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Bowers & Wilkins C5 Series 2 In-Ear Headphones, Secure Fit, Black
- REDESIGNED FOR PREMIUM AUDIO AND COMFORT - C5 Series 2 hifi earbuds feature redesigned drive units for enhanced sound quality and a new cable for better comfort and performance. C5's snug fit and stunningly realistic sound means you can forget the rest of the world and lose yourself in music. At the same time, these in-ear headphones let in just enough ambient noise to allow you to retain your sense of place.
- CONTROLS iPHONE AUDIO - Made with an iPhone remote/microphone compatible cable, they can control your iPhone just like the stock earbuds. They will also work with all other smartphones, tablets and MP3 players (mobile devices other than compatible iOS models will not necessarily offer control functionality)
- INNOVATIVE SECURE LOOP DESIGN - Created with a cushioned loop that curls around the ear’s inner rim to hold them in place, the C5 S2 ensures a precise yet comfortable fit, even on the go
- RICH AND EXPANSIVE AUDIO - The Micro Porous Filter acts as a sonic diffuser, opening up the sound and making music feel remarkably rich and expansive, even in a small package
- 2 YEAR LIMITED WARRANTY - Bowers & Wilkins' C5 S2 In-Ear Headphones come with a 2-year limited warranty only when purchased from an authorized dealer including Amazon.com (indicated by ships from and sold by Amazon.com)
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From the manufacturer
Bowers & Wilkins
Bowers & Wilkins is an audio company with nearly five decades of experience creating the loudspeaker systems that world-leading recording studios depend upon.
What's in the box?
- C5 Series 2 headphones
- Ear tips in 3 different sizes
- Storage pouch
C5 Series 2 in-ear headphones
From Bowers & Wilkins
C5 Series 2 takes in-ear sound quality to new heights, thanks to ingenious design features and some subtle improvements in small-scale drive unit technology.
C5 Series 2 retains the Secure Loop design of its predecessor, keeping the headphones snugly and securely in your ears. Other design features include a choice of three sizes of ear buds, enhancing comfort and noise isolation.
Featuring a redesigned 9.2mm dynamic driver, these headphones deliver bass that’s powerful yet controlled, resulting in a more natural, open and detailed sound.
An ingenious cushioned loop expands to fit around the inner ridge of your ear, anchoring your headphones securely in place.
Comfort-fit ear buds
C5 Series 2’s soft silicone ear buds come in a choice of three different sizes. So they’ll feel snug and keep external noise to a minimum, no matter what size your ears are.
Made for iPhone
C5 Series 2’s Made-for-iPhone cable allows you to control your music remotely, and switch seamlessly between listening to music and making calls.
New High-Definition Drive Units.
C5 Series 2 use a new 9.2mm dynamic driver, and have been optimized to deliver bass that’s powerful yet precisely controlled resulting in a more natural, open and detailed sound.
Micro Porous Filter
When it comes to in-ear headphones, nothing messes with sound quality like a loose fit. C5 Series 2 stays put thanks to its Secure Loop design. Cushioned loops expand to fit inside the rim of your ears, holding the earphones firmly in place. The loops are infinitely adjustable, so you always get the perfect fit. Or they can be detached, if you would rather use the C5 Series 2 without. Gone are the days when you have to stop your workout to adjust your ear buds.
|C5 Series 2||PX||P9 Signature||P5 Wireless||P5 Series 2||P3 Series 2|
|Connectivity||Wired 3.5mm||Bluetooth aptX||Wired 3.5mm||Bluetooth aptX||Wired 3.5mm||Wired 3.5mm|
|Design||In ear||Wireless over ear||Over ear||Wireless on ear||On ear||On ear|
|Carrying case||Soft zipper pouch||Protective pouch||Protective pouch||Soft quilted pouch||Soft quilted pouch||Protective hard shell case|
|Bowers & Wilkins App||✓|
|Charge via USB||✓||✓|
|Ear pads||Ear tips - S, M, L||Leather with ballistic nylon outer||Leather||Leather||Leather||Leather|
|Drive units||2 x 9.2mm||2 x 40mm||2 x 40mm||2 x 40mm||2 x 40mm||2 x 30mm|
|Frequency||10 Hz - 20 kHz||10 Hz - 20 kHz||2 Hz - 30 kHz||10 Hz - 20 kHz||10 Hz - 20 kHz||10 Hz - 20 kHz|
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|Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping|
|Sold By||Amazon.com||Amazon.com||Amazon.com||Zorro Sounds||Amazon.com||Thousands of Electronics|
|Item Dimensions||9.6 x 12.4 x 4.8 in||1 x 1 x 1 in||3.82 x 7.28 x 2.05 in||5.91 x 1.97 x 2.76 in||22.44 x 10.43 x 8.66 in||5.5 x 7.75 x 1.75 in|
|Item Weight||0.71 ounces||0.8 ounces||0.6 ounces||5.29 ounces||10.78 lbs||7.04 ounces|
|Additional Features||iPhone remote, neodymium magnets||headphones||tangle-free-cord||—||inline remote and microphone, removable ear tips||lightweight|
True Sound. Zero Distractions.
Crystal Clear Audio
C5 Series 2 contain a micro-porous filter that acts as a sonic diffuser, improving the clarity, depth and range of your music.
High Definition Drive Units
C5 Series contain bespoke 9.2mm dynamic transducer and produce remarkable bass extension.
Consistent Listening Experience
Tungsten steel weights balance the speaker units towards the ear, so you'll get clean, consistent audio no matter how bumpy your ride.
** If you have any volume issues with the product, please check to ensure your product connection is secure between device and headphones**
Top customer reviews
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The range is extensive, the dynamics are superb, they give good, tight bass and clear, scintillating highs as well as a midrange that cuts through when it needs to. Overall I would characterize these 'phones as "tight" in the best senses of that term. They are comfortable to wear and block out outside noise remarkably well for a "pure" (no active noise-cancellation) device.
They do suffer from the problem inherent in all in-ear 'phones, which is that the cables are microphonic. You can hear the sound of your own footsteps, or when something rubs the cable, but the cables are so light that this is minimized to some extent. My ER-4P 'phones are much more microphonic, and these are more comfortable with comparable sound quality. I still may use the Etymotics on airline flights because they block out more external noise, but I also might prefer these for the fit. I'll bring them both on the next flight and we'll see.
ABOUT THE FIT: I see a number of negative reviews and I really don't understand how these could not fit a person's ears. I myself have struggled to get a good fit on in-ear 'phones but these were perfect out of the box once I figured out which set of silicone inserts worked best with my ears. Or maybe I do understand: Today when I went out walking I mistakenly put them in the wrong ears, and for the first ten or fifteen minutes I wondered if I was falling out of love with these 'phones, because they kept slipping out of my ears or breaking the in-ear seal. Then I realized my error and that nice, tight, adjustable fit came right back. If you can't get a good fit, make sure the bud with the controls on it is on the left side. Then slide the loop in or out according to your needs. The loop does tend to shrink over time, so you might experiment by wrapping a tiny slice of scotch tape around the loop at the top of the adjustment hole once you find a fit you like.
Update - 11/27/16 - I came back and dropped it a star, I just cannot get these to stay in my ears properly. They do not fall off, but they slide out just enough that the sound goes from awesome to very tinny, then I have to stop what I am doing and push them back in. I tried all of the rubber attachments they provided and no good. I really want to like these because when they are in they sound great. But they just do not stay in.
After reviewing B&W P5 and P7 headphones, you are no longer surprised by high quality of "formal attire" packaging C5 arrived in, but nevertheless - it's still a rewarding unboxing experience. Just like with any of their other models, you are presented with a high res image on the front and a comprehensive description on the back, including design details of the internal components. Opening magnetic flap cover reveals C5 under the plastic display with a description of "secure loop" functionality inside of the flap cover (more about it later). Out of the box, you get a product manual including a separate instruction card for the "secure loop" fitment. Also, you get 4 sets of custom eartips and a very unique suede half-moon shaped headphone case. B&W always tries to stand out from the crowd with their unique headphone cases, some of which are a bit over the top. This particular case is actually not bad.
Design of the earpiece shell is all metal, and has a nice weight to it though doesn't feel too heavy. Actually the design is quite unique. First of all, the back of the shell has what appears to be a very fine mesh cover with a solid feel without any flex. Underneath of it is a micro-porous filter responsible for a wide airy sound with a very impressive soundstage - definitely among the best I heard from in-ear design. But unlike "open back" headphones, there is no sound leakage. As a matter of fact, with a right selection of eartips, these have an excellent passive noise isolation. I'm still scratching my head how they were able to accomplish this with such a one-way filter. Still, this is not a true star of this design, but "secure loop" is!
The cable which comes out of the shell goes into a pre-shaped "memory" loop which wraps around and goes through a groove on the side of the shell. By pulling/pushing on the loop you can change its diameter to adjust for a comfortable fitment around ear's inner rim. B&W refers to this as infinite loop adjustment since there is no click action, it just slides and stays in place. It's sort of an alternative to a wing stabilizers used in sports IEMs. This "secure loop" is very effective and quite comfortable, but I would NOT recommend adjusting with headphones inside of your ear because you will get your skin pinched! There is also a way to release a small tab at the end of memory wire which allows for the loop to come out of the groove, thus being able to use C5 without loop-stabilizer. You can actually use it with a "memory wire" behind the ear but have to swap L/R sides; and speaking of which you do get a clear L/R marking on each earpiece.
With memory wire shielding being an extended strain relief, next is the actual cable which is round and soft. It is a little bit thinner prior to a short y-splitter and becomes thicker going down to a straight slim gold plated headphone jack connector with a great strain relief. The left side of the wire also has an in-line remote/mic. Though meant to be used with iOS devices, multi-function button in the middle is fully compatible with most of the common Android phones from Samsung, HTC, LG, and Sony. With a single click you can Play/Pause/Call (to control music playback as well as to pick up phone calls), with a double click you skip next, with a triple click you skip prev, and long press starts Google NOW. Volume control is specific to iOS devices only.
I started my review with a bold statement about C5 capturing the essence of P5 and P7 headphones, so you can definitely prepare yourself for a bass enhanced sound signature. C5 Series 2 definitely has a resemblance to P5 Series 2, which is rare for IEM, but C5 takes it a step further with a more balanced sound and a more upfront upper mids and a wider soundstage and a better treble extension, pushing it closer into P7 territory. As a matter of fact, I found C5 upper mids/treble to sound more natural and less colored in comparison to P7. One thing I still can't get over is how much C5 feels like a dual dynamic driver due to it's fine-tuning and a balance between the bass and the high frequency, something that is not easy to accomplish with a single dynamic driver design used in C5.
The sound signature of C5 Series 2 is definitely balanced with an enhanced bass. The sound itself is very dynamic and has great layering and separation. Low end has an analog quality bass with a deep smooth sub-bass texture and punchy fast mid-bass. Bass is tight and very well controlled without spilling into lower mids; it only comes to play when being called for. Upper mids are very clear and detailed, have a perfect balance between brightness and warmth, very lush, organic, and with a relatively (to my ears) accurate vocal tonality. Treble is well extended, very smooth, and without a hint of sibilance or harshness. Soundstage is wide and deep with a feeling of airiness and nearly a 3D imaging. I also found these to be quite forgiving with lower quality recording, and in general very efficient without a need for amping. Furthermore, I didn't sense any microphonics/cable noise.
Overall, I'm probably starting to sound like a broken record with every review saying "this is a best pair of headphones I heard so far". There is a factor of new-toy-syndrome which sometime clouds our judgment, or a brain burn-in when you listen for awhile to the same pair of headphones until they grow on you. After a free-air burn in for about 20-25 hrs (strongly recommend for any dynamic driver), I already knew I'm looking at something special, and I took my time to listen and to compare C5 Series 2 (don't have any previous experience with original C5) to my other headphones with enhanced bass signatures. And every time I was coming back to C5 where it had the most dynamic sound, the most analog quality of low end, and among the most detailed and organic upper mids/treble for a dynamic driver. In all seriousness, if B&W will tune down their bass closer to neutral level - you will be looking at one fine pair of smooth reference IEMs. Yes, it has a big fun bass, but it's done very tastefully and tuned to stay in balance with the rest of the spectrum. These definitely get my high recommendation!
Most recent customer reviews
Cables look kind of really weak