[Review] Samsung Galaxy Buds Live Sound Quality & Comfort Fit
When the Samsung Galaxy Buds Live were first revealed, my immediate reaction was, “What? How will they adapt and stay in your ears? “
I just couldn’t figure it out, until I got them in my hands (and put them in my own ears).
Inside their square and compact casing, they sit like two detached kidneys, or for a more appealing image, they look like very shiny jelly candies.
The last and only pair of Samsung wireless headphones I reviewed was the Samsung Galaxy Buds +, and as hard as I tried to find something I hated about them, I couldn’t.
During this review, I was surprised because Samsung never seemed to me to be a serious competitor in the wireless headphone business.
After all, its first products were televisions and today some of its best known products are its phones.
On the flip side, brands like Jabra and Sudio have focused on audio gear from the start, and we’ve looked at Jabra’s Elite 75t here and several Sudio wireless headphone models here.
With my Samsung Galaxy Buds + experience, it would be unfair to say that I had low expectations for Buds Live.
Looks: She is extra curvy
Samsung has a knack for making compact cases that are easy to open with one hand, with the Buds Live being the simplest to date I believe.
The shape also allowed for a better one-handed grip, as opposed to the pill shape of the Buds + case.
Now, removing the actual headphones was where it got a little tricky. Most headphones have some sort of sharp edge that you can get a firmer grip on (for the Buds + it was the winged ends).
On the Buds Live, however, everything is smooth. No hard edges, just curves.
With their glossy and polished coatings it’s easy to lose your grip on them too, so I was very careful every time I took them off.
They fit better than expected, especially since they were also bigger than I expected (just looking at pictures). Fortunately, once they’re in, they don’t come out weirdly.
But setting them up was not as easy as I would have liked.
I had to do quite a bit of pushing until they were at a point where, 1) they fit tightly into my ears, and 2) the sound sounded clear and not far away.
Once I had them securely in place, I could jump and shake my head from side to side without them falling.
Instead of silicone tips wrapping around the speakers, they face directly into your ear canals.
Without the silicone tips, even after pushing them as far as they could go, I still felt the fit wasn’t as “sealed” as the silicone earbuds. But eventually, I got used to it.
Audio: equal, with minor improvements
You’d think the speaker design would mean the sound quality would be better, but honestly I didn’t find much of a difference between the Buds + and the Buds Live.
My audio issues with the Buds Live were similar to those I had with the Buds +, except for an improvement in the quality of the treble.
I mostly used them to listen to music, and listening to a few different genres like pop and rock, they played wonderfully for the first one, and less for the second.
When it came to something with more bass, I felt like the music just blended into something more monotonous, which was slightly disappointing.
Overall, for some genres, I felt like I was listening to my music through thick blanket, but that didn’t detract too much from my enjoyment.
I know it sounds bad, but it’s an improvement for me as I felt that way about Buds + in general (regardless of music genre), so at least Buds Live is doing better.
The is one way to make things even better, and that’s through the Samsung Galaxy Buds app.
In this one, I was able to adjust the EQ according to the preset modes, and setting it to Bass Boost helped my aforementioned problem slightly.
Other characteristics: it is a success or a miss
Samsung states that these have active noise cancellation. I will say that I find this claim rather oversold.
You will still be able to hear most of what is going on around you, and a little less if you listen to music.
Turning the feature on and off also doesn’t make much of a difference except to mute the low hum / hum background noises.
When it came to calls, I could hear the other person clearly, but I was told I had a soft, muffled sound, which is weird as Samsung mentioned having a “voice pickup unit.” »For better speech detection.
I’m still not a fan of touch controls (the buttons are superior, fight me), but Samsung makes them more bearable in both Buds + and Buds Live.
They deliver useful beeps that let you know when you’ve tapped them once (to pause or play) or when you press and hold (to increase or decrease the volume on either earbud).
To change what your gestures control, you’ll need to open the app.
Have my expectations been met?
Yes, and more, Buds Live has passed them. Once again, Samsung has managed to surprise me with its wireless headphones.
Buds Live always connect to my phone quickly, but it should be noted that they can only connect to one device at a time.
Thanks to their shape, this is a pretty fun pair of headphones to wear and sure to pique the intrigue of anyone I’ve shown them.
There are still minor improvements to be made, but I would still consider them a catch priced at RM 699 for the quality offered.
Since they’re only RM100 more than the Buds + (RM599), they might not be worth upgrading if you’re already using the latter.
However, if you are just looking to try out Samsung wireless headphones, both are great choices at their price points. It will just depend on which one interests you the most.
|The shape of the headphones is unique, eye-catching and fun||Unique design may not be suitable for very small ears|
|Clearer audio quality in terms of treble||Bass-rich music always sounds muffled|
|Despite the shape, they fit snugly enough for active movement||The “waterproof” feel of wireless earphones with silicone tips is absent, so active noise cancellation is not as effective|
- You can read more about the Samsung Galaxy Buds Live here.
- You can read more about our VP Verdict series here.
VP Verdict is a series in which we personally try and test products, services, modes and applications. Want to suggest something else to try? Leave a comment here or send the suggestion to our Facebook page.
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