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Good sound quality
Excellent battery life
Tricky to get out of the case
Can slip out of earsOur Verdict
If you’re looking for a simple pair of wireless earbuds and don’t care about noise cancelling, then the Onyx Ace Pro are an excellent choice. Audio sounds great, battery life is long, and the price is one we can all afford. Not bad at all in these difficult times.Best Prices Today: Tronsmart Oynx Ace Pro
Over the past year or so there’s been plenty of budget friendly wireless earbuds released that feature active noise cancellation and other fancy modes. The thing is those capabilities have begun to stretch what budget-friendly really means.
Tronsmart seems to have spotted this and has launched the Onyx Ace Pro buds that keep things simple and the cost affordable. But is this minimalist approach a blessing or a curse?Design & Build
Half in design
Pretty much all of the wireless earbuds I’ve reviewed over the last few years have come with pill-shaped charging cases that have almost no external decoration. Tronsmart has obviously gotten bored of this ascetic approach, so with the Onyx Ace Pro there is a silver trim around the flip-top opening, plus a silver panel on the front that houses the four lights that tell you how much charge it holds.
Opening up the box and taking out the buds is a little fiddly, but once extracted they bear a very Apple AirPods aesthetic. There’s no rubber ear cups for holding them in your ear canal, instead smooth plastic ovals are attached to short stalks, with the former resting against the openings in your ears. Basically, if you’ve used a pair of regular Apple AirPods in the last ten years then you’ll know how these work.
As is normal with this design, it’s one-size fits most with no silicone tips. So, those who have had problems in the past with semi in-ear buds slipping out by themselves, may prefer to go for a pair of in-ear buds like the affordable Redmi AirDots.
Inside the buds Tronsmart has fitted 13mm composite polymer drivers to deliver the audio, all controlled by a Qualcomm QCC3040 processor that offers aptX adaptive audio decoding and provides cVc 8.0 call reduction technology to help make phone calls clear and free from unwanted artefacts.
The plastic construction means the Onyx Ace Pro are featherlight, with speakers at one end of the ovals, two microphones for each bud, and a touch sensitive control area on the outside of each stalk.
Martyn Casserley / Foundry
There are a pretty standard range of touch commands available, with a double tap on either one triggering play/pause, tapping and holding for 2 seconds on the right bud will skip to the next track, while doing the same on the left one will take you to the previous track. Thankfully, there is also a volume control option, by tapping once on the right bud to turn up and once on the left to turn down.
The Onyx Ace Pro support various digital assistants, depending on which smartphone you use, and you can launch this by tapping the right bud three times. You can also use the play/pause command to answer or end phone calls.
Pairing the buds is simple, with the first time requiring the flip top case to be opened (with the buds still inside), then pressing and holding the pairing button found on the bottom of the case next to the USB-C charging port. When the lights start to flash, it means the pairing mode is active, then it’s just a case of selecting them from the available devices menu on your smartphone or other device.
Once this is set up, they connect automatically every other time you take them out of the case. I found the connections to be reliable and solid throughout my time with the buds, and the Bluetooth 5.2 technology even allows you to venture about ten metres away from your device before the signal is lost.
An IPX5 rating assures you that the buds can be used in the rain without worrying they’ll go kaputt, plus they should also survive the odd splash or two.Sound Quality & Features
Good audio quality
Gaming Mode for enhanced audio/video syncing
The Onyx Ace Pro buds are capable of some very nice audio. Spoken word content sounds rich and full, with enough bottom end to make everything feel solid and warm. Put on some music and again there are pleasing results, with a wide frequency spread that can handle folk to metal without skipping a beat. There’s also plenty of volume on offer, although do be careful with this as prolonged use (of any loud earphones) can damage your hearing.
I was impressed with the quality of the tones coming out of the buds when they were securely wedged into my ears, but things do drop away a bit if the buds get slightly dislodged. When the buds are fully in your ear, they create enough of a sealed chamber to blot out most of the background noise in a room or busy environment.
Martyn Casserley / Foundry
But the shape of them, and the lack of any different sized covers that you find on the in-ear bud style alternatives, means it can be a little too easy to knock them out from those firm fits when operating the touch controls, allowing noise to get in. This isn’t a problem particular to these headphones, it’s just a design compromise that has always been attached to this style of earphones.
Conversely, if you don’t like having buds jammed in your ear canal, then these are a good alternative. The Nothing Ear (Stick) are another option if you have more to spend.
There’s no active noise cancelling, and therefore no ambient mode that can keep you aware of what’s going on around you while you enjoy content on the buds. This is fine if you want to get rid of the din that’s usually going on in the world, but does make you oblivious (aurally anyway) to your surroundings.
What is on offer is a Gaming Mode, which beefs up the audio/video synchronisation capabilities of the buds, with a slight hit to battery life in the process. The idea is that you can use the Onyx Ace Pro more comfortably with games, as the sounds you hear will stick closely to video you see on your handset.
It worked fine for me and also doubled up to improve the syncing of the buds to my TV so I could watch Netflix at night without waking the family or getting dizzy from the delay of people’s lips moving before I heard them speak. You access the Gaming Mode by tapping the left bud three times, and turn it off by repeating the process.
Phone calls were equally good, with our recipients reporting clear audio with little in the way of distortion or noise.Battery Life & Charging
Over 6 hours from single charge
Case can hold enough energy for 5 recharges
Around 1hr 20mins recharge time for buds
These have to be some of the most impressive buds I’ve tried in terms of battery life. From a single charge in the case the buds are able to pass the six hour mark before needing to pop them back in for a refresh.
Admittedly, it does take over an hour to get them back up to 100%, but that’s a price I’d be happy to pay for the prolonged listening sessions they provide.
Tronsmart doesn’t state the battery sizes for the buds or the charging case, but the latter is no slouch either, having enough reserves (after a full two hour charge) to replenish the buds around five times. A total of 36 hours is commendable.
Martyn Casserley / FoundryPrice & Availability
You can pick up the Onyx Ace Pro buds from Aliexpress for £29.99/$39.99.
The company also told me that these should be coming to Amazon but they are nowhere to be found at the time of writing.
Looking at the competition, the most obvious alternative is the Redmi AirDots that you can get on Amazon for £25/$25 and which have largely similar appointments to the Onyx Ace Pro.
If you want noise cancelling, then you’ll need to spend a bit more, but the Redmi Buds Pro 3 are an excellent option at £65 on Amazon UK and $59.99 on Amazon US.
Check out more options in our roundup of the best budget wireless earbuds.Verdict
Tronsmart lives up to the latter half of its name, delivering a solid pair of wireless buds that provide good audio, are comfortable to wear, and have excellent battery life all for a price that most people can afford.
If you’ve been wary of switching to wireless earbuds, these would be the perfect place to start, as you can always upgrade to a pair with active noise cancelling later on without feeling like you’ve wasted your money.
The only real blemish is how easy it can be to dislodge them when using the controls, but if your ears fit with this style of earphone, I think you’ll be very happy with the Onyx Ace Pro.
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The biggest issue I had with the first-generation Pixel Buds was blocking out external sounds, and sadly the new Google Pixel “true wireless” earbuds are only marginally better in this area. The lack of any active noise isolation in the low end is enough for me to not rely on them when I’m flying, since the engine noise will seep through.
Had Google added Active Noise Cancellation (ANC), instead of relying on just passive noise isolation from the ear tips, I’d imagine sound quality would be significantly better in all areas. Mainly speaking, in the realm of bass, or lack thereof: it’s all pretty flat, especially if you’re expecting the same level of thump produced from the Nuraloop. That’s not to say that everything is terrible.
The middle and high-end sound fine to me, and overall sound quality is good. Listening to my daughter’s piano recital, for example, each piano note came through crystal clear. Once again, this comes down to how Google tweaked the sound profile – and because there’s little bass, everything else sounds clearer. If you like your earbuds to sound neutral, I suspect you’ll like the Pixel Buds’ EQ.
Alternatively, there are third-party companies selling memory foam ear tips with better passive noise isolation, so they’re worth checking out. Google’s not the only one having this issue, mind. I’ve received countless reports of AirPods Pro owners complaining about the same fit problem; especially when the Apple’s ANC requires a tight seal to activate.
I can’t help but yearn for Nura’s new Nuraloop or my gold standard JH Audio 16 v2 Pro with Fostex over the ear Bluetooth module. I use these two products as benchmarks because, at two different price points – $199 and $3,000+ for the Nuraloop and JHAudio 16 v2 Pro, respectively – they each demonstrate how you can check off all the boxes: outstanding sound quality, comfort, battery life, and ease of use.
Two neat features Google did add are auto volume and an air vent on each earbud. On the spec-sheet, they look great, but in real-world use, I wouldn’t miss them if they weren’t included. The auto-volume control was either too delayed to be of use, or I could barely notice the difference.
The other feature that I was upbeat about was the integration of Google Translation. Sadly, you still need to open up the app on your phone for things to work. At the end of the day, I’d still rather just use my Pixel 4 XL, instead of jumping through all the hoops required to get the Pixel Buds playing properly with Translate.
That goes for using the Google Assistant, which is also integrated into the Pixel Buds. Again, it works, and I do like the idea of having it there on the rare occasion when I need it. All the same, I’d much rather have longer battery life and ANC.
The earbuds surface is touch-sensitive, allowing you to change volume control by swiping forward (or up) to increase or back (or down) to decrease volume. Then tap to pause and tape again to resume. I like that whatever I’m playing automatically pauses when I remove one or both earbuds from my ears. It resumes after re-inserting one back in.
Sid Meier’s popular turn-based strategy flying game is back, only this time the battle takes place above the Pacific Sea with the U.S. against Japan as World War II is unfolding.
Sid Meier’s popular turn-based strategy flying game is back, only this time the battle takes place above the Pacific Sea with the U.S. against Japan as World War II is unfolding.
Ace Patrol: Pacific Skies is the sequel to the dogfight title that turned board game style playing into an epic battle that changed history. This time, you don’t have to worry about those pesky in-app purchases…Design
Just like its predecessor, Pacific Skies puts players on a virtual board game where movement is represented by hexagonal spaces. Players can choose to play as either Japan or the U.S. and are able to select the plane that their commander will fly.
Pilots each have their own summary card that shows their rank, maneuverability, speed, and other important statistical information. Use these cards to determine which pilots you’d like to take as your wingman.
When it is your turn, your available moves will be displayed as arrows in different spaces on the grid. Some spaces have multiple move options. Available moves are blue, attack moves are green, and unavailable moves are gray. In this game, pilots learn a lot of new flying tricks right at the beginning, so you’ll be able to direct them into barrel rolls and loops early on. Each available movement will have a designated arrow. For example, an arrow pointing straight ahead, but slightly upward means your plane will move forward at a slight incline.
Friendly territory on the board will be outlined in blue. Enemy territory is outlined in red. Try to avoid entering enemy areas or you may get a few unexpected bullet holes.
You can see everything on the game board by dragging your finger across the screen. Move your view to where the enemy planes are to help determine your upcoming moves. You can also rotate the view by placing two fingers on the screen and moving them in a circular motion. Use two fingers and pinch to zoom in and out, as well.
When you select your movement, your plane will move to the designated space. Then, your enemy will take a turn. When you are in a dogfight, screen’s display switches from the hexagonal board to a mini cinematic clip. The cinematic shows you the result of your attack. If the enemy ship is destroyed, the plane will explode and a pilot will eject and parachute down.Gameplay
When you first start the game, you will pick your side, either the U.S. or Japan, and pick your military preference, either Navy or Army. Then, you will select a squadron commander. He will be the first pilot to learn new moves and increase in rank. The first few levels are training missions. It is a good idea to send out different pilots to train each mission. That way, if something happens to your commander, like he is captured or his plane is destroyed, your backup pilots will be experienced enough to compete against the big dogs on higher levels.
During the game, you will take a turn, using all available planes, and then the enemy will take a turn. Send your pilots into battle to complete whatever missions you are tasked with. Sometimes, you will need to take down enemy planes. Other times, you will need to destroy P.O.W. camps. Even if you lose a plane during a mission, it doesn’t necessarily mean you did not complete the task. Keep fighting until the bitter end.
If you do take damage, your plane will suffer poor performance, but you can still fight. If your plane goes down over enemy territory, you will lose the pilot that was flying that particular plane for a few levels. When pilots are rescued, they get their plane back with full health again.
As missions are completed, the pilot that was flying at the time will learn new maneuvers, like sharp turns and full loops. You are able to select the new moves that your pilot learns. Be sure to give each one a different specialty so that you have a well-rounded team.
This game also includes multiplayer mode. You can either play against your friend in the same room in pass-and-play “Hot Pad” mode, or play against others online through Game Center. You can either invite friends to play with you, or get teamed up with a random stranger.
Pacific Skies features 180 missions set against iconic WWII battles, including Pearl Harbor, Midway, and Guadalcanal. You can customize your pilots by giving them new names, and even disable male and female pilot options for a more realistic version of history.The Good
Just like its predecessor, this game makes good use of touch gestures to make a strategy turn-based board game into an action-packed dogfight. Your pilots don’t heal right away, but you don’t have to purchase medicine for them, just give them some bed rest and they will be fine on their own. You also don’t have to pay to unlock new missions. The whole game is included in the download price.
Multiplayer mode is awesome. This game is twice as fun when you are playing against real opponents who have real strategy planning.The Bad
The save and auto-save functions can be misleading. To save a game, you must select the save space two times or it will not work. The game will auto-save during missions, but there is no pause button or menu screen so some people think that the game restarts if you close the app in the middle of the mission. It doesn’t. It picks up right where you left off, even in the middle of a level.
Because there is no pause or menu screen during a mission, you can’t replay a level if you know you are doing terrible at it. I’d like to be able to start a mission over, even in the middle of a level.Value
Sid Meier’s Ace Patrol: Pacific Skies costs $4.99. This is the average price of a board game title. In an unusual turn of events, this is one of those rare times when a game developer decides to make something that was previously free-to-play (Ace Patrol) into a paid download. I guess those outspoken gamers who always accuse developers of being “scam artists” who are being “greedy” and trying to “rip people off” are finally being heard.Conclusion
Fans of the original title will love this game. It features all of the same excitement of the mid-air dogfights and gravity-defying maneuvers, without the in-app purchase looming over your head. This game is available for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Download it in the App Store today.Related Apps
Muy buena duración de la batería
Compatible con iOS y AndroidContras
Sin detección intraauricular
Sin control de ecualizador
No compatible con la alta resolución
Sin carga inalámbricaNuestro veredicto
Los Beats Studio Buds+ tienen la mayoría de las funciones de los AirPods Pro, e incluso añaden compatibilidad extra con Android por menos dinero.Mejores precios hoy: Beats Studio Buds+
Apple compró Beats dos años antes de que se anunciaran los primeros AirPods. Hoy en día, los auriculares Beats son muy parecidos a los AirPods, lo cual es positivo teniendo en cuenta que a menudo cuestan menos pero ofrecen funciones similares.
Los Beats Studio Buds+ son los mejores auriculares Bluetooth inalámbricos de Beats hasta la fecha, y son una gran alternativa a los AirPods Pro de Apple.
Los Buds+ prescinden de algunas de las funciones más avanzadas que encontrarás en los AirPods Pro de 299 € / MXN$5,999 / US$249 y otros modelos de AirPods, como el audio espacial y el cambio automático de dispositivo. Pero por 199,95 € / MXN$3,299 / US$169, son más asequibles y tienen una mejor integración con los smartphones Android.
Durante el tiempo que pasé con los Buds+, no eché de menos las funciones adicionales que te ofrecen los AirPods Pro por 100 € / MXN$2,700 / US$80 más, por lo que te sugiero que ahorres dinero y te decantes por los Beats.Diseño y calidad de fabricación
Cuatro tamaños de almohadilla en la caja
Diseño inteligente de agarre/botón
Los Studio Buds+ tienen un diseño atractivo y funcional que, por suerte, no intenta imitar a los AirPods. En lugar de un vástago largo, los auriculares son pequeños, con un borde cónico que puedes agarrar entre el pulgar y el dedo índice para sacarlos del estuche o de tu oreja.
Se trata de un diseño inteligente, que además incorpora un botón físico en el borde donde está impreso el logotipo “b” de Beats en cada auricular. El agarre me permitió girar los auriculares para conseguir un mejor ajuste en lugar de tener que empujarlos dolorosamente hacia el interior de la oreja.
Al pulsar el botón de cualquiera de los auriculares, se produce un cierto grado de tensión, pero si lo haces en el ángulo correcto, no pasa nada. Con un peso de 5 g por auricular, apenas se notan en los oídos.
Henry Burrell / Foundry
He probado el modelo negro y dorado, aunque también hay una versión en color marfil y otra translúcida que acapara titulares y que tiene muy buena pinta. Los auriculares negros y las almohadillas retienen el polvo y la suciedad con facilidad, mientras que el estuche de plástico mate presenta algunos arañazos superficiales, aunque sorprendentemente intacta después de una semana de guardarla en bolsas y bolsillos sin mucho cuidado.
Beats ha incluido cuatro tamaños de almohadillas en la caja, algo que me alegró teniendo en cuenta que canales auditivos bastante pequeños. Pude conseguir un ajuste hermético decente con el tamaño más pequeño, ‘XS’, por lo que deberías conseguir un buen ajuste con una de las opciones.
Los Buds+ me resultaron cómodos de llevar durante un par de horas, pero a partir de entonces empecé a sentir un poco de dolor, algo habitual en los auriculares de sellado cerrado.
Los Studio Buds+ tienen un diseño atractivo y funcional que, por suerte, no intenta imitar a los AirPods”
Por si te puede servir de algo, los Buds+ tienen puntas circulares de silicona, similares a las de muchos otros auriculares inalámbricos. Los AirPods Pro me parecen más cómodos porque tienen las puntas ligeramente planas y ovaladas.
Los auriculares se colocan cómodamente en el estuche de carga con forma de canto rodado, y se mantienen en su sitio con el agradable sonido que hace un potente imán. El estuche se carga mediante USB-C en lugar de Lightning.
Personalmente, lo agradezco, ya que utilizo bastantes dispositivos USB-C en mi trabajo, pero si tienes un iPhone puede que prefieras los AirPods por su puerto Lightning. Hay un cable USB-C a USB-C en la caja.Calidad de sonido
Sonido universal y completo
Buena respuesta de graves
No son compatibles con la alta resolución
El sonido de los Studio Buds+ es excelente. Hay poco que los diferencie de los AirPods Pro, los Bose QuietComfort Earbuds 2 y los OnePlus Buds 2 Pro que he usado o analizado últimamente.
Like A Prayer de Madonna suena fresca y vibrante, con el bajo bailando en la mezcla con la batería aguda y los coros.
En un vagón de metro londinense abarrotado, con mucho ruido pero con la cancelación de ruido activada, pude oír el tono del bajo en $20 de Boygenius mejor que con otros auriculares y lo pude apreciar más.
Beats tiene fama de tener un sonido grave y eso es así con los Buds+. No lo hacen de forma exagerada, pero sí que hay una mayor presencia de graves que en los AirPods. Por mala suerte, los Buds+ (como los AirPods) no tienen controles de ecualización. Tienes que conformarte con lo que Beats considere mejor y, por suerte, está bastante bien.
Cuando escuché Machinehead de Bush a un volumen decente, noté un ligero toque de distorsión en los auriculares, posiblemente debido a la mezcla aguda de esta canción de los noventa. Sin embargo, todos los instrumentos suenan nítidos y claros. Los Buds+ suenan muy bien, independientemente del género musical.
Pocos auriculares inalámbricos admiten la reproducción de música en alta resolución y estos no están entre ellos. Al igual que los AirPods, los Buds+ no pueden reproducir canciones de Apple Music en alta resolución a pesar de ser auriculares fabricados por Apple. En su lugar, admiten los códecs AAC y SBC ampliamente utilizados a través de Bluetooth 5.3.
Los Buds+ no tienen controles de ecualización; tienes que conformarte con lo que Beats considere mejor y, por suerte, está bastante bien”Cancelación de ruido y funciones inteligentes
Rápido emparejamiento con iOS y Android
No detecta los auriculares internos
Admito que es un poco extraño que mis comentarios sobre las funciones inteligentes de los Beats vayan a ser más largas que la sección de calidad de sonido, pero los auriculares inalámbricos tienen funciones inteligentes tan diferentes hoy en día que lleva más tiempo explicarlas.
Cuando los sacas del estuche, los Buds+ se conectan rápidamente al último dispositivo emparejado. La mayor parte del tiempo los usé con un iPhone, un Pixel y un Mac, y cada vez que cambié entre ellos lo hice manualmente en la configuración de los dispositivos.
Uno de los puntos fuertes de los Buds+ son sus funciones inteligentes que abarcan iOS y Android, a diferencia de los AirPods, que solo ofrecen cosas como el emparejamiento rápido con iPhones.
Uno de sus mayores defectos es su falta de detección en el oído, por lo que la música no se detendrá automáticamente cuando te quites un auricular ni empezará a sonar cuando te lo vuelvas a poner. Esto se debe en parte a que los Beats no tienen el chip H1 que sí tienen los AirPods.
Henry Burrell / Foundry
En el modo de emparejamiento, aparecen ventanas emergentes para conectar rápidamente los Buds+ a iPhones o teléfonos Android mediante el estándar Fast Pair de Google.
Cuando se conectan a un dispositivo Apple, los Beats se pueden detectar en otros dispositivos Apple conectados a la misma cuenta de iCloud, pero no se produce el cambio automático de dispositivo que se consigue con los AirPods. También se pierde la función de prueba de ajuste de los auriculares.
Los Buds+ también funcionan con el conmutador de audio de Android: pueden estar conectados a dos dispositivos Android simultáneamente. Al pausar el audio en un dispositivo y pulsar el botón de reproducción en otro, los auriculares se conectan automáticamente. Los auriculares también se pueden encontrar con la aplicación Google Find Device y la función ‘Buscar mi’ de Apple.
La cancelación activa de ruido (ANC) es buena, pero está un poco por debajo de los AirPods Pro de segunda generación y un paso por debajo del líder de la industria: los Bose QuietComfort Earbuds 2. Aun así, me encanta lo compactos que son los Buds+ en comparación con los grandes Bose.
La cancelación activa de ruido (ANC) es buena, pero está un poco por debajo de los AirPods Pro de segunda generación”
Pude escuchar canciones fácilmente en un tren abarrotado con los Beats e incluso cuando un tipo se puso a taladrar durante una hora frente a mi ventana. Los ruidos siguen ahí, pero muy lejos, detrás de un océano de señal de cancelación de ruido.
Hay un silbido de fondo de ruido estático cuando los Buds+ están conectados que no encuentro con los AirPods Pro pero que está presente en otros auriculares inalámbricos. No lo noté la mayor parte del tiempo cuando sonaba música, pero es audible escuchando pódcasts en un entorno silencioso.
El modo Ambiente es lo suficientemente bueno como para que puedas seguir con los Buds puestos cuando quieras escuchar tu entorno o charlar con la gente sin quitártelos (aunque probablemente deberías hacerlo).
Los Buds+ admiten la reproducción de audio espacial para Apple Music en iPhones y aplicaciones compatibles en Android, pero carecen del seguimiento de la cabeza o el audio espacial personalizado de los AirPods, y no puedes activarlo o desactivarlo en las pistas compatibles. Esto es un poco molesto, ya que prefiero tenerlo desactivado cuando escucho Apple Music.
Tienes que usar la aplicación Beats para cambiar entre los modos de cancelación de ruido y ambiente usando un teléfono Android, pero los controles aparecen en el Centro de control del iPhone como lo hacen con los AirPods.
Henry Burrell / FoundryAutonomía de la batería y carga
Duración de la batería increíblemente buena
Sin carga inalámbrica
Los Studio Buds+ duran y duran. Beats dice que se obtienen 36 horas con los auriculares y el estuche completamente cargados, y he comprobado que es así. Solo tuve que cargar el estuche una vez en una semana completa de uso, usando los Buds+ durante varias horas al día.
Se obtienen seis horas de reproducción con ANC o nueve sin ANC, y el estuche añade hasta 27 horas más con una carga completa. La duración de la batería es otro de los puntos fuertes de los Buds+, y es la vez que menos me he preocupado por la carga al analizar unos auriculares.
No son compatibles con la carga inalámbrica; solo pueden cargarse por cable a través de USB-C, pero es un compromiso fácil de hacer cuando la duración de la batería es tan buena.
Henry Burrell / FoundryPrecio y disponibilidad
Los Beats Studio Buds+ cuestan 199,95 € / MXN$3,299 / US$169. Por ahora, solo han salido a la venta en Estados Unidos, mientras que en otros mercados como el Reino Unido tienen programado su lanzamiento para el próximo 13 de junio de 2023. Esta podría ser también la fecha para España.
En Estados Unidos, ya puedes comprarlos directamente desde las páginas web de Apple y Beats, y deberías poder hacer lo mismo una vez salgan a la venta en España y México.
Es un buen precio teniendo en cuenta la calidad de sonido, la ANC y las funciones inteligentes que ofrecen. Lo único que eché de menos de los AirPods Pro de segunda generación, de 299 € / MXN$5,999 / US$249, mientras usaba los Beats, fue el ajuste y la comodidad durante varias horas. Por lo demás, ofrecen prácticamente la misma experiencia, salvo la notable falta de opciones de audio espacial.
Los Studio Buds+ son algo más caros (menos en mercados como Estados Unidos) que los Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro, que cuestan 239,89 € / MXN$2,999 / US$229, y cuestan casi lo mismo que los OnePlus Buds Pro 2, de 179 € / US$179. Prefiero los Beats por su excelente duración de la batería y la interacción con iOS y Android.
Si quieres lo mejor de lo mejor, los Sony WF-1000XM4 cuestan 280 € / MXN$8,569 / US$280, aunque puedes encontrarlos en oferta.
Henry Burrell / FoundryVeredicto
Aunque probablemente no los necesites para pasar de dispositivo iOS a Android, y viceversa, cuando uses auriculares Bluetooth, los Beats Studio Buds+ son compatibles con ambos, lo que significa que puedo recomendárselos a todo el mundo, no solo a los usuarios de iPhone.
El ajuste es excelente a pesar de cansar un poco después de unas horas de uso, y la calidad del sonido está solo por debajo de la calidad superior absoluta que ofrecen los propios AirPods Pro de Apple y los WF-1000XM4 de Sony.
La duración de la batería es realmente excepcional, y la cancelación de ruido es muy buena, haciendo de los Studio Buds+ no solo los mejores auriculares Beats hasta la fecha, sino también uno de los mejores auriculares auténticamente inalámbricos que se pueden comprar.Lista de especificaciones
Emparejamiento rápido de Google
Emparejamiento en un solo paso con iOS
Cancelación activa del ruido
Conectividad inalámbrica: Bluetooth 5.3, SBC, AAC
Control por voz: Siri
Controles por botón
Duración de la batería: Hasta 36 horas
Cuatro tamaños de almohadillas
IPX4 resistente al sudor y a la intemperie
5 g por auricular
Decent Wi-Fi 6 speeds
Four Ethernet ports
Supports mesh networkCons
Blocky and bulky design
Similar performance to last year’s Linksys MR7350Our Verdict
Small, but packed with potential, the Linksys Hydra Pro 6 is a competent Wi-Fi 6 router that’s well priced (in the UK at least), and can be expanded into a mesh Wi-Fi system later. But that approach isn’t necessarily the cheapest way to get mesh Wi-Fi.
It’s an AX5400 device, meaning it ought to give you faster 5GHz Wi-Fi speeds than other Wi-Fi 6 routers for a similar price. Indeed, the Linksys Hydra Pro 6 is essentially an upgrade of last year’s Linksys MR7350 router, which is an AX1800 device.
Like the MR7350, the Hydra Pro 6 is a router that can form part of a mesh Wi-Fi system. It can work as a standalone router, or you can pair it with mesh Wi-Fi satellites from Linksys’s Velop range.
This means if you want whole-home coverage in the future, but your budget can’t currently extend to cover a multi-device mesh Wi-Fi system such as the Linksys Atlas Pro 6 (which ranges from £320-£430 / $349-$449 for 2-pack and 3-pack bundle respectively), then the Linksys Hydra Pro 6 might be the ideal stand-in for the time being.
Alternatively, if your coverage needs are a bit more modest, you’re living in a flat (apartment), or somewhere with thin walls, and you merely want a decent Wi-Fi 6 router for around £200 / $300, then the Hydra Pro 6 should cater for your needs.Design and build
The Linksys Hydra Pro 6 looks a lot like the router from last year it’s effectively replacing, the Linksys MR7350.
It features the same basic blocky design, the same staggered rectangular mesh covering on the top, and vents on the bottom and sides in the same places. The only immediately noticeable difference is that the Linksys ‘L’ logo is stamped onto the external antenna. The antennas can be rotated and tilted 180 and 90 degrees respectively.
Turning the Linksys Hydra Pro 6 around, you’ll see five gigabit Ethernet ports, one WAN (helpfully labeled ‘Internet’) and four LAN (helpfully labeled ‘Ethernet’) .
It’s likely that you’ll be setting this device up in your living room, or somewhere close to your modem (this router doesn’t contain one) and master socket, and it’s therefore also likely that you’ll have games consoles, TV set-top boxes, smart TVs and maybe a soundbar, all of which could benefit from wired Ethernet connections, so four ports should come in handy.
The only other physical connection on here is a Type-A USB 3.0 port, which you can use to connect a hard drive which can then be accessed through the Hydra Pro 6’s admin portal.
Despite being made of fantastic plastic, the Linksys Hydra Pro 6 doesn’t feel cheap: it feels reasonably sturdy.Setup & features
Linksys has done a good job of making the Hydra Pro 6 easy for newcomers to set up from scratch. The Linksys mobile apps (iOS, Android) do a good job of guiding you through the process, covering the basics of router placement – ‘Place out in the open’, ‘Avoid hiding inside of behind furniture’ – to making sure your modem’s turned off before you power the router on and connect it to the modem. Once the connection’s established and you have internet access, the app will ask you whereabouts in the home it’s placed (e.g. living room, kitchen), which basically paves the way for you to add Linksys Velop mesh satellites in the future.
Setting up the Hydra Pro 6 took less than ten minutes, although the longest part was waiting for internet access to be available – so your mileage may vary here, depending on your provider and service.
Once everything’s set up, the Linksys mobile apps also let you dive into the Hydra Pro 6’s settings and check on the devices currently connected.
You can choose to prioritise up to three devices on your network, which is helpful if you’ve got lots of devices all straining for bandwidth at the same time. You can also rename devices as they appear on the dashboard, and apply parental controls, which can restrict certain devices from accessing specific domains, and apply homework hours. You can quickly and easily create Guest Wi-Fi networks for times when you have people over and you don’t want to hand out your regular password.
The Linksys Hydra Pro 6 broadcasts one SSID by default, but if you want to separate the bands and have the router broadcast two names, one for 2.4GHz and one for 5GHz, you can, but you need to open up the desktop control panel for this, as you can’t do it in the mobile app. You can also enabled WPA3 encryption instead of WPA2 (or a mixture of the two) if you have any devices which support the newer encryption standard.Performance
Overall performance of the Linksys Hydra Pro 6 is good. If you’re working in the same room as the router, you’ll be able to enjoy some fast wireless speeds, especially if you’re using a recent phone or laptop that supports Wi-Fi 6. If you’re living and working in a large home, and want coverage in every room, you will want to invest in some Velop satellites, however.
The Hydra Pro 6 is a slightly upgraded version of last year’s Linksys MR7350. While the routers look very similar, the main difference is that Wi-Fi speeds in the higher 5GHz band should be faster (thanks to the Hydra Pro 6 being an AX5400 device), although the top speeds on the 2.4GHz band should be the same.
Interestingly, in my speed tests the results I got were either on par with what I observed with the MR3750, or in some cases, slower. As you’d expect, they were considerably faster than Virgin Media‘s Super Hub 3.
One interesting observation was that the Hydra Pro 6 was better was at connecting to my (old) Huawei Mate 10 Pro, a Wi-Fi 5 device, in more areas around the home, suggesting better coverage than the MR3750.
For example, in the upstairs office (located roughly 15 metres away and one floor up from the router) and in the garden (stood 20 metres away, with two walls and two shut doors between the client and the router), the Mate 10 Pro struggled to connect to the Linksys MR3750. But there were no such problems connecting to the Hydra Pro 6 on the same device in those locations.
I also found that the Hydra Pro 6 automatically shunted the Mate 10 Pro to Channel 11 (a 2.4GHz channel) when performing speed tests upstairs or out in the garden, whereas the other two phones – Realme X50 and Pixel 6 – were kept on Channel 44 (a 5GHz channel). This is an example of the Hydra Pro 6’s band steering in action, choosing the best radio frequencies on a per-device basis.
Rather than use separate SSIDs and force the Hydra Pro 6 to use 2.4GHz or 5GHz, we used the default settings, as most buyers will, and ran speed tests in four locations and allowed the router and phones to decide which frequency to use. Here are the results:
Wi-Fi 5 test (Huawei Mate 10 Pro)Virgin Media Super Hub 3Linksys Hydra Pro 61m693Mbps836Mbps5m with a wall312Mbps437MbpsUpstairs, near the rear of the house21Mbps40MbpsGardenn/a26Mbps
Wi-Fi 6 test (Realme X50)Virgin Media Super Hub 3Linksys Hydra Pro 61m634Mbps870Mbps5m with a wall276Mbps399MbpsUpstairs, near the rear of the house18Mbps38MbpsGarden1Mbps12Mbps
Oddly, the speeds recorded on the Realme X50 (a Wi-Fi 6 phone) were not as good (except at 1m), and while the Google Pixel 6 (see below) recorded faster speeds, they were barely any different to what I recorded on the MR3750 last year.
The only exception was when stood 1m from the router. On occasion, it would move from channel 44 to 100 and use 160MHz to boost speed to 1161Mbps. The 920Mbps figure is the average from all tests. Note that you cannot enable or force the Hydra Pro 6 to use 160MHz all the time.
Wi-Fi 6 test (Pixel 6)Virgin Media Super Hub 3Linksys Hydra Pro 61m674Mbps920Mbps (1161Mbps max)5m with a wall392Mbps695MbpsUpstairs, near the rear of the house28Mbps25MbpsGarden6Mbps44Mbps
Regardless of speeds actually achieved, the Hydra Pro 6’s range is surprisingly good considering it’s a solo device. It was able to deliver 5GHz coverage in areas of my home where I often struggle to get a useable connection on either radio band.
While it’s not really capable of delivering useable whole-home coverage in my two-up, two-down terraces home in South London, it’s not intended to, so it’s not really fair to mark it down for that. And, naturally, in larger homes, you’ll want to consider mesh Wi-Fi to get a fast connection throughout.
If you wanted to use the Hydra’s mesh capabilities, you will need to invest in a separate Linksys Velop node, perhaps something like the Velop MX5300 or Velop MX4200.
It then becomes about whether you value the ability to manage your home network through Linksys’ app which is probably better than your older ISP-supplied router.
The Velop, though, isn’t the only mesh Wi-Fi system. Something like the Amazon Eero 6, or the Netgear Nighthawk Mesh Wi-Fi 6 system might be better suited to your needs, although these devices don’t give you much in the way of Ethernet ports.
There are cheaper options if you don’t need such fast speeds. And, arguably, if you have relatively slow broadband (under 100Mbps, say) then a pricey Wi-Fi 6 mesh system is probably overkill. For recommendations, see our separate roundup of the best mesh Wi-Fi systems.Price & availability
The Linksys Hydra Pro 6 is available to buy now, for around £180 in the UK. Oddly, it’s much more expensive – $300 – in the United States.
Linksys has a web page for the Hydra Pro 6 on its UK site, but you can’t but it from the company directly.
Instead, you can purchase Hydra Pro 6 from Broadband Buyer for £197, eBuyer (out of stock), Ballicom for £194, or Amazon UK for £125. Obviously, Amazon is the obvious place to buy one, then.
You can buy a Hydra Pro 6 directly from Linksys in the US, where it’s normally priced at US$299.99, but was – when we reviewed the router in May 2023 – on sale for $249.99.
Best Buy also sells the Hydra Pro 6 for $299.99, but Amazon is again the place to look, with the router costing under $180 when we checked..
As far as we know, it is not available in Australia.Verdict
The Linksys Hydra Pro 6 offers good performance, has a lot of useful features and represents good value for money.
The option to expand your home network’s coverage using Linksys Velop mesh Wi-Fi units might appeal to some, especially those that can’t afford the upfront cost of such a system right now.
However, there are plenty of affordable mesh systems that can replace your existing router’s Wi-Fi for not much more money than the Hydra Pro 6, and they are a better choice if your priority is huge Wi-Fi coverage but not outright speed.Specs
802.11ax (Wi-Fi 6) 2×4 dual-band
MU-MIMO & OFDMA
4 x gigabit Ethernet LAN ports
Remote control and management with the Linksys app (iOS, Android)
WPA 2/3 hybrid
The Honor 20 Pro goes all out on cameras, and it’s a great choice if you love taking selfies in particular. The fact that it costs so much less than the Huawei P30 and OnePlus 7 Pro makes it even more tempting.
Many of Honor’s phones are priced low, and the Honor 20 Lite which sits at the bottom of the series costs £249.99. That was launched at the end of April, and Honor left around a month before releasing the 20 and 20 Pro, the latter of which we’re reviewing here.
These two phones are incredibly similar, save for the cameras but although we were given early access to the Pro model, Honor kept the prices under wraps until the launch itself.
Note: The Honor 20 and 20 Pro aren’t affected by the restrictions imposed by the US on new Huawei phones because they were already certified by Google. This means there’s no issue with Android security updates or access to Google apps such as Gmail, Google Play and YouTube on these phones.Price & availability
The Honor 20 Pro originally had an RRP of £549/€599 and went on sale in the UK on 1 August 2023. That undercut stiff competition, including from the £649 OnePlus 7 Pro or the £699 Huawei P30. It was, however, a decent chunk more than the regular Honor 20, which had an RRP of £399/€499.
Since launch, these prices have tumbled and – as of May 2023 when Honor opened the virtual doors of its UK-specific online store – the 20 Pro now costs only £399, with the Honor 20 at £299 and the Lite at just £189.99.
From 21-28 May, there’s a sale where you can get the Honor 20 Pro for just £329.99, making it extremely good value.
Of course, you may not want to buy the phone outright. There are contract offers available from Carphone Warehouse, which has the exclusive on the Phantom Blue colour. (It’s not the usual Honor blue – it’s more teal / turquoise).
There’s another phone which is even more similar to the Honor 20 Pro: Honor’s own View 20. This launched back in January 2023 .
The 20 Pro is sold as a 256GB model.Features & design
Similar to View 20
No headphone jack
Side-mounted fingerprint scanner
Punch-hole front camera
Put the 20 Pro next to the View 20 and apart from the smaller screen – 6.26in versus 6.4in – they both look the same with a small ‘pin-hole’ camera in the top-left corner of the screen.
Despite the fact that the 20 Pro isn’t water-resistant, there’s no headphone jack as you’ll find on top of the View 20. Another difference is the fingerprint sensor which has been integrated into the side power button – like several Sony phones – and the camera arrangement is completely different.
It’s now much more like the Huawei P30 and Pro, complete with camera bump. We’ll get to the specifics of the cameras shortly.
The SIM tray is found on the left-hand side and takes two nano SIMs – but not a microSD card. Storage is not expandable. While there are two speakers, only the bottom-firing one is used for music, game and video audio. The top one is just for phone calls and – usefully – has a notification LED hidden behind its grille. That’s something you won’t find on the P30 Pro.
If you like to control your TV and other set-top boxes with your phone, then you’ll appreciate the 20 Pro’s IR blaster, though we couldn’t find any pre-installed app that works with it.
Even at this price, you shouldn’t expect wireless charging, but there’s 22.5W Super Charge which fills up the 4000mAh battery in about an hour.
Design-wise, Honor is making a big deal about the world’s first Dynamic Holographic ‘glassback’. And it does look good, with a real depth thanks to the Triple 3D mesh technology used. But it doesn’t catch the light as well as the ‘V’ design on the rear of the View 20.
The 20 Pro is a fraction thicker than would be desirable and there’s a hollow sound when you tap the back with your nail. Neither of these are a big deal, but they mean the 20 Pro doesn’t quite feel the premium phone that it is.Screen
HDR not supported
This is the one area where the Honor 20 Pro hasn’t gone all out. It’s a completely flat LCD screen, unlike the OLED displays with curved edges on some competitors, notably the OnePlus 7 Pro.
With a 1080p resolution, it’s nothing really special: it’s perfectly adequate for most people. But it’s worth noting that it doesn’t support HDR, and doesn’t have an always-on clock option.
The thin bezels mean there’s a 91.6 percent screen-to-body ratio, meaning that the Honor 20 Pro isn’t as large as you might expect. It’s still a fairly big phone, but it’s not unwieldy.Cameras
48Mp f/1.4 main camera
This is what the Honor 20 Pro is all about, and why Honor uses the tagline ‘Capture Wonder’ for the phone. There are four cameras on the back, a 48Mp main camera with OIS, 16Mp wide-angle and an 8Mp 3x telephoto, again with OIS.
The fourth appears to have been put there just to bump up the numbers, as it’s a 2Mp macro camera which isn’t something many people will want to use very often and feels a bit gimmicky. It does take reasonable photos though.
Returning to the main camera, it uses a Sony IMX586 sensor which is found in a fair few phones now, including the View 20 and OnePlus 7 Pro, whose camera setup is extremely similar to the 20 Pro’s. But Honor has paired it with an f/1.4 lens, which is one of the widest apertures we’ve seen on a phone.
It uses pixel-binning as do most of these very high resolution sensors, so defaults to a 12Mp mode. But if you do want the full 48Mp resolution, not only can you have it, but you also get the AI Ultra Clarity mode found on the View 20.
So it’s no surprise that image quality is basically the same, which is to say it’s excellent. By default, the AI mode is switched off, and you may well prefer it that way. Turn it on and everything gets a saturation boost, plus sharpening so images are Instagram-ready.
We noticed some strange artefacts in some photos, possibly due to the AI or heavy-handed compression, but in most cases, photos are sharp, detailed and have great colours.
It’s likely the 3x zoom is the same as in the Huawei P30 and Mate 20 Pro: we took some side-by-side shots and really couldn’t tell the difference between them. Again, this is great news as it means you can get plenty of detail on those occasions where you can’t get closer to your subject. You also get the 5x hybrid mode which uses detail from the 48Mp sensor to zoom in even further.
It’s a shame HDR is – as with many Huawei phones – not automatic. It’s a separate mode you’ll find under ‘More’, along with Super Macro and the Pro mode.
For those concerned about video quality, the default mode is 1080p30 and there’s good stabilisation. You can use the three main lenses while shooting, and there’s freedom to switch between them at will. 4K is limited to 30fps, and stabilisation isn’t nearly as effective.
One of the other big features is the Super Night mode which works like the long-exposure Night mode on the P30, keeping shots sharp even if you have shaky hands. It’s good, but not amazing on the Honor 20 Pro, and certainly not as good as the OnePlus 7 Pro’s new night mode.
It’s still worth using though, and gives noticeably better results than the standard photo mode. Usefully, Super Night mode can also be used with the ultra-wide lens.
As mentioned, the selfie camera is excellent. And it’s great to have basically the same 32Mp camera you get on the much more expensive Huawei P30 Pro. In bright light detail is wonderful. It’s best not to use the portrait mode which doesn’t do an amazing job of separating wisps of hair from the background, but it’s there if you want it.
Portrait mode works a lot better on the rear camera and we were able to take some great-looking photos with it.Performance & hardware
With the Kirin 980 on board and 8GB of RAM performance was never in question. It’s a fast chip and more than up to the job, as well as competing with the Snapdragon 855. It’s great to see this level of power in phones a lot cheaper than Huawei’s flaghips, and it’s also great for gaming.
Battery life is also excellent, but as ever, how long you get between charges depends on how much you use the phone and how many apps you have running in the background. There are various power-saving modes, but you’ll prefer not to use them in order to ensure you’re not left waiting for emails and notifications to come through.
256GB of storage is generous at this price, but we can’t help but wonder if a cheaper 128GB version would make the 20 Pro a more tempting proposition. The rest of the hardware includes Bluetooth 5, 802.11ac Wi-Fi, NFC and GPS.Software
Magic UI 2.1
Honor calls it Magic UI these days – version 2.1 – but it’s hard to tell the difference between it and Huawei’s EMUI 9. There’s no shortage of reminders that Honor is a subsidiary of Huawei, with many references in the settings – the audio effects are still called Huawei Histen.
One gripe, which might be directed at Android rather then Magic UI, is that no matter whether in standard nav mode or the new full-screen gestures, we were too often thrown out of apps and back to the home screen as our palm came into contact with the bottom-left corner of the screen. That’s one of the problems with having virtually no bezels: you need a palm rejection feature to detect that it’s not a finger tapping a button or swiping.Verdict
The Honor 20 Pro stacks up well against its rivals, and is a great alternative to the OnePlus 7 Pro – especially if you love taking selfies.Related stories for further reading Specs Honor 20 Pro: Specs
Android 9.0 Oreo with Magic UI 2.1
6.26in 2340×1080 touchscreen, 412ppi
Kirin 980 octa-core processor
Quad lens rear camera – 48MP f/1.4 + 16Mp f/2.2 wide + 8Mp f/2.4 telephoto + 2Mp f/2.4 macro
In-screen front camera – 32MP f/2.0
Fingerprint sensor in power button
802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi dual-band
Dual nano-SIM (microSD shared with second SIM)
USB-C (USB 2.0)
4,000mAh non-removable battery
154.6 x 74 x 8.44mm
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