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The AeroFit Pro earbuds inside their charging case.
Dave Carr / SoundGuys

Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro review

Safety first, sound quality second.
By

Published onJanuary 19, 2024

5.8
The bottom line
The Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro open-ear earbuds are designed with outdoor athletes in mind. The purpose of an open-ear design is to keep you aware of your surroundings while listening to music and exercising in busy environments. While the earbuds accomplish precisely this, it's important to remember the design prioritizes letting the outside world in over a full and immersive listening experience.

The Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro open-ear earbuds are designed with outdoor athletes in mind. The purpose of an open-ear design is to keep you aware of your surroundings while listening to music and exercising in busy environments. While the earbuds accomplish precisely this, it's important to remember the design prioritizes letting the outside world in over a full and immersive listening experience.
Product release date
November 3rd, 2023
Price
$169.99
Dimensions
Earbuds: 57 X 35 X 19 mm
Charging case: 80 X 65 X 24 mm
Weight
222.3g
Model Number
‎A3871
Waterproof
IPX5
What we like
Secure fit
IPX5 protection rating
Allow you to maintain awareness naturally
What we don't like
Lack of good-sounding preset EQs
Custom EQ is not very powerful
No "previous track" control option
5.8
SoundGuys Rating
6.7
User Rating
Rating Metric
Our Rating
User Rating
Isolation / Attenuation
3.7
7.0
7.0
Durability / Build Quality
7.0
4.0
4.0
Value
4.0
-
0.0
Design
6.5
-
0.0
Connectivity
9.0
-
0.0
Microphone
5.5
6.0
6.0
Portability
8.0
8.0
8.0
Battery Life
9.0
9.0
9.0
Feature
8.0
-
0.0
Comfort
6.5
6.0
6.0
MDAQS rating
Learn more
Timbre
3.1
Distortion
2.4
Immersiveness
1.7
Overall
2.3

The Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro is an “open-ear” style earbud designed for those who want to remain aware of their surroundings while listening to music, specifically outdoor cardio enthusiasts. Instead of having the driver in your ear like a traditional set of earbuds, the AeroFit Pro’s design lets the driver sit over your ear, allowing you to hear the outside world. Unfortunately, this compromises the sound quality, but at SoundGuys, we recognize the need for these products and why they’re popular with athletes. Curious to find out if the trade-off is worth it, I laced up my New Balance shoes, cued up my best 80’s workout montage playlist, and hit the streets.

Editor’s note: this is the first version of the article. Updates will follow as the market changes.

About this Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro review: We tested the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro over one week. The earbuds firmware ran version 1.42, and the Soundcore app ran version v3.4.7. The company provided the unit for this review.

With an open-ear design, IPX5 protection rating and a snug over-the-ear fit, the AeroFit Pro is an ideal choice for outdoor cardio enthusiasts, whether it’s on foot or bicycle.

What’s it like to use the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro?

The Soundcore AeroFit Pro earbuds are stored in a handy charging case. While these earbuds feature an IPX5 protection rating, the charging case does not. Our test model arrives in a “Dynamic Black” finish. You’re also provided with a detachable neckband and a USB-C charge cable. This magnetic, adjustable band ensures an extra secure fit while engaging in physical activity, although I found earbuds stay in place over my ears reasonably well without it.

A photo of the Soundcore AeroFit Pro's charging case.
With additional charges from the case, the AeroFit Pro offers up to 48 hours of playback time.

Opening the case automatically turns on the earbuds, and a small white bar-shaped light indicates the battery level of the charging case. With the earbuds’ hook-shaped design, I find it best to put them on in a rotating motion around the back of my ear. It will feel different at first, but remember, these are designed to sit on top of your ears, not in your ears. Attaching the magnetic neckband is simple, and the tension is easily adjustable while wearing the whole setup. There are also two physical buttons, one on each earbud, to control various features. Placing the earbuds back in the charging case and closing the lid automatically disconnects them from your device.

How do you control the Soundcore AeroFit Pro?

Close up of the AeroFit Pro earbuds.
Dave Carr / SoundGuys
Each earbud features a physical control button.

Each Soundcore AeroFit Pro earbud sports a single physical control button. You can customize these controls via the Soundcore app, but below is a breakdown of how the stock settings operate.

ActionLeft button Right button
Action
One press
Left button
Volume - / Answer call
Right button
Volume + / Answer call
Action
Double press
Left button
Next track
Right button
Play / Pause
Action
Hold (1 sec)
Left button
Hang up/reject a call
Right button
Hang up/reject a call
Action
Hold (2 sec)
Left button
Power on / off
Right button
Power on / off

It’s worth noting that no “previous track” control is available on the AeroFit Pro.

Should you use the Soundcore app with the AeroFit Pro?

The Soundcore app gives you access to preset or customizable EQ options.

We recommend downloading the Soundcore app to utilize the AeroFit Pro earbuds fully. It provides battery life info for both the earbuds and the charging case, access to the EQ section, and the ability to modify some of the default control settings.

How do the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro connect?

The AeroFit Pro and it's accessories.
The optional neckband can easily be attached for a more secure fit.

The AeroFit Pro’s connect quickly to device via Bluetooth 5.3 and support SBC, AAC, and LDAC codecs.

Pairing the Soundcore AeroFit Pro over Bluetooth is straightforward and outlined as follows

    1. Open the charging case; this will turn on the earbuds.
    2. Open the Bluetooth menu on your device and scan for new devices.
    3. Select the AeroFit Pro
    4. Download the Soundcore app for further sound control and the ability to customize your physical controls.

How long does the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro battery last?

In our standard test, designed to emulate real-world use, the Soundcore AeroFit Pro lasted 17 hours and 25 minutes. Almost three and a half hours over the advertised 14 hours! Anker states you can recharge the earbuds roughly 2.3 times with a fully charged case.

Anker states that a quick 10-minute charge will give you 5.5 hours of playback time.

How well do the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro block out noise?

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The Soundcore AeroFit Pro does not block out any noise, which, as discussed, is the goal of the open-ear design. By not having a seal over or in the ear canal, outside noise can enter your eardrums uninterrupted to keep your awareness levels up.

It’s essential to watch your volume levels with the open-ear design. If your surroundings get noisy, you may be tempted to turn up your volume to compensate, but as you may already know, this always comes with the risk of noise-induced hearing loss.

How do the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro sound?

Multi-Dimensional Audio Quality Scores (MDAQS)

The chart below is a visual representation of how the sound of the Soundcore AeroFit Pro was assessed by the Multi-Dimensional Audio Quality Score algorithm from HEAD acoustics.

Timbre (MOS-T) represents the headphones’ spectral properties (how faithfully they reproduce the frequency spectrum) and temporal resolution (timing).

Distortion (MOS-D) represents non-linearities and added noise: higher scores mean cleaner reproduction.

Immersiveness (MOS-I) represents perceived source width and positioning: how well virtual sound sources are defined in three-dimensional space.

See here for a detailed explanation of what MDAQS is, how it works, and how it was developed.

Reviewer’s notes

Since the open-ear unsealed fit lets your surrounding environment compete with your music, the first thing to note about the AeroFit Pro is that how they sound relies significantly on where you’re listening and what’s happening around you.

You’re offered four different EQ presets in the Soundcore app, but it quickly became apparent the stock “Soundcore Signature” is the most usable setting. However, it still doesn’t provide quite enough treble for my taste.

Panama by Van Halen is a classic high-energy track that will get you moving. Alex Van Halen’s constant pulse of the kick drum can be heard alongside traffic and city noise, but it feels held back. The midrange “bite” of Eddie’s distorted guitar cuts through the mix nicely and remains the most prominent instrument in the track, but there is a lack of presence in the treble with the default preset. This results in a fairly lifeless-sounding vocal performance from David Lee Roth rather than his usual animated self. Reverberated elements, including the harmonized backup vocals, also suffer. Much of the natural decay in the mix isn’t audible, and the expected “shimmer” is missing or suppressed.

With the treble booster, podcast, and volume booster presets, you’re given the option to tweak the preset EQ further, but the customizable EQ can’t seem to deliver the bass frequencies provided by the Soundcore signature EQ, making all three “shrill” sounding and unusable.

Keeping up my pace, Nightrain by Guns N’ Roses kicks in. Unfortunately, it falls flat pretty fast. While Appetite for Destruction didn’t win any awards for its production, the treble deficiencies of the AeroFit Pro, even with the only decent EQ preset, proved detrimental to this track, too. Steven Adler’s famous cowbell intro sounds muffled, and the crash cymbal accents are almost non-existent. Axl’s vocal reverb takes a hit, too. Slash and Izzy’s guitars still have decent clarity and left-right separation, so it’s apparent that the mid frequencies are the AeroFit Pro’s only strength.

Overall, I found the AeroFit Pro earbuds to sound okay at best and could benefit from more powerful and cohesive EQ options. There are sonic trade-offs you need to consider when using open-ear headphones. All that being said when listening at a reasonable volume outside, I could still hear approaching vehicles and the conversations of people passing.

Lastly, for some reason the AeroFit Pro, a set of earbuds designed for running outdoors, also offer a spatial audio feature. You could use these headphones in a pinch to watch a movie or TV show and use this feature, but engaging it made my music sound like it was coming from a metallic tube flying through outer space and is not recommended.

Objective measurements

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Compared to our headphone preference curve, the AeroFit Pro’s frequency response is severely compromised in all but a narrow section of the midrange. This is the reality of the open-ear design. You need to have reasonable expectations if you’re new to this style of earbuds; they’re designed with a single purpose in mind. This means that most people won’t get these as their only set of headphones; you’ll need a second pair with active noise canceling (ANC) for travel and commuting.

Can you use the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro for phone calls?

You can use the Soundcore AeroFit Pro to take phone calls. You get a usable performance in ideal conditions, but the quality does degrade on a busy street or in windy conditions. Be prepared to keep your conversations short if you like to phone chat with your friends while on your run.

Microphone Frequency Response

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Take a listen to our standardized microphone demos below:

Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro microphone demo (Ideal conditions):

 

How does the microphone sound to you?

48 votes

Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro microphone demo (Office conditions):

Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro microphone demo (Street conditions):

Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro microphone demo (Windy conditions):

Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro microphone demo (Reverberant space):

Should you buy the Soundcore AeroFit Pro?

Top view of an open AeroFit Pro charging case.
Dave Carr / SoundGuys
The AeroFit Pro features an IPX5 protection rating.

If you’re an outdoor cardio enthusiast who prioritizes awareness and safety, the Soundcore AeroFit Pro is for you. The secure fit, long battery life, IPX5 protection rating, and charging case are all great features, and the open-ear design allows you to hear a cyclist’s bell or an approaching vehicle from a side street. If you want an immersive listening experience with all the production details for your workouts, you’ll want to stick with some traditional earbuds.

Anker Soundcore AeroFit ProAnker Soundcore AeroFit Pro
Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro
Secure fit • IPX5 protection rating • Allow you to maintain awareness naturally
MSRP: $169.99
Safety first, sound quality second.
The Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro open-ear earbuds are designed with outdoor athletes in mind. The purpose of an open-ear design is to keep you aware of your surroundings while listening to music and exercising in busy environments. While the earbuds accomplish precisely this, it's important to remember the design prioritizes letting the outside world in over a full and immersive listening experience.
See price at Amazon
Soundcore AeroFit Pro

What should you get instead of the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro?

A hand holds the Shokz OpenFit with the case out of focus in the background.
Harley Maranan / SoundGuys
The Shokz OpenFit are great for outdoor exercise.

The Shokz OpenFit $179 at Amazon is another option when it comes to open-ear true wireless earbuds. They offer most of the same benefits and features like a companion app with EQ options, and even boast an IPX54 protection rating, however you will take a hit when it comes to battery life. The Shokz OpenFit only offer 7 hours of playback time, compared to the 17 hours from the AeroFit Pro.

Also consider the Sony LinkBuds WF-L900 $178 at Amazon, the donut-shaped earbuds we found to be very comfortable, and with the right ear fin, very secure. The sound quality is okay in the right environment, though it’s compromised in the same ways as the Anker Soundcore AeroFit Pro.

The Aftershokz Aeropex bone conduction headphones rest on a leaf font where the vein splits.
Lily Katz / SoundGuys
It's hard to tell when I've properly pressed the multifunction button on the left ear piece because it's nearly flush with the headset.

You may also want to look into bone-conduction headphones. The Shokz OpenRun ($129 at Amazon) are currently the best set of bone conduction headphones for most people, and they’re a rebrand of the popular AfterShokz Aeropex. Unfortunately, you have to deal with the company’s proprietary two-pin charging connector, but you get Bluetooth 5.1, 8th-gen bone conduction technology, and fast charging.

Frequently asked questions

With an IPX5 protection rating, the AeroFit Pro are water-resistant and sweatproof, but not fully submersible.

No, the AeroFit Pro is an “open-ear” set of earbuds.

Yes, the AeroFit Pro can connect to either device via Bluetooth.

Yes, the AeroFit Pro has a microphone for taking calls.

No, the AeroFit Pro do not offer any noise canceling features.

The AeroFit Pro charge while stored in the charging case, but the case itself charges via USB-C.

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