Nothing Launches $149 Ear (2) Wireless Earbuds to Compete With AirPods Pro 2

Nothing today announced the launch of its second-generation wireless earbuds, the Nothing Ear (2), which offer many of the same features as Apple's AirPods Pro 2 at a lower price point. We went hands-on with the Ear (2) earbuds to see whether they're a viable alternative to the ‌AirPods Pro‌ 2 for those who want to save some cash.

The Ear (2) earbuds are the successor to the Nothing Ear (1), and Nothing has used the same general form factor. Nothing's products stand out because of the clear design that lets you see some of the internals, and it's definitely a unique and appealing look. There's a clear body for the stem, with additional components housed in the white plastic top that also has a silicone tip for a comfortable fit in the ear. Compared to the ‌AirPods Pro‌ 2, the Nothing Ear (2) are just about as comfortable, even for longer periods of wear.

Like the ‌AirPods Pro‌ 2, the Ear (2) earbuds feature Active Noise Cancellation. Nothing advertises some bells and whistles like personalization that tailors ANC to the shape of a user's ear, but the ANC on the Ear (2) is about on par with the ‌AirPods Pro‌ 2 ANC. There is a transparency mode that is meant to adjust noise reduction based on environment in real time, like Apple's Adaptive Transparency, but as we've encountered before, no one seems to be able to do Transparency like Apple. The Ear (2)'s transparency options just aren't great.

As for sound quality, Nothing has added Hi-Res Audio certification and LHDC 5.0, which is a low latency audio codec meant to deliver better sound. There's also an 11.6mm driver and a "dual-chamber" design for better sound quality and "smoother airflow," and while the sound is good, it is not quite at the ‌AirPods Pro‌ 2 level.

The Ear (2) earbuds are also lacking many of the features that you get using ‌AirPods Pro‌ 2 with Apple devices, such as instant pairing, automatic device switching, and Spatial Audio, which is something to keep in mind.

Nothing highlights a range of features like Dual Connection for connecting to two devices at the same time, a personal sound profile for customization, and clear voice technology for better call quality. The customization in particular is something that you can't get with the AirPods, so that might appeal to some who want more control over the listening experience.

The Nothing Ear (2) buds feature 36 hours of total playback time with the charging case battery life included and ANC turned off, and they offer IP54 water resistance so they're able to hold up to sweat. There are on-device controls that are activated with a press, and if you have an Android device or a Windows device there are some quick pairing options to take advantage of.

Make sure to watch our video to see the earbuds in action, with a full overview of all of the available features.

The Nothing Ear (2) earbuds are priced at $149, and they are available for purchase from the Nothing website starting today.

Tag: Nothing

Top Rated Comments

LogicalVue Avatar
12 months ago

The customization in particular is something that you can't get with the AirPods
You can most definitely customize the audio with AirPods. Use an app like Mimi to take a hearing test which creates a custom hearing profile (audiogram) and then tell the AirPods (under accessibility) to use it. This is to me the best feature of AirPods and I found it improved things so much that I can hardly use other earbuds now.

You can even "fake" this by choosing to set up a custom audio profile and then when it prompts you to take a picture of your audiogram, you can take a picture of anything. It will fail to be recognized and then let you manually set a bunch of frequency values the way you want (separately for each ear).

Attachment Image
Score: 19 Votes (Like | Disagree)
surfzen21 Avatar
12 months ago
I don't know why but I like the way they look.

Sporty and futuristic. I don't like how it looks on the phones though.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
msackey Avatar
12 months ago
I find the design extremely ugly. It's using a visual language that many new cars use, which is very angular in which various parts rather than giving a visual feel of integration are deliberately designed to show off that the whole has distinctive parts. Very unsightly to me. I hope this kind of visual language dies real soon.

Also, who trusts translucent plastic not to yellow?
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ?️ Avatar
12 months ago
Wow! pretty cool looking. Priced at $149 that's not bad at all. It's Nothing Earphones.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
alexandr Avatar
12 months ago
I got the first edition when they came out, because at that point AirPods Pro didn't have the touch volume control. They are very nice looking and fun, but when you're used to Apple's ecosystem... the process of connecting these is a real bummer, especially if you have other AirPods as well.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
alexandr Avatar
12 months ago

Wow! pretty cool looking. Priced at $149 that's not bad at all. It's Nothing Earphones.
They look exactly the same as the first edition... Which was $99 btw.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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