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Wireless item created by nightmancometh, Mar 12, 2014
Pros - Design is very sleek, overall sound is more balanced, Phone call quality
Cons - Non-replaceable ear pads, Finger prints, Not Cheap
This review is for Beats Studio Wireless over the ear, I know audiophiles are known for not liking wireless and Beats. When Beats was first introduced audiophiles dumped on them right away because they weren't tuned neutral. They were also known for being bass heavy that sounded muddy and took over the mids, the bass was actually really loose and unpleasant. Every one deserves a 2nd chance, I am sure everyone here has purchased a par of cans that they weren't happy with but still purchased another product from the same company. I don't consider myself an audiophile but a headphone enthusiast, I am 38 years old with 2 kids that love there Beats know matter how they sound. Being in a club for example the audiophile club, you want to fit in and you do what all the other cool kids are doing right. So to fit into the crowd most members have there mind made up from the start. I have even seen post saying "I would never buy my kids Beats not in my house" that's some serious stuff kind of amusing. I bet that same person has never even heard them before. So here I am with my 2nd chance, I would like to say thank you to Erin from Beats for supplying me with a demo unit for review. I am not an employee or am I being compensated for this review. All pictures were taken by me and is based on my honest opinion.
We all know how Beats was started so I won't go into that, but they are marketing geniuses and you can't go any were in the city without seeing someone wearing a pair. At one point Beats made up 70% of all headphone sales in the US. That is just mind blowing for how many companies there are, Beats is now owned by Apple and what better company could take them to the next level besides Apple.
Beats Studio Wireless can be purchased for $379.95 from there website.
Adaptive Noise Canceling
3.5 Audio Cable
USB 2.0 Charging cable (USB-A to USB Micro-B)
USB Power adapter
Hard Shell carrying case
Quick Start Guide
PACKAGING and ACCESSORIES
The Beats Studio Wireless I received were the gloss black, they came in a very nice box with a hi-res photo printed on a matte black sleeve. Ounce you remove the sleeve there is a heavy duty red box, after removing the lid you are greeted with the headphones hard case with there logo front and center. Underneath the cardboard shell there is the manual and a small box containing the cords. Beats really leaves you with a very memorable first impression. To get to all the accessories Beats includes fabric tabs to easily pull them out, they even include a finger whole to lift out the first piece of cardboard. Beats has some of the nicest packaging that I have ever, I would even feel safe throwing them off my roof that's how well there packaged.
Included in the box is a wide range of cables the cables only come in the color red, but it really doesn't matter since these are intended for wireless use. The first cable is the charging cable that plugs into the provided wall part, It's nice to see they didn't switch over to Apples proprietary plug. They also include a cable with and without a mic for wired use, they are rated for 20 hours plugged in and 12 hours wireless. Included is a hard shell case for storage, it's about time companies used hard shell cases I can't stand soft pouches. What good is a soft pouch if you throw them in a book bag, thanks for the hard shell. You can even clip them to a bag with the included carabiner, overall they go over the top with packaging and first impressions. They also do a great job with the include accessories, they could have included a soft pouch and one cable but they go the extra mile.
BUILD and FIT
First off we all know there stylish or we wouldn't see them all over the place, some people don't even listen to them and use them as a necklace. There build is sleeker then the older model Studio's, and seem to feel sturdier. They are mostly an all plastic design with no screws or rivets that are visible, that gives them a real clean look. For adjustment both ear pieces slide up and down for the right length, I think this is the only place that metal is incorporated. I found these to be very comfortable for long periods, they are very light due to the all plastic design. The ear pads form to your ears with plenty of room inside the cups. This is one of the problems I have with these non-removable ear pads, one of the first things to be worn out. For storage they fold into each other and fit nicely into the hard case, the hard case is big enough that you don't have to slide them back up. The hinges fell a lot sturdier then there older models, which is good due to a lot of broken headphones.
For charging there is a USB connection under the ear cup. There is a row of lights near the power button that they call the Fuel Gauge to show how much power is left. On the other ear is were the controls are for controlling music and phone calls, these are rated for up to 30 feet in wireless mode. What else gives them a sleek design there are no markings for music operations like play and pause. The one side is a big button with the logo that can be pushed side to side and up and down for music and phone controls. All the cables are coated with a nonstick rubber coating, the plug for using wired is gold plated and is set at a right angle. The cable with the mic is your typical 3 button function for music and phone operation, the housing follows the all plastic design. Strain reliefs feels above average the cables feel and look very sturdy. One of the problems with these if you like the high gloss finish is there fingerprints for magnets.
SOUND (2nd chance)
So is it the same old Beats that audiophiles have come to known, not a chance most of use wouldn't even know that we were listening to Beats. Are the bass heavy that would satisfy bass heads, sorry if your a bass head you will be disappointed due to there more balanced and refined sound. The bass is punchy but well controlled and has very good mid-bass. Female vocals can be heard with great clarity, even for being blue tooth. Higher frequencies are were these can lack a little especially with rock and roll. Soundstage is about average and can be a bit shallow, but has better width and depth. I paired these with no problem to my Samsung Alpha, Lenovo Ultrabook, and IPhone 6. you can tell these are aimed at a younger generation, they sound there best with Rap, Hip-Hop, and Electronica. I did throw some Led Zepplin at them it sounded better then any other wireless headphone I have used, but had problems with instrument separation and sounded a little congested. But these are made for convenience in noisy environments and not for critical listening. This is the only headphone that I have used that the Active noise cancellation really work, I was honestly amazed at how well it work. I tested this with out music on to see how well they can remove background noise. I have a very unbalanced fan in my room with the light covers loose that rattle really bad. I am to lazy to get a chair and tighten the screws. With the headphones turned off I could hear the glass form the light cover rattle and the fan blades shaking the whole thing, Then powered on with no music it was dead silent, I must have done this 25 times just because I was so amazed how it canceled all the noise out.
Making phone calls was one of the Beats Studio's strong points. Phone calls sounded nice and clear and the person on the other end had no idea I was on a wireless headphone.
My second chance with Beats, I am glad I did sometimes if we don't give that chance you will never know what you could be missing. There are definitely things that could be improved but what headphone doesn't. I would really like to see removable ear pads at this price range and some metal instead of all plastic. I think they listened to some of us and made there house sound more balanced and less forgiving on the bass. The overall sound is very enjoyable and since I received these I haven't used any of my other headphones since. They do come at a hefty price tag but your going to pay extra for wireless and noise cancelling. Are these going replace my Grado's not a chance but they do have there place when convenience of wireless comes to play and at least I know they will sound good and I can enjoy them for long periods. I can't wait to see what they have to offer in the future now that Apple owns them. With the capitol they have and the resources of so many talented engineers they could design an End Game headphone someday. Thanks for reading I hope I helped anyone considering these.
Pros - Good BT Range, decent portability, good look, decent sound, good comfort, loud.
Cons - poor detail and soundstage, intrusive dull/dark bass, harsh highs, poor mids, loud hiss, pricy, incompetent Customer Care and/or Fraud about Aptx.
I have tested many BT Headphones for weeks.
I have opened a Thread about this huge comparison.
At first, there is a big "?" on these Headphones; the ghost of the Aptx.
They are not listed on the Official Aptx Website, there is no notification about an Aptx connection when they connect to an Aptx Phone or PC, even the Sennheiser BTD500 dongle blinks blue (like for "no Aptx") and not red (like for "Aptx") when connected to these beats, and there is NO mention to Aptx for them on the Manual or on Beats Website.
And nobody would hide that. Aptx is a major selling point.
So, the obvious conclusion is that they do NOT have Aptx.
But you can read lot of reviews claiming they do.
And some of them say that Beats told them so.
So I tried myself and after a long wait their Customer Care came with the answer of their Tech Support: the Studio wireless support Aptx.
This is clearly false, so I wanted to have a proof of such falsity and I asked for a written confirmation, an Email.
I have got this email. Cool.
So, for how I see it, this is a Fraud, or a case of very bad Support.
And this is not acceptable from such a name (which now is Apple).
About the SOUND.
Tastes are tastes and I will never claim that my tastes are better. Besides I'm not gonna talk of my tastes but only of what is more or less objective.
And due to the big amount of BT Headphones compared, I am in a good position to judge a Headphone more objectively, or less subjectively.
they are not "bad". But they do NOT worth that money, EVER. You get much better for less.
Anyway they look very nice, they are portable enough, they are very comfortable (IF you do not have big ears), they have a very good BT range, a more or less decent sound, and they are loud, with a loud high frequency HISS which you can annoyingly hear when the music is more quite.
- The soundstage is poor, the detail is mediocre
- In the Mid Range the low mids are dominant and dull, the center and upper mids are muffled and lack warmth. They cannot create a bridge along the sound, which is divided between bass and highs.
- The bass is very abundant but of mediocre quality: it is muddy, dull, dark and intrusive, with a muffled punch, almost zero rumble, and no warmth, no depth, poor body.
- The highs are abundant too, but a bit harsh and with mediocre detail.
I was able to PARTIALLY compensate their lacks and excesses by strongly EQing them. I can write you in the comments my EQ setting if you ask.
But you cannot change them much. And you cannot make them give what they do not have. You can only moderate their faults.
I definitely do NOT suggest them. There are less expensive and more qualitative options around, which are also good looking.
But considering that all is relative, if you love their look and are not very picky with Sound Quality, you may give them a try.
But only if you can return them in case you're not satisfied.
So, I hope this helped!
Pros - Comfort convenience and fun sound
Cons - They are pricey
I bought these after reading a good review of the new Solo2 phones, and while they (the wireless studios) aren't in the same Leage of sound quality as my LCD2 and Burson combo I'm surprised at how much I am enjoying listening to them. The wireless is so convenient and they are comfortable for extended use. I walked my dog for a while this afternoon and now after being home for an hour or so I still have them on. I have to be honest I'd be the first to return them If they sound bad (like I've read previous Beats models do, and honestly if a week ago someone told me I'd buy a pair of Beats headphones, I prob would have laughed) but I have to say I'm lovin the balanced bassy sound they have. The sound stage is good enough, there's detail and the treble is nice. I've owned dt990 and 770's, hd650 Ultrasone hfi2400 and akg q701 and k550, Sony 1R, klipsch x10 and all are great but these are staying on my head longer then I ever did with the other pairs. I know in part to the convince of wireless but also I have to say the Studio wireless are low on ear fatigue and just simply enjoyable....:rolleyes: did I just write all of that, do I really own a pair of Beats? Yes, and I'm happy I took the gamble on buying them because this is going to be a fun few years of wireless music.
Pros - Sound Signature, APTx, Noise Cancellation, Bluetooth, Battery Life, Music Control
Cons - Padding is a little thin, Cannot turn Noise Cancellation off
I know what I like. That is clear, precise, and powerful sound reproduction. These Beats are clear and powerful, and pretty precise. I am testing with a Samsung Galaxy S5, and Spotify with "Extreme Quality" tracks. The bottleneck is the bitrate of the tracks.
Sound- Lows are low, and not nearly as muddy and overbearing as before! Mids are more present than ever in Beats. Highs are a tad too "Crispy", but not a big deal. Noise cancellation is always on, but this isn't too much of a bummer, everything is still clear.
Wired- Has an auto off/on feature now. Plug in the cable and it's on! It's actually kind of cool. Bass is a slight bit more extended while wired and has a little more detail. The wire is okay, not the nicest ever.
Wireless- Beats confirmed with me that they apparently DO use APT-X codec. Why is it not advertised? Not a clue. This makes sense seen as how the audio is nearly as good as wired and doesn't have the typical nasty sound like when transmitting from my Galaxy Nexus with no APT-X. The DSP and amplifier built in do a great job. It is loud via bluetooth. Loud enough that I only push 75% volume.
Noise Cancellation- Wow, these are actually really good. They let really loud noises in and not much else. Of course they have a hiss when no music is playing, but that's expected. The "Adaptive" cancellation turns that down when music is playing. By the way, these are awesome on a plane.
Music is controlled with the "b" on the left side. Tap to pause, double-tap to skip. Volume is on the same ear and is simple. Up above the "b" is up and down is...well...down. The touch controls on the Zik's and Level-Over are neat, but mechanical doesn't let you accidentally change the song.
The padding is comfortable, though it may be a little thin for some. After 2 hours, my ears were touching the hard plastic grille on the inside. My ears weren't too toasty either.
Overall, I love these things. APT-X is amazing and so is the noise cancellation, especially when flying or out and about in noisy places. Finally I am okay with cutting the wire for periods of time, and I'm delighted, but not disappointed, when plugging back in.
Pros - Portability, on-the-go usage, not too intrusive NC, reasonable sound quality
Cons - Price, stigma attached to the brand
I never thought I would use Beats headphones, however when searching for a noise canceling bluetooth headphone which was light enough to wear comfortably while traveling, there were not many options. After reading a few positive reviews of the new studios, I decided to take a chance with the wireless version. I am glad I did. They are quite impressive for their intended usage. While using various forms of public transit and in the air, these are great headphones. They maintain good sound quality while out and about, and are light and comfortable enough to keep on your head for extended periods.
I tried to give these headphones an honest listening to for a few days before comparing them to anything. On their own, I was very pleased with the sound. They do have a colored sound signature, but people buying this brand would be well aware of that. The bass is quite tight and prominent, but for the most part not boomy or muddy. The mids are well pronounced and clear, and the highs are crisp, but not at all painful or tiring to listen to. I am no audiophile, so forgive me if I do not use the correct adjectives, however I would say the sound stage is somewhat compressed sounding. Not in all the tracks, but sometimes it feels like everything is coming at once, rather than a more spacious feeling of some other headphones I have listened to. Overall, my first impression of them as an "on the go" headphone was positive.
After some time I sat down with a more analytical ear. In a quiet environment, and compared to other headphones, I can hear some flaws. Firstly, there is a pronounced hissing in a quiet environment from the NC. This is not audible while music is playing (except, perhaps, in the most quiet of environments and in a soft song), but is evident in between songs. This may annoy some. Also, compared to something like the M50, the lowest sub bass seems to fall off quickly. Finally, if you decide to use these with the cable, the highs become a little harsh, and can be tiring to listen to (comparable to the M50). The mids are perhaps slightly clearer and less recessed than the M50s (the Beats almost appear to have a less V shaped sound than the ATs).
Having said that, this environment is not the intended use for these headphones. If you want to use these at home, in a quiet environment, there are a lot better options for the money. The strength of these headphones is really evident while out of the house, on public transit and so on. They are light. They are wireless. They have effective noise cancellation. They are comfortable for long periods of time. If you allocate $50 to each of those attributes as something in addition to sound quality, then perhaps they are even worth the sticker price. They also come with generous accessories and a hard carry case.
To sum them up - they are fun headphones to listen to. They wont destroy your music like some previous generations, but they also wont satisfy a discerning audiophile after an analytical sound. I couldn't find a better alternative for on-the-go wireless listening. And for this, I give them 4 stars. If they were 25% cheaper, it would be hard to fault them.
Pros - Comfortable, Build Quality, Bluetooth Wireless, Convenient
Cons - Price
For the first time I'm actually digging Beats. I've owned and tried different audiophile headphones. Sony MA900, Audio Technica AD900x/AD700x, V-Moda Crossfade M-100 and Sennheiser PC360 are some that come to mind. I feel comfortable saying that I have a fair idea of what the hi-fi standard is.
Beats are often criticized here due to their bad value and the fact that they're often labeled as the "best" headphones in the minds of ignorant consumers. The only reason I even have beats is because I get a good price on them due to an employee accommodation. I've tried Beats on before in the past and owned their last gen wireless headphones (Solo HD Wireless). Have never been impressed with any of them. The last gen model sounded mediocre at best to me and I only bought them for the convenience of being wireless.
So why am I recommending them now? Well, the Beats Studio Wireless are classy. Yes, I said classy and beats in the same sentence. I got the Matte Black variation and they're easily one of the most attractive headphones I've owned. The padding and headband materials feel and look nice. The plastic/matte finish is of premium quality and dare I say the audio quality is actually good. Very fun phones indeed. I've been using them in the gym and they're far more comfortable than the Solos. They don't creak or ever get loose on my head. Clamping force seems just right thanks to the padding providing great cushioning.
I have yet to determine if I would consider them audiophile quality yet, but they're definitely not THAT far from it. In comparison to my Sony MA900s, they're not as neutral or clear, but they're quite balanced. The Bass thumps but is not overpowering or muddy and the mids are fairly detailed. The noise cancelling works well and filters out the outside noise, but I've never been a fan of noise cancelling or closed cans in general. I've always preferred being able to hear things going on around me.
The only real complaint I have is that the MSRP is too high. At $380 the sound quality only matches that of the $200-250 sector. It is really up to you're willing to spend the extra for the added convenience of Bluetooth or the Beats branding.
I recommend them on the fact that they're really fun and convenient. They may be frowned upon here at Head-Fi due to being bad value, but these are definitely high quality. I have them paired to my Note 3 and the range is excellent. Battery life is great and there is actually a battery gauge on the side.