Here at Headphone Review we pride ourselves on not just reviewing headphones from well-known companies like B&O and JBL, but also from smaller companies that might be just starting out. The latest of those companies to come by our desk is Wicked Audio, which has come out with the Wicked Audio Endo headphones.
Wicked Audio has traditionally marketed itself as offering extremely affordable headphones at a great price — but this time around they’re going one step further with a feature not many others offer — triple battery protection, which is targeted at solving the issues the likes of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 have seen in recent years.
But triple battery protection alone doesn’t make a great pair of headphones. Are these worth the $45? We put them to the test to find out.
The first thing they’ll notice about the Wicked Audio Endo headphones is their design, and it’s not bad. The headphones are really light, which is great for those sensitive to the weight of a pair of headphones, but it also makes them feel a little cheaply built — something only further highlighted by the fact that they’re mostly built out of plastic. Really it feels like the headphones could break pretty easily.
On the right earcup, you’ll find the volume controls, power button which also controls playback, microUSB port, and 3.5mm aux jack — which is nice for using the headphones in wired mode in case they run out of battery.
The headphones come in black, and on each earcup you’ll find a slightly camouflaged Wicked Audio logo, which is a good look. We liked the sleek look the color-scheme gave the headphones, despite the fact that they really don’t feel premium in any way.
In the box, you’ll find the headphones themselves, along with a microUSB charging cable and an aux cable. Unfortunately, you won’t find any carry case or pouch, which is a bit of a bummer considering the headphones’ on-ear form-factor which lends them to being a portable.
On-ear headphones have a rough time when it comes to comfort, and they often need a lot of padding in order to stay relatively comfortable. Unfortunately, Wicked Audio hasn’t really taken that on board with the Wicked Audio Endo — and the comfort level of the headphones really suffers.
Neither the ear cups nor the headband offer much foam, and the foam that is there is a little tough — meaning that the headphones get uncomfortable both on the ears and on the top of the head. We found that the on-head discomfort was worse than the on-ear comfort.
It’s not all bad news. The headphones are really light, which is helpful in the comfort department. Not only that, but the clamp is relatively light.
In general, the Wicked Audio Endo headphones have a long way to go in the comfort department. We would have liked more foam in the earpads and the headband, and better quality foam would help too.
The Wicked Audio Endo headphones are a bit of a mixed bag in the sound department, and unfortunately the good aspects do not outweigh the bad.
Let’s start with the bass response, which really isn’t all that bad. The bass is generally deep and powerful, which is helpful on songs like Eminem’s Lose Yourself and Katy Perry’s California Girls. It’s not overdone either — mega bass fans may want a little more, but the bass that is there is enough for most and still sounds relatively natural.
The midrange is also relatively well-tuned. There are enough low-mids to help the headphones sound quite warm, while there’s a slight cut in the high-mids to help give the headphones that clean sound. It’s not overly natural, but it sounds good, and that’s what matters for a pair of consumer headphones.
The high-end could use a little boost, but it’s well-tuned and sounds better than most other on-ear headphones in this price range. Some of the super high-end frequencies are a little soft for our tastes, but it’s not a deal-breaker by any means.
Unfortunately, there are some deal-breakers though. For starters, the Bluetooth connection is relatively noisy, which you’ll notice when you first connect your headphones to the listening device. If that was the only problem, it wouldn’t be so bad, but the headphones also distort really easily. Now, that’s not as noticeable when you’re listening to music, but if you listen to podcasts or audiobooks it’ll be immediately obvious — and irritating.
In general, the frequency response of these headphones is good — but the noisy Bluetooth connection and the fact that they distort so easily are big problems.
The performance of the headphones isn’t all that good either. The Bluetooth connection is fine — it’s Bluetooth 4.1, and through that you’ll get around 10 meters or 33 feet of range, depending on things like obstacles.
The battery, however, could be better. While it’s clearly super protected, the battery capacity is just below par. It’ll offer up to 8 hours of use on a charge, and that’s just not enough for a pair of on-ear headphones. Often wireless in-ear headphones do better than that, and they have less space to work with.
We really wanted the Wicked Audio Endo headphones to be good, and while they’re not bad at this price, there are too many issues with them. Sure, the frequency response is generally good, but the sound is tarnished by an easily distorted driver. Not only that, but the headphones are cheaply built and uncomfortable.
So what should you buy instead? Well, the Creative Sound Blaster Jam headphones have been largely well-reviewed, have a Bluetooth connection, and come at the same price as the Wicked Audio Endo headphones.
The Wicked Audio Endo headphones could have been excellent if not for a few issues. There’s room in the sub-$50 on-ear wireless headphones market for someone to come in and totally dominate. That company, unfortunately, is not Wicked Audio.
|20Hz – 20kHz
|Active noise cancellation
|Total harmonic distortion
|Rated input power
|Maximum input power