Sisters worth quoting in love with Alexa, Amazon’s First generation Echo Buds they were a nice pair of headphones. Of course, they didn’t have the same sound quality or noise cancellation skills as premium options from Apple and Samsung, but they were cheap, decent, and worked better with Amazon’s voice assistant than any other pair.
With its second generation, the Seattle-based technology giant is refining its buds into something even more competitive. Wireless charging and noise canceling combine with a new pair of 5.7mm drivers and transformer microphones to create what is probably the best overall experience in wireless headphones under $ 150.
Add to that some of the best app integrations available today, and the new Echo Buds are some of my favorite jack-of-all-trades headphones.
New for Gen Two
The new Echo Buds don’t really look like their predecessors, except that they’re made from the same matte plastic. The old case was flatter than tall, with the headphones placed at an angle to the inside, while the new wireless charging case is tall and thin.
They look and feel more simplified. The headphones themselves are now completely round on the outside, and what were once two shiny, raised tactile controls don’t stand out from the rest of the headphones, other than the Amazon arrow logo.
Noise cancellation chips, new microphones and better conductors mean the new Echo Buds feel a bulky touch, even though they are still 21 percent smaller than their predecessors. However, I had no problems with them in my medium sized ears; land firmly in the post-The Frankenstein Monster it was wireless headphones.
Finding the right fit is a big priority for Amazon. Pop open the case, attach it to your phone’s Alexa app, and make sure you’ve chosen the right earpiece size (Amazon includes four options, as well as two silicone earphone sizes), thanks to a adaptation test in the app.
I like the fit of Echo Buds a little more than that AirPods Pro (8/10, WIRED Recommends), because they don’t have the small elephant trunks of the AirPod, but I have to forward it to Apple to cancel the rumor. Even with the wrong size of ears on Apple’s flagship headphones, they reduce background noise noticeably better than these Amazon buds. However, Echo Buds beats AirPods Pro in battery life (5 hours with noise cancellation on the Apple 4), and come with a fast charging capability that will give you 2 hours of listening time with a 15-minute journey to the wall.
As with most non-Apple headphones, the Echo Buds work better with Android phones than iPhones, even if they are compatible with Siri and Google Assistant, in addition to the Amazon assistant. I spent the vast majority of my listening time using one Samsung Note 20 Ultra 5G that Samsung provided me with a long-term loan, and they worked perfectly. I also agree with mine Galaxy Watch with ease.
If you like Alexa. the best part about bugs is how easy it is to call Amazon’s AI assistant. I enjoyed using the Echo Buds to set timers, check the time before running, and check my calendar with my hands free.
Obviously, your mileage will vary depending on how much you like voice assistants and Alexa in particular, but it’s worth trying the voice activation feature before turning it off.