Beats Solo3 Review:
Worth the Price?
Ultra Violet Beats Solo3 Wireless Headphones ($299.95)
Comfortable and lightweight; awesome connectivity with W1 chip; 40-hour battery life; fast charging; snug and secure fit for working out.
Made of low-quality plastic; similarly priced headphones have better sound.
Every now and again, I decide it's time to treat myself. After my favorite pair of headphones fell apart, I found myself ogling the Ultra Violet Solo3 Wireless Headphones ($299.95) by Apple-owned Beats Electronics. I'm a sucker for a stylish product, but are Beats more than just a pretty face?
After a couple months of use, I'll share with you how the Beats Solo3 measure up in five top categories and more importantly, if they're worth the price.
The biggest factor for me when selecting headphones, beyond even sound, is how comfortable they are. The vast majority of headphones make my ears ache after a couple hours. The Beats Solo3 headphones have small ear cushions, which concerned me. But, depending on the day, I've gotten anywhere from four to eight hours of comfortable use out of them.
Design & Style
While the Beats Solo3s are very pretty and sleek, they're also mostly made of plastic. At this price, I expect higher-quality materials. But in practice, I don't mind the plastic. The headphones are delightfully lightweight. They also have volume and callback functions built in, but they're touch based. Personally, I can never remember all the touch commands, so I default to my iPhone.
An awesome design element of the Solo3s is the W1 chip technology that Beats developed with Apple. This technology is a dream when pairing your headphones to your iPhone running iOS 10.3 or later. A simple message pops up, letting you know the headphones want to connect. I tap Connect, and I'm ready to play my music. The chip makes it easy to switch from one iOS device to another too.
The most impressive part of these headphones is that they deliver on their promise of a 40-hour battery life. I've charged my headphones once since buying them. When I first bought the headphones, I used them obsessively for the first three days. Then I checked the battery life and they were still 95 percent charged. Another battery-life feature is five-minute Fast Fuel, which claims you can get three hours of playback after only five minutes of charging. And it works, which allows me to use my Beats as they're intended: wirelessly.
There are other headphones you can buy for $300 with better sound quality. Apart from this price disparity, the Beats Solo3s have a crisp immersive sound that uses each earphone to separate the instruments and layers of the song. In general, songs with various instruments and deep base sound amazing on the Beats Solo3s.
I've been impressed by the Beats ability to stay on when I'm jostling about. I usually do my cardio on a treadmill, and I find myself forgetting my Beats Solo3s are on my head. I can get lost in my happy place, tune in to the music, and go. This was the cherry on top of my Beats purchase.
Final Score & Verdict
To be frank, I know I bought these headphones from an emotional place—I wanted that Ultra Violet hue! The 40-hour battery life sealed the deal though, giving me a logical justification for this emotional purchase. Having heard a lot of negative comments about Beats headphones, my expectations were moderately low. The price tag is certainly steep, but it's an investment I was willing to make. Overall, Beats Solo3 Wireless is a fantastic pair of headphones that delivers on its claim of 40-hour battery, comfortable wear, high-quality sound, and stunning style.
Conner Carey is a feature web writer at iPhone Life and a contributing writer for Love U magazine. Her work has been published on Art Parasites Berlin and Chronically. She holds a bachelor's in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing and resides in Fairfield, Iowa. You can find her personal blog at connerleecarey.com or follow her on Twitter @connerleecarey.