Before reading this review, bear in mind that I have primarily used this with my Samsung Galaxy S9, so depending on your device, your experience may vary.
So, it’s been a few months: what are my thoughts on the Galaxy Buds? I’ve enjoyed them. After seeing quite a lot of negative reviews, I was nervous that they wouldn’t be as good as some of the other reviews had made them out to be.
The design is perfect, but I did put on a case to stop the case from scratching. It’s a shame, but you have to protect them or they will get scratched up from your keys or anything else flying around in your bag. I got the black model, and I think the matte black finish looks really good. The case closes with an audible snap, which is quite satisfying. My only gripe with the design is that the Buds aren’t held magnetically in the case, so when opening they sometimes fall out.
The sound quality is really good, but since I’ve never had an expensive pair of headphones my opinion may be a bit skewed there. The bass is quite strong, and you can customise the balance of bass and treble and vocals and instrumentals in the app, so if you enjoy bass like me, then you’re in luck. I don’t have to crank the volume up too high too, since they fit relatively snug in my ear, cancelling quite a lot of noise despite not claiming to be noise-cancelling.
The battery life is perfect for me. I’ve taken it on many long-haul flights and trips and under reasonable use they’ve never run out. Not only this, I’ve found it very useful to have wireless charging: as soon as I get home I can drop the case on my wireless charger and I’m good. If you’re away from power for days at a time and you find yourself listening to music 24/7, then they might not be perfect for you, but then again this would be the case with any wireless headphones.
The light on the front shows the battery level of the case, and the light on the inside of the case shows the battery status of the Buds themselves. If you want to know what the colours mean, you can find a quick summary from Samsung’s user manual here.
You are presented with the battery percentage of each earbud when you connect with them, which is very useful, however, it does not display the battery percentage of the case, which is slightly irritating, but certainly not a deal-breaker. This can be fixed by simply looking at the indicator on the front of the case, but could also be introduced in a later model.
The touchpads work well: you can customise the hold functionality of each Bud, and I chose to set my left Bud as the Google Assistant toggle and my right Bud to toggle Ambient mode, which lets me hear my surroundings whilst listening to music, which is very useful.
Connecting to the Galaxy Buds is very easy. After they have been set up, open the case and they are ready to go. As I said, you are presented with a small popup letting you know you’re connected and the battery percentage of each earbud.
I have run into a few issues when dealing with connectivity, however, these have always been fixed with a software update pushed through the Galaxy Wearables app. For example, for about a day I was experiencing unreliable audio- it cut out regularly- until I received an update, and the problem was solved.
What if I can’t find one, you may be asking? Well, there is a built-in Find My Buds feature which I had to use once when I dropped my left Bud on a bus. It plays a loud chirping noise and that helps you find them- mine showed up in the seat mechanism, luckily it survived. It won’t help if you’ve left them halfway across the globe, but for dropping them down the side of the sofa it’s very useful.
Overall, I’ve had a great experience, with just a few issues. Here is a quick summary of the pros and cons:
- Sound good, adequate bass
- Great battery life
- Stylish, multiple colours to choose from
- Customisable ear tips, fit well
- Cancel some noise
- Protrude slightly from ears, uncomfortable to sleep with
- Some issues with connectivity (fixed with updates)
- Touchpads sometimes finicky
I bought the Black model on Amazon, which you can find as an affiliate link here.