Sony MDR-W10 Dynamic Headphones

Sony MDR-W10

The Sony MDR-W10 is a rare pair of headphones, but not so rare that you will not find them at all. Since their introduction during the 10th Walkman anniversary, they have become a collectable item.

These headphones came in two colours, yellow and black. The yellow version came with the “Sports” range of their Walkman, which had a yellow colour theme. These headphones are very similar to the MDR-W15 in terms of sound reproduction and design.


The turbo range was supposed to have the capability to produce more bass and they certainly do that. In comparison, their sound quality is still much better than some of the top-end products I have heard.

This very light pair of headphones gives a distinctive 1980s feel to the sound but with extra bass and treble. If you are one of those people who never got used to the modern marshmallow type of design that you have to stuff right into your ears then this model is the next best thing. It is a shame that they do not manufacture these today. I thought it was the best design.


Vintage Headphones

These are often available in the second hand market such as eBay and their price can vary and go all the way to the ten-pound range. There are some important things to look out for when buying. The wires were extremely delicate and strain to them usually rendered one side inoperable. Since the drive units are sealed, it is a near impossible job to open them to solder new replacement wires.

These were very popular due to the sound, and if memory serves, back then, there were some fake headphones from the Far East, which appeared identical but provided average sound.


Decade of Manufacture1980s
Manufacturing OriginJapan
TypeMoving coil dynamic
Driver Units13.5 mm diameter
MagnetNdFeB (Neodymium)
Membrane TypePlastic
Upper frequency response24 kHz (approx) **
Lower frequency response7 Hz (approx) **
Impedance18 Ω

** Using a standard 20 Hz to 20 kHz headphone as a baseline for comparison, however you should note that frequency perception can be very subjective.