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Skullcandy Push Wireless
Skullcandy has a few pairs of wireless earbuds now, but today we’re checking out the Skullcandy Push wireless earbuds. This category is already full of crappy, cheap Amazon products with just a handful of quality contenders to take on the heavy hitters, so which camp do the Push true wireless fall into?
Editor’s note: this post was updated on March 21, 2022, to address the product’s discontinuation. Please use the table of contents to see a selection of alternatives.
Who should get the Skullcandy Push True Wireless?
- Anyone can pick up a pair of these earbuds; they fit well and have great battery life.
How well built is the Skullcandy Push True Wireless?
If you were hoping for a premium pair of buds, the Push Wireless is going to disappoint. The charging case doesn’t try to be anything other than just a case. There aren’t even magnets to keep the case shut; instead, it relies on simply clicking shut. On the inside, there’s a perfect cutout for each earbud which holds them nicely and it even magnetically snaps the earbuds into place which is super satisfying.
Learn more: What makes a good set of in-ears?
Unfortunately, the case is also bulky by true wireless earbud standards. Easily not as pocketable as what you’ll get from something like the Beats Studio Buds or even the Anker Soundcore Life A1 true wireless earbuds. In short, this isn’t a well-made case, but it is definitely well designed. It never opens accidentally and there’s no fumbling around to get the earbuds to fit properly thanks to the internal magnets.
The earbuds are bulky like the case, yet they still fit rather well in my ears. The method of inserting them into your ears requires a small twist which helps the tiny wing tips lock these into place. While they might not be great at isolating outside noise, they do a good enough job of blocking out incidental noises from a local cafe. Only occasional noises came through like a loud laugh or the crash of plates. Each earbud also has a single large button on the side. These are for playback controls and for turning each one on or off individually.
Most important of all, they stay in no matter what I do thanks to Skullcandy’s FitFin wing tips. Whether I’m doing laundry or walking to the local burrito spot, these make a solid everyday companion. Skullcandy says these buds are water-resistant, but they don’t seem to have an official IP rating. So best to be mindful of that if you plan on using these exclusively at the gym or during any kind of strenuous activity.
How do you control the Push Wireless?
Playback controls all work perfectly as well. A single push of either button pauses or plays music, while double taps on the right and left earbuds to raise and lower the volume, respectively. Then you can hold each one down for two seconds in order to skip between tracks and a triple tap on either ‘bud will access the personal assistant of your device. While they work fine, it’s not the most pleasant experience as you’ll clearly hear the loud, cheap plastic button being pushed right in your ear. But hey, as long as it works right?
Does the Skullcandy Push stay connected?
The Skullcandy Push true wireless earbuds are rocking Bluetooth 4.2 and don’t skip a beat when connected to my Pixel 3 smartphone. Only when I was testing range did the music skip, but that’s the point of the test. Anywhere within roughly six meters is fine, and only once you add a wall or two will you encounter problems. Even when watching videos, there aren’t any noticeable lag or lip-sync issues.
Somehow, Skullcandy seems to have nailed one of the hardest things to get right: the connection. While the Push Wireless doesn’t have any of the convenient auto-connect features of W1/H1 products or the seamless switching between devices, it’s surprisingly on-par with general connectivity. The earbuds don’t auto-pause when you take them out of your ear so that’s something to keep in mind.
How is the battery life of the Skullcandy Push True Wireless?
Skullcandy claims a battery life of 6 hours of constant playback, which is great for true wireless buds and towards the upper end of products we tested. In our objective testing, we were able to squeeze out 6 hours, 21 minutes of constant playback with output peaking at 75dB(SPL). So that’s pretty much spot on with what Skullcandy claims.
Learn more: How long do AirPods last, and can you make them last longer?
Once you run the buds dry, you can pop them in the case which holds one extra charge cycle—not great considering how big the case is, but better than nothing. On the bright side, these charge via USB-C.
Does the Skullcandy Push have noise canceling?
With the Skullcandy Push, you have to rely solely on passive isolation to block out noise. You won’t find any active noise canceling, which is good news for your battery life. It’s bad news if you want to eradicate low-pitched hums, like on airplanes. If, however, you want to remain aware of your surroundings, but just dial back the high-pitched ambient sounds, the Push will do that.
Hold up! Something’s different:
This article’s frequency response and isolation charts were measured with our old testing system. We have since purchased a Bruel & Kjaer 5128 test fixture (and the appropriate support equipment) to update our testing and data collection. It will take a while to update our backlog of old test results, but we will update this review (and many others!) once we’re able with improved sound quality measurements, isolation performance plots, and standardized microphone demos. These will be made obvious with our new chart aesthetic (black background instead of white). Each new mic sample begins with the phrase, “This is a SoundGuys standardized microphone demonstration …”
Thank you for bearing with us, and we hope to see you again once we’ve sorted everything out.
How does the Skullcandy Push True Wireless sound?
As far as sound quality is concerned, the Skullcandy Push isn’t bad at all. Of course, there’s the characteristic low-end bump you’ll find in the frequency response of any consumer headphones. The bass response is exactly what I look for in a pair of buds.
Lows, mids, and highs
Of course, it isn’t as precise as some higher-end pairs of cans and depending on the song, mids can be a bit hard to hear, but overall it’s better than I was expecting. A good example of this is in the song Far Nearer by Jamie xx where the bass hits are there, but it makes it hard to hear some of the synths in the background.
On the flip side, I don’t have a single complaint about the highs. The fingerpicking squeaks and scratches throughout the song Dirty Paws by Of Monsters and Men have just the right amount of clarity without sounding too loud or “shrill.”
Can you use the Skullcandy Push for phone calls?
As far as the microphone is concerned, it isn’t great with with Skullcandy’s earbuds. Microphone quality has a drop off at around 200Hz which means that if you have a lower voice it’s not going to come through as loud as it should be. For a sample of this, you can check the video up above where I have a voice sample but fair warning, it doesn’t sound great. So if you’re looking for a pair of buds for phone calls these might not be for you.
With the Skullcandy Push True Wireless discontinued, what should you buy?
The Skullcandy Push True Wireless is discontinued but you have other options today. If you like the Push and its price point, consider the Skullcandy Grind Fuel. This costs $99 USD and allows you to access any smart assistant with your voice, so long as you download the Skullcandy app. The buds have an IP55 dust and water-resistant build, so you can engage in just about any activity without risk of damaging the earphones. If you want the same features with a more secure ear hook design, check out the Push Active instead.
Alternatively, the Sony WF-C500 costs just $68 USD and features an IPX4 rated build. You get a slew of comfortable ear tips that you can swap out and the sound quality is very good once you get the right fit. Like most wireless earbuds, you get just SBC and AAC codec support, no aptX. You can take full advantage of Sony’s 360 Reality Audio through the mobile app (iOS/Android), and use the EQ module to adjust the sound.