Sony WH-1000M4 vs. Sennheiser PXC-550ii



Audioholic Ninja
My journey to find a comfortable wireless headphone with decent sound led me to these two headphones. I know Bose makes a comfortable headphone with a neutral sound signature, but just can’t bring myself to buy a Bose product. In any case, here’s a comparison in case it helps someone in the same boat.

Sennhesier comes in less expensive as this particular model is not meant to compete with the Sony flagship. The Sennheiser Momentum 3 is more a direct competitor to the Sony WH-1000XM4.

Sennheiser weigh a bit less than Sony, but I find Sony more comfortable. It applies a little less pressure on the head and also has slightly larger openings for ears. Sennheiser do not expand as much as Sony so folks with larger heads should avoid.

Sony beats Sennhesier here as Sony packed these headphones with great features. Sennheiser includes the functional basics such as auto pause/start when you take the headphones off, simple adjustments to noise cancelling and sound profile. Sony’s app goes deeper with a graphic EQ, adaptive noise cancellation based on activity and location, auto pause when it detects you speaking, and auto off. One note, Sony turn on by simple holding the power button whereas Sennheiser by rotation the ear cups to listening positioning. Sennheiser offers what one needs, but if you like bells and whistles, Sony represents a better choice.

Sony again wins here as its app works well and reliably. Sennheiser needs to work on their app which is buggy.

Noise Cancellation
Sony does a better overall job particularly with low frequencies, but when it comes to using these around the house, I don’t see a large difference. One note, Sony does seem to put out more white noise with nothing playing, but not noticeable once tunes begin to play.

Up till now, it would seem a slam dunk for Sony, but not so fast as Audioholics place a lot of weight in sound and I have to give this one to Sennheiser. Sony has a graphic EQ, but no matter the tweaks, Sennheiser simply sounds better to my ear. A very good balance of all frequencies along with nice rhythm, punch, and clean sound.

So which will I keep? I place a lot of emphasis on comfort so will probably go with Sony, but really like the sound of Sennhesier. Always something...

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