Days before the launch of its new handheld, phone brand Nothing is whetting users’ appetite by releasing a follow-up to its Ear (2) wireless earbuds – now in black.

There is more to the Nothing Ear (2) earbuds than just a shiny new paint job as the company has made some tweaks to address some of the issues we had with the original pair. Chief among these changes is the introduction of an Advanced Equalizer, which gives users the ability to create more detailed audio profiles. 

To get the tool, you will have to first install the latest update for the Nothing X smartphone app. The patch introduces a series of sliding controls for adjusting audio gain as well as the frequency control. Once done, you can listen to the changes made through a real-time preview in case you want to make any additional tweaks.

According to a video posted on the official Nothing Twitter account, people can “save separate profiles for different genres” as well. And you can share said profiles with friends via QR code in the Settings menu. 

Software patch

The rest of the update is a series of optimizations for the Ear (2). Notable changes include improved Bluetooth connectivity and better call quality “when using Active Noise Cancellation (ACN) in ‘Adaptive’ mode.” 

Speaking of which, the noise reduction effect will be more robust when utilizing ACN in “High mode”. The volume of prompt sounds have been adjusted too. In what capacity, we don’t know. Nothing didn’t provide a lot of details, though we did ask. We should also mention the Ear (stick) is getting Noise Reduction plus the Advanced Equalizer as well in this update. 

To get everything you see here, launch Nothing X, go to the Device Settings, and select Firmware Update.

Nothing Ear (2) being worn

(Image credit: Nothing)

Apart from the software enhancements, the hardware on the Ear (2) is staying exactly the same. You still get the lightweight design housing a powerful 11.6mm customer driver on each side. The Ear (2) wireless earbuds are currently available for purchase from Nothing’s website for $149; same as the white model.  

Room from improvement

We’ve complain about how mid-range vocal performances sound rather poorly coming out of the drivers in our Nothing Ear (2) review. With Advanced Equalizer, the voice problem has been effectively eliminated since you can now fine-tune the audio, which is great to see. However, we do wish Nothing had made the battery better on the black model as well. The buds by themselves last four hours on a single charge – one of the lowest in the industry. 

With the case, the number is bumped up to 22.5 hours, which is okay. Still, just four hours on the buds? Hopefully the battery life on the Ear (3), if there are plans for a third, will be much better.

July 11 will be a big day for the brand as that’s when its next flagship device, the Nothing Phone 2, officially launches. We don’t know all the exact details of what the smartphone is bringing to the table, but a recent massive leak does reveal a ton of potential hardware upgrades from sporting a 6.7-inch OLED display to being powered by the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 chipset.

Once you’re reading up on our coverage of the Nothing Phone 2, check out TechRadar’s list of the best cheap phones in the US for 2023

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