Beats Studio3 Headphones with iMac

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by colodane, Oct 27, 2017.

  1. colodane macrumors 6502a

    colodane

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2012
    Location:
    Colorado
    #1
    I'm in the market for some bluetooth headphones and taking a serious look at the Beats Studio3. But I'm having trouble finding information about them. I would really like to hear from someone who has seen or tried them or has experience with similar Apple products.

    Much of my usage would be with my iMac. Most everything I've read focuses on usage with iPhones. Does anyone know what functions will work with an iMac? I assume that there are controls on the headphone for pause/play, volume, Noise reduction, etc. Will these controls work with an iMac?

    I must say that Apple's online documentation is incomplete and vague. No photos of any controls on the headphones and cannot seem to download any user manual or quick start guide which would probably answer my questions.

    Thanks in advance for your inputs.
     
  2. Tmelon macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2011
    #2
    All of the functions (play/pause, volume, etc.) on the Studio 3's will work on the Mac. I only have the Studio 2's, but I'm assuming this wouldn't be any different.
     
  3. colodane thread starter macrumors 6502a

    colodane

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2012
    Location:
    Colorado
    #3
    Thanks, Tmelon, for the input. That's what I was hoping to hear.

    Actually, a couple days after I made my first post here, I did find a couple of online reviews that answered many of my questions. Based on what I read, I went ahead and ordered the Studio3 directly from Apple. It should arrive this coming week and I'll post a review here in case others have an interest.

    Thanks again!
     
  4. colodane, Nov 4, 2017
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2017

    colodane thread starter macrumors 6502a

    colodane

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2012
    Location:
    Colorado
    #4
    I’ve had the Beats Studio3 headphones for 3 days now and have decided to keep them. I am using them with my 2017 iMac running Sierra as well as an iPad Mini 2 running iOS 11 and an iPod Touch 6G running iOS 10. They work with all three devices.


    For an Apple user the biggest attraction of these headphones is the easy pairing across several devices. They pair easily to the first device and then are recognized by any other Apple device (Mac or iOS or tvOS) that is on the same Apple ID. After that, all you need to do is select the “connect” button in the bluetooth menu of the device you want to use them with. I’m quite happy with the pairing performance. Several reviews of other headphones indicate problems when trying to pair with Apple devices.


    Sound, appearance and comfort are certainly subjective, but I’m satisfied on all three counts. I picked the “Shadow Gray” model. They seem quite comfortable, but I haven’t worn them for over an hour at a time. Heat buildup would probably be an issue if you were wearing them when exercising, however.


    I was somewhat apprehensive about what the bluetooth range would be, but in practice it is not any issue. I live in a 3 level house on a ¼ acre lot. With my iMac in the upstairs office in one corner of the house I have solid listening range on all three levels of the house as well as in 90% of the yard. Only at the far end of the driveway by the mailbox do they cut out. So can use them when mowing the lawn with the actual source device inside the house. Pretty impressive.


    Also impressive is the battery life. 22 hours with the noise reduction active and 40 hours with noise reduction turned off.


    I haven’t done any side-by-side comparisons of noise reduction of different brands, but it seems to work well. Actually, the passive reduction due to the sealing of the soft covers w/o the noise reduction turned on is pretty good. I would probably use them in this mode around the house where I do actually want some awareness of noises such as the doorbell, etc. The quality of the sound reproduction seems about the same with or without the noise reduction turned on.


    They come with an audio cable for use w/o bluetooth. I tried it on all three of my devices and the sound is equally good when using the cable. However, the on-headphone controls for volume, track skip and pause/play do not work and are replaced by a small set of control switches in the cable itself.


    The headphone controls take some getting used to, but do work. In addition to those mentioned above, you can also call up Siri from the headphones and converse with “her” via the built-in headphone mic. That worked OK. I’m not a Siri fan, so it won’t get much usage.


    I must say, however, that Apple’s documentation for this product is lacking. Both the included “user manual” (about 2 paragraphs total if you exclude all the language translations) and the online material aren’t adequate to describe actually how to use the controls. Some trial and error were needed. Also, all of the instructional material and marketing information seems to be oriented to the iPhone user rather than Mac or iPad type folks.


    I looked seriously at two other bluetooth headphones with noise reduction before making my purchase decision: The Sony WF1000XM2 and the Bose QuietComfort 35. All three are in the same $350 price class with similar features. I listened to the Sonys at a Best Buy store. Other than that, all my comparisons were made from the marketing literature and specs. The Sonys sounded fine but I wasn’t sure about pairing with Apple devices. There were issues mentioned about that in the Amazon reviews. I did an online chat with Sony tech support to ask about pairing with Apple devices and the support rep seemed confused and I didn’t come away with a warm feeling. So I ended up going with the Beats.


    From what I could figure out by reading, the Sonys might have somewhat better noise reduction and the Bose is perhaps more comfortable. But for use with an Apple ecosystem I went with the Beats and so far am happy with my decision.


    I should also comment about the Sennheiser HD 4.40 headphones. I was sorely tempted to try these - only $142 at Amazon. No noise reduction but good specs otherwise. They also have a model HD 4.50 with noise reduction for $200. Supposedly pair with up to 3 devices and 25 hour battery life. If they sound at all decent, they would perhaps be best value right now. Anyone using them?
     

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3 October 27, 2017