As Sony’s aggressive line of car speakers and UFO-like mini-systems indicate, the company has never been shy or understated in the design of its audio equipment. Though its new MDR-EX500LP earbuds don’t promise to blow out your ears with a name like Xplod, the pair that tops Sony’s new EX line certainly haven’t gone quietly on style.
Upon first inspection, the first thing that stands out about the EX500 are their disc-like drivers. Unlike a traditional earbud that has the flat portion of drive pointing directly into the ear, the EX500 orients it vertically with a soft silicon earbud appended, perpendicular, to the side. And it’s all packaged up in rigid aluminum to minimize vibration – not your typical white plastic.
Sony MDR-EX500LP Earbuds
That unusual design allows room for a beefy 13.5mm driver, which is significantly larger than the 9mm or 10mm drivers found in more mainstream units. Combined with a multi-layer diaphragm, Sony says that difference should translate to deeper bass without reducing clarity on the top end.