Excellent call quality and aware-mode, Strong noise isolation, Great fit and seal, Full sound works well in noisy environments
Mid-bass bloat, Midrange will be overly warm for some, Case passively discharges leaving earphones flat when needed
The Momentum TWS earns its place in the upper echelons for its firmly good sound, outstanding versatility and the excellent implementation of fundamental features.
Certainly, a company as lauded as Sennheiser, for its venerable Orpheus, the royal HD800S and immensely successful in-ears, garnered high expectations for their first TWS earphone, the Momentum TWS. And few would be surprised that the Momentum was lauded upon release, one of the only audiophile focused TWS models on the market and, at the time, the undisputed option for enthusiasts. However, in recent months, consumers now possess a wealth of options as the TWS technology becomes available to smaller, more boutique manufacturers who offer significantly cheaper products. Still, Sennheiser’s prestige is well earnt and the Momentum TWS remains a staple recommendation for users and critics alike. At a now discounted $250 USD asking price and commonly further discounted elsewhere, the Momentum TWS is at its most appealing despite the competition. You can read more about the Momentum TWS here and treat yourself to one below:
I would like to thank Sennheiser very much for their quick communication and for providing me with the Momentum TRue Wireless for the purpose of review. All words are my own and there is no monetary incentive for a positive review. Despite receiving the earphones free of cost, I will attempt to be as objective as possible in my evaluation.
It only takes a glance to see that the focus of the Momentum TWS is convenience. The housings are constructed from lightweight plastic with a textured finish. They do feel a little cheap compared to premium competitors as a result. However, once in the ear, their lightweight construction rewards with excellent fit stability that persists during active use. Furthermore, the touch-sensitive faceplates are a machined aluminium which aids tactility and perceived quality. This impression is aided by their ergonomic design with a tapered rear that locks into the anti-helix. So though they are amongst the larger TWS earphones, they do tuck nicely into the outer ear and didn’t form hotspots for my average-sized ears.
Once fit, the earphones isolate well, not quite as much as fully-sealed BA IEMs but splendidly for a dynamic and are among the most attenuating TWS earphones I’ve tested. They offer ample isolation for commute even without the addition of ANC, especially in conjunction with their bassy tuning. The tips are interesting, a proprietary kind like the ie800 with plastic collar that locks onto a very short nozzle. Spinfit do make appropriate tips that fit the Momentum as do Comply and both options are quality alternatives for those that struggle with the stock configuration. I found the standard tips to offer appropriate depth and a great seal every time.
The Momentum TWS offer IPX4 water resistance meaning they can’t be submerged but will withstand drops and splashes from rainy days in addition to sweat during workouts. They are automatically powered on when removed from the fabric clad carrying case and power off when reinserted. The case is of pleasing construction, the hinge has some wobble but has satisfying action with magnetic lock and spring-loaded open. It charges via USB-C but unfortunately, does not support wireless charging. The light fabric is somewhat prone to picking up stains but most are easy to remove with a damp cloth and I haven’t experienced notable fray either. It is of modest size and is easily pocketed.
A benefit of going with the Sennheisers includes its app integration that enables tweaking of its settings and sound matched only by similar Western competitors. This does complicate the pairing process, and I found that pairing with both my Pixel 3 and Pixel 4 would fail unless done through the Sennheiser app. However, once paired, the earphones quickly auto-connect and maintained stable connection both to the source and between each earpiece, even in busy areas such as public transport and shopping centres. I didn’t notice any interference or fading in or out, the connection was rock solid during my months of testing. Of note, the earphones will not pair individually, the right bud is the master and the left, the slave. Music will pause if the right earpiece is removed from the ear.
The app itself offers a reasonable array of settings, the option between no audio cues, voice and tone, whether activating aware mode pauses music and also a visual eQ. The eQ is curious and takes time to get used to, however, it does produce reasonably natural results if lacking any fine control. Finally, the firmware can be updated through the app and the earphones can be powered off as well, important to note as the carrying case will not power off the earphones if it itself is out of power.
This is unfortunate as the case did have a tendency to draw power when not in use, and I would often find that the Momentums were dead if not used for a few days. Not only would the case be out of juice, the earphones themselves would also have reactivated and depleted their power too, a small but highly aggravating issue that left me frequently frustrated. For non-reviewers who are more likely to use the Momentum on a daily basis and keep better track of its charge, this may not be so large an issue, however.
And beyond this, the earphones do offer an ample 4 hours of listening time with the case offering 2 additional charges. This isn’t a huge amount of runtime compared to modern competitors, however, I was able to easily match that figure at medium volume listening. Of note, the left/slave earpiece has a slightly smaller battery that depletes faster, though the right earbud can function independently. They support BT 5.0 in addition to Apt-X low latency for higher quality wireless audio and lower delay from supported sources. I was especially enamored by the refinement of the experience, a holistic quality that justifies its premium price tag. For instance, the touch controls are, by far, the most responsive and reliable amongst TWS earphones, they didn’t miss a beat and even provided accurate commands during jogs and workouts.
Furthermore, the mic quality is excellent, with great call quality and effective mitigation of background noise in public spaces, callers did not report difficulty discerning my voice nor did I sound distant. This experience follows through when activating the aware mode that sounds impressively transparent, lacking the hard edge of cheaper earphones. It is aggravating that this mode doesn’t work during calls, however, this is due to the limited number of microphones on the earphones and is not a commonly available feature elsewhere. Of note, the Airpods Pros do provide substantially more realistic audio through their integrated mics, though the Momentum TWS takes an easy second from the models I’ve personally tested.
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