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Sennheiser introduces the Momentum 3

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  1. cripple1
    I feel you about the LDAC codec. I'm starting to see it more and more. Android phones and DAP's alike, as well as things like Sony's own wireless headphones and even the Audeze Mobius. Would have been great to see on this newest Momentum iteration. I am happy to see AptX LL and AAC support this time around. Maybe in the next incarnation of the Momentum we'll get some LDAC support, but as of now? I feel like this is a very good upgrade feature-wise to the previous versions.
  2. Bansaku
    Folks, listen, 99.9% of music produced is still 16/44 with no signs of changing. Why add cost to implement LDAC or APX HD when the vast majority of users will never use the feature? Besides, the Momentums have always been OTG headphones, and I doubt your notice a difference between standard and hi-rez when out and about.
    trellus and Bytor123 like this.
  3. cripple1
    Its not that big of a deal, but I would still like the option. Most people use the Momentum out and about, sure, but not everyone does. Myself for instance: I'm in a wheelchair and I like using Bluetooth headphones to avoid getting wires caught and torn up in my wheels, so I use Bluetooth more often than some others might at home. That's where LDAC would be pretty handy for myself. That being said, I'm not complaining that it isn't there. I'm happy we have AptX LL and AAC support this time around. Was just saying it would have been nice to see with everything else, but it isn't a huge deal.
  4. Giullian
    Is more about reaching new users and more importantly the users that are keen to pay for the extra benefit.
    cripple1 likes this.
  5. gr8soundz
    I had the original Momentum wireless still have a wired pair of the Momentum 2.0. Only thing missing (for me) in the version 3 specs is an HD codec.

    Truth is, there are too many bluetooth codecs to get them all in every new device. Not sure how much it extra it costs to license aptx-HD but I believe LDAC is free after certification and, until someone makes an audiophile headphone with aptx Adaptive (which combines the features of LL and HD), I would've settled for any HD codec.

    Each implementation is different but I heard a noticeable improvement going from aptx to aptx-HD via Poweramp app to a bluetooth dac/amp. It reminded me how (at the time) going from 128kbps to 320kbps mp3s made a huge difference. 128 can sound ok when properly encoded from a good source but 320 sounds much better; good enough that it's often hard to distinguish from 16/44 lossless. Most of my collection is redbook but, even at 16/44, the extra bandwidth makes a difference to my ears; so much that I have a hard time settling for aptx.

    Most head-fiers would never choose mp3 over FLAC or WAV but when I have to use them I prefer 320kbps. Similarly, some of us avoid wireless for the same reason: reduced quality. So (looking at you Sennheiser), if I'm gonna go wireless, at least give me a bit more bandwidth.......
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019
    Giullian and cripple1 like this.
  6. Giullian
    Same boat. for Aptx vs Aptx HD is based on Qualcomm chipset, so I understand the costs involved here, but if LDAC is only based on software I don't agree to not have that added. even though is a 2019 model appealing to an audiophile public. Even all new TW headphone and Bluetooth adapters being released today, if doesn't have HD or LDAC is totally out of the table, for me at least.
    gr8soundz likes this.
  7. Sonic Defender Contributor
    While I think that simply to match competitors specifications there is a solid reason to implement both Apt X HD and LDAC. My last few portable headphones, including my current portable, have supported all of the Codecs, but frankly, I am not sure that I can tell a difference between LDAC and humble AAC for instance, and many experienced headphone enthusiasts have said the same. Regardless, at this price point, it is essentially a firmly entrenched, minimal expectation and I am quite surprised that Sennheiser would go to market without realizing this.

    Hopefully the sound quality and tuning is so good that people will overlook this. Seriously Sennheiser, whoever made the decision exercised questionable judgement. All you needed to do was spend a few hours going through threads here and elsewhere on the Internet to realize that people want full Codec support, period. Even if the retail price had to climb to say $449, the sales would likely do better.
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019
    trellus likes this.
  8. billbishere
    I can tell a difference between Aptx HD and SBC on my Bowers and Wilkins PX. I have A B tested with AptX HD vs all the others and Aptx HD always comes through with the most detail and impact. Its subtle usually but, there none the less. From all i read Aptx HD is the better of them, while on paper LDAC should be better its not in testing. Aptx HD is the cleanest signal. Plus, on Sony headphones you can't use EQ if you are using LDAC. They are the ones who invented LDAC too.
  9. joshnor713
    It's disappointing but not surprising to me. Momentum is aimed toward "mainstream", and mainstream aren't aware of higher fidelity codecs (I've even talked to people before that didn't know they could set their music streaming to higher quality). I'm sure Sennheiser is striking a balance with aptX - throw a bone to us that care but not overdo it for those who don't. They included aptX HD in their other new release, the IE 80S BT, so goes to show that they are aware of it and reserve using it for their "audiophile" devices.

    While I understand the strategy, I disagree with it. There will be audiophiles that love this design and idea (such as myself) that they're abandoning. I'm doubtful that the saved effort throwing in the codecs is worth that cost. And you have the WH-1000XM3 (that was released a whole year ago) that has LDAC. AptX HD and LDAC aren't new codecs; there's little reason today not to include them.
  10. trellus
    Yeah, to be clear, it's not a big deal to me in the least -- I have only two Bluetooth over-ear headphones that support something besides AAC or plain aptX, the B&W PX (aptX HD) and the original Sony MDR-1000X (LDAC), but I currently have no devices which can send using either codec so beyond testing it a couple of times (I used to have an LG V20 and a Sony Walkman A35), I don't really have any experience being wowed incredibly by either of these higher codecs, so I'm really fine just having AAC for my iPhone and aptX for my MacBook.

    I'm just surprised they wouldn't add it given that many (though not all) of the competing products in the same price bracket support at least one of the higher codecs.
  11. billbishere
    I guess the only excuse they could fall back on is that the US market is saturated with iPhones which only support AAC.

    But I just keep coming back to $400 for headphones and they don't spring with the license. Which is what the real issue is, Qualcomm charging a good chunk for that privilege.
  12. Sonic Defender Contributor
    iPhones are still a small marketshare of all phones, Android dwarfs iPhones. Even so you can include AAC and the other Codecs so both platforms can be supported.
  13. Mark Up
    The headband looks larger maybe to better accompany larger heads (as all HD6XX series and HD58X do, the only phones I don't have to full extend to reach my ears enough to fully cover them). The earpads look longer, wider, deeper. Finally. I am so sick of 'portable' headphones being married to the idea that you must have tiny ear cups to save space when they take up all of what; 1-2 inches more space for that? I'll tolerate a 1 - 2 inch larger carrying case for the sake of long term comfort. This may also address sound quality, I liked their general sonic profile and the prior wireless were amazing when you had them in Bluetooth mode as far as sub bass, though without it they were a tad bright and lacking down there and that improved ear space should also enhance the spatial sound field since that was an area they could also stand to improve. The concept of the Momentum was closer to what all wireless, and or N/R headphones should do. Make a headphone that sounds great wired to begin with, THEN, build on that in NR / BT mode, it doesn't have to sound the same, it could sound better, but with Sony and Bose offerings, they consistently sound terrible wired with no NR, then you put the NR on and they are correct. Without having to correct the horrible passive sound, they can simply improve on it in those modes. Though of course there are more rare cases of cans that sound good wired and then they go to complete crap when you'll put the NR on; usually BT alone fares better then.
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019
  14. billbishere
    I don't disagree... But I don't know how the cans sell outside of the US I suppose was my main point / question / excuse making
  15. Sonic Defender Contributor
    Truthfully I don't know that either, but I suspect collectively, they sell more units outside the US. That would be very interesting to know, thanks for the thought.
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