The Google Pixel Buds A-Sequence are the most recent entry within the wi-fi headphone market by the search-engine behemoth. They’re small true wireless earbuds that, whereas aimed primarily at Google and Android smartphone customers, will carry out a superb job with any system that may deal with Bluetooth 4.0+ – in order that covers just about any good system from the latest previous.
In addition to efficiency enhancements, the obvious distinction between this, the third iteration to bear the Pixel Buds title, and its two forebears, is with the launch worth.
The Pixel Buds A-Sequence are yours for a aggressive £99 ($99), in contrast with the £179 ($179, AU$279) determine the Pixel Buds 2 got here in the marketplace for final 12 months. That’s a formidable drop in worth and brings these Google buds proper right into a vastly well-liked part of the market.
At this worth, they even undercut apparent rivals comparable to Cambridge Audio’s Melomania 1 Plus (£120, $140, AU$185) by a big quantity.
Accessible in two finishes, white and a not-quite-grey ‘Darkish Olive’, the Google Pixel Buds A-Sequence are available a neat little cardboard field that incorporates the buds themselves, the tactile little ‘easy pebble’ charging case, a USB-C charging cable and three totally different sized units of eartips.
The little rubber fins to stabilise the in-ear match stay from the Buds 2, they usually, mixed with accurately sized ideas, present a safe and cozy expertise. The earbuds are gentle, coming in at simply over 5g every, and sit firmly within the ear. They’re IPX4 resistant, so needs to be nice with water or sweat splashes, however the case is just not rated.
The earbuds do not need active noise-cancelling – that’s a uncommon function in buds at this worth – however they provide cheap passive noise-cancelling with the right match. They do, although, have a spatial vent to stop that bunged-up feeling some in-ears present; which means that some exterior noise inevitably will get by means of.
That’s not essentially a foul factor; it means the wearer is extra conscious of their setting when commuting or outdoors (biking and highway crossing, as an example, are made a lot safer with that further aural consciousness).
Construct and options
The buds maintain sufficient energy for as much as 5 hours of listening time (or, heaven forbid, two and a half hours’ discuss time), and the case has sufficient juice for as much as 4 expenses, giving round 24 hours of cost all-in. In case your buds run out of energy, a 15-minute cost will supply round three hours of listening time, which needs to be sufficient to cowl the commute. The charging case itself has a light-weight that signifies the state of play together with your buds, together with the quantity of energy accessible.
Google Pixel Buds A-Sequence tech specs
Bluetooth model 5.0
Battery life As much as 24 hours (from buds and case)
Dimensions (hwd) 2 x three x 1.7cm
Weight 5.06g (every)
Connecting your Pixel Buds A-Sequence to a wise system is both easy or very simple, relying on the system. For Android units with Quick Pair, simply open up the lid of the A-Sequence’ case close to to your smartphone and the units routinely discover one another. For an iOS system it’s a extra old-school course of, however nonetheless simple sufficient. When you’ve pushed the button on the charging case, with the lid up, discover the earbuds on the system’s Bluetooth settings, and pair them from there.
Google’s wi-fi earbuds are, after all, aimed before everything at Google and Android telephones, however they work completely nicely with iOS merchandise, tablets, laptops and the like. With non-Android equipment although, you gained’t be capable to use the Google Assistant that brings a lot to the Pixel Buds occasion.
The Google Assistant works properly, offering quick access to all the advantages that it implies, together with Adaptive Sound, a neat trick that adjusts the amount of the buds relying on extraneous noise. This works fairly successfully however could be turned off within the app if it’s not for you. There’s additionally a helpful ‘discover system’ function in the event you’ve mislaid considered one of your buds down the facet of the couch.
After all, you’ll be able to hear notifications from the assistant for issues comparable to emails, messages or visitors info. And the buds additionally give entry to Google Translate in your telephone, which could possibly be helpful as soon as the world opens up once more. The buds’ microphones come into play right here, performing as your individual modern-day Babelfish.
The buds themselves deal with primary controls competently, with the few primary instructions administered by a faucet (or faucets) of a finger on the bud. Every bud responds in the identical means, so studying the faucets required is each simple and completely intuitive. A single faucet will begin or pause your music, or reply a name; a double-tap will finish a name or skip ahead a observe (in addition to stopping the Assistant); and a triple faucet will return to the earlier observe.
And that’s your lot so far as guide controls by way of the buds goes. Quantity change is completed by way of speaking to Google Assistant, nonetheless, so non-Android customers must alter the noise enter on their system. It’s a disgrace to not have a quantity management on the buds (the Melomania 1 Plus have the flexibility – and people buds will discuss to each Siri and Google Assistant, too), however at this worth, it is not a deal-breaker.
We’re quite happy with the efficiency we get from the Google Pixel Buds A-Sequence. It’s a clear, balanced sound that doesn’t favour any a part of the sonic spectrum.
Google says its analysis reveals that “most individuals describe nice sound as full, clear and pure. That is what guides our audio tuning course of.” We’re completely joyful to report that that is what we hear from these little buds. There’s not one of the considerably harsh and sporting treble for which earlier Pixel Buds had been criticised, and the bass is decently quick and snappy with out being overbearing.
We cue up Lou Reed’s Stroll On The Wildside and that acquainted bassline greets us warmly, adopted by brushed snares after which Reed’s voice, intimate and clear. Every sonic strand is definitely and comfortably adopted proper by means of to the breathy sax on the finish of the observe, and we discover ourselves wanting to take heed to extra.
We don’t fancy the subsequent track within the playlist, so a double faucet on the left earbud strikes us on to John Martyn’s Small Hours. It’s a nice check of a speaker’s (or headphones’) dynamic potential, with frequent shifts in quantity, however the Sequence-A cope nicely, delivering the music faithfully. There’s maybe only a contact extra element within the midrange from these Cambridge Audio Melomania 1 Plus rivals, however the Pixel Buds are total a well-rounded pay attention.
That approachable, entertaining sound is constant it doesn’t matter what music we play by means of the A-Sequence, and that, mixed with the consolation of those light-weight buds, makes them a winner in our e-book.
Most significantly, the Google Pixel Buds A-Sequence behave impeccably all through testing. The connection is rock strong, they usually by no means lose sign or give the trace of a crackle, whether or not we’re inside sitting at our desk, or within the vegetable aisle on the grocery store. Their efficiency on calls is respectable too, with no points from both finish so far as name high quality goes, the mics on every bud selecting up our voice clearly.
For not an enormous outlay, you get all the pieces the pricier Pixel Buds 2 offered so far as Google Assistant talents go, however with an all-round sound efficiency that stands up there with one of the best out there at this worth. Although they’re aimed primarily at Android house owners, we will fairly fortunately advocate the Google Pixel Buds A-Sequence to iOS customers too, if they’re out there for some comfy, dependable, good-sounding in-ears.
Learn our information to the best in-ear headphones
Learn our Cambridge Melomania 1 Plus review
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