today is Jan 17, 2022

Beats Fit Pro Hero Source: Ted Kritsonis / Android Central

I'll admit it: Beats headphones have rarely, if ever, impressed me. I get that the bass-heavy sound appeals to a wider swath of listeners, but that kind of sound is also a lot easier to emulate. A changing approach at Beats is offering different strokes for different folks, and that's one way to describe the Beats Fit Pro wireless earbuds.

In some ways, they follow the Beats Studio Bud's lead in trying to strike a balance between fit, comfort, sound quality, and accessibility. That last one is always tricky for Android users wearing an Apple-owned property like Beats, and it does mean you have to accept some compromises to get the best out of the Fit Pro.

Beats Fit Pro review:

  • Price and availability
  • What's good
  • What's not good
  • The competition
  • Should you buy?

At a glance

Beats Fit Pro Render

Beats Fit Pro

Bottom line: The Beats Fit Pro are a joy to use when you get them to fit perfectly, and deliver crowd-pleasing sound at every turn. It's just that you don't get everything they're capable of doing when rocking an Android device, and that's where the cracks start to show.

The Good

  • Good sound quality
  • Great fit if you can get it
  • Solid ANC and Transparency
  • Reliable onboard controls
  • OK battery life

The Bad

  • No multipoint connections
  • Not rugged enough for workout buds
  • No equalizer in the app
  • No wireless charging

Beats Fit Pro: Price and availability

The Beats Fit Pro launched in November 2021 at $199.99. They aren't going to see a price drop until the brand releases something newer, so barring a brief price drop or a sale, you can expect them to cost that much. At least they won't be hard to find with several retailers carrying them, including in the four color variants they come in: black, white, sage gray, and purple.

Beats Fit Pro: What's good

Beats Fit Pro Close Source: Ted Kritsonis / Android Central

As their name implies, the Beats Fit Pro have activity in mind, which means there's a direct correlation to fit and comfort. I'll start there because of the caveats involved. The Fit Pro use an ear wing design to anchor onto the concha to keep them from wiggling too much. I found it worked as advertised — at least for my ears. The wings are affixed to the buds themselves, and though rubberized and flexible, they do only come in one size. They are a bit thicker than other similar earbuds, so it's a toss up on whether you will like these if you have smaller ears.

You won't care too much about that if they do feel comfortable because the fit and comfort largely coincide here. Get the right fit, figure out the best seal with one of the ear tips (which you can swap out), and you end up with a nice pair of buds to go about your day. The Beats app (made specifically for Android users) steps in to help in case you're not sure about which tips use through the onboard fit test.

As their name implies, the Beats Fit Pro have activity in mind, which means there's a direct correlation to fit and comfort.

Not surprisingly, there is a healthy amount of bass right out of the box, though I didn't expect it to be as restrained as it was. Beats suppresses mids and highs just enough to let the lows take over, except with enough balance between them to make vocals and instruments easy to hear. In many ways, this is the kind of sound profile I'd expect from earbuds purporting to be workout-friendly, and it's equally unsurprising that a sound signature like this works well with the kind of music people are likely sweating to.

Apple's spatial audio also applies here, and it works in pretty much the same way. The H1 chip inside supports Dolby Head Tracking, albeit only with Apple's devices, so you only get the basic spatial effect here. I tried it watching shows and movies, and found it to be adequate.

You get this sound despite Beats not throwing a bone to Android users in the form of the aptX codec. Apple's devices only support SBC and AAC, the latter of which isn't as prevalent for Android. Qualcomm's aptX codec tends to bring out the best in those devices, and given Beats' obvious olive branch to those using Android, adopting it would've truly made a statement. The Beats Fit Pro do support Fast Pair, and you can find it on by default in the Beats app and going to App Settings. That might be unexpected for a product like this with Android, but there it is.

Beats Fit Pro Screen Beats Fit Pro Screen Beats Fit Pro Screen Source: Ted Kritsonis / Android Central

At least there's active noise cancelation (ANC) and Transparency mode to augment sound where you need it. The ANC isn't going to compete with the likes of the Sony WF-1000XM4 or Bose QuietComfort Earbuds, but it's adequate for the job. I would even put it a nudge below the AirPods Pro. It manages to decently muffle low-frequency sounds, but not to the point where it feels truly far away. You'll notice this if you're riding on a bus or plane, just as you'll notice that high-frequency sounds can break through sometimes. Transparency is good at piping in background sound to enable you to hear and talk to someone. These are both one-shot deals, by the way, as there is no scale to increase or decrease intensity.

Physical buttons make up the onboard controls, reducing false positives that sometimes happen with touch controls. I did have to be careful handling the earbuds because it was easy to push either button when trying to adjust them; one reason why the snug and secure fit is so important to offset that. Controls are pretty standard: click once to play/pause, twice to skip, three times to repeat. Hold down either button to cycle between ANC and Transparency. You do have the option to switch the hold to volume up and down, but that's it. The Press and Hold section in the app serves this up as an option, but just as useful is switching one of the buds to control Google Assistant. iOS users have hands-free access to Siri, and Android users don't have that luck yet.

Beats Fit Pro Hand Source: Ted Kritsonis / Android Central

Phone call quality is very good, and perhaps too good. While I was very clear to callers, they were also hearing sounds I was making while talking, like chopping up vegetables or opening up a garbage bag, both of which I've done with other earbuds without complaint. What's strange about this is that it looked to me from the app that the earbuds were on ANC while I was talking. I had better success when using one earbud solo since the app has an option to turn on noise canceling when only using one bud.

Battery life is good, depending on how you look at it. Beats rates the Fit Pro at up to six hours per charge with ANC on. That's not bad, except it doesn't account for the likelihood that you'll be raising the volume often while wearing them. The default volume is surprisingly low, and I had to raise it to levels I rarely ever reach with other pairs. That lowered the overall charge to under five hours, which isn't great. If you are looking at these as workout buds, you might not mind the lower battery life as much. Either way, the case gives you another three full charges, plus fast charge where you get an hour's worth of playback after plugging in for just five minutes.

Beats Fit Pro: What's not good

Beats Fit Pro Case Source: Ted Kritsonis / Android Central

Even if you like the way the Fit Pro sound, you have no way to alter them. It's unfortunate that Beats charges this price and can't see to it to put an equalizer into the app when so many other competitors routinely do so. It's a unique compromise you have to make as an Android user because Apple's Adaptive EQ only applies to the company's own devices. That's also why spatial audio and head tracking aren't the same here.

I already mentioned the potential pitfalls of the way these earbuds may not fit well, but there's something else. The IPX4 rating is actually primitive for what any company can term "workout earbuds" and it comes off as sorely lacking when I compare them to others that are considerably more durable. Water and sweat resistance is at the lower level with the Fit Pro, which means that you have to be extra vigilant to clean and wipe them down so that salt doesn't ruin the internal components.

The IPX4 rating is actually primitive for what any company can term 'workout earbuds.'

I also can't figure out Apple and Beats' reasoning behind not including multipoint connections. You can only pair the Fit Pro with one device at a time, which seems like a strange limitation for earbuds that are supposed to fit in one's broader lifestyle. If you're bobbing your head to tunes on your computer and a call comes in on your phone, you will have to answer the call and then manually switch the earbuds over. That's assuming even that process is smooth.

It's also baffling that Beats and Apple wouldn't include wireless charging for the case. If people are paying this much for earbuds, they should have wireless charging, especially when the company owning the brand incessantly markets its own wireless charging accessories. Granted, they do charge quickly via USB-C, but at this price, it's not right to leave out such a convenient feature.

Beats Fit Pro: Competition

Beats Fit Pro Wearing Source: Ted Kritsonis / Android Central

The Beats FIt Pro are good earbuds, although they face a lot of stiff competition from some of the best wireless earbuds. They feature the same water and sweat resistance as the AirPods Pro, which just didn't sit right with me when Apple's flagship pair aren't marketed distinctly as workout buds. They do sound similar, although the AirPods get an edge on ANC and Transparency performance. Still, as an Android user, you have to deal with trade-offs either way.

The Jaybird Vista 2 are a more compelling alternative for the sheer fact they are far more rugged, and offer a robust community developing EQ presets within Jaybird's app. You can alter how those sound in hundreds of different ways. The Jabra Elite 7 Pro sound better, are more ruggedized, offer outstanding phone calls, and will get multipoint support via a firmware update.

Beats Fit Pro: Should you buy it?

Beats Fit Pro Overhead Source: Ted Kritsonis / Android Central

You should buy this if ...

  • You want the Beats logo in your ears
  • You don't want the AirPods Pro
  • You want a comfortable fit
  • You want an ear wing design
  • You want active noise cancelation

You shouldn't buy this if ...

  • You want an equalizer in the app
  • You want aptX support
  • You want more durability
  • You want multipoint connections

There are really good things about the Beats Fit Pro, and I did end up liking those features and functions. It's just that I've also tried so many other earbuds that either offer more for less, or do right by Android users for the same coin. You don't get enough to customize here, and certain missing features did grate on me after a while, which is why it's hard to recommend these earbuds to anyone wielding an Android device right now.

It's always possible Beats and Apple could update the Fit Pro firmware to add things that aren't there, though I feel like iOS users will get first dibs on whatever they may be, with the hope they trickle over to Android. That may not be worth the price of entry right now.

Beats Fit Pro Render

Beats Fit Pro

Bottom line: Beats tried to woo Android users with the Fit Pro by opening the doors to more than just the basics, and for the most part, it turns out to be a good thing. Still, you do have to sacrifice some features and functions, and that casts a shadow over these solid earbuds.

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