The OnePlus Buds Z can be considered as a very successful pair of earbuds due to its popularity and value for money, but according to the users, there still was some room for improvements. With that in mind, OnePlus has released the successor to the OnePlus Buds Z, the Oneplus Buds Z2. In this article, we’ll talk about the notable differences between these earbuds and if an upgrade to the Z2 is worth it. So, without further ado, let’s get started!
When you’re talking about good value for money in a pair of tws earbuds, OnePlus takes a significant position in the conversation. OnePlus Buds Z is a clear example of that statement, considering its ease of use, good value for money and overall appeal. On the other hand, the Z2 was released on 13th October 2021 and acted as a direct successor of the buds Z, improving them in many ways while maintaining the same level of value.
In terms of visuals, the Buds Z shares a lot of similarities with its successor, the Z2. Both of these earbuds are similar in terms of looks and the fit, where they sit comfortably in your ears without any ear fatigue, encouraging prolonged use. Further enhancing that element are the 3 different sized silicone tips that come with the earbuds.
Both models have strong IP55 water resistance, making it convenient to use them while engaging in rigorous physical activities and casual walks in the rain. In addition to that, the case of the Z2 is IPX4 water-resistant as well, giving it bonus points for protection and longevity.
The differentiating factor in the buds Z is something we don’t often see, which is an NFC feature that plays a big role in making the Bluetooth 5.0 wireless connectivity easier. The case for the buds Z also comes with a small and separate button for pairing and unpairing, making connections something of a child’s plaything, although the Z2 comes with an upgraded Bluetooth 5.2 feature.
10mm audio drivers do a decent job of making sounds appear vibrant and bass-heavy, which might be a downer to some users when they prefer calm, acoustic music, whereas the larger 11mm driver on the Z2 further enhances the audio profile and has a noticeably loud and prominent sound with clear and crisp highs with punchy, thumping but at the same time not too overwhelming bass.
The battery life is pretty average for the buds Z, clocking in at four hours at max and the case can charge the buds from zero to a hundred up to four times, giving you around 20 hours of battery life. On the other side of the spectrum, the Z2 shows another improvement as each individual bud can run for up to seven hours, and the case combined can provide up to 38 hours of the total charge, a significant improvement from its predecessor, the buds Z. Both of these buds have fast charging capabilities, where just 10 minutes of charging will grant you the ability to get around 3 hours of playback on the buds Z and an astonishing 5 hours on the buds Z2.
Now, the buds Z2 comes with an active noise cancellation feature, which a lot of users talked about regarding its predecessor. The mic quality is decent, but nothing out of the ordinary. Considering ANC is one of the main selling points of these earbuds, it’s normal for people to have high expectations in that department. Well, there are layers to it, both good and bad. The good thing is the inclusion of ANC with multiple levels and an added transparency mode. The slightly disappointing news is, the “Max Noise Cancellation” level is really not great as we couldn’t notice any massive differences in audio quality while turning it on.
Another place of complaint in the Z buds was the lack of controls because you could only skip a track forward while double-tapping on either bud, and that was pretty much it. In the Z2 however, you have multiple input options, including the ability to remap your controls using the “HeyMelody” app. They even added a long touch input option, an option that wasn’t even in the Pro earbuds.
Now, are they worth it, and which one should you go for? Well, it’s a matter of perspective. Do you want a pair of earbuds with decent features which won’t burn a hole through your wallet, or do you prefer ANC and elongated battery life? If the idea of having a decent pair of earbuds at a cheap price appeals to you, go for the buds Z. On the other hand, if you’re a bit more on the fancy side and love the finer things in life, such as an ANC, or just simply want more battery life, the latest Z2 will be your go-to earbuds. So that was a comparison of the widely popular OnePlus Buds Z and the latest OnePlus Buds Z2.