Sennheiser CX 6.00BT Wire­less In-ear Head­phones

SoundMag - - Review / Sennheiser - BRIAN KAHN

The wire­less in ear head­phone mar­ket is boom­ing es­pe­cially as smart­phone are mov­ing to elim­i­nate jacks in de­vices how­ever therer is a lot of bot­tom end cheap de­vices and then there is the Sennheiser’s CX 6.00BT who open up a whole new lis­ten­ing world.

It does not mat­ter whether you are on a long call on your mo­bile or a short flight In­ter­state a wire­less in-ear head­phone is heaps more com­fort­able than a wired or larger head­phones.

The Sennheiser’s CX 6.00BT are a well en­gi­neered in ear head­phone which at $143 at JB Hi Fi or The Good Guys de­liv­ers a pre­mium sound at a rea­son­able price.

Th­ese are rel­a­tively in­ex­pen­sive head­phones and the least ex­pen­sive Sennheiser wire­less in-ear mon­i­tor.

De­spite their com­pet­i­tive price point, the CX 6.00BT does not skimp on fea­tures or tech­nol­ogy.

For con­nec­tiv­ity, they are one of the first head­phones to fea­ture Qual­comm’s aptX

Low La­tency codec, which will be par­tic­u­larly ben­e­fi­cial with keep­ing au­dio in sync with video dis­plays.

The CX 6.00BT is fairly tra­di­tional in de­sign: black plas­tic with sil­ver and dark blue high­lights. The stems for the ear tips are an­gled back slightly, which makes it easy to de­ter­mine which side is which. Sennheiser ships the CX 6.00BT with round rub­ber tips in four dif­fer­ent sizes. If you pre­fer foam style tips, Com­ply makes a tip for this model. The CX 6.00BT, tips, and short charg­ing cable all come pack­aged in a square, hard plas­tic case.

The ear­pieces are con­nected to each other with a wire that has small in-line mod­ules a cou­ple of inches from each ear­piece. The right-hand mod­ule fea­tures con­trol but­tons (up, down, and func­tion), mi­cro­phone, and a mi­cro-USB charg­ing port hid­den be­hind a rub­ber flap. A slider on the wire pro­vides length ad­just­ment.

The CX 6.00BT’s Blue­tooth 4.2 con­nec­tiv­ity pro­vides sup­port for AAC, aptX, and, as noted above, aptX Low La­tency. I know some will lament the lack of Blue­tooth 5.0, but I did not have any con­nec­tiv­ity prob­lems. I eas­ily con­nected to my iPhone 7, Mi­crosoft Sur­face Pro, and a few other de­vices, and the CX 6.00BT stayed con­nected. The voice feed­back of the head­phones also makes it sim­ple to track sta­tus rather than hav­ing to re­call the mean­ing of the var­i­ous tones used by many other Blue­tooth de­vices. Did the four as­cend­ing tones mean that I just con­nected or does it mean I maxed out the vol­ume? No pos­si­bil­ity of that con­fu­sion with the Sennheis­ers.

Lis­ten­ing Im­pres­sions

I lis­tened to Ariana Grande’s “God is a Wo­man” from the al­bum Sweet­ener (Repub­lic Records, Tidal) both through Sennheiser’s CapTune App and di­rectly through the Tidal app. There is no doubt that nav­i­gat­ing the Tidal app is faster and more in­tu­itive, but the CapTune app has a built in EQ func­tion, which I found help­ful in tam­ing the CX 6.00BT’s highs.

With­out the EQ en­gaged there was some harsh­ness in the syn­the­sized highs. The EQ al­lowed me to turn down the highs a touch, which let me pre­serve de­tail but greatly re­duce harsh­ness. Grande’s vo­cals were clear and nat­u­ral, but lacked the weight or heft that you hear when lis­ten­ing to full sized head­phones. Lastly, the bass was slightly rolled off with the pro­vided ear tips, which I found to be most com­fort­able.

Sub­sti­tut­ing Com­ply tips or the slightly less com­fort­able larger tips that came with the Sennheis­ers def­i­nitely im­proved bass in my ears. Re­mem­ber, ear fit is a per­sonal mat­ter and varies per user, so it’s good to test out a num­ber of good ear tips to get the best fit for you.

The open­ing vo­cals of Imag­ine Dragons’ “What­ever it Takes” from their al­bum Evolve (In­ter­scope, Tidal) were re­pro­duced with­out the sibi­lance I heard on Ariana Grande’s vo­cals. The low bass was de­cent, but not as strong as with the Ul­ti­mate Ear Ref­er­ence Re­mas­tered or Ety­motics ER4, which I have been us­ing when a wired con­nec­tion is not a prob­lem. The sound­stage on this track was sig­nif­i­cantly larger with the Sennheis­ers, and much closer to my ref­er­ence head­phones than the Ap­ple-sup­plied IEMs.

In ad­di­tion to lis­ten­ing to mu­sic, I con­nected the Sennheis­ers to both an iPad and iPhone at the same time so I could watch videos on my iPad but also an­swer any calls I might re­ceive. The Sennheis­ers switched back and forth with­out any is­sues and there were no prob­lems with in­tel­li­gi­bil­ity on ei­ther end.

High Points

The CX 6.00BT stayed con­nected to my var­i­ous de­vices with a range of a bit more than 30 feet with clear line of sight and a lit­tle bit less when there were walls in be­tween.

Per­haps more im­por­tantly, the Sennheis­ers were com­fort­able and stayed in my ears with­out fall­ing out dur­ing runs, at the gym, or just nor­mal day-to-day ac­tiv­i­ties. I was a bit con­cerned that the mod­ules on the con­nect­ing wire might bounce around and cause the ear pieces to come out, but there was noth­ing to worry about.

The Sennheiser CapTune app is a bit limited in functionality but pro­vides equal­iza­tion, which al­lows for fine tun­ing of the sound.

Low Points

The sound is ever-so-slightly bright on the high end, which could get fa­tigu­ing over longer lis­ten­ing ses­sions.

The lack of Blue­tooth 5.0 did not cause con­nec­tiv­ity prob­lems, but the 5.0 stan­dard prom­ises supply a much longer bat­tery life due to its in­creased ef­fi­ciency. This could be im­por­tant if a bit more than six hours of use will not get you through the day. With that said, Blue­tooth 5.0 IEMs are still some­thing of a rar­ity on the mar­ket at the mo­ment, but they will soon be­come the norm.

The in­cluded case is not prac­ti­cal for travel. If you want a case to use while on the road, you will likely need to get an­other one. The sup­plied case is just too bulky.

Con­clu­sion

The Sennheiser CX 6.00BT is a def­i­nite step up in sound qual­ity from the head­phones that come with any por­ta­ble de­vice I have ever pur­chased. The im­proved sound qual­ity and com­fort make the CX 6.00BT easy to rec­om­mend. Their light weight and dual de­vice functionality made them my go to for trav­el­ling. If they were go­ing to be my only ear­phone, I would opt for the larger HD1, but for on the road use, the Sennheiser CX 6.00BT is hard to beat as a trav­el­ling com­pan­ion.

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