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Apple AirPods (2021)
Etymotic ER3XR
See Top Ranked In-Ear Monitors

Apple AirPods (2021) vs Etymotic ER3XR

Analysis:

The Etymotic ER3XR was well-received by reviewers at Android Central, a trustworthy source that performs unbiased hands-on testing. It did great in their "Best Wired Headphones for Galaxy S10 in 2022" roundup - they named it their "With the ER3XR, Etymotic is offering a pair of earbuds with a durable chassis and a wonderfully neutral soundstage. The design may not be to everyone's taste, but if you value a neutral sonic signature over a flashy design, the ER3XR is an excellent option.", which, by itself, suggests that it's a noteworthy product.

As for our analysis of the Apple AirPods (2021) - it has managed to impress reviewers from a large number of highly trusted sources that conduct in-depth hands-on testing, including Laptop Mag, CNET, Tom's Guide, PCmag, and Rtings. It performed really well in their respective In-Ear Monitor roundups - it earned the "The best non-ANC premium wireless earbuds" title from Laptop Mag, "Best open earbuds" from CNET, and "No ANC, but great sound and a best buy for dedicated Apple followers" from Tom's Guide, marking it a step above most of its competition.

When we thoroughly analyzed their review scores, we learned that all of the sources that tested both In-Ear Monitors, including PCmag and SoundGuys, preferred the Etymotic ER3XR over the Apple AirPods (2021).

We also took a look at which sources they managed to impress the most. The Etymotic ER3XR was liked best by Head-fi, which gave it a score of 9.6, while the Apple AirPods (2021) got its highest, 10, score from Expert Reviews.

Lastly, we averaged out all of their review ratings and observed that the Etymotic ER3XR, with its 8.8 average, performed considerably better than most In-Ear Monitors - the mean score for the product category being 7.7 out of 10 - while the Apple AirPods (2021) managed an average of 7.7.

There's one caveat here - it might not be entirely justifiable to do a direct Etymotic ER3XR vs. Apple AirPods (2021) review average comparison since they aren't priced the same and more expensive products tend to get higher review scores from some sources.

Comparison of expert ratings
Highly Recommended
Recommended
Mentioned
Not Mentioned
CNET
Tom's Guide
PCmag
Laptop Mag
Rtings
SoundGuys
Wareable
Gear Patrol
Expert Reviews
Macworld
Tech. Specs Comparison
Apple AirPods (2021)
$179
Etymotic ER3XR
Higher than average expert review score
7.8
Overall Avg. for In-Ear Monitors
8.8
Avg. Review Score
Score
Highly recommended by trusted experts
PCmag
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Overall
in “The Best Tech Gifts for Music Lovers” 
Last updated: 23 Nov 2021
CNET
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “Best Open Wireless Earbuds For 2023” 
Last updated: 16 days ago
Rtings
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “The 6 Best Wireless Earbuds For iPhone - Winter 2023” 
Last updated: 22 Dec 2022
Tom's Guide
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “Apple Memorial Day sales 2022: best deals still available right now - AirPods” 
Last updated: 31 May 2022
headphonesaddict.com
Trusted Source
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Best Overall
in “8 Best Non In-Ear Earbuds / Classic Earbuds in (2023)” 
Last updated: 25 days ago
TrustedReviews
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “Best AirPods 2023: Ranking Apple’s headphones” 
Last updated: 8 days ago
iMore
Trusted Source
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “Best Find My accessories 2023” 
Last updated: 22 Feb 2022
techadvisor.com
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Open Fit
in “Best true wireless earbuds 2023” 
Last updated: 16 days ago
Expert Reviews
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best open-fit wireless earbuds
in “Best headphones 2023: Brilliant audio options to suit every budget” 
Last updated: 17 days ago
Techradar
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
The best AirPods without noise cancellation
in “The best true wireless earbuds for 2023: top AirPods alternatives today” 
Last updated: a month ago
What to Expect
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Best Overall
in “Best Gifts for New Dads” 
Last updated: 5 May 2022
ilounge.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Best Overall
in “iLounge” 
Last updated: 10 Jun 2021
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 30 Nov 2022
PCmag
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Overall
in “The Best Tech Gifts for Music Lovers” 
Last updated: 23 Nov 2021
CNET
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best open earbuds
in “Best Headphones for 2023: Top Picks for All Styles” 
Last updated: 11 days ago
Tom's Guide
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
No ANC, but great sound and a best buy for dedicated Apple followers
in “The best wireless earbuds in 2023: Our top picks for any budget” 
Last updated: 22 days ago
Expert Reviews
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best open-fit wireless earbuds
in “Best wireless earbuds 2023: Our favourite budget and premium earbuds for wire-free listening” 
Last updated: 25 days ago
Techradar
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
The best wireless earbuds for an outer-ear fit
in “The best wireless earbuds 2023: top Bluetooth earbuds for all budgets” 
Last updated: 3 Jan 2023
PCmag
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Overall
in “The Best Tech Gifts for Music Lovers” 
Last updated: 23 Nov 2021
CNET
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best open AirPods
in “Best Apple AirPods for 2023: Top Picks Across Generations” 
Last updated: 13 days ago
Tom's Guide
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
The best standard AirPods for voice and FaceTime calls
in “The best wireless headphones in 2023” 
Last updated: 23 days ago
Gear Patrol
Trusted Source
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “Which of Apple's AirPods Should You Buy?” 
Last updated: 23 Sep 2022
Techradar
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Ranked #4 out of 5
in “The best AirPods 2023” 
Last updated: 1 Dec 2022
CNET
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best open wireless earbuds
in “Best Wireless Earbuds for 2023: Top Picks for Every Listener” 
Last updated: 18 days ago
Tom's Guide
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
The best standard AirPods for voice and FaceTime calls
in “The best headphones with a mic for voice and video calls in 2023” 
Last updated: a month ago
PCmag
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Rated 7.0 out of 10
in “Which AirPods Should You Buy? The Best AirPods for 2023” 
Last updated: 28 Nov 2022
Techradar
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Ranked #10 out of 14
in “14 best Apple Watch accessories to pair with your smartwatch” 
Last updated: 20 Jul 2022
CNET
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Apple open earbuds
in “Best Earbuds for Phone Calls for 2023: Earbuds With Mic” 
Last updated: 25 Dec 2022
PCmag
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Rated 7.0 out of 10
in “Which AirPods Should You Buy? The Best AirPods for 2023” 
Last updated: 28 Nov 2022
Gear Patrol
Trusted Source
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “7 New Gadgets to Keep on Your Radar” 
Last updated: 22 Oct 2021
PCmag
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Rated 7.0 out of 10
in “Which AirPods Should You Buy? The Best AirPods for 2023” 
Last updated: 28 Nov 2022
Android Authority
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “The best open ear headphones to spend your money on” 
Last updated: 22 Nov 2022
Android Central
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “Best earbuds that support spatial audio 2021” 
Last updated: 13 Nov 2021
The Verge
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “Best wireless earbuds in 2022” 
Last updated: 18 Nov 2022
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 12 days ago
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 25 days ago
Tom's Guide
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “These are the best cheap products for entering the Apple ecosystem” 
Last updated: 30 May 2022
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 3 Jan 2023
CNET
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “Best Back-to-School Headphones for 2022” 
Last updated: 26 Aug 2022
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 1 Dec 2022
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 11 Nov 2022
Gear Patrol
Trusted Source
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “Stocking Stuffer Ideas for Tech Junkies” 
Last updated: 25 Aug 2022
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 30 Aug 2022
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 6 Jul 2022
Gear Patrol
Trusted Source
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “17 Perfect Gifts for the Mediaphile” 
Last updated: 1 Jun 2021
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 30 Jun 2022
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 31 May 2022
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 15 Mar 2022
xda-developers.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “XDA Developers” 
Last updated: 9 Nov 2021
Recommended by trusted experts
PCmag
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Rated 9.0 out of 10
in “The Best Earbuds (In-Ear Headphones) for 2023” 
Last updated: 16 Nov 2022
PCmag
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Rated 9.0 out of 10
in “The Best Earbuds (In-Ear Headphones) for 2023” 
Last updated: 16 Nov 2022
PCmag
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Rated 9.0 out of 10
in “The Best Earbuds (In-Ear Headphones) for 2023” 
Last updated: 16 Nov 2022

Find the best product and price, effortlessly.

Discover deals on products actually worth buyingthe best products

We do the research. You save the money.
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