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Syncing and audio drift issues affecting some AirPods Pro 2 users, no fix available yet

Updated 3 weeks ago
Published Oct 13th, 2022 8:20AM EDT
Apple AirPods Pro In Case
Image: Christian de Looper for BGR

A month ago, Apple unveiled the new AirPods Pro 2 model during its “Far Out” event. These wireless earbuds offer improved Active Noise Cancelling features, new Find My capabilities, an overall better sound quality, and increased battery life. While reviewers praised this product – including BGR, which we called AirPods Pro 2 have improved in almost every way – some users are now experiencing audio drift and syncing issues with these earbuds.

As found on some Reddit forums (via 9to5Mac) most users are complaining about these two issues, which are likely firmware-related. One of the threads was posted 11 days ago about a drifting issue:

This is my second pair of AirPods Pro 2 and the audio still seems to shift/drift all over the place sometimes it can compress the volume of a song and then randomly raise the volume. Can anyone explain why this is happening? Could it be a software issue or hardware issue?

Then, one of the users raised the possibility that it could be a firmware issue related to ANC:

Seems to be an issue with noise cancelling because spatial audio sounds fine without it. Noise cancelling or AT results in weird shifting of the sound stage and random volume changes in some frequency ranges. Some tracks are impacted far more than other tracks and there seems to be some dependency on external conditions.

Another Reddit thread says AirPods Pro 2 keep losing the sync between them while listening. A user reports:

I’ve had a similar issue with my AirPods Pro 2. I’m using spatial audio and watching YouTube, and for most videos, after an ad plays, the AirPods go out of sync with each other. As if one is slightly lacking behind the other. It sounds like the voice of people in videos are right at my ears instead in the middle of my head like it’s supposed to sound. The only way I’ve been able to combat this is to turn off and back Spatial Audio which seems to re-sycn up the AirPods.

What’s common between these two issues is the fact that even replacing the AirPods Pro 2 with newer models don’t solve these problems. As even iOS 16.1 beta testers are complaining about these issues, it seems more likely that Apple needs to release a firmware update to address these bugs.

Currently, Apple is testing new firmware for AirPods models, but it’s unclear when the company is going to release them to all users.

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José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin American broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.