Anker-owned audio brand Soundcore unveiled the Liberty Air 2 Pro true wireless earbuds at a virtual event in mid-January. The earbuds are equipped with features like targeted ANC, numerous mics, and wireless charging. Taking the charging case into account, Soundcore states that the buds can provide up to 26 hours of playback.
Successors to the Liberty Air 2 and Liberty 2 Pro, the Liberty Air 2 Pro offers completely customizable audio. Users get the opportunity to personalize their earbuds to their own personal sound preferences through the companion app. Priced at $129.99, the earbuds are a good bargain on paper. Today's review will assess whether the touted specs translate well in real life.
|Dimensions||4.61 x 2.4 x 6.73 inches|
|Bluetooth 5.0 | USB Type-C | Qi wireless charging|
|Battery||5V, 55mAh per earbud, 500mAh charging case| Up to 7 hrs, 26 hrs with charging case|
|Speaker||11mm PureNote drivers|
|Frequency response||20Hz to 20,000Hz|
|Supported profiles||AVRCP, A2DP, HFP|
Soundcore's Liberty Air 2 Pro earbuds have a stylish design and come in four shades: Onyx Black, Titanium White, Sapphire Blue, and Crystal Pink. For this review, Anker sent me the Crystal Pink option which has a lovely rose gold colouring. The case and buds are made of similar material, they are very smooth and feel nice to the touch.
I quite like the way the lid of the case opens, it slides upwards instead of swivelling open. Each earbud has touch panels on the top, where the small brand logo is located. The touch controls on them are pretty standard but can be changed completely with the companion mobile app. Soundcore really focused on customizability with this product and I'm very happy with that. However, I did find that the panels were not as responsive as some of the other earbuds that I've used.
The charging case has three LED lights to indicate the battery status of the earbuds on one side. There is also a power button on the opposite side, next to the USB Type-C charging port. The case supports Qi wireless charging which adds functionality.
There are nine ear tip sizes included in the box which is pretty generous. Users can choose between XXXS, XXS, XS, S, M, M+, L, L+ and XL size variants. Changing the ear tips to match your preference is very important as it can transform your entire user experience, especially for truly wireless earbuds.
Unfortunately, no matter what size ear tips you choose, the wear experience with the Soundcore buds is very unpleasant. The shape of the earbuds' heads was very uncomfortable after a while and I had to remove them periodically to relieve my ears. It was almost like having strange bulbous hooks lodged into my ears.
If the ear tips aren't changed, users may have issues with the earbuds falling out or being too tight. In my case, both issues occurred. When I didn't push them is in as much as they're supposed to go, they fell out. But when I pushed them further in, the buds were quite painful. I think it depends on the size of your ears so for the sake of completion I had my husband use the Liberty Air 2 Pro as well. He has large ears and most earphones tend to fall out. In his case, they fell off a couple of times even with the correct ear tip size but when he pushed them deeper to make them stay put, it hurt.
The problem lies with the design of the heads of the buds I would say. They are quite chunky and don't sit nicely when worn. People who feel uncomfortable wearing such audio devices usually don't push them in as much as it is painful, therefore they fall out. Either way, the experience is pretty bad and not suitable for long-term use.
The Liberty Air 2 Pro has targeted active noise cancellation, 6 microphones, HearID for personalized sound, and a companion app that lets you customize almost everything. There are several presets for users to choose from in the app. These presets allow them to let certain sounds pass through, such as voices, or no sound at all.
Along with targeted ANC, the multitude of mics make the experience of online meetings and conference calls much better than usual. I did not have to worry about stray background noises such as my cats meowing or the loud whirring of the ceiling fan. The Liberty Air 2 Pro made for an excellent work-from-home companion.
Aside from office use, the Soundcore true wireless earbuds were pretty average. Don't get me wrong, the sound quality is pretty decent. Highs and lows sound good, and bass is okay. The audio quality is like a staple food that does the job, like rice. It isn't bad and you can mess around with the different equalizer and HearID settings to alter it to your liking, but it just doesn't excel.
On paper, the wireless audio device has a 500mAh battery which supposedly lasts for up to 26 hours overall. Soundcore claims that the earbuds and the case altogether can be charged back up to full power in two hours.
In my testing period, the Liberty Air 2 Pro lasted for five days with moderate usage. This included attending several long calls and meetings each day, a few hours of music, watching a whole two-hour movie, and consumption of other audio-visual media. I was satisfied with the battery life as this matched the audio brand's claims more or less.
Once completely drained of power, the entire charging case inclusive of the dead earbuds took me a few minutes shy of two hours to charge. In terms of charge time, I found that the Liberty Air 2 Pro to be consistent with its spec sheet.
On its website, Soundcore recommends the Liberty Air 2 Pro for 'commute, travel, workout and business calls'. After weeks of usage, I think these earbuds fit the official description to a T. They're great for calls and virtual meetings where crystal clear audio is nearly essential.
Outside of a professional work setting, the earbuds get the job done in a neat and tidy manner. But for me, I think the Liberty Air 2 Pro lack pizzazz. There's nothing spectacular about the audio quality, it's best described as just plain decent.
For an asking price of $129.99, I think the Soundcore Liberty Air 2 Pro provide good value for money. Users can expect a nice and simple experience with plenty of options to tailor the sound quality to their liking. It won't blow anyone's socks off, but it will not disappoint either.
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