Sony MDR-XB80BS EXTRA BASS™ Sports Wireless In-ear Headphones
So, if you like to work out a lot to keep yourself fit, you need music for that. You might even prefer an extra punch of bass to your music to keep up the flow of adrenaline rush while working out. Moreover, you don’t want it to fall off your ears while running or doing a heavy workout session. You want a tight fit and comfort as well. Workout sessions can get sweaty, you don’t want your headphones to get damaged by sweat. On top of that, it would be great if the headphone is wireless, the last thing you want is to get annoyed by a wire. Sony has released the right pair of headphones for you. The Sony MDR-XB80BS EXTRA BASS™ Sports Wireless In-ear Headphones will drag your attraction because of its design and overall features that it’s offering.
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Like most of the medium range Sony headphones, the unboxing experience is simple. The box contains the headphones itself, a micro USB cable for charging, 4 pairs of hybrid silicone ear tips of different sizes, a cable adjuster, and a soft fabric carrying pouch. A carrying pouch is always appreciated, and it can protect the headphone from any sort of external damage.
The MDR-XB80BS is a neckband style headphone and uses ear hooks to secure the best grip. It is available in three color variants; black, red, or blue. I, personally prefer the black variant because of its neutral and sleek look.
The ear hooks might look uncomfortable but they are not. These headphones are specially built for working out and other sports purposes. So, the ear hooks guarantee the most secure fit. They are made out of soft material and flexible as well. It goes over the ear and the part that goes behind the ears is thicker and the neckbands are connected with both thick ends. The fit is very comfortable and it can be used for an extended period without any issue.
The headphone features an IPX5 rating. You can use this headphone when it’s raining. It can also sustain splashes. But you need to shut the latch cover for the micro-USB port or else rainwater will enter in the micro USB port and damage the headphone.
The headphone uses a 0.5mm neodymium driver per earpiece to deliver audio. The onboard control is housed on the earpiece instead of a remote in the neckband. The right earpiece features all the media control buttons. It has a LED status indicator as well. There’s a multifunctional power button that also functions as a play pause button dependent on how long you press and hold it. It can also be used as a call management button; you can use it to receive or decline calls.
There are plus/minus volume buttons that control your smartphone’s master volume. These buttons also act as track navigation buttons. Many people might not appreciate all these multifunctional buttons, it might get excessively complicated. Sony could’ve included a dedicated volume rocker and media control buttons. And on a serious note, you will be pressing these buttons on the go without seeing them. So, you might skip a track or even power off unintentionally which might result in distress for you.
Unfortunately, these headphones do not support the Sony Headphones Connect app. So, you can’t tweak with the settings of these headphones very much.
The built-in microphone of this headphone performs better than average. It can record clear sound. You can receive a call while running and your voice will be perfectly audible even if you are in a noisy environment.
This headphone can last seven hours once fully charged. But the number might vary in case of different volume levels. It uses a micro-USB port to charge and takes approximately two hours to fully charge. The headphones shut down automatically after remaining idle for a short time to preserve battery. The battery life of these is not the best out there, but it’s definitely on the good side. You can go through a day with heavy usage which is sufficient.
The pairing process is easy like other Bluetooth headphones, it is fast though. It also features NFC for fast pairing. The connection is pretty stable, there are no major connection issues with this headphone.
You want to enjoy good music; so good sound quality is a must.
The XB of the Sony MDR-XB80BS stands for Extra Bass. So, these headphones emphasize bass. This headphone has a strong bass response. The bass is not heavy on ears, it would rather sound different. Bass lovers will be more than satisfied by their bass performance. The bass is detailed, deep, and punchy. The bass does not distort even you play at a higher or full volume. Unlike other bass-heavy headphones, the bass does not tend to shadow other frequencies.
The mid is present. The vocals sound good. The lower mid sounds are pretty good. If you are listening to grunge rock music, such as “Heart-Shaped Box” from Nirvana, you will very much enjoy Kurt Kobain’s grunge vocals. It sounds very natural and detailed. The higher mids sound a bit underwhelming which is fine because it’s not a balanced sounding headphone.
You won’t be disappointed by how this headphone handles the higher ends. The higher instrumental notes sound crisp and clean but If you listen to something like “Shadow of The Day” from Linkin Park, you will feel the lack of the kick drums which could use a bit more of punch.
The sound staging is nothing extraordinary. It won’t give you a concert like feeling. But the imaging is quite good, you would be able to separate instrument sound coming from different directions.
It’s a decent sounding headphone. The Extra Bass does not ruin the sound like a lot of extra bass headphones out there. And as a headphone from the extra bass lineup, you can’t expect it to be balanced sounding. If you are into sport and prefer that extra bass, you should consider Sony MDR-XB80BS. It won’t disappoint you.