Sony WH-1000XM3 vs Sony WH-1000XM4 – Which Headphone Perform Better?

Are you on the lookout for noise-canceling headphones? Then we have some good news for you. It could end today, with the Sony models. There is no doubt that Sony has powered itself to a position in the noise cancellation segment with its noise-canceling models.

Today, we will be doing a comparison review on the Sony – WH-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Cancelling Over-the-Ear Headphones vs the Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless Premium Noise Canceling Overhead Headphones.

A few years, the manufacturer released the Sony WH-1000XM3 headphone. It became a huge success among the masses because of its noise cancelation capability. But they also happen to release the Sony WH-1000XM4 model too.

The only way to find out is by doing an in-depth analysis of both models. The Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones are immensely lightweight. This is something that Sony has mastered over the years.

When you look at their headphone lineup, almost all of them are opulently designed. Besides, the noise canceling feature provided in the model is as good as the WH-1000XM4 model. That is what users have commended the product for.

Based on our research we are yet to find anybody owning both the models. It makes perfect sense to read through the review that we have prepared for you. This will help you narrow down your choice.

The newer Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones being the latest unit have a lot going on for themselves. We have to say that they are a colossal step from the predecessor, the WH-1000XM3 headphone.

It provides you with a top-notch noise cancellation feature and intense call quality. The quality of music is also eloquent because of the DSEE Extreme. It also comes with a built-in sensor to pause the music when you remove it.

There is also the Bluetooth 5.0, and the multi-point Bluetooth pairing. It is a value product because they are priced on par with the WH-1000XM3. Isn’t it interesting to note? Though the scale moves towards the newer model, you can have many things to tilt your decision to the WH-1000XM3.

It is not that bad a headphone. Yes, a few features are missing and can be bought cheaper than the new unit. When you are not able to make up your mind on the models, then this review will help you do that.

Let us without wasting any time dive into the post between these two fabulous products. We have mentioned the winner at the end of the post.

Sony WH-1000XM3Sony WH-1000XM4
Sony WH-1000XM3Sony WH-1000XM4
The model has a lightweight design.

The unit comes with the robust build quality.

It comes infused with a powerful HD noise-canceling processor QN1.

It offers you phenomenal 1.57″ drivers with Liquid Crystal Polymer (LCP) diaphragms.

The product has a remarkable battery life of 30 hours.
The unit has a sublime noise canceling with dual noise sensor technology.

The model comes with a top-notch edge-AI for opulent sound.

It offers you touch sensor controls to perform a wide range of functions.

It provides you with a speak-to-chat technology that decreases the volume during calls.

The product has an extraordinaire battery life with a quick charging of 10 minutes.
The headphones lack many features compared to other models.The headphone is priced too expensive under $400.

Sony WH-1000XM3 vs Sony WH-1000XM4: Design & Comfort

The Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones come with a classic appearance. You can notice that the headband of the unit comes with a two-tone finish. Besides, you can find that it has a pleather coating.

They are infused on the earpads. Though they are not as plush as the ones found on the earlier model, the Sony WH-1000XM2 unit, they are quite sleek. You will want to know that the earcups present on the model are quite similar to them.

Our tester felt that the accents around the vents are quite opulently done. They are quite comfortable because of the padding done on them. Not to mention, the design of the headband is soft and comfortable.

It can fit the shape of your head eloquently. That results in lesser fatigue when you wear them for lengthy listening hours. You can find better comfort in the Bose QuietComfort 35 II & QC35 II Wireless 2018.

The Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones come with a good design & comfort. However, when you look at them, they will appear the same as the WH-1000XM3 model. Unless you wear them on your head, you won’t be able to know the difference.

We felt that the headband is somewhat sleeker in this unit. It is possible due to the extremely soft earpads and relief of the pressure off your ears. They are foamed with urethane which helps in evenly distributing the pressure.

Moreover, they also increase the earpad to provide a solid fitting. Our tester felt that it is a second to none headphone when it comes to the weight, improving the listening experience. They come with a slightly matte finish.

It is extremely comfortable to put on and nicely padded. You can wear them for extended listening sessions without having to feel any issues. You do not feel any sort of pressure on your ears or your head.

For opulent comfort, you may want to consider the Bose QuietComfort 45/QC45 Wireless.

Sony WH-1000XM3 vs Sony WH-1000XM4: Build Quality

The Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones come infused with the stupendous build quality. The model appears solid and robust. They can withstand a few falls easily. Besides, the headband design comes flexible which ensures it does not break quickly.

Like we mentioned in the above segment, the earcups are quite thick ensuring proper padding. But the headband comes with a pleather material that may not be durable. The hinge & yoke design may break down effortlessly.

The features present on the headphone is awesome. You can make use of the touch controls to perform a wide range of activities. We found the sensors on this model to be extremely sensitive.

It can cause some accidental nudges and brushes. They still feel more premium than the Bose QuietComfort 35 II and the QC35 II Wireless 2018. You can wear them for mild physical activity. Moreover, the earcups come moderately heavy and they come out of the sides of the head.

The Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones come with the robust build quality. It is almost on par with the earlier model. They give you a top-notch feel and a premium appearance to them. You will notice that the headband is sturdy, and the hinge design is not that vulnerable to the XM3.

You would be glad to know that the WH-1000XM4 does not come with those accidental brushes. The maker has taken the matter seriously and corrected it extremely well. Sadly, they might have taken things too far because at times the touch controls do not respond at all.

There is no cause for concern. The model works just fine. It is stable and you can have them on your head performing low-intensity movements. Consumers might not want higher-intensity movements as they can fall from their heads. The portability of the unit is alright and you can take it inside your bag.

Sony WH-1000XM3 vs Sony WH-1000XM4: Audio Performance

It all now comes down to the audio performance of the models. Perhaps, this might have a say on the outcome. The Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones provide you with opulent audio quality. You can term them phenomenal because of the stupendous ANC fitted in them.

Sony seems to have found the knack of producing awesome headphones embedded with stunning clarity. They only keep getting better. This model offers you optimum bass that has an output of around 5dB.

It means, that vocals and instruments like the guitar, drums, and low-end sounds, come with 50% more volume. Please note that a model that has an increased bass output can be considered consumer-friendly.

The Sony WH-1000XM4 offers you with a powerful sound performance. It is more for the younger generation. We can’t blame Sony for optimizing the headphone for the consumer market.

They need the sales for their production. Likewise, it comes with a lesser boosted bass response. However, the custom EQ profile can be set with the help of the connect app found on the device.

You will be delighted to know that it can filter the low-end sound eloquently. The products that come infused with exceptional passive isolation properties can block high-frequency sound. A top-end headphone comes with the perfect blend of good sealing and excellent ANC.

This model provides you with higher peaks and frequencies. You can hear the sound of the instruments eloquently. Whether you are seated on the subway train or an airplane, you get to hear things better.

You would want to know that the ANC in this headphone is exceeding the quality of other models. We can vouch for that. The battery life on the WH-1000XM4 model is 30 hours. It is the same as the earlier model too.

Though the WH-1000XM4 could last for 20 hours, the WH-1000XM3 was able to go on for 24 hours. That is a whole day on a single charge. They were tested with the noise-canceling switched on.

Having said that, the WH-1000XM3 headphones are a great pair of earphones to own. The sound quality is sublime and when you do not want to upgrade, then they can be yours. Besides, you can find them at discounts too.

The Sony WH-1000XM4 model is the clear winner here with a better ANC capability. Sony is only getting better, and we are not sure about the latest model, the WH-1000XM5 that has been released in the market as we write this post.

Sony WH-1000XM3 vs Sony WH-1000XM4: Microphone Performance

The Sony WH-1000XM3 headphone comes infused with a phenomenal microphone. You can now make use of the quick attention mode. Using that, you can communicate without having to remove the unit.

With the quick attention feature, you can now attend the calls by placing your hand on the model to reduce the volume for a quick talk. The Sony WH-1000XM4 comes with an equally powerful microphone that enables you to have opulent conversations.

Sony WH-1000XM3 vs Sony WH-1000XM4: Compatibility

The Sony WH-1000XM3 headphone provides you with a good connectivity option. It comes with Bluetooth 4.2. Besides, you can also find support for a wide range of codecs. Moreover, there is also the AAC and LDAC.

You can note the support for aptX so that Android users can have a more consistent quality option. The Sony WH-1000XM4 headphone also comes with decent compatibility abilities. Users can find support for Bluetooth multipoint connections, Bluetooth 5.0, and high-quality codecs like AAC and LDAC.

Finding the better model entirely depends on your needs in the connectivity segment. When you use Apple devices, then the latest model would do. However, when you own Android devices, then the earlier unit would suit you better.

You will want to install the Google Assistant app on your device. You will want to know that Google Assistant may not be available in most countries. It requires the pairing of efficient internet connectivity and a smartphone.

Sony WH-1000XM3 vs Sony WH-1000XM4: Price

The Sony – WH-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Cancelling Over-the-Ear Headphones are priced under $350. The good news is that you can find the model priced much lower if you look hard. Several online retailers are offering you plenty of discounts.

However, there is low stock now and you can consider yourself lucky if you find it on the shelf. It comes infused with premium sound quality with powerful 1.57″ drivers. You can note that it has Liquid Crystal Polymer (LCP) diaphragms.

It can reproduce frequencies of up to 40 kHz. Consumers will be delighted to know that the unit is extremely comfortable to wear. With the help of the model, you can easily attend to your calls using hands-free phone calls with a double-tap.

A notable feature in this model is the quick attention mode that helps you to communicate without having to remove the unit. The Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless Premium Noise Canceling Overhead Headphones are priced under $350.

The unit provides you with a premium noise-canceling that comes infused having dual noise sensor technology. There is also remarkable music with Edge-AI that has been developed in partnership with Sony Music Studios Tokyo.

The headphone provides you with a 30-hours battery working life along with quick charging. Within 10 minutes, your model can work for 5 hours of playback music. Both the models have been priced aggressively for the pricing. They are priced similarly, but you can get the WH-1000XM3 slightly cheaper.

Sony WH-1000XM3 vs Sony WH-1000XM4: Verdict

We have ended the comparison review between the Sony – WH-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Cancelling Over-the-Ear Headphones vs the Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless Premium Noise Canceling Overhead Headphones.

You will want to decide on the models based solely on your requirements and preferences. That is because, they are both almost the same in design, features, and audio specifications. However, the WH-1000XM4 comes embedded with more features.

The Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones are a fantastic option for quality headphones. However, we found it slightly weird that they both are priced almost similarly. The model comes designed well, and the noise-canceling works well.

You really may find too much of a difference between the two models. If at all, there is a difference, it is very mild. It is just that the WH-1000XM4 being the newer model comes a little bit better in everything.

The Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones are an exceptional option for top-notch headphones. It performs a wide range of tasks that the predecessor can do effortlessly. However, you will want to know that the tradeoffs don’t have to mean enhancements.

It does not come with aptX meaning you have to use the LDAC for proper live streaming. When you are somebody who is irked by these minor, but important changes, then you might as well opt for the earlier model.

But if you use Apple devices, then it should be a bother for you at all. Additionally, the sound quality in the model is second to none. It comes infused with tremendous potential and character ensuring that you have proper settings for Sony’s companion app.

The WH-1000XM3 model could be the better headphone because it has Bluetooth aptX and is much cheaper. The WH-1000XM4 unit comes with a new Bluetooth version, it has 2 more microphones and more battery power.

You can also find that it has live Bluetooth connections and an accelerometer. Our winner in our comparison review between the Sony WH-1000XM3 vs Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones is the WH-1000XM4.

The model comes with several features not present in the cheaper WH-1000XM3 unit. It offers you additional talk-through control options, supports multi-device pairing, and has longer battery life. But the WH-1000XM3 model is ideal for listening to music & watching movies.

James Smith has always been intrigued by electronic products since his childhood. After his post graduation in electronics from a popular university, he decided to pursue a career in the electronics sector. But his calling for writing about these marvellous pieces of work got the better of him. That is how UBG was started. With a writing career spanning more than 12 years, James has worked on several hundred product reviews. During his free time, he like to spend time with his pet dog and relax in the swimming pool.