The brand Skullcandy originated as a cheap alternative to Beats that catered to the design aesthetics of the skating community in the US. I remember using the Skullcandy S2PGGY-431 wired earphone a few years ago and found the sound quality to be amazing. In fact, the company launched its first pair of TWS earbuds, Indy in 2019, a good three years after Apple launched the AirPods. With the proliferation of TWS earbuds in recent years, a reticent brand like Skullcandy was also pushed to cater to the truly wireless category.
And, therefore it is no surprise that Skullcandy is now ramping up its TWS launches in India. The latest in its lineup is the Dime – which has the distinction of being the most affordable pair of Skullcandy TWS buds. They are priced at Rs 2,399.
So, the question is: does the Skullcandy Dime retain the signature Skullcandy sound at an affordable price? Let’s find out in our review:
Design, Fit and Comfort
Skullcandy has opted for a unique design for their Dime earbuds; the Dime TWS earpieces fill the cavity on the top of the case which looks very similar to the buttons on car keys. That said, the design is very impressive and looks different from other TWS earbuds in this segment. Skullcandy’s logo on the earpieces add a slick look to the charging case. The charging case has a lanyard loop, which makes it easier to hang the case to your bag. I found it very useful.
On the rear, you get a Micro-USB port to charge the case and there’s a small LED light to indicate the charging status of the case. The whole package is pretty lightweight and comfortable to hold and use. That said, you still can’t open the case with your thumb in one swift motion. In fact, the case, once shut, offers a very stiff resistance making it mandatory to use your second hand to open it with ease.
Also, I observed that when I try to close the case, it doesn’t get fully closed. Instead, you need to press the lid hard to close it fully.
As for the structure, the Skullcandy Dime TWS buds are made of plastic and have an average build quality. The top of the lid feels very weak. Our review unit for the Dime earbuds is Grey in colour but there are a variety of different colours that you can choose from – Blue Green, Light Blue, True Black or Red.
Skullcandy Dime despite having a unique design has a few caveats:
- When the earpieces are out of the case, the holes remain exposed due to which chances are high for dust to enter the charging case.
- Also, the hole completely exposes the charging pins of the case because of which you have to keep it to a dry place only. Otherwise, you might end up destroying the charging pins.
Coming to the earpieces, they are very compact and lightweight. They have a stem design but the stems are very small, whereas the earpieces have an in-canal fit. The Skullcandy Dime comes with medium-sized earpieces made up of silicon, which you can replace with the small or large ear tips present in the box. There’s a mic on the bottom of the earpieces for calls.
You don’t get a touch control function but a physical button control setup, which I found too cumbersome to use. Every time I pressed the button I had to press it against my ear causing a lot of discomfort. I preferred using my smartphone to control the playback instead. The earbuds have an LED indicator that lights up when the earbuds are taken out from the charging case. Furthermore, the Dime earbuds are IPX4 rated which means that you can use them during your workout hours.
Talking about the fit, the Skullcandy TWS buds are so compact and lightweight that it doesn’t feel heavy on the ears. I used it continuously for 80-90 minutes after which I found it uncomfortable to wear. Skullcandy says the Dime earbuds are noise isolating and I found that claim to be true.
Skullcandy Dime Battery Life and Connectivity
The company claims that the Dime TWS earbuds can last upto 3.5 hours on a single charge and 12 hours with the case. In my usage, I got a playback time of around 2.5 hours on a single charge at 80% volume. The earbuds can be fully charged twice from the case which gives a total playback time of eight hours. The case can be charged through the Micro-USB cable that is provided in the box. The Micro-USB cable is very small and takes almost three hours to fully charge the case. It would have been better if the company had decided to give a Type-C port. Many popular TWS earbuds in the 2k-3k segment come with a Type-C port and fast charging support, such as the Realme Buds Q2.
The Skullcandy Dime TWS earbuds come with Bluetooth 5.0 and support the SBC Bluetooth codec. Pairing process of the Dime earbuds through Bluetooth is easy and fast. Once you take the earpieces out of the box, the LEDs on earpieces start blinking till they are not connected. The Dime TWS earbuds get turned on as soon as you take them out of the box. Sadly, there is no app support for these earbuds which is now common in this segment. You can also use a single earbud at a time, if you so wish.
Sound and Mic Quality
The Skullcandy Dime TWS earbuds rock 6mm drivers that deliver a fairly detailed sound for the asking price. It focuses more on mids and highs and balances the sound beautifully. I absolutely loved the sound signature with vocals and mids being clearly audible.
From listening to ‘Vibe’ by Diljit Dosanjh to ‘Levitating’ by Dua Lipa, I absolutely enjoyed my playback time on these buds. That said, I felt the bass wasn’t as punchy. And, sadly you don’t get any customisation support to adjust the EQ, according to you. So, if you are someone who listens to a lot of bass-focused songs, you can skip this. Otherwise, the Skullcandy Dime produces a very good sound according to its price.
Coming to the mic quality, there’s a single mic on each earbud for calls. I found the mic quality to be below average. The stems are small and hence, the distance between mic and mouth is large. The other person had to struggle to identify the words you are using, no matter if you are in a quiet environment. It’s very hard to recommend this for the calls.
Should You Buy the Skullcandy Dime TWS?
The Skullcandy Dime is a good value for money product. They sound good, have a unique design, are comfortable and lightweight but lack too many other features which are easily available nowadays in the Rs 2,500 price segment. These earbuds neither support ANC nor have any app support, so you can’t customise the sound according to your preference. The Dime earbuds lack a Type-C port for fast charging support and the battery life is pretty average too. The mic is also of low quality. But if you are someone who loves the Skullcandy branding and their sound signature, go for it.
If you are looking for other options in a similar price range, then you should consider the Oppo Enco Buds or Realme Buds Q2 that have many features that the Skullcandy Dime TWS earbuds lack.
What do you think about the Skullcandy Dime TWS earbuds? Let me know in the comments section.
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