Choosing between Apple and Beats headphones can be as tricky as picking a favorite child. If you’re considering purchasing a pair of Beats Powerbeats Pro or AirPods Pro for yourself or a loved one, keep in mind that Apple-owned Beats’ Powerbeats Pro has many of the same features as the AirPods Pro but with a few design differences, and essentially the same price point.
We compared the Beats vs AirPods Pro to help you decide which wireless headphones are best for you.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs Apple AirPods Pro: Pros and Cons
|Beats Powerbeats Pro||Apple AirPods Pro|
A comprehensive suite of controls.
Physical volume button available.
Four ear tips sizes and an adjustable ear hook included.
Better for the gym.
Highly impressive battery life.
Good mic quality.
Sweat & water resistant.
Voice assistant on compatible devices.
Available in four colors.
Designed to be voice-controlled via Siri
Force sensors on both stems
Three pairs of ear tips included
Outstanding sound quality
Sweat and water resistant
Automatic switching between connected Apple devices
6 months of Apple Music free
No Qi-based wireless charging support.
Slightly more expensive.
No physical volume button.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro: Controls
The Powerbeats Pro offers a comprehensive suite of controls, including physical buttons. There is a volume rocker switch, and the Beats logo is a button. You can answer calls and play/pause music with a single tap. A double tap moves the track forward; a triple tap moves it back. By holding down the last of these taps, you can even fast forward and rewind. The controls are duplicated on each bud, so you don’t have to remember which earbud does what.
Apple’s AirPods Pro are primarily intended to be controlled by voice using Siri (Apple’s voice assistant). Apple has put force sensors on both stems if you don’t want to talk to yourself. Squeeze it to toggle noise-canceling modes, skip tracks, pause music, and answer calls. When jogging or cycling, we found it a little fiddly. There’s also no physical volume button, so you’ll have to ask Siri or take your phone out of your bag or pocket to fix the volume.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro: Features
Winner: Apple AirPods Pro
Apple AirPods Pro are a clear winner in this category, thanks to the new active noise canceling (ANC) technology, which performs exceptionally well. In addition, the AirPods Pro includes a transparency mode that allows you to hear what’s happening around you. It’s ideal for exercising in stereo mode or hearing subway platform announcements on your way to work.
While active noise cancellation helps block out the world around you, the AirPods Pro’s Spatial Audio aims to immerse you in your content further. In addition to Dolby Atmos, the feature is compatible with a range mixed in 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound.
Apple uses gyroscope and accelerometers to map out the earbud’s position relative to your iOS device; it even supports head tracking. Spatial Audio currently works with only a few apps, including Apple Music, Apple TV, Disney+, Plex, and HBO Max. Overall, the new and improved features of the AirPods Pro outperform the Powerbeats Pro.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro: Fit
At first, the choice may seem like a no-brainer, but it is not as simple. The original AirPods were notorious for having a terrible fit, but that has been corrected with the AirPods Pro, making this a much cleaner fight.
AirPods Pro now comes with three pairs of ear tips that easily snap onto the end of the earbuds because of Apple’s proprietary system, providing a much more versatile fit in the ear that suits most people. As a result, they no longer suffer from the terrible fit and isolation issues that plagued the originals.
They’re particularly beloved by gym goers and runners since the buds are also sweat and water-resistant to boot.
The Beats Pods Pro does not have ANC, but it does have an ergonomic shape that nestles comfortably within the concha bowl of the ear and blocks out some noise. Each pair of earbuds includes four different sizes of ear tips as well as an adjustable ear hook for additional customization. This gives the buds a slight advantage in terms of fit.
You can rest assured that if the nozzle falls out of your ear, the ear hook will keep it in place. Anyone who has ever dropped one of the wireless earbuds on the street understands the value of an around-ear hook.
Both of these headphones are sweat and water resistant, but the Beats Pros are the more athletic of the two. They are primarily intended for use during exercise and include ear hooks to ensure a secure fit even during the most strenuous workouts. The Powerbeats Wireless Pro may be a better gym companion if you enjoy working out.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro: Usability
The Beats Powerbeats Pro are the more comfortable workout earbuds for strenuous exercise, but the AirPods Pro can also compete. The Beats AirPods Pro includes full playback controls, including volume, so you never have to reach for your phone while performing. It also has the aforementioned hook design, which prevents them from flying out even during the most strenuous workouts.
That ear hook may not seem to be of much assistance when working out, but by maximizing the overall size of each earbud, they distribute their weight more evenly over your entire ear. Furthermore, it is much easier to find a bud in the less likely event that it falls out.
Nonetheless, the AirPods Pro is no slouch in this category. The earbuds have the same IPX4 rating as the headphones and do an excellent job of staying in your ears. Because the AirPods Pro lacks volume control (unless you use Siri), you will have to endure the inconvenience every time you want to lower the volume, unless you don’t mind being the odd person speaking to Siri in the gym.
If you wish to exercise outdoors while keeping an ear on what’s happening around you, both earphones support full mono playback.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro: Connectivity
One of the most serious concerns with true wireless earbuds is how well they communicate with one another and your source device. Constant skipping and stuttering can be extremely annoying, but thankfully, both the Beats Air Pods Pro and the AirPods Pro include the Apple H1 chip, which helps to eliminate this issue. The H1 is a dedicated chip that provides a more stable, low-lag connection with Bluetooth 5.0 for Apple devices, and it does the job well.
Skips were minimal in our testing with both of these pairs of buds, and pairing is also a breeze thanks to the H1 chip. You must tap the “Connect” button on your iOS device to automatically pair it with all of your iCloud devices. You must go through Bluetooth settings if you’re an Android user, and you’ll probably experience a few more stutters than iOS users, but they’ll be few and far between.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro: Sound Quality
Winner: Apple AirPods Pro
AirPods sounded great from the get-go, with plenty of bass to rival the Powerbeats Pro and a good midrange and treble. We tested it with rock, pop, R&B, hip-hop, jazz, podcasts, and audiobooks, and we’ve never had an issue with audio clarity. However, because they don’t form a tight seal like a gummy-tipped earbud, AirPods lack noise cancellation and let in a fair amount of ambient noise.
While Beats has consistently been a brand that performs remarkably well in the marketing and aesthetic department, its weak spot has been a lack of advancement in audio tech. The Powerbeats Pro is a break away from those criticisms, with a linear piston driver that delivers better acoustic response and slight distortion in the bass.
It’s pretty balanced across lows and mids, with a crisp, finished sound. They deliver a good amount of detail at normal volume but as soon as you crank the volume up, the irregularities begin to show. Even the bass, which is Beats’ calling card, lacks impact. And while the tonal profile suits lower-quality streaming services, we can’t ignore the general lack of dynamic range.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro: Noise Canceling
Winner: Apple AirPods Pro
Does Powerbeats Pro have noise cancellation? Yes! However, the Apple AirPods Pro have active noise cancellation, which outperforms the Beats Powerbeats Pro in combating low and midrange frequency noises. If you’re commuting, the AirPods Pro should be in your bag. Are Powerbeats pro noise cancelling? For a pair of non-ANC earbuds, the Powerbeats Pro does an excellent job of blocking out high-frequency sounds such as conversations and other background noises. The Powerbeats Pro will make droning lows more audible.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro: Mic Quality
Winner: Beats Powerbeats Pro
Many people use their headphones to make phone calls, and thankfully, both the Powerbeats Pro and the AirPods Pro are adequate in this regard. You won’t sound bad either, but the AirPods Pro has a slight advantage when it comes to lower frequencies in your voice.
They both use dual beam-forming microphones with features like wind noise rejection, and the difference, while minor, is noticeable.
Overall, the Powerbeats Pro performs better at noise rejection (though not as well against the wind) and captures voices more naturally than the AirPods Pro. While neither option is bad in this case, if you use a VoLTE chat service or need to record your voice, we recommend the Powerbeats Pro.
Beats Powerbeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro: Battery Life
Winner: Beats Powerbeats Pro
The AirPods Pro have a battery life of 4.5 hours, plus an additional 19 hours from the included wireless charging case. However, if you turn off the noise-canceling technology, you can extend playback to five hours. They’re no match for the Powerbeats Pro, which claim a marathon nine-hour playback time. When used along with the charging case, that figure rises to an AirPods-equivalent 24 hours of playback.
The Powerbeats Pro lasts slightly more than 10 hours on a single charge, while the AirPods Pro lasts slightly more than 5 hours. Five minutes in the AirPods Pro case yields 60 minutes of playtime, which is slightly less than the Powerbeats Pro case’s ability to provide 90 minutes of playtime after five minutes of charging.
Both buds charge quickly, but the Powerbeats Pro do not support Qi-based wireless charging and must be charged using a Lightning cable. It’s a bummer, but not enough to cost Beats the round. AirPods Pro case, however, supports wireless charging and a MagSafe connection.
Apple’s latest market entrant, the AirPods Pro, is truly impressive. They’re more expensive than standard AirPods at $249, but you get better sound quality, improved comfort, and Apple’s own noise-canceling technology.
Beats vs AirPod Pros! Are you looking for the most athletic wireless earbuds? The popular Beats Powerbeats Pro $199 may suit you better. Like the AirPods Pro, they are extremely easy to use and come with a slew of premium features, including voice control.
So, which is better: Beats vs AirPods Pro? We admire the Powerbeats Pro for its long battery life, portability, and lag-free wireless audio delivery, thanks to Apple’s H1 Bluetooth chip technology.
However, while the Beats are some of the best sports buddies, their musical performance falls short. The AirPods Pro are well worth the money, especially if you own an iPhone.
All-in-all, it entirely depends on your needs and preferences. If you don’t spend much time outside and want earbuds to enjoy outstanding sound quality truly, the AirPods Pro is a good choice. However, Powerbeats Pro offers more audio hours, and they are a must-have for frequent travelers or fitness enthusiasts who enjoy pounding the pavement.
We hope this review helps you make the best selection according to your personal needs and preferences. Please share if you have any questions regarding Beats Powerbeats Pro and Apple AirPods Pro; we love helping our Reviewed family.