Sony Ericsson LiveSound Headphones Review

Sony Ericsson has just released the first pair of headphones that have been specifically designed for Sony Ericsson’s range of Android Smartphones.  The LiveSound headphones stick the tried and tested in-ear technology. Now we’ll concede that in-ear technology does have place in today’s market. We love over-ear headphones, personally – they produce studio quality sound and are the closest thing you’ll get to Hi-Fi music on the go, but, over-ear headphone just aren’t that practical, if you’re on the move and don’t want to be weighed down by big and clunky headphones you’re only other choice is in-ear.

With the LiveSound Sony Ericsson have tried to make them incredibly comfortable, if you’ve ever used a pair of Apple headphones then you’ll know that they can be really uncomfortable, mainly because everyone’s ears are slightly different, and this is were the LiveSound have tried to improve upon. Their headphones come with a tube of moulds that has a range of sizes, so you’ll be able to find a rubber mould that suits you. The mould is designed to be place in your ear canal so the headphones don’t fall out when you’re walking or even running, and you get a nice snug fit, meaning they’ll be louder and you won’t disturb other people around you when you’re listening to music loud on a train or bus.

Other notable design features for the LiveSound headphones is the use of flat wires, rather than circular ones, this really helps with headphone tangling, which as you’ll probably know is the most annoying things about headphones. When you put them in your pocket or bag most in-ear headphone get frustratingly tangled requiring you to untangle them before you can listen you’re music. LiveSounds new flat wires system pretty much makes this annoyance a thing of the past. As well as a comfortable fitting and clever flat wires, the LiveSound headphones also come with LiveKey, a button that can be programmed to work with you phone so can answer the phone using the handy remote and you can even control certain Android Apps that are LiveKey compatible.

We found the sound quality of the headphones to quite good, with decent clarity and respectable low-ends – they can’t compete with Beats By Dre, but for the fraction of the price they are more than good enough, the sound quality of voice calls was especially impressive, and we’d even go as far stating they produce better voice call than using the traditional method of holding the phone to your head. The headphones will only work with Xperia phones, but, interestingly not on any other devices. We tried them on a laptop and they were incredibly quiet with some form of interference. You can press a button on the remote to get the full sound, but requires it to be held down which is hardly ideal, they also didn’t work on our iPhone, resulting in the same tinny sound, which we couldn’t remedy. For us, this is just a crazy design choice, if you buy a pair of headphones you don’t want them to only work with one type of phone or device.

The build quality is good and we really liked the idea of flat wires and metallic finish to the ear buds. Overall LiveSound are a good pair of headphones, but the decision not let them work with other devices is unforgivable, whether we’re missing something were not sure, but they do seem to work once you hold down one of the buttons on the remote, so were not sure whether they’re faulty or this was a decision to make them work only on Xperia Phones. We did have two pairs to test and them same issue happened on both. If you have an Xperia phone, then they’re a good purhcase, but as a pair of headphone to work with a myriad of devices they fail miserably.

We’ll contact the manufacturer to whether this is a design features or a mistake.

Gaj-it Rating 3/5


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4 Responses to “Sony Ericsson LiveSound Headphones Review”

  1. Graham says:

    The reason they do not work with the iPhone is that they are wired differently.

    If you number the pins 1 to 4 from the tip, 1 & 2 are the headphones, then 3 is the earth for the iPhone and 4 for the signal/ mic, whereas on these 4 is the earth, and 3 the signal/mic.

    The connection for the signal/mic differs between the two as well, so even swapping pins 3 & 4 the buttons would not work across the two.

  2. Andrew says:

    Thanks for the info Graham, I did try them on a laptop and they didn’t work properly either, the most annoying thing was that if you press one of the buttons down on the remote the actually work properly with full sound. But the button must be held down, which just isn’t practical. It’s just seems like a mad decision, and you already get a pair of headphones with the Xperia Arc.

  3. Andrew says:

    Also when I said they don’t work on a iPhone, I meant for playing music, I obviously didn’t expect them to work for calls. But still seems like a barmy decision.

  4. Andy says:

    Thanks Graham. Will give it a go.


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