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7 people found this helpful
Phenomenally cold tinny sound
on 9 January 2013
I've been a long term fan of Sony headphones for a while now so when i recently left my MDR-XB40EX at work and needed some phones for the weekend i popped into my local Sony shop and bought a pair of these. Initially i was disappointed in how lifeless they felt. I tried a variety of buds on them and left them running for 24hrs to try and break them in a little. It is now a month later and, try as i might, i can not bring myself to say a good thing about these. The mid and treble are pretty average really but the bass... What bass? Don't get me wrong, i'm not looking for headphones to play the latest phat beats, as i believe the youth of today might say, but i just want a little life in my music. Yes the XB40EX are quite a bassy phone so you may think i'm just comparing the XBA1 to those but i also use a Bowers and Wilkins Zeppelin Mini and some Beyer Dynamic phones, both of which sound lovely without a particular emphasis on bass.
I genuinely can't try and dissuade you enough from buying these. I ran a few tests with friends whereby we listened to four sets of phones. They weren't informed of the price and had no preconceptions. The XBA1 came out of the test far worse than any other set. We even agreed that a set of 5 year old Sony over ears with foam pads that cost £12 sounded better.
I normally read many reviews of items i buy before i make the purchase but on this occasion i foolishly rushed in due to a faith in Sony. That faith is now long gone and i certainly shan't make the same mistake again.
I hope this is of some help.