Many manufacturers are releasing true wireless earphones, and such audio devices are slowly conquering the world. However, they tend to have high costs for what they have to offer. Panasonic decided to compete with big names such as Apple and Sony by offering true wireless earphones with similar specs at lower prices. The Panasonic RZ-S500W is one such device with excellent specs and a noise-canceling feature. We've tested these earphones, we've made an impression, and we can tell you more about it in this review:
The Panasonic RZ-S500W is an excellent choice for those of you who:
- Want a pair of truly wireless earphones of good quality
- Desire excellent noise canceling
- Don't want to spend too much on similar earphones made by the likes of Apple or Sony
These are the best features of the Panasonic RZ-S500W:
- Excellent noise canceling features
- Great sound, especially on the low and mid audio frequencies
- Touch sensors that are responsive and work well
- Comfortable to wear regardless of the size of your ears
- A good microphone that delivers clear sound during phone calls
- Support for quick charging
- Good balance between price and quality
There are some downsides too:
- High audio frequencies are not very well represented
- Lack of AptX support (Android users don't get the same audio quality as iPhone users)
The Panasonic RZ-S500W proved to be some of the best true wireless earphones we've tried. They deliver excellent sound quality, good battery life, responsive touch controls, and top-notch noise canceling. The only thing that holds the Panasonic RZ-S500W back is the lack of support for aptX, which means that audio quality for Android users is not on par with what iPhone users get. Otherwise, they are an excellent buy for anyone who wants a superb pair of true wireless earphones.
The Panasonic RZ-S500W true wireless Bluetooth earphones come in a partially transparent, rectangular box. It's a design choice that lets you see the in-ear headphones and their charging case inside without opening the actual package.
Like on its front side, the back of the box gives you some details about the earphones and their features. However, the backside doesn't have the same transparent cutout - instead, you get to see a photo of the wireless earphones.
Inside the package, you find the wireless in-ear headphones, their charging case, a USB to USB-C cable, four additional different sized sets of earbuds (besides the medium-size ones that are already mounted on the earphones), some booklets with the manual (in different languages), and the warranty documents.
The Panasonic RZ-S500W true wireless Bluetooth earphones look like a product of excellent quality. They're delivered in a carefully designed package, stacked with everything you need.
The Panasonic RZ-S500W wireless earphones have a simple, yet attractive design. They're two pieces of round buds, each with an angled ear tip. Both have touch panels surrounded by grayish-white perforations that contrast their bodies' matte black color.
On the earphones' sides, Panasonic put its logo. Although the logo is visible when you're not wearing the earphones, you no longer see it when you put them in your ears.
There are many contacts near the ear tips and on the back of the earphones. Those are used for charging the earphones when you place them in their case.
Speaking of which, the charging case looks well made, but it's somehow hard to open. You're going to need to use both hands to do it, but that also means that it's not easy to open by accident. The earphones come with not one or two, but five different sets of ear tips. By default, the ones mounted on the earbuds are medium-sized. However, you can easily replace them with any of the other four sets, which cover all the possible ear sizes: XS, S, L, and XL.
Regarding the hardware specifications of the Panasonic RZ-S500W, here's what you should know:
The earphones use 8 mm (5/16 in) driver units. That's more than you usually see on truly wireless earphones, so they should provide you with better sound quality than most similar devices. However, what makes these earphones stand out of the crowd is their noise-canceling feature. The Panasonic RZ-S500W earphones come with Dual Hybrid Noise Cancelling, which, according to Panasonic, uses feedforward and feedback tech together with both digital and analog audio processing to remove unwanted noise around you.
To connect to your devices, Panasonic RZ-S500W uses Bluetooth 5.0 on the 2.4 GHz frequency band. The headphones support A2DP, AVRCP, HSP, and HFP profiles and the SBX and AAC audio codecs. Unfortunately, they don't support AptX, so Android users don't get the same audio quality as iPhone users.
The earphones can also be used in phone calls or any voice apps, thanks to their built-in microphone. It's a mono, MEMS microphone (Micro-Electro-Mechanical System) that Panasonic promises should reduce wind noise and transmit your voice clearly. Keep in mind, though, that the earphones don't have audio passthrough, so when talking over the microphone, your voice might sound muffled for yourself due to the noise-canceling feature. However, you should be very well heard on the other end by the person whom you're speaking with.
As these are wireless earphones, battery life is of the utmost importance. The technical specs tell us that each of them has its battery made of Lithium polymer running at 3.7 Volts and with a capacity of 85 mAh. That should allow the earphones to operate for approximately six and a half hours with noise canceling on and up to seven hours with noise canceling turned off.
Regarding charging times, the case has a battery of 800 mAh and supports quick charging. It can fully charge the earphones in approximately two hours and gives them about sixty to seventy minutes of operating time after just 15 minutes of charging. If you're wondering about how long it takes to charge the charging case, know that it takes about 2.5 hours if it's empty and about four hours if the earphones are plugged into it too.
Finally, the weight specs are as follows: each earphone weighs about 7 grams (0.25 oz), and the charging case weighs approximately 45 grams (1.6 oz).
For all the specs and features of the Panasonic RZ-S500W earphones, visit this webpage: RZ-S500W True Wireless Bluetooth Earphones with Dual Hybrid Noise Cancelling.
The design of the Panasonic RZ-S500W earphones is inspired yet straightforward, and the technical specs tell us they should deliver excellent audio quality no matter the circumstances.
The first thing to do when getting your pair of Panasonic RZ-S500W is to charge them. This activity took about an hour, which means that they already had some battery when we received them. The next time I charged them, it took about two hours, just as Panasonic advertised.
Pairing the earphones was easy at first, as all I had to do was take them out of the charging case to enter Bluetooth pairing mode. However, on the next devices I wanted to pair them with, it wasn't obvious how to do it. As I had found, I needed to first tap one of the earphones to turn it on and then press and hold for about seven seconds on its touch sensor.
Both earphones have touch sensors on them, and there are many gestures you can make to control what the earphones do. A tap on any of them turns them on or off, plays/pauses music, or accepts a call. Two and three taps on the left earphone change the volume, while a tap on the right earphone skips audio tracks while listening. Tapping and holding for about two seconds on the left one rejects phone calls or launches the voice assistant installed on your smartphone (Google Assistant, Siri) while doing the same on the right earphone switches noise canceling on or off.
Obviously, I wanted to check how the earphones deliver sound when listening to music. So, I connected the Panasonic RZ-S500W true wireless Bluetooth earphones to a few different devices and played different types of music. I used the earphones together with a Huawei P20 and a Xiaomi Redmi Note 8 Pro Android smartphone. The 8 mm drivers managed to offer excellent quality sound, especially when listening to trip-hop and pop music because they tend to emphasize low and mid frequencies. They did well on higher frequencies too, although they did seem to be a bit too soft for my taste. Nonetheless, they do sound good!
Speaking of the noise-canceling feature, it works very well. The earphones don't block all the noises around you, but they manage to muffle them at a respectable level, more than I've ever heard on similar true wireless earphones.
I also checked how these earphones fare in phone calls. Admittedly, the phone experience was pretty good. The people with whom I've talked heard me clearly, so the microphone does its job quite well. However, as I've mentioned earlier in this review, my voice seemed distant when speaking over the phone, as the earphones don't have audio passthrough.
In the end, I must say that I'm pleased by what the Panasonic RZ-S500W true wireless Bluetooth earphones have to offer. The audio quality is excellent, both when listening to music and in phone calls, and the noise-canceling feature works much better than I expected.
Now you know what to expect from the Panasonic RZ-S500W true wireless Bluetooth earphones. Do you like what they've got to offer? Are you considering buying a pair for yourself or someone else? Let us know your thoughts about the Panasonic RZ-S500W earphones in the comments section below.