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