Only Sony’s successor, the WH-1000XM5, and the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless beat the Sony WH-1000XM4 – and only just.
In particular, if you compare the WH-1000XM4 directly with the Sony successor, only minor differences are noticeable: Sony has improved the noise canceling in particular with the XM5, although the XM4 also do a very good job here. Wind noise is even more annoying on the new model than on the XM4. In terms of sound quality, it’s hard to say which of the two models performs better. In the test, we like the sound of the XM4 a little better because it comes along a little more lively. The XM5 looks a bit more velvety here.
The Sony WH-1000XM4 are by no means obsolete and are even slightly superior to the successor model in one or the other detail. In addition, the headphones are significantly cheaper than the WH-1000XM5, our current second place on the list.
Our conclusion at the time of testing:
“Great sound, excellent noise-cancelling, high wearing comfort: Sony’s new ANC headband headphones WH-1000XM4 convinced us in the test with a great performance. Compared to the predecessor, Sony has slightly improved the sound and added some practical new features. The noise canceling is a bit more effective than in the already very strong predecessor, and the battery life is also on a very good level. For a high introductory price of 380 euros, Sony leaves little to be desired. At most, some hi-fi fans might miss the aptX audio codec on the feature list.”