I’m going to say it up front, I really don’t like the Beats brand. They are expensive, flashy, and way too much of the price tag is wrapped up in marketing.
However, I now own a number of Beats headphones and I feel like I should justify them to the internet because so many of you were asking for it.
My first purchase was two years ago. I bought a pair of Beats Studio Wireless headphones. My criteria at the time: I needed sound canceling headphones, they must be around the ear (I will never wear on-ear as they hurt way too much), they have to be Bluetooth, and they need to be super comfortable.
At the time, Bose was the leader with sound canceling headphones, but their problem was they were wired-only. I think Sennheiser also had a pair that met my needs, but there was something they didn’t do that I wanted, so that left with with Beats. I bought them, they were expensive, and they’ve been good till recently. Sadly, the headband ratcheting system is breaking down, which means they don’t stay where I put them anymore, and last night I noticed the ear cups leather had split on the seam and now I need knew cups. Also, the entire set creaks pretty bad now. Not happy for such expensive phones after only 2 years of use.
Shortly after that purchase, I picked up some refurbished Powerbeats 2 on Black Friday for like $40. Best purchase I’ve ever made. They’re not perfect, but for that price, they were great. I’ve used those for a year and a half with no issues. I loved them so much that when the PB3’s were announced with the W1 chip in them, I rushed out and bought the PB3’s and I’ve used them daily since. They don’t seal in my ears very well (I have very small earholes) so noise leaks into them when I’m outside, but they stay on, are very light, and the W1 chip makes them nearly perfect.
Enter the AirPods. I can’t use any apple-branded “Pod” earbuds. As-mentioned previously, my ears are delicate little flowers and they hurt like hell after more than 20 minutes of use. I bought them, tried them out and after a painful 30 minutes of use, gave them to my wife, who loves them.
I really wish they would have worked for me because I would have loved to have had something in my ears to handle all my calls/podcasts/audiobooks all day long. Sadly, the AirPods aren’t ever going to work for me until Apple puts out ones with swappable tips.
Enter the BeatsX. They fit snugly in my ears, they are comfortable enough that I can wear them for a couple of hours before my ears need a break. They seal very well so I don’t hear road noise, and dat W1 chip Boyz.
Very happy with my purchase, but I still use my PB3’s for working out then the X’s for podcasts and what-not.
Here’s hoping better-built Studio Beats are released with the W1 chip.