Sony has introduced the WF-1000XM4 as its formal contender to the premium TWS earphones market.
While there are tons of TWS in the below Php5,000 and Php10,000 price range, the Sony WF-1000XM4 and its SRP of Php13,999 aims to go against the more serious competition, like the Apple AirPods Pro. So the question is, does this pair of cans have what it takes to compete? We find out in our Sony WF-1000XM4 review.
First, let’s talk about the box. Sony went with a really compact and straightforward box that’s also eco-friendly, with almost no plastic in sight. Everything is tightly packed. No nonsense.
Sony WF-1000XM4 has small and large ear tip options, apart from the pre-installed medium size. There’s also a short USB Type-C cable for charging and an instruction manual in different languages.
Speaking of ear tips, it’s made of memory foam material, albeit there are only three sizes available in the box, which is quite disappointing. On the upside, the ones included fit well and feel comfortable enough when you finally get used to them. They also stay in your ears during workouts. You may have to play around with its position in your ears and try out different sizes for the best possible fit and sound quality.
If you’re not 100% sure you got the right fit, you can use the ear-fit test in the Sony Headphones Connect app, which is available on both Android and iOS. It even takes pictures of your ears so it can better analyze them and apply the right setting for you.
The app also lets you control the noise cancellation settings, ambient sound control, and equalization.
When it comes to noise cancellation, the WF-1000XM4 does a respectable job in this area. Consistent noise like chatters inside a coffee shop will disappear. And if you’re at work or at home, it has a feature that highlights voices speaking to you so you stay aware. It also has an auto-pause feature whenever it detects someone’s talking to you. That’s something a lot of cheaper alternatives don’t have.
As for the design, the Sony WF-1000XM4 has a more subtle but still distinct design. It has a matte finish, so it stays clean and elegant. Unlike its predecessor, this one now has IPX4 for water and sweat resistance, so you can exercise with it.
The microphones pick up your voice and ambient noise through the copper-colored grills, which gives the earphones that distinct look.
Each bud has large circular areas for touch controls. You can single-tap the left bud to enter noise-canceling or ambient sound modes, while a long press is for quick attention.
The right earbud controls are for music. Single tap for play/pause, double-tap for the next song, triple-tap for the previous music, and long press to summon the voice assistant. It works with both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, which is a huge plus if you already have it in your setup.
Now, let’s talk about the most important feature: sound quality. Sony highlights the WF-1000XM4’s support for LDAC codec, which can deliver music wirelessly at up to 990kbps — currently one of the best you can get from a wireless audio device. Perfect timing, since a lot of popular streaming services like Apple Music and Spotify, are offering lossless music streaming.
Overall sound quality is top-notch. If you get the ear fit right, you’ll be treated with rich and deep bass. That should be enough to satisfy most people. But Sony didn’t stop there, as vocal, treble/highs, and mids also sound incredible on this one.
For calls, the Sony WF-1000XM4 has beamforming microphones and bone conduction sensors so it can pick up your voice better.
Sony is capping things off by putting an impressive battery life on the WF-1000XM4. Each bud can last for a whopping 12 hours on a single charge with noise canceling off. While the Qi wireless/USB Type-C charging case can carry two extra charges, so you’re looking at around 36 hours of total playtime on this pair of earphones.
Still, the WF-1000XM4 is not perfect. Besides the limited ear tip choices, another thing missing about these earphones is the lack of a multipoint feature, which lets you connect between two devices simultaneously so you can switch between them seamlessly.
But for its price of Php13,999, the Sony WF-1000XM4 is tough to beat. Sony covered all the key areas on this one, and they covered it well. It has great sound quality, clean design, intelligent ANC, and great battery life.
If you want to purchase the Sony WF-1000XM4, it’s now available in the Philippines via Shopee, Lazada, and authorized dealers nationwide.