Which is better Bang Olufsen or Beats

Beats by Dr. Dre Solo Pro

The Solo Pro embeds itself more than ever in the world of the Apple operating system and basically gives the Android world the cold shoulder. Apart from the Bluetooth connection and proper headphone functionality, there is not much else to report for non-Apple users, and after all, others can do that too ...

First sight

First a sentence about packaging. Everything that somehow goes over the tables of the Apple managers is a little joy in terms of packaging. The box has a double door, which is filled with a blister, which on the one hand houses the supplied Lightning cable plus a snap hook on the one hand, on the other hand as a cover for a 16-page fanfold on which the basic operating steps are multilingual on a black background and white writing are printed. The headphones rest in a soft case laminated with felt. The cover could then also be attached to the luggage using a loop and the said carabiner. But the cuddly felt case can also easily find a place in larger bags.

The Solo Pro, available in two shades of blue, one red, white and gray as well as black, is a damn good-looking, finely crafted on-ear that is very comfortable to wear. Both sides can be folded in, which makes it a very compact unit.

The right folding bracket is also the on and off switch of headphones, which are downright stingy with operating elements. On the right, the outer cover functions as an oversized rocker switch that audibly mechanically clicks when you push it up to volume up or down to volume down. Press in the middle or on the Beats logo to pause or answer a call. A double click turns the music down. A longer press in the middle dims the music and waits for a Siri command, with which we are already immersed in the Apple cosmos.

Update all times

Anyone who is well equipped with Apple devices in the family and work environment is quickly greeted with welcome messages from all sides. The prerequisite is that iOS, iPadOS, macOS and watchOS are up to date. The corresponding versions were only available for delivery of the new Beats and Apple headphones. If the software of the Apple devices is up to date, the functions invented by the inventors basically run smoothly, even if one or the other seems to be a little bug-afflicted.

First of all, the good thing: if Siri is activated, the Solo Pro can be easily controlled via voice dialogue. If music is playing, it is dimmed and the conversation with Siri via headphones is extremely pleasant. Asking about the weather, reaching your loved ones by phone and expressing music requests was a success in the test phase with your hands in your pocket. You didn't need to touch your cell phone or headphones. Everything on call.

Tests with Facetime video calls went just as smoothly. Above all, the language quality should be emphasized here. But Skype video calls also went amazingly well. There was a slight delay in WhatsApp video chats. Basically, it can be stated that the Solo Pro proved to be very smooth, especially in connection with iOS devices. This also applies to the Apple Watch. Here, for example, the ANC or transparency modes could be easily switched, but the Apple Music work-out playlist could also be played on the treadmill.

What didn't really matter was the handover from a player such as B. iMac to iPhone. Here you had to go to the Bluetooth menu all too often in order to actively restart the Bluetooth connection. In general, the first tests under macOS Catalina, iOS 13.2 and watchOS 6.1 in concert with the Solo Pro showed that a few update patches are needed before the latest generation of Beats headphones run properly. We will therefore do a few more update tests in the near future.

Audio sharing

Very practical and a clear advantage for the Apple community is the ability to share music or video streams with another listener. The prerequisite for this is that the listener also has an Apple device with the latest iOS version and an Apple or Beats receiver with a W1 / H1 chip connected to it. The audio event can then be very easily shared via the notification dialog. Extremely practical, for example, if you want to watch a video together while traveling, or just want to have the same listening experience.

By the way, what the Solo Pro doesn't have is multipoint. So you can not like z. For example, with the latest Bowers & Wilkins headphones, keep two Bluetooth lines open in parallel, e.g. to take a phone call smoothly via iPhone while watching a video on an iMac.

Noise Canceling

We come to the “Noise Suppression” program, where the Solo Pro makes an absolutely convincing performance. On the left-hand side, the function key can be used to switch between ANC on and off or to access the transparency mode. Both the very effectively working noise canceling and the transparency mode were absolutely convincing. Regardless of which acoustic rooms I was in, the Beats Solo always very intelligently faded out the "interfering signals". What was striking here was the even damping of the acoustic events. A rumbling tram left no muffled flag of noise, Martin's horns and barking dogs were evenly turned down. Noise was not noticeable during ANC actions. On the other hand, the transparency mode was just as convincing. The Beats Solo Pro are virtually able to pass outside noise 1: 1 through the listener. Both in the stereo image and in terms of spatial depth, the Beats Solo Pro was able to follow tricky acoustic events such as conversations with strong background noises. The microphones and audio processing of the Solo Pro are capable of delivering astonishingly good ambient transmissions.

Sound

Headphones have not had much in common with the Beats sound of the first few years, at least since Apple was in charge. They should sound universal, and so it is not really surprising that the Solo Pro hardly shows its Dr. Dre genes, especially in the bass range. The buyers of a Solo Pro also like to listen to operas from time to time and do not necessarily have to physically feel the deep bass when experiencing stronger beats. In this way, the Solo Beats presented itself well-armed even when listening to a wide variety of situations. Listening to a live recording of a piano sonata by Franz Liszt from Carnegie Hall on the sofa without ANC is just as comfortable as consuming the playlist of the most popular pop numbers on longer tram rides through the city.

The change between ANC is audible, but largely corresponds to the acoustic effect when you sit in the concert hall, a door is open and noises from the foyer penetrate, which are then as good as gone when the door is closed.