I am not normally a review writer, and I realize this may seem a little piss poor after several months of radio silence. However, when I tried to find interviews on these, other than a single review on the Costco website, I found nothing. So, I’m going to put this out there, just so there is another source of information for a poor soul who is coming up empty.
In the interest of full disclosure, I found these on a display at Costco, and there was a sample available to try. It was impressive. Of course, the person before me had cranked the volume up, but even when I turned the volume down as low as it would go on the sample unit, I could not hear what my friend was saying. This peaked my interest, as I had been keeping an eye out for noise cancelling headphones–these being Bluetooth was a definite bonus, in my mind. They were more on-ear than over-ear, which was a tad disappointing, but not a dealbreaker for me (especially since my ears are on the small side). Costco cost was $169.99 USD–that’s the price in store and online. I went back and forth, and decided to do more investigating.
I found a pair on Ebay for a fair bit less. They weren’t dirt cheap, but they were reasonable enough for me to feel comfortable purchasing. The Costco reviewer had mentioned the ones from Costco came with extra cables that non-Costco headsets did not. I tried to ask the buyer about this multiple times, but never received a response, so I had to wait until the product arrived.
Here is a photo of what I got:
There is one cable that is not pictured–the mini usb charging cable. It’s not pictured because I didn’t realize it was still in the black bag.
My assumption, based on what I received, is that the Costco product comes with an Iphone cable of some sort. To me, the standard product was perfectly fine, as I have an Android anyway.
A list of what was there:
- Mini Usb Charger
- A/C Adapter with fold-in plugs for Mini Usb Charger
- Regular male/male audio cable (3.5 mm)
- Phone male/male audio cable (with mic) (3.5 mm)
- Headphones (obviously)
- Hard Canvas-ish Case
- Warranty info and 2 Guides: Quick and Full
- Inner foldover cloth bag for the cables
The headphones have to be charged before they can be paired to anything. The guide recommends that you only use the mini USB provided by Sony, as other USBs may or may not work. Of course, with it being Sony, they also had little short cuts for pairing Sony products (via an app). I didn’t want to go that route because it seemed like just a Sony thing, and I’m perfectly fine with an old fashioned Bluetooth pairing.
I should probably note that it took a minute for the charge indicator light to come on once I had plugged the headphones into my computer to charge. To be accurate, it probably took a full 10 seconds–not extreme, but just enough to make me worried for a minute. So, if your light isn’t turning on, give it a bit, or try unplugging and replugging, and then still give it a bit.
The guide says charging can take up to 2.5 hours. For me, the initial charge only took about 45 minutes.
The pairing process was simple enough: hold the power button down until it flashes red/blue, and then scan for your headphones on whatever pairing device you want. I had no issues pairing. It might be worth mentioning, though, that these were detected by my paired devices as the BN version of the headphones, not the DC. So, it is possible that the DC could just be a slightly different version of the BN, like an LE sedan versus an LS sedan. So, if you’re looking for reviews of the DC, it might be worthwhile to also search for reviews of the BN. A quick search on my part revealed that the overall consensus is good, but the headphones get uncomfortable around 4 hours and more of wear, so that’s a point to consider (I haven’t worn them for that long yet).
Far as audio quality, I admit I am not an audiophile, but I tend to like Classical pre-configurations when listening to music. I find it gives the bass the right amount of punch without muddying everything else, and the melodies are richer. With that being said, I would say these headphones are not quite as good as others, but they’re close enough.
Now onto the noise cancelling. I was not in a noisy environment when I tested these, so I turned on an oscillating fan to give a bit of drone. These headphones supposedly have 3 levels of noise cancellation, and adjust accordingly to the ambient noise levels.
When I turned on the NC, I definitely heard a drop in sound from the fan, but it could still clearly be heard. I tried music on an extra low volume, and I could still hear the fan. I then realized that at the store, even turning the test pair all the way down still brought the volume only down to about mid-range. Once I bumped my volume up to mid-range, the fan noise was drowned out. But, at that point, I couldn’t really say if it was due to the noise cancellation or due to just being drowned out by something louder.
Mr. Miles has Bose headphones, so I have tried those before, and these are no match in NC. But, as with the audio, they are good enough, and all the extra cables and such that they come with make it a more versatile purchase, in my book. If Bose NC is 10/10, I’d give these a 7/10.
This is just my quick initial review; I have not put these through the paces as they should be (especially for noisy environments and for long periods of time). Again, I’d recommend checking reviews of the BN model, as that model is very similar and has a lot more feedback. My main goal was to give an overall picture of what you get and what to expect.
I don’t regret my purchase, but I am glad I didn’t pay full price for these.