Panasonic has joined the super competitive TWS headphones scene, with the company releasing two new models—the first TWS earbuds from the company. The RZ-S500W and the RZ-S300W have been announced for European markets, with prices starting at GBP109 (~RM589) for the more affordable RZ-S300W and GBP169 (~RM913) for the ANC-enabled RZ-S500W.
The more premium RZ-S500W features something called Dual Hybrid Noise Cancelling Technology, which is basically a combination of FeedForward Noise Cancelling (FF-NC), Feedback Noise Cancelling (FB-NC) and analog/digital processing to reduce the ambient noise in different settings.
Panasonic says that their flagship model has “industry-leading” noise cancellation, which pits the RZ-S500W against other leading noise cancelling earbuds in the market today—namely, the AirPods Pro and Sony’s WF-1000XM3. Meanwhile, Panasonic has also included an ambient sound mode, which means that users will be able to hear the sounds of an environment with a simple tap of the finger.
The more affordable model, the RZ-S300W doesn’t have noice cancelling tech, although they offer a different strength: size. At just 17mmm, the earbuds are roughly the size of a coin, so if you’re looking for a TWS option that isn’t too conspicuous, this could have some potential.
And if you’re planning to use your earbuds to make calls, Panasonic says that both models provide “excellent” quality for calls. This is achieved by MEMS microphones, along with a “labryinth” scructure to help compensate for external noises like the wind. Meanwhile, both models are IPX4 splash-proof rated, so you shouldn’t have any issues wearing them during workouts, or even light rain.
Battery life estimates are also fairly impressive. According to Whathifi, you’ll get 7.5 hours from a single charge on the RZ-S300W and a total of 30 hours, while the RZ-S500W loses out in this department: 6.5 hours on a single charge and 19.5 hours in total including the charging case. And if you’re already embedded into the Amazon smart ecosystem, Alexa is already supported as a voice assistant.
It appears that both models are only available in Europe right now, although a U.S. launch could be in the works. For now, we’ll have to wait and see—although at around RM900, it will be interesting to see if Panasonic’s debut TWS earbuds can take on the dominant forces in the market.