7 used & new from $80.00

Trade in your item
Get up to a $40.16
Gift Card.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon

Sony MDRNC500D Digital Noise-Canceling Headphone (Black) (Discontinued by Manufacturer)

4.1 out of 5 stars 75 customer reviews
| 3 answered questions

Available from these sellers.
  • World'S First Headphone With Digital Technology For Precise Noise Canceling
  • Up To 99.7% Noise Reduction At 160 Hz
  • Artificial Intelligence (Ai) Noise Canceling With Automatic Selection Between 3 Different Environment Modes
  •  Internal Li-Ion Battery For Up To 16 Hours Of Use, Plus Allows For Use Of Aa Batteries For Even Longer Operation
  • Built-In Monitor Switch Lets You Silence The Audio To Listen To Outside
  • World's first digital noise canceling headphones
  • Artificial Intelligence noise canceling
Show more
2 new from $399.99 5 used from $80.00

Technical Details

  • lightweight

Product Description

Product Description

The lightweight, MDR-NC500D headphones use digital technology to more accurately reduce stress-inducing noise from planes, trains and busses while providing the high-quality audio expected from Sony.


Experience the world's first headphones that uses digital technology to realize incredible noise reduction along with pristine quality audio with Sony's MDR-NC500D. Reducing up to 99% of ambient noise from airplanes, trains, or at the office, the MDR-NC500D headphones have ground breaking new digital signal processing technology suitable for an optimal listening environment. Enjoy features that include three distinct noise canceling modes, artifical intelligence function that automatically selects the optimal mode, a digital equalizer that ensures high-grade audio without sacrificing the noise canceling effectiveness, and a lightweight design that offers premium comfort.

Noise Canceling Technology
Enjoy music in a quieter environment with MDR-NC500D's noise canceling technology that reduces ambient noise to enhance your audio entertainment. The headphones have an inside microphone on each earpiece that work with an electronic circuitry to create an opposite sound wave to reduce wave. It reduces up to 99% ambient noise when the noise canceling circuit is switched on. Perfect for loud and noisy environments such as planes, trains, buses, work or dorms.
Sony NC500D
Synthesizing with a sound in the opposite phase for ambient sound reduction
Digital Equalizer

Experience high-quality music reproduction and ideal frequencey response with the MDR-NC500D. It delivers a high S/N ratio that is achieved through digital signal processing.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Experience noise canceling optimization with Artificial Intelligence. Because not all ambient noise is the same, the Artificial Intelligence technology will automatically select the optimal noise canceling mode based on intelligent analysis of environmental ambient noise.

Sony NC500D mode
Noise cancelling intelligence that is optimized for your environment
Sony NC500D close up
Pressure relieving urethane cushions for long-lasting comfort
Sony NC500D close up 2
Hear surrounding sound without taking off your headphones with the built-in monitor function
Enjoy long-lasting comfort while listening to your music with the lightweight design of the MDR-NC500D. With pressure relieving urethane cushions in the earpad, the MDR-NC500D is designed for long comfort wear and comes with a premium travel case.

Built-in Monitor Function
The MDR-NC500D has a unique feature that allows you to hear surrounding sound without taking off the headphones. Perfect for listening to announcements, flight attendants, or any external sound without the need to take the headphones off.

Long Battery Life
Enjoy your music for up to 16 hours with the internal lithium-ion battery. Normal AA batteries can be used as well and allows for a joint 28 hours of use.

Travel Ready
Keep the music going on all your trips with the provided travel kit that includes all of the essentials-a premium case to help protect the headphones, an AC power adaptor, AA battery backup kit, and an airplane adaptor.

MDR-NC500D Specs

Frequency Response: 5Hz - 24,000Hz
Driver Unit: 40mm dynamic, closed, dome-type
Magnet Type: Neodymium
Impedance: 40 ohms at 1kHz
Sensitivity (db):
102 dB/mW
Power Handling Capacity:
Cord Length:
6.9 oz (including built in battery)

What's in the Box

  • MDR-NC500D headphones
  • Carrying Case
  • AC Power adaptor for charging internal battery
  • (2) AA Batteries
  • Inflight plug adapter
  • Unimatch plug adapter
  • Connecting cord x3 (.5m stereo mini, 1.5 type stereo mini, cord with battery case)
  • Startup guide
  • Warranty card

Comparison feature

MDR-NC7 Noise Canceling
MDR-NC13 Noise-Canceling
MDR-NC40 Noise Canceling
MDR-NC100D Digital Noise Canceling
MDR-NC200D Digital Noise Canceling
MDR-NC300D Digital Noise Canceling
MDR-NC500D Digital Noise Canceling
Driver Units
30mm 13.5mm 30mm 13.5mm 40mm 16mm 40mm
Ambient Noise Reduction

Digital Noise Canceling with Intelligent Auto Selection

Passive Listening Mode

Monitor Button

Battery Life
25 hours*
50 hours*
20 hours*
 22 hours*
 22 hours*
 20 hours*
 15 hours*

Over-the-head Earbud Over-the-head Earbud Over-the-head
Carrying Case/Pouch

Product Information

Product Dimensions 18 x 8.7 x 11.5 inches
Item Weight 2.3 pounds
Shipping Weight 2.9 pounds
Manufacturer Sony
ASIN B001786D5A
Domestic Shipping Item can be shipped within U.S.
International Shipping This item is not eligible for international shipping. Learn More
Item model number MDR-NC500D
Customer Reviews
4.1 out of 5 stars 75 customer reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
Best Sellers Rank #1,868 in Electronics > Headphones > Over-Ear Headphones
#37,509 in Electronics > Portable Audio & Video > MP3 & MP4 Players & Accessories > MP3 & MP4 Player Accessories
#39,346 in Electronics > Home Audio & Theater
Discontinued by manufacturer Yes
Date first available at Amazon.com April 1, 2008

Warranty & Support

Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here


Would you like to tell us about a lower price?

Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Emil A. Eklund on August 4, 2008
Forgot to bring my noise canceling headphones on a recent trip and decided to pick up a pair of those on the return leg.

The built quality is very good, it comes with a nice (but quite large) case and a full set of cables and adapters.

Although I'm skeptical about the claimed 99% reduction in noise levels I must admit that the noise canceling is very efficient, it's far better than that of any other headset I've tried.

They're comfortable to wear for extended periods of time and the internal battery easily lasts for a full flight. A nice touch is that it also works with AA batteries should you forget to charge the internal battery.

My only complaint is the size of the case, it's much to big. Other than that those headphones are great and I'd recommend them to anyone with a bit of extra space in their carry on.
1 Comment 85 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
I bought these headphones after trying them out at Narita airport in Tokyo earlier this year. I didn't have time to charge the internal battery before the flight, so I used AA batteries in the included adapter cable. That was the only time that I used the external battery. I've logged about 75,000 air miles using these headphones without a single problem.

The noise reduction is excellent, and the headphones are quite comfortable. The digital technology allows the user to adapt the noise reduction curve to the ambient conditions.

Yesterday I swapped headphones with a friend while riding in the back of a Canadair regional jet between San Francisco and Albuquerque. Those of you who have ridden in that section of this aircraft know that it's one of the noisiest rides around. I found that I could barely hear my iPod with his noise-canceling phones, while listening was easy and enjoyable with the Sony digitals.

Since they're digital, the phones are thicker than other brands. That's not a big problem for me. However, the huge case is a problem and doesn't fit easily in my briefcase, so I've started carrying the headphones in a stuff sack with another sack for the charger and other accessories. Everything now fits fine in my briefcase and carry-on.
Comment 52 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
I am an electrical engineer who travels extensively. I have used the Bose QC1 and QC3 for years and deeply appreciate noise cancelling headphones for flights (for the life of me, I cannot figure out why everyone isn't wearing them!).

On a recent trip, I lost one of the ear pads on my QC3, so I figured it was a good time to replace them with the new Sony digital Noise Cancelling headphones. I understand the technology well and expected a great product.

First, some complain about discomfort of these headphones. They are not heavy and I didn't find uncomfortable in the least. If my choice is wearing headphones versus listening to the drone of a A340, give me the headphones ANY DAY!

Now the good part: the noise cancelling is superior to anything that I have ever heard (though I suspect good earbuds, like Shure, are probably better. I am not a fan of ear buds). These Sonys are certainly better than the Bose. The sound quality is Sony-perfect and I could barely hear aircraft engines. Besides superior noise cancelling, the Sony blocked out ALL noise, including talking or those damn crying babies, whereas the Bose only cancelled out the engines, with little attenuation of baby noise. DSP to the rescue-Sony has done a superb job of noise cancellation!

And, now for the bad part: These headphones have a VERY annoying thumping problem that comes and goes. It sounds as if someone is constantly thumping on the headphones on a windown and it can be loud. The problem seems worse on aircraft but I am sitting in the basement right now and I can still get the thumping. There is a definite problem with the noise cancelling algorithm that causes the phones to start thumping at a low frequency.
Read more ›
7 Comments 74 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
I own the Sony MDR-NC500D, and the Bose QC-1 & QC-2. At the bottom of the list is the QC-1. They don't reduce noise that well, and I've had the headband break twice, which Bose fixed, but shouldn't happen. In the middle is the QC-2, and the best of the three is the Sony. The reason why, is Noise Cancellation. The 500Ds have superior noise reduction, without debate. That is the primary reason for getting them, and they are several dB better than the QC2, at least on triple-sevens (one engine on each wing) and 747s (two engines on each wing, which is more noisy).

Now on to the other comments-

Comfort: I have a large head, so I adjusted them to the largest size and put them on. After a few minutes I could feel the pressure of the cups on the back of my jaw--they were much too big, and once adjusted 5 clicks smaller they were extremely comfortable, for those long SFO-LHR flights. If your head is small though, I am not sure they can be adjusted small enough.

Audio quality: Very good. The bass response is not as good as the QC2, but close. Far better than most headphones, probably very close to flat. The QC2s exaggerate bass (a bose constant) but for many (including me) we prefer more bass. So I tweak the bass a bit on my player, problem solved.

Battery life: More is better. There's a small pack for a pair of disposable AAs, but it isn't a nice as the Bose solution. And I have to carry a charger around for the lithium batteries.

All in all there's a lot of little stuff to carry around in the headphone case. Bose's QC2 is smaller. QC2s have better bass response, and have better battery life.
Sony's are just as comfortable, the bass response can be equalized, and batteries have to be carried anyway. But the Sony's are much quieter. If you are looking for the best noise reduction, these are unmatched. (even my etymotics don't do as well.)
Comment 22 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Pages with Related Products. See and discover other items: over ear sport headphones