Teardown: Beats Solo

Avery Louie, Prototype Engineer at Bolt:

One of the great things about the solo headphones is how substantial they feel. A little bit of weight makes the product feel solid, durable, and valuable. One way to do this cheaply is to make some components out of metal in order to add weight. In these headphones, 30% of the weight comes from four tiny metal parts that are there for the sole purpose of adding weight.

Pathetic. But how about the bass?

I couldn’t tell from the product teardown but the generic drivers make it seem unlikely.

Louie estimates the COGS (cost of goods sold) without labor or shipping to be US$16.89. Beats sells the Solo for $199. You don’t buy Beats for quality, you buy Beats because it’s cool.