I’ve had my Bowers & Wilkins PX8’s for a little bit now, so I thought I’d share a quick review. I’ve personally owned the P3, P5, PX, and now the PX8. The PX8, in my opinion, are Bowers & Wilkins finally finding their stride with wireless headphones.
As with most of their headphones, straight out of the box, you notice the exceptional quality of the materials. These headphones feel premium, with a build that speaks of durability and elegance. Beautiful Nappa leather and aluminum arms paired with memory foam earpads. Compared to the Focal Bathys and Mark Levinson 5909’s, the PX8’s are in a world of their own as far as materials. Additionally you'll find a nice case with Nappa leather zipper handle and an inner compartment to store the included cables.
When it comes to comfort, the PX8’s don’t disappoint. They fit snugly around the ears, creating a pleasant experience even during prolonged listening sessions. You won't find them causing any discomfort, which is a significant improvement over previous models (they’ve been dragged for clamping force).
The Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) feature is decent, offering a good level of isolation from external noise. While it might not be the best in the market, it certainly does a respectable job, allowing you to immerse yourself in your tunes without much distraction. The pass-through mode is also quite nice and a welcomed change.
So how do they sound? The sound stage is impressively wide, creating an almost live concert-like feel. This is especially true with classical music. Listening to the Pittsburgh Symphony play Beethoven 9, I can get a clear sense of where each instrument is on-stage (and I’ve been to dozens of their concerts). The bass is punchy (see later note about break-in), without overwhelming the mids and highs. You’ll want to ensure you break-in these cans. I’ve seen it recommended to budget 30-50 hours of use before really analyzing the sound. The bass initially is a bit uncontrolled, but after breaking-in it’s tightened-up significantly. Additionally, you may find that decreasing the bass -2db in the Bowers & Wilkins app provides a more balanced mix, especially with ANC enabled.
Lastly, the convenience factor with the new iPhone 15 Pro is noteworthy if you’re an Apple fan. The USB-C port allows for lossless audio through the included USB-C cable, which was previously not possible through the lightning port.
In summary, the Bowers & Wilkins PX8 headphones are an excellent choice for those looking for a high-quality, comfortable, and sonically pleasing listening experience. They tick all the boxes for what you'd want in a premium pair of headphones, especially if you're considering convenience into the equation.