Sony XBA-1iP review: Sony XBA-1iP

The headphone comes with four sizes of silicone eartips and three sizes of noise-isolating tips. That's a fairly generous selection, so you should have no trouble achieving a good fit. The "L" and "R" markings on the earpieces are fairly small, so they might be difficult to see in low light conditions. Accessories include a cord adjuster, a flat plastic spool to organize cable slack, a wire clip to secure the cable to your clothing, and a small travel pouch.

Performance
The XBA-1iP may be the least expensive XBA headphone, but its refined character and poise is quite impressive. The XBA-1iPs hit all the right notes on Norah Jones' "Come Away With Me" album; her vocals naturally amplify the full-bodied piano, acoustic guitars, bass, and drums. The music also exhibited a lively character with a strong dynamic attack and particularly spatial stereo imaging. So much so, in fact, that I noted the cymbals and percussion instruments sounded more airily realistic than they do with most $100 in-ear headphones.

The XBA-1iPs certainly sound more transparent than the original Monster Turbine in-ear headphones with more favorable clarity and definition, but the Turbine's bass hits with a harder thump. Buyers who live on a steady diet of rock, dance, or hip-hop may find the XBA-1iPs' low-end tones lacking fervor.

Conclusion
The $100 Sony XBA-1iPs are best-suited for buyers craving high-resolution headphones with a natural appeal that contrasts with modern, bass-focused buds.

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Quick Specifications See All

  • Weight 0.2 oz
  • Sound Output Mode stereo
  • Additional Features gold-plated plug
  • Type headset
  • Headphones Form Factor in-ear
  • Connector Type mini-phone stereo 3.5 mm 4-pole