Decked out in more colours than an episode of Art Attack, the Skullcandy Hesh 2.0 range is striking, but can it match that with the sound?
The Skullcandy Hesh 2 headphones are essentially an update to an older version, not just visually but also under the hood. It would be fair to say that the originals took a certain amount of flak for marring original design with sound quality that may not have lived up to the hype.
This time round they're back with a vengence, sporting the same insane collection of colours, patterns and styles but this time Skullcandy have revamped all the internals in the hopes of producing a pair of sub-£100 cans that can sound up there with the best headphones around (B&W P3 we're looking at you).
Skullcandy Hesh 2.0: Design
With so many possible iterations it's hard to make a definitive judgement on them, cosmetically there will almost be something that will catch your eye but ultimately it's what they feel like that counts.
The majority of the range uses a glossy plastic build with a slightly more durable rubberised coating on the headband. There are several matte options but even then they can still look worth slightly less than their pricetag.
Skullcandy Hesh 2.0: Audio quality
Skullcandy wants the Hesh 2.0 to be the flagship of its new Skullcandy Superior Sound range of headphones and its efforts are to be truly commended.
Having admitted openly that the focus was to improve the clarity of vocals and its respective range, it's clear that the brand has lived up to its promise. Classical and indie pieces in particular benefit the most from this with some tracks we listened too sounding truly impressive.
Sadly this increased clarity and depth of sound has come at a price - the bass has suffered somewhat, whilst still be very much present it feels as though Skullcandy has somehow put a leash on those deeper notes leaving you at times wanting a little more clarity.
Skullcandy Hesh 2.0: Durability
As we mentioned earlier, thanks to its mostly thick plastic build these feel durable and would certainly survive being regularly thrown around and being stuff hastily into bags.
Skullcandy Hesh 2.0: Comfort
Thanks to the circular design of the pads these will almost certainly not sit well with some, it can on occassion lead to audio leakage and the uncomfortable feeling that the headphones are never truly sitting properly on the ears.
That said this won't affect everyone and the headband feels secure enough that there won't be any slipping. The cable is interchangeable and attached on one side which helps minimise the inconvenience of tangled wires as well.
Skullcandy Hesh 2.0: Verdict
The updates Skullcandy has made are truly impressive and if you can get past the styling then you'll find that they can produce an incredibly mature sound when listening to vocal heavy pieces.
That said, the bass has suffered and while still very much present it lacks the clarity and depth that you'll find at the same price tag. All-in-all however a very solid pair of mid-range headphones that certainly punch above their weight in the audio-quality department.
Skullcandy Hesh 2.0 availability: Available now
Skullcandy Hesh 2.0 price: £64.99