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Review: Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3

On a Quest for Clarity

Sennheiser has once again improved on their best wireless earbuds. Momentum True Wireless 3 is pure bliss.

Karakter
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3
forfatter
Published 2022-04-26 - 9:23 am
Our opinion
Top-notch audio quality, with clear and open, yet entertaining sound. Good noise cancellling and excellent fit.
Lacks multi-point connection
Specifications
  • Type: True wireless earbuds
  • Bluetooth: 5.5
  • Weather proofing: IPX4
  • Codecs: aptX Adaptive, AAC, SBC
  • Battery: 7 t + 28 t fra etui
  • Weight: 2 x 5,5 g + 66 g (etui)
  • Charging: USB-C + trådløs Qi
  • Colors: Svart, grafitt eller hvit
  • Other: Puter i 4 str, ringer i 3 str
  • Web: sennheiser.com

Exactly two years have passed since Sennheiser launched the Momentum True Wireless 2 earbuds, which I without hesitation claimed as my new favorites.They now had active noise cancellation and longer battery life, and the same fabulous audio quality. To this day, not many earbuds can beat the MTW2 in terms of audio quality, Bowers & Wilkins PI7 being a rare exception. And costing 35 percent more than the Sennheisers. The new Momentum True Wireless 3 are lower priced than the predecessor, meaning the price difference between the two competitors is even greater.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 spread 2
The all new Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 sports the aptX Adaptive codec. Photo: Geir Nordby, L&B Tech Reviews

Momentum True Wireless 3

So, what does Sennheiser have up its sleeve this time? After all, the True Wireless 2 didn’t really leave us wanting. Wireless charging of the case could be nice, which is now granted by the MTW3. The Momentums have always had the aptX codec for better audio quality, but this has now evolved into aptX Adaptive. Meaning the bitstream is adapted to fit the audio signal, and you should also experience lower latency when gaming.

Better fit

The Momentum True Wireless 3 has cushions of four different sizes, and for the first time the buds have fins of different sizes, to fit under the antihelix. It really made my day, using the medium sized cushions along with the largest wings. For me, the MTW3 fits even better than its predecessors.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 Graabein
In the reviewer’s ears, the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 fits even better than its predecessors. Photo: Geir Nordby, L&B Tech Reviews

Average latency

Using the app Earbuds Delay Test for Android, the Sennheisers show a latency between  200-300 ms using aptX, a little more using the AAC codec. I get about the same when I check the B&W PI7 and also the Sony WF-1000XM4 (same result with LDAC). But in a game, such as Real Racer 3, I feel that the latency is somewhat lower, even though it isn’t completely gone.

One function that has been removed is NFC pairing. You used to be able to simply hold the charging case to the back of your Android phone for pairing, this is no longer the case. This is only helpful the very first time pairing, and it might not have been used a whole lot by many, since we keep seeing fewer headphones and earbuds with this function.

No multi-point

One thing I do miss, though, is support for multi-point connections. The True Wireless 3 doesn’t have it, even though it’s part of the Bluetooth 5 protocol. The function would let you play music on your phone, and the earphones would automatically connect to the computer if you join a web conference. For example. It’s nice, and it is beyond my comprehension that Sennheiser has left it out.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 white Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 graphite Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 black
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Photo: Sennheiser

Touch control

As always the touch control functions can be customized. Luckily, they can also be deactivated completely. I personally prefer to use the smartphone to do things like scroll through playlists and play/pause music. The only thing I sometimes miss, is the ability to answer and reject calls directly on the earphones.

Noise cancelling

The ANC of the MTW3 does its job in the bass region, while it actually lets high frequency noises, such as keyboard clicks, straight through. Disturbing noises outside is effectively reduced, such as construction work and passing cars, while birds tweeting are actually pretty audible.

it is not a bad way to reduce noise, even though the Sony WF-1000XM4 is ahead of the curve, and also the (in my opinion) quite awful Bose QuietComfort Earbuds beat the Sennheisers in the noise cancelling department. I am, however, in no doubt as to which of the three I prefer. The MTW3 slams them both out when it comes to audio quality.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 noise
The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 have good noise cancelling, keeping the ruckus out. Photo: Geir Nordby, L&B Tech Reviews

Audio quality

Which brings us to the most important part. Because the sound of the Momentum True Wireless 3 is just as fabulous as of its predecessor. I don’t have it to compare directly, but this is the sound I remember from both the earlier editions.

You can customize the audio with a simple 3 band EQ, and you can do an audio blind test between three EQ presets, and choose which is the better of A, B and C. After taking the test I found that both the bass, mids and highs were boosted 3 dB each. Basically just turning the sound up. Which means two things: The EQ function is limited, and the audio is great as it is.

*Update April 26, 2 p.m.*

After testing the earbuds on the bus, the sound felt a bit slimmer, even with the ANC activated. I ended up boosting the bass and reducing the midrange somewhat.

Industrial pop

Halsey’s People Disappear Here, produced and mixed by Trent Reznor (Nine Inch Nails), sounds hefty when played loud through the MTW3, yet also has a nice and clear midrange. Her voice stands out of the dirty backdrop of distorted synths, and there is a very vivid presentation of the beats and instrumentals. You can play plenty loud before the transients are flattened, in fact you can pretty much crank it all the way. It will probably be too loud for some, but just perfect for me.

Sennheiser MTW3 vs BW PI7 vs Sony WF 1000XM4 Sennheiser MTW3 vs BW PI7 vs Sony WF 1000XM42
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Left to right: Sennheiser MTW3, B&W PI7 and Sony WF-1000XM4. Photo: Geir Nordby, L&B Tech Reviews

A crooner’s dream

The deep crooner voice of Sivert Høyem of Madrugada sounds both big and of great realism, in the ballad Ecstasy. The big reverb of the piano really shines through, with nice tonality and credible timbre. When the drums come in, the fundamentals of the kick drum aren’t lost. The music really comes alive.

Classical music with a big orchestra also sounds great. You can never really have the same amount of details in the treble area using wireless earbuds than with cabled ones, because of Bluetooth limitations and also the built-in amplifier. Try the Sennheiser IE 300 with a good music player, and you will have more air, an even bigger sound and better dynamics. But for wireless earbuds, this is really good.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 white2 Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 graphite2 Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 black2 Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 w case white Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 w case graphite Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 w case black
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Phto: Sennheiser

Eleanor Rigby

Cody Fry has an impressive orchestral interpretation of the Beatles’ Eleanor Rigby, I can listen to this one all day. Loudly! The chir in the chorus, the brutal timpani, together with the quiet pauses – and the nervous mood throughout. The song is quite remarkably reproduced through the MTW3.

Still, compared to the Bowers & Wilkins PI7, the Sennheisers leave you a bit wanting in the lower registry. They don’t go quite as low in the bass region, nor are they as rock solid during the loudest passages. However, the MTW3’s do go a bit louder, which is a good thing. The PI7’s also lack tone controls completely, and the MTW3’s do demonstrate a slightly more open treble area, where violins and sopranos get to shine. Plus, the soundstage is wider.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 MTW3 case
Foto: Geir Gråbein Nordby

Conclusion

The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 are a fabulous pair of earphones. The price has dropped over 10 percent since the previous model, still with the same great sound. Improved in some ways, with wireless charging and aptX Adaptive codec. But the most important thing to yours truly is the customizeable fit. The new wings make for a better fit than ever, and now you can safely use them while running.

The equalizer is still a sorry excuse for a tone control: only bass, midrange and treble can be adjusted. That really doesn’t matter much, though, as the audio quality is excellent out of the box. Multi-point connection is also missing, but you can’t win them all.

According to yours truly, the B&W PI7 are still better sounding earbuds, but they also cost over 50 percent more. If you are wondering which are the best wireless earbuds under 300 euro, the True Wireless 3 will be on the top of my list.

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