Sony’s MDR-XB450AP is part of the company’s line of headphones focused on delivering the best possible bass response. Normal headphones typically have an acceptable level of bass, but is the extra bass worth it? Let’s find out.
- Weight: 165 grams
- Closed Type: Yes
- Dynamic Type: Yes
- Driver Unit: 30 mm dynamic – Dome type
- Frequency response (Hz): 5 – 22,000 Hz
- Sensitivities (dB/mW): 102 dB/mW
- Impedance (Ohm): 24 Ω at 1 kHz
- Cord type: Y-type
- Cord length: 1.2 meters
- Plug: L-shaped gold-plated four-conductor mini
- Microphone: Omni directional
- Beat response control: Headband, On-ear
Design and Specifications:
The Sony MDR-XB450AP offers soft cushioned ear cups that gives good coverage on both ears. Additionally, the closed back design of the headband ensures that the sound is sealed off within your listening range. It’s doesn’t cancel out noise like other more expensive options like the ones from Bose, but it is accurate enough to block any outside noise.
The Sony MDR-XB450AP features Neodymium dynamic drivers embedded on each of the ear pads. This allows the headphone to deliver the best possible sound output. Along with that, it also allows you to turn on the headphones to a higher volume without any distortions.
This pair of headphones come with an enhanced sensitivity of 102dB/mW along with a 5Hz to 22kHz frequency range. It simply means that the Sony MDR-XB450AP is capable of handling various frequencies that normal headphones cannot do.
As mentioned, the Sony MDR-XB450AP specializes in delivering extra bass when listening to your tunes. Sony utilizes a technology called Beat Response Control that lets it deliver a tighter and deeper bass response.
The Sony MDR-XB450AP uses a 3.5 mm audio jack that makes it easily compatible for all media devices. It even includes an in-line remote and microphone so you can make calls while using the headphones. This model uses an in-line remote compatible with all devices – this includes iOS device (iPhone and iPad), along with compatibility for Android and BlackBerry devices.
If you have an Android smartphone, you have the option to install the Smart Key app that lets you tweak the in-line remote settings of the Sony MDR-XB450AP. This includes adjusting buttons that would let you skip or rewind music playback.
For testing I hooked up the headphones on a variety of device including an iPhone 6, Nexus 5, iPad Air 2, PlayStation Vita and my MacBook Pro. I’ve used tunes that relied solely on heavy low frequency effects to see how effective the bass is.
A short sampling of 50 Cent’s ‘In Da Club’ delivered a good bass response. The only problem is that the bass can become too much – which at times can make the entire tune sound muddy. It would have been great if the headphones manage to deliver the bass while evening out the other aspects of the sound output, but overall it seems that they’ve just turned up the bass control all the way up.
Not to say that the headphones are bad. On normal usage, the Sony MDR-XB450AP delivered capable stereo sound and decent separation on both channels. It somehow fared better when I used it to watch a movie on my mobile device, since the extra bass delivered a more powerful listening experience.
Pros & Cons:
- Comfortable ear pads
- Sturdy headband
- Includes in-line remote compatible with all mobile devices
- Foldable and easy to store
- Bass can be overwhelming at times
- Headphone customization can only be done through an Android app
The Sony MDR-XB450AP certainly delivers on the extra bass promise – though it can be a little too much at times. Extra bass doesn’t necessarily always offer a great listening experience but for its price, features and overall sound output, you can’t go wrong with the Sony MDR-XB450AP.