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SuperEQ’s Q2 Pro is a pair of wireless earbuds with active noise cancelling. They have similar features to noise cancelling earbuds made by the likes of Apple, Sony and Bose, but for a fraction of the price. How do they stack up for dance music listening?

Construction And Features

The Q2 Pro box contains the wireless earbuds, a charging case, a short USB charging cable, three sets of silicon eartips and a tiny but helpful user guide. The eartips come in different sizes to get the best fit for your ears. They push into the ear canal, helping with isolation from outside sounds. If you have small ears, even the smallest option could be a bit on the tight side. 

The charging case is made of tough plastic. It’s small enough to fit into a pocket. It charges up via a USB-C connection. The earbuds recharge when placed inside even when it’s not connected to USB. This means you can keep them topped up on the move, a bit like a power brick for a phone. It’s a handy solution and works well.

During the review we ran the Q2s for around ten hours, putting them in the charging case when not in use. We had no problems with battery life. The case has three LEDs to show the charge level and indicate charging. The supplied charging cable is only 20cm, which is a bit restrictive. But it could easily be replaced if required.

Bluetooth pairing with an iPhone was fast and painless. Once paired the connection stayed solid. The Q2 Pro has a noise-canceling mode that can be turned on to reduce background noise. It also has a transparency mode which does the opposite, amplifying your surroundings. It’s designed for moments such as crossing roads or if you need to speak with someone. There is also a mic built-in that can be used for phone calls.

The earbuds are operated with a touch sensor on each side. You simply touch the outer surface of the earbud with a fingertip. That might seem easy enough, but the range of functions is so wide, there is a lot to remember – maybe too much. Different numbers of taps are used to play / pause, skip tracks, activate a voice assistant such as Siri, and answer phone calls. Longer presses are used for power, and to turn on noise cancelling and transparency.

In practice all these button operations were too much to get our heads around in the review period. We used the touch controls mainly to activate noise cancelling. The iPhone interface proved better for things like track skips and dealing with phone calls.

Sound Quality On The SuperEQ Q2 Pro

The Q2 Pro sound immediately struck us as somewhat bass heavy. It’s not overbearing on most tracks, but certainly noticeable. If you like a bit of extra boom in your kicks and basslines, these earbuds might be ideal. If you prefer a more neutral and restrained low end, you might find them a bit too much.

The top end is clear and detailed, with the mids slightly recessed. This makes for a classic ‘smile’ curve frequency profile, with lows and highs pushed forwards and a scooped mid-range. The ear is most sensitive to mid-range, so de-emphasising that area reduces harshness. The resulting sound is enjoyable and easy to listen to, albeit at the expense of fidelity. For general purpose dance music listening, we found the Q2 Pros worked well across a variety of styles.

A few tracks showed up how this sort of frequency profile can occasionally cause problems. ‘Bent’ by Barker has heavy synthesized kicks, a sub line, and a growling glissando bass all woven into the low end. It’s beautifully mixed and mastered, and on more balanced cans sounds great. But on the Q2 Pros, with this particular track the boosted bass made these sounds boomy. With the bass boost and the scooped mids, at points the track was swamped with low end. It would be nice to have an option to turn the bass boost off, or set the Q2 Pros to a flatter frequency response.

Noise Reduction With The SuperEQ Q2 Pro

On the plus side, the active noise cancellation worked really well. It’s more accurate to think of it as noise reduction rather than complete cancellation. We put it through its paces walking through central Manchester, with heavy traffic and loud construction noise all around.

To really test the limits, we gave Toby Wiltshire’s recent album Shunyata a spin. This is extremely delicate, spacious ambient music. With the Q2 Pros set to normal mode, the urban soundscape almost completely drowned it out. Turning on noise cancellation was a revelation however. The compositions became audible, with the city sound reduced to a gentle background swishing. In practice, the noise cancelling works somewhat like a high pass filter on the surrounding environment. The high end of the background noise remains audible, which helps with orientation, but the bass and mids no longer occlude the music.

Put simply, the noise cancellation enables listening to music in situations where it would be impossible with normal headphones. Other noise cancelling models might do the same, but what marks out the SuperEQ Q2 Pro is their inexpensive price.

Position in the market

Looking at earbuds with similar features to the SuperEQ Q2 Pro, Apple’s Airpods Pro are an obvious contender. They’re known for solid performance, but cost around four times as much. Sony, Bose and Sennheiser all make good quality wireless noise cancelling earbuds, but again they tend to be priced towards the £200 mark.

Looking at the cheaper end of the market, the Panasonic RZ-S500W are well-regarded and currently available for under £100. That’s still around twice the cost of the Q2 Pros however. The Earfun Air Pro offers comparable features and can be had for around £70, so they would be worth considering as an alternative.

In summary, the SuperEQ Q2 Pro offers a lot for the money. The noise reduction in particular is impressive for the price. If you’re looking for an inexpensive set of wireless earbuds, and like a bass-heavy sound, these should be on your shortlist.

The Verdict

Price: $69.99

Sound
Build
Versatility
Value
Ease of Use
Overall

The Final Word

Noise reducing wireless earbuds for a bargain price.

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Author Michael Gallagher
4th January, 2022

Gear/Software is sponsored by

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Sonarworks is loved and used by over 100’000 recording studios worldwide including many Grammy Award-winning engineers recording A-list stars (like Lady Gaga, Madonna, Rihanna, Adele, Coldplay, and more) and has also been used in Oscar-winning movies, award-winning games, TV shows, and global events.

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