We’ve been testing our fair share of headphones over the past few months including over ear and also in-ear types. Today we have the Sony MDR-10RBT wireless over-ear headphones. The MDR-1(0) range consists of many headphones and the pair we are looking at today sit in the middle. They cost £199 on the Sony.co.uk which makes them £100 cheaper than their premium counterpart the MDR-1RBT’s.
The packaging of the MDR-10RBT headphones is nothing to really rave about. The box is nice and simple and on the rear you will find some information about the product, a couple of images and also the contents of the box.
As you start to un-box the headphones there is a small pull tab to help you remove the insides of the box, as well as foam pads to help keep the product in place during transport or while being displaying within a shop.
The headphones themselves are manufactured from plastic and the 2 ear cups have the standard spherical shape with an extra part protruding from them to which the leather ear pads are attached. The top part of the headband is padded and lined with the same fabric as the ear-pads. It’s also adjustable to ensure every user receives a perfect fit for both the left and right ear cup.
Weighing just 210g means you can wear them for hours and not feel any strain on your neck. It makes them ultra portable enabling you to also wear them around your neck when not actively listening to them. Sony also give you a nice fabric carry pouch in the box which you can use to store them when not in use or when on the move. Located at the top of the pouch you’ll also find a smaller compartment in which you can store the AUX cable and micro-USB charging cable.
The frequency 2.4GHz is used and can be used up to a range of 10m which enables you to listen to your device wirelessly while walking around pretty easily. We found the connection to be great while our iPod touch was placed in a backpack, and it didn’t fail or drop once, even when walking through a busy outdoor town center. Another nice feature included is that NFC is included for ‘one-touch connection’, which definitely helps to speed to process of Bluetooth pairing up.
Of one completely full charge Sony say that you can get 17 hours playback time, but when we tested this out we managed just over 17.5 hours which is pretty damn good. Standby time is noted at an incredible 450 hours!
Both aptX and the more well known A2DP are both supported. A2DP support is sufficient for your average daily users and provides a nice audio experience so long as the audio sources are of good quality. For those devices which support aptX you will receive a much crisper and more defined sound, but to take full advantage of this it is recommended you use an uncompressed audio format.
In terms of bass the Sony MDR-10RBT’s has a nice kick to it without overpowering the others.
We listened with and without the cable (Bluetooth) back to back to see if we could detect a noticeable difference between the quality which is normally what you would expect. Quite surprisingly it was very difficult to actually notice much of a difference and again for your everyday listener we really don’t think you loose much by going wireless. Saying this if you’re not your everyday listener and more of an audio professional you may want to stick to the wired connection. This may also be the case if you’re listening to music with a greater range such as classical.
Each ear cup has a variety of controls located on the bottom side which makes using your audio device that much easier. On the left cup you will find the 3.5mm AUX input, micro-USB port for charging the headphones, the power button and also a small LED to indicate pairing and also Bluetooth connectivity. Moving onto the right you will find a simple slider mechanism in which you use to skip, fast forward, skip backwards and rewind songs. By pressing the slider this allows you to play/pause as well as answering calls wirelessly thanks to the built in microphone on the ear cup. Also located here is the volume rocker.
These headphones are great. While they do sit below Sony’s top of the range over-ear Bluetooth headphones, the MDR-1RBTs and do also slightly lack some of the premium build quality they still offer incredibly good sound quality. You also have to take into account that the MDR-10RBTs cost £100 less than the top of the range pair so it really doesn’t bother me that much.
So if you’re looking for a light and portable wireless headset for on the go the Sony MDR-10RBTs will give you all of this as well as excellent audio quality.