Doing it right
Jabra Elite 7 Pro
$200 at Amazon
- Excellent audio quality
- Effective ANC
- Great fit and comfort
- Outstanding call quality
- Reliable button controls
- Solid battery life
- ANC must be customized
- No multipoint yet
Jabra carries on its penchant for making earbuds that find themselves in the conversation among the best in the industry. The Elite 7 Pro fall well within that, starting with fit and comfort to set the soundstage for sonic excellence, clearer call quality, and solid battery life.
Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro
$125 at Amazon
- Bolder sound
- More custom fit
- Solid ANC performance
- Dynamic ambient mode
- Significant water resistance
- Lower battery life
- Fit requires more fidgeting
- Ambient mode not as good
Samsung squeezed everything it could into the Galaxy Buds Pro, leading to a collection of features that converge into a successful pair of earbuds worth considering. Fit and comfort are hard to read for everyone, but you do get active noise cancelation, ambient mode, and 360 Audio.
A lot of companies that make earbuds like to use “Pro” to define a particular pair as having more than just the basics. That’s why you see it pop up a fair bit, even if not all of the best wireless earbuds include it. Jabra addressed a couple of key things in making the Elite 7 Pro stand out as one of the best you can find, whereas the Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro are more than capable in stacking up against the best. With that much at stake, these two make for an interesting matchup.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro vs. Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro: Proving themselves
Specs provide clues and sometimes set expectations, and these two are hardly just about what’s on paper, but some points do stand out. Both have the same water resistance, except the Elite 7 Pro are the more durable pair because they also include dust resistance, making them better suited for all-around activity. Jabra went with a more rubberized design in the Elite 7 Active, though unlike past years, it maintained the same IP rating for its more flagship pair.
|Bud battery life||Up to 8 hours||Up to 8 hours|
|Charging case battery life||30 hours (38 without ANC)||18 hours (28 without ANC)|
|Connectivity||Bluetooth 5.2||Bluetooth 5.1|
|Digital assistant support||Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri||Bixby, Google Assistant, Siri|
|Supported audio codecs||SBC, AAC||SBC, AAC, Scalable|
|Speaker size||6mm drivers||13mm drivers|
|Active noise cancelation||Yes||Yes|
Battery life also takes a turn for the better for Jabra because the rated numbers refer to when active noise cancelation (ANC) is on, rather than off. For Samsung, it’s the reverse, with the Galaxy Buds Pro maxing out at closer to five to six hours with ANC on. Indeed, the Elite 7 Pro probably play for up to two hours longer per charge than the Buds Pro do. Granted, Jabra didn’t put in drivers as big and powerful as those in the Buds Pro, but you wouldn’t necessarily tell the difference in most instances.
Samsung has the smaller case for better portability, matching Jabra by offering three extra charges for the earbuds. Both pairs also come with three sizes of ear tips for a better fit, and it’s how these two brands built their respective earbuds that sets them apart in certain ways.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro vs. Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro: Noting the contrasts
Jabra made the Elite 7 Pro to address a design flaw in the otherwise solid Elite 85t, which was to thin out the body. It worked because they are among the most comfortable pair you’re likely to wear right now. Their contoured and thinner frame works for a variety of ear types, and that’s a big reason the other elements come together to make them so effective.
Samsung equipped the Galaxy Buds Pro with a slew of features that necessitated making the earbuds larger. That noticeable bump may not fit quite as snugly in the inner ear (concha), and it’s very possible those with smaller ears will feel it more than others. It’s one of those design tweaks that can make all the difference when comparing two earbuds that are both objectively good choices. Samsung has also been dogged by issues related to skin irritation.
It worked because they are among the most comfortable pair you’re likely to wear right now.
I would say the same is true about the onboard controls. Jabra has long made them physical buttons for more reliable and consistent performance. Like so many others, the Galaxy Buds Pro use touch-sensitive controls, and while reasonably good here, they’re not going to match the effectiveness of actual buttons. In addition to their respective apps, both pairs have “Find My” features to track the earbuds in case you misplace them, so you know their last location.
They diverge a little when it comes to ANC. For some reason, Jabra forces you to personalize the feature first before you can even turn it on to use it, a mandatory point that doesn’t always feel necessary. You can adjust its intensity later, much like how Samsung offers high and low settings for ANC on the Galaxy Buds Pro. It also paired ANC with the ambient mode for Voice Detect, a feature that the volume of whatever you’re listening to, so you can hear and talk to someone without taking them off.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro vs. Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro: Sounds and calls
Both earbuds sound great, so you start off from a good sonic position, though there are some interesting caveats between them. I already mentioned the fit, and that plays a big role in how good the sound comes through because of how tightly sealed the earbuds are when you put them on. Jabra holds an edge there, but its Sound+ app also gives you an equalizer (EQ) to tailor the sound the way you want.
Samsung’s Galaxy Wearable app is deep, yet only gives you a select number of EQ presets. You can’t manually adjust the EQ to create your own like Jabra lets you do. If only Samsung did open it up the same way, as it would enhance the sound even further. The Galaxy Buds Pro have a hearty bass response to go with solid mids and highs. It’s a balanced soundstage that works for a variety of genres. They offer excellent ANC and ambient performance, only adding to the package. And 360 Audio is cool when watching a show or movie — a feature Jabra doesn’t have.
Both earbuds sound great, so you start off from a good sonic position, though there are some interesting caveats between them.
The Elite 7 Pro offer great balance in the same vein, with excellent sound quality made all the better by the fit and app support. Not to mention the excellent ANC and HearThrough ambient modes, too. While both are also great at phone calls, Jabra carries the day because of its MultiSensor Voice Technology, which clears up phone and video calls using proprietary tech coming straight from the company’s hearing aid business. Improved mics help the cause, only simplifying how you access voice assistants, record voice notes, or leave voice messages. Physical buttons also give you a mute button you can use for calls, super handy when you need it.
What’s disappointing is that Jabra didn’t include multipoint connections out of the box. Until Jabra releases a firmware update in early 2022 to fix that, you can only pair with one device at a time. The Galaxy Buds Pro don’t have that issue, letting you pair with two devices simultaneously via Auto-Switch. Moreover, if you have two compatible Galaxy devices, the earbuds will automatically switch from one to the other when prompted, like taking a call on a phone, while watching something else on a laptop or tablet.
Color options do vary, with Jabra’s Elite 7 Pro coming in black, Titanium Black, and Gold Beige, while the Galaxy Buds Pro come in Phantom Black, Phantom Silver, and Phantom Violet.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro vs. Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro: Which should you choose?
There really isn’t a bad choice between these two. The Elite 7 Pro bring a lot to the table that is easy to like, and only grows on you once you put them on and press play. Combine the fit, comfort, audio quality, battery life, and app support, and you have great value for the money. The Galaxy Buds Pro are competitive in their own right, checking a lot of the right boxes. It’s just that the design and limited EQ options could be mitigating factors.
Samsung is going to replace the Galaxy Buds Pro before Jabra does the same with the Elite 7 Pro, so this matchup will change as the Buds Pro continue to drop in price. If you’re deep into Samsung’s ecosystem, they won’t disappoint, though that’s not a prerequisite to try them out. The Elite 7 Pro edge out the Buds Pro in a tight race, and will work well no matter what device you’re using.
Jabra Elite 7 Pro
An Elite performer
$200 at Amazon
$200 at Best Buy
The Elite 7 Pro are Jabra’s best combination of all the features and functions that make wireless earbuds great.
Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro
Good sound and more
$125 at Amazon $130 at Best Buy $130 at B&H
Samsung takes its best true wireless earbuds to the next level by adding new features that set them apart from past versions.