CREATIVE SXFI AIR

Design & Construction

The Creative SXFI Air is the next step in the rather boring headphone market. After many years of research and development, Creative once again makes a comeback with a hype-worthy product that may change the way to hear sound. Starting off with design, the SXFI Air is made with plastic all around and a metal headband for durability. The headband is covered with fabric covers but does not have a cushion headrest. The earpads are made of soft fabric cushions that help circulate air better than normal memory form. The earcups do pivot in all directions to fit perfectly. Under the left earcup has the (From Front-Back): Power button, removable Nanoboom Mic, 3.5mm input, USB Type-C port, Source button, Micro-SD card slot and Super X-FI on/off button. while on the face of the left earcup, we have the touchpad. to control playback functions. Swipe down for Vol-, swipe up for Vol+ swipe towards the front for next track, swipe backwards for previous track, single tap to play/pause and answer/end calls. LED rings around both earcups will light up when it is left to charge and when connecting. It can be turned off should you prefer to stay low-profile. It takes about 3 hours to charge from a dead battery. Pairing via Bluetooth is simple and quick. A Blue LED light up once connected and a green LED will light up when Super X-Fi is enabled. The LED ring around the earcups are 16.7 .illion colour spectrum, hence it plays well with the gaming community. The top of the headphone bears an embossed 'CREATIVE' logo and both sides of the headband and bear the 'Super X-Fi' logo. The headband is very light and but not padded. The exterior of the headphones gives off this matte colour scheme that resist fingerprints smudges very well. Unfortunately, the SXFI Air does not fold down into a smaller profile for everyday use and is rather bulky and heavy at 338g for commuting. It also does not come with any case or pouch to help protect it from scratches and drops.

Sound Quality

The 50mm headphone drivers certainly live up to its Super X-Fi name. They produce an extremely clear sound signature to provide for a very immersive experience. Based on user experience, the noise isolation is decent, blocking out loud surrounding noise when there was no music on. Through the SXFI App, users are reuired to do head-mapping to help the AI personalise a profile for you You are required to take 3 photos of your left ear, front face and right ear before the app registrs any data. Through the app, you may also play music straight off it or customise your sound preferences in the built-in equalizer. Highs are crystal-clear. Mids have claroty and details and bass is weak in my opinion. The bass doesn't have the kick of a surround sound system. In fact, even at +9 levels of bass, I couldn't een decipher any oomph or thump in my ears when listening to music. For movies, the entire sound frquency works fine with sound coming from all directions, re-creating a surround sound system that you can wear on your head. All these functions can be controlled via SXFI App available for download on the App Store and Play Store. In my honest opinion, I feel that the SXFI Air really shines when it comes to watch movies but doesn't work as well as a music headphone. Soothing jazz and Pop music sure works but bass-heavy EDM and Hip-Hop tracks suffer from the lack of bass. Call quality was okay, the caller manage to hear me on the other end clearly.

Connectivity & Portability

The headphone operates both passively and wirelessly. In wireless mode, it supports the standard SBC codecs and Bluetooth Version 4.2 for clear audio transmission. The mic and controls on the earcups are disabled in wired mode via the included 3.5mm cable. However, the volume remains similar in both wireless and wored mode. Listening via the USB Type-C cable or putting in a Micro-SD up to 128GB is possible. Users can put the headphone in Bluetooth pairing by holding down the source button. The battery life measures around 10 hours; simply unacceptable in 2019. The headphones' connectivity to the app is perfect as I do not experience any hiccups in Bluetooth connectivity.

PROS

  • Clear, Bright Sound Signature

  • Snug & Comfortable

  • Easy Controls For Music Playback, Volume & Calls

  • In-App Equalizer

  • Super X-Fi Head-Mapping Personalisation

  • USB-C Fast Charging

  • Nanoboom Mic For Calls

  • LED Lighting

CONS​​​​

  • Not Portable For Outdoor Use

  • No Carrying Case/Pouch

  • Short Battery LIfe

  • Heavy & Bulky

The Bottom Line

The Creative SXFI Air is a world's first surround sound holographic headphone housing comfortable ear cushions, equalizer sound customisation and easy to use controls. However, I feel that it is a rather rushed product. The headphones have a terrible battery life, bulky form factor and does not fold up or flat to help it become portable for commuting use. It is highly recommended for home use due to its large form factor. Two colours are available to fit users of different gender.

WE RATE IT!

7/10

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