Sony just announced its latest flagship set of high-end, noise-canceling wireless headphones at IFA 2016, and the MDR-1000X is as powerful as it is expensive.
The headphones make use of a pair of sound deadening ear pads and noise sensors to cancel out sound pollution. A nifty feature of the MDR-1000X is that it allows the noise-canceling optimizer to adjust the sound to your specific head. This means that the designers at Sony took into account variables such as glasses, long hair or clients' oddly shaped heads.
When the MDR-1000X is linked to a source of high-resolution audio the headphones will deliver exactly that. However, if you use them in Bluetooth mode, the headphones will tap into their LDAC technology to facilitate high-resolution audio. What is more, even users who listen to compressed music formats will feel a surge in their listening experience, as the Digital Sound Enhancement Engine that Sony embedded into the MDR-1000X kicks in.
Keep in mind that this full array of technology does not come cheap, especially compared to products such as Bose's QuietComfort 35 that costs $350.
The MDR-1000X asks Sony audio fans to shell out $400.
However, the headphones sport a new way of interacting with the world, without having to remove them. With the "Quick Attention" mode, wearers of the headphones can simply pause the noise-canceling function (and the audio track, implicitly) by putting their hand over the right ear cup. With the simple gesture, it is easy to place an order or listen to a public service announcement while you still have the MDR-1000X on.
If Quick Attention is too radical, know that a middle-ground mode exists, as well. Meet "Ambient Sound Mode," which allows wearers to hear ambient conversation and listen to music at the same time.
The touchpad on the right ear allows wearers to engage the simple but efficient actions of any music player: a simple tap plays or pauses tracks, an up or down swipe adjusts the volume, while left and right swipes skip or repeat tracks.
Sources report that MDR-1000X is outstanding at silencing all chatter in the room, even when there is no music playing in them.
Andrew Tarantola from Engadget talks about his experience with the MDR-1000X while he was standing seven stories over street level.
"[The headphones] even quieted the traffic noise from San Francisco's financial district" he says.
It is not easy to justify paying $400 for a set of headphones, even for one that is high-tech and branded by a famous company such as Sony. However, those who do a lot of traveling, are unlucky enough to have noisy neighbors, or simply want the best audio quality on the go should consider getting the MDR-1000X.
Availability for the headphones starts in October, but those who want to catch a front seat, preorders are now open on Sony's website. Customers will be able to select between two color options: gray-beige and black. The full package comes with a carrying case, an airplane adapter as well as a myriad of cables.