The Sony MDR-XB50BS

As I’ve said before, my name is Robert and I have a headphone addiction problem. Well my latest are the Sony MDR-XB50BS. Recently I switched over to the HTC U Ultra as my main device and it does not have a headphone jack, just like the iPhone 7. For many that is a deal breaker, not long ago I couldn’t imagine that sound quality on Bluetooth headphones could compete with wired headphones. The Sony MDR-XB950BT changed my mind with their rich sound and a reasonable price.

I got my first Bluetooth earbuds last year,  the Mpow Magneto, but they had their shortcomings. So I thought it was time to step up my game just a little without breaking the bank. I love over the ear headphones, but I can’t wear those everywhere especially in warm weather. The Sony headphones were so impressive I decided to give their earbuds a try.

I’ll be honest, I was not impressed with the size or design. They aren’t very attractive, they’re downright clunky even. I thought there’s no way they will work out for me but I have 30 days to play with them before I’m stuck with them for life.

Sony provides 3 different sized earbud tips and 3 different sized wings to boot. That gives you all kinds of options when it comes to fit. I found the right combination for me, but that took some customization. Right away my fear of them being clunky and heavy was alleviated. They felt nice and light in the ear.

I can wear them all day until the battery dies. That’s the tradeoff with earbuds, they don’t have the 25 hour battery life that over the ear Bluetooth headphones do. You’re more likely to get 7 or 8 hours of playback. I can still get several days before a charge is required but not a full week or two like I do with the Sony over the ear cans.

IMAG0989The controls are fairly simple and all located on the right earbud. There’s a power button that functions as call/cancel when taking phone calls, and play/pause when listening to music. The volume rocker doubles as back and next when skipping tracks with a long press. All the buttons are easy to find and differentiate by touch. The controls are very responsive. The micro USB charging port is located in the right earpiece as well. Connectivity was never an issue either. They quickly paired with my phone each time.

The Sony XB series stands for extra bass. They are heavy on the low end, but still manage to give a good range of sound. If you are a hip hop/R&B or electronic music fan, these are great earbuds for your taste in music. All music sounds solid in them, the words rich and full come to mind. I listen to a wide variety of music and it all sounds great. The bass doesn’t really muddle the highs, but I will say they are buried a little deeper.

IMAG0994Overall these are a great pair of earbuds for everyday use, gym workouts, etc. They stay in my ear just fine with the earbuds and wings provided. I’m sure you can find a combination that will work for you. I modified my earbuds with foam tips that I purchased in the past. I nearly wrote a post on foam tips alone, but I didn’t think I coud get 500 words on that topic. They fit snugly and reduce fatigue. At 6 bucks for 5 pairs, its a pretty inexpensive solution. If you haven’t given Bluetooth a shot, this would be a great place to start.

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