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Beats Studio Buds Plus, Arriving in May, Get Eye-Catching Transparent Design

A leak on Amazon reveals that the new Studio Buds Plus are reportedly set to ship around May 18 for $170 in three colors, including a new transparent model.

David Carnoy Executive Editor / Reviews
Executive Editor David Carnoy has been a leading member of CNET's Reviews team since 2000. He covers the gamut of gadgets and is a notable reviewer of mobile accessories and portable audio products, including headphones and speakers. He's also an e-reader and e-publishing expert as well as the author of the novels Knife Music, The Big Exit and Lucidity. All the titles are available as Kindle, iBooks, Kobo e-books and audiobooks.
Expertise Headphones, Bluetooth speakers, mobile accessories, Apple, Sony, Bose, e-readers, Amazon, glasses, ski gear, iPhone cases, gaming accessories, sports tech, portable audio, interviews, audiophile gear, PC speakers Credentials
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David Carnoy
2 min read
The Beats Studio Plus will come in a transparent version when they arrive May 18
Enlarge Image
The Beats Studio Plus will come in a transparent version when they arrive May 18

The Beats Plus will be available in white, black and this transparent version, which may prove to be the most popular.

Screenshot by David Carnoy/CNET

Beats' upcoming Studio Plus Buds, an upgraded version of its popular Studio Buds, were leaked back in March when 9to5Mac discovered that support for the earbuds showed up in the iOS 16.4 RC ("release candidate"). 

That leak provided some hazy details about the new buds, but yesterday the Studio Buds Plus reportedly showed up on an Amazon listing page, briefly revealing just about everything you'd want to know about the new buds, which will retail for $170 -- or $20 more than the Studio Buds -- and ship around May 18.

They're billed as having better all-around performance with 1.6x more active noise canceling power and a 2x improved transparency mode (that's the mode that allows ambient sound into the buds so you can here what's going on around you). But the most intriguing thing about the Buds Studio Plus is their new transparent color variant, which goes along with white and black. It also appears that both sound quality and voice-calling performance might be improved.  

The original Studio Buds were designed to appeal to both Apple and Android users, and the new buds are sticking to that approach. The Studio Buds Plus won't be powered by Apple's H1 or H2 chips (the H2 is in the AirPods Pro 2) and will instead use a custom Beats chip.

Before the buds' apparent Amazon listing page was taken offline, 9to5Mac pulled some of the bulleted marketing highlights from the page and noted that they "offer improvements to Android and iPhone features such as automatic device switching, Hey Siri, one-touch pairing, and Find My support." According to those marketing highlights, the new buds support spatial audio for music but not movies since they're missing the spatial audio with head-tracking feature found in the Beats Fit Pro, AirPods 3, AirPods Pro 2 and AirPods Max

Here are a few more details from the Amazon listing page, lightly edited for style and clarity:

  • Beats Studio Buds Plus support spatial audio for immersive music -- delivering a surround sound experience -- that you can take anywhere.
  • Beats' custom acoustic platform delivers rich, immersive sound whether you're listening to music or taking calls.
  • Each bud is equipped with a custom two-layer transducer that flexes to deliver cleaner bass and ultralow distortion.
  • With three larger microphones, new venting and a powerful processor, Beats Studio Buds Plus have up to 1.6x more active noise canceling power and up to 2x improved Transparency.
  • Three larger microphones, powerful ANC and a voice-targeting algorithm precisely filter background noise for crisp, clear call performance.

A representative for Beats had no comment on the purported leak. 

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