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Home / Hot Stuff / Sony WF-1000XM5 in-ears offer astonishing noise cancelling

Sony WF-1000XM5 in-ears offer astonishing noise cancelling

Svelte-looking 'buds also step up on call quality and head tracking spatial sound

Sony WF-1000XM5 hot stuff

Sony already makes some of the very best noise-cancelling headphones that money can buy – but there’s always room for improvement, right?

The Sony WF-1000XM5 are the latest iteration of the firm’s flagship ANC in-ears, and promise to silence the outside world by a significant 20% more than the outgoing (and excellent) WF-1000XM4.

The new model is also 25% smaller and 20% lighter than the XM4, which were already pretty tiddly, yet still find room inside for larger 8.4mm speaker drivers. Sony’s bespoke Dynamic Driver X uses a combo of hard and soft materials to strip out unwanted distortion, and is meant to cover a wider frequency range this time around.

It has dual on-board processors for 24bit audio signal processing and ANC. The latter uses three microphones per ear to listen to your surroundings. Bone conduction sensors and a mesh covering for the feed-forward mic also help cut down on wind noise when making voice calls.

Sony WF-1000XM5 earbuds

A new super small set of ear tips is included in the box, along with small, medium and large sizes, so there’s no excuse for not having a comfortable and secure fit. The buds are IPX4 splash resistant, so will cope just fine with a sweaty gym session or light rain shower.

Naturally the XM5 also has all the goodies we’ve come to expect from a pair of top-tier Sony headphones, including LDAC Bluetooth support for high quality streaming, Multipoint for dual device connectivity, Spotify Tap for quickly resuming your most recent playlist, and head-tracking 360 Reality Audio spatial sound.

Battery life is clocked at 24 hours with ANC on – that’s eight hours from the buds themselves, plus two full top-ups from the compact charging case, which of course supports both wired and wireless charging. Sony reckons a three minute splash and dash can add another 60 minutes of listening time, too.

The Sony WF-1000XM5 will go on sale in August, with prices set at £259/$300/€320.

Profile image of Tom Morgan-Freelander Tom Morgan-Freelander Deputy Editor


A tech addict from about the age of three (seriously, he's got the VHS tapes to prove it), Tom's been writing about gadgets, games and everything in between for the past decade, with a slight diversion into the world of automotive in between. As Deputy Editor, Tom keeps the website ticking along, jam-packed with the hottest gadget news and reviews.  When he's not on the road attending launch events, you can usually find him scouring the web for the latest news, to feed Stuff readers' insatiable appetite for tech.

Areas of expertise

Smartphones/tablets/computing, cameras, home cinema, automotive, virtual reality, gaming