There are times when the renewal of a gadget does not bring any substantial change. And others, as in the case of the Samsung Galaxy Buds, the headphones take a necessary leap to become an expensive accessory but with many attractions . The Samsung Galaxy Buds + give a boost to a key feature, such as their autonomy. Nothing more and nothing less than 11 hours of use on a single charge (and 22 hours with the extra charge in the box) . The previous Buds stayed in six and thirteen hours respectively.
In addition, the performance of these headphones has also been improved during calls with the inclusion of a new external microphone so that your voice is heard more clearly. This was one of the points that left the most doubts in the first generation. What does hold up is AKG's hand in audio quality with a two-way speaker (a woofer to better cover the mids and lows and a tweeter for the highs).
But perhaps one of the biggest attractions of these headphones is their ease of use, especially if you have a Samsung mobile . As soon as you open the box, if you have a Samsung Galaxy mobile nearby you will see a message appear on the screen to pair the Samsung Galaxy Buds +. The plug and play thing has never been so real, and that these headphones do not have to be plugged in anywhere. This time I went ahead of the firm itself and got these headphones through the Samsung online store. Its official price is 180 euros . This has been my experience with the Samsung Galaxy Buds + after an intense week.
Data sheet Samsung Galaxy Buds +
|Colors||Blue, white and black|
|Size||- Headphones: 17.5 x 22.5 x 19.2 millimeters per headphone|
- Charging case: 38.8 x 70 x 26.5 millimeters
|Weight||- Headphones: 6.3 grams per headphone|
- Charging case: 39.6 grams
|Sensor||Accelerometer, Hall Sensor, Proximity Sensor|
|Battery||Eleven hours of music per earphone (85 milliamps)|
Eleven additional hours of music through charging box (270 milliamps)
|USB||USB type C|
|Microphones||Two external microphones and one internal microphone|
|Compatibility||From Android 5.0|
|Sound||AKG-billed sound, two-way alt speakers (tweeter and woofer)|
|Features||Automatic ear placement detection, One-touch activation of Google Assistant, Spotify support, track pause and play, ambient mode, search for headphones, equalizer|
|Type of load||Wireless charging|
|Smart assistant||Google Assistant, Bixby|
An outstanding autonomy
Admittedly, Samsung has done an excellent job on this point. Without making the box or the headphones bigger, the Korean company has managed to boost the autonomy from 1:00 p.m. of the original Buds to 10 p.m. of the Galaxy Buds + . The data is even more interesting if we only look at the headphones, in which the jump goes from six to eleven o'clock. Almost double the usage time per charge.
In these, it must be said that the 10 pm is a theoretical time that is very difficult to fulfill in normal use . In fact, my experience is closer to ten to twelve hours of total time with medium volume and regular call usage. All in all, I only had to charge the box once during the week that I have been with the Samsung Galaxy Buds +. Speaking of charging, another of the great advantages is the fast charging that it has. According to the firm's data, a 3-minute charge is enough to have an hour of music, and with 10 minutes the time rises to three hours .
The Samsung Galaxy Buds + are also compatible with wireless charging through the box, but in this case we will not be able to enjoy the same charging speed.
Take them out of the box and go
It is the great surprise that I have taken with these headphones. And it has to do with the fact that I am lucky enough to be testing the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra at the same time. I don't know if the same will happen with mid-range and entry-level Galaxy models, but with this terminal you just have to open the box of the headphones so that a message appears on the screen to synchronize this wearable. And that's it. No extra settings, no fiddling with Bluetooth. A great treat. Since then, and as with other models, it is enough to take them out of the box to activate them automatically.
These headphones make all their sense when combined with the Samsung Galaxy Wearable app . From here you will be able to control the different functions of the Buds and check their charge status. That is precisely what you see at the top. For the charging status of the box to appear, it will have to have at least one headset inside and be open. Just below is one of the most advanced features of the Galaxy Buds +, the ambient mode. This mode allows you to hear what is happening in the world around you with three levels of intensity. It must be recognized that it is a very useful function to know when someone is talking to you (for example in the office), but it also requires an adaptation period. The sound that comes to you from outside is something canned and, at least on a personal level, it has been difficult for me to do it without feeling uncomfortable.
By the way, one of the great absences in the Samsung Galaxy Buds + compared to rivals like Huawei's Freebuds 3 is the noise cancellation mode, just the opposite.
The Buds + include a simple equalizer to enhance aspects such as bass, treble or dynamic mode . From the app you can also control the different touch gestures of the ear pad. Basically, we have one tap to stop and resume the song, two taps to skip the song, and three taps to go to the previous song. Double-tap is also used to answer or end a call, and three-tap to reject it. To be honest, I have to say that I master the one-touch operations without problems, but when it comes to doing both and three touches, things get complicated. It was not easy for me to get hold of those controls, perhaps due to my less agility in the fingers.
These headphones also have an interesting extra with the inclusion of functions by continuously pressing one of the two headphones. For example, we can configure the left earphone so that when pressed it activates the voice assistant (Google or Bixby) and the right one so that it opens the Spotify app . Perhaps more interesting I find the options to raise and lower the volume, or even to activate the ambient sound.
Samsung also has a section in the app called Labs . These are experimental functions that can change over the weeks. Right now, functions are available to take advantage of the side of the touch panel, an option to put the ambient sound extra loud and another to avoid the sound delay in mobile games.
AKG quality seal sound and enhanced calls
The Samsung Galaxy Buds + headphones have been created under the AKG label. The audio quality is crisp and thanks to the use of a two - way speaker with a small tweet for acute and woofer for mid and low cover . It is clear that they will not have the bass that can be achieved with larger speakers, but for this type of headphones it meets the record with note. Of course, I have come to miss the noise cancellation function that we do have in similarly priced models such as Huawei's Freebuds 3.
What Samsung headphones do have is an ambient mode, which serves to sharpen the sound around you so that you can continue listening to music while you find out what is happening . In my case, I have found it very comfortable to know when they were talking to me in the office, although I recognize that the feeling in this way is to listen in a canned way. It is also very useful to make your voice sound clearer and hear it above the noise in a call.
Speaking of calls, this is one of the sections in which Samsung has improved the Buds + the most. The experience of the previous ones was not bad, but once there was some wind it was difficult to make oneself understood. With the new Buds a second external microphone is added that greatly improves the call experience when the weather conditions are not the best.
Elegant but quite striking design
The Samsung Galaxy Buds + face the same dilemma as other similar gadgets: either you like them or you don't. They are not discreet and their domed design makes them stand out quite a bit when they are on . The same can happen with Airpods or Freebuds, which hang from the ear. Personally, this size doesn't bother me, maybe because my ears are big too. Right now, they are available in three different colors: blue, white and black. I got the configuration in that light blue because it is something different from what I am used to.
But let's get to the important thing, how do they fit in the ear? They fit very well . With a little twist you will have them fixed on your ear and it will be very difficult for them to fall no matter how much you head. In addition, if you see that they do not quite fit, you have the option of changing the rubber that surrounds the headset for a larger one or for a smaller one with an oval shape without the protrusion that the other two have. After trying the three options, I stick with the one that comes standard, it is the most comfortable (at least in my case).
Despite their size, they are lightweight and comfortable headphones for long-term use. In addition, they have IPX4 protection so that they are not damaged by splashes or light rain.
Price and reviews
Let's not fool ourselves. The Samsung Galaxy Buds + headphones are a "luxury" gadget when compared to the vast majority of headphones that populate the market. We are talking about an official price of 180 euros, although some offers have already arisen to save some euros on the purchase . Worth? It depends on what you are looking for. If it's not going to hurt your pocket and you want good quality wireless headphones with great autonomy, the Buds are a great option. And more if you already have a Samsung mobile, since the integration is excellent. But for the majority of users who do not want to invest so much there are many powerful and cheap alternatives on the market that do not reach the level of quality of these Buds, but that are far below in price.
The truth is that Samsung has done a great job to improve two key aspects of these headphones: autonomy and audio quality in calls , but the price can become a barrier for this gadget to become a best seller.