Beats has unveiled its latest on-ear creation: the Solo Pro. It builds on the success of the Solo 3 Wireless, but completely revamps the headphones with more premium materials plus advanced ANC features borrowed from the Studio 3 Wireless.
While its silhouette might look similar to its predecessor, the Solo Pro has an all-new build and design. For starters, there's no shiny plastic on any of the colour options, it's all-matte plastic on the exterior of the cups and the top of the headband.
As well as that, the arms sliding in and out of the headband are a premium anodised aluminium. They're designed to slide smoothly, but with just enough friction to stop the headphones from getting loose. There's no ratchet-style clicking as you adjust it.
The ear cups themselves are padded with a dense memory foam designed to offer great surface contact on your ears. That means an effective seal, but one that's comfortable to wear for long periods, even if you wear earrings or glasses.
While some on-ears have their cables easily visible, connecting inside the ear cups and running through the headband, Beats has hidden them along the inside of the aluminium arms. They're completely flush with the metal surface.
It's safe to say that this is the most premium-looking pair of headphones Beats has effect created. An it's kept the buttons and ports simple too.
There's one single obvious button on the outside of the cans - for controlling the ANC and audio transparency - which means no power button. The pair switches on and off automatically when you unfold and fold it.
Keeping it simple might not be to everyone's taste though. There's only one connector port on the Solo Pro: the Lightning port. It's great for iPhone users to charge their headphones with the same cable as their iPhones, but perhaps not quite as convenient for other device users.
What's more, there's no 3.5mm jack input. So it seems the headphones can only be used wirelessly.
As for its high tech internals, the Beats Solo Pro is the latest headphone powered by the Apple H1 chip. This brings all the usual benefits: easy pairing and automatic pairing across all other Apple devices with the same iCloud account.
It also manages the battery life, ensuring up to 22 hours of playback with ANC (Active Noise Cancelling) and audio transparency features switched on, or up to 40 hours with them switched off.
ANC works the same way as it does with the Beats Studio 3, in that microphones on the headphones are constantly monitoring the ambient noise in the vicinity, and then adjust the ANC filter to better match that ambience.
If you'd still like to hear what's going on around you, you can. Whether that's because you need to hear announcements at an airport/train station or you're near a road and need to hear traffic. Audio transparency can be activated by a simple push of a button.
On the whole, it's a really impressive-looking pair of headphones that promises fantastic performance in a portable form factor. It might just be the ideal travel headphones.
You'll be able to buy the Beats Solo Pro from 30 October, in Black, Ivory, Grey, Dark Blue, Light Blue and Red for £269.95. Pre-orders open at Apple.com from today.