Skullcandy is a really well-known US (Utah-based) company known for its cool and funky designs in the audio segment, right from headphones to speakers. The company doesn’t come up on audiophile tongues, but neither does it seem to be aimed at that crowd. Today, we have their Bluetooth earphones, with a rather unique design. Let’s see how it sounds.
Build and Design: 7.5 / 10
Skullcandy Ink'd Wireless has a very interesting design. These earphones not only come in some funky colours (we got the black and grey camouflage effect) and yet they are uniquely designed like none other in this segment.
You have regular earphones connected to a flexible collar design which houses the battery, volume controls, and the Bluetooth unit.
The right or left earmarking are easy to miss, though the design guides one to wear it in a particular way so as to get the correct orientation with the controls being on the left.
The collar design takes a little while getting used to, and yet is very stylish. At first, it does seem like it isn’t a secure design prone to falling off but this isn’t the case at all. Most of the weight (24g total) of the earphone design is intelligently kept in the front section. A light jog or walk is fine, don’t expect to play vigorous sports or exercises with these as they’ll most certainly fall off. For vigorous sport activities, you probably need Sennheiser PMX 686G or Evidson Audiosport W6.
In the box
Skullcandy provides the bare essentials such as a USB cable and only two earphone tips (we received a sealed retail pack). One on the earphone itself and the other small one in the pouch. That’s an interesting choice, most earphone manufacturers give 3 sizes, nevertheless, my cousin who uses medium size ear tips was quite comfortable with the given ear tip size (assuming it is between medium and large size).
Performance: 6 / 10
We tested the Skullcandy Ink'd Wireless with our Android Nexus 5 phone with Poweramp Music Player.
Objectively: The sound is edged towards bass (no shocker there in this price bracket). Its natural sound is muffled with the bass, in general, enveloping the entire spectrum of sound. Therefore you’ll feel the lack of crispness and clarity. For instance, the mid-range sound such as the snares of the drums don’t at all sound sharp but boomy. Of course with the help of the EQ, the sound can be well-balanced.
Subjectively: I found the sound okay but didn’t like the boominess in it. It made my favourite tracks sound unclear and overly-bassy. However, I went ahead to rectify that as per my liking in the EQ and after correction, it sounded just right and I quite enjoyed the sound out of it.
To get the best from these, you’ll need to lessen the bass a bit (or not at all depending on your taste) and up the EQ towards the higher-end of the spectrum to get clear highs and mids.
Call Quality: 7 / 10
No complaints in this department. The sound was clear enough to hear the caller, the bassy sound didn’t distract much and the opposite caller could hear my voice clearly without any issue.
Battery: 7.5 / 10
The battery lasts long enough for you to forget about it. The rated battery is 8-hours, we got similar number of hours of usage when testing with the earphones. The tiny little battery does take long to charge completely though which is kind of surprising and annoying. However, if you charge every 2 days or so, you are good to go.
Verdict and Price in India
Is the Skullcandy Ink'd Wireless for you? For most, the answer is yes. It has great styling, nice colours and Bluetooth earphones on a budget of the street price of Rs 3,000. I, for one, didn’t like the non-clarity of sound, which can be easily fixed with heavy help from the EQ. But your personal mileage would vary.
Go for these if you like
- Cool styling
- Good (quality) flexible design
- Bluetooth earphones on a budget
Don’t go for these if you
- Don’t like muffled bassy sound
- Not interested in EQ tinkering to rectify the sound
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