Buy on bestbuy.com
Large, Medium, Small
Galaxy Buds+ True Wireless Earbud Headphones
3 pairs of ear tips, 3 pairs of wing tips, charging case, USB-C cable
Call, Track selection, Volume
85 milliampere hours
– April 18, 2021
Short version: These are worth getting, but they need some EQ to get them to sound their best. They are comfortable, lightweight, and the case has a small footprint. The features are great for this price point.
I’m an android, Galaxy Note 9 User. With some tweaking these can sound amazing. As far as features go, these ticked all the boxes for me. Those boxes are wireless charging, independent earbud use, touch controls, pass through hearing, and fins/wings to hold them in ear. You’d be surprised at how many true wireless earbuds that list eliminates, even ones that are supposed to have better sound.
Aura Blue looks amazing in person. The case is sort of metallic in color and it is hard to photograph. The pictures on the website and even on the box don’t do it justice. They are very deep blue in person. As soon as I saw these I wanted them. The buds themselves have a mix of gloss for the touchpad, and matte for the buds. They’re not as slippery as the black version which I really like. The fins and eartips could use some extra sizes such as extra large and extra small. There are a wide variety of ear cartilage shapes and the more options the better.
Speaking of sound, these sound very flat and neutral with stock settings. These have a dual driver setup with one dedicated toward the low end/bass. However, your first impression will be, “where’s the bass?” Instead of being tuned bass heavy, they are tuned relatively flat. Still, due to the dedicated bass driver, they can handle heavier bass settings in post EQ processing.
I’m glad these are not tuned bass heavy but this leads to my first gripe. The EQ in the wearables app is straight up garbage. It is lacking in any real control. The presets do not highlight the capabilities of the drivers. The “Dynamic” setting sounded the best on the original Galaxy Buds, but in the Buds+ it created a very annoying harsh sound in the upper frequencies. It made “S” sounds in vocals too sibilant (think of a snake hiss sound), same thing with high hats. I found leaving it on normal or soft sounds best, then I EQ in two, that’s right, two other locations.
If you are on android and you have your music on your device as opposed to streaming it, you NEED to get the app Poweramp. It has a very robust EQ that supersedes the phone’s global EQ. On Samsung phones, the default system wide EQ will lower your volume if you boost a frequency higher than one “tick”, PowerAmp mitigates this. I add bass and boost upper mids with powerAmp. This thickens the low end and makes vocals and guitars extra clear.
The second app I use for EQ is powerEQ. This allows me to access another level of bass that triggers a sub bass subwoofer type of low end that is very pleasant. I add a few points of bass there, a little bit of surround, and here’s the most important part: I add gain to the signal. This gain give you back the volume you use from boosting the bass signal in either powerEQ or the android global EQ (if you’re not using power amp)
With this combination of EQ tricks the galaxy buds + feel like a clean platform for you to shape to your liking. This could ALL be avoided if Samsung gave us a 10 band graphic EQ or even better a parametric EQ. One can only hope.
If you don’t want to bother with those apps, make sure you at least turn on Dolby Atmos if you are on galaxy phones, use the advanced sound tuning (the one that gives you the hearing test) and it will boost a bunch of frequencies for you. Bottom line, post processing is your friend.
My 2nd gripe was the battery life of the case. I went through 3 pairs of galaxy buds (two of them through amazon) because the case would drain very quickly. What was happening is the buds would reach 100% charge. Then for no good reason one would drop to 99% and the case would do its thing to charge it to 100% again. This loop would happen several times until the bud settled. For example. Using the buds for an hour would leave them at around 90% battery. The case would be at 100% and drain to about 89 to get the buds back to 100%. I would check the battery and every 20 minutes I would lose a few percent until the case battery would settle at around 67-70%. All to bring back about an hour’s worth of charge. Ridiculous! It has to be a bug where the case thinks one of the buds is not fully charged. Anyway, I returned two pairs to amazon and decided to go for these because of the color and I figured Best Buy would have a different batch that might not be affected by what i’m calling a bug/defect. So far I’m right. The Aura Blue color have not drained and it looks like i’l be getting closer to the 11 hours than the 5 I was getting before. If it starts happening to these I’ll update the review. Due to this flaw I made sure I got the extended warranty. If this is how it starts, I can’t imagine where battery life will be in a year or so.
Battery life of the earbuds themselves is stellar. I left the volume at 50 and let music play until they both died. They lasted for 12 hours. Ambient mode was off, and I wasn’t using the touch pads. I literally left the buds on my desk playing music. I’d pick them up every so often to make sure sound was still coming out of them. In real world usage it will be less than 12 hours because of volume, ambient mode , and touch pad use.
Ergonomics are good. I Like the touch pads and I like that you can lock them. I lock them when I work out so that when I wipe my sweat I don’t accidentally trigger a pause/volume/ whatever. I wish you could use gestures instead of taps. It would be cool to swipe up and down for volume, and left and right to change songs or activate voice assistant etc.
Call quality is almost excellent. It is not as good as speaking directly into your phone. It is a slightly softer presentation than that. However it is worlds better than the old Galaxy Buds and even some over ear headphones I’ve used. These do not sound muffled and they do a pretty good job of isolating your voice from background noise. No one I’ve been on a call with has asked if i’m using headphones or asked me to repeat things.
Lack of noise cancelling is not an issue for me. I think these do a great job of isolating external sounds and once the music starts I can’t really hear anything. I had these and the Sony wf sp800n at the same time. The noise cancelling on those was only ok. It dulled low frequency noise but introduced a bit of hiss and you could still hear high frequency constant noises. For example the hum of the air conditioners compressor was muted, but the chirp of its fan was not. These isolate enough noise that it feels like wearing earplugs. So if you’re going to be crossing the street you should probably use ambient mode. Personally noise cancelling is not a must for me, if it is for you then its omission will be a deal breaker for you.
Final Thoughts: My perfect Galaxy Buds would have swipe gestures for the touch pads, a 10 band parametric eq, and a bigger battery for the case. Other than that I think these are a solid buy. I’ve attached screen shots of my power amp, powerEQ and wearables settings.
– May 13, 2021
The idea of spending over $100 on earbuds doesn’t sit easy with some people, and even I was hesitant before purchasing the Galaxy Buds+. When my 15-year-old Sony wired earbuds broke, I did quite a bit of research to see if jumping on the wireless earbuds trend would be worth it, and to figure out which wireless buds to get if so. I’m glad I was able to get the Galaxy Buds+ when they were on sale at the deepest discount they had ever been to date. They sound great, they’re easy to use, they fit nicely, they’re fairly customizable, and the battery life is excellent.
The idea of customizing the sound is maybe a little overhyped in some reviews/articles about the Samsung Galaxy Buds+. You can certainly change the sound settings in the Galaxy Wearable app – and you definitely should change from the default setting, but you’re choosing presets rather than doing your own tuning. I’m fine with having presets, but if you’re an all-out audiophile and expecting to be presented with a bunch of switches and sliders for full-blown customizability, you won’t find that. Normal is the default setting, and it’s okay, but I’ve found Dynamic to be the best. Clear is alright, better than Normal, but still not as good as Dynamic. The Bass Boost setting technically does boost the bass just slightly, but it also makes things kind of muddy – heck, muffled really, it’s actually on the quiet side. Don’t bother with Bass Boost. Set the buds to Dynamic – that’s the way to go!
The sound is great when listening to music (of all sorts of genres) and when on conference calls. There are a lot of wireless earbuds out there at a variety of price points, and of course they all sound different. Everything I read said that the Galaxy Buds+ are the best for calls, and these are really quite good on calls. People’s voices are clear, the sound is detailed and accurate, there’s no hissing or static. As for the quality of the mics, others had no trouble at all understanding me. I sounded loud and clear.
There’s also an ambient sound feature that’s kind of interesting to experiment with. Even with the different levels of ambient sound enabled, things are clear. Outside noises can be sort of digital sounding in moments which are otherwise silent, but still clear, compared to using ambient sound while listening to music.
Touch controls are customizable and very nice, though if you touch the buds in just the right way while adjusting the fit, you might end up changing the volume or pausing/playing audio.
Using the earbuds with multiple devices is rather easy. It’s really pair and play. You don’t need to do any complicated procedures with turning the buds off or holding any buttons down and waiting for certain notifications every single time. Pairing to something other than your phone (like a Windows laptop), you do have to press and hold the touchpads on both buds and anticipate eventual beeps, then you’ll see it in the list of Bluetooth devices to connect to. But after pairing, it’s so easy to switch between my laptop and my phone.
The battery life is as good as described. It’s incredible. They can keep going for hours. After a rather busy 9-hour work day with lots of calls and some occasional music, toggling between my laptop and my phone, there was still 59% battery (that’s not nine straight hours of earbud use, but probably a spread-out total of around 5 or 6 hours).
The charging case is the same size as a Matchbox car. There’s nothing wrong with the case, no bulkiness or difficulty of operability. You get a light outside to see the battery status of the case, and you get a light inside to see the battery status of the earbuds.
Overall, the Samsung Galaxy Buds+ are great. They sound really good, they’re easy to use on different devices, and the battery lasts for a long time. There might be a lot of buds out there that sound alright while listening to music, but the call quality sets these apart from the rest. Music is good, calls are good, the Galaxy Buds+ will not disappoint!
– May 20, 2021
Great Earbuds, I was worried about purchasing wireless earbuds because usually the wired ones always fall out my ear even if I change different ear tips. But when I saw these came with wing tips I was a little bit relieved. I looked on online for good affordable truly wireless earbuds and saw these were recommended and since I have android I thought these would pair great. On top of that I got these on sale. These are by far the best earbuds I have ever bought. The sound Quality is great for truly appreciate earbuds the comfort is okay, they do bother me after around 2 hours but that’s just because earbuds in general do that to my ears. They stay in even when I’m working out and doing things. They last pretty long including the case charge. I just really enjoy these overall, I also do enjoy the ambient sound option these come with and the touch pads on the earbuds really neat.
– June 13, 2021
I’m a runner, and I have a hard time finding earbuds that stay in my ear without having to constantly adjust them. These are hands down the best pair of earbuds that I’ve ever used when it comes to running. They fit in my ear snuggly and block out enough noise when I need them to so I’m not distracted. I use them with my iPhone 11 Pro Max and have no issues with connectivity.
– June 27, 2021
I love them way better than AirPods 2nd Gen serious noise cancellation I can’t even hear a person next to me. But also provides ambient sound which allows you to hear around you. Exactly what I was looking for and it’s so comfortable it grooves around your ear and never get hurt. Long lasting as well it can last me two days before I have to charge the case. Also it works with my iPhone perfectly just download the app. Not many cases for it but you can find some cute ones on Aliexpress.
– June 28, 2021
When I first unpackaged the EarBuds so surprised by how easy it was to connect the buds to my phone. All I had to do was connect once and every time I opened the case it would automatically connect. I was messing with the Wear app and I passed by the ambient mode section so I tested each one individually, and really liked that I could still hear what I wanted t hear to I went with the medium setting of course that is what I prefer. The part of the Buds that had me in aww was the touch controllers they are very sensitive to touch and I love I can customize the touch with the Wear app. In all I am very satisfied with the purchase that I made. : )
– June 28, 2021
These sound great, battery last quite awhile, they can “fast charge”,so it’s really quick, I like the red, but most of all the fit !! They fit SO dang good, and they don’t fall out ever. I can wear them for hours with no aching ears, by far the best earbuds I’ve ever used. But they sound really good and with the Galaxy wearable app I can change the EQ, change the button layout and stuff. I love these earbuds and I got them for like $50 or $75 off. I’m happy with them and highly recommend !
– July 1, 2021
When I first tried the original Galaxy Buds, they were a revelation to me because they were the first true wireless earbuds I ever had. I have since owned and used different over the ear noise cancelling headphones, and true wireless earbuds with noise cancelling. However, I still found myself very excited to try out the new Galaxy Buds+ and so far here are my thoughts:
WHAT THESE DO WELL:
– The portability and ease of use remain the greatest quality of the Galaxy Buds line. The Buds+ case is so small that they can easily go in your pocket or throw them in your bag without being too bulky. After the initial set up (which is quick), all I had to do is flip open the case and they popped up on my Galaxy S10+ which was nice.
– The design of the Buds+ themselves are once again discrete and out of the way. Everything is self-contained with nothing that sticks out away from the Bud and I think that is the way these true earbuds should be designed to look!
– Another thing these maintain are the Wireless charging and USB-C charging interface. Both are very forward thinking and make it easy to charge them with the rest of your USB-C products.
– The sound is really a great step up for the Buds+ headphones! You can tell there is better clarity and deeper bass than the original Buds. Overall I am very impressed with the audio immersion these supply while being in a such a small package.
– Lastly, the Buds+ are excellent workout headphones! Seriously they never pop out no matter if I’m running, walking, at the gym, or playing sports. Really they work well in any environment.
WHAT THESE ARE MISSING:
– The biggest feature the Buds+ are missing are Active Noise Cancelling (ANC). I thought for sure Samsung would add this feature to the Buds+ given that other companies have done with same with their true wireless earbuds but I understand that Samsung wanted to maintain the small design and improve battery life in exchange for no ANC.
– That being said, I compared the Buds+ to more expensive true wireless earbuds with ANC and you can definitely tell the difference in the two. However, in my opinion as of early 2020, ANC in true wireless earbuds are nothing compared to that of ANC in over the ear style headphones. Sure it creates a vacuum affect but when you are not playing music it does not drown out sound that much.
– Other than that, these headphones really have everything you would want in a pair of true wireless earbuds.
GALAXY BUDS VS GALAXY BUDS+
– The main question I suspect people will have are: why would I buy these over the original Galaxy Buds? Yes, the two devices largely look the same besides some minor cosmetic changes. Still, there are four main reasons why you should choose these over the original Buds: Better Sound Quality, insane battery life, improved calls, and Apple Compatibility.
– As stated above, the sound is a much needed improvement to the original Buds. I used the Buds for their portability and ease of use, knowing the sound was just fine. Now I will use the Buds+ knowing that they can perform so much better and will be that much more enjoyable to use.
– The battery life is not even a competition. The Buds+ have 11 hours of listening on one charge plus the case provides an additional full charge meaning its 22 hours total. The Original Buds had 6 hours per charge and 13 hours with the case.
– The Buds+ also have 3 total microphones compared to the Buds 2 microphones. I have definitely noticed better call quality while using these which are a huge plus for me because I love using the Buds+ for calls.
– Lastly, Samsung released an Apple iOS app for the Buds+ which make them much more useful when connecting them to an Apple device. That might not be super useful to some of you, but I think it’s always better to have more compatibility than less.
– After a week or month of using the Galaxy Buds+ I believe they will quickly become your go to earbuds. Sure you may get better sound out of more expensive headphones or noise cancelling earbuds, but you will not get the do it all utility of the Buds+ at this price point anywhere else. They sound great, have nice call quality, are simple to use, will last forever, and can be used anywhere you need to use headphones. The Buds+ will once again be the only headphones I use everyday and I think it will be for you too.
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