Sony WF-1000XM4 Impressions Thread
Aug 10, 2021 at 8:00 PM Post #1,216 of 1,645

jasonb

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My revised tip preferences: SpinFit 360, Azla SednaEarfitLight Short, JVC SpiralDot++, Sony stock tips. The SpinFit tips are the brightest, with excellent integration across the spectrum; I also find them to be the most comfortable. The midrange on these is probably the clearest of all. They seem to let the port extend deeper into my ears than the others. The Azla tips highs are a bit disjointed from the mids. The SpiralDot++ tips don't seem as integrated (the mids seem almost separated from the highs). The Sony tips isolate the best, but are dark and the sounds are increasingly muted as the frequency goes up.
Agreed. The CP360's are my favorite for these. They really makes these sound super clean, clear and detailed. With no EQ at all, and forcing LDAC to the highest bitrate these really sound great to me.
 
Aug 10, 2021 at 9:35 PM Post #1,219 of 1,645

grape ape

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Does anybody else have lackluster noise canceling? Compared to my full-size whxm3s the noise canceling seems very weak. I can hear only some difference with noise canceling on and off. I’m on an iPhone with the headphones app on the latest firmware of that matters.

I’ve tried googling it but with out much help. I’m mostly curious if my expectations are too high. I’m just getting more sound leakage than from a decent pair of isolating iems like shure or ety’s
 
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Aug 10, 2021 at 9:38 PM Post #1,220 of 1,645

joshnor713

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I've noticed the lid on the case has some play when closed, which is a small nuisance when feeling/hearing small creaks. Is this just by design or a QC issue?
Same with mine. Think it's just like that. Oversight by Sony if you ask me. Everything else about the product feels solid.
 
Aug 10, 2021 at 9:40 PM Post #1,221 of 1,645

jasonb

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Does anybody else have lackluster noise canceling? Compared to my full-size whxm3s the noise canceling seems very weak. I can hear only some difference with noise canceling on and off. I’m on an iPhone with the headphones app on the latest firmware of that matters.

I’ve tried googling it but with out much help. I’m mostly curious if my expectations are too high. I’m just getting more sound leakage than from a decent pair of isolating iems like shure or ety’s
I'm going to assume you're using different tips than the foam they come with?
 
Aug 10, 2021 at 9:56 PM Post #1,223 of 1,645

jasonb

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No, I’m using the medium foam tops that came with the headphones. The headphones app also says I have a good seal.
I'm going to then assume that you're just expecting too much. They cancel noise, just not a ton.
 
Aug 10, 2021 at 10:05 PM Post #1,225 of 1,645

jasonb

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I’m definitely not ruling that out. I like them and I’m going to keep them. They sound acceptable and have 8hs on a charge and I’m done with cables on portable headphones.
I didn't buy mine mainly for the ANC, and the isolation on mine will be worse than yours because I'm using silicone tips, but I don't mind. I'm really liking the sound of these, and the extra features are just extra features to me.
 
Aug 11, 2021 at 2:18 AM Post #1,227 of 1,645

Tenlow

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Comparison Sony WF-1000XM4 and Master&Dynamic MW08 Sport



  1. Build Quality: That kevlar case of the MW08S is so much nicer and feels way more premium. It seems much more stable/durable, too (no play whatsoever, unlike the Sony case). I also like the three LEDs on the front (one for each bud plus one for the charging case). The M&D case slightly taller while Sony case is a bit wider in dimensions. Both cases offer charging via USB-C as well as wireless charging. The buds themselves are well built on the Sony but maybe a bit chunky, while the MW08S provide a sapphire glas finish and just look and feel gorgeous. Winner: M&D (1:0)
  2. Battery life is exceptional on both devices. Up to 12 hours are possible (10 with ANC) on the M&D, while Sony provides 8 hours with ANC and also a possible 12 hours with ANC off. Total (theoretical) battery running times (including the case’s battery) are 36 hours on the Sonys and 42 hours on the MW08S. Both offer quick charge. So, even though both are incredible here, the M&D take the cake ever so slightly. Winner: M&D (2:0)
  3. Connectivity is also very impressive on both buds. Both offer Bluetooth 5.2. The XM4 have SBC, AAC and LDAC codecs, while the MW08S offer SBC, AAC and aptX Adaptive. Bluetooth range is pretty much equally as good and stable on both as well. Both don’t offer multipoint connection unfortunately. However, both can use either the left or the right bud while the other one charges in the case. So each bud establishes its own connection and there is no so-called “hero and sidekick” implementation, which is very good. Switching to paired devices is, however, better implemented on the Sonys. You can just directly connect to a previously paired device, while you have to go to bluetooth pairing mode first on the MW08S before you can connect. This minor inconvenience on the M&D make Sony the winner here. Winner: Sony (2:1)
  4. Fit/Comfort is highly subjective of course, so I can only speak for myself here. I’m a relatively tall guy (1,90m) and have normal to big ears. Still, I can definitely feel the XM4 more in my ears. At first, they were even a bit painful and my ears had to adjust to the new sore spots, which they luckily did after some time. Now, the XM4 are relatively comfortable even and don’t hurt any more but they are still a bit bulbous and I never forget that I’m wearing them. For me, the MW08S shine in the comfort department. They don’t feel heavy and most of the buds size is “outside” the ear and therefore there are no sore spots or anything like that. They really are supremely comfortable (and stable!) in my ears and I can wear them for several hours without any issues. M&D also provides 5 silicone ear tips + 3 foam tips, while Sony only offers 3 sizes of their new “hybrid foam NC” tips. Winner: M&D (3:1)
  5. Passive and active noise isolation is better on the Sony, also partly already due to the aforementioned new tips. They really block out a lot of noise on their own already without any ANC. The MW08S also provide very good passive noise isolation if you use the included foam tips (which is typical for foam tips of course). Still, the XM4 are a bit better here.More importantly, ANC is clearly better on the WF-1000XM4. While the M&D are no slouch and good enough for most situations, the Sony are simply a level higher here and are rightfully called the best ANC buds as of now (together with the Bose buds maybe). ANC is seriously impressive on the XM4. The MW08S have slightly better ANC then the MTW2 from Sennheiser, I would say (just for reference). Winner: Sony (3:2)
  6. App support scores the next point for the XM4. While both InEars have an accompanying app, the M&D is fairly sparse in direct comparison. You can set the standard modes for ANC and transparency mode there, rename the buds, set an auto-off timer, turn in-ear detection on or off and install firmware updates. That’s it. Sonys app offers a plethora of features on top of that, like adjusting automatic ambient sound modes, an actually usable 6 band EQ (!), adjusting touch gestures for both sides, the very useful “speak to chat” feature, DSEE Extreme upscaling, showing the currently used codec and even more than that. Winner: Sony (3:3)
  7. Audio quality is very good on both offerings. I like the stock tuning of the MW08S better than the XM4’s stock EQ. It is clear, “wide”, with detailed highs and a nice punchy (not muddy) bass response. It’s understandable why the went with a sound signature like this. It will please many people. What makes the XM4 stand out here, though, is that a) they can get louder if needed (I always like that “freedom”) and more importantly they have the previously mentioned EQ in the app that makes them soo versatile sound wise as they really respond well to that EQ! Stock tuning is a bit dark/warm with lacking treble extension and not many details in the highs in general. The EQ, however, solves that “problem” for me entirely and I love how the XM4 sound after EQ. Ultimately, the XM4 win this category because of their EQ. Otherwise, it would have been a draw. Winner: Sony (3:4)
  8. Controls are completely different. Sony uses a very responsive and accurate touch control implementation while the Master&Dynamic use tactile physical buttons. You can play/Pause, skip or reverse tracks, (de-) activate ANC and transparency mode and summon your personal assistant like Siri as well as enter pairing mode with no issues on both models. Both work very well and I cannot say that I do have a real preference here. If you do, you might want to consider this, however. Still, for me, the M&D take this round just because you can additionally increase/decrease the volume on the left bud without having to sacrifice another feature for it (which you have to do on the XM4, as of now at least, as you can only set one control scheme per bud and not multiple at the moment). Winner: M&D (4:4)
  9. Call quality/microphones are equally ok and very usable. I tested both for a couple of calls and had no complaints on either model. They may not be the best buds around for calls but they work well enough. I cannot say which one is (much) better here, honestly. They're both no Airpods here. Winner: Draw (4:4).
  10. Price/Performance ratio and conclusion: It is very much debatable of course. The XM4 are significantly more "affordable" being 70€ less here (279€ vs. 349€) and offer more features as well as the better sound quality (EQ'd!!) and better ANC. They are the more "complete" package/allrounder. So, rationally, the XM4 are the better buy and value for money if you're looking for premium wireless Bluetooth ANC inears. They would also be my pick in this category because of it. That said, in times of the Bowers&Wilkins PI7, e.g. which are even an additional 50€ compared to the MW08S, the MW08S still have a lot going for them (compared to both the XM4 and the PI7 that is). They have that wonderful kevlar case, excellent build quality on the buds (sapphire glas), are more comfortable (to me), have the better total battery life, great controls, offer the much larger selection of included (7, silicone and foam) tips while also sounding very good. I will keep both the XM4 and the MW08S for now as I love them equally at the moment. Time will tell how this feeling develops :) Winner: You choose :)
 

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Aug 11, 2021 at 2:49 AM Post #1,228 of 1,645

TweedLee

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I'm using my xm3, I don't know how much improvement xm4 has made compared to xm3. But I heard that xm4's sound is not as good as xm3's, so I hesitate to upgrade to xm4. Btw, I don't care about LDAC for a functional product.
 
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Aug 11, 2021 at 2:54 AM Post #1,229 of 1,645

gLer

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I'm using my xm3, I don't know how much improvement xm4 has made compared to xm3. But I heard that xm4's sound is not as good as xm3's, so I hesitate to upgrade to xm4. Btw, I don't care about LDAC for a functional product.
The XM3 was downright unusable for me from an ergonomics perspective. Regardless of how much better the XM4 sounds, if at all, the point is moot.
 
Aug 11, 2021 at 5:16 AM Post #1,230 of 1,645

nc8000

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I'm using my xm3, I don't know how much improvement xm4 has made compared to xm3. But I heard that xm4's sound is not as good as xm3's, so I hesitate to upgrade to xm4. Btw, I don't care about LDAC for a functional product.
To me the XM4 sounds slightly different and the XM3 might have been marginally better without eq but with eq I prefer the XM4. The anc and battery life is better on XM4 (battery much better, I get near 10 hours vs 4 hours with same settings (anc and eq enabked )) and the ergonomics of the XM4 are better (and smaller) though I never had problems with the XM3. To me the upgrade is worth it
 

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