Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 review: These earbuds beat out AirPods Pro

The new Momentum Real Wi-fi two earbuds ship in April for $300. David Carnoy/CNET When

The new Momentum Real Wi-fi two earbuds ship in April for $300.


David Carnoy/CNET

When they arrived out in 2018, the Sennheiser Momentum Real Wi-fi were among the finest-sounding actually wireless earbuds, if not the finest-sounding. They were being not devoid of some flaws, however. The buds’ batteries would drain when in the case, so if you didn’t cost the case for four times, you could end up with a lifeless set of earbuds, which was bothersome. They were being also a tad significant, so some men and women complained of distress just after getting them in their ears for a when. And at $300, they were being quite pricey.

Like

  • Great audio
  • Lively sound cancellation
  • Marginally lesser style and design, a lot more relaxed suit
  • Boosted battery lifetime (7 several hours)
  • Greater for creating phone calls
  • Transparency mode

You should not Like

  • Expensive
  • No wireless charging
  • May not suit everyone’s ears equally very well

The second-era Momentum Real Wi-fi two, accessible now for preorder and shipping in April, continue to have that elevated $300 (£279 300 euros) rate. But they’re much better all all around, with a slightly lesser, a lot more relaxed style and design, lively sound canceling that rivals that of the AirPod Pro, enhanced battery lifetime (up to 7 several hours vs . the original’s four) and much better sound reduction in the course of phone calls. And, if you do not like them in black, a white variation is slated to stick to afterwards this 12 months. Most importantly, although, the Momentum Real Wi-fi two have the identical stellar audio — for real wireless earbuds, anyway — presenting clearly exceptional audio good quality to the AirPods Pro. That makes them arguably the finest real wireless earbuds on the industry nowadays and earns them a CNET Editors’ Option Award.

That claimed, they’re not automatically for every person. Aside from the fact that they’re highly-priced — $fifty a lot more than the AirPods Pro — they’re heavier, not really as relaxed to dress in and lack the arms-free of charge Siri uncovered on those people Apple styles. And, when Sennheiser shrank the new earbuds by 2mm, the Momentum Real Wi-fi two are continue to on the larger aspect and might not be a best match for some people’s ears. Individually, they suit my ears really very well and I acquired a limited seal from the greatest ear suggestion (three dimensions are provided). As I claimed, I felt that the slightly lesser style and design does help — I was in a position to dress in these devoid of a difficulty for long stretches.

Read through a lot more: The finest real wireless earbuds of 2020

That limited seal is vital for optimizing audio good quality and sound cancellation. The AirPods Pro have adaptive sound canceling. The sound canceling on the Momentum Real Wi-fi two isn’t going to appear to be to be adaptive, but it is efficient. In the options menu, it claims, “One-mic ANC lowers low-frequency ambient sound,” introducing that activating the feature does have an “influence on battery lifetime.” In other terms, do not count on to get 7 several hours if you have it on, especially if you participate in your new music at greater volumes. The charging case does present an added three charges (21 several hours) on the go and Sennheiser has preset the difficulty with the buds’ battery draining in the case — they now go into a deep snooze mode. 

The buds are 2mm lesser than the originals and the case is a darker shade of grey.


David Carnoy/CNET

I wore the Momentum Real Wi-fi two all around the streets of New York and in the subway for a pair of times. You get some passive sound cancellation from just receiving a limited seal, but when I toggled the sound canceling on and off when using the subway, the difference was instantly evident. It appeared to be on par with the AirPods Pro’s sound canceling for muffling ambient sound. I didn’t try out them on a aircraft, but I imagine they would be very good for that atmosphere as very well.

Read through a lot more: Most effective-sounding wireless earbuds: Sony, Sennheiser and a lot more as opposed

Like the originals, these have touch controls and they operate very well, though I like Apple’s stem-squeezing controls on the AirPods Pro a minimal much better. You can application the touch controls in Sennheiser’s Smart Management app for iOS and Android. For occasion, I set the tap-and-hold gesture on the appropriate earbud to activate sound canceling. The identical gesture on the left earbud activates a transparency mode that permits ambient audio in so you can have a conversation when sporting them.


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Sennheiser is just not promoting these as sports earphones, but with an IPX4 rating they are splashproof and should be sweatproof. I was in a position to go working devoid of them falling out of my ears and they’re absolutely fine for lighter workout routines at the health and fitness center. I won’t be able to explain to you how very well they’re going to hold up over time if you sweat on them a whole lot, but they should be in a position to set up with some moisture devoid of a difficulty.

Like the originals, the earbuds have volume controls on the earbuds on their own employing the default tap-and-hold gesture. On the other hand, just after I adjusted the tap-and-hold gesture to activate ANC — as an alternative of manage volume — I couldn’t change the gesture back again to controlling volume (I experienced to reset the controls back again to their default options). The app I was employing was labeled as beta, and I believe this bug will be preset in an update.  

The earbuds are continue to a minimal bit on the significant aspect, but they suit a lot more easily.


David Carnoy/CNET

A pair of other options are worthy of mentioning. You can pick out to activate sidetone, a feature I like that permits you to hear your voice in the earbuds and modulate your voice when you might be creating a call. And there is an equalizer in the app to tweak bass and treble concentrations to your liking. For reasons of this assessment I left it at the default location, which appeared perfectly very good to me. 

Sennheiser additional a microphone to every single earbud for the sound canceling and there is a beamforming microphone in every single earbud to decide on up your voice when creating phone calls or employing your voice assistant. The call general performance is enhanced from the originals’, with much better sound reduction so men and women can hear you much better in noisy environments (ambient sound is muffled although continue to current). I’m not guaranteed these are really as very good as the AirPods when it comes to call good quality, but they performed very well general in this division.

I also skilled minimum Bluetooth hiccups — the wireless link was mainly sound. They use Bluetooth 5.1, with assistance for AAC and aptX audio codes (only sure Android telephones assistance aptX streaming). And I didn’t have any troubles with audio syncing effectively when looking at online video apps like Netflix, YouTube and Vudu.

The case has USB-C but not wireless charging.


David Carnoy/CNET

The Momentum Real Wi-fi two earbuds have the identical 7mm dynamic drivers as the originals. If there are some slight gains in audio good quality, it’s a lot more possible because of to much better digital processing as a result of chip and computer software upgrades. As I claimed, audio good quality is great and the Momentum Real Wi-fi two has richer, a lot more detailed audio than the AirPods Pro with very well-defined bass, purely natural-sounding mids and some sparkle in the treble. These audio like top quality headphones should. They are quite open up the audio isn’t going to sense trapped in your head.

I rated the Sony WF-1000XM3 earbuds extremely for audio, although they’re not wonderful for creating phone calls. The Momentum Real Wi-fi two are a minimal a lot more detailed and articulate. On very well-recorded tracks you can seriously hear every single instrument they do not mix in with every single like with a whole lot of Bluetooth headphones. Other higher-end styles like the Master & Dynamic MW07 Moreover ($300) also have clean, properly detailed audio with very good bass definition, as very well as some sound cancellation, but the Real Wi-fi two have much better style and design and headset general performance alongside with slightly much better audio and a lot more efficient sound cancellation. 

The case charges by means of USB-C, while at this rate you’d like to see wireless charging, but that is not a significant omission. The AirPods Pro absolutely have an desirable style and design and feature set with sturdy general performance, but they’re simply not in the Sennheiser Momentum Real Wi-fi 2’s league for audio good quality. And now that Sennheiser has additional lively sound canceling and preset some of the primary Momentum Real Wireless’ small flaws, these are the earbuds to get if you worth audio good quality over anything else.