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SoundPEATS Air4 Pro Review

Last updated: 5 months ago
12 min read
Editor
rating
3.8
SoundPEATS Air4 Pro in the case

SoundPEATS Air4 Pro are a massive upgrade over the Air4 model, bringing the best sound quality under $100 to date and actually decent ANC performance. Sadly, they suffer from poor battery and isolation.

The Air4 Pro are a redemption for a somewhat awkward Air4 model we tested. By adding ear tips, SoundPEATS turned an otherwise uninteresting product into one of the most desirable ones (at least for audio purists).

With slight EQ corrections inside the app, the SoundPEATS Air4 Pro sound close to what I would consider an ideal sound signature: slightly punchy and sparkly but still faithful to the original recording.

Furthermore, earbuds improve in areas like active noise cancellation, where they reduce a good chunk of low end, whereas ambient sound mode naturally boosts surrounding noise.

Earbuds’ biggest issue is a low battery life of less than 4 hours per charge and poor passive noise isolation.

While there are true wireless earbuds under $100 that offer better-rounded features, let’s see if SoundPEATS Air4 Pro still convince you? Let’s dig in.

Price:

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Pros & Cons:

  • Fantastically natural sound for the price (after EQ)
  • Comfortable & surprisingly stable fit, even for sports
  • Robust Bluetooth connection with multipoint
  • Strong active noise cancelling performance…
  • …but below average passive noise isolation
  • Subpar battery life of only 4 hours (with ANC)

Category ratings:

Editor
rating
3.8
By HeadphonesAddict
User
ratings
4.7
User Ratings: 9
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CONTENTS (show more)

    Sound

    Star Rating
    4.5 Almost Perfect

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro sound natural enough out of the box, but minor tweaks make their sound even better. Their treble could be more refined, but even so, they sound better than most earbuds under $100.

    Hear the difference: The SoundPEATS Air4 Pro – A/B sound test:

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro Sound Quality Test – HeadphonesAddict

    It’s surprising how much you can squeeze from a lower-tier 13mm dynamic driver when you properly tune it and what a pair of ear tips can do (I suspect Air4 and Air4 Pro use the exact same components).

    Out of the box, the SoundPEATS Air4 Pro have slightly too much energy in some areas (you could say they have a V-shaped sound signature), but that’s easily fixable in the app’s custom EQ.

    Generally, you can expect a natural sound with enough punch and sparkle to enjoy most music genres.

    Bass: Strong but smooth

    Lower frequencies, especially sub-bass, carry the most energy in SoundPEATS Air4 Pro. However, that would only annoy audio purists.

    Overall, you get a pretty good-sounding bass that is decently controlled and punchy. The mid-bass kick could be tighter, but it’s good enough, even for listening to rock or metal.

    There’s a good sense of rumble during pop or hip-hop tracks, although don’t expect skull-rattling vibrations.

    Lowering the sub-bass frequencies helps to emphasize the punch a bit more. That helps when listening to metal and rock, where the mixture of bass guitar and double-pedal kicks quickly muddle the sound.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro frequency response

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro - Sound comparison between ANC modes
    For the most part, SoundPEATS Air4 Pro are balanced but with some energy in the bass and high treble.

    Learn how to read audio charts.

    Midrange: A tad bright but natural, nonetheless

    Midrange has some bumps and dips in its frequency response measurement. While instruments sound very accurate, the vocals might appear a bit louder, especially female ones. However, I’m nitpicking.

    In general, the Air4 Pro have a very faithful sound.

    Even electric guitars stay consistent with the neutral response (electric guitars are a common indicator of inaccurate tuning).

    Moreover, both female and male vocals sound lush, full and avoid sibilance. You only hear some harshness on tracks sibilant by default.

    Treble: Good texture and shimmer but lacks extension

    Higher frequencies are quite neutral for the most part. The only major spike is at 13 kHz, adding pleasant energy to the treble.

    Overall, the treble has a good texture, producing cymbal hits with pleasant shimmer and air. Though, these earbuds aren’t for critical listening as they aren’t the most detailed.

    Furthermore, there could be more energy at 16 kHz, extending the treble further and letting the sound breathe more. But again, I’m nitpicking.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro on a branch
    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro’s overall sound quality matches the best headphones under $100.

    The soundstage is decently big and has a better depth than width. You don’t feel like you’re in a concert hall, but you also don’t hear music trapped inside your head.

    On the other hand, the imaging is very accurate. There are some blurry spots between the left/right and center channel, but nothing that would throw you out of your listening experience.

    In conclusion, SoundPEATS Air4 Pro have a truly excellent response. They deserve our high recommendation for budget audiophiles who want to take the first step into faithful listening of their music.

    While not perfect, the Air4 Pro are another example of how a company can deliver a product with a fantastic sound quality without breaking the bank.

    Comfort & Fit

    Star Rating
    4.5 Almost Perfect

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro have a non-intrusive fit with ear tips that don’t go too deep into your ear canal. Fortunately, the tips still provide sufficient stability for most workout routines.

    The Air4 Pro have an almost identical shape and size to the Air4 model. The only addition is the silicone ear tips, of which you get 3 pairs inside the box.

    Ear tips have an oval shape and have a wide profile. However, the silicone is soft, so it doesn’t push against your ear canal like in JBL Reflect Mini NC.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro nozzle
    Ear tips have an oval shape to better contour your ear canal.

    Moreover, ear tips avoid producing annoying ear canal pressure due to a relatively shallow fit. All of that makes them comfortable to use during long listening sessions.

    While a shallower fit usually means poor stability, SoundPEATS Air4 Pro actually glue to your ears quite firmly.

    I started shaking my head vigorously, and the earbuds stayed still.

    Furthermore, while the outer part of the earbuds has a matt finish, the inner part is smooth and glossy. That increases surface friction with your skin, preventing the buds from sliding around too much.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro vs. Air4 nozzle
    Nozzle design between Air4 Pro (left) and Air4 (right).

    They probably can’t withstand the most intense sports activities, like going downhill with a bike, but they should endure outdoor running.

    The only thing the shallow fit affects is slightly worse passive noise isolation. You also get more wind noise than expected due to the stem design. But more on that later.

    Durability

    Star Rating
    3.5 Almost Great

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro have complete sweatproof resistance thanks to an IPX4 rating, but can’t survive under the shower. The charging case is nothing special, yet it does its job protecting the buds.

    Like most SoundPEATS earbuds, the Air4 Pro are also rated for an IPX4 water-resistant rating. That means protection from excess sweat (like during physical activities) and light rain/water splashes.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro vs. Air4 buds
    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro and non-Pro version share identical design (and also identical IPX4 rating).

    That makes them a safe pick for sports activities and outdoor use, even if you get caught in the rain. On the flip side, avoid washing them under water or using them in the shower.

    Earbuds themselves are made of 4 parts glued together and feel quite firm. You might be able to crack them open with your hands, but only if you try hard. It won’t happen accidentally.

    Moving to the charging case, it’s similar to the one from SoundPEATS Capsule3 Pro but with a slightly more robust hinge. There’s also a little metallic plate on the side, which is entirely cosmetic and doesn’t add to robustness.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro case slogan
    Small metallic plate with “Hear Your Imagination” engraving.

    The case is entirely plastic and lightweight, which makes it feel cheap. It also lacks an IP rating, so avoid putting it next to sweaty clothes.

    On the other hand, it does its job protecting the earbuds. The lid shuts firmly and shouldn’t open, even if you throw the case in the bag. If the plastic cracks upon impact, you are unlucky. The most you can expect are scratches.

    Battery

    Star Rating
    2.0 Adequate

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro have one of the lowest battery runtimes we’ve tested at 4 hours and 5 minutes. There’s also no mention of fast charging and Qi charging.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro Battery Comparison

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro battery comparison

    SoundPEATS is telling the truth in their marketing material. The Air4 Pro truly have extremely low battery life, landing near the bottom in the ANC earbuds category.

    In our battery life test, where we activate ANC and leave earbuds playing music at 50% volume, we got:

    • 4 hours and 5 minutes on a single charge.

    That result is almost identical to the Air4 and Capsule3 Pro models, with the latter being the only one among ANC earbuds to perform even worse.

    Thankfully, the charging case is more generous, with an additional 22 hours of playtime. It takes 1.5 hours to charge it from 0-100%. Sadly, you get no fast or Qi wireless charging capabilities.

    Features

    Star Rating
    4.5 Almost Perfect

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro have many helpful features, with custom EQ and ANC modes being the highlights. Even the microphone is good enough for making calls, albeit it sometimes becomes muffled.

    SoundPEATS is always generous with the number of features they offer to their earbuds. The only difference is how well they work. Fortunately, all of them work well in the Air4 Pro. Here are all the features:

    On top of that, you can also turn off the touch control functionality in case you find them too sensitive or experience ghost touches (when your warm breath is registered as a single tap).

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro app settings
    All the customizable features inside the SoundPEATS app.

    Adaptive EQ

    This feature aims to personalize the sound to your hearing. It plays various beeps at different frequencies and loudness, and you determine whether you hear them or not.

    How this feature performs is always a gamble. Sometimes, it makes the sound too bright or bassy or simply doesn’t work (SoundPEATS Clear). Only on one occasion, it did a good job (SoundPEATS Capsule3 Pro).

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro Adaptive EQ

    That said, the final result for SoundPEATS Air4 Pro comes out a bit bassy and warm, with all frequencies lowered by around 2dB. Try it yourself, but I recommend using custom EQ instead.

    Custom EQ & presets

    Custom EQ offers 9 frequency bands with somewhat uncommon frequencies. While I would prefer to have a 16 kHz band, you still have good control over the sound.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro EQ

    While the difference between default and our custom EQ is subtle, it opens up the sound and squeezes even more from the 13mm dynamic driver.

    Here are our custom equalizer settings:

    Frequency
    band
    Adjustment
    in decibels
    20 Hz-4dB
    100 Hz0dB
    150 Hz+1dB
    320 Hz+1dB
    500 Hz0dB
    800 Hz0dB
    2.5 kHz+2dB
    5.5 kHz0dB
    12 kHz+1dB

    Furthermore, you get up to ten presets you get a standard SoundPEATS selection. None offers a better sound signature than the default “SOUNDPEATS Classic”, so you’re better off sticking with the latter.

    Microphone quality

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro have a good, albeit quiet, microphone performance, especially when speaking in a quieter place.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro microphone test: (no noise test from 0:00-0:28, with background noise test from O:29-0:57)

    Microphone delivers a good call quality when you’re in a distraction-free environment. You sound decently full but a bit quiet, so the person on the other side needs to raise the volume (check the mic test above).

    Similar performance continues when making phone calls near busy traffic. Occasionally, your voice gets slightly muffled, but never to the point of being hard to understand.

    Mics’ noise reduction technology only partially reduces background distractions. Meaning that when you’re talking near a busy road, others can still hear the faint shimmery noise of the car’s tires.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro inner side
    The main microphone for phone calls is located on the tip of the stem.

    Overall, SoundPEATS Air4 Pro are good enough to make quick phone calls in various situations. However, pick one of the best earbuds with a mic if you plan to call a lot.

    Disclaimer: Unfortunately, my smartphone doesn’t support aptX Adaptive, so I can’t comment on whether aptX Voice improves the call quality.

    Noise Isolation

    Star Rating
    2.0 Adequate

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro have a poor passive noise isolation performance. They let you hear most of the outside noises, just slightly muffled.

    Measured average noise isolation10,53 dBA

    Most wireless earbuds with ear tips easily beat the passive noise isolation of the SoundPEATS Air4 Pro. Their shallow fit creates an insufficient seal, which lets through all low and midrange frequencies.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro passive isolation
    Passive noise isolation finally starts becoming effective above 1.5 kHz.

    Here’s a table of how effective is SoundPEATS Air4 Pro’s passive noise isolation at blocking specific frequencies:

    FrequencyNoise reduction
    dB SPL
    Noise reduction
    dBA (A-weighted)
    100 Hz0 dB-19,1 dBA
    200 Hz0 dB-10,8 dBA
    400 Hz0 dB-4,8 dBA
    600 Hz0 dB-2,2 dBA
    1 kHz0,4 dB0,4 dBA
    2 kHz5,1 dB6,3 dBA
    4 kHz34,6 dB35,6 dBA
    6 kHz15,5 dB15,6 dBA
    10 kHz27,1 dB24,6 dBA
    15 kHz28,8 dB22,8 dBA
    Average10,53 dBA
    A-weighted values from the International standard IEC 61672:2003

    Even high-frequency performance is mediocre, with earbuds reducing 4 kHz the most, up to -35dB. Other frequencies are reduced much more modestly.

    The only earbuds we’ve tested that have worse passive noise isolation are Google Pixel Buds A-Series.

    If you want peace and quiet on your daily commute, you must activate active noise cancelling.

    What about wind noise and sound leakage?

    Starting with wind noise, there is some. Due to a stem “AirPods-like” shape, earbuds produce air drag, which you hear as wind noise. However, that only gets distracting when taking them for a run.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro vs. Air4 earbuds
    Stems are extra surfaces for wind to hit into, which contributes to more wind noise.

    On the other hand, there’s very little sound leakage. You need to blast music quite high to let others know what you’re playing. At those volumes, you’re already risking hearing loss.

    Noise Cancelling

    Star Rating
    3.5 Almost Great

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro provide a good lower-bass frequency cancellation but could be better at higher bass and mid-frequencies. In contrast, you get a very natural boost of the ambient sounds.

    Measured average noise cancellation9,73 dBA

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro active noise cancelling test:

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro ANC Test – HeadphonesAddict

    Active noise cancellation performance almost matches the best competitors around the $100 price point. At least in the bass and midrange portion of the spectrum, the Air4 Pro work almost identically to the Sony WF-1000XM4.

    However, compared to newer, equally priced competitors, they slightly lag behind in upper bass and midrange areas. The biggest issue remain higher frequencies, which is why you still hear speech quite clearly.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro ANC vs. EarFun Air Pro 3
    Air4 Pro are the strongest at sub-bass frequencies, but not so much in the mids (compared to EarFun Air Pro 3 (green)).

    Here’s the table with SoundPEATS Air4 Pro ANC test results:

    FrequencyNoise cancellation
    dB SPL
    Noise cancellation
    dBA (A-weighted)
    30 Hz21.2 dB-19,4 dBA
    50 Hz30.7 dB0,4 dBA
    70 Hz30.9 dB6,4 dBA
    90 Hz35.9 dB15,3 dBA
    200 Hz33 dB22,2 dBA
    400 Hz22.8 dB18 dBA
    600 Hz14.4 dB12,2 dBA
    800 Hz10.7 dB9,9 dBA
    1 kHz8.2 dB8,2 dBA
    2 kHz3.5 dB4,7 dBA
    Average9,73 dBA
    A-weighted values from the International standard IEC 61672:2003

    One thing worth mentioning is a little glitch (also audible in our ANC test video) where if you go straight from ambient sound mode to ANC, the latter doesn’t activate. You must first go into “normal” mode and then activate ANC.

    What about ambient sound mode?

    Transparent mode, as SoundPEATS calls it, works really well. Earbuds manage to boost the surrounding noise from 20 Hz to 2.7 kHz. That means that at least other people’s voices sound full and natural.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro ambient sound mode
    The ambient sound mode sounds a bit thin due to the boost between 800 Hz and 2.5 kHz, but that’s hardly an issue.

    If I must nitpick, voices can appear slightly thin due to earbuds over-boosting the 800 Hz and 2.5 kHz region. However, that’s still better than most other earbuds, even more expensive ones like Edifier NeoBuds Pro 2.

    The only thing that can be distracting is some artificial noise due to earbuds over-boosting the audio signal.

    Bluetooth

    Star Rating
    4.5 Almost Perfect

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro provide a decent 40 feet of indoor range, stable connection, multipoint support, and gaming mode. You can even use aptX Lossless if your audio device supports it.

    Air4 Pro use Bluetooth 5.3 to ensure a robust close-range connection. Even in a room full of other wireless devices, you shouldn’t experience random interference.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro buds in case
    The Air4 Pro have a similarly robust Bluetooth connection to other SoundPEATS earbuds, with 40 feet of indoor range.

    In contrast, the indoor Bluetooth range is only slightly above the average. In our range test, where we carried the earbuds across the house, they lasted:

    • Around 40 feet (or 12.2 meters) until the audio became unlistenable.

    That puts them in the same place as the Capsule3 Pro and Air4 models, which could mean they all use similar hardware for Bluetooth.

    How to pair SoundPEATS Air4 Pro?

    1. Earbuds go into pairing mode automatically when you take them out of the case for the first time.
    2. To pair them to a different device, place the buds into the case and hold the button on the bottom of the case (near the charging port). Earbuds go into pairing mode when a small LED starts slowly blinking.
    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro charging & button
    Pairing button next to a charging port.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro also support Bluetooth multipoint. The feature works out of the box, enabling you to connect the earbuds to two devices simultaneously.

    By doing that, earbuds automatically switch audio sources depending on what device you’re using.

    1. To use multipoint, you must first pair them to two different devices separately.
    2. Then, you first connect them to one device. Once connected, enable Bluetooth on the second device and click on the earbuds’ name in the Bluetooth settings.

    What Bluetooth codecs do they use?

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro use a plethora of Bluetooth codecs:

    • SBC
    • AAC
    • aptX
    • aptX Adaptive
    • aptX Lossless
    • aptX Voice (for voice calls)

    In most cases, your audio device will only use AAC or aptX, depending on the operating system you’re using (iOS, Android, or Windows).

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro earbuds in case
    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro have a bunch of high-quality Bluetooth codecs that only a few smartphones can use.

    So far, only newer smartphones support aptX Adaptive, let alone aptX Lossless (marketers also call it “Snapdragon sound”). Using higher-quality audio codecs and formats is also a hot topic in the audio community.

    In my opinion, you’re perfectly fine if you use the Air4 Pro with “just” AAC or aptX Bluetooth codec.

    Is there an audio lag?

    There’s no visible audio lag when watching videos on smartphones and social media apps, including YouTube and video streaming services.

    On the flip side, mobile games have a tiny delay, even in Game mode. Its 88 ms latency is still visible to human eyes. That said, this only matters to diehard competitive gamers.

    Should You Get SoundPEATS Air4 Pro?

    Star Rating
    4.5 Almost Perfect

    For $90 (you can often get them for much less on Amazon), SoundPEATS Air4 Pro are a very versatile pick. But due to their few downsides, they aren’t for everyone.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro earbuds
    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro are amazing in some areas and poor in others.

    We can recommend them to:

    • Budget audiophiles that can appreciate their faithful audio reproduction.
    • Commuters due to their decent active noise cancellation, which is good enough to cancel out engine noises.
    • Gymgoers due to their comfort, stability, and an IPX4 rating.

    In contrast, users that should avoid these are:

    • Outdoor users who like taking their music for a run or on a bike.
    • Frequent travelers might want a more effective passive noise isolation and longer battery life.

    How do SoundPEATS Air4 Pro compare to the competition?

    • Air4 Pro sound more natural than competitors, even more expensive ones.
    • They have overall similarly effective ANC than the competition.
    • Earbuds feel a tad comfier and more stable than most true wireless earbuds.
    • Air4 Pro have robust Bluetooth, multipoint, and Game mode, which is more than most competitors.
    • They have an IPX4 rating, which is pretty standard among competitors.
    • Their battery life of 4 hours and 5 minutes is way below average.
    • Passive noise isolation is among the weakest in all wireless earbuds we’ve tested.

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro alternatives

    EarFun Air Pro 3

    EarFun Air Pro 3 earbuds on stone

    EarFun have a warmer but less accurate sound. Still, they’re pretty enjoyable, nonetheless. In contrast, they’re superior at reducing midrange frequencies with ANC and blocking higher ones with passive isolation.

    Furthermore, they have a much longer battery life of over 8 hours on a single charge and an IPX5 rating. But they aren’t as stable for sports.

    EarFun Air Pro 3 review

    TRUTHEAR x Crinacle Zero:Red

    TRUTHEAR x Crinacle Zero Red IEMs

    These wired in-ear monitors cost only $55 but deliver similar, if not slightly smoother and better controlled audio performance.

    Moreover, “ear hook” cable makes them a tad more stable, but they lack an IP rating, so they aren’t suited for sports. Also, wires mean you don’t need to charge them, but only a few modern devices have an AUX port.

    TRUTHEAR x Crinacle Zero:Red review

    What’s in the Box?

    SoundPEATS Air4 Pro accessories
    • SoundPEATS Air4 Pro true wireless earbuds
    • Charging case
    • 3 pairs of silicone ear tips (S, M, L)
    • USB-C to USB-A charging cable
    • User manual

    Specifications

    Type: True wireless
    Connection: Bluetooth 5.3
    Back design: Closed-back
    Drivers: 13mm dynamic
    Frequency range: n/a
    Impedance: n/a
    Weight: 0.16 ounces (4.5 grams) per earbud
    Mic & Controls: Yes
    Water resistance: IPX4
    Battery life: 4h + 22h in case
    Charging time: 1.5h – USB-C
    Active noise cancelling: Yes, hybrid
    Bluetooth codecs: SBC, AAC, aptX, aptX Adaptive, aptX Lossless
    Wireless range: 40 feet (or 12.2 meters)
    Microphone: 6 mics with AI noise reduction (aptX Voice)

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