In the test: Soundcore Life P3 - wireless in-ear headphones with ANC

In the test: Soundcore Life P3 vs. AirPods Pro

The headphone models that the Anker brand Soundcore sent me for testing have never been a letdown in terms of operation and sound quality. So it's not surprising that the brand new Soundcore Life P3 also convince with a solid sound. But let's start from the beginning ...

Transparency notice

The Soundcore Life P3 were given to me free of charge, but this did not affect my review. And as much as I like to take a critical look at products - there isn't much to complain about with the Soundcore Life P3.

Anker sent me the Soundcore Life P3. Read here how they fare in my test report (Photos: Sir Apfelot).

Anker sent me the Soundcore Life P3. Read here how they fare in my test report (Photos: Sir Apfelot).

Technical data of the True Wireless Life P3

The technical data already show that the Life P3 are a further development of the Life P2. Unfortunately, I couldn't hear them against each other to compare the sound quality as I don't have a Life P2.

But here is a brief overview of how the Soundcore Life P3 fares in relation to the “specs” compared to the P2.

Soundcore modelLife P2Life P3
Audio driver6mm graph driver11mm composite driver
ANC-Multi-mode
Number of microphones46
Battery life7: 40h7: 35h
Wireless charging-ja
App support-ja
color selection35
FeaturesBassUpBassUp
Custom EQ
Sleep mode
Gaming mode
Search option
Priceapprox. 40 EURapprox. 80 EUR

There is still a lot of interesting information here, which I was able to learn from the press release on the Soundcore Life P3:

  • Multi-mode ANC with transport, indoor and outdoor settings
  • two transparency modes; one enhances voices and suppresses noise
  • 7 hours battery (6h with ANC at 60% volume)
  • Charging via USB Type C or Qi charging (also MagSafe)
  • Anker Fast Charging: Charge for 10 minutes = 2 hours of playtime
  • high call quality thanks to 6-microphone noise reduction with optimization of voices and minimization of background noise
  • Operation: touch-sensitive area
  • Programmable control: yes
  • Siri compatible: yes
  • Bluetooth version: 5.0
  • Multi-point pairing: no
  • Waterproof class: IPX5 (protection against water jets; see IP protection classes)
  • Available in five colors: midnight black, ocean blue, coral pink, champagne white, sky blue
  • Earbud size: 38mm x 22mm x 24mm
  • Case size: 61mm x 53mm x 31mm
  • Weight of one earbud: 4,93 g
  • Weight of the shop box: 49,8 g
  • References: Amazon (approx. 80 EUR)
Sufficient silicone plugs are included in the scope of delivery of the Soundcore Life P3 to serve all ear sizes.

Sufficient silicone plugs are included in the scope of delivery of the Soundcore Life P3 to serve all ear sizes.

Workmanship and design of the Life P3

I think the look of the True Wireless headphones from Soundcore is successful. The charging case is a little flattering to the touch and is hardly noticeable in your pocket, while the design of the earphones is simple and elegant.

I received the dark blue color variant, but there are many more colors as you can see in the photo below.

The new Soundcore Life P3 headphones with ANC and Bluetooth 5.0 were introduced a few weeks ago. Currently you can still get them with a discount at Soundcore.

The new Soundcore Life P3 headphones with ANC and Bluetooth 5.0 were introduced a few weeks ago. Currently you can still get them with a discount at Soundcore.

The earbuds can be easily removed from the charging box and simply reinserted, so that you don't have to fumble for a long time until you have them in your hand or in the case.

The processing of the charging case and the earphones is very good. Both feel sturdy and I don't think anything will be damaged by frequent use. The loss of the lid on the charging case doesn't seem rickety either.

Here you can see the Life P3 earphones in the charging case. The plastic bottles are from the protective stickers, which of course have to be peeled off.

Here you can see the Life P3 earphones in the charging case. The plastic bottles are from the protective stickers, which of course have to be peeled off.

Pairing and commissioning the Soundcore Life P3

To access the reset and pairing button, you have to open the lid of the charging case. To pair the headphones, hold down the button in the case for a few seconds.

The earphones should remain in the case during this time. You can tell that the headphones are in pairing mode when the three white LEDs on the front of the charging box flash like a slow running light.

Now you open the Bluetooth settings on the iPhone (or the device of your choice) and find the Soundcore Life P3 at the bottom of the list and can now connect it.

Load the Soundcore app and update the firmware

Once the paring is done, you should go to the app store to download the Soundcore app load. Here you select the Life P3 and in the “Settings” area you will also find the option to update the firmware.

The search for new firmware should be started every now and then, as Soundcore always delivers new features via firmware updates, especially with new device models. For example, with the Life P3, support for Google and Alexa should be submitted later.

The Soundcore app can not only be used to update the firmware. You can also reprogram the operation and set a lot more.

The Soundcore app can not only be used to update the firmware. You can also reprogram the operation and set a lot more.

Own equalizer, sleep mode and even more via the app

The Soundcore app has a few other practical functions in store that definitely enhance the headphones. Here is a small summary of what you can do with the app:

  • A mode is activated via the “Gaming mode” option, which creates a somewhat less stable connection, but for it has significantly less latency. I've tried this and couldn't find any breaks, but it may be that you can't be 15 meters away from the device sending the audio. When gaming, however, you are usually right at the device.
  • The "good sleep" option allows you to compose soundssuch as rain, train travel, wind, campfire, etc. You can put together your own personal mix and let yourself be lulled to sleep with it - with a countdown timer.
  • Under "Control" you can specify which actions 1x tap, 2x tap and hold earphones longer should trigger. A distinction is also made between typing left or right. In this way, changes to the volume or changing of the ANC modes can also be programmed. Very convenient!
  • The "Equalizer" option is allowed the selection of predefined sound settings and also the setting of its own equalizer setup.
  • The "EarTip Test" function determines whether the earphones are properly seated in the ear. A short jingle is played while the microphones listen to see how much of it is audible outside the ear. The app can then make a statement as to whether the earbuds are properly seated.
  • There is also the option “ambient noise”, which allows you to switch between noise suppression, transparency mode and normal. In the transparency mode there is also a setting that allows complete transparency and a voice mode that particularly highlights voices.

The app also comes with a widget that can be set up in the control center of the iPhone and iPad. This widget can then be used to change the active noise suppression and change the mode.

The audio drivers in the SOundcore Life P3 are quite generous with a diameter of 11mm and therefore probably also have the good bass reproduction.

The audio drivers in the SOundcore Life P3 are quite generous with a diameter of 11mm and therefore probably also have the good bass reproduction.

Impressive: a touch control that works

As a rule, I am not particularly enthusiastic when headphones come with touch-sensitive controls, because they often do not work reliably. Especially when you have to use the headphones with wet fingers, there are often problems with the inputs.

In this respect, however, the Soundcore Life P3 surprised me, because even with moistened fingers, all my "commands" were reliably implemented. Only once did Siri not start with a long press on the earphones, but that could also have been due to my iPhone. Otherwise, I could do anything, even if I pressed the earbuds with fingers that were extra wet.

Here you can see the Soundcore Life P3 compared to my AirPods Pro. I retouched all the crumbs and quirks on my AirPods with Photoshop. : D

Here you can see the Soundcore Life P3 compared to my AirPods Pro. I retouched all the crumbs and quirks on my AirPods with Photoshop. : D

The sound test: Soundcore Life P3 vs. AirPods Pro

I always find it extremely difficult to imagine something when describing the sound of headphones. The audio magazines regularly roll over adjectives like crystal clear, booming, full, bread dry and what do I know how high and low frequencies can be described in that way.

I find it much more helpful when you can compare the sound with something you already know. For example with the AirPods Pro. I deliberately did not name the AirPods (without Pro) because their open design means that they cannot technically offer as good a sound as the closed in-ear models. But I consider the AirPods Pro to be a fair "comparison opponent".

I've heard various songs on both headphones and I was surprised every time how different the pieces of music sound. With the Soundcore Life P3, the lower frequency range seems to be much more present, so that you can hear instruments that are literally drowned in the AirPods Pro.

So far I haven't classified the AirPods Pro as bad headphones (and I wouldn't do that now), but they definitely have a poor bass range. From my point of view, the Soundcore Life P3 have a rounder sound, which is also represented in the bass range.

If you don't like that with the Soundcore Life P3, you can use the equalizer in the Soundcore app to "pimp" it in the direction you want, but only real bass fetishists should need more bass. But even that could be stopped.

Incidentally, the difference in classical music was not quite as clear as in pop and rock. This may be due to the fact that the medium and high frequency spectrum dominates most of the pieces in classical music.

The bottom line is that I find the Life P3 more pleasant to listen to music than the AirPods Pro.

Are there any differences between the active noise cancellation of the AirPods Pro and the Soundcore Life P3? Not in my opinion - except for the additional voice mode that the Soundcore headphones offer (photos: Sir Apfelot).

Are there any differences between the active noise cancellation of the AirPods Pro and the Soundcore Life P3? Not in my opinion - except for the additional voice mode that the Soundcore headphones offer (photos: Sir Apfelot).

ANC comparison: AirPods Pro vs Soundcore Life P3

Active noise cancellation (ANC) is a very important feature of these headphones. For this reason, I would like to draw a comparison between the two headphones here as well.

To be honest, my result is relatively unspectacular, because I couldn't find any difference between the Soundcore Life P3 and the AirPods Pro.

Both headphones filter out particularly low and high frequencies, but if someone speaks in front of you, you can still hear it despite activated ANC (if you are not listening to music).

I did not test the special tuning mode, in which the voices are highlighted in the transparency mode.

Conclusion on noise cancellation

Typical noises such as the humming noise when traveling by air, engine noise when traveling by car or bus and also the frequency ranges that are annoying when traveling by train (no, not the children two seats away!) Are largely suppressed.

Compared to the Bose QC35, the Bose does even better than the two in-ear headphones, but that may be due to the different construction (over-ear and in-ear) of the headphones.

The app can also be used to check whether the earplugs are properly seated. I only find that the volume used for testing is a bit too high. I was about to take the earplugs out of my ear.

The app can also be used to check whether the earplugs are properly seated. I only find that the volume used for testing is a bit too high. I was about to take the earplugs out of my ear.

My tip: ANC headphones when mowing and vacuuming the lawn

I always have the Bose QC35 on when vacuuming and mowing the lawn or when working with the lawn trimmer and chainsaw, but since in-ears with the ANC also filter out the "loud and annoying" part of the noise, these are also a great help for that Hearing.

Therefore, I think that both the AirPods Pro and the Soundcore Life P3 or the Bose QC35 are suitable for reducing such noise to a level that allows you to listen to a podcast or music on the side without the headphones at maximum volume to have to regulate.

Soundcore Life P3 as sports headphones - can you jog with them?

A reader recently asked me - when I was writing the review here - whether the Life P3 can also be worn for sports. In particular, he wanted to use it for jogging and I was able to test it for him directly.

So I'm out, put the Soundcore Life P3 in my ears and ran through the garden once. It worked flawlessly and the plugs stayed neatly in place. To find the limit, I did a few more yoga exercises and the headbanger (but not at the same time). That was not an issue either. The Life P3 are 100 percent tight and have not even loosened when you shake your head.

Since they are also protected against water jets in accordance with the IPX5 standard and the touch controls also work with sweaty fingers, you can take them with you to sports without hesitation.

The case of the Soundcore Life P3 can be charged via USB-C as well as via Qi charging - of course also with the MagSafe charging puck.

The case of the Soundcore Life P3 can be charged via USB-C as well as via Qi charging - of course also with the MagSafe charging puck.

What the Soundcore Life P3 can't do ...

The Soundcore Life P3 do not have an H1 chip like the AirPod models have. The consequence of this is that fast switching between different Apple devices is not supported.

They also do not support multipoint Bluetooth pairing. This in turn means that they can only be paired with one device. For example, if you want to switch from the iPhone to the iPad and take the headphones with you, you need to pair again.

To do this, you have to press the button in the case for a few seconds, open the Bluetooth menu and connect the headphones. In my opinion, this is unnecessarily cumbersome and is much more comfortable with the AirPod models.

So if you switch between iPhone, iPad or Mac more often, you will be better off with Apple AirPods or Beats headphones, as both brands have the Apple Hx chip installed.

My conclusion to the Soundcore Life P3: Great!

The Soundcore Life P3 impress with their great sound, good workmanship and many functions, some of which can be controlled via the Soundcore app. Siri support is also a good feature if you are an Apple user.

The Price of around 80 euros is not in the lower price segment, but it is still significantly more attractive than the 170 euros that you currently have to pay for the AirPods Pro.

Only for Apple users who frequently switch between iPhone, iPad and Mac should headphones with the H1 or Hx chip be more interesting - and only AirPods, AirPods Pro, AirPods Max or some Beats models are currently considered.

Otherwise, the Life P3 are my new true wireless recommendation, because I have a headphone model from another manufacturer in the test and it's frightening what you can do wrong. Soundcore has done a really good job here and the options that you get through the app are a nice goodie on top of that.

If you are interested in the Soundcore Life P3, you can find it up to date buy on Amazon. They are listed as of today because they just came out. Here is the corresponding product box:

Raffle

As an alternative to buying a new one, there is also the possibility of winning a copy, which I will be giving away to my newsletter readers. To participate, please sign up here and in one to two weeks you will find out in the newsletter how you can win the Soundcore Life P3.

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The page contains affiliate links / images: Amazon.de

2 comments

  1. Fog says:

    After testing these headphones for a day, all I can say is that I am absolutely satisfied. The sound is great - at least if you haven't had new in-ear headphones for a few years. When I listened to rock, pop and metal, I was just amazed. And I can confirm that the headphones also work very well when doing sports.

    • Jens Kleinholz says:

      Hello fog! Thank you very much for your feedback after your short test. That will certainly help one or the other reader. During the next few days, I'll be taking care of a test of the Soundcore LifeQ35 (over-ear headphones) ... I'm really looking forward to it! : D

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