The Beats Studio Buds are truly wireless headphones with active noise cancelling (ANC). These lightweight in-ears have a comfortable and well-built design. Unlike many other Beats headphones, they also have a more neutral sound profile versatile enough for lots of audio content. However, they lack an H1 or W1 chip, so you can't seamlessly pair them with your Apple devices. Their ANC system also offers a disappointing overall performance, and they only last around five hours on a single charge, although their case holds roughly two additional charges.
The Beats Studio Buds are okay for neutral sound. They have a fairly neutral default sound profile, although their bass range is underemphasized, so your mixes lack warmth, thump, and boom. Vocals and lead instruments are also a bit veiled. Unfortunately, they lack sound customization features to help adjust their sound to your liking.
The Beats Studio Buds are decent for commute and travel. Thanks to their small and lightweight design, you can easily throw them into your pockets or bag when you're on the go. However, their ANC struggles to block out the low rumbles of bus or plane engines. They also provide roughly five hours of continuous playback time, which may not last through long trips without pausing to recharge them up again.
The Beats Studio Buds are great for sports and fitness. They're comfortable, well-built, and are rated IPX4 for water resistance, although we don't currently test for it. They're also lightweight and very portable. However, they don't have stability fins, and they may fall out of your ears with more intense head movements.
The Beats Studio Buds are alright for office use. They have a comfortable and breathable fit for long shifts at your desk. They also don't leak a lot of audio at high volumes, meaning you can crank up your favorite tunes without disturbing coworkers around you. While their ANC offers a disappointing overall performance, it can reduce ambient noise like office chatter around you too. However, their five-hour continuous battery life also may not be enough to get you through your workday.
The Beats Studio Buds aren't suitable for wireless gaming. You can use them with a Bluetooth-enabled PC, but their latency is likely too high for gaming. They aren't compatible with PS4, PS5, or Xbox consoles.
The Beats Studio Buds are truly wireless headphones that can't be used wired.
The Beats Studio Buds are sub-par for phone calls. Their integrated mic has a sub-par recording quality, so your voice sounds a bit distorted, thin, and lacking depth. It also struggles to separate speech from ambient noise, so you may be drowned out if you're talking in a moderately loud environment like a busy street. Their ANC also struggles to block out background noise, so you may have trouble hearing your conversation.
The Beats Studio Buds have a unique, glossy design. The front face of the buds look like small, flat stems, and they have a small logo printed on the lower side. They come in three color variants: 'Black', 'White', and 'Beats Red'.
The Beats Studio Buds have a comfortable fit. They don't put too much pressure on your ears, and registering commands using the physical buttons doesn't hurt either. They come with three pairs of differently-sized tips to help you get the best fit.
These headphones have mediocre controls. There's a physical button on both earbuds, and they're easy to use since the left and right buttons have the same controls. A single press plays or pauses audio while a double press skips your track forward. A triple press skips the track backward. You can also press and hold to switch between ANC, transparency, and normal mode or customize this command in the companion app to trigger voice assistant instead.
The buttons have mechanical feedback, but they're not very clicky. There are also beeps to let you know when you've registered a command, but there aren't voice prompts.
These headphones have a very breathable design. They don't trap in heat around your ears, and you shouldn't really feel a temperature difference, even if you're wearing them while working out.
The Beats Studio Buds are outstandingly portable. They're very small and should easily fit into most pockets or bags without a problem. Their carrying case is also very small, making it easy to take them with you on the go.
The Beats Studio Buds have a decent plastic case. There's one small light near the bottom to indicate that it's charging. However, the lid is a bit flimsy, and it closes very easily.
The Beats Studio Buds have a decent build quality. They're mostly plastic but feel like they could survive a couple of accidental drops without taking too much damage. They're also rated IPX4 for water resistance, although we don't currently test for this. Unfortunately, the ear tips seem like they could rip over time.
These in-ears are decently stable. They come with three differently-sized ear tips to help you get the best fit. However, they lack stability fins, meaning they may fall out of your ears with very high-intensity movements.
The Beats Studio Buds have a neutral sound profile that's suitable enough for lots of audio content. Unlike most other Beats headphones, they lack a bit of bass, so mixes lack thump, rumble, and boom. Vocals and lead instruments are also a bit veiled. Unfortunately, their companion app doesn't offer any sound customization features to help you adjust their sound to your liking.
The Beats Studio Buds' frequency response consistency is outstanding. Once you achieve a proper fit and air-tight seal using the assortment of tips that come with the headphones, you should achieve consistent audio delivery each time you use them.
The bass accuracy is decent. It's relatively flat, although completely underemphasized across the range. Mixes lack warmth as well as thump, rumble, and boom.
The Beats Studio Buds have good mid accuracy. The low to mid-mid is underemphasized, which thins out vocals and lead instruments and nudges them to the back of your mixes. The high-mid is very flat though, so vocals sound clear.
The Beats Studio Buds' treble accuracy is decent. It's underemphasized across the range, so vocals and lead instruments are veiled and lacking in detail. Sibilants like S and T sounds are also dulled.
The peaks and dips performance is great. A bump in the low-bass adds thump and rumble to mixes while a dip between the high-bass and low-mid thins out vocals and lead instruments. Another dip in the mid-mid nudges these sounds to the back of your mix, while a bump in the high-mid to low-treble makes the upper harmonics of vocals and lead instruments harsh. The uneven mid-treble makes sibilants like cymbals alternatingly dull and sharp.
The Beats Studio Buds have outstanding imaging. The group delay has a very small peak above the audibility threshold in the low-bass, but it shouldn't be audible. The response otherwise falls below the threshold, ensuring tight bass and transparent treble reproduction. The L/R drivers of our unit are also well-matched in phase, amplitude, and frequency response. This is important for the placement and localization of objects like footsteps in the stereo image. However, these results are only valid for our unit, and yours may perform differently.
The Beats Studio Buds' passive soundstage is bad. To achieve a large and spacious soundstage, the outer ear has to activate with sound resonances. However, in-ear headphones completely bypass the outer ear. As a result, they produce a soundstage that seems small and as if coming from the inside of your head, rather than from speakers placed around you. Since they also have a closed-back design, their passive soundstage seems less spacious than open-back headphones.
These headphones don't have any virtual soundstage features. While they support Apple's spatial audio by default, it only works on tracks mixed in Dolby Atmos.
The weighted harmonic distortion performance is good. There are a couple of peaks in the treble range, but it's very difficult to hear this with real-life content. The rest of the frequencies fall within good limits, which results in clear and pure audio reproduction.
These are the settings used to test the Beats Studio Buds. Our results are only valid when using the headphones with these settings.
The Beats Studio Buds have sub-par noise isolation. Although these headphones have active noise cancelling (ANC), it can be difficult to hear the difference between ANC on and off. They barely block out bass-range noise like the low rumble of bus or plane engines. They do a better job of reducing office chatter, and they can reduce the high-pitched hum of an AC unit. However, turning the ANC off results in a better performance in the treble range.
Note: We noticed that when the ANC is on, you can sometimes hear more white noise when you're in a quiet environment. If you have experienced this issue, please let us know in the discussion section below.
The Beats Studio Buds' leakage performance is outstanding. Their leakage is fairly low and is mostly concentrated in the bass range, so it sounds somewhat full. However, it falls below the noise floor of an average office, so even if you're listening to your favorite music at high volumes, others around you shouldn't be able to hear it.
The Beats Studio Buds' recording quality is sub-par. Your voice sounds natural, although thin, a bit distorted, and lacking in depth.
The mic's noise handling performance is sub-par. The mic struggles to separate your voice from moderate ambient noise around you. If you're taking an important call, it's best to do so from a quieter environment so that your voice isn't drowned out.
The Beats Studio Buds' battery performance is sub-par. They're advertised to last five hours with their ANC on, and we measured a similar amount. However, battery life can vary depending on usage, so your real-life experience may vary. Luckily, their carrying case holds roughly two additional charges if you need it. You can also use one bud while the other one charges. Although we don't currently test for it, they're advertised to have a five-minute 'Fast Fuel' quick charge, which is supposed to give you up to one hour of playback time.
The Beats app is sub-par. It doesn't offer any sound customization features like an EQ or presets. You can map the press and hold controls to trigger either ANC, transparency, and normal mode or voice assistant. You can also switch between the ANC modes or rename your earbuds. Using the Android app, you can register your buds for updates, but this feature isn't available on iOS.
The Beats Studio Buds have decent Bluetooth connectivity. Unlike other Beats headphones, these in-ears don't have an H1 or W1 chip, so you can't seamlessly pair them with your Apple devices. They also don't support multi-device or NFC pairing. While their latency on PC is high, their iOS and Android latency is much lower, which is nice if you like to stream video. That said, some devices compensate for latency differently, so your real-life experience may vary.
The Beats Studio Buds can't be used wired. They come with a USB-C to USB-C charging cable.
These headphones are only compatible with Bluetooth-enabled PCs.
The Beats Studio Buds come in three color variants: 'Black', 'White', and 'Beats Red'. We tested the 'Black' variant, and you can see our model's label here. If you come across another variant, please let us know in the discussions, and we'll update our review.
The Beats Studio Buds are sleek true wireless headphones. While most Beats headphones tend to be a bit more bass-heavy, these in-ears have a more neutral sound profile, making them very suitable for many audio genres. Unfortunately, their ANC doesn't perform as well as that of the Beats Solo Pro Wireless. They also lack an H1 or a W1 chip, so you can't seamlessly pair them with other devices in your Apple ecosystem.
See our recommendations for the best wireless Bluetooth earbuds, the best wireless earbuds for running and working out, and the best noise cancelling earbuds and in-ear headphones.
The Apple AirPods Pro Truly Wireless are better in-ears than the Beats Studio Buds True Wireless. The Apple are better-built, have a more stable in-ear fit, and have a more neutral sound profile, which some users may prefer. Their ANC also does a significantly better job of blocking out ambient noise around you, and they offer a better battery performance. They have an H1 chip, so you can seamlessly pair them with other devices in your Apple ecosystem.
The Beats Solo Pro Wireless are better headphones than the Beats Studio Buds True Wireless. The Solo Pro are better-built, have a more neutral sound profile, which some users may prefer, and their ANC does a significantly better job of blocking out ambient noise around you. They also have longer continuous battery life, and they have an H1 chip, so you can seamlessly pair them with your Apple devices. However, the Studio Buds are more comfortable and lightweight.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds+ Truly Wireless are better in-ears than the Beats Studio Buds True Wireless. While both headphones are comfortable, the Samsung have a more neutral sound profile, which some users may prefer, and they're able to passively isolate you from more noise than the Beats with their ANC on. Their integrated mic also offers better overall performance, they have a longer continuous battery life, and you can customize their sound when using their companion app's EQ presets.
The Beats Powerbeats Pro Truly Wireless and the Beats Studio Buds True Wireless have different strengths, and you may prefer one over the other. While both headphones are comfortable, the Powerbeats are better for sports as they have a very stable in-ear fit, a longer continuous battery life, and an H1 chip so that you can seamlessly pair them up with other devices in your Apple ecosystem. However, the Studio Buds are a bit better for commutes or office use. They have ANC, and while it offers a disappointing performance, it can still block out more background noise than the Powerbeats, and they also leak less audio.