Two years ago, Nothing launched its first product, the Ear 1, in July, followed by the release of Nothing Ear Stick last year in June. Now, the London-based startup is launching another pair of truly wireless earbuds, the Nothing Ear 2. The earbuds come as an iterative upgrade over the Ear 1, with better specifications and features, some tweaks to the design, a more compact case, and improved battery life.
Nothing Ear 2: What’s New?
Nothing claims it made the case using stronger, pressure-resistant material. The case is IP55 rated, and Ear 2 are IP54 rated compared to the IPX4 rating of its predecessor. Another major upgrade is in the codecs department. The Ear 2 supports LHDC 5.0, a significant upgrade over AAC and SBC only support you get with the Ear 1. LHDC 5.0 offers a frequency transmission of up to 24-bit/192kHz hi-res audio at up to 1Mbps. However, like its predecessor, the latest TWS doesn’t support aptX or LDAC codecs.
Furthermore, the Ear 2 comes with Bluetooth 5.4 support compared to the Ear 1’s Bluetooth 5.2. The earbuds now support multi-point connections, allowing you to connect the gear with two devices simultaneously. Nothing upgraded the active noise-cancelation (ANC) with the Ear 2. It has a new Adaptive Mode that adjusts ANC automatically according to your surroundings. It runs a beep test in your ear canal to customize the sound to suit your specific ear canal shape.
With the Ear 2, you can control the playback by squeezing the steams instead of tapping on them. You can customize the controls in the Nothing X app. The app now offers more refined and automatic equalizer controls. It allows you to create a Personal Sound Profile to adjust the audio levels as you like.
Despite sharing the same 11.6mm dynamic driver and ANC up to 40db, the Ear 2 offers less battery life than the Ear 1 when ANC is on. The Ear 1 offers up to 5 hours of listing with ANC on, while the Ear 2 gives you up to 4 hours of battery life with ANC. Disabling ANC will give you up to 6.3 hours of listening. With the case, you can get up to 22.5 hours of battery life with ANC on and up to 36 hours with ANC off. Nothing clams 10 minutes of charging will offer up to eight hours of music playback.
Price and Availability
Starting March 22, the buds are exclusively available on Nothing’s official website, retailing at $149, significantly higher than Ear 1’s $99 launch price. They only come in one shade: white. The Ear 2 will be sold via third-party retail partners starting March 28.