Apple has clarified that Vision Pro’s Lossless Audio format will only work with the just-announced AirPods Pro with a USB-C charging case and not with any other AirPods model, even with the same earphones model that shipped with the prior Lightning charging case.
Bloomeberg‘s Mark Gurman reached out to Apple to clarify whether all second-generation AirPods Pro models work with Vision Pro’s new Lossless Audio format irrespective if the earphones shipped with a Lightning or USB-C charging case. The company has apparently confirmed that the feature is exclusive to the USB-C charging case model only, even if both models are technically labeled as “second-generation.”
Apple announced a refresh to the second-generation AirPods Pro to accommodate a USB-C case instead of Lightning as the iPhone 15 also made a similar switch to the universal connector. While Apple still refers to them as second-generation, the refreshed AirPods Pro also contains other smaller improvements, like improved dust resistance at IP54 rating.
Apple states that Lossless Audio is a new feature for superior audio experience on Vision Pro, working in tandem with the USB-C AirPods Pro. The new format enables “ultra-low latency” at 20-bit resolution and a sampling rate of 48 kHz. Apple also adds that the USB-C AirPods Pro still carries the same H2 chip with no apparent improvements, so it remains unclear what exactly is causing this feature discrepancy with the updated AirPods
Users who would like to use Lossless Audio once they get their hands on Vision Pro will have to buy a whole new pair of the refreshed AirPods Pro at the same $249 price tag, as Apple is not offering an option to buy the new USB-C charging case on its own.