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Sony WH-1000XM5: Revised WH-1000X headphones arrive nearing the US$400 mark with better noise cancellation, more microphones and a bulkier design

The new generation of WH-1000X headphones retails for US$50 more than the WH-1000XM4. (Image source: Sony)
The new generation of WH-1000X headphones retails for US$50 more than the WH-1000XM4. (Image source: Sony)
Sony has introduced the WH-1000XM5, a long-awaited upgrade over the WH-1000XM4. With a new look and improved hardware, the WH-1000XM5 should be a decent upgrade over the WH-1000XM4, were it not for its US$50 higher price tag and its impractical design.

Sony has unveiled the WH-1000XM5, an evolution of the WH-1000XM4 that has been almost two years in the making. As leaks suggested, Sony has overhauled its WH-1000X headphones this time around, having made minor visual changes between the WH-1000XM3 and WH-1000XM4. Specifically, the WH-1000XM5 resemble the Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 more than the WH-1000XM4 in many senses.

Additionally, Sony has taken a leaf out of Apple's book by making the WH-1000XM5 impossible to fold. As such, Sony's latest WH-1000X headphones ship with a large case, arguably making them less travel-friendly than the WH-1000XM4. Still, Sony claims to have improved active noise cancellation and microphone quality with the XM5s, particularly at higher frequencies in the case of the former.

(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)

Moreover, Sony has replaced its trust 40 mm drivers with 30 mm alternatives. Supposedly, these new drivers provide better bass production than their predecessors while also delivering a more natural sound overall. MKBHD and The Verge reinforce Sony's marketing. However, they both give the impression that the WH-1000XM5 is another iteration on the WH-1000X series, with no major upgrades from the WH-1000XM4.

These changes come at an increased cost relative to the WH-1000XM4 too. As Jon Prosser reported last week, the WH-1000XM5 retail for US$399.99, US$50 more expensive than the WH-1000XM4. Unsurprisingly, Sony will continue to sell the WH-1000XM4, but at its US$349.99 launch price. The WH-1000XM5 will begin shipping on May 20 and is orderable in other markets, like the Eurozone and the UK.  

Purchase the Sony WH-1000XM5 on Amazon

(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)
(Image source: Sony)

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Alex Alderson
Alex Alderson - Senior Tech Writer - 5721 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2018
Prior to writing and translating for Notebookcheck, I worked for various companies including Apple and Neowin. I have a BA in International History and Politics from the University of Leeds, which I have since converted to a Law Degree. Happy to chat on Twitter or Notebookchat.
contact me via: @aldersonaj
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2022 05 > Sony WH-1000XM5: Revised WH-1000X headphones arrive nearing the US$400 mark with better noise cancellation, more microphones and a bulkier design
Alex Alderson, 2022-05-12 (Update: 2022-05-12)