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Sony debuts WH-1000XM4 Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones

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Goh Beng Yeow
Goh Beng Yeow
Goh Beng Yeow, the Founder / Editor at Porta-Fi™, is a recipient of the IT Youth Award in Singapore. Twice nominated for EY Entrepreneur of the Year Awards, Beng Yeow has previously founded startups such as, Coded Pixels Consultants and was a Tech writer for TODAY, a national daily newspaper under MediaCorp. Since 2017, he has been writing, editing and producing commentaries, interviews, news and reviews on Porta-Fi™. In 2019, Beng Yeow was appointed Advisor to LHDC™, the industry's latest low latency and high-definition Bluetooth audio codec.

Sony today announced the WH-1000XM4, its 4th generation over-ear wireless noise-cancelling headphones in the company’s award-winning 1000X family. A direct successor to the WH-1000XM3, the headphones offer all the much-loved technologies from its hugely popular predecessor and delivers several enhancements that allow one superior sound experience. These include additional intelligent features that enable one to personalise and control the music playback, improve noise-cancellation, as well as adjust ambient sound automatically following one’s preferences, according to the Japanese tech giant.

Similar to its predecessor, the WH-1000XM4 feature Dual Noise Sensor technology that captures ambient noise via the two microphones in each ear cups and then passes the sound data to the QN1 HD noise-cancelling processor which was first introduced in the WH-1000XM3. Coupled with a new Bluetooth Audio SoC (System on Chip), the QN1 utilises a new algorithm to apply noise-cancelling processing in real-time. This implementation has allowed the headphones to better the noise-cancelling performance of the WH-1000XM3, enhancing the cancelling of low-frequency noise as well as the reduction of mid to high-frequency noise. It is effectively allowing one to focus on the music sans the chaos of the outside world. On top of better noise-cancellation, the new headphones come with some notable new features on top of “Adaptive Sound Control” and “Quick Attention” mode, which featured in the predecessor.

Noise Cancelling performance comparison between WH-1000XM4 and WH-1000XM3
Noise Cancelling performance comparison between WH-1000XM4 and WH-1000XM3 (Image Credit: Sony)

“Speak-to-Chat,” allows one to have short conversations without taking the headphones off. Speak, and the headphones will recognise one’s voice, and automatically pause the music, allowing one to conduct a conversation without removing the headphones before resuming shortly after the last spoken word as configured in the Sony | Headphones Connect app. The headphones also feature “Precise Voice Pickup.” The technology controls five of the built-in microphones allowing optimal audio capturing with advanced audio digital signal processing to pick up voices clearly and precisely to support “Speak-to-Chat” as well as hands-free calls.

Speak to Chat - WH-1000XM4
Speak to Chat (Image Credit: Sony)

“Wearing detection,” allows the WH-1000XM4 to detect whether they are being worn and adapts playback accordingly to preserve battery life. Using the built-in proximity sensor and two acceleration sensors, the headphones automatically stops the music when you remove them and resumes playing when you put them on again, ensuring a hassle-free listening experience.

Wearing detection - WH-1000XM4
Wearing detection (Image Credit: Sony)

“Multi-point connectivity,” allows the pairing of two Bluetooth devices to the headphones at the same time. A feature that has long been on the users’ wish-list is now available on the WH-1000XM4 via a firmware upgrade to 2.06. [Updated @ 1300hrs (GMT +8) on 7th of August, 2020.]

The WH-1000XM4 maintains the blend of sophisticated styling with exceptional comfort and light-weight design, as well as a battery life of up to 30 hours with a quick charging function that provides up to five hours of wireless playback after a mere 10 minutes of charging via the contemporary USB-C port.

The Industry-Leading Noise Cancelling wireless headphones WH-1000XM4 headphones will be available in Black and Platinum Silver from 7 August at a suggested retail price of SGD 549 / USD 349.99.

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