Apple managed to significantly improve the audio quality in the AirPods Pro 2 without the need for lossless audio support, and in a new interview, Apple engineer Esge Andersen reveals some of the secrets about how it was achieved.
Bottom line: It’s all about airflow, Andersen said What hi-fi? (opens in a new tab) in a broad discussion. Andersen works for Apple’s acoustics team and describes how the company wanted to give everyone “an AirPods Max in their pocket.”
While the overall design of the AirPods Pro 2 matches almost identically to the original AirPods Pro, they’ve redesigned the vents to optimize airflow for the audio drivers, and apparently that was key to getting the improvement in fit. sound.
“How We Move Air”
“When we talk about good sound, it’s all about how we move air into the product, which is a bit weird because it’s not about the case or how it looks, it’s about making sure we’re also designing for airflow.” says andersen (opens in a new tab).
There was apparently a particular focus on improving high-frequency response, but the AirPods Pro 2 offer cleaner highs and deeper, more accurate bass. There is also fine tuning at each volume level.
Andersen also revealed how the headphones are designed to act slightly differently depending on the device they’re connected to, and that there’s a panel of “expert listeners” who help ensure the sound is as impressive as possible.
Analysis: the AirPods standard
Apple has been developing its AirPods wireless headphones since 2016, and the introduction of the first pair kicked off a new wave of technology: Almost every manufacturer now has a pair of wireless headphones on sale.
Even though there’s a lot of competition in the space right now, AirPods are still the technology to beat here, not least because of the high fidelity and supreme responsiveness offered by the AirPods Pro 2 (which we gave four and a half stars). five too).
Throw in the more affordable AirPods 3 and the more expensive AirPods Max, and consumers are well covered in terms of what they can choose from, though in this latest interview, Andersen admits that it’s impossible to make audio output perfect for every listener. .
The next step would be that support for lossless audio (which is available in Apple Music, don’t forget). Apple has previously said that you may need to develop your own alternative to the Bluetooth codec to get your headphones ready to go lossless.