Crusher has been one of Skullcandy’s signature lines for quite some years now. Heck we covered the wired Crusher model back in 2014. Since then they have gone wireless and changed up the design a bit. Now this brings us to the Crusher ANC. This pair of musical cans gives better access to adjustable bass, active noise cancelling and even lets you adjust sound to your ears. Does the Crusher ANC deserve a spot in the land of ANC over-ear headphone contenders?
Now depending on what color, you decide to choose whether you want attention or not. They have a stealthy black colorway which will help you blend in or you can go out and grab what they call Deep Red. To me it leans more towards a light burgundy but in any event, I like the pop of the color and you don’t see any headphones with this splash of paint. Best Buy also has an exclusive Black/Tan colorway.
They are compromised of plastic all throughout the headset with a soft cushion under the headband and plushy memory foam style earpads. Earpads feel nice and haven’t caused any discomfort over extended periods of time. Even wearing them extensively for the past couple months they look as good as when I took them out the box. Speaking of taking out the box, Skullcandy made the Crusher ANC to be able to fit or enjoyed in various scenarios. Earcups rotate in and out if you want to perhaps lay flat around your neck. For better storage they are also collapsible and can be thrown in your bag and/or the included carrying case.
Crusher ANC has a bevy of buttons and controls for you to adapt to on these headphones. Right earcup houses three clickable buttons that are for volume control which double as track skipping if held down while the other middle button is for play/pause and answering calls. There is also a 3.5 mm audio jack and Type-C port for charging. They support Rapid Charging so you can get 3hrs in 10mins of charge. Flip over to the left ear and you get the power button and slider for the haptic bass. Power button can also let you turn ANC on/off and get battery level via the indicator lights right next to it. They will also give you sync status as well.
Included with the Skullcandy Crusher ANC is a 3.5mm audio cable, Type-C cable, and carrying case.
Features / Audio
Skullcandy is touting a few features with the Crusher ANC that should catch your attention. First up is Personal Sound. It allows you to customize the headphones to your exact hearing. It will take you through a various amount of audio cues to gather how your hearing is.
Be advised you need to do this in a very quiet place. First time I did with Skullcandy and they had me in a soundproof booth. I setup my own pair later in my household. It is a nice option to have and can be toggled on and off. Its not the first time I seen sound profiling done on headphones but it’s a welcome addition for the Crushers. This can all be done through the Skullcandy app which is available for iOS and Android.
Active Noise Cancelling is now on a pair of Crusher headphones and tries to do a good job of blocking outside distractions and still maintain a clean sound profile. You can also activate Ambient sound if you need to hear things or people around you by taking three fingers and pressing it on the left earcup.
The star of the show and what will seriously compel you to these headphones is the Sensory Bass. Mixing this with the ANC gives you a rumbling uncanny experience. And this isn’t just me trying to boast about it as I had friends and even PR folks from other companies try it and be surprised at the outcome. It’s hard hitting, and you will seldom be able or even want to try it at its max.
Battery life is slated to last 24 hours but that’s all depending on your ANC and Sensory Bass usage. I always had ANC on, and the bass had a moderate level. I believe averaging maybe 19-20hrs. See which isn’t bad but the issue and gripe with the Crushers is they don’t have an auto showdown. That means they will be on till you turn them off.
They also work with Tile which if you are already a user is an easy step of just adding it to the app and the list of your current devices. They use a very low amount of BT to help locate your headphones if misplaced.
The fact you can adjust the sound on a personal level and crank up and down the bass presents a very different audio experience and will vary for everyone. On the default sound profile and sensory bass turned down you still get crisp vocals and a thump of bass. Listening to “Nina” by Rapsody I can feel her lyrics word for word without them sounding muddy. DMX “What’s My Name’ is a fiery track that help you get feel what Skullcandy is trying to give you in the bass department via their signature sound profile. Crusher ANCs are using 40mm drivers but also use a vibrating motor of sorts to provide you with feedback and bass.
Skullcandy Crusher ANC includes Bluetooth 5.0 and Qualcomm AptX-HD if you have a compatible Android device. I used them mostly with the OnePlus 7 Pro.
I rocked out with the Crusher ANC for a good month and change using it in a wide range of scenarios. I utilized it on my daily train commutes and even on a road trip to NJ one weekend via bus. Noise cancelling did a great job of blocking outside distractions, but I felt I have gotten better isolation from say Sony or Bose. These is also a noticeable hiss when no music is playing or even when its real low.
I love that these headphones use Type-C and use rapid charging, so I seldom had to juice them up, or if needed my phone charger was always nearby.
These are stellar for game or movie watching if you want to get immersed in your media content. I had them plugged into my PS4 controller and played some The Division 2, Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 and Tekken 7. Movie wise I watched some Avengers: Endgame of course and even some Baby Driver which has some intense driving scenes. Yes the sensory bass worked even wired which is a plus.
It’s been quite the experience using the Crusher ANC by Skullcandy. While its ANC is not bad and battery life is fine, its killer feature will be the Sensory Bass. The hiss can throw you off a bit and its ANC aren’t the strongest out there. Especially with a price point of $320 it isn’t much lower than say Sony or Bose if you can find any deals. I think these would fare better between $250-270. Of course, mixing ANC and Sensory Bass gives you an experience you simply can’t get from other headphones. If you are an extreme lover of bass and like it cranked up give these a listen.