BARCELONA, Spain -- In addition to showing off its highly anticipated Galaxy S5, Samsung also showcased its new over-the-ear headphones, the Sound OG900. Coming in two sizes (a regular variant and an extra-large version with bigger ear pads), the headphones will be available in March, starting at around $275 (€200).
Lightweight with a smooth plastic construction, the Sound OG900 sports a minimalistic look that was supposedly inspired by pebbles. However, for its price, it feels a bit cheap. Especially considering other headphones, like the Jabra Revo, which feel much more premium and denser in the hand at a lower price.
Due to two hinges on its armatures, the headphones are foldable, making it easier to carry around. It also features nude-colored padding underneath the headband that matches the ear cushions.
Its detachable cable ends in a straight plug, and it includes a volume rocker that can also play, pause, and skip music tracks. The volume keys are located high up on the cable, which made it difficult for me to look down and see what buttons I was pressing.
Because it is a Samsung product after all, you can long press the center button on the volume rocker to launch S-Voice on your handset when your headphones are plugged in.
Overall, audio quality from the Sound OG900 was passable, but I wasn't overly impressed with it. During my brief listening session, I noticed that I could still hear outside noises quite clearly, even with music playing. Obviously the OG900 aren't noise-canceling or noise-isolating headphones, but the Audio-Technica ATH-M50, for example, aren't either, and they do a fine job at muffling background noise.
As a closed-back headphone, users will have to expect a slimmer soundstage. Bass could stand to be deeper, though midrange and highs were decent. Sometimes, however, treble came off too high and tinny, but it wasn't to a level that was overly distracting or problematic.
At $275, the Sound OG900 costs a pretty penny. True, Samsung enthusiasts will dig its S-Voice integration, but audiophiles may be underwhelmed with its design and sound quality. In addition, there are plenty of alternatives available, like the aforementioned Jabra Revo, and the affordable $130 Sony MDR-7506. Of course, we won't officially know what the headphones are made of until we get our hands on a review unit, but until then check out more of CNET's MWC 2014 coverage.