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Finest AirPods 2023

8 min read

When you personal an iPhone and revel in listening to music then a pair of AirPods could make for the proper companion in crime, however which one must you get?

Apple has an esteemed historical past on the planet of music, due to iTunes and the enduring (gone however by no means forgotten) vary of iPods that helped to vary the business into what it’s at this time. Whereas iPods at the moment are a factor of the previous, Apple nonetheless has its hooks within the music business due to its Apple Music streaming service and its ever-growing vary of AirPods.

From the bottom stage AirPods to the AirPods Professionals and now the AirPods Max, there’s a sizeable assortment of Apple branded buds, however this solely makes the dilemma of which pair to get much more complicated. Fortunately for you, we’ve examined the entire Apple AirPods which have come to market so we all know which of them are value selecting up in 2023.

It’s value stating that AirPods solely have restricted performance when paired with an Android telephone, so in the event you’re an Android fan who’s come throughout this web page then we advisable wanting elsewhere at our greatest wi-fi earbuds round-up.

The explanation behind that is that AirPods have been designed to take advantage of out of iOS, with options like hands-free Siri activation, which merely isn’t out there elsewhere because the Siri assistant stays an unique characteristic of Apple’s ecosystem.

Nonetheless, in case you are an iPhone person who’s to know what AirPods options are on the market earlier than you make a remaining resolution, you can too take a look at our round-ups for one of the best headphones and finest wi-fi headphones. To know which AirPods made the reduce as our present favourites, then hold studying on.

Finest AirPods at a look:

How we take a look at

How we take a look at headphones

Not simply anyone can evaluate a pair of headphones. You don’t want superhuman listening to to inform what’s good, however you do have to know what to hear out for.

Our headphone exams are carried out by among the finest and most prolific reviewers within the business, with years of expertise listening to all the things from the plasticky freebie earbuds that include your smartphone, to five-figure beasts of glass and marble. We love music and we wish your tunes to sound good, too.

We hear to each pair of headphones we are able to get on or in our ears. We use a wide range of sources, from primary MP3s enjoying on a laptop computer to high-quality tracks on devoted hi-res audio gamers.

Our take a look at tracks are wide-ranging to offer headphones a radical problem. They’re additionally acquainted, so we all know each observe backwards, and we all know which bits may bother the lesser performers.

We hear time and again, and we try this for weeks in case the sound modifications – as a result of it normally does. Then we’ll hearken to equally priced rivals and give you a verdict that displays the efficiency and options for the cash.

Apple AirPods Professional 2

Finest Apple earbuds


  • Wonderful ANC
  • Wealthy, heat sound
  • Charging case will get some neat options


  • Lots of the finest options are iPhone and Mac solely

Just like the AirPods Professional, the AirPods Professional 2 are at the moment the one headphones on this listing to earn a rating of 4.5/5. Not solely are the Professional 2 the highest-rated Apple earbuds we’ve examined, however they’re additionally the most costly at $249 / £249. 

The AirPods Professional 2 are Apple’s most superior true wi-fi earbuds, shifting past the AirPods 3 when it comes to design, sound and have set and full of inside upgrades over the 2019 AirPods Professional. 

The obvious distinction between the AirPods 3 and the AirPods Professional 2 is the addition of energetic noise cancellation, a characteristic out there on the unique mannequin. The AirPods Professional 2 have had a serious improve in ANC with our reviewer commenting that they cleared away barely extra noise when used on the underground than even the Sony WF-1000XM4 had been in a position to do. Sadly there’s nonetheless no approach to manually regulate the noise cancelling or transparency mode, with each mechanically adapting their efficiency to what’s across the listener.

The 2nd Gen AirPods Professional obtain a lift to battery life with 6 hours within the earbuds and 30 within the case, matching the usual AirPods even with ANC on. The charging case additionally comes with some useful new options, together with a lanyard loop for a wrist strap or to connect the AirPods to your bag, in addition to a speaker for Discover My and charging alerts. 

As with the Professionals, the Professional 2 include silicone ear suggestions as a substitute of the exhausting plastic suggestions discovered on the AirPods 3, providing a safer match. This time there’s additionally an XS dimension tip for smaller ears. 

As with each pair of AirPods we’ve examined, iOS integration is great. Multi-device switching signifies that pairing with one Apple system will permit you to hook up with your different Apple telephones, laptops and tablets.  

The audio high quality is spectacular, too. The Professional 2 have a full and wealthy sound, with the H2 powering a efficiency that reaches past the unique Professional. That is particularly evident within the readability and element discovered within the vocals.

The AirPods Professional 2 aren’t your best option for these not already invested within the Apple ecosystem, as among the finest options depend on this issue. The Professional 2 are additionally costly, although they’re nonetheless cheaper than the AirPods Max.

Reviewer: Max Parker
Full Evaluate: Apple AirPods Professional 2

Apple AirPods 3

Finest AirPods below £200


  • Small, compact design
  • A lot improved sound
  • Unmatched iOS and macOS integration


  • No ANC
  • Poor in loud environments

The AirPods 3 are the third-gen mannequin in Apple’s commonplace AirPods line, and they’re a simple suggestion for iPhone customers and people after a pair of true wi-fi earbuds. 

The AirPods 3 characteristic a redesign with a shorter stem than these on the first and 2nd era fashions, and the dimensions of the housing is larger so it may possibly match extra ears. We took them on a few runs and located the buds stayed put. They’re an honest guess for health exercises with an IPX4 score that protects towards sweat and rain.

The AirPods 3 have an extended battery life than the Professional mannequin at 30 hours whole (6 in every earbud) and just like the Professional they make the most of MagSafe assist, which permits them to magnetically connect to supported chargers for an easier connection. 

Like the opposite AirPods on this listing, there’s wonderful iOS and macOS integration for iPhone and Mac customers. The implementation of Spatial Audio with Dolby Atmos, which helps immersive 3D audio with head monitoring, and we discovered the impact a little bit off-putting when listening to one thing and shifting round rather a lot.

To our ears, the sound high quality is an enchancment over the AirPods 2, however the vocals aren’t as crisply delivered as they’re on the Professionals. There’s additionally no noise cancellation, and with the open design meaning sound will leak and have an effect on what you’re listening to. They’re not the most cost effective AirPods out there because the AirPods 2 are nonetheless on sale at $129 / £119, however the enhancements throughout the board are definitely worth the bounce in worth.

Reviewer: Max Parker
Full Evaluate: Apple AirPods 3 evaluate

AirPods Max

The very best over-ear AirPods


  • Great, versatile sound
  • Many intelligent design components and robust construct high quality
  • Spatial audio could be immersive for the apps that assist it
  • Sturdy connection to the Apple ecosystem


  • Lack of ‘off’ button is annoying
  • The included case is dangerous in nearly each manner
  • Heavy and might’t be folded down
  • The excessive worth can’t be ignored

The AirPods Max are Apple’s first pair of over-ear AirPods and their excessive worth of $549 / £549 immediately makes them dearer than Sony’s WH-1000XM5 and Bose NC Headphones 700, however we nonetheless discovered rather a lot to admire about these headphones. 

The design is one we discovered to be reasonably distinctive, very snug to put on with the Apple Watch-like Digital Crown and buttons constructed into the ear cups as a substitute of gesture controls, a side of the headphones we appreciated for the bodily suggestions they provided. Not like the true wi-fi AirPods, there’s a variety of vibrant selections to choose from, however the headphones can’t be folded attributable to their design and the carry case (which additionally fees the headphones) doesn’t provide a lot safety and appears very foolish.

There’s highly effective adaptive noise cancellation that rivals that provided by the likes of Bose’s NC Headphones 700 and Sony’s older WH-1000XM4, and there’s the standard incredible integration with the Apple ecosystem, together with Spatial Audio Dolby Atmos for extra immersive listening with Apple Music and a few supported apps. Battery is in the direction of the decrease finish of the market at solely 20 hours, so that they lack the longevity of Sony’s headphones.

We discovered the audio high quality to be wonderful, the twin H1 chips and Adaptive EQ producing a balanced sound that impresses throughout a variety of music. There’s loads of bass to depend on, whereas we by no means discovered increased frequencies to sound careworn both, and no distortion when the amount is pumped up. The shortage of any Hello-Res Audio assist is a mark towards it when cheaper Sony and Technics headphones characteristic that stage of assist.

Reviewer: Max Parker
Full Evaluate: Apple AirPods Max evaluate


Which AirPods fashions assist noise cancelling?

The AirPods Professional 2 and the AirPods Max each characteristic energetic noise cancellation, whereas the AirPods 3 don’t.

Can the AirPods be charged wirelessly?

The AirPods 3 and AirPods Professional 2 assist wi-fi charging. The AirPods Max don’t – they want an Apple Lightning cable to cost the headphones.

Do the AirPods come in several colors?

The AirPods 3 and AirPods Professional 2 are solely out there in a shiny white end. The AirPods Max are available in an array of colors that features silver, area gray, sky blue, pink and inexperienced.

We additionally thought-about…

Comparability specs







IP score

Battery Hours

Wi-fi charging

Quick Charging

Dimension (Dimensions)



Launch Date

First Reviewed Date

Audio Decision

Driver (s)

Noise Cancellation?



Frequency Vary

Headphone Sort

Voice Assistant

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