Powerbeats by Dr. Dre earphones

Dr. Dre Powerbeats review: 'Sports' headphones that are sturdy but sometimes uncomfortable

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  • User Reviews (2)
  • Buy Now 6
Monster Powerbeats by Dr. Dre
  • Monster Powerbeats by Dr. Dre
  • Monster Powerbeats by Dr. Dre
  • Monster Powerbeats by Dr. Dre
  • Expert Rating

    3.50 / 5
  • User Rating

    2.50 / 5 (of 2 Reviews)

Pros

  • Good design and build quality
  • Clear sound quality
  • Good on-ear clamping force

Cons

  • Uncomfortable and stiff earpieces
  • Bass is a little weak

Bottom Line

Monster's Powerbeats by Dr. Dre sports earphones stick to your ears well and are sturdy enough to survive a few accidental drops - but we found them a little uncomfortable. The headphones' sound quality isn't quite worth the $229 asking price, though - it's a little weak on bass. Outside noise isn't blocked, but if you're exercising outdoors this is a good thing.

Would you buy this?

  • Buy now (Selling at 6 stores)

  • Apple Official Store Beats by Dr. Dre Powerbeat... 199.95
  • Apple Official Store Beats by Dr. Dre Powerbeat... 199.95
  • BEATS Studio 2.0 Red Headphones 398.00
See all prices

The Monster Powerbeats by Dr. Dre earphones are aimed at sportspeople and other active types (they are endorsed by the infamous basketballer LeBron James), and they do a good job of holding onto your ears when running or moving about quickly. They look good and are well built, but we found them a little uncomfortable when we tested them out.

Monster Powerbeats by Dr. Dre headphones: Design and comfort

The Powerbeats are over-the-ear earphones — they hang off the top of your ear with a rubber-padded hook, but their weight is evenly distributed and they don't ever feel heavy. Try as we might, we weren't able to shake them off — they even stayed on during a rather ill-advised handstand. The earphones themselves don't extend especially far into the wearer's ear canal, so there's no seal against outside noise. If you're exercising outside this is a good thing, since you can hear what's going on around you, but it does mean you'll need to turn your music up louder to compensate for ambient sounds.

Monster ships the Powerbeats by Dr. Dre with three sets of silicon ear-tips — small, medium and large. We would have liked to see a few spares included, since they're not expensive and the original set will probably get sweaty and disgusting quickly if you're exercising. The silicon ear-tips weren't as comfortable as we were hoping during exercise, and there were a few moments when we had to adjust the Powerbeats to keep them comfortable. The sturdy design is good for the headphones' longevity, but it means they are hard to adjust and some users might find them uncomfortable.

Monster Powerbeats by Dr. Dre headphones: Sound quality

The Powerbeats earphones are clear and have reasonably detailed sound. We don't think they're quite deserving of their $229 price tag, but they did a good job of representing the detail in our high-quality Apple Lossless test music. They're equally at home with iTunes-downloaded MP3 and AAC music files, which don't sound too harsh or too obviously lo-fi. Treble is forward without being fatiguing, and mid-range is strong without losing detail. Lower bass notes are largely missing, though — a side effect of the earphones' open design. The easiest way to boost bass in headphones is to seal them against outside noise, which isn't advisable if you're running on busy streets or playing sport. This does mean that the Powerbeats do occasionally sound a little flat when playing bass-heavy music — our Kanye West and Jay-Z could have done with a bit of extra kick.

The Monster Powerbeats by Dr. Dre headphones have an in-line microphone/volume control that also has a multipurpose button for answering calls or changing music tracks. We put it through its paces with an iPhone 4 on a couple of calls and plenty of music — it worked well but we did find the centre button a little hard to find occasionally, accidentally pressing a volume button instead.

Monster Powerbeats by Dr. Dre headphones: Conclusion

Monster's Powerbeats by Dr. Dre headphones are sturdy and have reasonably good sound quality. Some users might find them uncomfortable though, and they're a bit lacking on the bass we thought they'd be well endowed with. You can guarantee they'll stay on during even the most strenuous exercise, though.

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Read more on these topics: Dr. Dre, headphones, sports headphones, Monster

Ken joe

1

I don't know why they say bass is weak. I've tried several
Brands and the bass is superb. Highs are clean and crisp.
And as far as the over the ear hook issues some have
I've encountered none. I'm a certified IASCA judge and
I know sound. There are no issues with sound quality.
I tried brands at 2.5 x the cost and I prefer power beats.

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Rob B

4.5

1

Pros
excellent stability and ability to hold position in ear. Very good sound all around, does lack in bass range, but to untrained ears they sound amazing.
Cons
For trained ears these phones will lack in overal sound quality, especialy for the price. fragile cord. evidently a rough warranty system, although I have confirmed many people having no problems except timeliness on returning warrantied items
• • •

I bought them from the beats store in NYC on 10/10/12 and they have performed excellently ever since...i did break them in. hopefully I never have to return to that store with any issues, but alas at least i have a store to hold responsible...i believe the only strictly beats store in the world. I also paid 150 dollars for em.

Stephen

0.0

2

Pros
Buyer Beware - Garbage in a Box.
Cons
Dre Beats does not warrant it's products from defects and substandard quality.
• • •

These headphones were used lightly less than 10 times before one ear piece stopped playing sound. I contacted Dre Beats and, although the product was defective, they refused to warrant the product. I would highly encourage potential buyers to purchase a different and more reliable and reputable brand of headphones over the Dre Beats line. Dre Beats is garbage dressed in nice packaging. Your money is better spent on Bowers and Wilkinson or some other reputable brand.

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