How do you make a pair of headphones stand out? You include a built-in amplifier, of course, and that’s exactly what Skullcandy did. In this extremely cluttered market, consumer headphones have no chance of getting any sort of attention unless they have big marketing budgets or celebrity endorsements. Skullcandy didn’t have to spring for either with the Crusher over-ear headphones.
The Crusher headphones are unique in many ways. Available in 14 unique patterns and colors, the Crusher also sports a 1-button mic and remote, and retails for $99.99 which is very budget-friendly. The built-in amplifier is truly a one of a kind feature. On the left ear cup you will find a slider that increases or decreases the intensity of the bass. When this is activated, it creates a sensation unlike any other I have felt before. While many headphones companies will try to convince you that you will “feel” the music, the Crusher LITERALLY has you feeling the music.
If you slide the amplifier way up, you get a thumping sensation, filling your ears with bass. What happens is that the bass totally takes over and drowns out any of the other audio sonics. So when you are in the mood for bass…Crusher delivers in spades. There is even a little air that escapes from the headphones that really adds to the authenticity of the bass thumping.
The feature is actually kind of neat and when I had others try it out, they were blown away by how intense the bass was as well as by the thudding sensation it created on their ears. Personally, I felt like I was walking around with a subwoofer attached to each ear when I had the slider way up.
So, do the Crusher headphones do just as well without amplification? Yes and no. On the whole, the headphones are extremely comfortable to wear, especially the ear pads, but the construction is a bit plasticky. The sound is just OK without the bass booster — the music sounds a bit hollow and empty with no real body. Turn on the bass and suddenly the music comes to life, but without it, the sound is just about average and not very balanced between the mids and highs. However, given the price point and the gimmicky nature of the slider, we really didn’t expect these to be anything more than they are — which is just fine.
The Crusher is a great everyday pair of headphones that delivers. You really can’t go wrong. The overall sound quality may just be average but the Crusher makes up for it in design, comfort, and a one of a kind feature. Throw into the mix a great price point and this is a solid contender in a flooded headphone market.
The Good: Comfortable, unique amplification feature, available in fun designs, budget-friendly
The Bad: Average sound quality, plasticky, average in-line mic sound quality