It should come as no surprise that Anker, the company you probably associate with battery packs, is now one of the better budget audio brands. In the last few years, the company has consistently offered great value with products like its Flare line of Bluetooth speakers and Liberty line of true wireless earbuds. With the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro, the company doesn’t just offer a good value, it also tries to be the best in its class. So how does it hold up?
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Editor’s note: this Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro review was updated on September 29, 2021, to update the alternatives section with the Nothing Ear 1 and Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 Pro, and to expand up on technical information and wording.
Who should get the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro?
- Anyone who prioritizes sound and will appreciate the consumer-friendly bass bump from these earphones.
- People who want premium earbuds at a reasonable price can stretch their dollar on these $149USD earbuds. While for many people, this isn’t exactly cheap, it remains much more affordable than something like the AirPods Pro or Sony WF-1000XM4 which dominate the true wireless conversation.
What’s it like to use the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro?
I know you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but a first impression goes a long way—especially when it comes to something like true wireless earbuds. The charging case makes a great first impression even with its slightly odd shape and large footprint. The door’s sliding mechanism is so smooth that I often fidget with it for fun. The case is made of soft plastic that looks like it should be a fingerprint magnet but isn’t.
Magnets hold earbuds in place, and dropping the earbud in the general vicinity of where it should be will snap it into place. The Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro also fits nicely in my ears, whether I was walking around or just sitting at my desk thanks to the plethora of tips Anker includes. You should take the time to figure out which ones fit you best because that can have a huge impact on sound quality.
If you were hoping for a pair of true wireless earbuds for the gym, then you’ll be happy to hear these have an IPX4 rating and can withstand about all the sweat you pour onto them. The Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro rocks a custom balanced armature driver and 11mm dynamic driver, and the earbud housings are fairly large to accommodate this arrangement. The buttons on top of each earbud offer tactile feedback and are easy to find without much thought.
If you wanted stylish true wireless earbuds, however, these aren’t it. They’re not as out there as something like the AirPods but they’re also not minimal. They remind me more of the Sony WF-1000XM3 with a bigger logo font. These are positioned as a pair of daily earbuds, so a more discreet and unobtrusive would have been nice.
Related: Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 review
How do you control the earbuds?
A single tap on either button will pause/play music, or answer phone calls, while a double-tap either returns to the previous song (left bud) or skips to the next song (right bud). Holding down the right button increases the volume, while holding down the left one will decrease the volume.
You need to download the Soundcore app to customize the controls.
You can customize the buttons and also reroute them to access the voice assistant on your phone instead once you download the Soundcore app. The app is available on both Android and iOS and offers an equalizer setting. Soundcore offers a hearing test to create a custom sound profile with its HearID software.
Does the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro stay connected?
The Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro gets a lot of things right in the tech department and uses Bluetooth 5.0. On top of that, it supports both AAC and aptX, so whether you’re on Android or iOS, lip-sync issues should be minimal when watching videos on your phone or tablet.
Pairing the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro is very easy—place the earbuds in the charging case and close the lid so the earbuds power off. Then, open the lid but don’t remove the earbuds. There should be a white flashing LED that indicates the buds have entered pairing mode and you can find them in your device’s Bluetooth settings. Once paired to the right earbud, it will then pair to the left earbud and then you can take the earbuds out of the case and use them normally.
How’s the battery life of the Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro?
Anker claims that the Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro lasts 8 hours with the charging case providing an extra three charges. In our testing, we got 8 hours, 35 minutes which is slightly better than Anker’s claim. The case also has wireless charging so you can place it on any Qi wireless charging mat and juice it up to full.
Is the Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro good for phone calls?
While the mic is good enough to answer a personal call, it’s not good enough for important conference calls as the quality is a little hit or miss. While these do have four noise cancelling microphones, the frequency drops off pretty hard at around 250Hz. In practice, this means that the deeper notes of your voice won’t be as loud, which is good for speech intelligibility. However, it will make you sound a bit weird to the person on the other end—just like you would on any phone call.
Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro microphone demo:
As of July 1, 2021, 461 readers have rated the above mic sample as somewhere between “okay” and “good.” This is a pretty typical result for true wireless earbuds, and at the upper-middling end of what you should expect to get out of any products of this type.
Does the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro block out background noise?
The Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro is not a pair of active noise cancelling (ANC) true wireless earbuds, so low and midrange frequency sounds aren’t really blocked out. Higher frequencies (above 1kHz) are quieted a bit but not consistently. These earbuds quiet incidental sounds like nearby chatter and the clang and ding of dishware in your favorite coffee shop, but it can’t compare to a good set of noise cancelling earphones or headphones.
How does the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro sound?
The Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro doesn’t have the most accurate frequency response, but the bass bump will please most listeners who enjoy a bit of oomph in their music. Those who want a more neutral frequency response that accurately represents the bass and treble can EQ the sound in the mobile app.
Lows, mids, and highs
This can be heard throughout the song Get By by Talib Kweli where the bassline is just overpowering right from the beginning of the song. All throughout the verse, you can hear the volume of the vocals dip a little as the bass gets particularly loud. The song Tremors by SOHN has plenty of bass in it too, but vocals come across clearly still, even after the heavy synths enter (0:45).
Highs are also decent considering these are a pair of true wireless earbuds, but you can see the unique driver architecture flexing a bit. Shakers and hi-hats throughout the song Young Folks by Peter Bjorn and John are clear and present without sounding too loud.
Should you buy the Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro?
If you’re after good-sounding true wireless earbuds and that’s it, then this is a good buy. The sweat-resistance, sound quality, and ease of use make it a solid choice even if it’s a bit bulky. The charging case is a joy to use and the sliding mechanism makes it one of my favorite designs to date. The connection strength is solid and I experience minimal skips or hiccups.
Basically, if you want a pair of true wireless earbuds for everyday listening this should be on your shortlist.
What should you get instead of the Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro?
If you’re interested in an alternative set of earbuds, take a look at the Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus. For roughly two-thirds of the price, it has a frequency response that appeals to consumers and fits comfortably in most ears. These buds also support Samsung’s Scalable Codec for high-quality audio streaming—perfect for people who already use a Samsung Galaxy device as their daily driver.
If you want noise cancelling, consider the Amazon Echo Buds (2nd Gen); this has ANC that competes with the AirPods Pro. Another great pick: the Nothing Ear 1 is a well designed alternative here too, so long as you don’t mind the AirPods-like stems. Nothing includes noise cancelling, an IPX4 rating, and a wireless USB-C charging case with the Ear 1, and all for $99 USD.
For those who enjoy the Anker brand, consider the more affordable Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 Pro. While the name is confusingly similar to the Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro, the Air variant has a completely different stemmed design and has ANC.
Frequently Asked Questions
It takes about 1.5 hours to fully charge the earbuds themselves. On the other hand, the case will require 2 hours to fully charge, and will provide the earbuds with enough power for three charging cycles.
No, these ear buds do not support fast charging.
The ear tips of the Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro are made of silicon, which is typical of budget true wireless earbuds.
The Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro doesn't have active noise cancelling, which isn't surprising considering the costs associated with ANC integration. If a pair of ANC true-wireless earbuds is on the top of your priority list, and if you're willing to fork up some extra cash, check out our list of the best noise cancelling earbuds.