The Bowers & Wilkins offers a portable closed-back wireless headphone with active noise canceling. With its architecture, fascinating sound, and broadest support for Bluetooth codecs, the PX headphones stand out as a revered contender.
The PX is the first wireless headphones with active noise reduction of the UK audio manufacturer Bowers & Wilkins. I’m not a firm believer in good-sounding Bluetooth headphones, though this pair of wireless over-ears impressed me. Besides the Bowers & Wilkins PX headphones inside the beautifully upholstered package, is included: the USB-C charging cable, audio cable, soft case, and user manual. The scope of delivery is decent, including all the necessary accessories.
Bowers & Wilkins PX Review
Type: Closed-back Over-ear Noise Canceling Headphones | Bluetooth: 4.1 | Bluetooth Profiles: A2DP v1.3, AVRCP v1.6, HFP v1.6, HSP v1.2, GAP, SDAP, DIP | Bluetooth Codecs: aptX HD, SBC, AAC | Latency: 200 ms (average) |Battery: 50 Hours (Wires & No ANC), 22 Hours (Bluetooth & ANC) | Charging Time: 1.5 Hours | Drivers: Dynamic | Drivers Size: 40 mm | Weight: 336g | Microphones: 4 NC + 2 Voice Capture | Frequency Response: 10 – 20000 Hz | Impedance: 22 Ohms
Besides, the Bowers & Wilkins PX headphones placed inside a package with beautiful upholstery, is included: the USB-C charging cable, audio cable, soft case, and user manual. The scope of delivery is decent, including all the necessary accessories.
B&W’s preference for leather pads was decided by their efficiency of passively reducing the outside noises. In tandem with a secure grip onto ears, the headphones provide a tight seal, such that listening to music is more convenient and soothing, without interruptions.
The price to that, however, is a short time of comfortable continuous listening. After around 2 hours of wearing, the weight and pressure of the headband become noticeable. It is at that one you should take a break from playing music.
The Bowers & Wilkins PX can realistically be a very comfortable pair of over-ear headphones. In terms of comfort, it is when you listen to music endlessly where it falls short.
The audio management is intuitive and comes as mechanical push-controls that allow: activate noise canceling, switch songs, call the voice assistant, adjust volume, manage phone calls, Bluetooth pairing and powering on/off the headphones
PX’s management is intuitive and functional to the point that, when you take off the headphones, the music stops. It preserves battery and is convenient for users, particularly if you forget about your headphones.
No matter the circumstance, the sensors can be adjusted inside the app. Proper ergonomics allow the headphones to swivel 90 degrees and hang around your neck. They’re comfortable, however, lack a folding mechanism, so they aren’t as practical for traveling hence the soft carrying case and inability to fold.
SBC, AAC, aptX, aptX HD are all supported by Bowers & Wilkins PX. The pairing is straightforward and done via Bluetooth 4.2. The connection created is reliable and suffers no interferences during the whole session.
The headset includes a multipoint interface that allows various connections to be had simultaneously. You can then extend the practicability of these wireless headphones over multiple devices. Listen to music on your smartphone while having an online conversation.
Bowers and Wilkins have an exclusive application in the stores for Android and iOS, with which the headphones’ main functions are controlled. If the button on the bowl only turns on and off the active noise reduction mode, then in the application, you can choose which option will be turned on: “flight,” “office,” or “city” (more about them below).
B&W has planned for heavy-duty with 30 hours autonomy with ANC and 22 hours with Bluetooth & Noise-canceling enabled. And it requires only 4 hours to charge. Counterintuitively, when you play music via wire, the ANC remains enabled, draining out the battery, and eventually turns off the headphones. With cables, the runtime is around 45-50 hours. Fortunately, unlike Bose 700, you can listen to music while charging via the USB Type-C cable.
On the other hand, Bowers and Wilkins PX’s ANC isn’t nearly as strong as that of Bose 700. It is powerful, but nothing out of realms. Of the three noise-canceling settings, only the Flight Mode cancels background noises effectively.
B&W PX doesn’t require a lot of power in order to reveal its full potential. Even paired via Bluetooth and without aptX, the sound remains clear and high-quality.
The greatest part was being able to enjoy high-quality music on almost every device. In Bluetooth, the listening experience is fantastic. Via wires, on the other hand, the difference is minor: music is more detailed, and the bass response is better controlled.
Besides good instrumental separation, the basses of B&W PX are beautifully emphasized, rendering an overall harmonious auditory image. The bass is obviously one of PX’s main features, sounding remarkable, accurate, and precise. Instruments in this range also sound natural and stimulating.
We’re welcomed by pleasant linearity in the mid-range with lifelike vocals and good separation of the instruments.
In the higher-end of the sonic spectrum, the frequencies are as pronounced as the very intriguing basses. The trebles feel a bit recessed and lacking in presence, though the sounds create a good representation of the instruments in this region.
The powerful, lively, and very thorough sound of Bowers & Wilkins PX fits all sorts of digital music, including more complex electronic tunes. While PX is fantastic in the digital sector, it is not the most fitting Bluetooth headphone for classical genres.
All in all, Bowers & Wilkins PX reassured us that intriguing, high-quality, sound reproduction is still a thing even in the wireless sector. With around 22 hours of playback (Bluetooth on, and NC engaged), the mindfully-manufactured high-end NC headphone is on a mission to provide best-in-class sound quality in a wireless setup.