I bet you’ve seen, and wondered about, Sony’s latest earphones, the Sony LinkBuds. Sony recently sent me a pair to review and I am so impressed.
Here’s a look at them.
Sony have taken a different approach to the design and given them a ring-shaped speaker with a hole in the middle, not dissimilar-looking to the Polo mints, we used to get on holiday in the UK. The shape has its purpose though, it allows you to listen to your music but also lets the world around you in, so you are aware of what is going on around you.
What I love about these Sony LinkBuds is the design. Not since the Samsung Buds and Beans have we seen anything that breaks tradition. Just above the Polo Mint sits a Mentos looking shape, which is the part of the Sony LinkBuds visible to the world. I’ll say it again, it’s all very cleverly designed and put together.
The Sony LinkBuds stay in your ear thanks to silicone wings that come five different sizes. That then tucks right into your ear. They only weigh 4.1g each so it really feels like nothing. I wear the Samsung Buds so I found these quite comfy and easy to move over to.
Once you’ve popped these in, you’re able to hear everything around you clearly. That’s all down to the hole in the centre of the speaker. You have complete awareness of your surroundings while still enjoying whatever you’re listening to.
Without pulling them out, you can easily carry on a full conversation and hear your own voice to avoid inadvertently yelling during calls. On the other end of calls, too, my voice comes across natural and crystal-clear.
While listening to music on the other hand, the tunes are clear, treble and mid-bass are balanced, and there is a full equaliser to customise the sound to your preference. Sometimes though, the Sony LinkBuds struggle to deliver those deeper notes crisply.
The earbuds include Fast Pair with Android and Swift Pair with Windows PC in addition to supporting Bluetooth 5.2 standard. They can switch between devices with ease but can only connect to one device at a time.
Battery and playback
The earbuds have a playback time of up to 5.5 hours and clip into a compact, portable case that can hold an extra 12 hours of charge for a total playing time of 17.5 hours. A 10-minute charge will provide up to 90 minutes of playback when the battery is low.
Commands and controls
The Sony LinkBuds provide customisable controls for playback, volume, and other features. The coolness factor of tapping the earbud or just near your ear twice or three times, is a fun feature.
When you remove an earbud, the audio stops, and when you replace it, the music resumes. I also loved the automated volume adjustment feature that changes the volume of the music based on how loud your surroundings are.
Price and colour
Let’s just say that these are not cheap and they shouldn’t be. The Sony LinkBuds are something special. Sony’s new LinkBuds are available in South Africa for R3999.00, which puts them in the same price bracket with Apple Airpods Pro.
The Sony LinkBuds do only come in white and black.
The casing and earbuds are constructed from recycled plastic, so Sony have thought about sustainability. We have to give them a point for that.
The Sony LinkBuds are an intriguing new concept in the world of Bluetooth earbuds. They have a unique design that guarantees complete awareness of the outside world while still enjoying whatever you’re listening to.
They sound decent, especially in quieter settings, making them ideal for an office or similar setting. Voice calls are also fantastic. According to some, the fit takes some getting used to but I didn’t have that problem at all.