AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Which noise-cancelling earbuds win?

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The first-gen AirPods Pro popularized the noise-cancelling earbuds category, but it was the Beats Fit Pro that showed us Apple could create a near-perfect true wireless model with similar substance and superior style. In fact, some experts argue Beats’ offering is the better model overall. But now with the AirPods Pro 2 entering the market, it’s time to update the conversation and determine Apple’s best wireless earbuds to date.

Both models have extensive feature sets that elevate the audio experience from a iPhone and MacBook. We’re talking everything from active noise cancellation (ANC) to Personalized Spatial Audio to numerous other perks sprinkled throughout iOS. Even their designs serve multi-functional purposes (e.g., ambient listening, commuting, exercising).

This comparison breaks down both models to help you choose the right Apple buds for your noise-cancelling and budgetary needs.

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Specs compared

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Row 0 - Cell 0 Apple AirPods Pro 2Beats Fit Pro
Price$249$199
Wireless charging caseYesNo
ChipH2H1
Battery life (rated)5.5 hours (Spatial Audio and Head Tracking on) 6 hours (ANC on); 7 hours (ANC off); 30 hours (charging case with ANC on); 34 hours (charging case with ANC off)6 hours (ANC on), 7 hours (ANC Off), 27 hours (ANC on with charging case), 30 hours (ANC off with charging case)
Water resistanceIPX4 (buds and charging case)IPX4 (buds only)
Size1.22 x 0.86 x 0.94 inches (per bud); 1.78 x 2.39 x 0.85 inches (charging case)0.75 x 1.18 x 0.94 inches (per bud); 1.12. x 2.44. x 2.44 inches (charging case)
Weight0.19 ounces (per bud); 1.79 ounces (charging case)0.2 ounces (per bud); 1.94 ounces (charging case)
Special featuresANC, adaptive transparency mode, adaptive EQ, personalized spatial audio, automatic switching, Ear Tip Fit Test, physical volume controls, audio sharing, announced messages with Siri, Find My (AirPods), “Hey Siri” voice-activated assistance, Live Listen, MagSafe charging case with built-in speaker, Apple Watch charging, lanyard loop supportANC, adaptive EQ, personalized spatial audio, transparency mode, automatic switching, audio sharing, announced messages with Siri, Ear Tip Fit Test, “Hey Siri” voice-activated assistance, Find My in iOS

AirPods Pro 2

(Image credit: Future)

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Price and availability

The AirPods Pro 2 launched with the same MSRP as the original: $249. Meanwhile, Beats released the $199 Fit Pro at a more competitive price point.

Amazon is currently selling the AirPods Pro 2 for $10 less (opens in new tab) at the time of publishing, and although the Beats are currently available at their full MSRP they can frequently be found on sale, and we’ve seen them go as low as $159. The odds of both products being part of this year’s best Black Friday deals and best Cyber Monday deals are high.

Whether at full price or on discount, each set of buds makes for a worthy investment.

Bookmark our best AirPods deals and best headphones deals pages to stay notified of the latest wireless earbuds sales.

WinnerTie

The Beats Fit Pro on a bed of leaves

(Image credit: Regan Coule/Future)

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Design

The Fit Pro is the more attractive and durable option. It is sold in multiple colors: black, sage gray, stone purple, white, and three limited edition versions from the Kim Kardashian collection. These buds are mostly constructed from plastic and offer the same IPX4 protection as the AirPods Pro 2, though the material used here feels sturdier and won’t crack if dropped on the concrete too hard. The installed wing tips fold nicely into the upper part of your ear, keeping the buds in place during runs, while the tips produce a tight seal for proper on-ear stabilization. Apple’s Ear Tip Fit Test is available for adjustment advice. Our only complaint is the multifunctional button, which requires pressing and pushes the buds further into your ears, causing soreness around the concha after a few attempts.

The Beats x Kim Beats Fit Pro.

(Image credit: Beats)

Apple changed very little with regard to the AirPods Pro 2’s earbud design but does now come with skin-detect sensors. Everything else is remarkably similar, from the all-plastic frame to the angled sound port that easily slides into the canal. Further testing showed us the AirPods Pro 2 is a more practical alternative for running than the first-gen model, with the new tip kit providing a tighter grip. The Ear Tip Fit Test helps achieve optimal fit.     

Both the Apple and Beats charging cases are compact and portable-friendly. Even though the AirPods Pro 2’s case now comes with cool features like built-in tracking and IPX4 certification, we favor the Fit Pro’s more stylish appearance and stronger build quality.

Winner: Beats Fit Pro

Reviewer wearing AirPods Pro 2 for running and using touch controls

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Controls

Apple figured out how to improve on perfection: add touch volume controls to the Force Sensor. This new feature operates flawlessly on the AirPods Pro 2, using slide gestures to seamlessly adjust volume instead of pressing the sensors. You can still activate commands through single, multi-, and long-press gestures, which execute commands with precision. Motion detection is available to initiate auto-pause when taking out one bud. “Hey Siri” functionality completes the package to enjoy excellent hands-free digital assistance.

The Fit Pro sticks to a more traditional control scheme with an MF button sitting at the front of each bud. Functional staples such as Siri voice activation, wear detection, and the ability to assign controls in the iOS settings are all on board. Everything performs well, but the Force Sensor setup is more accommodating and less painful on your ears.

Winner: AirPods Pro 2

The Beats Fit Pro playing music on Apple Music

(Image credit: Regan Coule/Future)

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Sound quality

These are easily Apple’s two best-sounding true wireless earbuds. Let’s begin with the AirPods Pro 2, which retains the adaptive EQ and receives notable upgrades such as a new low-distortion driver and custom amplifier for richer, energetic sound. You can still tweak audio performance by switching between numerous EQ presets in iOS. There are even features like Headphone Accommodations that let you tune balance, range, and brightness. Lastly, you get Personalized Spatial Audio with dynamic headtracking. This updated version scans your ears and head to create a personalized sound profile that enhances 3D effects when listening to Dolby Atmos-supported content. It works exceptionally well.

The Fit Pro may have an older spec sheet, but underneath the hood lies a powerful speaker driver and Apple’s adaptive EQ to dish out lively, well-balanced sound. Beats’ sound profile is better suited for music listening. These buds also carry most of the AirPods Pro 2’s audio features (all those mentioned above). The Fit Pro’s headtracking technology isn’t the most accurate, but the 3D sound is still satisfying.

Winner: Tie

Our reviewer running with AirPods Pro 2

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Active noise cancellation

Apple claims that active noise cancelling for the AirPods Pro 2 has been significantly improved, and can “reduce up to two times more unwanted background noise.” That's difficult to accurately assess, but subjectively the ANC feels improved and is very effective. Outdoor listening was peaceful, as the buds tamed low- and mid-frequency noises. These buds reduce high-frequency noises and wind presence better than their predecessor; the soundstage won’t be affected as much by whisking effects or blaring noises. Adaptive Transparency is another new feature introduced on the AirPods Pro 2 that greatly increases awareness of surroundings.

When it launched, we praised the Fit Pro for having ANC performance similar to the original AirPods Pro. It still does a fantastic job of silencing common distractions like doorbells, kitchen appliances, and talkative pedestrians. Transparency mode is just as good for environmental awareness. Apple also gives you access to the same ambient listening alternative as the AirPods Pro 2: Live Listen, which uses the iPhone mics to capture noises that you can hear on the buds. 

The improvement in high-frequency neutralization is what gives the AirPods Pro 2 this round.

WinnerAirPods Pro 2

Showing fit test screen for AirPods Pro 2

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Special features and apps

Very few features separate these two products, but let’s quickly touch on the features that they share. On the list: ANC, adaptive EQ, announced messages with Siri, audio share, automatic switching, control customization, Ear Tip Fit Test, EQ, Find My support, “Hey Siri” voice activation, Live Listen, Personalized Spatial Audio, and Transparency mode.   

The AirPods Pro 2’s charging case sends out a tone through the speaker that indicates charging statuses, low battery, pairing or to help locate the case when misplaced, which is tracked through the Find My app. These buds operate on Bluetooth 5.3 for faster, high-bandwidth connectivity when paired to iOS/macOS devices and can achieve up to 45 feet of wireless range. Not to mention they operate on the new H2 chip.

Even without Apple’s latest processor, the Beats Fit Pro’s H1 processor functions at a high level across all platforms. You’ll instantly connect to Apple devices and achieve the same range at up to 45 feet. The Fit Pro is more platform-neutral, easily pairing to Android devices and demonstrating great auto-connect capabilities. It also comes with Android app support. At the same time, these buds run on a less powerful Bluetooth protocol (5.0) and lack cool niche features like Precision Finding with the charging case.

WinnerAirPods Pro 2

Our reviewing taking a Facetime call on the Beats Fit Pro

(Image credit: Regan Coule/Future)

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Call quality

Neither model matches the original AirPods Pro’s call quality, but both are equally serviceable for voice and video calls. Most calls made on the AirPods Pro 2 sounded a little muffled compared to those taken on our iPhone speakerphone. The H2 chip does help eliminate some background noise through audio processing. Headtracking support for FaceTime calls makes conferencing chats feel more in-person when speaking in quiet settings.

The Fit Pro demonstrates solid vocal capture and noise cancellation, blocking out numerous external sounds, granted the technology struggles with the wind. You can expect great call quality on FaceTime calls as well.

Winner: Tie

AirPods Pro 2

(Image credit: Future)

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Battery life

The AirPods Pro 2 share the same playtimes as the Beats Fit Pro — 6 hours with ANC on and 7 hours with ANC off. A 5-minute quick charge gets you 1 hour of use on either set of buds. However, the AirPods Pro 2 offers slightly better battery management, lasts a little longer when using spatial audio (5.5 hours vs. 5 hours), and carries more portable power via MagSafe charging case (up to 34 hours).

The AirPods Pro 2 also offers more charging solutions, including Lightning, MagSafe, Qi-enabled and Apple Watch charging. USB-C is the only charging method for the Beats Fit Pro.

Winner: AirPods Pro 2

Apple AirPods Pro 2 vs. Beats Fit Pro: Verdict

We love the Beats Fit Pro for many reasons. It’s uncommon for non-AirPods models to come with most of the series’ high-end features (e.g., Spatial Audio, Find My), but these fitness buds do just that. Sound is energetic and the sporty aesthetics make them the more reliable workout companion. Despite the Fit Pro’s greatness, we still give the edge to the AirPods Pro 2.

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Row 0 - Cell 0 Apple AirPods Pro 2Beats Fit Pro
Price and value (5)55
Design (15)1213
Controls (10)109
Audio quality (20)1818
Active noise cancellation(20)1816
Special features and apps (15)1412
Call quality (5)33
Battery life (10)76
Total score (100)8782

The number of upgrades introduced on the AirPods Pro 2 might seem minimal on paper, but they are substantial in the bigger picture. Personalized Spatial Audio has been refined for enhanced immersive sound. The touch volume controls perfectly complement the Force Sensor system. Increases in playtime are greatly appreciated. Built-in Find My support for the MagSafe charging case is something you didn’t realize was essential until you misplace your unit. Lastly, the H2 processor makes the AirPods Pro 2 more futureproof. 

All these benefits place the AirPods Pro 2 at the top of Apple’s true wireless pyramid.

Next: Check out the best noise-cancelling earbuds to find out where each ranks compared to the rest of the models we've reviewed.

More: I tried the AirPods Pro 2 for a workout, and the fit surprised me    

A lifestyle journalist with an affinity for consumer products, Alex has over a decade of experience and has worked with popular publications such as Complex, Thrillist, Men’s Health, Gear Patrol, AskMen, and Hoop Magazine. He currently focuses on audio, reviewing the most coveted headphones in the market for both Tom’s Guide and Laptop Magazine.