Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds Review: High on Quality, Low on Price

HomeGadgetsSkullcandy Smokin’ Buds Review: High on Quality, Low on Price


  • Eco-friendly design with 50% recycled materials.

  • Comfortable fit, ideal for active use.

  • Bass-heavy sound perfect for modern music.

  • Impressive 20-hour total battery life with rapid charging.

Skullcandy, a familiar name in the audio gear industry, introduced its latest offering in the earbuds category – the Smokin’ Buds, back in September.

With a price tag of Rs 7,999 these TWS are positioned at the higher end of the budget range.

This addition to Skullcandy’s lineup comes amidst stiff competition in the wireless earbuds market, promising a range of features designed to appeal to various users.

I approached the Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds with a mix of skepticism and curiosity.

This review will explore whether these earbuds stand out in a crowded market and justify their pricing.

Pros and Cons



Affordable and functional design.

Limited feature controls

Comfortable, secure fit

No app customization

Good bass-heavy audio


Impressive battery life

Key Specs

  • 8 Hours in the Bud + 12 Hours in the Case

  • Rapid Charge (10 mins = 2 Hours of playtime)

  • Premium Audio Quality

  • Activate Voice Assistant

  • Capacitive Touch Controls

  • Microphone in Each Earbud

  • Noise-Isolating Fit

  • Use Either Bud Solo

Design and Build

Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds Design and Build

I feel that the Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds, crafted from 50% recycled plastic, strike a balance between eco-conscious design and practicality.

Despite its commendable sturdiness and IPX4 certification for splash resistance, the earbuds and their case give a plasticky impression, which is fine given the pricing but a few competing products definitely look cleaner.

Also, the ear tips, made from a stiffer, lower-quality silicone, might require replacement after prolonged use.

While the case is durable, its plastic hinge feels slightly flimsy and potentially susceptible to wear over time.

Nevertheless, the lightweight, sleek design of the Smokin’ Buds and their portable case makes them an easy and convenient companion for everyday use.

The Smokin’ Buds Wireless does well to blend comfort with functionality.

Nestled inside the case are two ultra-light earbuds, offering a secure fit that remains stable even during activities like jogging.

I would know since I took them two separate intense jogging sessions and not once did they fall off.

Accompanying these earbuds are three different sizes of ear tips to cater to various ear shapes, ensuring a snug fit in the outer ear. 

I felt that the ear tips’ stiffer silicone composition requires a bit of effort to insert, but it does contribute to the buds’ overall stability.

However, this tight fit might lead to some discomfort during prolonged use.

The initial setup is user-friendly; upon inserting the buds, a voice prompt signals pairing mode, allowing for a seamless Bluetooth connection with devices like my iPhone.


Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds Features

As for the features, the TWS from Skullcandy come equipped with touch-sensitive controls that are mostly effective, though not without their quirks.

They facilitate a range of commands: a single tap plays or pauses music, answers or ends calls, a double tap raises the volume, and a quadruple tap changes the EQ mode.

However, there is no wear detection support, which felt like a miss for me.

Additionally, holding either bud for a second can reject a call or activate your voice assistant whether Android or iOS.

However, the control for lowering the volume—a triple tap—didn’t function in my testing. While these controls are comprehensive, they lack the precision found in more expensive offerings.

One notable absence is a dedicated app for the Smokin’ Buds, meaning users cannot fine-tune settings like the EQ or customize controls to their preference.

This limitation could be a drawback for those who prefer a more personalised listening experience.

Audio Performance

Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds Audio Performance

Let’s get into sound quality and the Smokin Buds deliver a more than decent experience within their budget range.

Testing them with a variety of genres highlighted their strengths and limitations.

The intense tracks of Guns and Roses were impressively rendered, with robust guitars, vibrant vocals, and dynamic drums.

While the clarity in orchestral pieces like Hans Zimmer’s Time in Inception wasn’t as refined as it might be on higher-end headphones, the overall quality was satisfactory for the price.

In terms of sound profile, the Smokin’ Buds have a bass-heavy emphasis, making them ideal for genres like pop and hip-hop.

However, as we mentioned instrumental enthusiasts might find the sound lacking in detail.

The earbuds have good peaks and dips performance, although there’s a noticeable imbalance in the high-bass and low-mid ranges, and a dip in the mid-mid that slightly hollows out vocals and lead instruments.

There is no ANC with the Smokin’ Buds but the earbuds’ snug fit effectively filters out much background noise.

This also translates to clear call quality, with recipients noting crystal clear sound.

The noise isolation capability of these earbuds is quite effective, minimizing external distractions and enhancing the listening experience.

Battery Life

Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds Battery Life

The Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds offer an impressive battery life, with up to 8 hours of playback time on a single charge and an additional 12 hours available from the charging case.

This makes a total of 20 hours of use when both the buds and case are fully charged.

Along witha rather portable design and lasting battery life the buds can last a full workday of listening, with the added flexibility of topping up the charge on the go.

Additionally, the Smokin’ Buds feature a practical ‘Rapid Charge’ function, providing up to two hours of playback from just 10 minutes of charging, making them a reliable option for those with busy lifestyles or frequent travelers.

Final Verdict

Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds Final Verdict

The Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds, priced at Rs 7,999, are a solid choice in the budget TWS market.

They balance eco-conscious design with practical features, offering comfort and stability, albeit with a plasticky feel and stiffer ear tips.

While they lack advanced features like wear detection and app customization, they compensate with efficient controls and good battery life.

Audio performance is robust, especially for bass-heavy genres, though not as nuanced for intricate musical styles.

Overall, I think that they are an affordable option for everyday use, well-suited for users prioritising functionality and battery life over high-end sophistication.


How is the build quality of Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds?

The Smokin’ Buds are made from 50% recycled plastic, offering a balance between eco-friendliness and durability. While they feel a bit plasticky, they are IPX4 certified for splash resistance, making them sturdy for everyday use.

What are the audio capabilities of the Smokin’ Buds?

They excel in bass-heavy music, making them ideal for genres like pop and hip-hop. However, they might not deliver the same level of detail in more intricate musical styles due to their sound profile.

Are there any limitations in the features of Smokin’ Buds?

Yes, they lack wear detection and customizable app support. The touch controls are comprehensive but not as precise as more expensive models.

What’s the battery life like on the Skullcandy Smokin’ Buds?

The earbuds offer 8 hours of playback, with an additional 12 hours from the case, totaling 20 hours. They also feature a rapid charge function for quick top-ups.

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