These are by no means audiophile headphones, but I’ve been a fan of the Sony WF-XB700 “extra bass” headphones since their release. A big part of that is their unconventional shape, which twists into my ear canal deeper than most other headphones for a solid fit that also manages to stay comfortable. But today Sony is introducing the replacements for these headphones, and while there are some notable improvements like app support (with EQ), longer battery life, and easier controls, The overall design of the new $ 100 WF-C500 headphones is definitely safer. They are also less expensive than the XF-XB700.
Sony says it decided to go for a more compact style this time around, but it has maintained the WF-XB700’s IPX4 water and sweat resistance. Battery life increased to 10 hours of continuous play (down from 9) and 20 hours of case charging (down from 18). Surprisingly enough, the new headphones abandon Sony’s “extra bass” sound setting. But since the CF500s work with Sony’s mobile app, you should be able to boost the bass using the adjustable EQ for a similar result. The company is really trying to position them as ideal for people who buy their first set of true wireless headphones.
I’m glad Sony kept one thing about the XB700s though. Well, two, actually. The headphones still have an excellent grippy matte finish. And the top half of the charging case is still semi-translucent, so you can easily tell when the individual earbuds and case are all done charging.
The New Buds also have Sony’s DSEE (Digital Sound Enhancement Engine) for audio scaling, but that still feels a little fancy to me – especially when we’re talking about $ 99.99 headphones. What’s more useful is that they support both Fast Pair on Android and Swift Pair for quick setup on Windows. The WF-C500 headphones are available for pre-order today, and there is a range of exclusive colors depending on where you buy them. Sony will sell them in black, Amazon has black and white, Best buy gets them in black and green, and Target sells black and orange.
Sony is also introducing a new set of mid-range noise-canceling headphones. Priced at $ 249.99, the WH-XB910N headphones pack that extra bass punch and up to 30 hours of continuous battery life. They also support multipoint (two simultaneous Bluetooth connections), a feature that has been incorporated into Sony headphones from the flagship WH-1000XM4. Like these more expensive headphones, these have touch and slide controls. The huge Sony logo is a bit too much for me, but that’s a matter of personal taste.
It’s the same story as the WF-C500 with exclusive colors in different stores: Sony keep it simple with black, Amazon offers black and blue, Best buy has black and green, and Target sells them in black and orange.