The Sony WF-1000XM4 are the rumored sequel to the best wireless headphones you can buy right now, the Sony WF-1000XM3 – and as more leaks emerge the hype is building up around these headphones. potentially first-rate in-ear.
Still, details of the Sony WF-1000XM4 are slim on the pitch. There has been no confirmation from Sony that they even exist, and there is no sign of them in any regulatory body like the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
However, images of the Sony WF-1000XM4 have apparently been leaked, after photos of the packaging were posted on Reddit – and while their legitimacy is still in question, we can’t help but get excited for the next few. true wireless headphones from Sony.
The pictures – if they’re genuine – also gave us a taste of what a new design looks like and some of the features we can expect from the Sony WF-1000XM4, including active noise cancellation and support for high resolution audio.
Of course, we’ll need more than unverified images to confirm the existence of the Sony WF-1000XM4, but for now, here’s everything we know about the rumored headphones, plus everything we’d like to see. .
Cut to the chase
- What are they? A new pair of Sony wireless headphones.
- When will they be released? Maybe in 2021, but that’s to be confirmed.
- How much will they cost? Probably around $ 230 / £ 220 / AU $ 399.
Sony WF-1000XM4 release date
At the moment, there is no firm release date for the Sony WF-1000X4, but we believe their launch is quite imminent, given that it’s been a year and a half since the release of their predecessors.
The Sony WF-1000XM3 launched in July 2019, so it’s possible Sony will release its successors two years later.
It also makes sense that Sony would go for a 2021 release date if the company is to avoid competition from Apple. The tech giant is said to have launched the Apple AirPods 3 and AirPods Pro 2 at some point this year, and the latter in particular could be a rival for the Sony WF-1000XM4 as they will likely feature active noise cancellation.
The fact that images of the Sony WF-1000XM4’s packaging have been leaked also suggests that a release date may be coming soon – although, as we mentioned, these images have yet to be verified as genuine. .
Sony WF-1000XM4 price
Again, it’s not yet clear how much the Sony WF-1000XM4 will cost, but we’d be surprised if the company deviates too much from its predecessors’ price.
When it first launched, the Sony WF-1000XM3 was priced at $ 230 / £ 220 / AU $ 399, although prices have since dropped significantly as heads have aged.
We would expect Sony to target a similar price for the WF-1000XM4, as it’s a model we’ve seen from the brand before with the Sony WH-1000XM3 and the newer WH-1000XM4 on-ear headphones.
Design Sony WF-1000XM4
Almost everything we know about the design of the Sony WF-1000XM4 comes from the packaging photographs posted on Reddit by Key_Attention4766 (via the Walkman blog).
Based on the pictures, it looks like the Sony WF-1000XM4 will have a sleeker build than its predecessors, with rounder bodies and what looks like memory foam tips.
All round cases can be touch sensitive, unlike the Sony WF-1000XM3, which has a specific touch area that allows you to control your music playback, call your device’s voice assistant, ‘accept or reject calls and enter fast. Attention mode.
The golden Sony logo has also changed slightly, now appearing on the side of the headphones rather than the top. Meanwhile, a gold-accented piece on the outside of the headphones could be an external noise-canceling microphone, as the Walkman Blog assumes.
Sony WF-1000XM4 Assumed Specifications
Again, information on what kind of features we can expect from the Sony WF-1000XM4 are a bit thin on the ground, but a few specs have been gleaned from the packaging images posted on Reddit.
This includes a return of the active noise cancellation technology that made the WF-1000XM3 so popular, and it’s likely that Ambient Sound and Quick Attention modes will also make an appearance.
The package also includes Hi-Res Audio Wireless certification, meaning they could support Sony’s high-resolution LDAC codec, alongside the AAC and SBC codecs already supported by the XM3.
There had previously been rumors that the Sony WF-1000XM3 would receive a Hi-Res Audio upgrade, after the headphones appeared very briefly on the Qualcomm aptX website, being described as “ aptX HD enabled ”. This post was quickly deleted, but not before it was spotted by the Walkman blog.
As the article appeared in March 2020 and we haven’t heard anything since, there’s a chance Sony will register aptX HD support for the WF-1000XM4.
Sony WF-1000XM4: what we want to see
While information on the Sony WF-1000XM4 leaks in drops (indeed, Sony has not even confirmed their existence yet), we have had the opportunity to imagine a few things that we would like to see from the fourth-gen true wireless headphones.
Support for 360 Reality Audio
We’d like Sony to provide the WF-1000XM4 with some of the features of the Sony WH-1000XM4, their on-ear siblings (and the best headphones of 2021).
One of those features is support for 360 Reality Audio, which is Sony’s proprietary immersive sound technology. Designed to put you at the center of your music, the technology places individual instruments in a virtual sphere, making you feel like your favorite songs are coming to you from all angles.
As well as giving you another way to experience your music, the support for 360 Reality Audio could make the WF-1000XM3 a real rival for the AirPods Pro, which support Apple’s Spatial Audio technology.
DSEE Extreme audio upconversion
Another feature that Sony could potentially borrow from the WH-1000XM4 is DSEE Extreme audio upscaling. This AI-based processing seeks to restore detail from lossy compressed formats and brings clarity to lower quality formats and files, and we were impressed with its capabilities when we tested the WH-1000XM4.
Speak-To-Chat and Auto Pause
Again, Speak-To-Chat was introduced with the Sony WH-1000XM4, and we would like to see it implemented once again with the WF-1000XM4. This feature allows the microphones inside the headset to recognize when you have started speaking and pause your music while increasing the ambient noise that is channeled into your ears.
Speaking of pausing your music, we’d love to see Sony introduce auto-pause when you remove an earphone. It’s something we’ve seen on a lot of wireless headphones on the market, and it feels like a simple upgrade.
Better battery life and wireless charging
With each new generation of true wireless headphones, we love to see an improvement in battery life. The Sony WF-1000XM3 currently delivers six hours from the headphones themselves, and an additional 18 hours from the charging case, and models like the Lypertek PurePlay Z3 have proven that much more is possible these days.
That said, while the leaked images of the headphone packaging are legitimate, it looks like the battery life won’t change at all.
Another simple upgrade Sony could make is the introduction of wireless charging capabilities. This is something that Apple AirPods Pro do as standard, and with more and more people buying wireless charging pads, it seems prudent to give these users the option of wireless charging.