Gadgetslab: Beats Drenched Solo HD

Drenched-with-Beats1SPECIFICATIONS:

Type: On-Ear

Connectivity: 3.5mm audio cable with in-line mic and remote function (4.3ft)

Impedance: 45ohms

Frequency Response: 20H – 20kHZ

Sensitivity: 115dB

What’s Hot:

-Impressive design

What’s Not:

-Expensive price tag

-Unbalanced sound

When hip-hop rapper and record producer Dr. Dre isn’t making music, he’s busy designing his Beats line of audio. They’ve been making waves since it came out and has been known for its thread of celebrity endorsements alongside a growing fan base of devoted young adults. One of the top items in his line, the Solo HD, has been revamped with a pleasing makeover in the latest Beats Drenched in Color collection.

DESIGN (5/5)

Latest from Dr. Dre is the Beats Drenched collection. And no, its name has nothing to do about them being waterproof. The Drenched in Color Solo is basically the classic Beats Solo HD earphones drenched in a solid matte finish but still sporting the same iconic design.

In exchange for the classic Solo’s glossy finish, is a low-key matte coating which defines the Drenched collection. The whole package, cable and case included is coated in a nice deep red save for the reflective Beats logo on the cups. Other colors in the collection are green, blue, light blue, red, black, magenta, purple, white, and mint colors.

The Beats Solo HD embodies a premium feel and quality to it like a luxury car. Admittedly, I was expecting a flashy too-cool-for-my-style set when I unboxed it but I found myself marveling at the pair for a few minutes before trying them on.

An adjustable metal band wrapped in plastic connects the ear cups which are topped with real leather. While the ends fold to the inside making it convenient for easy storage and listening on-the-go.

I’ve always found Beats too flashy for my liking. However, the toned down Drenched collection makes for an ultra-sexy pair of cans that made me think twice about betting my money on them. It could be that I’m biased with red but I think the Drenched Solo is beautiful.

HARDWARE (4/5)

Oddly enough, it took me some time to find the Solo’s technical specs which aren’t mentioned in the box. But a couple of Google searches reveal it has a 45ohm impedance, a 115dB sensitivity and a frequency range of 20Hz to 20kHz which means ultra-low bass tone and clear highs shouldn’t be a problem. Listening in high volume wouldn’t distort the sound too.

The package comes with a removable cable with in-line mic and remote function that controls iOS devices. It would’ve been great if the remote is compatible with my laptop but that’s a minor issue. The 4.3ft cord has a straight 3.5mm jack you connect to the left ear cup while the end leads to an L-plug that attaches to your audio source.

USER EXPERIENCE (3.5/5)

The Solo exerted a comfortable amount of pressure on the head enough to keep them from falling out of place even as I moved about in commute. The ear cups did a good job of sealing in the sound too, but heavy sweaters might find the leather padding to be a slight problem.

For its P10, 500 price tag, you’d expect a more rounded performance but the Solo’s overall sound quality is more leaning towards unbalanced. I ran it across a multi-genre of songs and it’s noticeable especially when you listen in low volume that the bass overpowers the mids which would sometimes result in muffled vocals. Overall, the average user should find it has decent sound quality but I expect seasoned audiophiles would find the pair lacking in the audio department.

VALUE (3.5/5)

There’s no doubt that the Beats are stylish and its new finish increased the sexiness factor a few notches higher. It also has excellent build quality which very much feels like it could withstand a good amount of physical abuse. All this plus heavy branding however, makes for an expensive pair of cans with a sound quality hardcore audiophiles will find average at best.

If you have the means to purchase a pair of headphones for its style, I say go ahead, join the #BeatsArmy and indulge on the Drenched Beats Solo. But those looking for a hardcore pair might find less expensive options.

BOTTOMLINE

They’re ultimately a stylish pair of cans but hardcore audiophiles will find the sound unbalanced.

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