The Sennheiser Momentum 4 Earbuds Are Music To My Ears, But I’m Not Sure About The Price

The Sennheiser Momentum 4 Earbuds Are Music To My Ears, But I’m Not Sure About The Price
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Sennheiser is one of those brands that, depending on how much of a fan you already are, you already know what you’re getting. Whenever people recommend earbuds and headphones, chances are there’s a pair of Sennheisers on that list.

When offered a pair of the latest Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 4 earbuds to review, I was interested to see how they stacked up. I reviewed the Sennheiser Momentum TW 3 earbuds and was immensely impressed by their performance, so I wanted to see how this newest model has improved on the previous design.

The short answer is that Sennheiser’s earbud game is still as strong as ever – but with a $500 price tag, is that enough to justify the investment?

How do the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 4 earbuds work?

Sennheiser momentum 4 earbuds review
Image: Gizmodo Australia

To get the most out of the Momentum TW 4’s features you’ll need to download Sennheiser’s companion app, which, if you’ve bought a pair of wireless headphones within the last five years or so, probably doesn’t come as a surprise. It’s got an easy-to-navigate interface, and I never felt like I couldn’t find the feature I needed to adjust.

The Momentum 4 features touch controls, with customisable inputs for each earbud. For some reason, I always prefer to have my left earbud be my noise-cancellation/hear-through modes and my right ear controls pause/play and next track, and it was pretty easy to get that set up right away.

When I first started using them, it took me a couple of days to get used to the correct rhythm of presses. I’d occasionally move a tad too slow and two presses would be registered as separate sequences instead of a chain.

According to Sennheiser, the earbuds have around 7.5 hours of playback with Adaptive Noise Cancellation activated, with the charging case supplying an extra 22.5 hours (to a total of 30). It also takes around eight minutes of charging to get an hour of playback, which is good news if you’re someone who constantly forgets to charge their earbuds before heading out.

I had the earbuds running non-stop for 3.5 hours, with ANC engaged at a reasonable volume (around 70 per cent) and lost around 60 per cent of my battery. At that rate, I’d hit 0 per cent around in another 2.5 to 3 hours, which is a bit shorter than Sennheisier’s estimated time. While the app displayed my battery level as “40 per cent”, it also only shows battery capacity in increments of 10 per cent, so this reading is somewhat vague, it could have been 49 per cent or 41 per cent.

The Momentum 4 comes with interchangeable silicon ear tips, along with fins that’ll help secure the earbuds and help keep a tighter seal. If you aren’t sure if your chosen tips and fins are right, there’s a Fit Test in the companion app that’ll help keep things secure. They’re a comfy wear too. On multiple occasions I wore them for a couple hours at a time, only having to readjust them after eating. Although, I did feel a slight irritation on a very hot day after removing them and putting them in.

On the phone call side of things, I had no problems navigating those via the touch controls and both the audio coming in and going out sounded plenty clear.

How do the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 4 earbuds sound?

Image: Sennheiser/Gizmodo Australia

The Momentum TW 4 earbuds sound great. While cycling through a broad spectrum of bands and genres, everything sounded so bright and crisp. There’s a clear definition to every channel, even before you start fiddling around with the equaliser settings. From the crunchy guitars of Queens of the Stone Age to the industrial gloom of Nine Inch Nails and party-time vibes of Daft Punk, the Momentum 4 earbuds didn’t miss a beat.

While I enjoyed how balanced the headphones sounded on a neutral setting, adjusting the equaliser definitely helped to make certain elements sound richer and more dynamic. The more guitar-heavy tracks became punchier when I adjusted the highs and mids, while I could really feel the throb of more bass-heavy music as those deeper tones were pushed to the forefront.

While you can use most of the companion app’s features without a Sennheiser account, you’ll need one to access the Sound Personalisation feature. A small but annoying hurdle.

I’d definitely recommend using the Sound Personalisation feature. It works by playing a series of different instruments, where you’ll need to adjust the volume to a preferred volume. It’ll then play multiple instruments together and you’ll need to toggle how loud or quiet you’d prefer certain instruments to sound in the mix. While the result didn’t make a major adjustment to my EQ, what it did tweak was noticeable enough for me.

There’s also a “Sound Zone” feature, which automatically triggers sound settings when you enter certain areas. For example, you can have the earbuds flip on transparency mode when you get close to your office, or change the equaliser setting to something more bass-heavy when you get to the gym. Handy if you want to go as hand’s free as possible with these earbuds.

What about its noise cancellation?

Image: Sennheiser/Gizmodo Australia

The Momentum 4 earbuds use adaptative noise-cancellation, which means it’s constantly adjusting its levels of noise-cancellation based on what its external mics are picking up. This is one of my least favourite features of the Momentum 3 earbuds, as I found it good but lacking. I was impressed by how much more consistent this feature was with the Momentum 4. Sennheiser has nailed the sound of silence.

One issue that has carried over from the previous model is how the external microphones that determine your ANC pick up the wind. If it’s slightly breezy outside, you’ll know because it’ll sound like someone is blowing into your ears.

Now, that’s an easily solved problem – the companion apps offer an anti-wind function, which works quite well. However, when you activate this, you sacrifice some noise cancellation in the process. It doesn’t turn the ANC off, but it does lower its overall level. I rode a few peak-hour trains and wandered a busy Sydney CBD with both settings enabled with no music on, and the difference was noticeable. With that said, when I chucked on some music at a pretty reasonable volume, I could barely tell which ANC mode was on.

If there’s one big issue I have with the ANC – and it’s an issue I had with the Momentum 3 as well – it’s that you can’t cycle through all three settings via the touch controls. You can either select whichever setting you used last – ANC or Anti-Wind – or you turn off the feature entirely. If you want to swap from full ANC or Anti-Wind, you need to go into the app and change it manually. Considering everything you can control just through the touch controls, it’s an annoying limitation.

The earbuds also feature a transparency mode, which creates pass-through audio so you can hear things happening around you without having to take the earbuds out. This feature is as good as ever – I could hear everything going on around me pretty crisp and clear – but this time it’s adjustable. At the mid-setting, everything sounded about the same volume as if I wasn’t wearing headphones. When pushing it to higher levels, it made everything come through a bit louder, almost like a pseudo-hearing aid. If you want to adjust the transparency levels, you’ll need to do it manually via the app as well (although I find this less annoying than the ANC feature).

Should you buy the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 4 earbuds?

Image: Gizmodo Australia

In terms of pure performance, you could do a lot worse than the Sennheiser Momentum 4 earbuds. They do everything that you want a good pair of earbuds to do, and they do it extremely well – from audio quality to noise cancellation, battery life, interface and comfort.

With all that said, there’s one thing I can’t shake about the Momentum 4 and that’s the price. These are a $499 pair of earbuds, which is so much money. On the one hand, I get it. Sennheiser is a premium audio brand, so its products come at a premium price. But having reviewed the previous iteration of the Momentum TW earbuds, I can’t help but feel as though your money could be better spent.

When I reviewed the Momentum TW 3 earbuds back in 2022, I noted that the then $399 RRP was a steep price, but a worthwhile investment. While the Momentum 4 does have some improvements over the previous model – especially with its adaptive noise-cancellation – there’s nothing about the Momentum 3 earbuds that was a deal-breaker.

Even outside of Sennheiser, there are still some good options from big-name audio brands. In our review of the Sony WF-1000XM5 earbuds, we noted that they were “brilliant at cancelling noise, and even better at delivering sound into your eardrums”. The Sony WF-1000XM5 are currently priced at $349.

If you’re the kind of person who has to have the newest toy possible and you’ve got the money to spare, then you won’t be disappointed with the Momentum 4 earbuds. Price aside, these are fantastic earbuds. However, if you want a very good pair of Sennheiser earbuds without paying $500, then get a pair of the Momentum 3 earbuds and save yourself $100.

Where to buy the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 4 Earbuds

Amazon Australia ($499) | The Good Guys ($499) | Sennheiser ($499.95)

Image: Gizmodo Australia

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At Gizmodo, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW – prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.