B&W PX7 review: Near-perfect wireless headphones (2024)

A Mashable Choice Award is a badge of honor, reserved for the absolute best stuff we’ve tested and loved.

A little over two years ago, hi-fi company B&W launched its first-ever set of wireless, noise-cancelling headphones, the PX. They sounded great and had a lot of nice features, but they weren't very comfortable.

Now, is back with its top-of-the-line PX7 headphones, which I'm happy to report are a big improvement over the PX.

Carbon fiber, baby

Thanks to the carbon fiber composite material used for the arms and the larger ear cushions, the PX7 are lighter and far more comfortable than the PX. These things are sometimes hard to tell right away; the PX didn't seem that uncomfortable at first, but over longer sessions I'd inevitably have to take them off. With the PX7, I've had no such problems. They're not the comfiest headphones I've had — they're still fairly heavy and can weigh down your head — but I was able to forget I had them on for an hour or so, which is always a good sign.

The design is different, too. The PX7 are a little bulkier, rounder, with fewer sharp edges; the old model is a little more delicate and perhaps a little fancier. I prefer the PX7's look, but at $400, they don't do much to stand out from all the other cans out there.

B&W PX7 review: Near-perfect wireless headphones (2)

You also get a nice, semi-hard carrying case.Credit: STAN SCHROEDER/MASHABLE

There are other minor details B&W has fixed, like putting a nice big "R" and "L" on the inside of the earcups. It's important how you wear these headphones, as they have angled drivers to provide a wider sound stage.

Controls are alright, with dedicated buttons for noise cancellation, play/pause/volume, and power/Bluetooth. I sometimes struggled with reaching the right one, but I've yet to find a pair of headphones that nail this perfectly. There's also a headphone jack and USB-C connector. The PX7 have sensors which automatically play/pause playback when you put them on and remove them.

One thing that B&W did not fix is the foldable earcups, which still only fully fold outwards instead of inwards — a minor quibble but annoying nevertheless.

Connectivity, noise cancellation, and battery life

B&W PX7 review: Near-perfect wireless headphones (3)

The PX7 flip all the way round when you turn them outwards, but only to a certain point if you turn them inwards, which is slightly annoying if you want to wear them around your neck.Credit: STAN SCHROEDER/MASHABLE

The B&W PX7 are primarily wireless headphones, and they support a variety of standards, meaning your music will sound great no matter which source you connect them to. The Bluetooth range was good, as I was able to walk around my flat and even leave my phone in another room with no interruptions.

B&W got noise cancellation right on their first try, so I had no doubt the PX7 will perform well in that department. I haven't tested them on an airplane (the best test in my opinion) but they dialed down the droning of my air conditioner excellently. The PX7 have four settings: off, low, high and auto. I've mostly alternated between high and off, depending on whether I was at home or outside. The noise cancellation is adaptive, meaning the cans use four built-in mics to determine the source of the noise and cancel it.

There are two common issues with noise cancellation; one is the hiss that you get when you turn it on, and the other is sound degradation. The PX7 performed admirably in both cases: The hiss is there but it's barely audible and quite pleasant. The sound does degrade, especially when you dial noise cancellation to high, but the effect is like switching from a hi-res recording to an mp3: You still hear everything, but the soundstage gets narrower and everything sounds a bit flatter.

B&W PX7 review: Near-perfect wireless headphones (4)

The controls on the side of the earcups are fairly easy to reach.Credit: STAN SCHROEDER/MASHABLE

Advertised battery life was 30 hours. With the rest of my gadgetry only lasting for a day or two, this was plenty for me; I only had to recharge them three times in three weeks.

Call quality was alright; there was sometimes crackling in the background, but I had no problem understanding the person on the other end.

Finally, the PX7 come with a dedicated mobile app, which lets you check battery status, fine-tune the noise cancellation settings, manage connections and update the software, among other features. The app is not something you'll use daily but it is helpful, and what it does, it does well.Note that voice assistants such as Siri and Google Assistant aren't natively supported, which is a somewhat odd omission. Personally, I never use any of them, so it's not a big loss for me, but if you do, it's something to consider.

Highly refined sound

The PX7 sound absolutely fantastic. The bass goes deep, the soundstage is wide, the details are astounding. The sound is a little warm and dark, which is a trait of all B&W headphones, but unlike on the PX, vocals were present, loud and clear.

B&W PX7 review: Near-perfect wireless headphones (5)

B&W PX7 are considerably more comfortable than the B&W PX.Credit: STAN SCHROEDER/MASHABLE

At one point, I was startled by the applause from the people seemingly sitting next to me at a Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds live recording in a small setting. That's the sort of experience you get from the PX7.

Unfortunately, I was unable to test the PX7 directly against its closest competitors, Sony's WH-1000XM3 and Bose 700. Compared to the B&W's own PX, they offered far more detailed and slightly brighter sound. B&W's top-of-the-range, wired P9 Signature, have a similar sound but offer a wider stage, firmer bass and more details. They cost more than double the price of the PX7, however. For a final comparison, I dusted off my old Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2, which have a pretty bright sound, and while they (amazingly) held their own, they couldn't match the deep bass and the precision of the PX7.

B&W PX7 review: Near-perfect wireless headphones (6)

Mercifully, the PX7 have a headphone jack and come with two cables: a 3.5mm audio cable and a USB-C cable.Credit: STAN SCHROEDER/MASHABLE

One important detail: The PX7 were noticeably quieter than the PX, no matter which source I connected them to. This was not a problem for me, as they were still plenty loud, but it's something to have in mind.

Note: In my testing, I listened to a mix of MP3s, CD-quality files and 24-bit FLAC files. I've tested the headphones both wirelessly and with a wire, from a variety of sources, including the iPhone 11 Pro Max and a 2017 MacBook Pro. The choice of music included Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Peter Gabriel, Deftones, Morcheeba, NoMeansNo, The Knife and Seven That Spells, among many others.

Possibly best in class

The PX7 aren't cheap at $400, but they're the whole package, with fantastic sound, great noise cancellation, a rich set of features and a high level of comfort. If you can afford them, buy them.

B&W PX7 review: Near-perfect wireless headphones (7)

Stan Schroeder

Senior Editor

Stan is a Senior Editor at Mashable, where he has worked since 2007. He's got more battery-powered gadgets and band t-shirts than you. He writes about the next groundbreaking thing. Typically, this is a phone, a coin, or a car. His ultimate goal is to know something about everything.

Recommended For You

Eight Sleep's Pod 3 cooling mattress cover is clearly amazing, but it was as frustrating as it was functional

It cools, heats, and tracks biometrics, but I didn't *love* it.

By RJ Andersen

The Avocado Green pillow is an eco-friendly choice for side sleepers

It's not perfect, though.

By Alison Barretta

Both sides of Sleep Number's True Temp pillow are the 'cool side'

It also helped with nightly teeth grinding.

By Alison Barretta

You probably don't need a $1K bed frame, but Thuma's is ridiculously easy to assemble

It's an investment, but it sets up in less than 20 minutes and is super sturdy.

By Jae Thomas

The best alarm clocks of 2023

Stop jolting awake with a smartphone alarm.

By Daniel Modlin

More in Tech

Best gifts for grandma: Ideas for your nana, abuela, or oma

Please don't get her another pair of slippers.

By Mashable Shopping

What to give someone celebrating her first Mother's Day

These are the perfect gifts for new moms.

By Miller Kern

The 40+ best gift ideas for the woman in your life

Prove you've been listening by avoiding the generic route.

By Jae Thomas and Caitlin McCormack

The best sentimental Mother's Day gifts

The best gifts are the ones that mean something.

By Dylan Haas and Kaitlyn McInnis

Our favorite tech gifts: Treat yourself to a new toy with that tax return money

These are the gifts you dream about.

By Leah Stodart , Miller Kern , and Timothy Beck Werth

Trending on Mashable

NYT Connections today: See hints and answers for May 19

Everything you need to solve 'Connections' #343.

By Mashable Team

NASA spacecraft spots dead robot on Mars surface

A Martian artifact.

By Mark Kaufman

'Wordle' today: Here's the answer hints for May 19

Here are some tips and tricks to help you find the answer to "Wordle" #1065.

By Mashable Team

NYT Connections today: See hints and answers for May 18

Everything you need to solve 'Connections' #342.

By Mashable Team

NASA spacecraft saw something incredible near Jupiter's Great Red Spot


By Elisha Sauers

The biggest stories of the day delivered to your inbox.

This newsletter may contain advertising, deals, or affiliate links. Subscribing to a newsletter indicates your consent to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. You may unsubscribe from the newsletters at any time.

Thanks for signing up. See you at your inbox!

B&W PX7 review: Near-perfect wireless headphones (2024)


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Mr. See Jast

Last Updated:

Views: 5335

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (55 voted)

Reviews: 86% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Mr. See Jast

Birthday: 1999-07-30

Address: 8409 Megan Mountain, New Mathew, MT 44997-8193

Phone: +5023589614038

Job: Chief Executive

Hobby: Leather crafting, Flag Football, Candle making, Flying, Poi, Gunsmithing, Swimming

Introduction: My name is Mr. See Jast, I am a open, jolly, gorgeous, courageous, inexpensive, friendly, homely person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.