Get **Rhythms Off-Key: A Comprehensive Review of the Beats Solo 4 Headphones**

Between the worlds of the over-ear and the insular, the earbud, the on-ear headphone – the best of both worlds – can claim to create a zone of crystal-clear presence, while at the same time preserving the portability of wired headphones. The Beats Solo 4 carries that swagger so familiar to Beats by Dre. But does this pair of on-ears have what it takes to win? Is it a triumphant blend of style and substance? Or should the Beats Solo 4 have watched a few more hours of rehearsal before it went out on stage and went ‘live’? Read on to find out… Under the spotlights and alive with activity, the Beats Solo 4 is a pair of over-ear headphones with an on-ear soul. It comes in several colours: gold, black, graphite, silver, matte gold and rose gold. Our test unit is silver, but rose gold is the most eye-catching.

**Unboxing the BEATS SOLO 4: First Impressions**

With the Beats Solo 4, the first thing you’ll notice is how good it looks. Available in an array of colourways (Matte Black, Slate Blue and Cloud Pink), these headphones look as much like a fashion accessory as they do a playback device. It doesn’t stop there: the box contains a carrying case, as well as USB-C and 3.5mm audio cables, which point towards a dedication to build quality and haptic satisfaction. But it’s impossible not to hear some discords when you look a little closer.

**Crescendo of Features, Diminished by Flaws**

What touches users is the Solo 4’s 50-hour battery life and on-headphone controls that balance simplicity with staying power. What’s sour is the lack of active noise cancellation and a colouration of sound – particularly noticeable with an acoustic back-catalogue – and the fact that Android enthusiasts are the odd man out: the product is best enjoyed on iOS while many features subside in the other ecosystem.

**Price Notes and Availability**

Priced at $199, and further discounted to $149 by certain retailers, the question of value comes to the fore. Is paying a premium worthwhile for the brand, or are these Beats the sound of an expensive bell?

**Design and Wearability: The Solo’s SOLO**

When it comes to style in design, Beats is seldom off-beat And the Solo 4 continues that tradition, beautifully melding style with build quality. But when it comes to comfort, it doesn’t hit the mark for the bigger end of head sizes – common for people of South Asian descent – often pinching at the larger end of head sizes, and it doesn’t quite hit the note for extended wear either.

**Audio Quality: Missing the High Notes**

It turns out that you can get a fair bit deeper into audio performance, though. Beats has traditionally been about beefing up the bass, and in that regard the Solo 4 sounds pretty good. But it has a crap soundstage, and a shallow one to boot (so any acoustic crossover will sound like a puddle of music compared to a song). If you listen to a lot of rap and hip-hop, the Beats might still appeal – but the purveyors of classical or live instrumentation might find their ears pining.

**Software and Integration: Harmony with Devices**

Duet with the Solo 4 is smoother than with iOS devices and its paired-back Android experience remains frustratingly missing. The lack of active noise cancellation sings a sad song, and it’s definitely noticed in a category where so many handsets flaunt this feature. For Apple fans, the supported features such as ‘Find My’ and switching across devices might well assuage feelings of trepidation.

**Battery Life: The Long Play**

The Solo 4’s 50-hour battery life is a hymn to durability; fast-charging provides an added finish line, letting you keep listening without pause.

**Facing the Competition: A Battle of BEATS**

But compared with today’s contemporaries – say the . Or the more recently released from Jabra – the disparities in what a few hundred dollars in hardware goes towards become glaring in the Solo 4. It’s just not a very catchy sound at this price point. And most of the technology’s alternatives play to far more satisfying octaves – often at a lower price.

**The Verdict: Should You Tune Into the BEATS SOLO 4?**

For those loyal to the Beats brand, the Solo 4 could be an old familiar song. But for music lovers and utility-minded buyers both, the musical marketplace sings solos of a much greater composition. Before settling on these Beats, you might want to shop around the symphony to find earspeakers that better harmonise with your tastes.

**Decoding the BEATS: A Final Note**

The Beats Solo 4 is a product with lots of contrast inside it. It’s still a classic Beats statement – it’s visually exciting, and the battery life is terrific. However, when you look at audio quality and feature set next to the price, it begins to sound like a different song, even if it comes from the same Beats catalogue. In a lively marketplace for music, the Solo 4 is a song that we’ve heard many times before. And the audience is growing restless.

Jun 10, 2024
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