Review Guide to 2nd gen Westone W-series, W10, W20, W40, W60, and W80

Westone BT v2 cable.

You can consider this as a mini-review inside of new W-series write up where I wanted to go over the spec and the differences between these Bluetooth wireless cables. Please keep in mind, the v1 cable is included with W10, W20, W40, and W60, and v2 cable is included with W80. In my testing and comparison of Westone BT cables, I was using W80 and SP1000 SS.

BT Cable v1 ($99.99, Westone, Amazon)

  • BT 4.0, CSR8645 chipset, aptX, 8hr battery life, IPX4 rated, includes charging cable, 1yr warranty.

BT Cable v2 ($149.99, Westone, Amazon)

  • BT 5.0, CSR8675 chipset, aptX HD, 8hr battery (up to 12hrs w/charging dock), IPX5 rated, includes charging cable and charging battery pack, 1yr warranty.

westone_bt_cable_v2-01

BT Cable v2 Impressions:

In v2 of BT Cable you will find a new voice prompt indicating power on/off, connection status, and pairing mode; all much clearer in comparison to simplified beep tones in v1. There is an audible beep with every volume click which provides a useful feedback when you push the button to change volume (vs long press to change the track), but the beep could also be a bit annoying while you are listening to music. Cable has a pre-shaped earhook at the connector, making it a lot more secure and comfortable to wear. To shield and protect mmcx connector from moisture and dust, connector housing has a slightly extended lip, making this cable compatible only with Westone IEMs (v1 connector housing is shorter and can be used universally with most of mmcx IEMs).

v2 charging case extends battery life and could be attached while wearing the cable. There is no longer a charging port with a rubber cover on the module, but at the same time you have to deal with a proprietary charging solution. Westone offers a separate charging kit which is a good idea to have when traveling or as a spare.

BT v2 vs v1 Sound Comparison:

The new v2 cable has a noticeably less background hissing noise when compared to v1. It’s not dead quiet and even with v1 it’s not as noticeable when music is playing, but when idling with no music you can hear the difference. The new v2 with aptX HD support has a fuller body sound with a more natural warmer tonality, while the original v1 with aptX sounds a little brighter and thinner in comparison. Either one is a very convenient option to cut the wires, so you can use Westone IEMs wireless.

westone_bt_cable_v2-12

When comparing wired vs wireless performance, I’m hearing aptX HD encoding to be closer to wired performance, especially since aptX has a lower sampling rate and higher compression (352kbps, 16bit/44.1kHz encoding) vs aptX HD (576kbps, 24bit/48kHz encoding). The only comment here, CSR8675 is capable of LDAC encoding, so I hope Westone will be able to figure out how to step up to LDAC in fw upgrade, if it’s feasible.

westone_bt_cable_v2-13

Page 3 – W10, W20, and W40.

Page 4 – W60, W80, and Conclusion.

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