Conclusion: Sony did a bang-up job with the MDR-NC500D. Our major gripes — inability to turn off the cancellation, a poorly designed monitoring feature, and no sound without power — are offset by the headphones’ sound quality, accessory bundle, and digital noise cancellation. The price may be high, but it is in line with competing models from Bose and Sennheiser, and given the NC500D’s uniqueness, we won’t ding Sony for aiming at the market’s high end.
Pros: Comfortable for long periods; good overall sound; supports store bought batteries
Cons: Expensive; cannot turn off the noise cancellation
Comfortable and stylish noise-cancelling headphones
Good Gear Guide.au
19 February 2009
Summary: The Sony MDR-NC500D noise-cancelling headphones do a fantastic job of blocking out repetitive ambient noise. When listening to music they also acquit themselves well, with clear sound and a pleasant character.
Pros: Stylish and scratch-resistant exterior, comfortable padding, battery pack for extended use, good sound quality, noise cancelling works exceptionally well
Cons: Tight fit may annoy some, must be powered to work