Struggling to stand in the crowded mid-range price segment
The American audio company, Skullcandy’s, the successor to the original Indy True Wireless earbud released in 2019, Skullcandy Indy Evo comes with improved battery life, ambient sound, IP55 rating and some other improvements. Priced at Rs 5,999, the earphones enter the competitive mid-range in the 10K price segment with options like Creative Outlier Air, JBL Tune 125TWS and even Sony WF-XB700. However, Skullcandy Indy Evo plays a cheaper price tag than the other three options we mentioned. On paper, these earphones are probably the most attractive as they pack a lot of high-end features. Let’s find out now if Skullcandy Indy Evo is a good choice for this price range.
Construction and comfort
Loosely following the design language of its predecessors, the Skullcandy Indy Evo also has a stem or pipe-style design with canal buds that sit securely in the ear with silicone tips and stability ear gel. The company offers three different sizes of silicone tips (S, M and L) and two sizes of stability gel wings (S and L).
Despite being primarily made of plastic, the earphones look and feel well-made and have a distinctive characteristic to them, with the characteristic Scalcandy design language, however, it is not at the top. The housing on the back of each earbud plays the Scalcandy logo, and this surface doubles as a capacitive touch panel that can be used to activate music playback, calls and certain modes. We will cover the functions of the touch panel in depth in the next section.
Fit, in our experiments, has proven to be extremely safe and snug due to the wide variety of silicone tips and gels as well as the ergonomic shape of the buds. The buds are also quite light, so they do not cause any discomfort even after listening for hours. The buds can easily be used for intense activities like gyming and running because of their snag fit, and since they are rated IP55, which means sweat or splashes will not harm the buds. Snag fit also leads to rather decent passive isolation.
Dark gray and light gray with dual-tone and matte finish have the same design language as the buds of the charging case. While this is certainly not one of the most pocketable cases we have seen, it stays flat and should not go out of pocket too much. On the front of the case, there are four LED lights indicating the battery level of the case and at the bottom, there is a USB Type-C charging port. We had a complaint with the case that the lid would not close securely if the buds had stability gel. However, the magnets hold the buds quite securely overall.
Overall, Scalcandy Indie Evo has quite good build quality and impressive yet exquisite design. The buds are available in a variety of color options, including True Black, Chill Gray, Pure Mint, Deep Red and Blue. We’ve got the True Black variant for review, so keep in mind that while the design and looks are shown small in our review unit, other colors, such as blue, pure mint, and deep red, look quite vivid.
Rich in features like ambient listening mode, touch control, three EQ presets (music, podcast, and movie), voice assistant support, and more, Skullcandy Indy Evo can easily catch the eye of potential buyers due to a number of features on offer. . The most interesting is the ability to switch between three different EQ presets. Movie mode features punchy low and adds dynamic effect to the action scene, while podcast mode brings back lows and heights and brings specialty to the middle, while music mode provides a moderate listening experience with a bold sound profile.
The way to toggle between these modes is by using Touch Control – these presets have two small taps and one tap and hold (long tap). Now, if you want to cycle between ambient sound on and off, the control to do that is a small tap and a tap and hold on to any one earbud. Other controls are – double-tap the bud to pause / play or answer / end call, tap and hold the right earbud to avoid a track, tap and hold the left key to go to the previous track, tap the left to decrease the volume and To increase the volume, tap right and finally tap Bud three times to activate your device’s voice assistant. Oops, that was a mouthful. Needless to say, mere number controls can be quite confusing and difficult to remember. We often find ourselves checking the manual to re-verify how to perform certain functions. However, the touch controls are responsive and work quite perfectly for us for most of the test period.
Earphones are compatible with a rather basic companion app, however, the app is quite barebone. It provides you with a tutorial on touch gestures only, lets you toggle ambient listening mode and check if the EQ preset is currently active. We didn’t use the app too much because there’s nothing in the app that can’t be achieved through earbuds.
Skullcandy Indy Evo, like many other Skullcandy audio products, comes with tile tracking packing that lets you locate each earbud through the Tile app. You can also do a loud beeping to get out of the earbuds so that you put it in the wrong place but to help you find it. Additionally, the earphones are powered by Bluetooth v5.0 and come with a wireless range of about 10m or 33 feet. The connection was stable throughout our testing process, and there was no lag or avoidance in the audio. Earphones, unfortunately, only support the standard SBC codec. The company mentioned that they come with AAC support, but despite being able to do the same thing with other earphones that support AAC, we were unable to transfer our Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra to AAC code.
Additional features of the Skullcandy Indy Evo include IP55 dust and water-resistant rating, USB Type-C charging, mode mode (both buds act as masters that allow you to use them individually), and a large battery rated by the company for 30 hours. Life. (6 hours in the bud, and 24 hours through the charging case). In our experiments, at about 50 percent volume, we were able to extract the juice from the buds ourselves for about 5 hours, while the charging case easily surpassed them 4 times, leaving some batteries extra. You also get fast charging support, with 2-hour listening facility with earbud 10-minute charge.
Using the default ‘Music’ EQ preset, we found that the Skullcandy Indy Evo plays a dark sound profile. A dark sound profile is one where the bass and logos are the loudest in the decibel range and the following frequency ranges drop to the loudness level, resulting in a ‘dark’ sound which is not as pleasant as ‘warm’. We tested the audio performance within the default music preset. During our experiments, however, we found movie mode to be more bass-heavy than music, so if you enjoy a punchy base response, just switch to movie mode.
In the default music EQ preset, the base response is controlled but still shows some punches, all without making the voice and instrument irresistible in the middle. However, fans of EDM, rap, hip-hop and Bollywood may ask for more thumps from the base. The bus response to these earphones does not follow the path taken by many Scalcandy earphones and headphones, which can sacrifice overall detail although it does hinder the bus response as much as possible. We liked that Skullcandy chose to keep the alloy reaction tight and accurate. Tracks such as Bad guy By Billy Ilish The bass was controlled with a good punch, and the voice was still clear and easily understood.
That being said, mids, especially mid-mid and high-mid, these earphones are slightly recessed (there is no error in the diameter response) and because of this, some tracks may lack drive and power. Inside Pull me down By Dream Theater, The lead guitar is remarkably dull-sounding and lacks detail in instrument reproduction. The heights are somewhat worse and instruments like claps, hi-hats and shakers fall behind the mix and lack detail. Therefore, it is not so easy to recommend these earphones for those who listen to rock and classical music.
On the other hand, stereo imaging is quite good in these earphones and they work well in the correct instrument and voice position. The soundstage, as expected in the ear, is limited. The quality of the microphone, the integrated microphone was satisfactory, however, listeners on calls sometimes complain that our voice has faded a bit.
The last row
Priced at Rs 5,999, the Skullcandy Indy Evo is part of the highly competitive mid-range pricing segment in the true wireless earphones segment. So should I buy these earphones? If you are buying these earphones for the primary purpose of listening to your valuable audio collection, then you should go with Creative Outlier Air which is priced at just over 1K. However, if you are looking for a pair of earphones with good battery life and features with solid build quality and fit, then these earphones may be a good choice for you. While the Skullcandy Indy Evo is certainly feature-rich and well-built, they fail to stand out in the truly wireless segment of the densely populated mid-range because of the medium noise.