I will go through a list of good and bad as I am short on time today-
A super quick setup process and of course a lovely unboxing experience.
Improved sound over the previous AirPods.
Much better design and they actually look perfectly normal now.
A better fit thanks to the buds that are included.
Perfect sound sync for videos on YouTube etc. This is a problem for the majority of wireless buds that I have used.
The sound is still not what you would expect from earbuds costing £250. For example, my Jaybird Tarahs sound better and they are £70. They can tend to sound processed at times and especially at the treble end.
The fit test is an odd one. I tested the small, medium and large earbuds and they test said ‘good fit’ every time. It may just be my ears, but it was a strange result.
The transparency is not as obvious as I have experienced on competing wireless buds. More testing needed I suspect, but I did notice that putting them in my ears with noise isolation on appears to block out all sounds- it’s quite spooky.
There is sound leakage which to me is the biggest flaw. So much of the competition does this much better (Jaybird again) and loud music from these will be noticeable by others.
The buttons don’t always seem to work for me. At times I can press to stop a song and it works, but pressing again to play the song again only seems to work 60-70% of the time.
Day one conclusion-
The clever features such as the two microphones, adaptive sound etc don’t seem to bring many real world benefits to the experience. They are clever, but they are not jumping out from the marketing material in a way that wows me.
These are indeed the best AirPods yet and they are worthy, but at £250 they are expensive and after having tried many different sets over the past 2 years I don’t believe these to compete in terms of sound quality and noise isolation. They win in terms of connectivity, ease of use and sheer practicality, and arguably in how they look now, but audio quality and noise cancellation still have some way to go. And these 2 features are the most important in my opinion.