Official Sony WF-1000XM3 Thread - Noise Cancelling True Wireless Earphones
Jul 19, 2019 at 9:59 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 1,494

monini13

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What's up folks! Sony has recently released the new noise-cancelling true wireless sound earphones WF-1000XM3 and I've had the pleasure of attending the experience event for this product just this past week at Tokyo. My name is Joseph and I've been working with @thatonenoob to provide tech/audio reviews and updates for the past two and a half years. I'll be posting more updates on this thread as the event moves along, so feel free to ask me any questions. Also, just to make it clear, this is a second generation product, unlike what the name suggests.

I'm also on the SEAudio discord channel and will regularly be posting updates there as well. If you'd like to hear from me, you can join our server using this link.

So far, these are the information that have been revealed to us!
- 6hr battery life on earphones + 18hr additional battery life from the charging case (With ANC)
- 8hr battery life on earphones + 24hr additional battery life from the charging case (Without ANC)
- Same 6mm dynamic driver found in the first generation WF-1000X
- Dual sensor for noise cancelling
- Noise Cancelling processor QN1e (this is similar the QN1 found in the WH-1000XM3, though smaller, and also each earphone carries its own processor)
- Simultaneous bluetooth transmission to both earphones

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Layout:

1. Design / Philosophy
2. Engineer Technical Video Interview
3. General Impressions

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1. Design / Philosophy

Through a survey conducted by Sony, they've realised that for many people, the most time spent listening to music is while travelling, such as on the train or on a bus, particularly in Asia. This is one of the reasons for their increased focus on portable audio as well as noise cancelling function that can negate the noisy surroundings. Their headphone variant (WH-1000XM3), has been having very successful sales figures, and Sony would like to improve on their wireless earphones. The main improvements are focused on battery life, noise cancellation, and latency. These are the bane of true wireless audios and Sony has incorporated impressive technologies in order to alleviate some of these issues that plague users of true wireless earphones.

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The earphones have two noise cancelling microphones that can help negate ambient noise.

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Each earphone has their own noise cancelling processor and they carry out the noise cancelling separately. The processor, QN1e, also acts as the DAC and amplifier for the driver unit. Having an individual processor in each earphone allows both to receive bluetooth signal from the phone/source directly. Sadly, LDAC and Aptx are not supported.

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Compared to the old design, where only one side communicates with the phone and then relays it to the other earphone, this new simultaneous design allows for up to four times reduction in audio latency between phone and earphones! This also means that you can choose to use either the left or the right earphone for one sided usage.

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Jul 19, 2019 at 10:00 AM Post #2 of 1,494
______________________________________________________________________________________
1. General Impressions
I must admit my enthusiasm has led me to try this product in stores before heading to the experience event. This has given me time get used to the sound and compare it with different earphones over multiple instances. Firstly, I would just like to say the pairing process was simple and with my iPhone, I had to connect through the Sony app and after that, the earpieces automatically connected whenever you put them on.

Amongst other true wireless earphones, the WF-1000XM3 ($229.99USD) certainly ranks high in terms of sound. I've tried some of the more prominent ones here in Asia such as the Audio-Technica Sport7TW and B&F E8, and the WF-1000XM3 provides superior levels of clarity and detail. It has a smooth and slightly warm sound signature, though somewhat uncharacteristic of Sony, in the sense that it does not have as much of an emphasis on bass. Soundstage is also not large, and a little bit smaller with ANC turned on. For more acoustic songs, these true wireless earphones Sony certainly works well, but for songs that gets a lil messy, the WF-1000XM3's suffers in terms of separation. However, this is common amongst many of the true wireless earphones. There is also noticeable roll-off in both ends of the frequency, lacking sub-bass extension and the rumble, as well as the sparkly highs. Sonically, the Sennheiser Momentums TW are better, with more extension and detail retrieval. However, the Momentums TW's are significantly more expensive ($299USD), and it suffers from sub-par battery life(only 4hrs of listening time per charge), which I feel is a huge limiting factor for true wireless earphones, i.e. the earphones are more or less useless once its battery life has degraded. Nevertheless, the WF-1000XM3 were designed for the mass market in mind and its slightly warm sound signature certainly works very well with many genres and is very easy to listen to. It is also very easy to adjust the eq on the Sony app itself and I am very grateful for that.

On a more important note, the WF-1000XM3 has noise-cancelling features built in, and as far as I know, the only other company other than Sony to incorporate it into true wireless earphones is Jabra with their Evolve 65t UC True Wireless Earbuds, and that happens to be also be much more expensive($329USD). The noise cancelling feature is implemented extremely well, and I was drowned in my own music while walking through the busy streets of Tokyo, and even on the train. In fact, Sony booked a private train just for us to test the noise-cancelling feature, and the two hour train ride was an eye opening experience. Trying different true wireless earphones on the train, even if your earphones sound good, if there is so much ambient noise, you would not be able to properly listen to your music. I sincerely felt that the WF-1000XM3 provided a very complete package, with decent sound, excellent noise cancelling and long battery life, altogether providing a very good value for its market price.
 
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Jul 20, 2019 at 7:51 AM Post #4 of 1,494
Will almost certainly be getting these from Amazon UK when I’m in UK 3 weeks in September
 
Jul 20, 2019 at 9:45 AM Post #6 of 1,494
I wish it had a wired input connection for inflight entertainment for travelers. That's missing for business treveler usage.

Does any true wireless iem offer that ?
 
Jul 20, 2019 at 9:52 AM Post #7 of 1,494
I’m hyped. When is Canada release? (Probably Amazon).
 
Jul 20, 2019 at 10:02 AM Post #8 of 1,494
I wish it had a wired input connection for inflight entertainment for travelers. That's missing for business treveler usage.

Haha ived entertained the idea of getting those bluetooth transmitters out from an aux port. Could work with TV and desktops and airplanes as well! Not too sure how well it will work with the wf-1000xm3 though! Will try soon with different sources
 
Jul 20, 2019 at 10:04 AM Post #9 of 1,494
Jul 20, 2019 at 10:20 AM Post #11 of 1,494
exciting!!!! have you used any other true wireless iems before

I’m at the moment using Earin M2 that I really like, would just wish they lasted longer than 3 hours. Have had Beoplay E8 and Havit G1 that I have just sold.
 
Jul 22, 2019 at 12:17 AM Post #13 of 1,494
Just my two cents,

I was more interested till I found it didn't have LDAC or at least AptX, which is a ridiculous shame.
In my humble opinion, Sony wasted a good opportunity to compete in the wireless IEM segment & further bolster their WH 1000 X Series but then since they're concentrating on their entertainment division for the next few years, this isn't a surprise.

I am still going to try the WF 1000XM3 but it is definitely low priority & more a curiosity.

Hope everyone has a great day !
 
Jul 22, 2019 at 1:33 AM Post #14 of 1,494
Just my two cents,

I was more interested till I found it didn't have LDAC or at least AptX, which is a ridiculous shame.
In my humble opinion, Sony wasted a good opportunity to compete in the wireless IEM segment & further bolster their WH 1000 X Series but then since they're concentrating on their entertainment division for the next few years, this isn't a surprise.

I am still going to try the WF 1000XM3 but it is definitely low priority & more a curiosity.

Hope everyone has a great day !

Haha certainly the lack of LDAC and Aptx is noticed by audiophiles. I did ask why there was no support for these features during the technical interview session (which I will upload soon).

They mentioned that they used a new Bluetooth chip from a different partner (not Qualcomm) and thus does not support the Aptx. Additionally, their response for dropping the LDAC support was that they were trying to find a compromise between sound quality and battery life, and I guess they felt that the improvement in sound quality was not worth the decreased battery life. While they said they cannot comment on future products, they mentioned that they were testing LDAC on true wireless products, so let's remain hopeful!
 
Jul 22, 2019 at 6:39 AM Post #15 of 1,494
Thank you for impressions. I am very much looking forward to giving these a try. It’s so unfortunate that in the true-wireless-IEM arena, there isn’t anything that “does it all” and it’s all about compromises.

I was quite happy with my Sennheiser IE80 and Audeze iSine 20 paired with my iPhone 6s Plus until I upgraded to a newer iPhone that lacked a headphone jack. I still really hate that they did that.

The first BT headphone I bought was the Sony WH-1000XM3. The sound was decent once I played with the equalizer, but nothing to write home about. However, the ANC was shockingly good. But these, being a full sized headphone, was too big for everyday use. These really only get used on an airplane. My overall impressions were positive and relieved some of my hesitation t enter into the BT audio market.

What I really wanted was a set of BT true wireless IEMs. I saw that the Jabra Elite 65t was on sale at Best Buy so I bought them. I really loved how convenient these were. I could connect my iPad and IPhone at the same time and it would just play whichever one I was using! No more messing with pairing whenever I wanted to use the other device. Call quality was okay. Controls were decent. Some sort of IPX rating. But one thing really bugged me. The sound quality wasn’t good. It was hard to listen to music with these as the treble seemed to hurt my ears.

Based on all of my past preferences for headphones, I seemed to gravitate towards Sennheiser’s sound signature. I have the IE80, CX300, HD555, HD650x, and HD800 - all of which I am super happy with. If the Jabra’s had similar sound to the relatively cheap CX300, I would be more than happy. My quest for better sound led me to the Sennheiser MTW.

That was a total bust. The sound was good. While not super high end sound, they performed well enough that I didn’t feel like much was missing from my favourite tracks. BUT there was one very fatal flaw - the battery would die after a week of not using them. There was a firmware “fix” but it eliminates the convenience of having true wireless in the first place.

I heard about the Sony WF-1000XM3 a few days ago and became obsessed. Perhaps these were the IEMs that I was looking for. Plus they have the same ANC tech from my beloved big XM3s!

I found some reviews in YouTube and asked as many questions as I could think of. I found out that it was possible to leave these on with ANC running without music playing. That means that I could use these as ANC earplugs! From what I’ve read, the sound quality is good. Call quality is okay. Battery life is excellent. No IPX rating though. And no multi point simultaneous bluetooth connection. Hmm.

For those that have tried these, how do they sonically compare to other IEMs? (True wireless or wired). I heard lots of great things about the Jabra 65t but I found that I couldn’t stand the sound quality.

How stable has the connection been?

How well does ambient sound pass through work? Does it sound natural, muffled, or does it amplify your surroundings?

Is there a locator function in the even they become misplaced? (ie can you get it to emit a loud beep or will they show up via GPS if they are lost?)

Do the ear tips use a standard/common size?



Sorry about the wall of text. I’m having. A sleepless night so......
 

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