Bowers & Wilkins P5 review: Bowers & Wilkins P5

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CNET Editors' Rating

4 stars Excellent

Average User Rating

5 stars 5 user reviews
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good Luxury build and styling. Even-handed yet exciting sound. Replaceable cables with iPhone mic.

The Bad Flimsy cable easily broken. Treble can become harsh.

The Bottom Line The Bowers & Wilkins P5 are an excellent set of headphones; however, the detachable cable is a problem.

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British company Bowers & Wilkins (or how it's more commonly known, B&W) has been making high-end speakers since Dr Phil started wearing long pants. Only in the past couple of years has the company dabbled in multimedia, but it has done so with great success: both of the Zeppelins and the MM-1 computer speakers are high quality products.

The P5 is B&W's biggest departure from its formula yet, in that it is the company's first set of headphones. Yet, true to the company's ethos, the set exudes a luxury look and feel. The headphones boast excellent build quality, with metal accents and a comfortable fit. The P5s are passive, noise-isolating models that are designed for use on the move and for at-home listening. The fit is tight, but very comfortable, meaning the minimum of outside noise leaks through. We didn't get any problems with ear sweats while using them.

The P5s come with a removable cable design, and this is where its problems begin. While the internal cable running between the ear pieces is covered in a protective cloth, the detachable cables are flimsy. So flimsy in fact that we broke the jack on the first day of use. As the cable connects inside the headpiece you won't be able to use an aftermarket cable as it will be too thick to fit.

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Where to Buy See all prices

Bowers & Wilkins P5 On-Ear Headphones (Black)

Part Number: P5
Typical Price: $499.00 Low Price: $346.05 See all prices

Quick Specifications See All

  • Weight 195 g
  • Sound Output Mode stereo
  • Features foldable
  • Type headphones
  • Headphones Form Factor ear-cup
  • Connector Type mini-phone stereo 3.5 mm