There are times when the quality of the music experience goes way beyond your expectation given the size of the hardware. I have had this experience multiple times in my life and it leaves you overwhelmed every time. The Sennheiser IE 80 S falls in this category of devices.
The Sennheiser IE 80 S is a neckband design wireless earphone which looks a bit different from other models in the space because it has ear hooks that are common with sports earphones. The controls are on the left side and along with power and volume buttons, there is also a dedicated smart assistant button. With the ear hooks and the heavy tips of the neckband, the earphones stay in place whatever you do. However, given the price, I am not sure this is ideal to be taken to a sweaty gym.
The Sennheiser IE 80 S is very comfortable to wear over a long time and gradually you forget you are wearing them. In fact, given this comfort and the fact that the device can easily connect calls, the Sennheiser IE 80 S is ideal for those who are looking for an earphone to wear whole day long mixing work and pleasure. You can take calls with a single tap, skips songs on the playlist all with just the controls on the left.
If there is one reason you would buy one of these, it has to be the audio quality. This is audio quality that will impress audiophiles, despite the fact that you are not wearing over the year headphones. The experience is similar to what you would get say when you are wearing a Sennheiser Momentum for instance.
The audio quality is rich and details with space between different notes. I loved how the Sennheiser IE 80 S gives you even the vague sounds at the background which you would otherwise have missed in the melee. This means even with a song like Hotel California which you have heard like a million times, there is an element of rediscovery possible. By the way, I heard Hotel California and Sultan of Swing a dozen times to review the Sennheiser IE 80 S. It was nostalgia overdose. This ear for details also makes the Sennheiser IE 80 S perfect for those who consume a lot of video on the move.
Listening to something on the other side of the spectrum, like Gregory Alen Isakov’s San Luis was such a soothing experience and a good way to test the acoustics of this device. Using the equaliser on the Sennheiser app, you can discover different layers and get the music customised to just how you like it.
The app also gives you some controls on the settings, like switching off auto answering for calls or enabling an auto-off after 15 minutes of inactivity. However, I found the app a bit buggy as it struggled to identify the device at times and even when connected kept saying ‘IE 80S BT not found’. Also, while the Sennheiser IE 80 S announces the battery level every time you put it on, this number was often different from what the app was showing. Because of this, I wasn’t unsure of the battery level, though these earphones are good for about six hours of playback.
However, at this price, Sennheiser should be offering more hours of playback, as well as noise cancelling. Though you don’t miss the latter much given the nice fit of the ear tips.
At Rs 39,990, the Sennheiser IE 80 S BT is an investment. But for those who love and value their music, this is an investment you will not regret. This is an investment you will value every time you play the Sennheiser IE 80 S BT. After all, a great music experience is priceless.