Pros: Good wearing comfort, lightweight, isolating, mellow sound signature with clear mids
Cons: Blunted bass and treble, grain to the sound, not everyone likes J-cables
Along with the summary below, I have posted a Youtube review of the Sony XBA-1. If you like the video, please check out my channel for more reviews
The XBA-1 is very practically designed, with a narrow nozzle and a thoughtful selection of tip sizes with Sony's great hybrid tips. They are very lightweight and feel comfortable in the ear, but because they stick out they are not suitable for sleeping on your side with. Whether or not you like the J-cable is a preference thing.
The XBA-1 have a nice bell tone clarity in the mids for female vocals. However they lack a little extension in terms of both bass and treble, making them quite a mid-focused and mellow earphone. Bass is there but lacks authority and they also lack sparkle compared to many dynamic drivers around their price. However they are certainly have an enjoyable and pleasant tuning nonetheless.
I've seen these go on sale for around $20-$40 and for that price these make an comfortable and practical earphone. They would also make a great gift for anyone who was after something not tremendously fussy about audio quality, since they should be comfortable for almost anyone. There are dynamic drivers with better performance for the same price (ie: JVC FXD80) but if you are a fan of mids and mellow sounds this is a good option.