You may try to go to Best Buy, Fry’s, or any other electronics place to get the new Sony WF-1000XM3 buds. If you go, chances are that you will come back without them. Sony’s new noise cancelling earbuds are very hard to fine. And there is a good reason for that.
It’s important to note that these buds are quite big compared to other earbuds. And the case they come with feels relatively large, although it still fits in your pocket. They’re not the most comfortable earbuds, and you feel the slight annoyance of their weight after about an hour. That said, I still sleep with them every night to block out annoying noises, though they will sometimes drop out.
The WF-1000XM3s have no waterproof rating either, which is a shame since they offer just about everything else. Sony hasn’t hit the waterproof spot that Jabra has with their earbuds, but Sony”s are still far better.
The most noticeable thing about the WF-1000XM3 buds is the noise cancellation, which is impossibly good for a product this size. They offer about 80 percent of the isolation that the big over-the-ear WH-1000XM3 give out. For those who don’t comprehend technology, this may not be good enough. For the rest of us, this type of noise cancellation is a technological breakthrough for buds that can fit in your pocket.
Then, there is the sound. Sony takes the heavy bass and high treble from the WH-1000XM3 and puts it in these small buds. You can manipulate the sound with Sony’s Headphones app, but it’s better to just let the 1000XM3s do their thing with their natural audio ouput. The sound quality equals that of the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless buds, but Sennheiser doesn’t have noise cancellation.
If you want to wear your buds in public and be able to hear everything and everybody around you, Sony’s buds offer an Ambient Mode that allows you to change the amount of sound that comes through. If you are jogging outdoors, it’s a good idea to turn it all the way up. You can also switch from Ambient Mode to Noise Cancellation Mode with just the touch of your finger on the left bud. The right bud controls playback, Google Assistant, or Siri.
As I noted in my ears-on impressions review of Sony’s new earbuds, the phone quality isn’t the best. But as I’ve been able to make more calls, I’ve realized the call quality is definitely adequate. Yes, people can tell I am wearing earbuds, but they can still hear me. If I’m in busy traffic and surrounded by loud noise, I do have to constantly repeat myself.
When push comes to shove, the WH-1000XM3 buds are worth the $230. If anything, you get a small noise cancellation system that fits in your pocket. The 1000XM3s aren’t the perfect earbuds that smartphone users have been asking for, but they are closer to perfection than any earbuds have come so far.