Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 review

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Scarlette Lennon1 August 2022Last Update : 2 weeks ago
Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 review

Huawei’s latest flagship TWS earphones – the Freebuds Pro 2 – come as a natural evolution of the first Freebuds Pro. They were developed together with Devialet and after spending a lot of time testing them, we are now ready to share what we hope will be some useful impressions.

We had the Silver Blue kit which is absolutely the belle of the ball – there are also black and white options for more traditional looks. Choosing a bold color for an accessory usually means that it will be an accent in one’s outfit, and in this case, the Freebuds Pro 2 in blue is definitely a head-turner.

The case has a matte coating and mirror-like finish on the hinge, where we can also see the Devialet logo. The earphones themselves are glossy and are massive fingerprint magnets, which quickly detract from their appearance. Huawei introduced a rectangular design of the stem in the first Freebuds, but now the edges are better rounded and the whole earphone looks seamless and overall much better.

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 review

The case supports wireless charging, but unusually the coil is located at the front. When you place the case on the wireless charger, you have the Devialet logo facing up, but obviously you can’t easily operate the lid. The other items of interest are a USB-C port on the bottom and a reset key on the right side.

The retail box has a USB-A cable and two extra size rubber tips for the buds. Freebuds Pro 2 supports all phones, but you only get the AI ​​Life companion app on Android from Huawei’s AppGallery.

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 review

The earphones themselves are quite capable, but it’s Huawei’s app that makes the difference. It can be used to switch between noise control modes, set different sound effects and edit motions. There is also a “Tip fit test” which helps you choose the right set of rubber tips from those included in the box.

Our experience showed that it is a bit redundant because we had already chosen the ones that felt comfortable and the app just confirmed that our choice is correct. Comfort is essential for TWS earphones, but unfortunately it’s a strictly personal matter, as everyone’s ears are slightly different. For what it’s worth, this reviewer felt no discomfort wearing these buds in his ear for the past few weeks.

There were also occasional runs on the local running track and trails in the mountains just outside the city – the Freebuds stayed in their ear so they forgot they were even there.

The Freebuds Pro 2 design of the stems isn’t their most unusual feature, it’s their touch navigation. Huawei decided to prevent accidental touches on the outside, and now you have to pinch with two fingers.

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 in Huawei AI Life
Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 in Huawei AI Life
Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 in Huawei AI Life
Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 in Huawei AI Life

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 in Huawei AI Life

The essence of the gestures has remained the same – one pinch is Play/Pause, two pinches is Next Song, three pinches is Previous Song; Pinch and hold is noise control; Swipe is on the side and controls the volume. All are customizable and can even be turned off.

What we found awkward is the attempt to pinch two or three times. It is not a classic pinch, which must be at least 1 sec (1000 ms) per gesture and often it didn’t register correctly so I can say it didn’t feel good when listening to a podcast. Yes, pinch and hold works well, but it’s the only gesture I could reliably use. And it’s not like I didn’t give them time to get used to – I struggled with this for the last five weeks.

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 review

Sound performance is the most important feature of TWS earphones, and the FreeBuds Pro 2 really impresses here.

This comes as no surprise – the previous Freebuds Pro were among the best earphones of this form factor we’ve ever tested, and of course Huawei’s partnership with Devialet also helped set this right.

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 review

The selected drivers and software tuning achieve a class-leading audio experience. First of all, there is a Dual Sound system consisting of a quad-magnet 11 mm dynamic driver and a separate UHF planar diaphragm driver.

Usually these elements are in one module, but Huawei managed to split them and claim that it really cleans the output.

In practice, they deliver the deepest bass we’ve ever heard from such tiny buds, as well as clean vocals. Here’s where AI Life comes in handy – the app offers four key sound effects, which are basically a fancy equalizer, and we loved the bass boost preset.

You can also create your custom equalizer and turn on a few more software features, including Smart HD and HD Voice, which aim to improve the output further, but of course they only do well with certain tracks and hurt battery life.

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 review

Speaking of voice calls, each bud has three microphones – two outwards, aimed at the mouth, and a third that sits on the inside and takes care of external sounds to offer noise cancellation.

Freebuds Pro 2 offers three primary noise control options – Awareness that boosts ambient noise and has a switch to enhance voices. It does a good job and sometimes it can even get overwhelming in a supermarket with all the people around and registering beeps.

The second option is Off and is the default.

The third option is Noise Cancelling. It has four strength levels and it does a solid job at the higher levels.

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 cover
Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 cover

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 cover

The Freebuds Pro 2 cover has a 580 mAh battery and each bud has a 55 mAh battery. Huawei’s claimed endurance and our results in the various noise-cancelling modes are listed in the chart below.

Fashion on a single charge Huawei Labs Playtime Game time in real life
Noise reducing 4 hours 220 minutes/
3 hours 40 minutes
Of 6.5 hours 360 minutes/
6 hours
Attention
(not recommended for long-term use)
REACH 200 minutes/
3h 20 min

Huawei promised 40 minutes to charge the earphones from 0 to 100% in the case. We charged the buds at least 20 times and the average is only 45 minutes – pretty decent.

The company also claimed that the Freebuds Pro 2 case charges in 60 minutes, assuming the buds are not inside. Our real-world charge times were consistently in the 70 to 75 minute window.

Wireless charging takes twice as long – up to 2.5 hours from 0 to 100%, so if you’re in a hurry, plug in a cable.

Huawei Freebuds Pro 2 review

Huawei did an impressive job with the Freebuds Pro 2 – unbeatable sound, slim design and solid battery life combined with excellent noise cancellation.

At €199, they’re certainly not cheap, but they still feel like a good deal. Even more so when you factor in the freebies Huawei offers in most of its online stores – like a free Watch Band 7 or a discounted Scale 3. This is clearly a device worth buying and we can only recommend it so much, before we run out of superlatives.

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