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Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3
Retail price: $249.95
What we like
What we don't like
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3
The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 have a lot to live up to as a new flagship pair of true wireless earbuds, from sound quality to active noise-cancelling (ANC). With an already strong lineup of wireless earbuds and headphones, Sennheiser adds a lot more to bolster the Momentum True Wireless 3. We tested the Momentum True Wireless 3 for about a week, and here’s what we think.
Who are the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 for?
- People with extra cash to spare will enjoy the great sound and customization in the Sennheiser Smart Control app.
- Buyers who want all the conveniences of wireless earbuds will like the Momentum True Wireless 3.
What’s it like to use the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3?
The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 are an update to the Momentum True Wireless 2. They come in a tweed case with a USB-C port (and USB-C cable), and four sets of silicone ear tips, ranging from 10mm to 15mm in diameter. The Momentum True Wireless 3 also have three sets of silicone stabilizers that help keep the earbuds in your ears. The ear tips and stabilizers are really easy to swap out and don’t require any force.
The earbuds and case are a bit chunky, and everything feels solid and sturdy. The earbuds have IPX4 water resistance, so they can handle some sweat or splashes of water. While this means they are fine to work out in, they don’t quite fit well enough for something as vigorous as a jog. After about two hours, the earbuds did cause some discomfort, but they should be great for regular daily use like walks, commutes, and working in an office.
The earbuds have touch controls on the flat exterior of the housing, and they’re easy to control with relatively few issues. The only time I had misfires with touch controls was when I removed the buds and had them in my hands; usually just something like paused audio starting again.
Pairing takes some time to set up, as Sennheiser advises you to quick-charge the buds for 30 seconds after you unbox them. You may need to update the firmware too.
See also: Headphone buying guide
Should you download the Sennheiser Smart Control app?
It’s definitely a good idea to download the Sennheiser Smart Control app to get the full range of experiences from these buds. Here, you’ll have access to important firmware updates, your connected devices, a three-band equalizer, Sound Check (which lets you test custom EQ presets), Transparency settings, Adaptive Noise Cancellation, “Sound Zones,” and Touch Controls.
Adaptive Noise Cancelling is a feature that turns active noise-cancelling on and off, and has an Anti Wind mode, which works quite well. Transparency mode allows you to have environmental sound come in for increased awareness of your surroundings, and the Momentum True Wireless allow you to not only turn this on and off, but also lets you choose whether it’s on with music, and on when you pause music. It also lets you control just how much environmental sound can come in.
Sound Zones is a really interesting feature, which allows you to customize ANC and EQ settings for different physical locations, like your home or workplace. Once you enter the radius as set on your location map, your settings will automatically change to the saved setting for that Sound Zone. You can also set what happens when you leave a zone. When you enter a new Sound Zone, you get a notification so you don’t get caught off guard. You’ll need a Sennheiser account to access these settings and consent to more data collection.
How do you connect the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3?
The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 come equipped with support for the aptX, aptX Adaptive, AAC, and SBC Bluetooth codecs. In the settings section of the Smart Control app, you can see which codec your device is using. This suite of codecs are great for people using iOS or Android, since AAC is the ideal codec if you’re using an iPhone, and aptX is the high-quality option for Android.
Read more: Bluetooth codecs 101
Connection over aptX is mostly stable, and starts to experience issues after about eight meters. A few connection drops can occur no more than one meter away as well, which is surprising.
Pairing the Momentum True Wireless 3 should be simple, since they automatically enter pairing mode when you remove both buds from the case, indicated by a flashing red and blue LED. If this doesn’t happen automatically, place the buds in your ears and hold down on each touchpad for three seconds to trigger pairing mode.
How long does the battery last on the Momentum True Wireless 3?
In SoundGuys‘ standardized battery testing, the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 lasted five hours, 33 minutes on a single charge. The case also holds an additional three charges, totaling 22 hours of battery. This is reasonably good for a pair of true wireless earbuds. You can charge the earbuds via USB, or with a Qi wireless charging pad. A 10-minute quick charge provides an hour of battery life to the buds.
Is the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 noise-cancelling any good?
The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 are great at canceling out noise. Passive isolation is impressive, so long as you get a secure fit in your ears with the right size silicone ear tips. These earbuds notably can block a good amount of lower frequency noise, which can be a struggle for passive isolation.
Active noise-cancelling (ANC), which Sennheiser labels as “Adaptive Noise Cancelling” in the Smart Control app, is great too. It’s more than sufficient for your commute or when you want to focus in your office.
How do the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 sound?
Overall, the Momentum True Wireless 3 have a pleasant frequency response. Compared to SoundGuys’ house curve (pink line), the Momentum True Wireless 3 (cyan line) only really have a significant difference in the higher frequencies.
The under-emphasis in the treble range means that you will hear everything in the mids and lows really well, and you won’t experience ear fatigue from too much treble. However, make sure not to turn up the volume higher to hear the treble range; if you want more of it, just use the Smart Control app equalizer to adjust it. The app doesn’t tell you which exact frequencies you can adjust, but you can tinker with the treble slider until you like how it sounds.
How is the microphone on the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3?
The Momentum True Wireless 3 are okay for phone calls, but not much else. Voices are captured with some under-emphasis in the highs and lows, and if you have background noise, lows are filtered out heavily. Your voice will be audible, but things like keystrokes or car sounds will come through.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 microphone demo (Ideal):
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 microphone demo (Street):
How does the microphone sound to you?
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: The verdict
Sennheiser is aiming for the top tier with the Momentum True Wireless 3, in both price and specs. They might be too expensive for people who just want the basics like good sound and ANC, but if you want few compromises when looking for true wireless earbuds, you won’t have to make many with the Momentum True Wireless 3.
While connection isn’t totally steady, it’s possible a firmware update could resolve this issue. Thankfully, the touch controls work well, as does in-ear detection. Those who don’t want to sign over more personal data will miss out on the Sound Zones feature, which means it might not be the right choice for you anyway. Sennheiser would do well to implement a more comprehensive equalizer as well.
In comparison to the previous models, the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2, there are a lot of commonalities. However, the Momentum True Wireless 3 bring aptX Adaptive, better ANC, and better battery life, so if you were stuck between the two, the Momentum True Wireless 3 definitely perform better.
What are the best Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 alternatives?
The Sennheiser CX Plus True Wireless ($179) are a good option if you want great ANC and sound without the extras like Sound Zones. They’re similar in shape to the Momentum True Wireless 3, and have a similar frequency response at a lower price. They also have aptX and AAC, so you don’t need to compromise on Bluetooth sound quality.
If you’re looking for a premium option, the Sony WF-1000XM4 ($279) are worth considering. The sound is a little wonky out of the box, but you can alter it using the equalizer in the Sony Headphones app. They have amazing ANC, and use the AAC and LDAC codecs. The earbuds also come with Sony 360 Reality Audio as a built-in surround sound feature.
If you don’t care much about noise-cancelling but want good sound and a better equalizer, try the Shure Aonic Free ($199). They have a great frequency response, and a super nuanced equalizer in the ShurePlus Play app. Instead of ANC, they have excellent isolation to quiet down a lot of noise. They also have transparency mode, and support aptX and AAC like the Momentum True Wireless 3.