Sony’s latest truly wireless offering is capable as well as boombastic
There are so many truly wireless earbuds out there and most would agree that the good ones are very expensive. Then there is Sony, a company we know for its wireless noise-cancelling headphones (besides several other products). So when the WF-XB700 truly wireless headphones arrived at a sub-10K price point from the company that has given us the WH-1000XM3, we were like, “Huh, what?!”
One look at the box and we know what Sony is offering: “Extra bass”, something that’s plastered all over the packaging. The big selling point here is that these earbuds are supposed to have very high quality bass without compromising on battery life and call quality.
The WF-XB700 arrives in a case that’s slightly larger than the Samsung Galaxy Buds but it still fits very well in the pocket and sits perfectly on a table, without slipping or sliding. The plastic case may not feel super premium but it is fine for the price. It has USB Type-C charging on the back and no support for wireless charging. The buds fit without any discomfort. Dancing, chewing, jumping, running… the WF-XB700 stays in the ears.
There are buttons on the bottom of each bud, which is something many would like since one doesn’t need to worry about accidental touches while adjusting the fit of the buds. The design is robust and the seal is good. There is no active noise cancellation but that’s not an issue. Comfort wins.
Feel the bass
The next big win is pairing, which happens instantly. You take it out of the box and it pairs. Since the device comes with single-pair connections, one can listen to just the right or the left. With IPX4 support, it’s easily protected against rain and sweat.
What we would have liked to see is multi pairings. Sure, not many earbuds have this function but it’s something to look forward to. You can’t connect it to your laptop and your phone and then switch easily between them.
Great, what about sound? Everyone has different music tastes and different preferences about the EQ. The extra bass claims on the packaging are very true. There is indeed clarity of the bass. The music sounds lively… as if you in a club. Tiesto or Steve Aoki are very much welcome!
On the low end, the sound is very clear. There is a 12mm driver unit to ensure good sound. And there is no distortion in the bass. We switched a lot between summer pop, Motown and, of course, a lot of acoustic stuff too. Overall, the music doesn’t sound like that it’s coming from a small speaker. It feels full and there is just about enough separation in the highs and the lows. The other winner is that there is no Bluetooth dropout, which can be frustrating.
When it comes to calls, you wouldn’t have to scream your lungs out! Most ambient sounds are taken care of when you are on the road.
Who is it for?
Sony has also introduced WF-SP800N, which comes with noise cancellation but frankly, the device at hand is good enough for most people. Delivering nine hours of battery life on a single charge (and another nine hours when in the box; plus quick charge, which gives one hour of listening time on a 10-minute charge), the Sony WF-XB700 is a very capable boombastic offering in a market of mehs.
At a glance: Sony WF-XB700
- Extra bass with 12mm driver unit
- Battery life of nine hours earbuds + nine hours in carrying case
- lTen-minute quick charge for 60 minutes playback
- IPX4 water resistance against rain and sweat
- Google Assistant and Siri support
- Built-in mic for hands-free calling
- Price: Rs 9,990