Sony WH-1000XM3: The Best Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones You Can Buy Right Now

Sony WH-1000XM3: The Best Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones You Can Buy Right Now

Do you consider yourself a serious music lover? Or perhaps you’re a self-confessed audio tech aficionado—someone who loves and collects only the finest and the most high-end consumer audio electronics that money can buy. Whichever the case, then you probably already have your heart set on the highly popular Sony WH-1000XM3 Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones.

Many critics and gadget websites have been showering this particular Sony offering with glowing reviews and stellar praise, which is always a good sign. However, mostly positive reviews of anything also tend raise some doubts. For instance, is the product in question actually as good as everyone says it is, or is it just a case of people joining the bandwagon and extolling the virtues of the latest iteration of an old favorite? That is exactly what we want to find out about Sony WH-1000XM3, so join us as we delve a little deeper into the specs and characteristics of one of Sony’s most popular products at the moment.

Sony WH-1000XM3: primary specs

  • Powerful HD Noise Cancelling Processor QN1 automatically handles noise cancellation and sound optimization
  • Signature Sony build quality, looks, and wearing comfort
  • Offers 30 hours of continuous playback time on a single charge
  • Charges through USB Type-C cable
  • Tough and durable aluminum-coated diaphragm
  • Ambient Sound and Quick Attention modes allow for safe outdoor listening
  • Atmospheric Pressure Optimization compensates for listening during air travel
  • Robust 4 to 40,000 Hz Frequency Response
  • Bluetooth 4.2 enabled for hands-free calling
  • Heavy-duty 40mm driver unit
  • Touch Sensor Volume Control enabled

Minimalist yet premium design

Let’s tackle how the Sony WH-1000XM3 looks first. If you’ve ever owned any of Sony’s WH-1000X series of headphones in the past, then you know what to expect here. In fact, you might consider this aspect as sort of a downside, because the 1000XM3 looks pretty much like its predecessor, the Sony WH-1000XM2, except that the newer pair of headphones feels a bit more “plasticky” than the older one because the metal band that bridges the cups is no longer visible on the headband. However, the good news is that the WH-1000XM3 feels lighter, and the design of the headband padding has been changed to make it a bit softer and more molded to your head. This allows for a more comfortable and flush fit, one that doesn’t protrude too much from your head once worn.

If this is your first rodeo with Sony’s premium headphone line, then what you’re in for is an understated kind of design that looks almost unexceptional from a distance. However, when you get up close and personal with the Sony WH-1000XM3, you see the tiny touches that reveal its true high-end status: the copper accents, the smooth flowing lines of the headband, and the elegantly curved cups that gently but firmly clamp onto your head. The subtle engraved Sony logo above each ear cup also contributes to this stealth-premium motif.

Build quality is also similar to its predecessor’s: solid, durable, and suitably reinforced in all the usual problem areas like the headband and the pivot points of both cups. However, WH-1000XM3 does things better as customers have reported that its headband is less prone to breakage compared to that of the WH-1000XM2.

We also noticed that the WH-1000XM3’s exterior feels a bit smoother to the touch than the WH-1000XM2’s, so that’s something to note. The leathery or mottled texture of the ear cups, in particular, has been replaced with a smooth finish, possibly to enhance the sensitivity of the touch sensor.

Superior sound quality

Now, let’s take a look at the performance of these cans. First off, newbies to this particular line of headphones will be amazed at using the WH-1000XM3 for the first time—and they should. It’s got a very nice treble, a muscular bass that doesn’t lose definition no matter how loud things get, and a really warm midrange that will make any soundtrack sing—overall, definitely and easily worth its asking price.

Experienced WH-1000XM series owners will be sort of disappointed, however, as this new iteration sounds remarkably similar to its predecessor in pretty much every way. In fact, it can almost be indistinguishable, if not for some very marginal improvements here and there. That being said, this isn’t a knock at the WH-1000XM3 at all, and it shouldn’t be considered as such, seeing as the WH-1000XM2 was, in fact, one of the very best headphones of its generation. It’s just that for now, Sony’s 1000XM headphones series already sound so good that the company is yet to outdo itself.

Marketing-accurate active noise cancelling performance

Where it does excel, however, is at noise cancelling. Now, according to Sony, the 1000XM3 is supposed to be four times better than its predecessor at cancelling noise for you to have a better listening experience. This would be thanks to the new QN1 HD Noise Cancelling Processor, a new addition to the series.

Is it true, then? Well, we’re very happy to say it is. These headphones are more than able to reduce and even eliminate background noise completely in a number of varied and realistic background noise scenarios. Whether it’s the rhythmic trundle of riding a train to the deep, guts-palpating drone you get while traveling via plane, the 1000XM3’s noise cancellation does a bang-up job of it. The same goes whether you’re in a room with loud music playing, or filled with people talking in reasonable volumes. In conclusion, this pair is definitely the best in noise-cancelling headphones we’ve ever encountered, even at its price point.

Excellent additional features

Of course, that’s not all that the 1000XM3 has to offer—it’s got a handful of really neat and very well-thought out features as well. First there’s Ambient Mode, which allows important noises such as announcements made over PA systems to be piped into your audio when they’re detected. Second is the really cool Quick Attention mode, which allows you to muffle your music and hear outside noise without even taking the headphones off.

You simply hold your hand over the right ear cup and the microphones set on the outside of each ear cup immediately activate to allow you to hear the outside world. This is perfect for when someone’s trying to get your attention or talking to you, letting you hear and respond to them before seamlessly getting back to your music-listening experience.

Speaking of the right ear cup, Sony has cleverly incorporated the WH-1000XM3’s playback controls there, right where the cover is. Engaging it is easy—simply swipe a fingertip to the right if you want to skip forward on your playlist, and left if you want to go back a track. Pause requires two taps, and the same goes for Play. Volume control also involves swiping up for a louder setting and down for quieter one. When you take all of these brilliant features alongside everything else the WH-1000XM3 offers, you get a clear picture on why it costs as much as it does.

Great battery life

Being a wireless set of headphones, the Sony WH-1000XM3 runs on an internal battery. This battery is monstrous, no question about it. Our own tests saw it last at least 30 hours, which is happily more than enough to get you through any long-haul flight, or even the most brutal audio-book listening marathon. Even if it does fall short of your expectations, it also has a quick-charge feature, where 10 minutes of charge will give you 5 hours of use. No matter how you slice it, something like that for a wireless headset is impressive, outdoing even the legendary favorite Bose QuietComfort 35.

If you absolutely need your headphones’ battery to last for as long as it can, then what you can do is tweak one of its settings via the Sony Headphones Connect app. The setting in question has to do with the time it takes to go to sleep due to inactivity. Set that from the 15-minute default to something like 5 minutes, and you’ll have a lot more battery life to play with. You can also just turn it off completely if you’re not using it.

Final verdict: A legendary must-buy pair of headphones

It’s easy to look at the Sony WH-1000XM3 and think that it’s just a marginal upgrade over its predecessor. However, use it for just a few minutes, and you’ll be convinced not only of its premium quality, but also of it being a clear step up over the past generation, especially when it comes to noise cancellation. If you have the budget for it, we recommend that you get it right away to experience the difference for yourself. If not, then you should definitely save up for it. This is the kind of headphones that any music lover or audiophile will be happy to have in their collection.

Once you’re ready to get yourself a pair of Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones, consider purchasing it from Poundit.com. We’re the most trusted retailer of gadgets and tech accessories in the Philippines, offering the most reasonable prices you’ll ever find online. Cop the Sony WH-1000XM3 or any other gadget of your choosing from us, and enjoy not only the ultimate in online shopping safety and convenience, but also a 100% guarantee on our products’ authenticity and quality. We also offer nationwide delivery, ensuring that your order will get to you quickly and safely no matter where you reside.

What’s more, we’re running a discount promo on this awesome pair of headphones, making it even easier on your budget. Simply use the voucher code REVIEW201912 upon checkout, and you’ll automatically have PH600 slashed off your total checkout price. This voucher code is applicable no matter if the product is marked down, on sale, on promotion, or bundled with other products. You’ll have to hurry, though, as the code is only valid 30 days from the publishing date of this article!

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