Sennheiser Momentum true wi-fi earbuds
“Merely put, the Momentum are the best-sounding true wi-fi earbuds you should purchase.”
Easy, heat bass response
Whisper-quiet wi-fi connection
Mediocre battery life
Not totally waterproof
Life on the high of the ever-rising pile of true wi-fi headphones is usually a fickle, short-lived affair. Not way back, we have been praising Grasp & Dynamic’s MW07 as the most effective true wi-fi headphones we’d heard but, and mere months later they have been usurped by a brand new challenger. Whereas the pace of evolution in true wi-fi earbuds could also be stunning, that Sennheiser’s first entry into the area would take high efficiency marks actually isn’t.
Sennheiser’s Momentum true wi-fi earphones now stand alone because the best-in-class true wi-fi buds for sound high quality, whereas including seamless setup, spectacular options, and rock-steady connection to the combination. That’s to not say they’re the only option for everybody, and at $300, they’ll be a troublesome promote for a lot of. Beneath, we’ll show you how to suss out whether or not Sennheiser’s sterling new true wi-fi buds ought to (or shouldn’t) be in your brief checklist.
Out of the field, into your ears
Bobbing proper on the high-water mark for true wi-fi pricing, you’d count on the Momentum to supply a premium expertise from the get-go, and whereas the packaging is decidedly minimalist, they ship. Google’s Pixel Buds helped make cloth circumstances horny (albeit with out going totally wi-fi) and the Momentum’s pill-shaped charging case is paying homage to that. Coated in slick grey threads, it will look proper at house within the pocket of 007’s iconic grey three-piece go well with.
Dan Baker/Digital Traits
Inside, the buds shimmer with Sennheiser’s signature silver emblem alongside their finish caps. Pulling them from their magnetic charging stands units blue and purple lights flashing alongside the matte plastic earpieces, signaling that they’re able to pair. Select them in your telephone’s Bluetooth menu — and presto — you’re up and working. The Momentum additionally auto-pair shockingly quick after setup — so quick you’ll doubtless miss the British voice telling you they’re able to play.
Equipment embrace 4 pairs of silicone eartips and a strikingly brief USB-C twine for charging.
Within the early days of true wi-fi earbuds (i.e., about two years in the past), all we actually needed was a pair that delivered first rate sound and stayed related, however, oh, how occasions have modified. Thanks partly to Apple’s well-designed (and immensely in style) AirPods, people count on extra from true wi-fi earbuds, together with options like seamless pairing, auto-pause when pulling the buds out of your ears, and fast charging for a jolt of juice when you actually need it.
Beautiful audio efficiency that, within the easiest phrases, simply seems like Sennheiser.
The Momentum ship all of that and extra, together with an more and more frequent characteristic, transparency mode, which lets you pipe in ambient sound whilst you jam out. Superior options like Bluetooth 5.zero and Bluetooth LE 5.zero permit the Momentum to supply no notable video lag, unshakable wi-fi connection (we by no means had a single stutter all through testing), and a superbly drawn stereo picture that shrugs off the wobbly stereo channels of so many cheaper fashions.
In contrast to the Grasp & Dynamic buds talked about above, the Momentum go for contact controls to navigate playback, which comes with each professionals and cons. By primary touches, you are able to do every part from tune skip and quantity management to name reception. You may even name up your go-to assistant with a fast faucet on the fitting bud (a held faucet raises quantity), although we discovered ourselves doing so unintentionally greater than we’d like.
Contact controls all the time have their unresponsive moments, however normally, the system works effectively. Ensuring we used your entire pad of our finger, somewhat than simply the tip, made for the most effective contact and constant response. Sennheiser’s Sensible Management app presents additional choices for management, together with Transparency Mode settings and digital EQ to dial in your sound.
Dan Baker/Digital Traits
That’s all excellent news (particularly at this value) as a result of the one place the Momentum don’t totally ship is battery life. At 4 hours of playback per cost, they fall under our favorites like Jabra’s Elite Lively 65T and Apple’s personal AirPods, each of which value so much much less. What’s extra, the case itself solely presents two additional costs (Apple’s presents 4) for 12 complete hours, which means you’ll need to maintain it plugged in pretty typically, which additional irked us that Sennheiser didn’t throw in an extended cable.
On the run
In relation to the match, the buds didn’t squeeze into our ears as tightly as they did the ears of the fashions on Sennheiser’s web site, however swapping out the default eartips for bigger ones resulted in a good seal, permitting for a agency match, and simply as importantly, full bass and a much less snappy treble response.
The Momentum have a whole lot of enjoyable with the high-quality particulars in additional complicated tracks from the likes of Radiohead and Beck
The buds are mild sufficient to remain tight with this technique, which works effectively for primary exercises like a morning jog. Whereas they aren’t essentially the most snug we’ve put in, they work high-quality for longer listening periods, too. At this value, we want Sennheiser would have added full waterproofing, however the headphones do provide IPX4 splash-proofing, so they need to maintain up effectively in all however essentially the most difficult situations.
Whereas removed from good, not one of the Momentum’s pitfalls quantity to an Achilles’ heel, and that’s bolstered when you hear the luscious sound these earbuds serve up. Easy and brawny bass, a wealthy and ruddy midrange, and whistle-clean treble add as much as attractive audio efficiency that, within the easiest phrases, simply seems like Sennheiser. Whereas that could be a pure expectation for the model, on this planet of true wi-fi headphones, it’s saying so much.
Dan Baker/Digital Traits
Maybe one of the notable points of the Momentum sound is the general readability, which is achieved partly due to Bluetooth add-ons like aptX, alongside a clear reference to nearly no audible sign noise. Inside that assemble, the Momentum thrive, delivering fuller element — particularly notable for vocals — and higher instrumental definition than any pair of true wi-fi earbuds we’ve heard but.
Auditioning the Momentum utilizing our go-to testing playlist dug up loads of thrilling moments, from the edgy, unsettling string bows of The Beatles’ Eleanor Rigby, to the nice and cozy and glittering acoustic collage of Fleetwood Mac’s Landslide, to the buzzy electrical distortion in Maybird’s Turning Into Water, during which the guitars virtually dripped with shiny goodness. The earbuds even have a whole lot of enjoyable with the high-quality particulars in additional complicated tracks from the likes of Radiohead and Beck, the place every minute synth warble or digital noticed wave is given each the area to exist and the dynamic expression to develop.
Extra on True Wi-fi Headphones
These moments are made extra accessible due to the Momentum’s spectacular stereo picture, which may’t compete with over-ear headphones, however holds its personal with even some wired earbuds to dig out a clear soundstage that drops devices and vocals neatly in area, each vertically and horizontally.
The one minor gripes we had got here from the far ends of the sound spectrum. The treble register can sometimes get extra wiry and snappy than we’d like, nevertheless it’s a nitpicky critique for essentially the most half, and the problem was made a lot much less obvious after we discovered the fitting eartips for our canal. On the alternative finish, whereas bass is each inflexible and musical, it generally will get just a bit pushy, although fortunately, it by no means clouds the remainder of the soundscape.
On that word, we predict the Momentum will do an ideal job pleasing each bassheads and audiophiles alike. An excellent instance can be the dazzling job the Momentum did with The Weeknd’s Starboy, which completely straddles the road between highly effective and overbearing for an exciting burst of clean vocals and tight beats.
Whereas they’re actually no discount, Sennheiser’s Momentum are the best-sounding true wi-fi earbuds you should purchase, setting a brand new high-water mark within the ever-evolving style. For that motive alone, the Momentum deserve consideration from anybody seeking to dive into the comfort supplied by true wi-fi design, with out having to sacrifice the sort of sound efficiency for which Sennheiser’s storied library of headphones is known.
What are the alternate options
There are scores of true wi-fi fashions obtainable, however fortunately for the sake of brevity, only some we actually like. For a less expensive possibility (and equally scaled-down sound efficiency), Samsung’s Galaxy Buds are a high-quality different, particularly since they provide a full six hours of battery per cost (although solely seven hours within the charging case) and price lower than half the value at $129. For the extra energetic consumer, we additionally suggest testing Jabra’s Elite Lively 65t, which don’t attain the heights of the Momentum’s efficiency, however do provide extra battery life and a extra rugged design for fairly a bit much less cash.
How lengthy will they final?
This … is a difficult query. With the most recent Bluetooth protocols and wonderful construct high quality, we count on the Momentum to carry up for years to come back. The caveat is that we additionally count on earbud makers to noticeably improve battery life in 2019 due to environment friendly new Bluetooth expertise that may as a lot as double the typical playback time per cost.
True wi-fi tech is all the time advancing, much more quickly than different tech segments. Alternatively, ready for the “next-gen” is an train in endurance (and generally futility), and we nonetheless have little thought when the advances will come or how effectively the subsequent fashions will carry out.
Must you purchase it?
When you’re searching for the best possible sound in true wi-fi audio — and also you don’t spend hours and hours away from an outlet — Sennheiser’s Momentum are the brand new buds to beat. Simply ensure you’ve received your bank card useful.
Up to date March 1, 2019: We’ve up to date the copy to deliver it present, in addition to added the brand new Galaxy Buds as a viable (and less expensive) different.