|Sonxtronics Not as Good as Sony
Tantalizingly, these Sonxtronic XDR-8000 Vertical in Ear Ultralight Sport Running Headband Headphones, on Amazon, here, promised to be what the Sony MDR W08L headphones used to be, but they were disappointing. First, they were slightly less than ultralight, weighing 0.6 ounce compared to Sony's 0.5 ounce. Second, they were, inexplicably, longer, with a 44-inch length from apex to plug-in, compared to Sony's 5-inch-shorter 39-inch length. 5 inches may not sound like much, but it's the difference between being able to hold the player or put it in your pocket without a loop of cord swinging around pulling on the earpieces (which happened with the Sonxtronic) or not (the Sony). I'm 6-foot-3-inches, and even on me the extra 5 inches of cord was a drawback, not an improvement. Still, these were diminishments I could live with. What sunk the Sonxtronics for me was a small but definite inferiority of sound. The mid-tones are flatter, and the bass, thinner. Looking at the headphones, I could see superficial differences between the two: Sony's earpiece is a little smaller and its 5 sound apertures more closely spaced, the Sonxtronics is bigger, clumsier looking with its 5 larger apertures spread wider across the earpiece curve. I can't tell, of course, what's inside the headphones, Sony's website vaguely mentions, I seem to recall, neodymium magnets, but the Sonxtronics sound is definitely, yet only subtly, inferior. Even at $50 or $60 for a used Sony MDR W08L from a trusted vendor like The Professional Department on Amazon, I think the slightly better Sony sound would be worth it. It sure would be nice if somebody could figure out how to manufacture a closer duplicate of the now-discontinued Sony MDR W08Ls. Read more on my quest for better headphones here.
posted December 29, 2014, 7:25 pm
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