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The Free Pro 2 earbuds are a great companion for the gym, commutes and travelling. So if you need ANC-on-a-budget, check them out.
The Earfun Free Pro 2s are proof that you don’t have to pay big money for a pair of wireless earbuds with noise cancellation. An impressive effort that won’t worry the big players in the scene, but provides fantastic value for well under £100.
Great audio quality. Compact. Affordable. Comfortable. Durable. Attractive. Not many wireless earbuds can offer you all of those traits.
Most, even the high-end models, typically seek to find a balance. Premium models, such as the Apple AirPods, offer top-notch sound quality at a price. Budget models often give you affordability – but you will have to compromise on audio.
And no, we are not about to sit here and claim that the Free Pro 2s find the perfect balance. Like all earbuds, they try to find the sweet spot between specs, price, comfort, and design. But they definitely did surprise us.
At £69.99, they won’t break the bank. Noise cancellation was more than enough to block out the strange choice to have Songs of Praise playing in the gym on Sunday. They look great, fit well in the ear and are bundled with multiple attachments.
Audiophiles aside, most people are likely to be more than satisfied with the EarFun Free Pro 2s. The price is right, and compromises are ultimately minimal.
Keep reading to find out how we got on with the earbuds during testing over the past week. Check out our EarFun Air Pro 2 review for more on the brand. If you want high-end, be sure to read our Apple AirPods 3 review and Sony WF-1000XM4 review.
Like other models from the EarFun brand, the Free Pro 2s are a sub-£100 pair of wireless earbuds that come with active noise cancellation (ANC).
Unlike the EarFun Air Pro 2s, they do not have an AirPods-like stem design, instead offering a squared-off in-ear bud closer in looks to the Bose QuietComforts or the Jabra Elite Active 75Ts. They fit snugly in the ear and have IPX5 water and sweat proofing, making them very well-suited for running and gym sessions.
At just under £70, they fit well into the category of budget earbuds. But we were pleasantly surprised by the audio quality, particularly with ANC on.
The bud output is full, loud and bass-heavy without sounding muddy, and there are Normal and Ambient modes too if you need to let some of some sounds from the outside world in, for example, when walking down a busy street.
Like the previously-reviewed Air Pro 2s, we are not particularly enamoured with the ambient mode, and we still wish there were more colour options available.
But it’s a thumbs up for the Free Pro 2s: touch controls work well, the battery is solid, the case can be charged wirelessly, and they are easy to set up. Sure, Apple won’t be worried, but if you are looking for ANC-on-a-budget, we recommend them.
Price: EarFun Free Pro 2s are available at Amazon, priced at £69.99.
The EarFun Free Pro 2s are a pair of wireless earbuds that are attractively priced at £69.99. The selling point is the noise cancellation of up to 40 decibels (dB), which is a scale used to show the sensitivity of your ears to sound frequencies.
Of course, this won’t block out every loud sound around you but will typically be more than enough for exercising, commuting, and travelling. It won’t get rid of car horns or alarm clocks, but 40dB is roughly the frequency of a quiet library. This is the exact same level offered by the EarFun Air Pro 2s, and both work well.
The EarFun Free Pro 2s are firmly in the budget category of wireless earbuds and currently sell for £69.99 on Amazon. That’s not the more affordable pair out there – brands such as JLab, Skullcandy and Anker have models priced between £20 and £40, but these won’t have any significant noise cancellation, and we would be wary of any earbud that claimed to have decent noise cancellation for that price.
The EarFun Free Pro 2s are in-ear earbuds that shirk the stem design popularized by the Apple AirPods. They have a nice two-tone colour scheme: the bottom side closest to the bud being black, and the front – home to a subtle EarFun logo – is a gunmetal grey. Around the sides is a rubbery ear hook that helps keep it in place.
Each bud is a little under 2 cm, and they benefit greatly from using a matte colour scheme. They look more premium and understated when compared to the shiny materials used on some other budget earbuds, including the Air Pro 2s.
We really liked the minimalist aesthetic, but just like other models from the brand, we can’t help but wish there were a couple of fun colours that echo the company’s name. Perhaps a black/orange or blue/grey – something more out-of-the-ordinary that would really help to set the EarFun buds apart from the black-grey crowd.
You get quite a lot of features on the EarFun Free Pro 2s for your £70. While there is nothing as fancy as swipe controls or a dedicated smartphone app to alter the EQ mix, there are lots of ways to control your audio by simple touch commands.
One tap on the right will raise the volume, one tap on the left will lower it, while three taps on the right bud will skip to the next track. Tapping twice on either of the earbuds will answer or end a call. Switching between listening modes – normal, ambient and ANC is done by holding down the left bud for two seconds. A voice assistant announces the new mode as you toggle between them.
It can be a little fiddly, but we found the controls to be broadly intuitive once you know how to work them. A couple of times, we changed the volume or paused the music when we actually wanted to change the listening mode but found the touch commands to generally be responsive and smooth.
They are highly portable, in large part thanks to the slim-line charging case, which retained a surprisingly premium feel with a matte grey colour scheme. And when you bring them out into the world, having an IPX5 waterproof rating will help protect them against splashes – including sweat from a gym workout.
The Free Pro 2 charging case can be charged using any Qi wireless charger. It worked well during testing and is a welcome feature to have for anyone who has a pad on their desk. If you don’t have one, check out our guide to the best wireless charger.
Speaking of welcome features, the EarFun Free Pro 2s launch a voice assistant when connected to your phone by tapping and holding the right bud for two seconds. Doing so on our Pixel 6 Pro gave the option of using Google Assistant or Alexa. It is not a feature that we used much during daily use, but great to have at this price point.
During our time testing the Free Pro 2s – with a Google Pixel 6 Pro – we were more than satisfied with the audio they produced. There is no app for altering EQ mixes or anything as fancy as that, but sound output is solid out-of-the-box.
Over the course of a week, we tested the earbuds in the gym on multiple occasions and found the ANC mode to be impressive in blocking out unwanted distractions, while the normal mode is nice to have for home use – when you may need to listen out for deliveries or timers. We found ourselves ignoring the ambient mode. That’s not to say it’s terrible, more so that it’s just an awkward middle ground.
The ANC mode produces, in our opinion, the best listening experience. Bass is loud without sounding muddy and works well with multiple genres of music.
We have a couple of go-to playlists for testing out sound mixes – Deftones’ White Pony, Spotify’s ‘Beats to think to’ playlist, Metallica’s Battery, and Flume/Moon Holiday’s Insane – and the Free Pro 2s performed admiralty in all.
Sure, audiophiles used to the high-end brands need not apply, but for a pair of £70 earbuds, we walked away impressed – and believe the EarFun Free Pro 2s do more than enough to satisfy most typical users. Some more options to control the EQ mix would be welcome, but we found the audio quality to be strong throughout.
The EarFun Free Pro 2 earbuds each contain a 35mAh battery, while the charging case has a 420mAh battery that can be refuelled using a Qi power bank.
In unison, that will give you more than enough juice for multiple gym sessions, a commute to work and back, or a long flight (not all of those activities without topping up, of course). The case charges using a supplied USB-C cable.
With the ANC on, you will get roughly five hours of playback time, which increases to around 25 hours with the case. With noise-cancelling off, you will get around six hours of playback and roughly 30 hours of power with the case. As with all earbuds, battery life will be hugely impacted by volume level and how long they’re on.
Charging the earbuds and case to full using the supplied USB-C cable takes roughly two hours, which rises to approximately 3.5 hours if using a Qi wireless charger.
From unboxing to pairing, it only takes a couple of minutes to get the EarFun Free Pro 2s set up. Before you start listening, it’s advised to fully charge the buds and the case. (You will see a solid white light on the case indicator when full).
Be sure to have a look at the extra ear tips and ear hooks that come in the box. It’s important for the earbuds to fit snugly if you want the best sound quality.
Pairing to an Android or iOS smartphone (via Bluetooth 5.2) is simple, too. Opening the case for the first time enters the earbuds into the pairing mode. Simply select the Free Pro 2 option from the list of available devices when it pops up.
If you want to alter what handset, tablet or computer the buds are paired to, you can either unpair them from the connected device’s Bluetooth menu or hold both earbuds at the same time for three seconds to re-launch into the pairing mode.
The EarFun Free Pro 2 earbuds aren’t out to destroy Apple, Bose, Sennheiser, Sony or any of the high-end audio giants. Priced at just under £70, they are firmly in the category of budget, but that doesn’t mean that they should be dismissed.
If you want an affordable set of noise-cancelling earbuds with an easy set-up, touch controls and compact design, the Free Pro 2s are unlikely to disappoint.
While the brand’s appeal is clearly based on offering good-sounding affordable earbuds, but we do wish it did a little more to stand out from the crowd. Scrolling through Amazon, you could easily gloss over the Free Pro 2s among the sea of black or grey models. Not having some fun colours in the mix is a missed opportunity.
They are a great companion for the gym, commutes and travelling. They are comfortable to wear for long periods of time and offer solid audio quality regardless of the genre – whether you are a metalhead or a fan of low-fi beats. They are not intended for audiophiles, but anyone who needs ANC-on-a-budget should check them out.
Overall rating: 3.8/5
The EarFun Free Pro 2s are available at Amazon, priced at £69.99.
For the latest news, reviews and deals, check out the RadioTimes.com Technology section. Here’s our list of the best budget wireless earbuds of the year.
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