"If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work."
Beats by Dr. Dre Pill review
The Beats Pill is compact and well designed, but lacks bass and distorts at high volume levels
- Stylish, compact design
- Decent sound at moderate volumes
- Included, zippered carry case
- Distortion at high volume levels
- Lack of bass
The Beats Pill is a compact, well designed and easy to use portable Bluetooth speaker. However, it lacks bass, distorts at high volume levels and is overpriced. Spend your money elsewhere.
Price$ 259.00 (AUD)
Portable Bluetooth speakers seem to be one of the most popular consumer technology devices right now, so it's no surprise to see Beats jump into the game. The Beats Pill is compact, well designed and easy to use, but it lacks bass, distorts at high volume levels and is overpriced.
A giant pill
The Beats Pill, as its name suggests, has been designed to look like a giant pill, the type you swallow with a glass of water. It's a long cylinder with rounded ends on either side and a flat, rubber base on the bottom that allows it to sit on a desk or table without rolling over. It weighs just 310g, so it's one of the lightest products in its class.
A striking design is clearly the best feature of the Beats Pill, but it hasn't come at a cost of build quality: the device feels very well constructed. The speaker grills feel sturdy and solid, the matte plastic on the back is smooth and doesn't creak or rattle when pressed, and the glossy buttons on the front add to the overall look and feel.
A band running straight through the middle of the Beat Pill houses all of its controls. There's a large Beats button front and centre which acts as a multifunction key. It plays and pauses music, acts as an answer call button when the unit is used as a speakerphone, and puts the device into Bluetooth pairing mode when held for three seconds. There's also volume up and down buttons, and a power button on the back.
The Beats Pill has NFC connectivity, which allows you to automatically pair any NFC-enabled smartphone. We successfully managed to pair the speaker with multiple smartphones including a Samsung Galaxy S4 and a Sony Xperia Z. There's also a microUSB port for charging the device, 3.5mm audio input and output jacks, and a Bluetooth indicator light on the back.
A lack of bass in your beats
Setting up the Beats Pill is as simple as you'd expect from a Bluetooth audio device. Power on the speaker, hold down the Beats button for three seconds to put the unit into pairing mode, and connect your smartphone, tablet or other Bluetooth device.
Unfortunately, the sound quality of the Beats Pill can't match its build quality and design. The Beats Pill lacks bass and distorts at high volume levels. It is reasonably loud and can easily fill a small room with sound, but music deteriorates if the volume is raised over 80 per cent.
The Beats Pill performs best in the midrange, but there's little stereo separation. This issue is common with small speakers, however, and not an issue solely with the Beats Pill.
At lower volumes, the Beats Pill produces reasonable sound. It's clear and full and only distorts when there is excessive bass. However, we found the Jabra Solemate offered better bass, and the UE Boom louder volume and better sound quality overall. Both are cheaper than the Beats Pill, so we think it is definitely overpriced.
A built-in speakerphone function means the Beats Pill can also be used to handle voice calls if connected to a mobile phone or smartphone. The sound is clearer and louder than what you would get from the built-in speakerphone on most smartphones.
Battery life is average. The Beats Pill lasted almost six hours during our testing, which is a decent but not outstanding result. It's enough for the odd tune, but not long enough to play music for a full day without the need for a power cord.
The Beats Pill comes with an AC adapter, a USB-to-micro-USB charging cable and a 3.5mm audio cable to connect to any wired device. There's also a matching, zippered case included, though unlike some other cases we've seen you can't play music through the speaker with the case on.
The Beats Pill is available now through major Australian retailers for $259.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Nokia 6 (2018) review: Simple. Solid. Supreme.
- 2 Samsung Q9F Series QLED: Peak performance from a home entertainment heavyweight
- 3 Hisense takes the fight to home entertainment heavyweights with flagship Series 8 and 9 ULED TVs
- 4 D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD DSH-C310 review
- 5 Ring Video Doorbell review
Latest News Articles
- Bang & Olufsen announces release date for AirPlay 2
- Sonos introduce cheaper, smarter Sonos Beam soundbar
- Computex 2018: ASUS mesh router with built-in Alexa smart speaker confirmed for Australia
- WWDC 2018: Apple TV 4K gets new features and screensavers with tvOS 12
- Apple update HomePod for Stereo Pairing & Multi-Room Audio via AirPlay
PCW Evaluation Team
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.
Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category
The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
- Computex 2018: Everything you missed at Asia's biggest tech tradeshow
- Computex 2018: Nvidia launches new AI-focused hardware and software platforms
- Huawei P20 Pro review: See it and believe the hype
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies