Sony LinkBuds S Promise ANC And All-Day Comfort

Three months after Sony launched its rather strange-looking earbuds, simply called Sony LinkBuds, the company has followed up with the launch of a new product called LinkBuds S. Unlike its unconventional-looking first-generation sibling, the LinkBuds S has a reassuringly familiar design. In fact, they share a lot of design traits with the company's more expensive, premium WF-1000XM4. The design traits of the LinkBuds S also make it evident that the product targets a broader audience than its LinkBuds predecessor.

Major changes to the design aside, the Sony LinkBuds S has one significant advantage over the original LinkBuds: Active Noise Cancelation support. However, its main claim to fame is Sony's assertion that these are the smallest and lightest noise-canceling Hi-Res Truly wireless headphones currently available. Along with an ergonomic design that Sony suggests will ensure comfort, Sony LinkBuds S earbuds also boast an ambient mode that lets users listen to external sounds when necessary.

Sony LinkBuds S: Features that matter

Even though Sony suggests LinkBuds S are the smallest in-ear wireless headphones, they have still managed to cram in reasonably sized 5mm drivers. For comparison, this is only slightly smaller than the 6mm drivers used on the WF-1000XM4.

The product also gets Sony's Integrated Processor V1 — the same chip we saw on the recently launched Sony WH-1000XM5. This chip claims to improve the overall sound quality of the product by reducing distortion and improving noise cancelation. Sony LinkBuds S earbuds also support "High-Resolution Audio Wireless" with LDAC as well as an autoplay feature that activates the moment users place the buds in their ears.

Sony's latest earbuds claim a battery life of up to six hours, with the supplied charging case further enhancing the playback time to 14 hours. When completely discharged, the LinkBuds S can be charged for five minutes to get an additional 60 minutes of playback time.

Another interesting feature on the LinkBuds S is support for the Niantic AR game "Ingress." Sony says LinkBuds S earbuds use sensor and spatial sound technology to combine a great visual and sonic experience. It's also suggested by Niantic that further integration with their Lightship platform should allow expanded functionality with LinkBuds earbuds soon.

Sony's LinkBuds S earbuds go on sale starting May 20, 2022, and come in two color options, White and Black, with a suggested retail price of 199.99. They will be available via, Amazon, and other authorized dealers. A third color option called "Ecru" is also set to be available as an exclusive release from Best Buy.