review

Edifier W860NB Review ANC Headphones With Gesture Controls

Friday, May 29, 2020

The Edifier W860NB are a good compromise between high priced and budget headphones, featuring 40mm neodymium drivers (same ones in the P841 headphones), active noise cancellation, NFC connectivity, touch controls and Bluetooth 4.1 aptX.
There is also a massive rechargeable battery with 1,400mAh capacity that can power the Edifier W860NB for up to 45 hours (at 50% volume) and 24 hours with active noise cancellation turned on.
You can potentially use the Edifier W860NB for 2 days straight without having to go for a charging pit-stop. So long lasting is the battery that if you only use them for an hour a day, you won't have to recharge them for a whole month.
If you do forget recharging them though, there is wired connectivity support too, which on this headset, can be used with a dead battery since the Edifier W860NB headset has a passive audio port. This is worth knowing since this isn't the case with a lot of bluetooth headphones. There is no pass through audio while charging either, which means you won't be able to listen to audio wirelessly while charging.
Just like the entire W860NB headphone, the headband and yoke are constructed of hard plastic with chrome metallic finish.
The headband has a wide, thickly padded middle section that helps bear the weight (284 grams) of the Edifier W860NB headphone and alleviate heat spot on top of the head.
Another super useful feature the Edifier W860NB has that not all bluetooth headphones have is the ability to be able to use the active noise cancellation without having to power the headset. Speaking of noise cancellation, the Edifier W860NB integrates hybrid active noise cancellation (ANC), which combines feed-forward ANC and feedback ANC.
The W860NB headset has two ANC microphones per earcup, one inside the earcup and one outside the earcup. The active noise cancellation in the Edifier W860NB headset is able to effectively drown out a broader range of constant frequencies like the low humming noise of a fan.
Variable noise like people chatter and screaming children doesn't get drown out as much. Speaking of microphones, the Edifier W860NB headset has only one voice microphone, although it's good, providing good quality for calls.
When you eventually do have to charge the Edifier W860NB, it only takes 4 hours to fully charge them via 5V/1A. There is a dedicated battery led on the right earcup next to the power button. The led will flash red when battery is low and will stay lit during charging. After charging is complete the red led turns off.
In terms of mechanical buttons, there are only two. The ANC switch and power button that also activates bluetooth, which supports multipoint pairing for up to two devices so, you can connect the Edifier W860NB with two separate devices at the same time.
The Edifier W860NB integrates a touch sensitive gesture control panel on the front of the right earcup that allows you to play/pause (by tapping) and skipping of tracks by sliding a finger back to front, as well as control volume by sliding a finger up and down. When maximum volume is reached, you are alerted via an audible beep sound.
When it comes to calls, you can answer, reject and end calls two ways. By tapping on the touch panel or using the power button, which also controls the voice assistant. If you've never tried headphones with gesture controls, you might become a convert after using the Edifier W860NB because swiping feels surprisingly more intuitive than tapping or pressing a button.
ANC in headphones is a useful feature, although it can affect the quality of the sound because the bass does increase when ANC is turned on. The ANC microphones in the Edifier W860NB have good tuning though, making the bass deeper without overpowering the midrange and treble, which are clear, thanks to the balancing of the sound amplification.
The headband padding is covered with the same soft pleather material as the earpads and features the word "Edifier" embossed on top of the headband.
The headband inner frame adjusting mechanism is made of hard plastic and reinforced with a brushed aluminium metal band that provides a very secure clamping force on the head. There are no notches on the headband so, it slides smoothly and silently up and down.
The Edifier W860NB over-ear earpads have 2cm thick squishy foam padding covered with soft pleather material. Provided that your ears don't stick out and are able to fit inside the earpads (which measure 6cm tall and 3.5cm wide), you can very easily wear the Edifier W860NB for long stretches.
That said, the W860NB earpads do generate more heat/sweat than the Edifier W855BT headphones, which have breathable, more spacious earpads.
The W860NB earcups can be rotated, one-way, clockwise up to 90 degrees and tilted up and down. The W860NB earpads have a 1.5cm depth (which is fairly shallow) with only a thin fabric layer separating the driver from the ear. The outer diameter of the earpads is 9.5cm tall by 7.5cm wide. The earpads can be detached from the earcups by pressing down and rotating the earpad clockwise.
The micro USB port is covered with a thin rubber flap. Next to the charging port, there is a charging status led and the 3.5mm audio port, which is passive
Accessories included are a 230-gram hard-shell carry case made with pleather material, waterproof seams and dual zippers with Edifier-branded pleather pull tabs.
The hard-shell carry case has a lanyard loop on the back that allows you to carry the case on the wrist.
The hard-shell case has a preformed foam cutout that allows the Edifier W860NB headphones to be stored securely without shifting around during transportation. There is a large mesh pocket built-in which has a velcro strip to fasten the mesh pocket so, the cables won't fall out.
An Edifier-branded rubberized audio cable (1-meter long) is included, which has hard plastic plugs with 3.5mm gold-plated metal connectors. One of the connector plugs is angled 90 degrees, while the other has a straight plug connector.
A generic, non-branded micro USB charging cable (42cm long) is also included, along with an airplane adapter that has gold-plated contacts. You can buy the Edifier W860NB from Amazon.
Gadget Explained disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases

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