if there’s a way to adjust the sensitivity of the touch controls instead.

Is It Worth It?

Absolutely. For RM799, the Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro undercuts its competition while offering more features for the money. Not only is it IPX7 water-resistant – yes, I really think this is the Buds Pro’s best feature – it also has convenient features like voice detect, which is not offered by any other earbuds in the market now.

Again, the fact that the Galaxy Buds Pro offers all of these features for RM799 make it a very good buy, in my opinion. Samsung’s got a real winner here with the Buds Pro, and I can wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone that wants a pair of water-resistant wireless earbuds with good audio quality and active noise cancellation.