The Sony MDR-1000X is a pair of wireless and noise-cancelling headphones with a difference: you get to decide what noise you want to cancel.
Noise-cancelling headphones are great, but Sony argues that you ought to have some control over what you block out – and at IFA 2016, it’s hoping to give you exactly that.
Besides the standard, constant noise cancellation, the MDR-1000X features an ‘Ambient Sound’ mode, which will let in the voices close to you, or announcements on a train. There’s also a ‘Quick Attention’ mode, which lets you pause noise cancellation by holding the right ear cup. This is designed to let you have a quick chat without taking your headphones off.
Sound quality remains a priority. The headphones feature LDAC, Sony’s own high-bitrate take on Bluetooth. Built-in DSEE HX processing upscales low-quality files. There is also a Personal NC Optimizer function, which adjusts the sound by taking into account the shape of your head, how you wear headphones, or if you wear glasses.
The right ear cup is touch-sensitive, which lets you swipe and tap to control volume and playback. The left ear cup has NFC for quick Bluetooth pairing. You can expect 20 hours of battery in wireless mode, but a standard 3.5mm cable is included, along with a leather case.
The Sony MDR-1000X will be available in black or grey-beige in October 2016, priced at £330.
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