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Sony vs Sennheiser – Detailed Comparison

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Sony and Sennheiser are two renowned and well respected brands in the audio industry that produces high quality speakers, headphones, soundbars,  subwoofers and amplifiers. 

In this article, we will cover a general overview of both brands, looking specifically at sound quality, durability, price and so on. Of course, each brand has different devices at different price points, however, we will compare them as closely as we can. 

Quick History

Sony Quick History

Sony Corporation is a Japanese manufacturer of consumer electronics products incorporated in 1946 by Ibuka Masaru and Morita Akio as Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering Corporation.

Before this, Ibuka had used his Japanese Precision Instruments Company to supply electronic devices during World War II. He met Morita while they worked for the Imperial Japanese Army as engineers designing heat-seeking missiles during World War II.

In 1952, Ibuka made efforts to license the transistor from Bell Laboratories in the US before Morita signed a deal with Western Electric there the following year. The agreement led to the production of the Totsuko’s transistor radios, the Sony’s TR-63, in 1955. In 1958, Sony became the official company name.

The name was derived from the Latin word Sonus which stands for “sound.” Its pocket radios were the company’s most significant success and led to its international brand recognition.

In 1960, Sony Corporation of America was created with headquarters in New York City. Sony then introduced the MD-5, the first all-transistor desktop calculator, in 1964 during the New York World’s Fair, followed by the historic shipping of its first Trinitron color television in 1968.

Sony currently focuses on research and development (R&D), planning, designing, manufacturing, and marketing of electronic products for the consumer and professional markets.

Sennheiser Quick History

Sennheiser was founded in 1945 in a laboratory called Laboratorium Wennebostel (Lab W) by Fritz Sennheiser and seven other engineers of the University of Hannover. Lab W started producing microphones in 1946 with DM1 and in 1947 with DM2.

The company produced many different products, including the Noise-Compensated microphone (DM4) and miniature magnetic headphones, before it was transformed into a limited partnership (KG) in 1973.

In 1982, Sennheiser started producing modern wireless microphones and won the 59th Academy Awards for its MKH 816 shotgun microphone.

Sennheiser is headquartered near Hannover, in the municipality of Wedemard, Germany. Today, Sennheiser is well known for producing professional-grade headphones and microphones.

Sound Quality

Sony Sound Quality

Sony products generally sound good. Compared to other competitors, Sony is a premium brand that takes a lot of time to research and develop its sound systems, making it one of the best-sounding audio products.

The soundbars are feature loaded, have great surround sound performance, and most of them support Dolby Atmos content. Sony is at the forefront of technology innovation, its sound-loving engineers work tirelessly to maintain the standard of its high-quality Hi-Fi speakers.

Sennheisser Sound Quality

Sennheiser produces robust headphones with versatile performance built with an ANC system (active noise-canceling technology).

ANC blocks out the low rumble of plane engines and vehicles together with ambient chatter. With aptX and aptX-LL codecs, these headphones deliver incredible sound quality with lower latency.

The bass is heavy and decently adds extra thump, rumble, and boom to mixes. This makes Sennheiser headphones more suited for genres like EDM and hip-hop.

In addition, the infrared transmission technology and the multi-channel RF wireless transmission technology contribute to the popular Sennheiser sound signature.

Features

Sony Features

Sony is known to manufacture high-quality products. Some of the key features of Sony speakers include:

  • Bluetooth speakers with prolonged battery life
  • Compact designs that make them easily fit in every home or office space
  • High-quality sound

Key features of Sony TVs include:

  • Good picture quality
  • New frame tweeter technology with sound-from-picture reality
  • Two-position stand
  • New Ambient Optimization
  • Hands-free capabilities such as remote control systems for easy management of TV programs
  • Easy connectivity
  • Compatibility with 4K 120fps

Sennheiser Features

The following features are characteristic of all Sennheiser headphones:

  • Modular construction that makes it easy to repair or replace parts
  • Snug fit
  • Excellent cup padding
  • Air Traffic Control
  • Professionally inspired
  • Total harmonic distortion <0.08% (1kHz, 94 dB)
  • Resonator chamber to remove masking resonance
  • Para-aramid reinforced cables
  • German-made 7mmXWB transducer – for naturally balanced sound
  • Intuitive controls
  • Lightweight (around 140 grams)
  • Supra-aural design

Build Quality

Sony Build Quality

Sony was initially known for good-quality products. In fact, Sony originally maintained a high market price to compensate for the high build quality despite many customers saying they charged so high.

Most people say that Sony manufactures premium audio products with fantastic sound quality and build.

No company can handle a wide array of products like Sony while maintaining high quality. Sony leads in manufacturing cameras, audio, and mobile phones, among many other products. Besides, they offer a fantastic after-sales service.

sony srsxb2

However, some people note that the build quality they get from Sony is generally bad. This is mainly from customers who buy the Sony cameras who say they have had a problem or two with their Sony cameras, and even after Sony fixed them, the situation became worse.

Therefore, whether Sony products are of good build or not remains an opinion whose outcome mainly depends on the type of product and the experience of individual users.

Sennheiser Build Quality

The headphones are built with a rugged and flexible design. The durable metal hinge and sliders add appealing style.

Sennheiser black headphone

Even for long periods of use, they often remain in good condition. The latest ones are made from ZR01 amorphous zirconium, a metal used to drill the face of Mars, ensuring toughness and longevity.

Ease of Use

Sony Ease Of Use

Some Sony products are not easy to use. For instance, getting Sony KDL-32EX650 to work is not very easy. Besides, setting up a wireless network takes a long time.

Also, setting up the Bravia KDL-40WD650 (Bravia is a Sony brand) is more complicated despite Sony 43XG7005 being the most intuitive and easy-to-use Sony TV with a quick and responsive menu.

The speakers are however easy to use with the Bluetooth ones easily connecting to your devices to provide on-the-go entertainment.

Sennheiser Ease of Use

Sennheiser headphones come with various connectivity options making them very easy to connect and use for multiple occasions.

The customizable touch controls put you in control of your listening experience, from audio and phone calls to Siri and Google Assistant.

Cost

Sony Cost

The cost of some Sony products are listed below: 

Speakers: $40 – $4000

Receivers: $20 – $1000

Amplifier: $30 – $500

Sennheiser Cost

Headphones: $20 – $500

Microphones: $50 – $1000

Space Requirements

Sony Space Requirements

Every person wants to maximize their small spaces. This is why every audio manufacturer puts more effort into researching to use versatile drivers that can deliver high efficiency while reducing the volume of materials used.

Sony products are generally constructed with a compact design and build. They take smaller spaces than other products and will perfectly fit into your small spaces whether you buy a smart TV or home theater system.

Sennheiser Space Requirements

Sennheiser headphones are perfectly built for the ear. Whether you are buying over-ear, on-ear, or in-ear headphones, their construction is compact and easily fits the head and ear without exerting extra pressure.

Besides, the headphones are lightweight, and wearers may not feel the weight even after longtime use.

Remote Controls

Sony Remote Controls

Some people report that remotes for Sony KD-55XD8005 TVs, KD49X8309C, KD49XD8077 and KD-55X8508C, among other brands, have occasional problems. The issues are mainly that the remote controls become unresponsive occasionally and have to be troubleshot to continue working.

Sony remote controls are, however, generally excellent and responsive. However, where the remotes show problems, Sony offers quick customer support to ensure you continue using your remote control perfectly to enjoy your TV programs.

Sennheiser Remote Control

Although Sennheiser headphones do not come with remote controls, they support wireless streaming such as Bluetooth listening.

Also, you can control some of your Sennheiser headphones with the Sennheiser Smart Control app. The app helps you access firmware updates and allows you to choose adaptive ANC and anti-wind ANC for the first noise-canceling level.

Connectivity Options

Sony Connectivity Options

When it comes to connectivity options, Sony is one of the most evolving brands in the market today. For instance, Sony Bravia (Bravia is a Sony brand) comes with a wide range of connectivity options, from USB to wireless connectivity channels.

Some of the connectivity options supported by different Sony products include:

    • RCA for older products
    • USB ports
    • HDMI ports for digital connectivity
  • Bluetooth
  • Composite video inputs
  • Wi-Fi for wireless connectivity

Sennheiser Connectivity Options

Here are the connectivity options for Sennheiser:

    • Bluetooth multipoint
    • Fast auto-connect
    • SBC
    • aptX
    • aptX LL
    • AAC
    • Wired listening with a 2.5 mm cable

Power Range

Sony Power Range

Like many audio products in the market, Sony products work perfectly well with the conventional power range of 110 V – 240 V.

They have a shallow standby power consumption, and the TVs are built with a power-saving mode backlight on and off control to help minimize power consumption.

Sennheiser Power Range

Sennheiser headphones consume very little power to deliver incredible sound quality. Besides, the potable ones utilize either rechargeable or non-rechargeable AAA batteries and will deliver up to 100.45 dB/mW SPL.

Frequency Response

Sony Frequency Response

Most Sony audio products deliver within the frequency range of 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz. This frequency range effectively supports a good delivery of audio outputs for both the Sony speakers, subwoofers, and even the Sony TVs.

Sennheiser Frequency Response

Sennheiser headphones perform well and widely exceed limits with ranges of 4 Hz to 51 kHz. The wide range helps prevent bass or treble roll-offs. Users also feel more frequencies and get a more immersive listening experience.

Conclusion

Sony is good for playing jazz sound. The brand is versatile with numerous connectivity options and good build quality. Besides, there are products for all price ranges.  Sennheiser produces high-quality headphones and microphones. The devices support numerous features and are energy efficient. They are, however, more expensive than the competition.

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