By : Theo @ Samma3a
With the Momentum Wireless we’re getting everything we need for the product. There are a couple of sizes of silicone eartips which should ensure a secure but comfortable ft for most people, and the short Type-C cable seems to be of decent quality.
As is usually the case with these types of products, the Momentum True Wireless has a charging / storage case which is compact enough to lug around in a bag and offers enough power onboard to keep the earbuds charged for a few cycles.
If there’s one thing that Sennheiser knows damn well how to do, then it’s to design good-looking products. Even classic products like the HD600 and HD650 have this truly timeless design.
The Momentum-series of headphones and in ear monitors are some of the best-looking products on the market, and this design trend has been carried over to one of their latest products – the Momentum True Wireless earbuds.
The thing I really like about Sennheiser’s design is how the products are really eye catching, yet this is done without any sense of attention-seeking desperation. In the case of these Momentum True Wireless, we get a mostly-black colour scheme and then then this nice, high-quality spun metal accent.
But, this isn’t just a bit of added design flair, as this metal accent is also equipped with touch sensitivity, meaning you can use this to adjust the volume, play and pause the music, skip tracks, and you can also activate and deactivate the Transparent Hearing feature which we’ll have a look at shortly.
The rest of the housing is made entirely out of plastic, and the only other metal we can see are the charging pins and slightly larger circular magnets which help the earbuds snap into place in the charging case. There is also a small LED on each earbud which is used to show the current status of the earbud. For example, if it’s blue, that means that it is connected to a device, where as if it’s red, that means it’s disconnected. The following table will give you a bit more information.
So, whilst these True Wireless earbuds look really good, the thing that surprised and impressed me the most is the fit. Usually, with these types of products, there is often a compromise between how comfortable they feel in the ear, and how securely they sit. What we’ve seen some manufacturers do is to include little silicon wing hooks to help the earbuds sit more securely.
However, with these Momentum true Wireless earbuds I felt absolutely no need for this. They not only felt super comfortable, but they also sat very securely. Although, I must admit that they only really felt comfortable to me when I opted to use the JVC Spiral Dot eartips.The included tips do the job for keeping them in my ears, but the Spiral Dot tips are just in a league of their own when it comes to comfort. The silicone used on these is considerably softer and they also sit deeper into my ear canals.
As mentioned, the metal accents on each earbud are also touch sensitive, which allows you to make some adjustments without having to do so from your mobile device.
For example, if you wanted to increase the volume, you simply need to touch and hold on the right earpiece, and likewise, if you wanted to reduce the volume you just touch and hold the left earpiece.
You can also control the music playback in a similar way. If you wanted to pause a track, then all you need to do is to give the left earbud a single tap. A double tap would result in skipping to the next track, where as 3 taps would skip back to the previous track.
You can use the same gestures on the right earbud, but these gestures would then be used for various calling functions.
Tapping the right earpiece once will either answer or end a call, whereas ad double tap will reject an incoming call.
The charging case is also one of the nicest, and indeed one of the most compact designs I’ve come across. The outside is wrapped in a light-grey canvas texture which gives it both a very modern as well as a minimalist look. On the rear is a USB Type-C port for charging up both the case and the earbuds, and there’s also a small button which, when pressed, lights up an LED on the other side of the Type-C connector which conveys information about the current battery or charging level, but is also dependant on whether or not the earbuds are in the case. The following table which can be found in the user guide explains what various states of the LED light represent. Opening up the case reveals the earbuds as the are nestled safely in their respective charging docks. As you can see it’s a very minimalist, yet refined design.
As far as the sound quality is concerned, Sennheiser isn’t exactly known for making poor-sounding products, and in the case of the Momentum True Wireless I think they’ve succeeded in creating a product that will be mass appealing. By that I mean that audio aficionados who are looking for great clarity as well as a detailed and balanced signature would not really get along with these.
The overall signature does have a nice sense of warmth to it, but I feel that the bass region is just a bit too bloated. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as I said, this will be mass-appealing signature, just not a particularly great signature.
Those boosted lows tend to bleed into the mids, and so if you’re listening to a track that already has a fair amount of low frequency energy, then you’ll likely soon find the mids sounding a bit muddy and overwhelmed. But, for music that has a more balanced spread throughout the frequency spectrum, those boosted lows don’t tend to sound overly problematic. It’s there, and you can hear that things sound a bit more bassy than usual, but I think it’s kept under a reasonable amount of control.
Vocals do come across as being pushed back a bit, but not so much as to make it seem like the mids have been sucked out.
But, thankfully, the higher frequencies are kept very well under control and I couldn’t really pick up on any annoying sibilance or other unwanted peaks.
Now, I can’t really call this review complete without talking about Sennheiser’s Smart Control mobile app. What this app allows you to do is to check up on the battery level of each individual earbud, as well as enabling some extra features.
The first feature is one I already briefly mentioned, which is called “Transparent Hearing”. Essentially, this works similar to Sony’s Ambient Mode. With this option enabled it allows the microphones on each earbud to capture and process ambient sounds. To some extent this type pf feature usually gives a similar illusion to open-back headphones (in terms of being able to hear external sounds), but oddly enough with the Momentum True Wireless it doesn’t actually give you the perception of a wider stereo image.
Anyways, the point of the Transparent Hearing feature is not to alter the perceived stereo image, but rather to allow you to still hear the outside world should you be in a scenario where you still need to be paying attention to the outside. Perhaps if you’re at an airport or train station and you need to hear your boarding call, then this feature could be quite useful.
But, Sennheiser was a bit clever here, as they gave you two options for this mode. You can either enable this mode and still have the music playing, or the music will pause as soon as you enable it, and then will continue playing when you disable it again. This is pretty cool as it would negate the need to remove them from your ears if you need to listen to an announcement or perhaps someone talking to you.
The other feature that you can adjust form the app is a simple equalizer. But, when I say it’s simple, I really do means it’s super simple. Perhaps even crudely so. I will admit that it kinda looks cool, but it’s probably one of the most unintuitive EQs I’ve ever tried to use.
There’s only a single adjustment point and then you have to kinda drag it around and try to figure out where to put it in order to get the specific EQ shape that you want, and even then it might prove impossible.For example, if I wanted to add just a little bass boost whilst keeping the rest of the frequencies flat, well, you can’t do that. Try as you might, the curve will look different to what you want. Also, there are no reference markings for you to gauge where you want the EQ point to take effect. I really don’t know how the team that built this feature into the app came up with this and thought it was useful.
So, at an asking price of $300, what kind of value does the True Wireless hold. Well, let’s put it this way, the product itself feels incredibly refined. Up until now, every true wireless type of product that I’ve either demo’d or reviewed always just felt a bit like a prototype product to me. Some features didn’t work quite as well as you’d expect or it just felt otherwise underwhelming.
This Momentum True Wireless, on the other hand, actually feels like a product that has been properly designed. No, it’s not going to provide you with an amazing sound, and for that reason I don’t think we should consider it as a replacement for a quality set of in ear monitors. For $300 you could get earphones that sound considerably better from an outright quality perspective, but what if you want all of the features that come with the Momentum True Wireless?
In that instance I think I’d say that the compromise in the sound quality might just be acceptable for what you gain in the features. No, the features aren’t exactly ground-breaking, but they work, and they work consistently.
So yes, $300 is a fair amount of money to spend on earphones. But, for a product like this, and compared to somewhat similar products that are available from other manufacturers, that $300 price-tag does seem justified.
Still, I do wish Sennheiser could have included active noise cancellation as well, especially at this price, but overall I think the Momentum True Wireless is a decent product for the price if you’re looking for a well-designed and comfortable set of earbuds that offer a warmer and more impactful sound signature.