Apple AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) vs AirPods (3rd Gen) vs AirPods (2nd Gen): Which are best for you?

Apple’s lineup of AirPods offers a range of options to suit different users’ needs. With the AirPods Pro (2nd Gen), AirPods (3rd Gen), and AirPods 2, it’s essential to understand their differences to make an informed decision. In this article, we will explore the features and capabilities of each model to help you determine which one is the best fit for you.

AirPods Pro @ Amazon

AirPods 3rd Gen @ Amazon

AirPods 2nd Gen @ Amazon

  • Design and Fit:

The AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) and AirPods (3rd Gen) boast a modern design with shorter stems and IPX4 water and sweat resistance. The AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) offer a customizable fit with silicone ear tips and a vent system for pressure equalization. On the other hand, the AirPods 2 retain the original design, which may appeal to those who prefer a more familiar look.

For users seeking a secure fit during workouts or outdoor activities, the AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) and AirPods (3rd Gen) are the top choices. If design isn’t a priority and you value a more budget-friendly option, the AirPods 2 could be suitable.

  • Controls and Accessibility:

When it comes to controls, the AirPods (3rd Gen) and AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) offer more advanced on-device controls compared to the AirPods 2. With tap and force sensors, these models provide convenient access to play/pause, skip tracks, adjust volume, and activate Siri. The AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) go a step further with active noise cancellation and transparency mode, allowing you to tailor your audio experience.

If you prefer hands-free control and accessibility, all three models support Siri voice commands. However, only the AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) and AirPods (3rd Gen) offer “Hey Siri” functionality, enabling you to make calls, change the volume, and more without reaching for your device.

  • Sound Quality:

For an immersive sound experience, both the AirPods (3rd Gen) and AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) excel. They feature Adaptive EQ, which automatically adjusts low and mid-frequencies to match your ear’s shape. Additionally, these models include custom high dynamic range amplifiers and optimized audio drivers, resulting in excellent audio quality and reduced background noise.

The AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) stand out with their active noise cancellation, thanks to two microphones and advanced software. This feature is ideal for frequent travelers or those who want to immerse themselves in their music without distractions. However, if noise cancellation is not a priority, the AirPods (3rd Gen) still offer a superior sound experience compared to the AirPods 2.

  • Processor and Connectivity:

The AirPods (3rd Gen) and AirPods 2 utilize the H1 chip, which ensures faster and more stable connections between devices. The AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) take it a step further with the H2 chip, offering enhanced noise cancellation and longer battery life compared to the original AirPods Pro.

If you value seamless connectivity and improved performance, both the AirPods (3rd Gen) and AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) provide an edge over the AirPods 2.

  • Battery Life and Charging:

In terms of battery life, the AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) offer the longest duration, with up to 4.5 hours of talk time and 6 hours of listening time. The AirPods (3rd Gen) provide similar talk time, while the AirPods 2 offer 3 hours of talk time. All models come with a charging case, with the AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) and AirPods (3rd Gen) including a wireless charging case.

If extended battery life is crucial, the AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) will be your best bet. However, if you don’t mind slightly shorter durations and prefer the convenience of wireless charging, the AirPods (3rd Gen) are a worthy option.


Choosing the right AirPods model depends on your specific preferences and priorities. Here’s a summary of the recommendations:

  • AirPods Pro (2nd Gen): If you prioritize active noise cancellation, a customizable fit, advanced controls, and the best sound quality, these are the top-of-the-line option. They are ideal for frequent travelers or audiophiles who crave an immersive audio experience.
  • AirPods (3rd Gen): For users seeking a balance between features and price, the AirPods (3rd Gen) offer an improved design, sweat and water resistance, personalized spatial audio support, and excellent sound quality. They are a great choice for everyday use and provide a significant upgrade over the AirPods 2.
  • AirPods 2: If you’re on a budget and don’t require the latest features, the AirPods 2 still offer good sound quality, convenient Siri integration, and reliable connectivity. They are a cost-effective option for users who prioritize affordability and simplicity.

Consider your specific needs, such as fitness activities, sound preferences, and budget, to make an informed decision. Regardless of your choice, Apple’s AirPods lineup delivers a seamless wireless audio experience that has become synonymous with the brand’s ecosystem

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