Sony has always been at the forefront when it comes to headphones with active noise cancellation, with the likes of the WH-1000XM4 perhaps one of the best out there in the market. But back in April, there were rumours that Sony was looking to one-up themselves with a successor to their popular headphones. Well, Sony have just revealed said successor, the WH-1000XM5.
Sony WH-1000XM5 pricing and availability
Sony Malaysia has not provided a local price for the WH-1000XM5 headphones just yet, but have confirmed that they will be arriving in Malaysia sometime later in June 2022. However, we may have to expect it to come with a higher price tag than its predecessor, as they cost USD399.99 (~RM1,757.96) in the US. As a comparison, the last generation WH-1000XM4 launched with a retail price of USD349.99 in the US, and in Malaysia went for RM1,599.
Sony WH-1000XM5 specs
The most obvious upgrade here with the Sony WH-1000XM5 is the overall design. Sony has switched things up with a sleeker, cleaner look with the cups in particular now consisting of a single piece. The hinge meanwhile now connects to the cup in a single stem rather than the split design that wrapped around the cup itself on its predecessor. As for the headband itself, it’s a stepless slider with a layer of a newly developed soft fit leather around the headband and the cups itself. The materials used have also been tweaked; the headphones themselves are built out of recycled plastic, while there’s no plastic used in its packaging for a more eco-conscious product.
Hardware-wise, the closed back headphones have 30mm neodymium drivers offering a 4Hz-40,000Hz frequency response with Sony claiming that the 30mm drivers also have improved sound clarity and bass reproduction. Powering it all is the Sony QN1 chip, allowing for even better active noise cancelling then before. Two more processors help control a total of eight microphones for improved noise reduction especially in the mid to high frequency range. An Auto NC Optimiser meanwhile automatically optimises noise cancellation depending on the environment, subtly tweaking things to fit your surroundings whether you’re in a busy train or a quiet cafe. Adaptive Sound control allows the WH-1000XM4 to automatically tailer its sound to fit your situation and adjusts the ambient sound settings accordingly.
Regardless of whether you’re using them with or without wires, you’ll still be able to enjoy high-resolution audio via the Sony LDAC codec. The Sony DSEE Extreme function also means that it’ll restore all your music back to its high range quality, upscaling them in real time to give you hi-res audio. Meanwhile, the WH-1000XM5 also feature 360 Reality Audio Certification allowing you to enjoy a custom immersive music experience with personalisation. As for calls, Sony says its Voice Pickup technology uses four beamforming microphones with AI noise reduction for industry-leading call quality. They have multipoint connection as well, letting you hook it up to two devices at the same time.
If you do end up owning a pair of WH-1000XM5 when it drops in Malaysia in June, you’ll also need to download the Sony Headphones Connect app as is the case with their other headphones and earphones. They come with Google Fast Pair so you can easily link it to your Android device. The app also lets you compare sound pressure data tracked by your headphones with the recommended levels from the World Health Organisation, and lets you know when listening levels are too high. Controlling your headphones meanwhile remains the same, using two or three taps on the side of the headphones. They are Google Assistant and Alexa compatible too, while you can also use the Speak-to-Chat function to quickly stop your music and allow ambient sound in for a conversation.
The WH-1000XM5 are rated to last you for up to 30 hours of battery life, and Sony says that you can get up to 3 hours of use in just 3 minutes of charging time using its optional USB-PD charging brick. That’s actually just the same 30 hours the WH-1000XM4 had, despite earlier rumours suggesting a 40 hour battery life. In the box, the headphones come with a 1.2m headphone cable with a gold-plated L-shaped plug, a USB charging cable as well as a carrying case. The carrying case is a new soft body collapsible case, allowing you to compress the case up to 40% smaller to make it easier to keep in your backpack.
For more information on the Sony WH-1000XM5, you can check out its product page on the Sony website.