Master & Dynamic’s first true wireless earphones are better than rivals in literally every way
I wanted so badly to love Apple’s AirPods. For a long time, I even convinced myself that I did. The concept of truly wireless earbuds is terrific, and Apple’s AirPods delivered the best sound I had ever heard from cord-free buds when they were first released back in 2016. Whether or not AirPods users are willing to admit it though, Apple’s design is badly flawed and I quickly grew tired of dealing with it.
Like other Apple earbuds, AirPods are made of smooth plastic from top to bottom. It looks great, but there’s a reason most earbuds have rubber tips. Rubbery material provides grip that keeps the tips of the earbuds snug in your ear canal. This isn’t merely to provide a secure fit, it’s also to ensure that the earbuds maintain sound isolation. An imperfect seal in your ear means that sound leaks as you listen to music, mostly at the low end of the spectrum. The result is severe degradation of audio quality and that’s exactly what happens when you use Apple’s AirPods. Regardless of how many times you angrily stuff them back into your ears they always end up slowly sliding out until they break the seal.