SOL Republic Master Tracks review

5 stars
S$319.00
Light, comfortable, with well-balanced sound. And they don’t make you look like a divvy. What more do you want?

SOL (Soundtrack of Life, yeah?) Republic has some deeply Californian observations to make about headphones as shorthand for personal philosophy.

Stick on a pair of Master Tracks, though, and it’s obvious the company is serious in a Good Way. This is as balanced, punchy and enjoyable-sounding a pair of headphones as you can strap on at this money.

'Virtually' Indestructible

Master Tracks comes to pieces entirely, so headband, cables and ‘sound engines’ (the earcups and driver housings) are easily interchangeable. Avoid the more sudden colourways and these are among the most discreet, nicely proportioned headphones around. The judicious choice of materials mean they’re light, heard-wearing and comfortable too – although you can spot the vital word in SOL Republic’s claim that they’re ‘virtually indestructible’.

Three button remote – but Androids aren't welcome

Got a recent Apple device? The three-button remote (music has volume, pause/play and skip, and calls get answer, hang up and mic) is full-function. Android, BlackBerry and Windows are restricted to audio and mic. There is, naturally, a choice of colours.

More after the break...

Start your X3 Sound Engines

£170-ish buys you Master Tracks with X3 sound engines – the V8 and V10 HD sound engine alternatives are less expensive. Technical details and differences are hard to come by, but having heard and enjoyed the X3s we’d find it hard to recommend any penny-pinching. You’re not short of on-ear choice at the sort of price, but Master Tracks make a really strong case for themselves.

They’re deep enough and fast enough to keep bass-heads happy, balanced and dynamic enough to satisfy the rest of us and have the sort of space, poise and detail to their sound to put them right near the top of a headphone connoisseur’s shortlist.

Verdict

They’re deep enough and fast enough to keep bass-heads happy, balanced and dynamic enough to satisfy the rest of us and have the sort of space, poise and detail to their sound to put them right near the top of a headphone connoisseur’s shortlist.

says

SOL Republic Master Tracks

As chic and subtle or as loud and garish as you want, the Master Tracks are a big, exciting and well-balanced listen.

The SOL Republics won't make you look like a divvy. That's up to you, kids
5 stars
S$319.00
Built to last
Lots of customisation options
Really impressive sound
Hit-and-miss remote functions for non-Apple stuff
sound
design
build
OMG!
WTF?
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