We reviewed the Skullcandy Burton Crusher Evo headphones last week and were suitably impressed with them, although the design is very niche. This week we had the Skullcandy Burton Push Active earbuds to check out and once again Skullcandy showed that they continue to offer value for money.
DESIGN, COMFORT AND FIT
I’ve reviewed a lot of true wireless earbuds in my time and although most of them have improved the comfort and fit issues that plagued earlier versions there is still the distinct feeling that they may fall out at any time. The Skullcandy Burton Push Active avoid this feeling thanks to their hook design.
The Push Active, as you may have guessed from their name, are designed with the active person in mind. They sit inside the ear with a hook coming up and over the front of the ear with the hook securing them like I’ve not felt before in a TWS earbud.
Each earbud has a physical button on the underside of the earbud, which is not all that easy to press if you are in a rush or busy running. Being not touch sensitive, instead requiring a “click”, the button is often difficult to get the first time. I much prefer a touch sensitive button and I’m not entirely sure why Skullcandy did not include them in these given they are still not on the cheap side at RRP$179.95.
The function of these buttons can be altered using the new Skullcandy app – SkullIQ.
Once again, the Burton version of the Skullcandy Push Active earbuds include the Naughty Nature design language with the right earbud featuring the animal print and the left a plain grey colour. The charging case is also Burton Naughty Nature themed with the lid featuring the animal print design.
The storage case adds an extra 34 hours of playback to the battery life, on top of the 10 hours stored within the earbuds already. In my use the time quoted by Skullcandy was about right but I had their SkullIIQ voice assistant turned off and that saves some battery life.
I never thought it was a good idea to try and make your own digital assistant, and still don’t. All Skullcandy’s assistant does is control the earbuds such as volume up, down, play, pause etc. Why they just couldn’t build in Google Assistant or Alexa control for this I don’t know.
The Skullcandy Burton Push Active earbuds sound as you’d expect a $179 pair or earbuds to sound. If you compare them to Google Pixel Buds Pro or Sony LinkBuds S you will be left sorely disappointed but you do have to remember the price difference.
The Skullcandy Push Active earbuds offer really good mids and highs but the bass is a bit lacking when comparing it to a set of earbuds of similar pricing – the JBL Live Pro+. The JBLs will cost you a bit more though, do include active noise cancellation, and although they are relatively secure in the ear they are in no way anywhere as secure as the Push Active earbuds. In the JBLs defence no TWS earbuds I’v tested (and I’ve tested a few) are as secure as these from Skullcandy.
In the end I was suitably happy and impressed with the sound quality out of the Push Active – they are the most comfortable and secure earbuds so that does need to be taken into account. Although ANC is always nice to have, the noise isolation from the really good fit in the ear resulted in very little noise from outside getting in.
The higher end earbuds will cost you a higher end price – if you’re an audiophile look elsewhere – I’d recommend something such as the Astell&Kern UW100 earbuds. If that is your want but if you want a decent sounding set of earbuds that will stay in your ear, comfortably, for ALL types of activities then look no further.
The Skullcandy Push Active True Wireless earbuds use the Skull IQ app unlike the Crusher EVO which use the basic Skullcandy app. The Skull IQ has a lot more options but I’m not entirely sure how useful they are. You can use Skullcandy’s own voice assistant to control the earbuds and you set that up in here.
The app also allows you to change the functionality of the difficult-to-press buttons on each earbud and, best of all, change the equaliser, with a custom option being one of the choices. The app will also tell you the battery percentage of each earbud so you know when you need to charge them.
My biggest bugbear with the app though is the permanent notification it leaves in your notification bar for the Skull-IQ voice detection. Very annoying, and yet another reason not to use their voice detection.
Who should buy them?
Extremely active people who need absolute security that their true wireless earbuds will never fall out without chopping an ear off first. The security that the hook over the ear offers cannot be understated.
As for the sound, for a sub $200 set of earbuds they sound about that. They offer decent sound without encroaching on the audiophile space. If you buy these earbuds you will not lack a decent sound quality though. As with many of the cheaper TWS earbuds the bass is a bit lacking but considering the size of them it is good enough for most folks.
If you are buying these earbuds chances are you are not sitting quietly at the desk listening to music but instead flying around the great outdoors so a bit of lacking bass is not an issue. I can recommend these earbuds for the active users with decent sound and a fit that will not let you down.
The Skullcandy Burton Push Active Naughty Nature styling may not be for everyone and for those folks there are the standard Push Active earbuds. Both can be purchased from all good retailers and from the Skullcandy website for RRP $179.95.