The best headphones with terrible names

One thing up front:WF-1000XM4“It’s an outrageous name. But this is really the biggest criticism directed at the current Sony criticism Wireless in-ear headphones.

The WF-1000XM4 is basically the in-ear version of the premium model too WH-1000XM4who also has a terrible name. And that’s exactly the trick: no, not the multiple bad naming of headphones, but to transfer the outstanding performance of an over-ear model to an in-ear model.

Smaller and more beautiful

Headphones are even smaller PREVIOUS MODEL WF-1000XM3. As a result, they no longer protrude strangely from the ears. There are smaller ears than the competition, but they also have less power. The charging case has also been made smaller.

With the shrinkage procedure comes a new design. The case and the headphones look the same: excellent. The headphones (which I tested in black) have copper accents and elegant curves. If you hold it in your hand, it looks a bit swollen. When you put it on and look at yourself in the mirror, it’s unnoticeable.

The headphones and case look high quality. The ears show where the halves of the case are put together – but there are no nasty gaps.

Good wearing comfort, but be careful when doing sports

The headphones come with me 3 different size attachments. Medium sized pre-installed. Here you should take the time to try all sizes. In the headphone companion app, you can make a test. This measures pressure and thus detects whether the selected attachments are delivering the best possible sound quality by closing off the ear canal.

The headphones go relatively far into the ear canal so that the foam insert can close them well. If you do not like this feeling at all, then you should look for other ears.

When you enter the WF-1000XM4, it feels weird at first, after about a minute it’s comfortable in the ear – even after long periods of wear. Sometimes this is almost too convenient. When I was on the road for a long time, I would sometimes find myself holding my ear to check if the receiver was still in place (verb).

WF-1000XM4 is sweat-resistant. But it is not waterproof. So swimming with them falls into the water anyway. During intense exercise, you should carefully feel whether the ears remain stable in the ear or not. A fun running session might be okay, and an intense fitness workout might not be.

Battery life up to 12 hours

Wearing comfort for a longer period is useless if the battery is not working. Fortunately, it does with the WF-1000XM4. With noise canceling activated, there are up to 8 hours Run time is possible. There is power in the charging case for another 16 hours. Warning: If you use the DSEE Extreme function, which is a downsampling process to improve the sound quality of low-resolution audio files, the battery life drops to about 6 hours.

You get the longest uptime if you deactivate DSEE Extreme and noise canceling. here up to 12 hours Playtime in the headphones and power for another 24 hours in the charging case. If the headphones run out of power at an inopportune time: 5 minutes in the charging case are enough for up to 60 minutes of listening to music.

Operation by touch sensor

An ear transplant is rarely good. This was also noticeable with the previous model of these headphones. The WF-1000XM4 now reacts faster and more accurately. Swipe gestures are not used, which is good considering the small touch surface. controlled by Click and hold.

In the app, the required controls for the left and right headphones can be selected from 3 presets: playback control, volume control and ambient noise. If you are afraid to inadvertently run commands and prefer to control everything via smartphone and app anyway, you can deactivate the touch functions of one or both headphones.

Intelligent functions that help control

Headphones have one Learn to wear clothes. If you take it out of your ears, the song will stop automatically. Other practical functions can be activated in the application. If the headphones recognize that you are speaking, it will automatically turn off the playback and turn it into a ‘swipe’. External sounds are amplified by microphones so you can understand the other person’s answer without having to take the headphones out of your ear.

The “Adaptive Noise ControlThe power of the excellent active noise suppression is automatically adjusted or the surrounding noise is amplified. If you are walking outdoors, it is reduced so that you can hear the traffic. If you are running, it is reduced even more because higher speed means you have less time to respond to traffic. If you are sitting still or on the train, it will be activated to the maximum so that you can enjoy the music without being disturbed.

Ideally, adaptive noise control parameters should be modified in the application. she can in 20 steps You can also add your own locations, where you can then switch to a purpose-created profile (home, work, fitness studio…) and the corresponding settings. In addition to, “Focus on the soundIt can be activated to emphasize these noises and suppress other noises. Auto Wind Noise Reduction can also be activated. You should only use this if it is windy enough that it burns your ears.

However, the GPS-based system does not work perfectly. If you stop at a red light, it switches from “go” to “linger”, which is why the music stops briefly. Seconds later, the same game again when you leave. Sometimes there is also a switch on the bus or subway and the music pauses, for example when the subway is at the station a little longer. However, it is more convenient to use the function rather than manually adjusting noise suppression via the application.

Awesome noise canceling

For earphones, the quality of active noise cancellation is amazing. Not only is the usual deep noise well filtered, but the mixed street and daily office life noise is also effectively attenuated. However, they can’t keep up with the big over-the-ear sibling model WH-1000XM4 when it comes to noise suppression in the heights.

The advantage of active noise cancellation is that you don’t have to play music out loud to understand something well. I managed to participate in a quiet podcast on the subway 40 percent Hear the sound clearly. Have to go with other wireless earbuds without active noise canceling 70 to 80 percent Hear the maximum volume.

Also undisputed in terms of sound quality

Spoiled by the big WH-1000XM4, I didn’t expect any miracles for the WF-1000XM4 – but then I was surprised at the sound quality that comes from the little things.

With so many in-ear headphones, you can easily tell the volume is minimal – where does that come from, given the compact design? WF-1000XM4 But it’s so vocally fuzzy. subordinate The sound seems complete than other earphones. It is very easy to separate sounds, instruments, and effects vocally. This also gives lows, mids, and highs more room to reveal them.

Sisters: WH-1000XM4 and WF-1000XM4

The standard profile corresponds well to the average use. Despite the clean separation described above, there is strong bass and the packing sound ensures that nothing sounds sterile. Even on old songs that have been in your playlist for years, you can hear things you wouldn’t have noticed with other headphones.

Because it’s in the standard profile Highlight the sounds Works well with TV series and movies. Games take advantage of full audio. Only with podcasts can some of the sounds appear to be very clear and therefore very loud.

In-app audio adjustments

Whoever wants can do different things Toneprofile Try it in the app and use a file Equalizer modify. There’s extra bass control, so the deep tone pals can get extra oomph without a lot of trial and error.

In the application you can still find the aforementioned DSEE XtremeOne must use it. Low-resolution audio files are refined by downsampling, which works very well. when “Bluetooth connection quality“You can choose the priority ‘steady connection’ or ‘audio quality’. Here you should choose the sound quality only if you mainly use the headphones indoors. Otherwise, the leakage happens again and again outdoors near busy roads.

It also supports the ear in the ears360 Reality AudioTo use this you have to analyze your ears via the app. The function promises sound that comes from all directions. However, this only works for certain tracks of music that are only available in certain apps. Currently they are Artist ConnectionAnd nugs.netAnd Tides And 360 by Deezer. Since the selection of songs out there with 360 Reality Audio is still small, it will not pay off to have a subscription to these services.

Weakness in hadiths

Voice calls with headphones aren’t perfect. You can understand your conversation partner well thanks to the noise canceling feature, but you can only be heard in an agreeable way. Often comes the sound lump thing More because the headphones activate the microphones only when you are actually speaking. This saves unnecessary background noise for the conversation partner. However, if you speak quickly, several words can be cut off at the beginning of the sentence.

Another weak point is that the headphones cannot connect to multiple Bluetooth devices at the same time. In the world of “everything is mobile”, it would be appropriate to have internal speakers connected to smartphones and laptops at the same time.

conclusion

The WF-1000XM4 (€279) Record in the places that matter most with modern earbuds: sound quality, noise suppression, and battery life. Especially with the first two points, hardly a competitor model comes close to the WF-1000XM4 – and if so, then only at one point and not both at the same time.

For Android users who appreciate the best sound quality and are willing to pay a lot for it, the WF-1000XM4 is the best choice. In terms of performance, the WF-1000XM4 is also better than them AirPods Pro, which also costs 279 euros. However, the difference is not so great that Apple users will want to give up the convenience of their ecosystem.

Technical data on the manufacturer’s website

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