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Sony Pulse Explore Earbuds Review

Sony's PlayStation 5-Optimized Wireless Earbuds: Pulse Explore Preview

Sony is gearing up to launch its inaugural true wireless earbuds designed specifically for the PlayStation 5, hitting the shelves next month at a price of $199.99.


During the past few days of testing, the Pulse Explore earbuds have showcased their prowess, providing lossless, ultra-low-latency audio through Sony's new PlayStation Link wireless protocol.

When used with devices like PS5, PC, or Mac, a USB dongle is required for connectivity. Notably, Sony has seamlessly integrated PlayStation Link support into its new PlayStation Portal handheld streaming device.

The Pulse Explore earbuds offer versatility with support for traditional Bluetooth. Interestingly, users can simultaneously enjoy audio over PS Link and Bluetooth, enabling seamless multitasking like taking phone calls or listening to music on their phones during intense gaming sessions.

With planar magnetic drivers, a distinctive feature compared to typical dynamic drivers, the Pulse Explore aims to deliver soundscapes with ultra-low distortion, providing rich details and deep, clear bass that align with the intentions of game developers.

In terms of controls, the back-mounted volume controls may take some practice. In early experiences, clarity and separation emerged as notable strengths.

Even in chaotic gaming moments, the earbuds excel in distinguishing small details and individual sound effects.

Surprisingly comfortable despite their thickness, the Pulse Explore earbuds feature an identical design for both earbuds, each equipped with a volume rocker and PlayStation Link button. Sony includes four sets of silicone ear tips to cater to various ear sizes.

Despite the absence of active noise cancellation, Sony emphasizes noise rejection through two built-in microphones utilizing AI to eliminate ambient noise during multiplayer sessions.

With a battery life rated at five hours of continuous playback and an additional 10 hours from the charging case, the Pulse Explore earbuds offer the convenience of dual audio sources.

Compatible with PS5, PC, Mac, and mobile hardware, these earbuds also seamlessly work with the Nintendo Switch, providing detailed sound during gameplay when the PlayStation Link dongle is connected via a USB-C adapter.

As more time is spent with these wireless earbuds, a comprehensive evaluation will follow.

So far, the Pulse Explore leaves a positive impression, standing out in the gaming headphone landscape for those seeking a smaller, lighter form factor with native PlayStation 5 integration.


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