Sony’s new headphones and speakers are all about skull-rattling bass

Sony’s new headphones and speakers are all about skull-rattling bass

Sony is changing up the strategy around its mainstream wireless headphones and speakers. Today, the company is announcing several new products and introducing a new brand, ULT Power Sound, to go with them. Any kind of actual “name” is an improvement from years past, when Sony would typically just refer to devices by their model number. And as the branding implies, all of these new products — three speakers and one pair of headphones — focus on lively, bass-forward sound.

All of them also have an ULT button that can cycle between different sound modes depending on how much bass emphasis you want. ULT1 gets you “deeper, lower frequency bass,” while ULT2 delivers “powerful, punchy bass.” And yes, apparently there’s a difference between those two when it comes to the overall EQ. You can basically think of ULT as the next generation of Sony’s old Extra Bass mode.

The ULT Tower 10 is Sony’s new go-to party speaker.
Image: Sony

As for the products themselves, a giant 64-pound party speaker called the ULT Tower 10 leads the way at $1,199. It’s got all the usual party speaker tricks like lights that sync to your music, an included microphone for karaoke sessions, omnidirectional sound, and the aforementioned ULT1 and ULT2 sound modes, if you really want to rattle the walls. There are 34 different LED light zones on this thing, and Sony describes its sound as “overwhelmingly powerful.”

The $500 ULT Field 7 is the company’s latest and greatest Bluetooth speaker.
Image: Sony

Stepping down from there, Sony is announcing the ULT Field 7, its new flagship Bluetooth speaker that replaces the SRS-XG500. Priced at $499 and measuring over 20 inches wide, this thing is far from small, but it’s got integrated handles that make carrying it around less burdensome. You can expect up to 30 hours of battery life, though that’ll drop to 25 hours if you’ve got the lighting and ULT modes enabled. (There’s also a seven-band EQ if you want to further customize the audio.) The ULT Field 7 is rated IP67 against dust and water, and Sony says it’s also got a rustproof design.

Sony claims even the very compact ULT Field 1 can kick out impressive bass.
Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge

Last for the speakers is one that you can actually consider portable. The $129 ULT Field 1 comes in several different colors (black, gray, green, and orange) and has a compact design that still kicks out strong bass. This one only has a single ULT sound mode and can last for up to 12 hours of continuous listening. You can use it as a speakerphone — a feature I always appreciate in Bluetooth speakers — and it’s got a built-in strap that can easily be attached to your bag.

The ULT Wear are Sony’s new mid-tier noise-canceling wireless headphones.
Image: Sony

And then there’s the ULT Wear, a new set of headphones that replaces Sony’s WH-XB910. For $199.99, you’re getting several features carried down from the premium 1000XM5, including on-ear detection, upgraded noise cancellation, head-tracking spatial audio, and faster quick charging. The M5 still offer Sony’s best ANC and sound, but the company says the driver in these headphones was specifically designed for deep bass response. I briefly tried out the ULT Wear a few weeks ago, and while the ULT1 and ULT2 modes were a little much for my taste, there are people out there who can’t get enough bass — and these headphones are for them.

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