Sony WF-1000XM3 review: true wireless noise canceling headphones

Can true wireless headphones be cool noise canceling headphones with good sound? Check in

Sony WF-1000XM3 review.

What is it?

Sony WF-1000XM3 - a headset in the true wireless form factor with a long working time and with active noise reduction that adjusts to the user's hearing and the environment.

What do they look like and what is included in the package?

Sony WF-1000XM3 is a pair of rather weighty (8.5 each) for its form factor of dynamic vacuum headphones. For comparison, AirPods Pro weigh 5.4 g each.

Presented in black and silver (but onimages it looks like white) color. Our review was black. The logo and microphone finish are made of a beautiful copper shade. In my opinion, they look a lot more expensive than those Apple headphones. In addition to the logo and ear designation, there is still so much marking on them, as if the creators wanted to leave a letter on them to descendants in encrypted form.

On each earphone two microphones fit, andon the front part - also a touch control panel. She is very sensitive. It works even through locks of hair and sometimes by accident when you need to fix the earpiece in your ear. And also very glossy and at some angles of illumination fingerprints are visible on it.

Since the headphones are quite weighty, it’s importantchoose the right size of the nozzles and find the optimal position in the ear, otherwise they will fall out. I dealt with the first quickly. Four silicone pairs and three foam couples are included. Only the smallest silicone ones approached me, the foam ones did not fit everything - either too small and fell out due to size, or too large and slipped out when straightened in the ear.

To find the correct position in the ear, it is betterFollow the instructions on the box. Moreover, they need not only to be inserted into the ear in the correct way (with the logo towards the face), but it is also important to scroll inside. Otherwise, they will fall out and the sound will go not quite where it should be. Even in the correct position, the headphones still fall out from time to time, in 90% of cases - if you touch your hood or hand while straightening your hair, they stick out of your ear. And this is definitely not an option for sports and other excessive physical activity. Walking, driving, in transport such as metro, train, plane - their ideal use case.

Like other models in their class, these gotincluded case with charging. It is made of plastic and consists of two parts. The main one is made of black plastic, the lid is made of painted the same color as the logo on the headphones themselves. The paint quickly erases, especially if worn in a bag with keys and looks after a few weeks at all not luxury. And he’s also big.

Inside the headphones are mounted on magnets, soeven if you open the box and turn it over, they will not fall out. It opens with a pleasant characteristic click. One of those little things that allow you to feel that in the hands of a non-budget device.

How to use them?

There is an NFC module on the case, so there is no difficulty with the connection. Sony has an application for controlling the WF-1000XM3, but in principle you can do without it.

By default, the WF-1000XM3 works with noise reduction, andtouch buttons on both sides control playback. To pause / start playback - one click to switch the track forward - two, back - three to call an intelligent assistant (by the way, Samsung, for example, offers two to choose from, Google and Bixby) - long press. If you remove the earphone from your ear, playback will stop, but it can be started manually (or you can cancel this disconnection in the application settings). By the way, if you get both, then the music will play again and will play until you turn it off or hide it in a case.

The application is needed to fine-tune the workequalizer or noise reduction for yourself and change the functions for the controls. For example, you can assign noise reduction mode control to one of the panels. Sony has as many as 18 of them! You can configure modes for walking, running, transport.

I was initially completely comfortable withdefault, probably because there was no particular need for the application. After installation, I tested other modes. For example, you can muffle voices or the sound of vehicles more / less. Surely there are users whose lifestyle will require such fine-tuning, but I chose to leave the noise reduction at maximum and just listen to music more quietly. Then, especially loud sounds are still audible and you can react to them, but the load on the hearing is less.

The noise canceler is really noticeable, especiallyafter you turn it off. You can also enable adaptive mode of operation in the application. In this mode, the headphones listen to the environment and independently change the settings of the noise reduction system to the sounds around. At the time of switching, the sound disappears briefly. At first it seemed interesting to me, then the loss of sound every 10-15 minutes (and this happened when changing transport, walking, being indoors) started to get angry and I just turned it off.

What is not provided by the controls is the volume control, and this is quite inconvenient. All the same, you have to get your smartphone out of your pocket from time to time.

It seemed to me that the most cosmic function inWith these Sony headphones, you can enjoy 360 Reality Audio. To configure it, the application asks to photograph the user's ears and send it to the server for processing. They say that they adjust the sound individually under the auricle of the headset owner! One problem - the function only works with and 360 by Deezer applications. Both with a paid subscription. So it was not possible to test it.

The application displays the charge status foreach earphone. Perhaps this is logical given the fact that they can be listened separately. It is interesting that when you press the playback control button on one of the headsets, the sound signal is sent to it and the reaction begins with it. It seems a trifle, but it works on the perception of the model.

What is the sound?

Sony WF-1000XM3 equipped with Bluetooth 5.0 (A2DP, AVRCP, HFP, HSP). There is support for AAC and SBC, but aptX, LDAC and LHDC are not. I used them with OPPO Reno2 and Samsung Galaxy A50 smartphones (both come with Bluetooth 5.0).

In the application, you can select the priority of qualitysound or headphone jack. I chose the sound. There was no problem with the stability of sound transmission with OPPO Reno2, but there were a lot of problems with the Galaxy A50, especially when the smartphone was in a down jacket pocket or in a bag worn on a down jacket. Sometimes it’s like behind a concrete wall at the other end of the apartment. By the way, the Galaxy A50 had stability problems with the OPPO Enco Q1 headset. Therefore, it seems to me that this is more likely a lack of a smartphone than a headset. Switching to connection priority mode helped to get rid of it.

Despite the fact that wireless technologyToday they allow you to transmit sound fairly high quality, any true wireless-headphones - this is still a solution not for the music lover. Sony WF-1000XM3 - a headset, rather for the sake of style, convenience and technology, it does not have such a large assortment of supported codecs .. Corrected for this, I can not find fault with sound quality. I liked that the sound in them is quite clean, there is volume, the bass is felt (I don’t like a lot of bass, it was enough for me that this model can, for complete happiness).

Compare with Apple Earphones, unfortunatelythere was no possibility. At hand were only my usual wired earphones-earplugs at the price of about 800 UAH and a wireless headset with noise reduction from OPPO. Shumodav here works better. Sony also has a more interesting sound, but you cannot directly compare them at all - different price categories (Enco Q1 are half the price) and form factor. Compared to my fairly budget, though wired headphones, the sound is also more interesting. The work of the equalizer is noticeable, although I preferred to stay in the default mode, because when I “pulled” the top or bottom, the sound became so sharper, typical for wireless headsets.

The volume margin of the Sony WF-1000XM3 is large. I often listen to music close to the maximum of possibilities, but here it was limited to about 50%. With rare exceptions, for example, the metro, where the sound of the train erupts a little, then the sound was twisted up to 70%. But they are still much better in them than without or with other headphones without noise reduction. On the street you can only hear when the car has come very close and at a good speed. It seems to me that this is also part of the work of the algorithms, they could “cut” this noise more strongly, but the application states that the headphones leave a sound that is considered important. If there is no busy traffic nearby, then it seems that the world around does not exist - such silence.

You can also use the Sony WF-1000XM3 as a headset. They cope normally, I can’t say that there were any problems or discomfort. The interlocutors also did not complain.

How is the battery?

The manufacturer promises up to 6 hours of headsetand up to 18 - even from charging in the case. The charge status can be viewed in the application or listened to when headphones are connected. The case is charged using a USB Type-C cable (included). As for autonomy, it is difficult to measure it in this format. It turned out that I charged the headphones a little less than a couple of times a week. In 99% of cases, she listened with noise reduction. Usually I listen to music on the road, usually from one and a half to four hours a day. Rarely at home, but it happens when I cook, about half an hour. It was not possible to put the headphone battery in a day without using the recharging in the case for one simple reason - they are too easy to lose, so every time I took off the headphones, I immediately put them into the case. The case, by the way, can be recharged separately.

What other options are there?

The closest competitor is Apple AirPods Pro. According to the technical characteristics, the models are almost identical, the Apple headset can also adapt to the ear, it offers several modes of noise reduction, it works the same. The last joke, of course. We survived until the days when to buy Sony - this means saving a little, the price of this model in official retail is 7500 UAH. AirPods Pro - 8000 UAH.

If true wireless isn’t important to you,As the reliability of the mount is paired with noise reduction, you can pay attention to the good old format of Bluetooth headsets with a mount on the neck. For example, we liked Sony WI-C600N - a headset-collar with a price tag of 3000 UAH. However, also not a budget pleasure.

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In the dry residue

Sony WF-1000XM3 - an expensive toy, but in thiscase, the price is justified by the manufacturability of the device. Despite the weight and size, the headphones turned out to be quite comfortable in life, although not for all scenarios (in winter in hoods and caps, as well as in sports training, this will be a so-so solution) and they have practically no alternatives on the market, except for recently presented ones Apple Headphones (we already have a review of AirPods Pro).

3 reasons to buy Sony WF-1000XM3:

  • long battery life;
  • excellent operation of the noise reduction system;
  • large volume margin and good sound quality;

2 reasons not to buy Sony WF-1000XM3:

  • you need headphones for sports including;
  • price factor.

Key Specifications of the Sony WF-1000XM3 Headphone

8.5 g each

Emitter Design and Diameter
dynamic, 6 mm

Frequency range
20 - 20000 Hz

106 ± 3 dB

NFC, Bluetooth 5.0 A2DP, AVRCP, HFP, HSP

noise reduction, ambient (listening to ambient sounds)

Declared battery life
up to 6 hours in music playback mode with noise reduction / up to 8 hours without noise reduction + 18 hours of charging case

Contents of delivery
USB-C charging cable, three sets of silicone ear pads, three sets of foam, storage and charging case

Sony WF-1000XM3

True wireless noise canceling headset

True wireless noise canceling headset,which adapts to the environment. Among the advantages are the form factor, battery life (up to a day, taking into account recharging in the case), high-quality sound. Disadvantages - the price factor (typically high for this class of devices) and the fact that it does not fit all usage scenarios, which is also due to the form factor

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