We unexpectedly really like open-ear earbuds

Anker Soundcore Aerofit and Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro

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Forget everything you thought you knew about earbuds. I mean, not everything, we still love our normal in-ear earbuds, but we recently acquired the Anker Soundcore AeroFit open-ear earbuds, and they’re a welcome addition to our audio consumption.

We have long been focused on finding the best truly wireless earbuds, comparing Active Noise Canceling (ANC) capabilities and more. We’ve been using the Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro for a while, which we use almost every day. However, we limit our time with them, due to both their limited battery life, and ear-health considerations.

If you make the same mistake we did, evaluating open-ear earbuds by the same standards as in-ear buds, you’ll never like what you see. Instead, I urge you to evaluate open-ear buds against your desktop speakers.

The Freedom of Open-Ear vs. Classic In-Ear

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro

Traditional in-ear buds, like the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro, block out your surroundings with silicone tips. This creates an immersive listening experience, but can be isolating and potentially dangerous if you’re running outdoors or cycling in traffic.

Anker Soundcore Aerofit Pro

Open-ear earbuds, like the Soundcore AeroFit line, ditch the ear tips altogether. They wrap around your ear, with the speaker floating over your ear canal. Sound is directed to your ear-drums, but never blocks your hearing. This keeps you aware of your surroundings while still letting you enjoy your music.

AeroFit Pro vs AeroFit

Anker offers multiple open-ear options, including the AeroFit and the AeroFit Pro. The Pro offers a few helpful upgrades:

  • Bigger Drivers, Bigger Bass: The Pro features 16.2mm drivers compared to the AeroFit’s 14mm drivers, for richer sound, especially in the bass department.
  • LDAC & Spatial Audio: Audiophiles rejoice! The Pro supports LDAC for high-fidelity audio and spatial audio for a more immersive listening experience.
  • Neckband Security: The Pro comes with a detachable neckband for added security during intense workouts.

The AeroFit is a solid choice for those looking for a more basic open-ear experience at a slightly lower price point. We admit that the overall sound quality leaves a bit to be desired, particularly with heavy-bass music at higher volumes. Expect distortion and please install the Soundcore app to adjust the EQ. We have not tested the pro model yet, but are looking forward to doing so.

The Great ANC Debate

Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) is a big deal with in-ear buds like the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro. It uses microphones to block out external noise. While great for creating a quiet listening environment when you’re in a noisy outside environment, ANC can eat through battery life and might not be ideal for situations where you need to be aware of your surroundings. Open-ear earbuds forego ANC altogether, relying on their open design to keep you situationally aware.

Ear Health Matters

Ear health is a growing concern with excessive headphone use. In-ear buds can cause irritation and discomfort, especially during long listening sessions. Open-ear buds eliminate this risk altogether, leaving your ears free and happy.

Anker Soundcore Aerofit

Who Rocks Open-Ear?

Open-ear earbuds are perfect for:

  • Safety-conscious runners and cyclists: Hear your surroundings and stay safe on the road.
  • Gym rats: Pump up your workout without missing your trainer’s cues or feeling isolated.
  • Anyone who wants a comfortable listening experience: Open-ear buds are great for long listening sessions without ear fatigue.

The Verdict

Open-ear earbuds are a whole new way to listen to the world. The Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro promise to take the concept to the next level with its upgraded sound quality, a secure fit, and comfortable design. It’s pricier than the standard AeroFit, but the feature bump might be worth it for audiophiles and serious athletes.

If you’re looking for complete noise isolation and immersion, traditional in-ears like the Galaxy Buds 2 Pro might be a better fit. But if you value safety, comfort, and a unique listening experience, open your ears to the possibilities of open-ear earbuds with the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro.