Are you looking for a top-end pair of earbuds? Then today might just be your lucky day. The Bowers & Wilkins is a luxury headphone brand that has been in the market for quite a while. They have been producing headsets & now earbuds.
In this review, we will be seeing the new models, the Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs PI5 earbuds. The B & W PI7 earbuds are a dazzling pair of earbuds. They come nicely designed and are incredibly comfortable from what we have seen & read.
The wireless earbuds are sublime in design and provide you with the best audio performance. Yes, they can be pretty expensive, but they come with decent features embedded in them. This is what makes them what they are.
You need to look deeper besides the price point only at times. They look incredible with the light body & the metal that appears on them. You can instantly make that they are elegantly done looking gorgeous & tremendous.
Users have said that they are pretty comfortable to wear for lengthy hours. They know how to make an entrance with their products. Additionally, it comes with exceptional ANC and closes to 6 microphones that you can use for speaking to others.
They work quite well with Google Assistant & Siri. Both sides of the earbuds come with 9.2mm drive units. You can find a dedicated amplifier. Besides, there is a wireless stereo transmission with Bluetooth aptX Adaptive.
With the help, 24-bit hi-res audio can be streamed. However, if you are here for budget models, then you might want to look elsewhere. Because the other earbuds that we are going to read about are the Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds.
This Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds review is worth knowing. They may not be perfect or ideal when compared to the B & W PI7 earbuds, but they come with some pouch. First, they are cheaper than the B & W PI7 earbuds.
The earbuds are able to provide you with excellent sound performance. Besides, noise-canceling is good too. When you are not sure about spending $400 on earbuds, then you can always choose the Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds as a great alternative.
In this review, we will read all the audio performance, features & specifications of both models. This will give us an idea about their capabilities. Besides, we will also find out the winner at the end of the post.
|Bowers & Wilkins PI7||Bowers & Wilkins PI5|
|The earbuds are optimized for hi-resolution audio playback.|
They are pretty comfortable and do not fall off that easily.
It comes with a solid noise cancellation ability.
It has a powerful audio performance.
The microphone performance is acceptable.
|The fitting is quite good, and you can wear it for a prolonged time.|
The audio quality is incredible and precise.
It comes with an exceptional noise-canceling feature.
It provides you with wireless charging support.
There is the two-level ambient listening mode.
|The earbuds do not come with control customization.||Sadly, the feature list needs to improve against the counterpart.|
|SPECIFICATIONS||Bowers & Wilkins PI7||Bowers & Wilkins PI5|
|Name||PI7 True Wireless Noise Cancelling In-Ear Headphones||PI5 True Wireless Noise Cancelling In-Ear Headphones|
|Brand||Bowers & Wilkins||Bowers & Wilkins|
|Noise Cancelling Active||Yes||Yes|
|Microphone Features||Noise cancelling||Noise cancelling|
|Battery Life||4 hours||4.5 hours|
|Ear Tip Sizes Included||Small, Medium, Large||Small, Medium, Large|
|Warranty||2 Year||2 Year|
Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs PI5: Design & Comfort
The design & comfort of the Bowers & Wilkins has been a strong point for them. They have never compromised on that. If you look at both earbuds, they look strikingly similar to each other.
However, we will do our best to explain them to you. The Bowers & Wilkins PI7 earbuds come with specific detail in them. It also has an IP54 rating in them that ensures the products are safe and protected from water.
The manufacture has made them decent to fit inside your pockets without any hassle. It is quite similar to the Apple Airpods design. The earbuds are slightly on the large side, identical to the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2.
It is not very ergonomic compared to the Sennheiser model, though. They come nicely finished with gold tones on them. You can notice the control pad that is circular in shape. They come housing the microphones in them.
But we can say that they appear better than the sober kind of Sennheiser. The B & W PI7 earbuds come with a better look here. The only difference between the charging cases is the lack of any button in front of the B & W PI7 earbuds.
The PI7 earbuds were quite sleek in nature to the other model in here. Their sizing, too, is the same and comes with the same weight. So, we cannot differentiate which of them is better in terms of wearing for lengthy periods.
You can find the soft matte finish on them that brings an opulent touch to them. They are displayed nicely in the charging cases. You can find the Bluetooth button on the inside for pairing it manually.
You will be delighted to know that the charging case of the B & W PI7 earbuds can be used as a wireless adapter for streaming music using aptX. You will need to connect to the analog audio output of your choice.
This feature is not available in the Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds. You will want to notice that the fitting and comfort of both models are almost identical. So, it is difficult to point out which one you are wearing at the moment.
They fit in nicely without any congested feeling inside your ears. However, we did notice that the sound port that is slightly overdone can be annoying at times. All in all, the B & W earbuds are sublime units that you can consider using for long hours due to extreme comforts.
Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs PI5: Build Quality
The build quality of the Bowers & Wilkins models is stunning. You know that when you are shelling out close to $400 & $250 respectively for them, their durability is undeniable. They come designed from metal and robust plastic along with balanced armature and mids and lows.
The Bowers & Wilkins PI7 earbuds have their own individual amplifier. That is a good thing because you can now work on a 9.2mm dynamic driver. You can find the Bluetooth 5.0 that comes having the aptX adaptive & aptX low latency.
It comes with the IP54 rating. That means it is resistant to water. But you must make sure the charging case does not go anywhere to water. It comes with a 2-year warranty that is entirely above most of the true wireless earbuds.
These earbuds are of decent built quality & can survive those accidental falls with aplomb. There is a mild worry about the battery life of the earbuds because they come with a maximum of 4.5 hours.
The Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds look amazingly done when you remove them from the case. Its shape and the controls are silver in shape & circular in design. Yes, they can come outside of your ears when you do not wear them properly.
It is not a major issue but is manageable. The earbuds feel quite top-notch and fantastic. You will notice that the charging case comes engraved having the Bowers & Wilkins across the lid. Users may want to note the LED light strip that indicates the amount of battery present on it.
Similar in size to the B & W PI& earbuds, it comes at 5.7 x 6 x 2.8cm. It is much larger than most of earbud cases. The case is produced from plastic and does not appear quite elegant. We expected a bit more from B & W.
You can choose the kind of silicone ear tips that you want. They come in small, medium & large. You will be surprised to know that the smallest size is quite comfortable to wear for an extended time.
They can be worn outside for a walk or run, but you can hit them by mistake with your hands. This can cause it to fall off from your ears. You will like the ability to control the music using the touch controls.
Overall, the build quality of both the Bowers & Wilkins PI7 and PI5 earbuds was astounding. You can make use of them to listen to music & watch videos. Besides, the units are opulent choices for having with you when you want them.
Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs PI5: Audio Performance
The audio performance of any headset or earbuds, for that matter, decides the fate of it. Let us find out which one is the better unit. The Bowers & Wilkins PI7 earbuds have a V shape audio signature.
It comes decent thanks to the low-end/high-end response to the user. This feature is something that we have not heard about in a long time. However, this feature is quite common on top-end models. You may not get to see it in under $200 models.
The instruments & vocals are a lot clearer in these earbuds. Besides, you can feel the detail & punch coming out of the songs. While some songs sound alright, pop and heavy metal don’t require additional volume in them.
The soundstage of the earbuds is good and above average. It came well for the expansion & imaging of the songs. Users can expect excellent audio quality from it. You can feel more blended listening to the music and understanding the imaging.
You can feel that they isolate little more than what is actually expected from them. They cannot be called the best Bluetooth earbuds you use, but they are decent enough. Probably, this feature has to do with the shape of the earbuds.
If you want to listen to the lows in music, then it might not sound appropriate on these earbuds. Yes, users can certainly feel the punch in there. When you want a sharp quality of the music, the B & W PI7 earbuds are on it.
The Bowers & Wilkins audio performance may not be exactly what you want to listen to. However, you will want to know that they are worth considering keeping in mind the brand. Instantly, you note that the bass is quite powerful.
You can easily pick out the clarity of the instruments and vocals. The accuracy was good, and when you listen to some odd songs, you can hear distortion to a high level. In a sense, these songs come balanced.
Our tester did feel that the manual equalizer was not there and missed them a lot. While the B & W PI7 earbuds come with Qualcomm aptX™ Adaptive audio at 420kbps, the B & W PI5 earbuds have active noise cancellation & aptX Adaptive support.
A notable feature in both earbuds is the dual hybrid driver that comes with individual amplifiers. They provide you with intense realism and detail of the sound quality. You can notice that they come with a 9.2mm dynamic driver for the bass and the mids.
These are crucial for listening to eloquent audio quality. You can also find that there is a balanced armature driver. In the B & W PI7 earbuds, you can find close to 6 microphones present for enhanced audio performance & adaptive noise canceling.
You can charge the earbuds with the help of the charging case getting 4 hours of charge. The battery life is 20 hours that is quite impressive. You can also directly connect to the audio source to retransmit the audio to the B & W PI7 earbuds.
The noise-canceling in the earbuds is stunning. You need to put them on your ears and then listen to them. Our tester was completely blown away by them. Both the B & W PI7 and B & W PI5 earbuds were opulent, to say the least.
Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs PI5: Microphone Performance
The Bowers & Wilkins PI7 earbuds are good to make calls and come infused with 6 microphones in them. That should mean that they are the better ones to make calls and hear yourself clearly. Sadly, that is not the case.
Our tester found that the Bowers & Wilkins PI5 microphone is much better in terms of the call quality than that of the B & W PI7 earbuds. This is perhaps the only category that the B & W PI5 earbuds that outdid the B & W PI7 earbuds.
The volume in the PI7 earbuds is good and helps you to attend the communication better. They are ideal for video chats and calls that do not last long. If you talk outside, then if it is windy, disturbances can come in endlessly.
In the PI5 earbuds, you can keep the volume higher and speak. You will not find any sort of disturbance. When using the B & W PI5 earbuds, the feedback was quite good. Compared to top-end models like Sennheiser & Bose, the microphone quality in both models was average.
That was quite a surprise. The Bowers & Wilkins PI7 earbuds come with two built-in microphones per earbud. You can make use of microphones that work well with Google Assistant and Siri.
Your voice is heard smoothly, and that is what you want to know, using $400 earbuds. The AI bots are also quite responsive for the inquiry in a quick time. The Bowers & Wilkins P15 earbuds come with two built-in microphones per earbud.
However, when you are concerned about the audio performance, noise cancellation, and decent microphone quality, then the PI7 just excels over the PI5. Of course, choosing the PI5 earbuds enables you to save more than $100 in the process.
Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs PI5: Compatibility
Bowers & Wilkins are known for their compatibility abilities. You can verify it with any model, and you will be astounded at how good it is in this aspect. We are not surprised that these two B & W models have come with tremendous compatibility powers.
The Bowers & Wilkins PI7 earbuds have ear detection, voice assistance, adaptive active noise cancellation, the vital aptX Adaptive support, and adjustable ambient listening mode. You can make use of the soundscapes & wireless adapter functionality too.
Our tester thought that the B & W PI7 earbuds come with better controls than the other unit. Users can now operate the playback and then cycle through the listening modes using an accurate & straightforward method.
This feature is because of the intense touch sensor that is found in the earbuds. Similarly, you have the Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds that come with the voice assistance feature that is exceptional in it.
But the touch sensors tend to work overtime, as we may want to put it to you. Sometimes, you can get the wrong kind of gesture and the wrong command issued to it. This can be slightly annoying for the $250 priced earbuds.
Besides, the on-ear detection does not work as we would have liked. It comes with a two-level ambient listening mode, aptX Adaptive support, active noise cancellation & soundscapes. The music on the earbuds can be controlled using touch controls.
You can remember each of the gestures quite quickly because it is not that hard to do so. When you want to use the ambient pass-through mode, you have to use the B & W smartphone app. However, it is mentioned that the battery working life for the B & W PI7 is 4.5 hours.
The B & W PI5 is 4.5 hours; we noticed that the PI5 gives close to 4 hours, not more. If at all you find yourself short on a charge, then recharging for just 10 minutes can give you more than 1 hour of music.
You can make use of a compatible Qi-certified charger. The good news for those of you who fail to keep track of your earbuds is that it comes with a feature. When one of your earbuds falls down, then the music or conversation immediately stops.
Only, when you place the other earbud, it begins again. Thanks to the fast/quick pairing, you can quickly connect with your smartphone when you take them out of the case. Though you walk away from your smartphone, the connectivity is excellent.
However, you may face issues if you move away too far from them, which is quite normal to see. Additionally, the units do come & feel like the same brand produces them. That is quite normal when you compare two models from the same brand.
The same can be said about units like Sennheiser or Corsair; they are almost identical to each other. The manufacturer here has done its best to differentiate not only externally but also internally.
We can tell that they have done an eloquent job at that. The comfort & the warmth which you get listening to the music is something of common ground in them. It is quite bright and feels top end when compared to the PI5 earbuds.
Our tester noticed that the B & W PI5 earbuds came with fewer details that would have otherwise been a fantastic product. The compatibility of both earbuds is good in terms of wireless connectivity.
We cannot really point out to any of them claiming to be better than the other. They are bass-centric earbuds. Few worthy competitors of the Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds include both the Apple AirPods Pro and the Sony WF-1000XM4.
When you want something cheaper, then you might consider using the Beats Powerbeats Pro. You can think of the Cambridge Audio Melomania 1 Plus, which is priced only at $100. We hope that this has helped you.
Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs PI5: Price
The Bowers & Wilkins PI7 earbuds are priced under $400. This model is one of the most expensive units in the market currently. As we read at the beginning of the review, the brand is famous for producing high-end products.
So, to be fair with them, you really cannot expect budget or cheap models. You may want to make use of some alternate models that we have mentioned in the above segment. The Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds are priced under $250.
The PI7 earbuds come with support for full aptX Bluetooth & retransmission a charging case. There is much better audio quality, and the noise cancellation is simply understood why the unit is priced so expensive.
The PI5 earbuds, on the other hand, come relatively cheaper at less than $150 of the PI7 unit. When you are alright with the decent audio and comfort, then the PI5 earbuds should cater to your requirements.
Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs PI5: Verdict
This is it. We have ended our review on the Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds. When you are in search of a decent pair of earbuds, then the PI7 is a good choice. The PI5, too, gave the PI7 stiff competition, but they can be only a single winner today.
The Bowers & Wilkins PI7 earbuds are a stunning product that is definitely worth its price. When you are in the market for good earbuds, then it has to be this. The comfort that you get wearing it for long hours is admirable.
Besides, it comes with other notable features like exceptional audio performance, good microphone abilities & unique wireless capabilities. You can see that the bass is quite heavy. The mid-range was alright and may dissatisfy movies goers.
Otherwise, they are pretty fun and friendly to use for the price range. However, if you cannot go beyond $300, you might as well choose the B&W PI5 that comes with decent features. The feature range is relatively less, but they are not pricey.
Similarly, the Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds come with breathtaking features for the pricing. You cannot get everything from it, but you can get what you only need. That is a good thing for the price point of it.
It does not have the balanced sound quality that the B & W PI7 provided you with due to the 9.2mm dynamic drivers. It comes with a low audio resolution of 16bit, which is okay. However, you can find the 24bit on the B & W PI7 earbuds.
These differences can be taken quite seriously by some users, than most others. They seem to fine and the $150 worth of differences in the Bluetooth wireless. Though they both come with a splendid design, they can be differentiated with the appearance & look.
Our winner in the review between Bowers & Wilkins PI7 vs Bowers & Wilkins PI5 earbuds is the PI7 earbuds. They are quite expensive than the B & W PI5 earbuds, but that is about it. Otherwise, you can get a spectacular product that is worth the money spent for audiophiles.
James Smith has always been intrigued by electronic products since his childhood. After his post graduation in electronics from a popular university, he decided to pursue a career in the electronics sector. But his calling for writing about these marvellous pieces of work got the better of him. That is how UBG was started. With a writing career spanning more than 12 years, James has worked on several hundred product reviews. During his free time, he like to spend time with his pet dog and relax in the swimming pool.