Comparison between Beats PowerBeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro
While they’re both made by Apple (they own Beats brand), these two true wireless earbuds serve different purposes. AirPods Pro are a better choice for commuters, while PowerBeats Pro offers everything that a bassheads or athletes want.
AirPods Pro are packed with features like active noise-cancellation, transparency feature, Dolby Atmos support, and ear-canal scanning technology. Beats provide none of those things. At least they both have the H1 chip for fast pairing and connection stability.
Beats main selling point is their ear hook design for sportspeople and an incredible 11-hour battery life per single charge. However, from a comfort standpoint, AirPods Pro takes the victory.
To avoid confusion, let’s dissect the two earbuds by comparing them in different categories down below.
- Have built-in H1 chip for instant pairing and connectivity
- Provide excellent iOS experience
- Both are sweatproof (IPX4)
- Built from similar materials (hard plastic)
- Auto Play/pause feature present on both
- Have cheap-feeling charging cases
Beats PowerBeats Pro
More stable fit with ear hook design
Good passive isolation due to deeper insertion
11h / charge + 24h in case
IPX4 – sweatproof
A more energetic, punchy sound, with deep bass
Cheaper compared to Apple AirPods Pro’s
|Beats PowerBeats Pro||Apple AirPods Pro|
|Weight:||22g both buds||11g both buds|
|Microphone & controls:||Built-in||Built-in|
|Water-protection:||IPX4 (sweatproof)||IPX4 (sweatproof)|
|Bluetooth:||version 5.0 + H1 chip||version 5.0 + H1 chip|
|Battery life:||11h per charge||5h per charge|
|Charging time:||1h full charge – 5min for 1.5h||2h full charge – 5min for 1h|
|Charging cable:||Lightning to USB||Lightning to USB|
|Bluetooth codecs:||SBC, AAC||SBC, AAC|
|Wireless range:||33ft (10m)||33ft (10m)|
|Type:||Built-in mic||Built-in mic|
What’s in the Box?
Beats PowerBeats Pro
Apple AirPods Pro
With packaging you’re getting:
- True wireless earbuds
- Charging cable
- User manual
- Lightning cable for both models
- Beats PowerBeats Pro: 4 pairs of silicone tips vs. Apple AirPods Pro: 3 pairs of silicone tips
Comfort & Fit
While PowerBeats Pro sticks to your ears like glue, they’re not as comfortable as you might think. AirPods Pro do an overall much better job in this category.
Beginning with Beats PowerBeats Pro, their comfort is just fine. However, after 30 minutes or so, the earbuds’ casing starts irritating the outside of the ear canal. The unpleasant sensation gets worse when you start pressing the physical buttons, pushing the housing deeper inside your ear.
Although it’s not as bad as you might think, it’s still something to be cautious about when deciding to get a pair. Thankfully, they excel when it comes to fit, giving you superb stability, no matter in which direction your head is moving.
Apple AirPods Pro’s are much more consistent with their comfort, providing an enjoyable wearing experience for more extended periods.
Yet they’re not perfect. We had noticed that when we got a bit sweaty, earbuds tend to slip out of our ears. There is also this strange thing with tips. Often when you take the earbud out from of the ear, ear tips flip the other way around.
Apple AirPods Pro’s provide an in-ear design with active noise-cancellation, which makes them a clear winner here. PowerBeats Pro can only isolate passively.
Because of deep insertion, in-ear headphones are quite good when it comes to passive noise isolation. Beats PowerBeats Pro are no exception, providing an average performance when it comes to blocking the outside world. You can further improve the seal with aftermarket ear tips.
On the other hand, AirPods Pro have all the latest technologies to combat the noise problem. First, they’re in-ears, and secondly, they offer active noise-cancellation. They can rival Sony WF-1000XM3, doing a fantastic job at blocking constant (city) noises and people’s chatting.
There is also the Transparency mode, in which AirPods use their microphones to amplify the outside noise, making you more aware of what’s going on around you.
Both models have a reliable connection with your transmitting device, especially if the latter has iOS installed.
Since Apple owns Beats, both earbuds have built-in H1 chipset, which in conjunction with AAC Bluetooth codec, provides a seamless iOS experience.
With that, you can expect a stable wireless connection, no (noticeable) video-lag when watching YouTube, and instant connectivity to iOS devices. As soon as you open the lid of the charging case, earbuds already appear connected to your device.
If we nit-pick a little, we noticed that sometimes PowerBeats Pro distort for no apparent reason, although it’s not a big deal. All in all, you get the benefits of the H1 chip in both models.
It seems like size does matter. PowerBeats Pro can go over the 11-hour mark with its battery life per single charge, while AirPods Pro can only last for around 5 hours.
While there are true wireless earbuds that can store more battery life in their charging case, when it comes to a single charge, Beats PowerBeats Pro are still the kings. They offer a class-leading playtime of 11 hours, with an additional 24 hours inside the case.
They’re also more efficient with their quick charging, giving you 1.5 hours of battery life in just 5 minutes. Apple AirPods Pro’s can “only” provide you with 1-hour during a 5-minute charge.
Apple AirPods Pro are still quite solid with their 5-hour battery (4.5 hours advertised), with another 24 hours stored inside the charging case. One cool feature that Beats PowerBeats Pro don’t have is the Qi-compatible wireless charging case.
Battery percentage of both models are shown inside the notification bar on your Bluetooth enabled device.
Both are made of quality hard plastic, have a cheap feeling case, and only come with an IPX4 rating.
Their design might be different, but their construction quality is somewhat the same. Both models’ housing is made of hard, durable plastic that feels good to touch. The only difference is that the AirPods are glossy, whereas Beats have a matte black finish.
None of them are fully water-resistant. Having an IPX4 rating means they can only survive excess sweat. Light sprays of water are also fine while running in the pouring rain can damage them.
Interestingly, their charging cases are also very similar when it comes to build quality. Somehow, both feel too cheap for the price, having a wobbly lid that does not make you confident these will last a long time.
Only a few truly wireless earbuds offer so many features as Apple AirPods Pro, making them a far more versatile pick between the two models.
Apple tried to make the user experience with AirPods Pro as easy as possible. First, you have the H1 chipset that ensures instant connectivity. Then you have active noise-cancellation, which works exceptionally well, with Transparency mode on top of that.
Some small things make the Apple AirPods Pro even more professional compared to the PowerBeats Pro. You have the play/pause function, which activates when you put earbuds out of your ears.
There is also the scanning feature. It measures your ear canal to adjust the EQ optimal for your ears.
Last but not least, AirPods also support Dolby Atmos (if you have the subscription). However, the difference in spatial awareness isn’t as pronounced as you might think.
However, the PowerBeats Pro’s also support the H1 chip for fast connectivity and play/pause feature for automatically stopping the music. And that’s about it. You get physical controls instead of touch-sensitive ones found on AirPods Pro. While that makes them more reliable when pressing, they can get annoying, especially if your ears are already irritated.
Listen to the microphone test of the Apple AirPods Pro:
While these two earbuds are completely opposite in terms of sound quality, with different intentions in mind, we still prefer the Beats PowerBeats Pro presentation. It’s more bass-heavy, but also more exciting and detailed.
Beats has a long history of super bassy products, but in the past few years, their reputation has healed slightly. That is mostly thanks to the products like the PowerBeats Pro. While they’re still bassy, their low-end has tightened up, providing a more controlled, punchy sound.
V-Shaped signature pushes the midrange slightly lower in the mix, while also boosting the treble. The result is an energetic, enjoyable sound that pumps you up with energy. That is why these are most suitable for sportspeople and bassheads.
AirPods Pro took a completely different approach, providing a more balanced sound, with almost neutral characteristics. Bass quantity is similar to the classic AirPods, but with slightly better quality, due to the deeper seal.
Treble is the only frequency region that gets slightly boosted. Apple did that to increase the overall clarity, especially in the vocals. The latter is important since the AirPods Pro do well when it comes to phone calls.
In the end, if you use them with an iPhone you can EQ the sound inside the Apple settings.
Should You Buy Beats PowerBeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro?
Both AirPods Pro and PowerBeats Pro are meant for different users.
Beats PowerBeats Pro can satisfy a broader group of consumers. They’re much more enjoyable to listen to, with better sound quality, and the same H1 chip to make iOS owners happy.
They’re also very sport-oriented earbuds with 11-hour battery life and ear hook design, which grabs to your ears as nothing else could. However, they get a bit uncomfortable after a while, although your mileage may vary.
Apple AirPods Pro offer a much better experience for commuters, with intelligent solutions to combat everyday problems: active noise-cancellation, Transparency mode, and ear scanning for personalized EQ. All of that in a small form factor that is not only stylish but also recognizable.
Price can also be a deciding factor. You need to pay $49 more for AirPods Pro ($249) than PowerBeats Pro ($200).
That’s it for the Beats PowerBeats Pro vs. Apple AirPods Pro comparison. Did we forget to mention something? Let us know what you’d like us to compare in the comments.