The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE Truly Wireless are budget-friendly noise cancelling (ANC) earbuds. They're more affordable than the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Truly Wireless but have fewer features than other models in the lineup, so you won't find head tracking features or multi-device pairing. Still, you can expect Samsung's hallmarks, like a neutral sound profile, solid noise cancelling (though nothing that blows their competitors out of the water), and Samsung-specific features like Seamless codec support for streaming higher-quality audio.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE are good for neutral sound. Out of the box, they have a pretty neutral sound profile. They have a touch of extra bass to add thump and rumble to audio, but vocals and instruments still sound clear, natural, and accurate. There's a small amount of treble roll-off, which hurts the detail in vocals and instruments as well as dulls sibilants like cymbals. On the upside, you can use their companion app's EQ presets for more control over their sound.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE are great for commute and travel. These comfortable buds have noise cancelling and are well-suited for cutting down passenger chatter and the high-pitched hums of fans. That said, they do a passable job in reducing rumbly bus and plane engines. With their ANC on, they last over six hours continuously, so if you need to top them up, their carrying case holds an extra 3.5 charges. They're also well-built and lightweight, making them easy to take with you on the go.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE are great for sports and fitness. Unlike other buds from Samsung, they have stability fins, which helps keep them comfortable and in place during workouts. While they're also well-built, they're only rated IPX2 for resistance against light rain.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE are good for office use. They're comfortable, lightweight, and even equipped with ANC, so you can easily block out chatty co-workers. Their over six-hour continuous battery life may not be enough to get you through your day, but their carrying case supplies roughly 3.5 additional charges. Unfortunately, they don't support multi-device pairing.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE are Bluetooth-only headphones. They have high latency via SBC, which can cause delays between your audio and visuals. On the upside, if you're a mobile gamer on a Samsung device, you can benefit from their 'Gaming Mode', which helps lower latency on these devices. It won't work on other devices, though.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE are truly wireless earbuds; you can't use them wired.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE are good for phone calls. Their mic does a good job of recording your voice so that you sound clear and intelligible. The mic can also separate speech from background noise, so busy office sounds won't drown out your voice. Additionally, the buds are equipped with ANC and can block out a very good amount of ambient sound around you.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE come in two color variants: 'Graphite' and 'White'. We tested the 'White' model; you can see their label here. If you encounter another variant of these buds, please let us know in the forums below.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE are budget-friendly buds. They're on the lowest end of Samsung's price scale, and while they don't support features like 360 Audio for a more immersive sound, there are a couple of improvements over other buds in their lineup. They have a more comfortable fit than the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Truly Wireless, thanks to their removable stability fins, which are handy if you want to use them at the gym during tough workouts. They also have a longer continuous battery life than other models in this lineup. That said, even though their ANC offers a very good overall performance, the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro True Wireless still deliver a better overall performance in this regard.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro True Wireless have a few more extra features than the Samsung Galaxy Buds FE Truly Wireless. The Pro model have a higher IP rating for water resistance, a significantly better noise isolation performance, and have a head tracking feature, making for a more immersive audio experience. That said, the FE model are more comfortable, thanks to their stability fins, and have a better overall microphone performance. Their battery life is better, too.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Truly Wireless have a couple of extra features over the Samsung Galaxy Buds FE Truly Wireless. While both buds look somewhat similar, the Buds2 support 360 Audio, which is a head-tracking feature that can make for a more immersive audio experience. They also have a somewhat better noise isolation performance. However, the FE model offer better overall performance, as they're more comfortable, thanks to their stability fin design, and have a longer continuous battery life. Their microphone also offers a superior performance.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE Truly Wireless offer a better overall performance than the Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro Truly Wireless. The FE model are more comfortable, have a more neutral sound profile, which some users may prefer, and their ANC can block out more ambient noise. They also have a longer continuous battery life and support Samsung's Seamless codec, which allows you to stream audio in higher quality.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE Truly Wireless are slightly better than the EarFun Air Pro 3 True Wireless. While both buds have a similarly good noise isolation performance, the Samsung are more comfortable, have a more neutral sound profile, which some users may prefer, and their mic's overall performance is better, too. That said, the EarFun have a better battery performance, their companion app offers a graphic EQ for more fine-tuned control over your sound, and they support multi-device pairing.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE look closer to buds produced by Jabra like the Jabra Elite 10 True Wireless than to the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro True Wireless. Instead of a rounded bud shape, they have a flat surface that doubles as their controls. They come in a couple of different colors: 'Graphite' and 'White'.
These buds have a pretty comfortable fit. They rest nicely on the outer edge of your ear canal, so they don't need to be forced further into your ear. The buds themselves are a little bit smaller than the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro True Wireless, but they also have wingtips, which help keep them in place and feel very comfortable compared to their otherwise hard plastic edge. That said, their bud shape may not be the most comfortable for all users, depending on the shape of your ear.
These buds have very simple controls. There's a touch-sensitive surface on each bud, which is a little too responsive since you can easily register a command by accident. There are no volume controls by default either, which is a little disappointing. You can enable this feature by changing the 'Hold' option in the companion app. You'll lose out on other controls, though. There are chimes to let you know when you've reached min/max volume and when you play or pause audio or cycle between different ANC modes.
On either bud:
Like most truly wireless earbuds, these buds are pretty portable. They're small, lightweight, and easily fit into your pockets or bags.
Their carrying case is good and is nearly the same as that of the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Truly Wireless. The case is lightweight and has a glossy shell with a matte interior. There are LED lights to indicate the case's charging status as well as the buds' battery status. The hinge feels sturdy, too. Unfortunately, unlike the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro True Wireless, the carrying case doesn't support wireless charging.
The build quality of these buds is good. They're mostly made of plastic with silicone ear tips and stability fins, so they feel sturdy. The buds are also certified IPX2 for resistance against light rain, though this is less than the IPX7 of the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro True Wireless, which have protection against water submersion. Unfortunately, the silicone ear tips can rip if mishandled.
These buds have good stability. They'll stay in place with moderate head movements thanks to their stability fins. If you're wearing them during tough workouts, they can loosen up a bit, but they won't fall out of your ear.
These buds have a pretty neutral sound profile. They deliver a touch of extra thump and rumble in the bass range. Vocals and instruments sound clear and present, but a bit of treble roll-off weakens their detail. They have a few EQ presets available in their companion app if you prefer a different sound.
The frequency response consistency is great. You'll get a consistent sound once you get a good fit using the included ear tips and stability fins.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE have outstanding bass accuracy. They have a small bump in low-bass, which adds thump and rumble to mixes. The rest of the range is incredibly flat and neutral, so tracks have adequate warmth and punch.
These headphones have outstanding mid accuracy. The response is pretty flat and neutral, so in songs like Mitski's My Love, Mine All Mine, her vocals, as well as the soft instruments surrounding her voice, are present, natural, and clear throughout the track.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE have great treble accuracy. There's treble roll-off starting in the low-treble, which veils the details of vocals and instruments. Sibilants like cymbals are a bit dull, too.
The peaks and dips performance of these buds is excellent. For the most part, the response is pretty flat and neutral, which means that the headphones can control their sound profile quite well. There's a dip in the mid-mid, which affects the right driver, which nudges vocals and instruments to the back of the mix. A bump in the high-mid affects both drivers and harshens vocals and instruments. Another peak in the mid-treble makes sibilants like cymbals piercing.
The imaging performance is excellent. In the last few years, we've tested a few Samsung headphones with well-matched drivers (and solid imaging performance), indicating the manufacturer's quality control and ergonomics. Imaging varies across units, though. Our unit's L/R drivers are well-matched in group delay, which ensures tight bass and transparent treble. They're also well-matched in amplitude and frequency response, resulting in an even and balanced soundstage. That said, there are a couple of peaks in the phase response's mid-range, which causes shifts in the stereo image. It affects the staging of lower-range vocalists, but it's hard to spot.
The passive soundstage performance is bad, but that's common in in-ear headphones. They bypass your outer ear, which needs to be activated by sound resonances to create a more immersive and spacious soundstage. As a result, the soundstage feels closed-off and as if sound is coming from inside your head rather than from speakers placed in the room around you.
Unlike the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Truly Wireless, these headphones don't support 360 Audio for a more spacious and immersive sound.
The weighted harmonic distortion performance is great. Distortion falls within good levels, which results in clean and pure audio reproduction.
These are the settings used to test these headphones. Our results are only valid when used in this configuration.
The noise isolation performance is very good. These buds have an ANC system, and while they don't block out quite as much background noise as the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro True Wireless, they can still tackle some of the low rumble of bus and plane engines. They do a better job of cutting down ambient chatter and the high-pitched whine of computer fans.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE have an outstanding leakage performance. Leakage is mostly concentrated in the bass range, which sounds full-bodied. However, overall leakage is very low, so if you're listening to your favorite tunes at a high volume, people around you won't hear it unless you're in a very quiet environment.
The integrated mic has a decent recording quality. There are slight differences in frequency response compared to the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro True Wireless, particularly in the treble range, which improves their high-frequency extension and, in turn, how bright and open your voice sounds. Overall, your voice is clear and intelligible.
The mic has a great noise handling performance. The mic can separate your voice from background noise quite well, so you're understandable, even in busy environments like a train station.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE have a mediocre battery performance. The manufacturer advertises that these buds last 8.5 hours with ANC off and six hours with ANC on. That's similar to the over six hours we measured with ANC on. Battery life varies depending on use, though, and volume and features like voice call can impact battery life. The carrying case holds 3.5 additional charges if needed, and you can even use one bud while the other charges.
The Galaxy Wearable app is good. However, it's unavailable on iOS devices, so you can't adjust your headphones' settings to your liking unless you use an Android device. There are features like EQ presets, an earbud fit test, and a 'Game Mode', which lowers latency on Samsung devices. You can customize your control layout and manage features like ANC and in-ear detection. You can see a video of how it works here.
You can't use these headphones wired. They come with a USB-C to USB-C cable to recharge the case.
These buds have good Bluetooth connectivity. While they don't support multi-device pairing, they have some unique features for Samsung devices. They have a Game Mode, which lowers latency on Samsung devices, so you can game with minimal lip sync issues. They also support Seamless, Samsung's proprietary codec intended to improve audio quality. That said, they otherwise only support AAC and SBC codecs. Their latency via SBC is quite high, and you'll experience a delay between your audio and visuals. Some apps and devices compensate for latency, though.
These headphones can only connect to Bluetooth-enabled PCs. On the upside, you'll have full audio and mic compatibility.
These headphones come with a carrying case that holds roughly 3.5 extra charges. There's a USB-C port for recharging the case. However, unlike the Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Truly Wireless, the case doesn't support wireless charging.