Best Creative SXFI Air Black Friday – Imagine putting on headphones and hearing the sound like from a high-end multi-speaker system in the recording studio or as in nature; with the original, realistic depth and immersive level of detail that such an environment brings with it. That sounds damn innovative. And that’s exactly what Creative promises us with its Super X-Fi technology. This wants to make what you call “holographic sound” possible for everyone. At a price of around 160 euros that sounds almost too good to be true.
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Best Creative SXFI Air Black Friday And Cyber Monday Sales & Deals 2022
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Best Creative SXFI Air Black Friday Review
Time for a change?
Creative wants to have solved a huge problem with the Super X-Fi technology: the – as they call it – “one-dimensional, cramped sound stage, in which the sound is caught unnaturally in our heads as soon as we wear headphones. Because in terms of sound technology, this approach should be wrong – good headphone sound is a mistake in thinking. ”That sounds like heavy tobacco at first, but there is something to it, because everyone hears the sound“ out there ”differently, important parameters are not just the individual ear shape but also your own field of vision. Of course, this cannot be taken into account when listening via headphones, which changes the sound image. However, one should not forget that we hear differently even under our headphones.
But how does Creative want to solve this problem now? Not like other manufacturers try with hearing tests and measurements, but with a facial scan. That’s the first thing to do if you want to use the SXFI as intended. The ears and face must first be snapped using the free app. A tip on the side: It’s easier and faster for two. Of course, it must also be sufficiently bright so that appropriate analyzes can be carried out.
The app management
In principle, the app is self-explanatory, even if there is no German localization. There is not much to do here either: in addition to the photo function, the log-in, and the setup wizard, we also find a selection of headphones from other manufacturers. This should make it possible to use the hearing profile on other headphones. But then you need the SXFI Amp, a headphone amplifier for Android smartphones.
If you still value fine-tuning, you can finally activate the equalizer and choose between five presets or simply put together your favorite frequency curve yourself. Oh yes: there is also a music player in the app, which unfortunately does not work with an iPhone 6 and iPad 2017 in the test with its own playlists. Therefore, when starting the app for the first time, you should prohibit it from being allowed to access the music library, because that caused us to crash it immediately. Activating them later in the iOS system settings unfortunately did not change anything.
To make the whole thing a little more confusing, there is a second app (Mac, Windows, iOS, Android) that is called “SXFI AIR Control”. The bottom line, however, is that it only offers two essential functions that are tailored to the SXFI Air: only with this can the color of the LED rings on the headphones be adjusted and a firmware update (only via USB) carried out. Of course, the Super X-Fi sound and an EQ can also be activated, but why the app has to be connected to the creative listener every time it is called up again, e.g. when unlocking the iPhone, is beyond me.
However, we are not discouraged and put the over-ear on our eavesdroppers. At just under 340 grams, the SXFI Air is not lightweight, but with all the technology in it, it’s no wonder. Its weight is hardly noticeable in itself. But what is striking is its rather high contact pressure. After only 30 minutes I had to give my ears a break. There is nothing wrong with the workmanship: The SXFI Air is made clean, even if plastic is the predominant material of choice.
In addition to the power button, there is also the Bluetooth switch, the Super X-FI switch, a microSD card slot (playback for MP3, WMA, WAV, and FLAC), and a mini microphone on the left ear cup. Thanks to the touch-field in it; calls can be accepted or rejected, Tracks become louder and quieter and skip back and forth. All other touch gestures always worked perfectly on our test device and without too long waiting times.
Creative has nicely solved the connection options, because the over-ear can not only be operated via Bluetooth (version 4.2, unfortunately only with the SBC codec), but also with an analog mini jack cable – very traditionally – or via USB-C-to-A -Electric wire.
A female voice informs us in a friendly manner about the connection; the Bluetooth button also allows switching sources between Bluetooth, USB, and microSD card operation.
How is the SXFI Air doing in the different categories “Music”, “Film” and “Game”? First, we test the over-ear with our Spotify playlist. He works through it quite neurally: the stage is not particularly staggered, but not so unusual for closed headphones. In principle, there is not so much to complain about when it comes to sound in normal operation; although what is initially noticeable is the background noise that could have been a little more subtle. This is not an issue for electronica pieces and loud rock/pop numbers; but the noise is noticeable when idling and with quiet passages, especially with classical pieces.
We switch: How is the Super X-Fi technology doing with its holographic sound? The first auditory impression is almost a little disturbing; because a lot of it sounds diffuse at first, so somehow foggy and overcast. You quickly notice that not all pieces are suitable for SFX-i mode. In some rap tracks, the bass is heavily reduced; while in the case of other bass bombers, the lower frequency range is literally pulled wide by opening the virtual stage. In general; it can be said that this technique is always reminiscent of a kind of live performance or jam session in a recording studio.
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