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Google Pixel Buds A-Series creates ripples

This ear plug offers zero compromises on the sonic front

Mathures Paul Published 01.09.21, 04:29 AM
Google Pixel Buds A-Series offers a clean and clear sound while the design remains a winner.

Google Pixel Buds A-Series offers a clean and clear sound while the design remains a winner. Pictures: The Telegraph

Review 1: You get well-balanced sound out of these Cadbury Shots-sized wireless earbuds.

Review 2: The biggest kick you will get out of these is excellent build from a reputed brand name.

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Review 3: It’s the perfect music cans during workouts.

From whatever angle you look at Google Pixel Buds A-Series, it’s a winner. What you get is a well-designed pair of true wireless earbuds that packs a bunch of Google Assistant tricks and, of course, it’s a seamless match for Android phones. Affordable? More on that later.

Uncompromised sound quality

The department in which the Pixel Buds A-Series makes us fall for it is sound, which is far more consistent than on OnePlus Buds Pro or Nothing Ear 1. What you get is a full sound from 12mm drivers with just about enough bass while the low-end has the right amount of zing. The subtle country-pop adventures of Kacey Musgraves on her new song Justified actually gets justified on these earbuds. She sings If I cried just a little, and then laughed in the middle / If I hate you, and I love you, and I change my mind and the earbuds keep her voice in the front while offering excellent instrument separation. Shawn Mendes’s sensual delight Summer of Love is also a sonic thrill while the harmonisation between Selena Gomez and Camilo on 999 is spot on.

In case you seek a degree of vigorous bass, head over to the Pixel Buds app to turn on bass boost, which won’t compromise the overall sound quality but it will somewhat match the bass level of Sony WF-XB700. Yet, clarity is among the best you will find around Rs 10,000. What I found lacking is active noise cancellation, something that the consumer deserves at this price point. Though without it, I didn’t struggle listening to Cat Stevens or Donovan standing on the verandah, watching cars go by.

If Google Assistant is important to you, these are among the best earbuds to buy. You know it’s there but let’s run you through it: If you need directions, simply ask Google and you will get a clear answer. And there is the power of real-time translations and notifications being read to the user.

The quality of the mics is quite good, isolating most environmental noises; you voice will always standout during meetings, thanks to the dual beamforming mics. While reviewing over a week, we didn’t come across any connectivity glitches that have been pointed out by a handful of reviewers.

Comfortable design

However good is the transparent design of Nothing’s Ear 1, it’s a wide-ish case and the same goes for OnePlus Buds Pro. Pixel Buds A-Series comes in a carrying case that fits every trouser pocket and you wouldn’t stop playing around with the case.

In the box are differet eartips well as a USB-C to USB-A charging cable. And there are fixed little stabiliser fins to ensure the buds don’t fall off and they are super comfortable. The shape is unlike the AirPods or the Samsung Galaxy Buds2, which is a good thing. Where the device loses a point is lack of colour options; the only choice in India is Clearly White.

While Google has decided to leave out wireless charging, the company has retained IPX4 water and sweat resistance, meaning it’s good to go for gyms and showers. Battery life too is respectable, getting five hours of listening time or 24 hours with the charging case and 2.5 hours of talk time on a single charge. If you misplace the earbuds, use the Find My Device option in the app to get it back.

Should you get it?

The pricing in the US or the UK market makes this inexpensive but in India Rs 9,999 deserves something like ANC. But, unlike any other brand at this price point, audio quality is unparalleled. This is the most balanced sound available. Google Pixel Buds A-Series indeed sounds as good as more expensive rivals and makes a great companion for Android phones.

At a glance

Google Pixel Buds A-Series offers IPX4 water and sweat resistance

Google Pixel Buds A-Series offers IPX4 water and sweat resistance The Telegraph

Device: Google Pixel Buds A-Series

Price: Rs 9,999

High points

• Offers the most balanced sound in its price category

• Excellent design

• IPX4 rated

• Comes with top Google Assistant features

Muffled notes

• No ANC or wireless charging

• Only one colour option available in India

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