Today we are testing the Creative Zen Hybrid Wireless Over-ear Headphones, the new headset from Creative, a name known in the enthusiast audio department. Come check it out!
Find your gateway to serenity and personal privacy with the Creative Zen Hybrid!
Featuring Hybrid Active Noise Cancellation for a more peaceful time and Ambient Mode when you need to be aware of your surroundings, get your much needed reprieve as and when you need them.
This pair of over-ear headphones is the perfect combination of versatility and performance—wireless or wired, outdoors or indoors—and is fitted a noise-cancelling microphone that can handle any impromptu calls. To top it off, its long-lasting battery life of up to 27 hours even with ANC enabled also means you can power through an entire day without distractions.
The Zen Hybrid is the newest professional headset from Creative, and one that could replace your current headset. It is built with high-quality plastic, an adjustable head mount and each side have a 40 mm Neodymium driver. The over-ear piece is made with synthetic leather, and the headset can be folded in 3 different ways depending on how you want to use it. You can also fold it into the included carrying case.
Having used it for a week before writing my impressions, I can say that the sound from this headset is really crisp, giving us the best possible sound for the source material. I have used it over remote working in meetings, and the microphone embedded in the headset sounds great.
– ANC, which stands for Active Noise Cancellation , allows you to be completely immersed by cutting the outside noise with the simple press of the ANC button on the headset. Even with ANC off, the headphones were already better at noise canceling than my previous headset.
– Ambient Mode, activated by pressing the ANC button twice, is the exact opposite of ANC and uses the microphones on the headset to propagate the ambient sound to your ears. Your significant other wants to chat with you? No need to remove the headset since you can keep it on and activate Ambient Mode to be able to have a conversation. I LOVED this feature since it’s very convenient.
The battery is great and can last you a full work week – 37 hours – in standard mode. With ANC or Ambient Mode enabled, the battery will last you around 27 hours. A quick 5-minute charge will provide you with up to 5 hours of use. A full charge takes between 2 to 3 hours over USB-C (USB-A to USB-C cable included). Take note that the Bluetooth connection will drop if you connect the cable when you are listening to music.
– Bluetooth: 5.0
– 3.5mm analog connector
– Codecs: AAC / SBC
– Creative SFXI: download the app on your phone and you can listen to your playlist with the added layer of SFXI sound processing.
I listened to a good chunk of my library over Bluetooth, and the quality was pretty impressive as is, and even more so with the SFXI app! I tried the included analogic 3.5mm connector to hear the music wired, and it was then I noticed I hadn’t realized how far behind analog technology had gotten over the years since I’ve been exclusively using Bluetooth connectivity for about four years. Bottom line: 3.5mm connectivity is included, but this audio technology is now far behind Bluetooth in terms of sound quality.
I tested the range, along with the Creative BT-W3 that we reviewed a few months ago, and I was able to get outside of my house without any signal loss, which is way farther than my other headset allows for.
The Creative Zen Hybrid is a solid headset, and I just love it. It has replaced my previous work headset for remote working, and switching between ANC and Ambient Mode depending on the situation was amazing – and a killer feature for me. Add to this between 27 hours and 37 hours of autonomy, depending on your usage, and for just shy of $100, this is a headset that you should seriously consider.
Creative Zen Hybrid Package and Contents
1 x Creative Zen Hybrid
1 x Carry Pouch
1 x 3.5 mm AUX-in Cable
1 x USB-C to USB-A Cable (for charging)
Quick Start Guides
You can purchase your Creative Zen Hybrid Wireless Over-ear Headphones right here (MSRP $98.99).
This Creative Zen Hybrid Wireless Over-ear Headphones unit is based on an article provided by Creative.