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Beats Top Selling Headphone Gets a Facelift, the Solo2 Review

It has been quite a few weeks for the Beats brand, yet being acquired by Apple almost seems like a distant memory at this point. Especially, after this week’s debut of The Game Before the Game commercial which celebrates great footballers – and some other not so random sports superstars like Lebron and Serena. But even if you aren’t a World Cup fan, I can guarantee that this unexpected and adrenaline pulsing commercial will most likely convert you. In any case, while watching the pre-game rituals of these athletes before hitting the world stage of soccer, you may notice one common element besides the tattoos, and that is the pair of Solo2 headphones a few of them are wearing. Because at the end of the day, as much as the top footballers might turn you on, there are headphones that need to be sold.

Solo2 debuted on June 5th, the same day the commercial aired.The original Solo headphones just happen to be the top selling headphones out of the entire Beats line-up. In fact, Luke Wood, President of Beats Electronics told an audience that “In 2013 nearly four Solos were sold every minute around the US.” That is not too shabby…

“In 2013 nearly four Solos were sold every minute around the US.”

The Solo2 has finally arrived, and much like the 2013 Beats Studio, they have been redesigned for the better. Also, in all my years testing headphones, this is the first time that I’ve experienced that “new car smell.” To that effect, it was quite intoxicating while opening the box.

Gone is the flimsier design of the original Solo, and its weak hinges. Instead there is a much more flexible and more comfortable headband. The ear cups are slightly larger this time around, very comfy and hug your ears tightly, providing a tight seal that keeps most noise out, while also preventing the music from seeping out. The overall design is still pretty plasticky and is finished off with a high-gloss shine. Our pair of pink Solo2’s would certainly get the Nicki Minaj seal of approval.

The in-line cable with remote is still pretty much the same, it doesn’t tangle and it’s thick enough that it should handle normal wear and tear over time well. However, one of the biggest changes with the Solo2 is the sound. There is more body, less overwhelming bass, and a somewhat balanced experienced. There are always going to be critics, but honestly, the Solo2’s really sound good, especially for the audience that will engage with these headphones. The sound is loud and wide. Just give Skrillex or Rolling Stones’ Sympathy for the Devil a spin, and you will be mightily impressed. Madonna, Jay-Z, Iggy Azalea and the like, sound just as good – and throughout vocals are crisp, as well as the highs. The bass doesn’t muddy the experience, but only adds to it.

Verdict

Will the Solo2 continue the reign of the original Solo? I think they will. These are solid headphones that even picky cynics will agree have grown-up. The available color choices are fun too and so is the new redesigned look. The Solo2 will definitely continue to attract that juicy Beats demographic. The Beats Solo2 retails for $199 and are available now.

The Good: Redesigned for the better. Sound has improved vastly over the original Solo. Ear cups are comfortable and provide a tight seal. Bass is now much more subtle than before. Good soundstage. Remastered tracks sound especially good.

The Bad: The included soft carrying case provides a tight fit for the headphones. The headband may be too tight for some, but could also lessen overtime. Might be too plasticky for some. The In-line remote can be a little temperamental when moving from song to song.

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