The pressure is always on brands to constantly improve their offerings and introduce new ones, but for those with a proven and steady track record, this expectation to deliver is doubled. Sennheiser, the proud owner to a host of high-performing audio products, is no stranger to the challenge, and again demonstrates its prowess with the highly-anticipated Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 (MTW3) earbuds.
Standing at S$399, the MTW3 has undergone an extensive upgrade from the previous Momentum True Wireless 2. It debuted on selected markets in May before finally making its way to Singapore, and it’s astonishing how Sennheiser managed to tailor all of these enhancements into a smaller pair of earbuds, while still retaining the same battery life.
With not much difference from the previous model, the MTW3 keeps its aesthetics with the lovely premium fabric around the case, and now comes in three different colours: White, Black, and Graphite. The case’s USB-C charging port has been re-positioned to the front and upgraded to support wireless charging, with a lighting indicator informing users of its charging status: pulsing orange for in-progress charging and static green for a full charge. Despite its scaled-down size, the case may not be the most suitable when fitting into smaller pockets as they are still slightly bulky.
The MTW3 earbuds are substantially smaller, with more rounded edges to give them the illusion of being smaller than they are. Stripped off the shiny surface of its predecessor, the earpiece cuts a more modern-looking and subtle appearance. The ergonomic design of the earbuds sits very comfortably in your ears and you can customise the fit with the four different-sized silicone ear tips included in the package. A foam piece now sits inside the silicone ear tips, which helps block ambient noise more efficiently, but also traps dirt, so regular cleaning and maintenance are required.
An optional accessory has been included as well. The MTW3 can be paired with rubber ear fins that wedge on the ear concha to offer extra hold and stability, especially during vigorous exercise. These come in a sophisticated design and will be available in three different sizes. Lighting indicators sit on the inside of the earbuds with red showing that both earbuds have been disconnected, blinking red and blue in pairing mode, static blue highlighting that your earbuds have been connected, and blinking red at low battery.
When put to the test, the earbuds didn’t disappoint with their sound design and performance. The MTW3 re-established Sennheiser’s standing as one of the best in the industry, impressing with the depth of instrument separation, clarity and detail in songs that have more complexity and instruments such as progressive metal veterans Dream Theater’s “Pull Me Under” and four-time Grammy award winner Silk Sonic’s “Smokin Out The Window”.
Armed with responsive drivers, the earbuds boast a very good natural balance without adjusting the customisable EQ, resulting in lively-sounding audio and a heavy emphasis on background detail and sound staging, which makes instruments shine brightly. The bass isn’t as strong but still delivers, though there’s some upper bass bloat that bleeds into the mids. There’s also a slight de-emphasis on the treble frequencies, causing a lack of vibrancy in the mids, especially on vocals. Essentially, these earbuds might not be the best purchase for those who enjoy massive bass distortion – even if the AptX Adaptive codec offers the bonus feature of high-definition streaming and lower latency.
In fact, the latency on the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 Earbuds was barely noticeable when watching Youtube, Netflix or Instagram videos. We also tested these earbuds on games such as Marvel Super War and Critical Ops: Online PvP FPS, proving that they are more than capable of running and playing games with very minimal lag time.
Modified from Active to Adaptive Noise Cancelling (ANC), the ANC mode on the MTW3 is considerably better than the MTW2. The earbuds are adaptive and will listen to your surroundings to filter out unwanted noise accordingly, with more power used to cancel out noisier environments. Instead of two mics, the earbuds now use four (out of six) mics to actively monitor ambient noise levels. To trigger ANC, users will have to tap the left earbud three times: a double ascending beep signifies ANC mode is on, while a double descending beep shows that it’s been turned off. It can filter out unwanted background noise and focus solely on the user’s voice in less than five seconds, and is pleasant on the ears, with none of the pressure felt from the sound waves produced to eliminate unwanted ambient noise.
The transparency mode can be activated with a touch on the left earbud, a feature that can come in handy when you have to hear the surroundings. While the attempt is commendable, a hissing sound will appear upon activation, making it feel and sound like passthrough audio. An anti-wind mode, which helps to reduce wind noise as per the name, has been added to the list as well.
The MTW3 has also been remodelled to include mono mode, allowing users to play any one earbud at a time – a feature that the MTW2 lacked. Touchpads are now more responsive compared to the previous MTW2, with the auto-pause and auto-play functionality bringing more convenience when removing from or putting the earbuds in the ear. Users have the option to switch this mode off in their Smart Control application, which lets them customise touch controls and other settings. The MTW3 are rated IPX4, making it water-resistant and great for exercising.
On the note of Smart Control, the application has undergone a huge redesign and now includes more features. The newly-added Sound Zones, for instance, allow the GPS to detect a user’s location and customise their earbud’s sound settings for the gym, home, or office. These presets are then saved and automatically changed according to their location at a 100-metre radius. The equaliser is now more intuitive with the bass booster and podcast mode, with the sound check feature helping to configure the best EQ for users by testing their hearing and frequencies. The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 Earbuds cannot connect to multiple devices simultaneously, but the app may be used to switch between different platforms.
Without ANC mode turned on, the MTW3 earbuds allow for seven hours of playtime peruse and an extra 21 hours with the charging case, making it a total of 28 hours. Turn it off, and the MTW3 earbuds can last up to 5.5 hours on a single charge and offer an hour of runtime with a simple 10-minute charge.
Overall, this pair of buds is commendable and extremely comfortable to use on a daily basis. Along with so many added upgrades and functions, the ability for users to customise these earbuds certainly counts towards a more enhanced listening experience, which is always a welcome bonus. Look no further if you are looking for a pair of earbuds that boasts a great audio mix, for the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 Earbuds delivers it all.
GEEK REVIEW SCORE
Sennheiser’s Momentum True Wireless 3 leaves a great impression with its tremendous application upgrade, impeccable audio quality, and increased reliability for exercise – aided by a snug fit, an added ear fin accessory, and the transparency mode.
Aesthetics - 8/10
Build Quality - 8/10
Performance - 9/10
Value - 8/10
Geek Satisfaction - 8.5/10