I have been doing sports almost every day for a long time. I mostly run. If I use the treadmill, I often watch series, but I am also outside a lot and listen to music accordingly. My companions: smartphone and headphones. I used the AirPods Pro or the Powerbeats Pro in the classic way, but now I am not completely wireless, because the new Powerbeats 4 are wired together.
They have an improved battery life of up to 15 hours and are now sweat and water resistant according to IPX4, just as the Powerbeats Pro are. The new Powerbeats 4 also uses the new H1 chip, which can also be found in the AirPods Pro. If you want to compare the Powerbeats 4 and the Powerbeats Pro apart from the wiring, then of course you also get the price. The Powerbeats Pro cost 249 euros at the start, the wired Powerbeats 4 just cost 100 euros less. For this you have one cable between the headphones more and one charging case less. Did that bother me? Under no circumstance.
The ear hooks of the Powerbeats 4 are tight, but flexible enough to adapt to the ear. I would describe the wearing comfort over several hours as very good, I had no problems with aching ears or anything. The listeners just sit well and, in my opinion, insulate the ear canal well even in the mode without music. However, what is different compared to the Pro: plugging in the handset, because the cable behind the ear ensures a few more handles of fumbling, which is no longer the case with completely wireless solutions.
Did the cable rustle while running? No, I couldn’t tell. What you notice is that under certain circumstances it can “pull” something by the ear if you look too far left or right. For example, if I had a shirt on and was sweaty after a few kilometers, it could be that the cable was sticking to the back of the neck. Not so difficult that you can use it to pull a receiver out of your ear, but you just notice it. Is not annoying, but still wants to know it mentioned.
The operation of the Powerbeats 4 can of course be done via a smartphone, but especially during training you will hardly have it in your hand. Therefore – as with the AirPods Pro from Apple or the Powerbeats Pro – Siri can be commanded to do something with the H1 chip, alternatively and / or when using an Android smartphone, the handset can be operated via buttons on the surface. I even found it more practical in sports. Because instead of regulating things via language – which may be difficult if you pant completely – you just use the buttons. Pause, skip, play – or change the volume. Everything is possible.
So if you want to talk to Siri little, you will find the linchpin of the Powerbeats in the buttons. In the test during sports and at the desk, the Powerbeats cut a good figure in terms of battery. You specify up to 15 hours, which you can achieve if you don’t listen at the highest volume level all the time. At least you can charge the Powerbeats quickly – this is done via Lightning (adapter included) and there are actually advantages over the box of the Powerbeats Pro. I have heard from some that a handset was not loaded. Can not happen with the wired, they are always charged together. In conclusion, of course, the following applies: The battery life depends on the device settings, the environment, usage and many other factors.
Very important: the sound and also the shielding. In addition to the Powerbeats Pro, I’ll also bring the AirPods Pro into the race. These are extremely good all-rounders for the whole day. With ANC you may have advantages on the go because you are less aware of the surroundings. In my case it was the case that the AirPods Pro did a better job than the power beats – headword noise – when headwinds. But: In terms of stamina, the Powerbeats 4 are ahead of the two competitors.
And when it comes to sound? Right, really good. Like the Powerbeats Pro, which I consider to be the best Beats headphones of this design to date. Every genre comes through well and clearly. Correctly placed, broad stage – after I recently tested a few Sennheiser over-ear, the Powerbeats 4 were a real treat. Because I was asked recently: I would classify both Powerbeats Pro and the Powerbeats 4 tested here using the Apple AirPods Pro. To phone? You can, of course. I heard everything well, but would not use the Powerbeats 4 mics if I were a frequent caller in the business. There are better solutions – but for me privately the quality is thick enough (although with the microphones my conversation partners have to get along).
A conclusion for me: To be honest, I think they are even better than the wireless Powerbeats Pro. Why? Quite simply: the price. If you do not have any stress with the cable and do not need the box, simply put the 100 euros to the side or for something else. I really couldn’t tell the difference in sound quality. I am very impressed with the Powerbeats 4, in all volumes and genres – and I have pointed ears and am very difficult to entertain with something like this.