More than a year old, the Skullcandy Smokin Buds 2 Wireless may not command a ton of hype. But if an enduring cult of popularity indicates anything, it indicates that this wireless earphone packs quiet the punch. So, at a price of $99, how does it stack up to its competition?
Skullcandy Smokin Buds 2 Wireless Review
With a pair of spare eartips, a charging cable, and some riveting product literature, the Smokin Buds 2 Wireless doesn’t come with a ton of accessories.
Construction, while primarily utilizing plastic, still feels decent. The slim and supple neckband-design bends without breaking, and durable cables round out the impression of quality. This neckband is removable, allowing the earphones to be worn as an even more-flexible cable variation.
Charging is accomplished via the included micro USB cable, and the battery life is rated at 6 hours.
Skullcandy skimps on specifications for the Smokin Buds 2 Wireless. Which sucks for us gearheads here at MajorHifi, because we go nuts for comparing frequency ranges and speaker levels.
As a very consumer-oriented headphone, this particular model probably doesn’t have the greatest of specs, anyway – and it’s not hard to see why Skullcandy would want to keep the exact numbers under wraps. Fortunately, these headphones still possess a pretty decent sound.
In the low end, the sound of the Smokin Buds 2 Wireless offers a fair amount of detail. However, poor control results in bleeding on some tracks that concentrate on low-end frequencies. If there’s one thing that this earphone does best, though, it’s bass. With plenty of oomph, the beat stays powerful while never becoming downright sloppy.
While the low end offers a fair amount of detail, the mids seem to deliver even more. The sound here can best be described as meaty, with a surprising amount of accuracy in tow. Suffice to say, I never expected the Smokin Buds 2 Wireless to have such a decent midrange.
Just a little bright without waxing too strong, the high end balances detail with an overall smooth character. While missing some finer nuances, the upper end of the frequency range definitely jives with the strong lows and mids.
Plenty of depth and surprisingly okay placement combine forces to render a decent sense of soundstage. While it won’t blow you away like a good pair of Grado ‘phones will, it still offers an immersive experience that won’t be lost on casual listeners.
The connection on this headphone is solid – more solid than the connection on more expensive headphones. So if you’re worried about connectivity issues, this might be the horse to bet on.
What bass! Skullcandy always delivers a certain quantity of bass, while sometimes missing the quality aspect. This bass sports a little bit of quantity and quality.
For those who seek the perfect listening experience, or a pair of wireless reference earphones, models from Klipsch may offer more in terms of sound quality (particularly the $119 R6 Wireless).
Fitness dorks and outdoor lifestyle crazies will benefit more from the slightly more-expensive Jaybird X2 ($149). Unlike the Skullcandy Smokin Buds 2 Wireless, the X2 resist sweat by virtue of its design.
So who should consider the Smokin Buds 2 Wireless? Anyone needing an inexpensive wireless headphone with ample bass and good mids ought to consider this headphone. While the 6 hour battery life fails to truly impress, the lack of real weight and the presence of genuine sound quality do much to recommend it.
A strong performer in terms of build quality and sound, the Skullcandy Smokin Buds 2 Wireless supplies an ideal listening experience to casual listeners. With a detailed and accurate character, this earphone works well with any genre of music, while supplying a surprising level of depth and realism.