Mix Master Premium Over-Ear DJ Headphones
Skullcandy is now in the upper bracket niche market with these high profile multi-purpose headphones. Mix Master Mike, a top-tier DJ, worked with the company to develop this colorful product lineup.
Reviews on the company’s web site and from independent reviewers are mostly positive. Read them in addition to this user report before you decide to purchase. If possible, buy from a store that has a generous return policy if the fit and sound are not to your liking.
One thing is guaranteed: Mix Master headphones are different. How will these differences appeal to you? Read our evaluation below.
From the outside in
The price is high, but is not excessive. The package design is stylish and impressive. The Mix Master Mike celebrity pedigree is notable.
Free USA shipping directly from Skullcandy is available. A lifetime product warranty represents strong company confidence. Black and six bold colors are available. Ample web site reviews plus an Ask & Answer FAQ are full of information.
The printed manual in English and French provides straightforward instructions on using the Mix Master headphones. Pay careful attention to page 6: Music Player Control, Volume Control, and Answer An Incoming Call.
The protective travel case fits perfectly and is exactly the correct size and shape. Articulated earpieces fold, twist, and rotate efficiently and effectively, as DJs require. Two different detachable cables are provided, plus a 1/4 inch audio plug adapter. All cables and fittings are robust and high quality.
One cable is long and coiled, with screw-in tips for maximum security. The other cable is shorter, pushes into place, and has in-line controls for iPhone calling plus track volume, play/pause, and track selection
A built-in mic on the in-line controller works fine for voice calls. I called my colleague Rich Lefko on his iPhone. He said “You sound okay for phone calls, Nemo, but you are coming in a little fuzzy, especially on the S’s.” I called my mother on her land line. She said “You sound like normal, John, but can you call back later? I’m watching the Cubs on TV, and they may get to score a run.” Both people sounded fine to me wearing Mix Master.
Build quality is massive. The fit on your head is comfortable, snug, and positive. Headband size adjustments are easy and stable. The replaceable ear cups are large, well-padded, and provide passive ambient sound isolation. Wearing glasses works fine when you tilt up the temple segments so they don’t become embedded into your head. Some transmitted sound from physical contact is evident, but this won’t be a concern in a DJ situation, or when listening to music at a reasonable volume.
Construction is hearty, but not fabulous. Read the Skullcandy web site reviews for an explanation about recurring cracks. These headphones will satisfy part-time and recreational DJs and recreational music fans, plus VOIP and Skype users.
How do they sound?
You will need custom equalization (EQ) when playing music from your computer, stereo system, DJ rig, and portable player. The sonic spectrum is out of balance without EQ set to your specific listening preferences. Below is the custom EQ I’m using on my MacBook Pro during our evaluation listening period.
Mix Master headphones are not forgiving when the audio source is less than optimum quality. This is typical with premium headphones of all types. I listened to over 60 tracks of Purchased AAC audio from the iTunes Store before I settled on ten tunes to test in detail. Here is the list. You won’t know most, if any, of them, but they combine for a comprehensive evaluation experience. All but one song were free downloads, which are available weekly on the iTunes Store.
Volume efficiency is unprecedented. Translation: Mix Masters are LOUD, and will blow your ears and brains out if you are not careful. High quality and large speaker drivers produce a decent sound at low volumes in these headphones, which is indicator of high-end engineering. Ear-destroying volumes are easy to achieve. Are you listening, DJs?
If you are a music lover and are not a DJ, Mix Master may be overbuilt and overly-versatile. Skullcandy’s Aviator over-ear headphones are an excellent and affordable lighter-weight alternative. If you are a DJ, you will appreciate the ability to mute the sound, lift and rotate the earpieces, and screw in the removable coiled cable on either left or right side.
Bass response is the kicker. It is not booming. That’s a good thing. Are you listening, competitors with overpriced and over-hyped celebrity cans? Mix Master has the cleanest, purest, smoothest bass we’ve ever tested. That’s a very good thing.
Continuing into and through the midrange, the sonic experience is completely satisfying. As with almost all over-ear sealed ear cup headphones except the aforementioned Aviator, treble presence is lacking, which is why the custom EQ is crucial, although not fully successful at the high end for demanding listeners.
Should you buy them?
Yes, if $300 won’t bust your budget.
Yes, if you like very colorful headphones. Matte and glossy black are also available.
Yes, if you work or play as a DJ in a setting that won’t physically stress Mix Master’s hardware. Reports are a bit too frequent of cracked frames that need to be replaced. I predict Skullcandy will fix this in future builds. The company is upgrading its high-end product line and image significantly with these headphones. Customer service and quality control are paramount
No, if you are an occasional music listener, or an audiophile, or if you don’t like firm pressure on your precious skull.
MyMac recommends Mix Master Premium Over-Ear DJ Headphones for their target purchasing audience. Our MyMac Review Rating is 8 out of 10.