Beats Solo3 test finds Apple W1 audio chip boosts battery life & simplifies pairing

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in General Discussion
The Beats Solo3 headphones are virtually identical in appearance to the Beats Solo2, but the W1 chip in the newer model boosts battery life and simplifies the pairing process with an iPhone 7.









Japanese-language site Macotakara did the comparison, and has examined aesthetics of the new headphones, the W1 chip as it pertains to device pairing, and overall audio performance.



They have discovered that battery life of the Solo3 hits 40 hours, instead of 12 in the Beats Solo2. The gains do not appear to be from a vastly larger battery, as the weight and the volume of the headphones are essentially the same.



The site examined the W1 pairing technology in the new headphones, in conjunction with an iPhone 7. Connection is apparently as simple as Apple claims, with the user only needing to hold down the power button on the headphones to pair with the iPhone, followed by a tap in the iOS 10 pop-up window announcing the presence of the headphones.



Mactakokara does not appear to have done any range testing on the headset.



Apple launched the Solo3 Wireless in tandem with the iPhone 7. At the same time, Beats previewed two sets of earbuds, the BeatsX and PowerBeats3 Wireless, both of which ship before Christmas.



All three of the announced Beats products sport Apple's proprietary W1 wireless chip, also found in AirPods. The W1 chip not only simplifies wireless syncronization of equipped devices, but may be behind claims of extreme range with W1 devices.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 15
    polymniapolymnia Posts: 1,055member
    Beats acquisition looks better every day. 
    Solijustin freitascalipscooter63nolamacguylordjohnwhorfinidreystanthemanwatto_cobrajony0
  • Reply 2 of 15
    polymnia said:
    Beats acquisition looks better every day. 
    why? because improved battery life and faster pairing means you can listen to subpar audio quality faster and for a longer period of time?
    sphericlordjohnwhorfinuraharatycho24
  • Reply 3 of 15
    BxBorn said:
    polymnia said:
    Beats acquisition looks better every day. 
    why? because improved battery life and faster pairing means you can listen to subpar audio quality faster and for a longer period of time?
    Yes.
    sphericjay-tlordjohnwhorfinuraharastanthemantycho24jony0
  • Reply 4 of 15
    calicali Posts: 3,494member
    The innovations coming from Apple are amazing. Oh wait, the media claims nothing was announced at the keynote.

    Also wasn't there an article here on AI claiming Beats couldn't figure out how to extend battery life for new headphones? Must have been another rumor.
    lordjohnwhorfinwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 15
    BxBorn said:
    polymnia said:
    Beats acquisition looks better every day. 
    why? because improved battery life and faster pairing means you can listen to subpar audio quality faster and for a longer period of time?
    audiophiles can be butthurt for eternity, but that won't change the fact that Beats is the #1 headphone/accessory maker for iOS and is very profitable. profit being the air corporations breathe. profit matters.

    you can rest assured that when apple made the Beats purchase they knew they were doubling down on wireless -- Schiller recently said they were working on it while designing the Watch. 

    so despite what the armchair executive naysayers babble on about, Apple continues to show the world how its done. take note.
    edited September 2016 idreywatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 15
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • Reply 7 of 15
    it says something when one company who has been pushing the trend for wireless makes a better (range, ease of use, and battery management) then the standards made by the group pushing it in the first place. 

    are beats the best- heck if I know- I hear well but am not an audiophile. I have a pair through the educational promotion (only cost $100 and I am not sure I would have paid $300--again not an audiophile). They did stop working after a year but then because of apple care they were replaced; apple sent me two new working ones in the same box. I am totally selling them to get the new 40 hour, easy to connect beats.
  • Reply 8 of 15
    On the topic of wireless audio, I recently came across this company mentioned in an audio tech article:
    http://elevenengineering.com/home/

    They have external adapters through their "Skaa" brand, but I don't have any hands-on (ears-on?) experience with them.

    The adapters (including one for lightning) look a little clunky, and I don't know if Apple's W1 chip shares any similarities with their stuff. Just thought the tech was interesting.
  • Reply 9 of 15
    irelandireland Posts: 17,771member
    Micro-USB, waa-waa.
  • Reply 10 of 15
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,302member
    cali said:
    The innovations coming from Apple are amazing. Oh wait, the media claims nothing was announced at the keynote.

    Also wasn't there an article here on AI claiming Beats couldn't figure out how to extend battery life for new headphones? Must have been another rumor.
    These might have a much larger battery despite the similar weight to the previous model. Wasn't there a teardown of the older one last year showing they added filler blocks to make them feel more substantial (and thus premium?) than they otherwise would have? Perhaps battery has replaced dead-weight filler, or materials used in assembly are simply lighter than that used previously, allowing for added battery weight. I'm sure someone will soon spec the battery in any event.  
    edited September 2016
  • Reply 11 of 15
    macguimacgui Posts: 2,062member
    I wonder if these Beats can move from Apple device to Apple device as can the AirPods.

    Those phones have a clean look to them but they look like on ear or supra-aural and not circumaural, my preference. I'd like to see a good review of audio quality. Convenience and long battery life aren't enough to get $300 from me. That kind of ching can be some pretty decent corded cans.

    They won't be high end cans and BT would be the bottle neck. But some decent sound can be had from good files, even if limited by BT. Otherwise I tend to think that these will be typical bass heavy cans with only fair audio quality.
  • Reply 12 of 15
    So, the "Beats headphones won't get an upgrade because they can't improve the battery life or functionality" post was utter bullshit then. What analyst was quoted for that?
  • Reply 13 of 15
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,302member
    evilution said:
    So, the "Beats headphones won't get an upgrade because they can't improve the battery life or functionality" post was utter bullshit then. What analyst was quoted for that?
    No one claimed it to begin with.  I think you and perhaps others got confused by the claim Apple/Beats wouldn't be rolling out a new version of their premium Studio Wireless headphones this year with (lack of) battery improvements being one of the reasons cited. 

    cali said:
    ...wasn't there an article here on AI claiming Beats couldn't figure out how to extend battery life for new headphones? Must have been another rumor.
    No sir, you misread a rumor story. It only concerned the Studio Wireless. 
    edited September 2016
  • Reply 14 of 15
    crowleycrowley Posts: 9,111member
    The Beats Solo3 headphones are virtually identical in appearance to the Beats Solo2, but the W1 chip in the newer model boosts battery life and simplifies the pairing process with an iPhone 7.
    I'm pretty sure the W1 enhanced pairing process applies in software throughout all iOS 10 devices, not just the iPhone 7, as well as watchOS 3 and macOS Sierra.
  • Reply 15 of 15
    polymniapolymnia Posts: 1,055member
    BxBorn said:
    polymnia said:
    Beats acquisition looks better every day. 
    why? because improved battery life and faster pairing means you can listen to subpar audio quality faster and for a longer period of time?
    Ignoring the bait to enter an audiophile discussion about a non-audiophile product…

    The reason the Beats acquisition keeps looking better is this: Instead of this W1 chip tech being available in only one set of buds (Apple-branded AirPods) we also get 3 other products in different formats with the same technology. The convenience features (easy pairing & long battery life) are compelling for a device in this (non-audiophile) category. I use PowerBeats2 everyday during the workday and when walking my dog in the evening. My main complaint about these buds is 1. battery life and 2. not easy to swap between my various Apple devices. W1 would address both concerns nicely, freeing me up to be upset my the MicroUSB plug instead of Lightening. I love the ever-more-insignificant 1st World tech problems I am bedeviled by  ;)

    With wireless headphones taking the lead from wired headphones in this product category, Apple having an exclusive technology edge certainly strengthens the value proposition in this growth category.

    Being a shareholder, I see opportunity to make money in the headphone category.

    I like that.

    edit: at the risk of dipping my toe into the audiophile discussion, I do have an extremely nice sound system at home which is where I experience audiophile-quality music. I'm not interested in audiophile-quality from wireless headphones.
    edited October 2016
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