Review: Sony WF-C500 Entry-Level True Wireless Earbuds

tech4xmas: If you’re looking for an affordable pair of earbuds with good sound quality that’s synonymous with Sony, the no-frills WF-C500 true wireless earbuds will make a good Christmas gift.

The Sony WF-C500 earbuds offers good audio quality at an affordable price.

The Sony WF-C500 earbuds offers good audio quality at an affordable price.

The WF-C500 offers good value-for-money in terms of sound quality but at the expense of features that are found in other earbuds of similar price range or higher.

At an affordable S$139, the WF-C500 has had to forego frills like noise cancellation, transparency mode, wireless charging and automatic pausing when you remove one or both earbuds.

The earbuds are IPX4 rated so they’re splash resistant.


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Freshly unboxed Sony WF-C500 True Wireless Earbuds.

Battery life is reasonable at 10 hours with full charge, plus an additional 10 hours from the pill-shaped charging case.

This is plenty long for me although it’s common for charging cases to provide twice the full charge of their earbuds.

I like that a quick charge of 10 minutes gave me a full hour of mileage.

The charging case has a semi-transparent case so I could see the three amber LEDs within lit up when charging – one for the case and one for each bud.

On the outside is a USB-C port – a USB-C to USB-A cable is included.

My Take

The WF-C500 is an affordable, no-frills pair of True Wireless Earbuds from Sony with good audio.

This pair of entry-level earbuds would make a good Christmas gift.

The WF-C500 comes with three sizes of silicone tips so it’s not difficult to find a snug fit.

At 5.4g per earbud, they are light and comfortable for long wear.

I found the earbuds good for a light jog without any of the buds popping out.

For on-ear controls, there is a large press button on each bud, with the left bud-button controlling volume and the right bud-button controlling playback.

A short press on the left bud-button raises volume while a longer press decreases it.

A single tap on the right bud-button to begin/pause playback, two-taps to forward a track, and triple-track to go backwards. A long press activates the voice assistant (Siri or Google Assistant).

For call management, press on either bud to answer/end calls, and long press either bud to reject a call.

Long pressing both buds enters pairing mode with its Bluetooth 5.0.

The WF-C500 is compatible with SBC and AAC codecs but not AptX.

It is driven by a pair of 5.8mm neodymium full-range dynamic drivers that deliver a frequency range of 20Hz to 20kHz.

The WF-C500 works with Sony’s “Headphones Connect” app which provides control of EQ and the ability to switch on/off the DSEE (Digital Sound Enhancement Engine) feature which is meant to upscale regular audio files to “hi-res” quality.

You can hear the difference yourself by switching on/off the DSEE – I find that it does improve the quality of those mp3 files that you rip off YouTube for instance.

The app also enables you to use Sony’s 360 Reality Audio spatial audio algorithm.

Sound quality wise, the WF-C500 delivers well-balanced sound right out of the box, with lots of detail in texture and timbre, as well as in the midrange.

You might want to increase the bass to taste using the app settings.

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2 Responses to “Review: Sony WF-C500 Entry-Level True Wireless Earbuds”

  1. Louise Kee says:

    Are the earbuds waterproof?

    • tech4tea says:

      They’re only splash-proof – perhaps some accidental droplets etc. Only rated to IPX4, so you can’t swim with them or get in a shower with these on.

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