Best Skullcandy Headphones
Are Skullcandy headphones really "crap"?
If you have a friend who's an audiophile, they're usually the first to jump on the shaming of Skullcandy headphones as not "quality" cans. However, this might be all you can afford, you're new to audio, or you might just like how they look.
Skullcandy really isn't a bad/low quality brand at all.
It's like shopping for the "best" food in the grocery store. You can find apples that cost $12/pound that were supposedly grown by the pope himself, or you can buy the $1/pound store brand apples. They're both apples that can be eaten, but one has a higher perceived price.
So we're going to show you the best options for Skullcandy apples/headphones.
Skullcandy Hesh 2: Best Value
We're going to start this dive into Skullcandy with a very general pair of headphones, the Hesh 2. There are a few versions of the Hesh 2, but this one is our favorite for a few reasons, and we'll go over why all these are important later. First, it comes with a cable instead of being strictly wireless. Next, it's an over ear headphone. Finally, the price is perfect for what you're getting.
Wired vs. wireless
First of all these headphones come with a QUALITY wire for the music delivery, which makes a load of difference.
Wired headphones give you a better audio quality than wireless, for the simple fact that it's not putting all that tech into the air to risk getting lost, it's driving it straight to the headphones. You do get the option though to have them be wireless if you like, which is great for convenience in our opinion!
Over ear vs. On ear
Would you rather be surrounded by sound, or have sound casually thrown at your ear?
Which is why over ear headphones are always the right choice when shopping for a quality pair of cans. So skullcandy delivers with the over the ear Hesh 2s.
When you're reading this the price has probably changed. Maybe up maybe down...no telling, but I'm sure they're still the best value around for what you're getting! When we did our research these cans were around $120, but that is subject to change. So check the price on Amazon to keep us honest 😉
Skullcandy Crusher Headphones: Least Expensive
Next is the Crusher series from ol' Skullcandy. These are what you'd consider the "base model" to start with. You'll get the basics like comfort, some features, and some enhanced sound quality. Overall though, you're not getting the best impression of Skullcandy cans with these.
They are; however, perfect for the bass fiend who doesn't have a lot of money. With the added amp and bass pusher, they will melt your eardrums and keep their slogan of #stayloud alive.
Just from the looks of the headband, we could tell these would maybe be tollerable for an hour. Well turns out it was less than that before it felt like the headband was digging a bit, so that needs some work for sure.
The ear cups are a little bit better, not sure who the target market is for the ear holes though. They are over ear style headphones, but they could easily fit Legolas' elf ears. Seriously. There wasn't a whole lot of padding either on the ear cups.
This is where these Skullcandy cans really shone! If you're someone who wants to have headphones that can do a lot, then these are for you. From bass boost to sliding buttons, to an extra battery powered built in amp, these things were loaded with special treats.
Most of all the bass boost is what keeps us interested in them. More so for the fact that there's a few bass fiends on the Gadget Impact team, but they did the bass boost really well. The music still came through pretty clear and didn't get too muddy.
The bass boost kinda bled over into our perception of sound quality for these guys, so that's why the sound quality isn't given an overall "meh". In reality the sound quality is mediocre, but the fact that they threw in the extra built in amp with the bass boost covers up some of the flaws. Which isn't excusable, but it does help their overall performance!
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Skullcandy Crusher Headphones: Most Expensive Casual Use
Moving on, we're going to look at the one of the most expensive sets of cans you can buy from Skullcandy, the fully loaded crushers. Unfortunately these put a bit more emphasis in the bass direction than overall sound quality, but they more than make up for it with the durability, design, and comfort of the headphones over all.
The memory foam on the earcups is over the moon compared to the base edition of the Crushers! There's a solid inch of memory foam wrapped in plush leather to keep your ears and head comfy. The headband is also a bit lighter with about the same amount of padding, which means they're a bit more comfortable than the headband on the previous model.
With the expandable headband you're also able to get a bit more custom fit instead of having to mess with the sliding head bands.
Like the other Crushers, these come fully loaded as far as tech features go. Including a strictly wireless connection, which could (and does) cause the sound quality to suffer a bit. Overall though, you get the same features that you do with the previous pair, adjustable bass (renamed haptic levels for whatever reason), 40 hour battery life, the only thing that's missing is the extra battery powered driver.
If that's all that's taken out when you get all this good stuff though, that's not too bad.
Granted these are casual listener headphones and not studio quality mixers, so we don't expect the world of these guys, but they can do a bit better than this. The sound quality was pretty bad to be frank. The bass was WAY over the top, which caused a lot of songs to become a bit blurry and lost in the bass, instead of just allowing all the levels to work together to make a great sound.
The wireless aspect also hindered their ability as well. Like we talked about with the Hesh 2s, when you have a wireless connection that's just inviting sound quality to get lost in the transfer. Especially when the headphones get a bit farther away from the transmitter/phone, we noticed it was just bad.
If you like face melting bass though, these are for you! When the bass hits it's like waves on waves of volume and sound. It's not great for quality listening, but man if you need to just turn the music up and get lost, you can do it effectively with these Crushers!
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Skullcandy Mix Master: Most Professional
Audiophile newbies/budget audiophiles this is your jam! The Mix Masters by Skullcandy lived up to the hype for sure! They're not going to beat a pair of HifiMans, but they're pretty dang good for sure. Comfort is on point, style is a bit edgy...but the sound. Oh, the sound...
Combine the comfort of the upper level Crushers ear cups with the headband, and you now have a pair of headphones worth keeping around. The Mix Masters by Skullcandy are a very comfortable pair of headphones. That will come in handy if you're using these as professional DJing headphones or mixing audio for hours on end.
You get some pretty new features with the particular set up. Starting with what they've left out, the wireless ability which isn't that big of a deal because these aren't casual listening headphones. Next there's the 90 degree swivel ear cups. This is more of traditional DJ image necessity than anything else, but hey, it does look cool!
Lastly there's the 50mm drivers that will blow you away!
These drivers are meant to allow you to be able to hear the beats you're mixing in a raging club, so you know they can put out the volume.
These are the highest sound quality you're going to get from Skullcandy, and we know that's not saying a lot if you're comparing the Mix Masters to brands like Audio Technica and Bohm. However, if you're new to hifi and don't want to spend your paycheck on one pair of headphones, these would be a great option.
In typical Skullcandy fashion, the bass is prioritized over the other audio, but this is the highest quality and most balanced pair of headphones from Skullcandy to date.
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