Sony WH-1000XM4 Noise-Canceling Headphones Now Available for $350

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Sony's flagship WH-1000MX3 noise-canceling headphones have been among the best on the market for some time, and this week Sony released its fourth-generation WH-1000XM4 headphones boasting some notable improvements on the previous model.


The XM4s feature the same basic design as the XM3s, but are one gram lighter at 254 grams due to slightly larger ear pads and some subtle tweaks to the hinges to improve comfort and sound isolation.

Feature-wise, the XM4s debut Sony's new DSEE Extreme audio processor, which upscales compressed audio files to hi-res quality using the company's latest Edge AI technology. They also boast a new noise-canceling algorithm that claims to analyze ambient noise in greater detail.
In addition, a new Adaptive Sound Control mode lets users create custom profiles in the companion app that will adjust the noise canceling based on location, and new Precise Voice Pickup Technology promises to pick up the user's voice better through the five built-in microphones when on a call.

A big selling point with the XM4s is their ability to connect to two Bluetooth devices at the same time, which is a big plus in our book. Previous models don't support dynamic switching between audio sources, and having to manually disconnect them from your ‌iPhone‌ so that you can connect to your Mac and vice versa feels clunky.


The MX4s offer the same battery life as their predecessors: 30 hours with noise canceling switched on, and around 38 hours with NC off. Users can also get five hours' worth of charge after 10 minutes connected to a power outlet.

The Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones come in silver and black. Both have a $350/£350 price tag and are available to buy online at Amazon and other electronics retailers.

(Thanks, Steve!)

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Article Link: Sony WH-1000XM4 Noise-Canceling Headphones Now Available for $350
 

lars666

macrumors 65816
Jul 13, 2008
1,072
1,008
The Noise Cancelling chip stayed the same, I guess?

EDIT: Ah, new algorithm at least ... Hopefully NC got even better.
 
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Reason077

macrumors 68020
Aug 14, 2007
2,297
901
I doubt it.

Although, I wonder if Sony has addressed the horrible cracking issues which plagued earlier models. I have a big head and my XM2s cracked and Sony refused to do anything about it.
I’ve had XM3s for a year and they have proven to be very robust. And believe me, I wear my headphones a lot (8+ hours every day, often even fall asleep with them on and roll over on them etc). I have broken many headphones in the past, but the XM3s can take the abuse!

Quick review after a year:
Very comfortable
Excellent NC
Great battery life and fast charging
Ear pads detach easily for cleaning

Bad points:
“Creaking” sound in hinges which makes them feel cheaper than they should (but let me stress again that this is not a durability issue)
Faint “hissing” noise from the noise cancellation, mainly after long period of use. Only happens when in NC mode.

Other than those two points, my XM3s are damn near perfect. Best headphones I’ve ever owned. Will definitely be checking out the XM4s at some point!
 

Kylo83

macrumors 6502
Apr 2, 2020
458
1,169
The last gen x3 never went loud enough for me, yeah nc was great but I like loudness
 
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adrianlondon

macrumors 68020
Nov 28, 2013
2,417
2,317
Switzerland
I didn't buy the XM3s due to all the reviews mentioning really bad call quality. Apparently, the voice pickup was so bad people on the other end usually couldn't understand what was said.

Once XM4 reviews are out, if I read that this issue is fixed I'll be buying. If it isn't, then I'll research other brands.
 

adóbò láwìn

macrumors newbie
Apr 4, 2020
9
78
Manchester, England
I didn't buy the XM3s due to all the reviews mentioning really bad call quality. Apparently, the voice pickup was so bad people on the other end usually couldn't understand what was said.

Once XM4 reviews are out, if I read that this issue is fixed I'll be buying. If it isn't, then I'll research other brands.
i have no my problems with my M3, they are the best ANC headphones i ever had
 

Reason077

macrumors 68020
Aug 14, 2007
2,297
901
I didn't buy the XM3s due to all the reviews mentioning really bad call quality. Apparently, the voice pickup was so bad people on the other end usually couldn't understand what was said.
I don’t use my XM3s for calls, but I’ve had a similar issue with gaming on my Mac.

Playing PUBG through Google Stadia, the sound quality is normally great through my XM3s.

But, if I enable the microphone to talk to my teammates, the sound quality immediately becomes absolutely terrible. It’s like there is a major bug somewhere with the sound driver or Bluetooth or something.

I suspect it’s an issue with either Stadia or the Mac Bluetooth drivers.
 

Marzel

macrumors regular
Sep 12, 2018
243
500
The XM3s are easily the best overall NC headphones. They have the best NC capabilities and among the best sound quality. I’ll seriously consider buying these.
 
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tonikumpula

macrumors newbie
Jul 30, 2020
2
0
I had 2 pairs of XM3’s and they both had serious peeping noice while used in cold weather, and they would just shut down and not come back on until they’ve been in room temperature for a while. And this peeping noice was extremely infuriating because it was nonstop. I never had this issue with Bose QC35 II headphones.
 

mike...

macrumors regular
Oct 9, 2008
204
371
I got the XM3 a few months ago and they're great. I also feel they're a much better buy as they're still £100 cheaper than the new XM4s.

Seriously, why there is no mentions of What type of connections these use? Usb-c???
Yes there's USB-C on the headset, the included cable is a pathetically short USB-C to USB-A.
 

MartinBo

macrumors newbie
Dec 29, 2016
4
3
I don’t use my XM3s for calls, but I’ve had a similar issue with gaming on my Mac.

Playing PUBG through Google Stadia, the sound quality is normally great through my XM3s.

But, if I enable the microphone to talk to my teammates, the sound quality immediately becomes absolutely terrible. It’s like there is a major bug somewhere with the sound driver or Bluetooth or something.

I suspect it’s an issue with either Stadia or the Mac Bluetooth drivers.
It's not a bug. It's the way Bluetooth works. Yes, in 2020 we still don't have a technology with enough bandwidth to handle full duplex wireless HD audio :oops:
 

cheesyappleuser

macrumors 6502a
Apr 5, 2011
521
104
Portugal
This Sony headphone line is amazing, but their planned obsolence makes me a bit sick.

I have the WH-1000XM2 and they're still pretty good overall.
The thing is, I haven't seen any way in which I can purchase original replacement ear pads or a battery. I don't care about new headphones until these get damaged because they're good enough for me.
 
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JulianL

macrumors 65816
Feb 2, 2010
1,148
132
London, UK
I'll be interested to compare them to Bowers and Wilkins PX7's which IMHO are the best in class so far.
Me too. The B&W PX7 are the ones I own at the moment. I chose the PX7 because, even though quite a few of the reviews I read before buying put the Sony XM3s as the best overall wireless headphone, much of the time even the reviews that declared the XM3 the overall category winner said that if best sound quality was your biggest consideration (which it is for me) then the PX7 was king there.

All the reviews that I've read say that the XM4 is using the same drivers as the XM3 so I'm not sure there will be a big difference in sound quality but you never know, signal processing and even how the drivers are mounted and isolated within the earcups can make a difference so like you I'm really interested in seeing some MX4 vs PX7 reviews with a detailed look at sound quality.

The one thing the PX7 often get dinged for vs the MX3 is long term wearability with the PX7 being noticeably heavier and higher clamping force than the MX3 but I don't think that alone is enough to make me change, I would need to be confident that the XM4 has leapfrogged the PX7 on sound quality and given no driver changes I can't see that happening but it will still be interesting to see a few good comparison reviews re the sound quality differences now.
 

Namara

Contributor
Apr 16, 2020
2,185
1,901
East of the sun, west of the moon
I’ve only had my XM3s for a few months and am so very pleased with everything about them, so won’t be upgrading. I got them on sale at Best Buy for $279. I had tried Beats first and returned them within a half hour; they were nothing like the XM3 experience. It’s nice to see the multi-BT option, but just for that, it’s not enough to upgrade.
 
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Pangalactic

macrumors 6502
Nov 28, 2016
443
1,019
Best headphones I've ever had. Great battery life (around 20 hours), USB C charging, controls on of the "ears", great sound, best noise cancelling, and so comfortable I actually sleep on the planes with them.

Still surprised they haven't changed the naming to something more sensible though 😁
 

iBug2

macrumors 601
Jun 12, 2005
4,146
389
I didn't like these. I eventually bought B&W PX7 after listening to all popular NC headphones. But I'm selling the B&W as well because I stopped using them due to "new normal". I'm not in noisy environments anymore. :) If and when Apple comes up with a new high end headset, the only thing that would make me buy it would be extremely good comfort and audio quality. Don't care about NC these days.
 
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