Anywhere you go, it seems like there’s always someone wearing Beats headphones.
However, if you’re just planning to get one yourself…
Let me tell you right now to reconsider.
That’s because Beats by Dre headphones are actually overrated.
And I can suggest better alternatives for you.
Keep reading to discover:
- How much it costs to manufacture each pair of Beats headphones.
- 3 better-sounding headsets that cost as much as Beats models do.
- 5 interesting reasons why Beats by Dre headphones are overrated.
- And this is just the beginning…
Why Beats By Dre headphones are overrated – 5 reasons
#1: They don’t sound as good as you think
With the device’s hefty price tag of almost $300…
I naturally expected to hear high-quality audio from it.
Honestly, I was even prepared to swipe my card for a Beats headset back then.
But when I actually tried it on…
I had to think twice.
See, thanks to my fair share of experience working in the music industry…
I know how to distinguish good audio from bad.
If you’re wondering which category Beats headphones fall to…
I hate to break it to you, but the brand creates unsatisfying audio.
That’s because Beats headphones have uneven sound frequencies.
Now, don’t worry if you’re unfamiliar with this yet, because I’ll explain the…
Importance of sound frequency in headphones
First, let’s talk about what sound frequency actually is.
In technical terms, it’s the number of vibrations a sound wave creates per second.
But simply put, you can think of it as the pitch of the audio.
That said, humans can hear frequencies from 20 Hz to 20 000 Hz (20 kHz).
And all sounds within this range are crucial to hearing well-balanced audio.
That’s because lower frequencies (60-250 Hz) represent the low-end or bass of your audio.
And those that are higher correspond to the mid-high portions of a sound.
Here’s a video that can help you understand frequencies better:
On that note…
The best headphones and speakers project all frequencies with the same volume.
If a portion of the range is way louder than the rest of the frequencies…
You’ll hear a distorted sound instead of the crisp and clear audio we all prefer.
Now, how does this relate to Beats headphones?
Headsets from this brand have unbalanced frequencies. Thus, they create distorted audio that’s very obvious to the trained ears.
That’s why Beats headphones’ bass is way too overwhelming compared to the mids and highs.
As a result, when you’re playing songs that are already bass-boosted…
Most sounds you’ll hear will be the low-end of the instrumental.
And you’ll barely hear the voice of the singers or the higher-pitched instruments in the song.
So, you should avoid Beats headphones if you’re not too fond of hearing bass. Or you simply prefer hearing balanced music.
As an alternative, you should try better-balanced headsets. Like the ones I’ll mention later in the next section.
#2: Way overpriced
I get it. We all deserve to buy expensive things for ourselves now and then.
But if you’re planning to buy Beats headphones to pamper yourself this weekend…
I only have 1 comment:
You should think twice.
See, $200 might not seem like a lot if you’re in the mood to treat yourself.
But tell you what, for a pair of headphones that don’t really sound good…
Spending that much isn’t worth it.
That’s because you can choose from dozens of better alternatives at this price.
And to give you some examples, here are…
3 better-quality headphones that cost as much as Beats:
Bose QuietComfort 45 ($279)
Let’s start with 1 of my favorite audio device brand: Bose.
Now, if you’re an audiophile, you might already be familiar with this company.
And sure enough, it deserves its popularity.
That’s because Bose devices are:
- Made with sturdy materials.
So, let’s talk about 1 of my favorite gadget from this brand:
The Bose QuietComfort 45 headset.
Call it “love at first hearing,” if you may.
But when I first tried these headphones, I was blown away.
And ironically, it wasn’t because of their loud volume.
Rather, it was because everything went completely silent when I put this headset on.
See, this pair of Bose headphones have world-class noise canceling properties.
So you won’t hear any surrounding noises when you use this device.
Moreover, this headset also has high-fidelity audio.
Or put simply…
These headphones equalize, or balance, the frequencies of the sound you’ll hear.
Rest assured, Bose can provide you the undistorted audio that those from Beats can’t.
Sennheiser PXC 550-II ($350)
Sennheiser is 1 of the best brands when it comes to audio devices.
But it’s not that surprising considering the high quality of its products.
Take the Sennheiser PXC 550-II device, for example.
See, this gadget can last up to 30 hours with just a single charge.
In comparison, the Bose model I mentioned earlier only lasts 24 hours.
And Beats Studio3 headphones can only stay ON for 22 hours per charge.
You can travel from London to Hongkong…
Then take the trip back without turning OFF your Sennheiser headphones. And you’ll still have some battery remaining when you’re back at your starting point.
But that’s not the only amazing part of this headset.
See, unlike most headphones…
This Sennheiser device has a smart pause feature.
So your headphones will automatically turn OFF your music when you remove them.
Furthermore, you can also use this device’s Google and Alexa with just 1 tap.
With that, it’ll be very easy to control your apps through your headphones.
Sony WH-1000XM5 ($398)
This device has 8 microphones designed to cancel the noises you don’t want.
So if you’re tired of headphones that can’t silence the conversation of strangers beside you…
This Sony headset will end your worries.
Not just that, out of all headphones mentioned in this article…
This pair is also my favorite when it comes to comfort.
That’s because it has soft leather that feels so smooth…
You’ll forget that you’re wearing headphones in the first place.
Moreover, this Sony headset has the newly integrated processor V1.
And this ensures that the audio you’ll hear is engineered to perfection.
Thus, minimizing or even completely removing any distortion from your audio.
See, these 3 devices show the quality that $200-$400 headphones should have.
So if you want to get the most out of your money’s worth…
I recommend getting from the brands mentioned above instead of Beats.
Editor’s pick: 7 Best Headphones For Sensitive Ears (Updated Guide)
#3: Low-quality materials
My impression when I first held a pair of Beats headphones was:
“Wow, this headset is nicely built.”
And let me guess. You also thought the same.
But what if I told you that Beats headphones are actually made with low-quality materials?
And you’re just being tricked into thinking they’re made with expensive items?
See, inside Beats headsets…
There are 4 metal pieces that account for 33% of the product’s weight.
And surprisingly, they have no other purpose than to trick you into thinking that:
“Beats headsets are sturdy products because they’re heavy.”
Honestly, when I read several articles regarding these allegations before, I was skeptical.
I had no choice but to tear down my Beats Solo HD headphones to verify others’ claims myself.
And when I did, as disappointed as I was to admit it, the allegations were true.
Beats headsets really do have metal pieces inside just to add to the device’s weight.
However, that wasn’t the only thing I discovered.
I actually took my time to inspect the rest of the Beats headphones’ components.
And to my surprise…
The total production costs of these devices were much lower than I expected.
See, with the help of a friend who works in the speaker industry…
I figured out how much each part inside Beats headphones was.
And here’s a graph that shows…
Our estimate of how much Beats’ materials cost:
|Category of materials||Price|
|All materials combined||$17.0|
So, the cost of each Beats headphones is less than $20 (without the labor costs).
However, the company has been selling it for more than $199, which is 20x the production price.
Recommended reading: Do Wireless Headphones Last Longer Than Wired? 5 Scenarios
#4: People use them as fashion accessories
You’ve probably heard of these celebrities:
- DJ Khaled.
- Nicki Minaj.
- Travis Scott.
And apart from all of them having millions of fans, they have another thing in common:
They endorse Beats headphones.
So, as a result, people buy headsets from the brand not because of their audio quality…
But because they’re:
- Used by celebrities.
See, Beats headphones aren’t any different from fashion accessories.
And most people only buy them to:
- Follow the trend.
- Show their social status.
- Support the celebrities that they want.
So, you shouldn’t assume that Beats headphones are good just because most people have them.
That’s because many only wear them to compliment their outfits.
You might also want to know: 5 Real Reasons Why Beats Headphones Are Bad
#5: There are cheaper, better alternatives
Here’s another reason why Beats headphones are overrated:
There are cheaper yet better alternatives out there.
As you know, Beats headphones can cost more than $300.
But really, you can get better-balanced models out there for almost half the price.
This WH-XB910N over-ear headset from Sony only costs $170.
Its quality is on-par with the higher-end Beats models like the Studio3 headphones.
That’s because this Sony device can last for 35 hours.
On the other hand, the pair from Beats can only last 22 hours at best.
Moreover, this Sony headset also has a clear bass sound comparable to Studio3’s audio.
And like Beats’ products, these Sony headphones also have:
- On-ear controls.
- Comfortable ear pads.
- Noise-cancelling technology.
So really, if you’re on a budget…
It’s better to save that extra $100 and go for the Sony headphones instead of a model from Beats.
That’s because there isn’t much difference between the features of the 2 devices anyway.