The Skullcandy Crusher is perfect for a very specific subset of people: those that want the most powerful bass possible, even if it means other aspects of the sound suffers, and that have medium to small heads. If you don't fit into every part of that definition, there are much better wireless headphones available or headphones of other types.Editor's note: The Skullcandy review was updated on January 18, 2022 to include additional details on which products we would recommend to a friend to help with your buying decision.
Skullcandy Crusher Review
Pros: Very powerful bass
Cons: Uncomfortable for larger heads, mediocre noise isolation, average clarity
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|Pros||Very powerful bass||Inexpensive, powerful bass, effective active noise cancellation, comfortable||Good sound quality, good active noise cancellation, less expensive than competitors||In inexpensive, reasonably good sound quality, portable||Fairly portable|
|Cons||Uncomfortable for larger heads, mediocre noise isolation, average clarity||Lacks some brightness in mid and vocal ranges, headband may be to large for smaller heads||Not comfortable for those with larger ears/heads||Poor noise isolation, not comfortable for large ears/heads||Mediocre sound quality, not very comfortable, poor noise isolation|
|Bottom Line||Great if you have a small to medium head and love bass over all else, but otherwise not worth the money||Impressively inexpensive given the sound quality, active noise-canceling performance, and comfort||An impressive combination of good quality at a reasonable price that makes for a good value||Offers a decent listening experience for a relatively low price, but certainly doesn't stand out in any aspect||Sound quality and user experience doesn't live up to those of other, comparably priced models|
|Rating Categories||Skullcandy Crusher||Soundcore Life Q20||JBL Live 650BTNC||Tribit XFree Tune||Cowin E7 Pro|
|Sound Quality (30%)|
|Noise Isolation (25%)|
|User Friendliness (10%)|
|Specs||Skullcandy Crusher||Soundcore Life Q20||JBL Live 650BTNC||Tribit XFree Tune||Cowin E7 Pro|
|Manufacturer reported battery life (hours)||40||40||30||40||30|
|Measured weight (ounces)||10.1||9.3||9.1||10.3||10.6|
|Included case||Lined drawstring pouch||Lined drawstring pouch||Lined drawstring pouch||Semi-hard case||Semi-hard case|
|Earcup padding cover material||Leatherette||Leatherette||PU Leather||Leatherette||Synthetic protein leather|
|Charging cable length (inches)||N/A||40"||47"||N/A||N/A|
|Microphone for voice?||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Onboard buttons||Volume, play/pause, forward/back, bass||Volume, multifunction, power, NC||Volume, play/pause, forward/back, noise cancelling, voice assistant, power/bluetooth, answer/decline/mute calls||Volume, play/pause, forward/back, noise cancelling||Volume, play/pause, forward/back|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Skullcandy Crusher has a lot of character with its over-the-top bass driver and imposing skull logo. Still, unfortunately, it doesn't back that character up with impressive wireless performance.
The Skullcandy Crusher produces an average clarity. Most music sounds good and crisp, but complicated melodies and very high or very low notes can sound a bit muddled. Think of the cheap earbuds you bought at Best Buy on a whim, and that's the level of clarity we're talking about here.
However, the Crusher isn't focused on clarity; it's focused on bass. It has exceptionally powerful bass, maybe even too powerful. If you turn the bass all the way up, the headphones literally shake on your head. If that's the kind of experience you're looking for, then these are the headphones for you.
The Crusher suffers a bit here. These headphones do not offer active noise cancellation, which handicaps them in providing good noise isolation. However, they can muffle most sounds to an ignorable lever, but you will hear most everything going on around you, at least to some extent, when wearing these headphones.
The Crusher received a fairly average score in this metric, but its score doesn't tell the whole story. If you have a medium to small head with correspondingly medium to small ears, you'll likely find these headphones to be quite comfy. However, the minute we put them on people with larger heads, we got comments like, "Dang, my ears are itchy," and, "These things really are skull crushers!"
The Crusher was again around average in this metric. It has standard play/pause and volume up/down buttons. To skip tracks forward and back, you must hold down the volume buttons for 3 seconds. This felt more cumbersome than pressing buttons multiple times.
These headphones fold down relatively small and weigh 10.1 ounces, just around the average. However, they come with only a drawstring pouch as a carrying case, which isn't very protective.
Should You Buy the Crusher?
Unless you just love the Crusher's over-the-top bass, it is a poor value and not our favorite pair. The Skullcandy Crusher offers very powerful bass, but not too much else. If you're bass obsessed, you may love these headphones; otherwise, there are much better options available.
What Other Wireless Headphones Should You Consider?
We suspect some will be drawn to the Crushers because of their lower price tag, and we feel you. However, for the price, we think there are better options available. The Soundcore Life Q20 is less than half the price and performed better significantly overall and in every metric. With better sound quality, noise cancellation, and comfort, it would be hard to choose the SkullCrushers over the SoundCore. If your budget can stretch, the Jabra Elite 85h offers more for a much lower price than the high-end models and is one we believe is worthy of consideration, even if they missed winning any awards.
— Max Mutter and Steven Tata
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