As if the true wireless earbuds market was not already crowded enough, one of its biggest players is reportedly gearing up to unveil yet another top-notch AirPods Pro alternative just three and 11 months after taking the wraps off the decidedly unconventional LinkBuds and convolutedly named but incredibly well-reviewed WF-1000XM4 respectively.
Despite what their own name might suggest, the impending Sony LinkBuds S are set to look… pretty “normal”, closing the distinctive hole of the non-S model while purportedly beating Apple’s aforementioned noise-cancelling buds, as well as other high-end rivals, in one (fairly) important department.
When big and small numbers perfectly come together
According to WinFuture’s Roland Quandt
, who is almost never wrong about these types of things, especially right before an announcement expected to take place as early as tomorrow, each LinkBud S will weigh in at 4.8 grams.
That would make these bad boys the “lightest and smallest” earbuds with state-of-the-art active noise cancellation and High-Resolution Audio technologies in tow, which is a marketing opportunity Sony
undoubtedly plans to seize and take full advantage of.
In case you’re wondering, the hugely popular AirPods Pro tip the scales at 5.4 grams per bud, with Samsung’s significantly lower-cost and similarly well-reviewed Galaxy Buds 2
standing at 5 grams and Sony’s WF-1000XM4 weighing a “whopping” 7.3 grams.
Of course, these aren’t exactly radical differences all users will immediately notice out in the real world, but when it comes to extended wireless music listening sessions, every extra gram can prove burdensome after a while.
Perhaps the most impressive thing about the LinkBuds S, however, is that the reduced weight shouldn’t negatively impact battery life, tipped to begin at six hours (possibly with ANC switched off) and go all the way up to 20 hours when adding the charging case factor into the equation.
Not quite industry-leading, those numbers certainly sound high enough to keep these puppies in contention for the title of best wireless earbuds money can buy, especially after considering some of the other decidedly premium features revealed today.
So much more to be excited about
With the same IPX4 water resistance rating as the WF-1000XM4 and AirPods Pro
, splashes and sweat shouldn’t be a problem for Sony LinkBuds S wearers, who can also expect to enjoy “powerful bass and clear voice reproduction” thanks to a 5mm driver, as well as flawless connectivity (at least in theory) with Bluetooth 5.2 support, not to mention Adaptive Sound Control functionality ensuring an “optimal listening experience” automatically adjusted to your surroundings.
All of that will naturally come at a cost, but while pricier than the Galaxy Buds 2 and non-noise-cancelling LinkBuds, the €199 LinkBuds S are likely to undercut the AirPods Pro, at least at their regular price. Stateside, of course, you can expect a recommended price point of around two Benjamins… provided a US release is in the pipeline, which we have no reason to doubt will indeed be the case.
By the way, conventional doesn’t equal boring (let alone ugly) here, with the “lightest and smallest” noise-cancelling earbuds around looking like they’ll be able to easily turn some heads at the gym, on the street, or even in the office.