Hollyland Solidcom C1 Pro Review

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The Hollyland Solidcom C1 Pro is a full-duplex wireless intercom headset system that operates in the 1.9GHz band. It has a claimed operating range of up to 1000′ / 350m and it is a follow-up to the very successful Hollyland Solidcom C1.

I reviewed the Hollyland Solidcom C1 system early last year and found it to be a good option if you were looking for a decent duplex wireless headset system. The audio quality was good, they were easy to operate and use, and most importantly, they were comfortable to wear. Hollyland certainly put some thought and attention to detail into that product and the C1 System was one of the better wireless duplex systems I have used.

Below you can watch the official product launch.

Key features

  • Clear wideband audio with 150Hz to 7KHz frequency response
  • 1000ft / 350m intercom connection range
  • DECT 6.0 for enhanced stability and security
  • Replaceable rechargeable battery for extended working time
  • 170g lightweight headset (with battery)
  • Easy to use out of the box
  • Customizable and expandable package scheme for varying team sizes

What are they for?

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On film sets, wireless handsets can increase efficiency by allowing team members to easily communicate with each other. They can come in very handy when you are filming live shows with multiple cameras, reality TV, or any type of event where a team needs to communicate with each other over large distances.


You could also use them for simple communication between a solo shooter and a director or producer, or even to talk to a sound recordist. There really aren’t any hard fast rules as to what you could use them for.


I often use headsets on my productions as it easily allows members of the crew to talk to each other when you are not close and it also means that nobody needs to shout. If you have clients on set then having the crew be able to communicate quietly and efficiently without shouting or trying to track down someone who isn’t close sends the correct message. If you want to be professional then it is also important to act professionally as well.

Wireless headsets are not a new concept by any means. There have been systems in place just like the Hollyland for a long time.

Most wireless duplex headsets tend to look fairly similar. The Hollyland C1 Pro has a nice streamlined, modern-looking design, and while it does look similar to the original there are a few subtle differences. The new Pro version looks quite different from something like the Eartec UL4S UltraLITE 4-Person System that has been available for a long time.

What do you get?

Hollyland Solidcom C1 Pro

In the kit I was testing, this is what you get:

  • 1x Master headset
  • 3x Remote headsets
  • 1x Charging case
  • 4x Over-ear leather cushion
  • 8x battery
  • 4x Microphone cushion
  • 1x DC adapter
  • 4x On-ear leather cushion
  • 1x USB-Type A to USB-C cable
  • 1x Storage case
  • 1x Quick guide
  • 1x Warranty card

It is nice that Hollyland gives you everything you need. The included case is quite nice too.

Build Quality

The build quality is pretty good considering how lightweight the headsets are. While some parts do feel a little plasticky, I was fairly happy with the overall build quality. There aren’t any real massive differences between the build quality of the Solidcom C1 and the Solidcom C1 Pro.

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The headphones feel a lot more solidly made and well thought out than the CAME-TV WAERO system that I reviewed a couple of years ago.

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The Solidcom C1 Pro on the left & the Solidcom C1 on the right

If it ain’t broke don’t fix it. The original design of the Solidcom C1 was good, so there is no point in changing something just for the sake of it. The basic design of the Solidcom C1 Pro hasn’t changed much from that of the original.

The only real differences if you look closely are that the button design is slightly different, there is a new microphone being used, and the color of the band that sits on your head has changed.

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Hollyland has paid a lot of attention to small details in the design and it shows in the end product.

Storage-wise they don’t fold up like the CAME-TV WAERO, but I didn’t find that to be an issue as the whole system comes in a nice storage case anyway. I often find that headsets that bend don’t over as much stability and they can be more prone to breaking.

I also like that you can wear the headsets on either your left or right ear. This reversible design is a nice touch.

If you are shooting with a camera on your shoulder you don’t want the headset to interfere with how you operate. I found that the headdsets didn’t uncomfortably smash up against the side of the camera, however, the pad is likely to make contact with the side of the camera if you are a left-eye operator like me.

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The Master headset is easily identifiable because it uses a red Solidcom C1 Pro label while all of the other headsets are blue.

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The headsets are also numbered which makes them easy to identify.


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Comfort is right at the top of the list for me when it comes to purchasing any type of headphones. If a headset isn’t comfortable it is just going to annoy you and get in your way. So is the C1 Pro comfortable to wear?

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With any type of headphone, comfort is going to be different depending on the individual. We all have different head shapes and sizes. Our ears aren’t all the same either. What may be comfortable for one person, isn’t necessarily going to be comfortable for someone else.

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Personally, I found the headset to be comfortable to wear. If I am going to wear something for a long period of time, which is something you would be doing in most scenarios with a duplex headset, it has to be very comfortable. Some previous systems I have tried were very uncomfortable to wear and I found myself always wanting to take the headset off. Even though the Solidcom C1 Pro shares a very similar design to the original, I did find it slightly more comfortable to wear. I am not sure why this was the case, considering all the padded coverings are the same.

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I personally preferred the smaller foam ear cover rather than the larger over-ear cover, but that’s just because that worked better for me. Again, it is nice that Hollyland pays attention to details and gives you the option of two ear covers.

Above you can see the difference between the two different-sized covers.

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The pad on the opposite side of the headphone is reasonably soft and it doesn’t dig into your head.

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For my particular head size and shape, I found that the pad was sitting in just the right spot where it didn’t end up pushing on the top of my ear. Again, everyone’s head shape is different, so what is comfortable for one person, may not be comfortable for someone else.

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The battery slot is also located on the back of the pad, but the battery isn’t very heavy so the headset has a good balance and it doesn’t feel like all of the weight is on one side.

Operating Range

To avoid interference with other devices, the C1 Pro intercom system communicates over the 1.9 GHz spectrum and offers full-duplex conversations. In theory, full duplex lets you talk to other team members as you would over the phone, with each party being able to talk and listen simultaneously.

Hollyland claims that the maximum operating range of the C1 Pro is 1000ft / 350m (line of site). This range is comparable with other similar products. I will test the range further down in the review.


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The Hollyland C1 Pro system comes with 8 batteries which is a nice touch. It is always good to get spare batteries included for products like this. These are the exact same batteries that come with the original Solidcom C1. If you have batteries from that system they will work in the new Solidcom C1 Pro.

The battery goes into a compartment on the opposite side of the headphone. The battery latch door and mechanism are made out of plastic, however, they feel reasonably tactile and solid. I opened and closed the compartment around 50 times and tried to be as rough as I could and nothing felt like it was going to break. As this is something you are not going to be opening on a consistent basis I was happy with the build quality.

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The batteries need to be recharged externally via a dedicated multi-port charger. Each battery takes around 2.5h to fully charge. The batteries support up to 10 hours of runtime in the remote headsets and 5-6 hours of runtime for the master headset. This is a decent amount of time and I found I could easily get through a day’s shoot using the provided batteries.

I like that the system comes with a nicely made charger that can charge up to 8 batteries at once. The charger is reasonably lightweight and it is easy to use. It is nice that it fits inside the case with everything else.

What controls do you have?

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The controls on the headset are straightforward and easy to use which is exactly what you want. Headsets shouldn’t be complicated. When you are working the last thing you want to be doing is messing around with controls or settings. KISS is the best philosophy here.

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There is a small On/Off switch that is located on the edge of the main headphone. This can be a little tricky to reach when you are wearing the headset, but in all honesty, it is not something that you are likely to touch when you have it on.

On the side of the headset, there are five buttons, instead of the four that were on the original Solidcom C1. The new button that has been added is in the middle and it is the largest of the buttons. What it does is allow the user to mute their microphone without needing to pull the microphone up. It is directly in the middle and because it is the largest of the buttons it is easy to locate just using your fingers.

You also have the option of muting or activating the microphone by pulling it up and down, just as you did on the original.

Having these two options means that you don’t need to pull the microphone up to mute it as you did on the original. I actually didn’t mind pulling the microphone up to mute it and then pulling it down to unmute it. In some ways, I found this easier to do than reaching up and pressing a button.

On the original, I also actually like that Hollyland made the large volume increase button bigger than the other buttons. That made it easier to locate even when you were wearing the headset.

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There is also an A and a B button. The A button is the pairing button if you need to pair headsets. You do this by long-pressing for 5 seconds. The B button only works if you are using the HUB station.

Just near the actual microphone itself, there is an ENC switch. When the switch is moved and you can see yellow tab it is activated. When it is pushed the other way it is turned off.

So what exactly does the ENC switch do? ENC stands for Environmental Noise Cancellation. When activated ENC helps to cancel or suppress ambient noise and background sounds so that someone’s voice is easier to hear. How it works is that when an audio signal goes into the internal electronic circuit it essentially creates two identical signals in the opposite phase that cancel each other out. The result of doing this is that ultimately you end up with a clearer voice that you can hear.

Now, it isn’t some magical solution, but it does help when you are using the headsets in environments where there is a lot of background noise. It is nice that Hollyland has given you this feature in the Solidcom C1 Pro.

How do they work?

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The headsets automatically pair once they are on which I like. It saves time and there is no setup required. When the headsets are first turned on you will hear a little audible message saying that they have connected. You do need to use the master headset for the system to work, but you can just use 2 of the headsets, you don’t have to use all them.

I like that Hollyland has clearly labeled the headsets so you can identify them easily. They also give you extra stickers in different colors so you can relabel them yourself if need be. Being able to clearly label and identify them avoids confusion.

As I mentioned earlier, you don’t need to mute the microphone by pulling it up past a certain point where you hear a little click if you don’t want to. Instead, you can just simply press a button to mute and unmute the microphone.

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The only issue is that when you press the button to mute the microphone you don’t get any audible indication.

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While the color of the LED light on the microphone changes to red, it isn’t always easy to see the colored indicator when you are working. It would have been nice to have an audible muted message when you use the button for this very reason.

Again, I didn’t mind pulling the microphone up to mute it because it gets it out of your way when you don’t need to talk, however, I can see the logic in just having the microphone in the same position regardless of whether it is muted or unmuted.

Holyland has placed a little indicator light down near the microphone so you can quickly identify any issues. Here is what the indicators mean:

  • SOLID RED– Mute

There are also the following audible messages that can be heard:

  • ‘Low Battery
  • A chime sound when the maximum volume is reached
  • Tick sound when the microphone is turned On or Off

Audio quality

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Along with comfort, audio quality is very important with any type of duplex wireless system. You need to be able to hear and communicate with your team effectively. If the audio quality isn’t good then a system becomes useless. I found the quality of the C1 Pro system to be pretty good. It is easy to hear and the quality of the audio is reasonably clear.

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The ENC (Environmental Noise Cancellation) works pretty well and you can definitely notice a difference when it is activated. While it doesn’t completely remove background noises from being picked up it certainly keeps them to a minimum.

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The volume is reasonably loud. While you can still hear someone in normal environments if you tried to use them in a very noisy environment like a concert you could struggle. In saying that, that is going to be the case for just about any duplex system that only features a single headphone.

My advice is that if you were going to use a system like this in a noisy environment, I would be putting an earplug into the ear that doesn’t have the headphone.

Will they work with the original Solidcom C1 headsets?

I tried to see if I could get a Solidcom C1 to pair up with a Solidcom C1 Pro, but I couldn’t get it to work, however, Hollyland assures me that it will.

Optional HUB Base

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If you need to use lots of C1 headsets you can buy the optional HUB Base.

Real World Use

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A product such as a duplex wireless headset can meet all of the requirements on paper, but if it doesn’t work well out in the field on location then no one is going to want to use it.

For me, along with comfort and audio quality, usability is a big factor. Everyone on your crew who has a headset needs to be able to use it easily without it getting in the way of what they are doing. The last thing I want on set is a crew member complaining that they can’t get their headset to work. Everything needs to be simple to use as well as reliable.

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The easiest way to actually test out headsets is to get feedback from a crew after they have used them, so that is exactly what I did. I used the system on a couple of shoots and everyone in the crew was generally happy with how they performed and how comfortable they were to wear.

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The signal works over quite large distances when you have line of sight, but it will struggle if there are buildings or other man-made structures between the headsets.

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In a very congested and busy RF environment in the middle of Tokyo, I found that I was able to get around 1148′ / 350m before I started having issues with the signal. This was in line with the max claimed range of 1000′ / 350m. What you need to be mindful of is that distance is usually only going to be achievable in open areas without a lot of RF interference.

I also found that if I went around a corner with a large building in the way I could walk for about 20m / 66′ before I lost the signal.

The other thing you need to be mindful of is that the microphones are pretty susceptible to wind noise which is something you need to keep in mind.

The overall quality of the audio and what you can hear is really good and I was happy with how they performed.

The battery life is good and the headsets work as advertised. They are trouble-free to use and they require no set-up.

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Other Options

Eartec is arguably one of the leading companies when it comes to duplex wireless intercom systems. They have a vast array of options at varying price points. Below are just two of the options:

Price & Availability

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The Hollyland C1 Pro four headset version that I was testing retails for $1,299 USD. This does make it quite a lot more money than something like the CAME-TV WAERO Duplex Digital Wireless Foldable Headset with Hardcase 4 Pack ($548 USD), however, I do think that the Hollyland is a vastly superior product in just about all areas.

The Solidcom C1 Pro is also available in sets of 2,3,4, 6, and 8. Here are the prices for those:

If you are going to be using duplex headsets a lot then it doesn’t make sense to go with the cheapest option. You need something that is comfortable, easy to use, reliable, and well-made.


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The Hollyland C1 Pro system is a good option if you are looking for a decent duplex wireless headset system. The audio quality is good, they are easy to operate and use, and most importantly, they are comfortable to wear. Hollyland has certainly put some thought and attention to detail into this product. While the Pro version isn’t a big upgrade over the original Solidcom C1, the new mute/unmute button and the ECS are nice additions.

I enjoyed using them, and so did my crew.

The Solidcom C1 Pro system builds on the original while still keeping the form and functionality that made them so popular. The C1 Pro is the best wireless duplex system I have used and I think most people will be happy with its performance, build quality, reliability, and value for money.

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