Sony MDR-XB650BT Wireless Headphone Review
Not a lot of good options are available when I go out looking for some branded, good looking wireless headphones. When Sony MDR-XB650BT arrived for review I said to myself – if these sound good, their overnight success is guaranteed!
The MDR-XB650BT is not only light and small, but they are gorgeous to look at. Their even shape, perfectly flat and circular cups and a shiny, uni color scheme would put many XB series headphones to shame. Not surprisingly, it looked good on every person I made to wear.
Its band is made out of a flexible metal plate, cups out of quality plastic; they are also the biggest area of the headphones and thus have an NFC tag beneath, it gets so damn easy to pair up with smartphones.
There’s also a mounted volume rocker for controlling headphones own volume, a cute little joystick to change tracks, play/pause or pick a call and a MIC. The cups just swivel outwards but don’t fold.
The headband and cup cushions are made out of same, leatherette covered material. The cup cushions are thicker, though that wouldn’t be of much help. A particular thing to note about the MDR-650BT is that they are on-ear type headphones. The cup cushions, though soft, stay on the ears. This means you won’t be able to wear them for longer durations, typically not more than an hour. It’s good from a perspective of short listening bouts, but for people who like to keep their headphones on for hours at once would find them hard to use.
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I am not really a fan of wireless headphones, especially ones that ‘specialize’ on bass. It’s a great feat off course, the battery on Sony MDR-XB650BT running extra bass drivers for a pretty amazing duration of over 25 hours on single charge.
But sooner or later you might end up with a dead battery with no way to charge. A cable option would have done wonders for this product. It’s a different fact though, that for frequent travelers, a cable would be another thing to pack, which kills the purpose of wireless altogether. If your average listening is about an two hours daily, you won’t need to charge the headphones for next two weeks!
Secondly, wireless music tends to lose out on information for it is packed by your mobile phone sent to the headphones, and extracted and ‘cleaned’ there. For that matter, Sony MDR-650BT does a nice job. You won’t find the sound ‘magically’ hypnotizing as with a good wired headphone, but it’s very close in recreating almost every type of sound. Plus being on-ear type, they retain much of the sounds very close and hence audible at low volumes as well.
Hip hop and Bollywood songs were rendered well. But the bass is too much at times, the upper and mid end of the lower frequency (responsible for bass output) is not realistically separated; it becomes chaotic for songs like Coldplay Magic that requires precise reproduction at regular intervals. And you can’t really fiddle with equalizers when you are listening to YouTube!
Whereas in Paradise, it isn’t as disturbing, being a lighter note. Rather, the Piano is clear despite its not so sharp high frequency response. EDM tracks would listen just fine – one of the perfect genres to buy the MDR-XB650BT for; also, if you watch a lot of movies on your phone/tablet.
Good looks and built quality define the Sony MDR-XB650BT. Easy touch-pairing, built in high-fidelity microphone, mounted controls and an amazing battery backup make it one of the most friendly- to-use wireless headphones around. Though its extra bass output could muddle some tracks and not suitable for every kind of music, rest assured it can get the best ( a wireless headphone can) out of Electronic, Bollywood and classical music.