Sony’s cheap new headphones add a major audio upgrade

The WH-CH720N add Sony's A1 chip for top-tier noise-cancelling (ANC) and feature fancy audio upscaling tech too

Sony WH-CH720N headphones
(Image credit: Sony)

Sony is well-known for making some of the best headphones around. Indeed, at the time of writing its top-tier WH-1000XM5 sit atop T3's best-of list because they're simply untouchable. I can vouch for that, having tried many, many pairs of over-ears over the years. 

But, for some, those'll be untouchable given their asking price – which is where Sony's brand new yet cheaper WH-CH720N come into play. Because despite their more affordable price tag, these over-ear headphones feature one major audio upgrade that's plucked directly from the pricier WH-1000XM5 model.

I'm talking about the WH-CH720N's use of Sony's A1 chip. That's important because it provides the brains to the 720N's active noise-cancelling (also known as ANC) technology, just in the way the superb WH-1000XM5 take advantage of this little processor. That ought to mean epic isolation of sound and the drowning out of unwanted ambient sound from the world around.

Sony WH-CH720N headphones

(Image credit: Sony)

That's not all, though, with Sony including its DSEE technology in the WH-CH720N headphones too. Yes, I know, yet another acronym. It stands for Digital Sound Enhancement Engine, though, and is Sony's way of taking compressed audio and upscaling it to sound even better. It's used in many of the company's headphones and does a really good job. Better still, you needn't think about a thing: it just works its magic in the background. 

When it comes to sound the WH-CH720N can be paired with the Sony mobile app, which features pre-sets for graphic equalisation (EQ) so you can tune a sound to your personal preference. So whether you want a podcast voice-foremost or underground bass-enhanced hit to your listening, it's all available here. 

Available in white, blue or black finishes, the Sony WH-CH720N look classy, not like a pair of over-ear headphones that cost a mere £129/€159. That's more than half the price of the WH-1000XM5 but with portions of the same technology helping to assure they're a savvy bargain. I'm certainly keen to take a listen when they go on sale this March...

Mike Lowe
Tech Editor

Mike is the Tech Editor at He's been writing about consumer technology for 15 years and, as a phones expert, has seen hundreds of handsets over the years – swathes of Android devices, a smattering of iPhones, and a batch of Windows Phone too (remember those?). But that's not all, as a tech and audio aficionado his beat at T3 also covers tablets, laptops, gaming, home cinema, TVs, speakers and more – there's barely a tech stone unturned he's not had a hand on. Previously the Reviews Editor at Pocket-lint for 10 years, he's also provided work for publications such as Wired, The Guardian, Metro, and more. In addition to his tech knowledge, Mike is also a flights and travel expert, having travelled the globe extensively. You'll likely find him setting up a new mobile phone, critiquing the next MacBook, all while planning his next getaway... or cycling somewhere.