Mpow H5 Wireless vs Sony WH-CH500 Wireless
Side-by-Side Comparison

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Test Bench
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Review

Main Differences
Threshold

Full Comparison

- Ratings
Mixed Usage
What it is: This is the combination of the different use cases to evaluate how versatile the headphones are. Therefore an everyday headphone should be well-rounded enough to adapt to most situations and environments without significant losses in sound quality, design ergonomics or isolation.
Score components:
Neutral Listening
What it is: The level of audio fidelity a headphone can reproduce a neutral sound profile. Therefore a balanced and true representation of bass, mids, treble, soundstage and imaging, as well as a comfortable listening experience, is essential for critical listening.
Commute/Travel
What it is: How well the headphones handle the loud environments involved in commuting or traveling. Therefore your listening experience should be comfortable, hassle-free and as isolated from noise as possible.
Sports/Fitness
What it is: How well-adapted the headphones are, to use while doing sports or strenuous exercise. Therefore the headphones should not be too cumbersome and deliver a stable and comfortable listening experience.
Office
What it is: How well the headphones can deliver a comfortable and isolated listening experience in an office-like environment. They should not leak much and should block the noise of a busy office.
Wireless Gaming
What it is: This usage rating indicates how good the headphones are for non-Bluetooth wireless gaming, especially long sessions of multiplayer fast action games such driving simulators and first-person shooters. It emphasizes comfort, proprietary wireless latency, neutral and consistent sound, and microphone quality.
Wired Gaming
What it is: This usage rating indicates how good the headphones are for wired gaming, especially long sessions of multiplayer fast action games such driving simulators and first-person shooters. It emphasizes comfort, wired latency, neutral and consistent sound, and microphone quality.
Phone Call
What it is: How clear and intelligible the microphone of the headphone sounds, how well it captures speech in noisy environments, and how well it reproduces the voice of the other person. Other important factors are the amount of noise isolation the headphone provides to the user, as well as their comfort.
- Main
Type
Enclosure
Wireless
Noise-Cancelling
Mic
Transducer
- Design
Score components:
Design Picture
- Style
Design Picture 2
- Comfort
What it is: Adjustability and degrees of freedom, pressure, stiffness and weight.
When it matters: When the headphones are going to be used for long durations.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Comfort Picture
Weight
Clamping Force
What it is: The force that the headphones exert on your head, once you have them on. This is purely a measurement of the force applied, which does not take into account the earpad's surface area and the resulting pressure you will feel, on or around your ears.
When it matters: The tighter the headphones, the more force they put on your head. This can get uncomfortable or cause pain and soreness during long listening sessions.
- Controls
What it is: The control scheme of the headphones, the number of functions provided, button layout and ergonomics as well as the quality of tactile feedback.
When it matters: If you want to control volume, pause your music or make phone calls without directly interacting with your audio device.
Controls Picture
OS Compatibility
What it is: Testing the headphones' controls to see which operating system they work with.
When it matters: The controls on some wired headphones aren't compatible with all operating systems so this allows you to check if the controls will work with your device.
Ease of use
Feedback
Call/Music Control
Volume Control
Microphone Control
Channel Mixing
What it is: Being able to mix audio channels directly on the headphones.
When it matters: This is most useful when using a separate chat software so that you can mix in-game audio and chat audio depending on your needs.
Noise Canceling Control
Talk-Through
What it is: A transparency feature that uses the mics of the headphones to let you hear what is doing on around you without removing them.
When it matters: If you want to be aware of what is going on around you without removing your headphones or while still listening to your audio. This is typically a feature for the noise canceling headphones and passively isolating in-ears that block a lot of noise.
Good value: Yes or adjustable.
Additional Buttons
- Breathability
What it is: How hot the headphones get when you wear them for an extended period of time.
When it matters: If you often have long listening sessions or use your headphones while doing physical activities like running or working out.
Score components:
Breathability After Picture
Avg.Temp.Difference
- Portability
What it is: The volume of space occupied by the headphones when folded into their most compact format.
When it matters: If you're often on the move and need to carry your headphones in a bag, purse , or pocket.
Score components:
Portability Picture
L
W
H
Volume
Transmitter required
- Case
What it is: The provided carrying options to protect your headphones when transporting them.
When it matters: To prevent damaging your headphones, if you often carry them in your bag or pocket.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Case Picture
Type
L
W
H
Volume
- Build Quality
What it is: Durability, material quality, cheap/expensive feel.
When it matters: When the headphones are going to be used by multiple users (classes/studios), by children, in tough conditions, on a daily basis, or for exercise.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Build Quality Picture
- Stability
What it is: How the headphones are designed to prevent them from slipping off your ears or falling off your head.
When it matters: If you plan on using the headphones while doing sports or other physical activities that requires a lot of movement.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Stability Picture
- Headshots 1
Angled Picture
Side Picture
- Headshots 2
Front Picture
Rear Picture
- Top
Top Picture
- Sound
What it is: The tests are performed with the headphones' most commonly used features enabled (noise-cancelling, wireless, etc.)
- Sound Profile
What it is: The overall sound signature of the headphones. The general tonal balance between the bass, mid and treble ranges of the frequency response. The sound signature curved we use is a smoother version of the frequency response.
When it matters: When you want to find a headphones that matches your listening taste.
Sound Profile Graph
Neutral
What it is: How much the headphones frequency response is balanced and follows a variant of the Harman target curve
When it matters: When you want to listen to what most content were mastered at
Bass-Heavy
What it is: How much the headphones have energy in the bass range. Note that this number won't tell you how good the bass is. The higher the number, the more bass it has.
When it matters: When you want to hear more the low frequencies, such as those of kick drums and bass guitar.
Warm
What it is: How much the headphones doesn't have energy in the treble range relatively to the mid range. Note that this number won't tell you how good the treble is. The higher the number, the less treble it has.
When it matters: When you want to hear less the high frequencies, like the cymbals.
Bright
What it is: How much the headphones have energy in the treble range relatively to the mid range. Note that this number won't tell you how good the treble is. The higher the number, the more treble it has.
When it matters: When you want to hear more the high frequencies, like the cymbals.
- Peaks/Dips
What it is: How well the sound frequency response follow its own sound profile. The sound profile curve used is a smoother version of its own frequency response. Therefore, the peaks and dips represents the "wiggles" of the frequency response.
When it matters: When you want to hear all the frequencies without overemphasis
Score components:
Peaks/Dips Graph
Peaks
What it is: Standard error of the frequency response above the sound profile line.
When it matters: When you don't want some frequencies to be overemphasis.
Good value: < 1.5 db
Noticeable difference: 0.5 db
Dips
What it is: Standard error of the frequency response below the sound profile line.
When it matters: When you want to hear all frequencies.
Good value: < 1.5 db
Noticeable difference: 0.5 db
- Frequency Response Consistency
What it is: The amount of deviation of each frequency response pass, from the average frequency response.
When it matters: Shows how consistently the headphones perform after re-positioning them.
Score components:
Consistency L
Consistency R
Avg. Std. Deviation
What it is: The average amount of deviation in frequency response of 5 re-seats, from the average frequency response.
When it matters: Shows how consistently the headphones perform after re-positioning them.
Good value: <0.5
Noticeable difference: 0.1
- Raw Frequency Response
What it is: The average uncompensated frequency response of the headphone. For in-ears and earbuds, this corresponds to the average of 5 measurements/re-seats on the dummy head (HMS). For over/on-ear headphones, this corresponds to the average of 5 measurements/re-seats on the HMS (Head Measurement System) for the mid and treble ranges, and 5 measurements/re-seats on 5 human subjects for the bass range.
When it matters: This is for those who want to see the raw and uncompensated frequency response of the headphone. Some of the more advanced users, are able to read and evaluate headphone frequency response in its raw form and without compensation. This will be especially useful to them if they have their own headphone compensation/target curve, which may differ from the compensation curve/target response used by RTINGS.com.
Raw FR L
Raw FR R
- Imaging
What it is: Imaging qualities are inherent to the audio content, the headphones have to 'reproduce' them rather than 'create' them. They determine how accurately the objects are positioned in the stereo image, and how transparent the imaging is.
When it matters: When accurate positioning of the objects in the stereo image, and clear and transparent imaging is desired.
Group Delay
Phase Response
Weighted Group Delay
What it is: The average amount of group delay calculated based on a perceptual weighting filter. Group delay indicates how long it takes for each frequency to reach their maximum amplitude. This is a monaural quality and can be perceived even with one ear.
When it matters: Headphones with lower group delay have more transparent imaging and a tighter bass. Headphones with higher group delay in the bass range tend to have a wimpy and loose bass, and headphones with higher group delay in the treble range tend to have a less transparent imaging.
Good value: <0.5
Noticeable difference: 0.1
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
What it is: The Left/Right balance of our test unit, that is, the amount of amplitude difference between the left and right drivers. This is not a design test, but a marker for quality control and ergonomics.
When it matters: When a properly balanced stereo image and good quality control is desired. A poor score indicates a noticeable difference in level between the left and right drivers.
Good value: <1.5
Noticeable difference: 0.1
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
What it is: The amount of difference (Std. Err.) between the frequency response of the left and right drivers of our test unit. This is not a design test, but a marker for quality controls and ergonomics.
When it matters: When an even and stable stereo image, as well as a good quality control, is desired. A poor score indicates there may be 'holes' in the stereo image at certain frequencies.
Good value: <2
Noticeable difference: 0.1
Weighted Phase Mismatch
What it is: The amount of difference (Std. Err.) between the phase response of the left and right drivers of our test unit. This is not a design test, but a marker for quality control and ergonomics.
When it matters: When an even and stable stereo image, as well as a good quality control is desired. A poor score indicates there may be inaccuracies in the stereo image reproduction at certain frequencies.
Good value: <16
Noticeable difference: 3
- Soundstage
What it is: Soundstage qualities are not inherent to the audio content, the headphones have to 'create' them rather than 'reproduce' them. They determine whether the sound is perceived to be coming from inside or in front of the head, how open and spacious the soundstage is, how much the headphones acoustically interact with the environment, and how strong the phantom center is.
When it matters: When an accurately produced, large and spacious soundstage, similar to that of a stereo loudspeaker setup is desired.
PRTF
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
What it is: The standard deviation of the PRTF (Pinna-related transfer function) of the headphones compared to a reference loudspeaker's PRTF at 30°. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This test does not apply to in-ears and earbuds, due to the lack of pinna interaction.
When it matters: An accurate pinna activation is mainly responsible for how natural and speaker-like the soundstage is perceived to be. The less error in the shape of the PRTF, the more natrual and speaker-like the perception of the soundstage will be. High amounts of error may indicate a soundstage that is unnatural or odd.
Good value: <2.5
Noticeable difference: 0.1
PRTF Size (Avg.)
What it is: The average amplitude of the PRTF (Pinna-related transfer function) of the headphones compared to that of a reference loudspeaker's PRTF at 30°. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This test does not apply to in-ears and earbuds, due to the lack of pinna interaction.
When it matters: This value is responsible for the perceived size of the soundstage. The higher the value, the larger the perceived size of the soundstage. However, values above the reference (5.0dB) could result in a soundstage that is perceived as unnatural or odd.
Good value: >3.7
Noticeable difference: 0.1
PRTF Distance
What it is: The depth of the "10KHz notch" of the headphone's PRTF, which is caused by phase cancellations at the concha. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This test does not apply to in-ears and earbuds, due to the lack of pinna interaction.
When it matters: This value is mainly responsible for the perceived distance and elevation of the soundstage. A small distance value may result in a soundstage that is perceived to be located inside the head. Larger values may help pull the soundstage out from inside of the head and bring it to the front.
Good value: >13
Noticeable difference: 1
Openness
What it is: How open the headphones are, and how open and spacious they sound. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This test differentiates between acoustically and electronically produced crosstalk and only takes the acoustically generated crosstalk into account. This value is the inverse of the Noise Isolation test score, and could be indirectly related the acoustic impedance of the headphones.
When it matters: When a headphone with a sense of an open, and spacious soundstage is desired. A value of 10 indicates a fully open headphone, and a value of 0 indicates a fully closed headphone.
Good value: >7.5
Noticeable difference: 0.5
Acoustic Space Excitation
What it is: How loud the headphones are, and how much they excite their environment acoustically. If the headphones are loud and open enough, the sound leaking from the headphones will be affected by the environment (reflections/reverb) before reflecting back into the open headphones and to the listener's ears. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This value is the inverse of the Leakage test score.
When it matters: Headphones with higher excitation values, similar to openness, tend to have soundstages that are perceived as more open and spacious.
Good value: >7.5
Noticeable difference: 0.5
- Weighted Harmonic Distortion
What it is: The amount of subtle, unwanted frequencies (harmonics) produced alongside the intended frequencies by the headphones. This test differs from Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) by applying a perceptual filter to each individual harmonic before calculating the total. Higher harmonics and frequencies are given more weight.
When it matters: When clean and pure sound reproduction is desired. Harmonic distortion is relatively difficult to hear, so it should only matter to those who care about the fidelity of sound reproduction.
Score components:
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
What it is: The overall amount of harmonic distortion produced by the headphones at 90dB SPL. This test differs from Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) by applying a perceptual filter to each individual harmonic before calculating the total. Higher harmonics and frequencies are given more weight.
When it matters: When a pure and clean sound is desired at moderate listening levels. Harmonic distortion is relatively difficult to hear, so it should only matter to those who really care about the fidelity of sound reproduction.
WHD @ 100
What it is: The overall amount of harmonic distortion produced by the headphones at 100dB SPL. This test differs from Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) by applying a perceptual filter to each individual harmonic before calculating the total. Higher harmonics and frequencies are given more weight.
When it matters: When a pure and clean sound is desired at moderate listening levels. Harmonic distortion is relatively difficult to hear, so it should only matter to those who really care about the fidelity of sound reproduction.
- Isolation
Score components:
- Noise Isolation
What it is: How much outside noise is blocked out by putting the headphones on.
When it matters: If the headphones are going to be used in a noisy environment (airplane, subway, etc.)
Score components:
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
What it is: The simulated noise isolation of the headphones, demonstrating how much outside noise is blocked out by putting the headphones on. This recording is created using an EQ and is not an actual recording. For headphones with ANC (active noise cancellation), the playback simulates the isolation with ANC enabled.
When it matters: When the headphones are going to be used in a noisy envinronment (airplane, subway, etc.)
Overall Attenuation
What it is: The overall amount of environmental noise reduction in dB.
When it matters: In loud envinronments like planes, trains, offices, etc.
Good value: <-20dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
Bass
What it is: The overall amount of noise isolation in the bass range (20Hz-250Hz).
When it matters: When the outside noise is bass-heavy, like in airplanes.
Good value: <-15dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
Mid
What it is: The overall amount of noise isolation in the mid-range (250Hz-2.5KHz).
When it matters: When the environment's noise is mid-heavy, like in an office.
Good value: <-15dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
Treble
What it is: The overall amount of noise isolation in the treble range (2.5KHz-20KHz).
When it matters: When the environment's noise is treble-heavy. Although uncommon, areas with sharp sounds fall under this category.
Good value: <-30dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
- Leakage
What it is: The amount of sound bleeding out of the headphones.
When it matters: When the listener doesn't want people around them (in office, recording studio, etc.) to hear what is being listened to.
Score components:
Leakage
Leakage Audio
What it is: The simulated sound leakage heard 1 foot away from the user, while the user is listening to a 100dB SPL signal. This recording is created using an EQ and is not an actual recording.
When it matters: When you don't want people to hear what you are listening to.
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
What it is: The amount of sound leakage heard 1 foot away from the user, while the user is listening to a 100dB SPL signal.
When it matters: When you don't want people hear what you are listening to.
Good value: <35dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
- Microphone
What it is: The microphone section shows the quality of speech capture and transmission by the mic, as well as how well the microphone under test handles noisy environments.
When it matters: For your speech to be transmitted to and understood properly by the listener, the microphone needs to have a good recording quality. If the environment the microphone is being used in is noisy, a microphone with a good noise handling performance would be needed as well.
Score components:
Integrated
What it is: The microphone integrated in the ear cup or ear bud of a wireless headphone.
When it matters: For calls, gaming and voice over IP software or for any other use of the microphone.
Good value: Yes
In-line
What it is: The microphone inside the in-line remote of audio cables for wired and wireless headsets.
When it matters: In-line microphone are usually better than integrated mics. If you need better recording quality and noise handling for calls, gaming and voice over IP software then use the audio cable of your wired or wireless headphone if it has an inline microphone.
Good value: Yes
Boom
What it is: A typically better microphone, that's also adjustable and extends so that the mic is closer to your mouth.
When it matters: Much better recording quality and noise handling than in-line or integrated mics. Primarily used for gaming and voice over IP software.
Good value: Yes
Detachable Boom
What it is: A boom mic that is detachable from the headset.
When it matters: If you want to use your headphone outdoors without the bulk and hassle of the Boom mic.
- Recording Quality
What it is: Microphone recording quality shows how natural, neutral, extended and intelligible speech would be with the device under test, in a quiet environment.
When it matters: A microphone with a good recording quality ensures that the person listening to you would hear a full, clear, and easily understandable speech. Therefore, it is important whenever a good quality of speech transmission and intelligibility is needed.
Score components:
Microphone Frequency Response
Recorded Speech
What it is: Actual audio recording of the headphone's microphone, recorded while placed on the dummy head, with speech being played back through the dummy head's mouth simulator.
When it matters: When a clean, full, and intelligible speech transmission is required.
LFE
What it is: Low-frequency extension shows how deep the bass response of the microphone is, and therefore, how deep and full your voice would sound to the listener. It is the lowest frequency at which the frequency response reaches -3dB of the target response.
When it matters: LFE is not a big factor in speech intelligibility and even speech recorded with a mic that has an LFE of 500Hz could still be easily understood. Therefore, it is mostly important if you are concerned with how deep and full your voice would be heard.
Good value: <150Hz
Noticeable difference: 30Hz
FR Std. Dev.
What it is: Frequency Response Standard Deviation shows how accurately and balanced sound is captured by the microphone at each frequency. FR Std. Dev. is calculated between LFE and HFE, and the rest of the spectrum is ignored.
When it matters: A good frequency response is desired when a natural and neutral speech quality is desired. As opposed to HFE which is more a metric for speech intelligibility, frequency response could be considered as a metric for a natural and neutral sound.
Good value: >3.5dB
Noticeable difference: 0.5dB
HFE
What it is: High-frequency extension is the highest frequency at which the frequency response reaches -3dB of the target response. It shows how extended the treble response of the microphone is.
When it matters: HFE is one the most important factors in speech intelligibility. The higher the HFE, the brighter, more open, and more extended the speech quality will be which makes it a lot easier to understand by the listener.
Good value: >8KHz
Noticeable difference: 1KHz
Weighted THD
What it is: The unwanted frequencies (harmonics) produced alongside the intended frequencies, which cause deformation of an output signal compared to its input.
When it matters: When clean and pure sound reproduction is desired, though its effect is not as noticable as frequency response.
Good value: <1.5
Noticeable difference: 1.0
Gain
What it is: Shows how much louder the microphone can go above our reference loudness level. The gain value is reported relative to our reference level, which is 94dB at a distance of 5cm from the mouth.
When it matters: A microphone with a high gain is important when the input signal (speech) is very quiet. For example when whispering, or talking on the phone in a library.
Good value: >18dB
Noticeable difference: 3dB
- Noise Handling
What it is: How well the microphone is able to separate speech from background noise, so that the transmission would include more voice and less noise.
When it matters: When a clean and intelligible speech transmission is desired in a noisy situation like talking on the phone on a busy street or on the bus.
Score components:
SpNR
Speech + Pink Noise
Speech + Subway Noise
SpNR
What it is: Speech to Noise Ratio is the difference in level between speech and background noise as heard by the listener
When it matters: If the microphone is going to be used in a noisy environment, it is important for it to be able to separate the speech from background noise, so the voice would be easily audible and understandable.
Good value: >24dB
Noticeable difference: 3dB
- Active Features
What it is: Headphones with active components that require a battery. This includes noise cancelling and wireless headphones that actively reduce noise or transmit audio via a wireless connection.
When it matters: How suitable the power and wireless specifications of an active headphone will be, depending on your listening habits. The range and/or discharge time of the active headphone you select will be important if you're often on the move or have long uninterrupted listening sessions.
Score components:
- Battery
What it is: The power source of your headphones. All headphones with active features have a battery that will deplete over time.
When it matters: To continue using the active features of your headphones. Some models lose features or switch off completely when the battery is drained, which limits what you can do with them until the next charge.
Battery Type
What it is: The type of battery that the headphones use. Usually AAA or embedded, Li-ion rechargeable batteries.
When it matters: When your headphones run out of power. Rechargeable batteries usually charge via the headphones Micro-USB port whereas AAA batteries have to be replaced or charged with an external device.
Continuous Battery Life
What it is: The amount of continuous battery life provided by the headphones. For truly wireless headphones this excludes the additional charges provided by their case.
When it matters: For active headphones that connect wirelessly, have noise cancellation or other audio-enhancing features, that cease to work once the battery is dead.
Good value: >10hrs
Noticeable difference: 0.5hrs
Additional Charges
What it is: The number of full charges that the case of the headphones provides. This value is as reported by the manufacturer and not validated by us, so the real-life performance may vary.
When it matters: For truly wireless headphones that have a short continuous battery life, it is useful to be able to charge them with their case on the go. However, the ideal headphone provides a long continuous battery life, therefore a short continuous battery life with a high number of additional charges may not be desirable.
Total Battery Life
What it is: The total amount of battery life provided by the headphones including any possible additional charges provided by their case. This value is calculated based on the number of additional charges reported by the manufacturer, therefore real-life performance may vary.
When it matters: For active headphones that connect wirelessly, have noise cancellation or other audio-enhancing features, that cease to work once the battery is dead.
Good value: >10hrs
Noticeable difference: 0.5hrs
Charge Time
What it is: The amount of time your active headphones have to be connected to a power source to charge from 0 to a 100%. However, charging time will vary depending on your power source.
When it matters: To be able to use the active features of your headphones. Especially, wireless ones that completely switch off and need to be recharged when the battery is dead.
Good value: 2h or less
Noticeable difference: 0.25h
Power Saving Feature
What it is: A feature that turns off the headphones, after a set time, when they're not in use.
When it matters: To prolong battery life when the headphones are not being used, or if you forget to manually turn off your headphones.
Audio while charging
What it is: Some active headphones remain usable while charging. They continue to stream audio and do not disable other active features.
When it matters: This makes sure that your headphones's battery are not being drained when you're relatively close to a power source. However, this means wireless headphones will need a wired connection to the power source during the charging process.
Passive Playback
What it is: Active headphones that still work when all their active features are turned off or out of power.
When it matters: If you run out of power and do not have spare AA/AAA batteries or access to a power source to recharge your headphones.
Charging Port
- App Support
What it is: The additional app provided to enhance your listening experience. They typically deliver a set of practical features that give you more control over the sound, noise cancelling and effects that the headphones produce.
When it matters: An app with a lot of features allows you to customize your listening experience to suit your taste and preferences. For example, additions like an equalizer can give you more bass or treble and room effects can simulate a bigger Soundstage in closed back headphones.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
App Picture
App Name
iOS
Android
Mac OS
Windows
Equalizer
What it is: Parametric, graphic or preset sound profiles that slightly alter the frequency response.
When it matters: If you want to tailor, your listening experience. Depending on what you're listening to you may want more or less bass for some tracks or more mid-range for vocals-heavy audio.
ANC control
What it is: Control over the Active noise canceling technology. This could be either a simple on/off button, and adjustable slider or even adaptive self-regulating noise cancellation.
When it matters: If you're in an environment where you need to monitor your surroundings or completely isolate yourself from ambient noise.
Mic Control
Room effects
What it is: Room effects that enhance the audio quality to make it more immersive.
When it matters: If you want to further tweak your listening experience. Adding room effects, can simulate a more spacious Soundstage or deliver a surround sound-like feel.
Playback control
What it is: An in-app player that gives you access to play/stop, track skipping or volume controls directly with the app.
When it matters: It's a shortcut that allows you to control your audio without leaving the application.
Button Mapping
Surround Sound
- Connectivity
What it is: The inputs and outputs of wired and wireless headphones, as well as their latency performance and range.
When it matters: When you want to know whether your headphones will be compatible with your various audio sources, like your smartphone, tablet, gaming consoles, PC, smart TV, amplifiers, etc.
Score components:
- Bluetooth
What it is: Bluetooth support for wireless headphones.
When it matters: When you want to connect your headphones wirelessly to a Bluetooth source, like your smartphone, tablet, PC or smart TV.
Bluetooth Version
What it is: The version of Bluetooth that the headphones support.
When it matters: Newer versions of Bluetooth, when paired with devices that support the same version, may have improved latency and wireless range performance.
Multi-Device Pairing
What it is: A Bluetooth profile that allows some headphones to be simultaneously connected to multiple Bluetooth sources, and have full call and media support on both/all devices they are connected to.
When it matters: To quickly switch between your Bluetooth sources. For example, switching from your phone to your home or work PC and still have call and media support on both devices.
Good value: 2 devices.
NFC Pairing
What it is: Near Field Communication technology that allows you to quickly, pair your headphones with your Bluetooth and NFC-enabled device.
When it matters: This makes pairing with an NFC-enabled device a lot easier than the typical and often tedious hold-to-pair procedure that most wireless headphones have.
Good value: Yes
Line of Sight Range
What it is: The range that the wireless headphones can reach before dropping any audio when in direct line of sight of the Bluetooth device.
When it matters: If you can't or prefer not to carry your Bluetooth source on you while listening to your audio in a large and open environment.
Good value: >170ft
Noticeable difference: 10ft
Default Latency
What it is: The amount of delay introduced by the headphones using their default (SBC) codec. This could cause the audio and video to become out of sync.
When it matters: When watching videos or playing video games wirelessly, high latency can cause sync issues between the images you see and the audio you hear.
Good value: <100 ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
aptX Latency
What it is: The amount of delay introduced by the headphones using their aptX codec. This could cause the audio and video to become out of sync.
When it matters: For better sound quality if you often stream music over Bluetooth. It also slightly improves latency when watching videos with wireless headphones.
Good value: <100 ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
aptX(LL) Latency
What it is: The amount of delay introduced by the headphones using their aptX Low Latency codec. This could cause the audio and video to become out of sync.
When it matters: When watching videos or playing video games wirelessly, high latency can cause sync issues between the images you see and the audio you hear.
Good value: <100 ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
- Non-Bluetooth Wireless
What it is: Non-Bluetooth wireless support for wireless headphones. Whether the headphones come a non-Bluetooth wireless protocol (usually proprietary).
When it matters: Non-Bluetooth proprietary wireless protocols tend to provide a better audio and microphone quality, as well as lower latency. This makes them suitable for wireless gaming.
Score components:
Non-BT Line of Sight Range
What it is: The range that the headphones can reach before dropping any audio when in direct line of sight using their non-Bluetooth wireless protocol.
When it matters: If you can't or prefer not to carry your wireless source on you while listening to your audio in a large and open environment.
Good value: >170ft
Noticeable difference: 10ft
Non-BT Latency
What it is: The amount of delay introduced by the headphones. This could cause the audio and video to become out of sync.
When it matters: When watching videos or playing video games wirelessly, high latency can cause sync issues between the images you see and the audio you hear.
Good value: <100 ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
- Wired
What it is: The type and compatibility of audio cables for wired and wireless headphones and the amount of latency provided with that connection.
When it matters: When you want to use your headphones wired with a device that has a regular audio jack (line-out), like a smartphone, PC, or gaming console controller. A low latency would be important for gamers.
Score components:
Cable Picture
Analog Audio
What it is: When your headphones can play analog media using a standard 1/8" TRS audio jack. Includes using a 1/4" or 1/16" TRS with a 1/8" TRS adapter.
When it matters: For listening to music with devices that have a standard 1/8" TRS audio jack, like an MP3 player, tablet, smartphone or PC.
Good value: Yes
USB Audio
What it is: When your headphones can play digital media using a standard USB connector.
When it matters: For listening to music on a PC. A digital USB adapter can offer some advantages over a regular audio jack, like a DAC or added software support.
Good value: Yes
Detachable
Length
Connection
Wired Latency
What it is: The amount of delay introduced by the headphones over their analog or USB connection. This could cause the audio and video to become out of sync.
When it matters: When watching videos or playing video games over analog or USB, high latency can cause sync issues between the images you see and the audio you hear.
Good value: <100 ms
Noticeable difference: 15 ms
- PC / PS4 Compatibility
What it is: Whether you can use headphones for audio and/or microphone with a PC or PlayStation 4 using analog, USB, or wireless.
When it matters: This is important for PC or PS4 users who would like to know what kind of connection they can use with their headphones. Analog provide the least latency, then USB. Wireless tends have the highest latency, but provides the most range.
PC / PS4 Analog
What it is: PC / PS4 compatibility with a regular 1/8" TRS or TRRS audio cable.
When it matters: When you want to use a wired headphone with your PC or PS4 controller.
Good value: Audio
PC / PS4 Wired USB
What it is: Compatibility with the PC or PlayStation 4 over USB.
When it matters: To be able to use audio and microphone of the headphones with PC / PS4 using their USB connection.
Good value: Audio
PC / PS4 Non-BT Wireless
What it is: Non-Bluetooth wireless compatibility with the PC or PlayStation 4.
When it matters: To connect your headphones wirelessly with your PC / PS4, without using Bluetooth.
Good value: Audio
- Xbox One Compatibility
What it is: Whether you can use headphones for audio and/or microphone with a Xbox One using analog, USB, or wireless.
When it matters: This is important for Xbox One users who would like to know what kind of connection they can use with their headphones. Analog provide the least latency, then USB. Wireless tends have the highest latency, but provides the most range.
Xbox Analog
What it is: Xbox One compatibility with a regular 1/8" TRS or TRRS audio cable.
When it matters: When you want to use a wired headphone with your Xbox One controller.
Good value: Audio
Xbox Wired USB
What it is: Compatibility with the Xbox One over USB.
When it matters: To be able to use audio and microphone of the headphones with Xbox One, using their USB connection.
Xbox Wireless
What it is: Wireless compatibility with the Xbox One.
When it matters: To connect your headphones wirelessly with your Xbox One.
Good value: Audio
- Base/Dock
What it is: The base station, dock, or dongle transmitter of wireless headphones that receive data/audio via a specific frequency range or wired headphones that have a proprietary amp.
When it matters: When you need to know which inputs and outputs the headphones support, so you can set them up with your home theatre system for gaming or watching movies.
Score components:
Type
What it is: The type of base/dock the headphones use, whether a USB dongle, charging case or docking station. Wired or wireless.
When it matters: Larger docking stations tend to have more controls and sometimes even customization options while smaller USB dongles are more portable. Charging cases allow you to keep your earbuds charged on-the-go.
USB Input
What it is: A digital USB input instead of a typical 1/8 TRS line-in.
When it matters: A USB connection can provide both an audio input and power to the Dock or Base station.
Line In
What it is: The regular wired input via a 1/8" TRS audio jack.
When it matters: For any device that has a line out for audio transmission.
Good value: Yes
Line Out
What it is: A regular 1/8TRS audio jack output.
When it matters: If you need to share the audio source with other devices. A line out lets you connect other headphones or speakers to the dock/base station.
Good value: Yes
Optical Input
What it is: Optical input for audio.
When it matters: Optical can carry a bit more data at faster speeds than typical wired connection which allows for more high quality, lossless audio.
Good value: Yes
RCA Input
What it is: Audio input using via an RCA connectors.
When it matters: Provides better stereo audio to the dock/base that's then transmitted to the headphones.
Good value: Yes
Dock Charging
What it is: Charging the headphones via the dock/base station instead of a charging cable.
When it matters: It makes charging your headphones easier and gives you a sport to store your headphones when they are not in use.
Good value: Yes
Power Supply
What it is: The connector type of the power source for the base/dock.
When it matters: The accessibility of the power source. For example, a power supply with USB/USB-C connects to multiple devices, PC , PS4, Xbox One or even with your regular phone charger whereas an AC adapter is less common.
Good value: USB/USB-C
- In the box
In the box Picture
- Compared to other Headphones
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