Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro review: Great buds that cost too much

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First-party earbuds are all the range. Xiaomi has built a number of its own first-party earbuds now, and the company is now on its fourth generation. The Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro are built to deliver a premium listening experience and a comfortable fit, and as such, they come at a decently high price.

At £240 or €240, there’s a ton of competition, meaning that the earbuds have to beat out the likes of the new Nothing Ear (2) earbuds, options from Samsung and Sony, and yes, the AirPods Pro.

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How well do they compete? I’ve been using the Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro to find out.

Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro

Pros

  • Solid design

  • Comfortable fit

  • Good feature set

  • Easy to control

Cons

  • Could use more high extension

  • Expensive

Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro design

The Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro are generally well-designed and highly portable. They have a stem design like the AirPods, and have interchangeable ear tips for a more secure fit.

I really like the overall look. I’m reviewing a chrome model, however, the buds are also available in black and gold, among other colors that seem to vary by region.

Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro Design
Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro Design

The earbuds have squeeze controls, like the AirPods, which is great to see more companies copying Apple here. These controls allow you to control playback, but unfortunately, you can’t control volume — you’ll have to reach for your device for that.

The charging case looks great too. It’s very portable, which is great to see, and even smaller than the already portable AirPods Pro. It features a USB-C port for charging found on the bottom of the charging case, and opens up at the front, revealing the buds that sit magnetically in the case. The charging case also supports Qi wireless charging — a necessity, especially at this price.

Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro features and battery

The real promise of first-party earbuds has to do with the features on offer, and thankfully these earbuds aren’t light on features. The earbuds work with the Xiaomi Earbuds App, and that’s how you’ll unlock the range of features on offer here.

Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro In Case
Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro In Case

For starters, the Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro support noise cancellation, and it’s pretty good. There are a hefty six noise cancellation levels here, so you can really dial in the amount of ANC that works for you. There are also a few different levels of transparency mode, which also works decently — though it’s not as impressive as on the AirPods, for example.

From the app, you can also tweak the controls, see the battery life, and so on. Unfortunately, there is one major feature missing — there’s no way to tweak the EQ. This is an important feature that some companies have been missing, including Apple, and I wish it was more common. It’s one of the things I love most about the Nothing Ear (2) earbuds.

Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro comfort

The Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro offer a very comfortable fit. The earbuds are designed in a way that they should fit snugly in most ears, without feeling too big or intrusive, plus they fit securely enough to remain in your ears even with moderate movement.

Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro Comfort
Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro Comfort

While companies are clearly taking design cues from Apple, I’m glad it’s leading to more earbuds offering a comfortable and secure fit.

Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro sound

Thankfully, the Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro earbuds offer solid audio quality, and while I did miss the lack of EQ, most will be perfectly happy with what’s on offer here.

For starters, the bass response is quite strong. In general, the low frequencies were able to deliver powerful kick drums and smooth bass guitars. Really, the low frequency response was one of the highlights of the audio quality here.

Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro Port
Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro Port

The mids were relatively well-tuned, however, there was a somewhat boosted high mid response, which I didn’t love. It wasn’t terrible, by any means, and most won’t even notice it.

The highs are a little muted. There’s some detail and clarity, however, I would have liked to see better high-end extension and a little more clarity overall.

Generally, the Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro offer a well-tuned frequency response, and while a little better high-end response would have been nice, most will be able to look past that.

Conclusions

The Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro earbuds are a solid option. They look great, fit comfortably, and offer a good audio quality overall. But they’re also relatively expensive, and go up against tough competition.

The competition

The biggest competition right now comes from the Nothing Ear (2) earbuds, which are cheaper, and, frankly, better. The Nothing Ear (2) earbuds are among the best options, and come at only $150. Apple users should also consider the Apple AirPods Pro, thanks to their excellent automatic switching tech and seamless integration with Apple devices.

Should I buy the Xiaomi Buds 4 Pro?

No. You should buy the Nothing Ear (2) earbuds or AirPods Pro instead.

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