CES 2017: Hands-On With Sony's New MDR-XB950N1 Headphones

Yesterday at CES 2017, Sony held their press event and introduced a number of new products including four new EXTRA BASS speaker models, in the form of the Sony SRS-XB10, Sony SRS-XB20, Sony SRS-XB30 and Sony SRS-XB40. Along with those new speakers, Sony also announced two new Bluetooth headphones. These are the Sony MDR-XB950N1 and the MDR-XB950B1. Generally speaking, there is a fairly large amount of overlap between the two headphones, although the MDR-XB950N1 does come with one specific feature that the MDR-XB950B1 does not. Noise cancellation. Which does mean that with these headphones you do have the option of filtering out ambient noise and just tuning in to what you want to listen to, the music.

The Sony MDR-XB950N1 are headphones which are designed to be portable and as a result you can expect them to fold and the they do come with a carry case for added protection when in transit. These are headphones that are powered by 40 mm drivers and provide a frequency response of 20Hz-20,000Hz. In terms of battery life, the Sony MDR-XB950N1 are listed to offer up to 22 hours of playback. Although the level of battery usage on offer does depend on whether you are using the noise cancellation feature or not. Either way though, these headphones to come with a jack port. So regardless of whether they have a charged battery or not, they can be used in a traditional 'wired' manner by attaching the included cable. Of course, as these are EXTRA BASS headphones, they are also designed to offer the listener a deeper and more punchy sound.

In terms of availability, Sony has yet to provide firm details on when the MDR-XB950N1 headphones will become available to buy in the US. However, Sony has confirmed the MDR-XB950N1 will be available to buy in the UK and in Europe from April of this year. In terms of price, the MDR-XB950N1 will cost £230 in the UK and €280 in Europe and will be available in more than one color. Until then, you can take a closer look at this latest pair of noise canceling headphones from Sony in our hands-on gallery below.  

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John Anon

Editor-in-Chief
John has been writing about and reviewing tech products since 2014 after making the transition from writing about and reviewing airlines. With a background in Psychology, John has a particular interest in the science and future of the industry. Besides adopting the Managing Editor role at AH John also covers much of the news surrounding audio and visual tech, including cord-cutting, the state of Pay-TV, and Android TV. Contact him at [email protected]