Sony NW-WS413 Walkman review

Sony NW-WS413 Walkman review

The Sony Walkman NW-WS413 are the greatest swimming headphones available based only on sound quality. Although the lack of Bluetooth and the necessity to drag and drop MP3s to its 4GB storage will upset some, the Walkman’s exceptional waterproof build quality and great underwater sound help it triumph in water.


  • Waterproof design
  • 12-hour battery life
  • Exceptional build quality


  • There is no Bluetooth option.
  • Access to MP3s is required.
  • In-ear fitting is not for everyone.

Two minute review

When it comes to serious swimming, the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 is one of the finest waterproof headphones alternatives. Swimming is one of the finest activities you can do since it develops muscle, burns fat, enhances lung capacity, and is easy on the joints, yet extended periods of swimming lengths are boring.

If you’re the type of person who needs to be entertained while exercising, or if you’d want to listen to your favorite podcast while swimming, the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 is for you.

It’s a one-of-a-kind and good-value gadget that foregoes Bluetooth – which doesn’t work well underwater – in favor of drag-and-drop MP3s to its 4GB storage.

Although the lack of a Bluetooth option severely restricts its adaptability, we believe it outperforms the Shokz OpenSwim, Naenka Runner Diver, and Zygo Solo in crucial areas.


  • Waterproof standard: IPX68
  • Battery life: 12 hours
  • Storage: 4GB or 8GB
  • Audio formats: MP3, AAC, WMA and Linear PCM
  • Weight: 32g

Price and release date of Sony NW-WS413 Walkman 

  • US$98 (UK£79/AU$209)
  • Available now

The Sony Walkman NW-WS413 has been around for approximately ten years, as its unusual design attests. It was formerly the sole choice for swimmers looking for some aquatic auditory excitement.

It’s always been two earpieces at either end of a sturdy cabled neckband, but this current iteration employs textured plastic. It makes it a bit simpler to reach the playback buttons, which are only accessible by touch owing to the design.


  • All-in-one design
  • Multiple playback buttons Stores 4GB audio files
  • 4/5 for design.

The Sony Walkman NW-WS413 fits perfectly, although it’s not exactly attractive. They’re a tangle in a gym bag, but they’re far more durable than they appear at first glance. You may be rough with them. but we wonder whether they need a tiny bag or possibly a battery cover. Which is now very normal for earbuds.

Bone conduction earbuds that are waterproof. The neckband keeps neatly in position on the back of the head with the rather heavier earpieces installed. The eartips may swap out for a selection of three in the box, but once done, they provide a barrier to the outer world – and to water – and the neckband holds everything in place.

The earpieces include a rather comprehensive selection of buttons. It’s a little intimidating at first, but all of the buttons are well-placed, and it doesn’t take long to figure out where they are merely by touch. It’s certainly too many buttons for such a little device, but it’s better than having to memorize long lists of double, triple, and quadruple pushes to execute simple functions, as some competing goods need.

Sony NW-WS413 Walkman


  • A sufficiently loud loudness
  • MP3, AAC, WMA, and Linear PCM files with a balanced soundscape
  • 4/5 for performance

The Sony Walkman NW-WS413 waterproof headphones provide the highest sound quality available. The sound enhances when you get in the water, just like bone conduction earbuds. They do, however, offer three distinct benefits than waterproof bone conduction earphones: they are louder, the sound quality is significantly better, and you do not need to insert extra earplugs (as you do with waterproof bone conduction headphones).

While bone conduction earbuds produce a bassy but somewhat muffled sound that is frequently too quiet in the pool, the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 is louder and has a considerably more detailed soundstage. We’re talking about dramatically better treble highs and a more pricey mid-range, despite the fact that the ()swimming-specific) earbuds have a super-slim membrane to keep water out. All of this matters a lot for music, but not so much for podcasts and audiobooks.

Performance cont’d

However, the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 aren’t the best-sounding headphones you’ll ever own. Swimming pools are harsh environments for ears, and they cope well with the water lapping and splashing at your ears while you swim. However, not perfectly. A swimming pool is not the place to listen to an audiobook if you don’t want to miss a single word or sentence.

There is a “ambient sound” setting that allows more of the outside sound in – albeit not by much – but severely reduces battery life. With it turned off, the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 lasts roughly 12 hours, which is excellent. With that type of battery life, you’re likely to forget to recharge them, but the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 has a trick up its sleeve: a fast-charge option means only three minutes on that vexing charger connection will bring you 60 minutes of usage. It takes 90 minutes to charge completely.

The Sony Walkman NW-WS413 does have one flaw, and that is its lack of adaptability. Sure, you could make the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 your gym-plus-pool headphones by wearing them while running on a treadmill or lifting weights, but they don’t offer a Bluetooth option. The Sony Walkman NW-WS413 is a one-trick pony without the option to tether to a smartphone. That is similar to its main rival, the Shokz OpenSwim bone conduction headphones, but not to the newcomer Naenka Runner Diver bone conduction earphones, which provide both a Bluetooth mode on land and an MP3 mode in water.


  • 4GB of storage (8GB also available)
  • 12 hours of battery life IP65/IP68 water resistance
  • 3/5 for features

Is Bluetooth available? Nope, it doesn’t. It’s just a Walkman with 4GB of storage (for 8GB head for the slightly pricier NW-WS414). Yes, that is vexing. After all, who still has a large MP3 collection? Podcasts are the most likely source of audio downloads in practice.

The Sony Walkman NW-WS413 is designed for use in swimming pools and meets the waterproof and dust-proof IP65/IP68 standard, but it will also function in seawater for 30 minutes. As a result, you may use the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 for almost any outdoor activity, from a simple swim in a lake to a triathlon. Except, due of the way they function, you probably can’t use them in contests. The Sony Walkman NW-WS413, like any other pair of the finest earphones for running, employs earbuds that isolate your ear canals from outside noise. Some race organizers believe this is unsafe, hence the surge in bone conduction earbuds.

The charging cradle on the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 is something we despise. Despite being inconvenient to use and difficult to transport, meaty specialized chargers specific to earbuds are becoming all too ubiquitous. While we despise them all, we can see why a waterproof device like the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 need one; the charger connects via five gold connections, which makes more sense for waterproofing than a USB-C port.

You best not lose the cradle since it serves as the single access point to the 4GB internal storage of the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 player. The Sony Walkman NW-WS413 appears as a drive when connected by USB 2.0 to a PC or Mac, making it simple to drag and drop MP3, AAC, WMA, and Linear PCM files.

Value for money 

  • mid-range option
  • largest manufacturer of waterproof headphones
  • Score for value for money: 4/5

While not particularly inexpensive, the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 offers decent value when compared to other high-quality waterproof swimming headphones.

The Zygo Solo costs $299/£218 (about AU$400) and the Shokz OpenSwim bone conduction headphones cost $149.95/£139.95/$219.95AU. The Sony Walkman NW-rivals WS413’s are tiny companies that provide more affordable, basic items.

Should I buy this waterproof headphones? 


You go swimming a lot.

Although this might potentially be used for a variety of outdoor sports, its absence of Bluetooth means you’ll likely just ever use them in the pool. Therefore, you need already be a committed swimmer to justify purchasing them.

You respect music of high caliber.

There are waterproof earbuds that are more inexpensive and more costly, but none produce music as well as the Sony Walkman NW-WS413. Outside of the pool, its balanced soundstage isn’t the finest you’ll ever hear, but in the water, it sounds superior than rival goods.


You are not a computer owner.

It is necessary to connect the Sony Walkman NW-WS413 to a PC or Mac in order to transfer MP3s and other files to its 4GB of storage. Therefore, if you don’t own a computer, you’re stuck.

You wish to stop using micro USB connections.

The micro USB connection, which was long since replace by USB-C, is used on the USB cable that connects to the cradle. You must bring a micro USB cable and the Sony Walkman NW-charging WS413’s cradle when you travel with it.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How can I link my phone to my Sony Walkman NW-WS413?

Utilizing the Bluetooth feature
Put your Bluetooth device and Walkman player in pairing mode. Activate Bluetooth on an Android Walkman player by turning it on.
When the Bluetooth device’s name displays on the Walkman player’s screen, choose it. The connection will finish and a message will display to indicate this.

2. How can I put music on my Sony Walkman earbuds?

Open the folder containing the tracks you wish to move on your computer. The music may be added to the Content Transfer program by dragging and dropping them from the place. When you can let go of the mouse button and drop the files, an orange box will signal you to do so. Your Walkman player will be updated with the new tracks.

3. Is Spotify compatible with Sony Walkman?

However, a common query among Spotify users is “Can Sony Walkman play Spotify?” The reply is affirmative, but not via the Spotify app. Spotify requires a device that can run a Spotify application and is connected to the internet. The Sony Walkman is not listed as compatible. Don’t wait. try it with Spotify too

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