Bang & Olufsen's Beoplay EX earbuds offer an AirPods-like design

Would you pay $399 for that design?

Bang & Olufsen

Bang & Olufsen has long offered true wireless earbuds, but its designs have all been monolithic models that might not fit as well as you'd like. The company is finally shaking things up, however, by introducing the Beoplay EX. It's B&O's first set of earbuds with an AirPods-like stem design, and the audio brand is promising a more comfortable fit thanks to the smaller in-ear housing. Whether or not you consider them more fashionable than AirPods is more a matter of opinion, but the black, black-and-blue and gold colors at least beat Apple's signature white for variety.

It's too early to say if B&O's claims of "superior sound" match reality. The Beoplay EX design allows for the company's largest-ever (9.2mm) drivers in wireless earbuds, though, so you'll at least get more power than in past models. B&O further boasts of improved call quality and Bluetooth 5.2 support.

And yes, you'll get the features that are virtually mandatory in upscale earbuds. You can expect active noise cancellation, IP57 dust/water resistance, two-device pairing and a battery case with wireless charging support. B&O is estimating a healthy (if increasingly expected) six hours of listening with ANC enabled, and a total 20 hours of playback when you use the case.

The caveat, as you'd imagine, is the price. B&O is selling the Beoplay EX for $399. That's on par with past models like the Beoplay EQ, but they're considerably more expensive than the AirPods Pro, not to mention other comparable buds like Sennheiser's Momentum True Wireless 2 and Sony's WF-1000XM4. Still, this is likely your top pick if you prefer B&O's sound and minimalist design.

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