Sony WH-1000XM5: Features, Reviews, and Price

When we reviewed the Sony WH-1000XM4 it was clear to us that they were one of the most capable wireless headphones on the market. Circumaural closed-ear headphones, with noise cancellation as the main feature. The company renews generation with the WH-1000XM5, the new edition of its 1000X series. It has given a twist to noise cancellation, improved the driver, and bet on a more ambitious sound processing system. These are the key features of the Sony WH-1000XM5.

Sony WH-1000XM5 technical sheet

Sony WH-1000XM5
Couplingclosed circumaural
Diaphram30mm CF-MRC (carbon fiber reinforced)
ConnectivityBluetooth 5.0, NFC, multi-connection (up to 2 devices)
Noise CancellationEmbedded processor V1
Embedded processor QN1
Frequency Response4Hz to 40kHz
20Hz to 40kHz (BT)
IndictedHi-Res Audio, DSEE Extreme, Edge AI
Sound ProfileSBC, AAC, and LDAC
BatteryUp to 30 theoretical hours
Charge via USB Type-C

A much more ambitious bet

The Sony WH-1000XM5 is a more ambitious bet, point by point. Starting with the star point of these headphones, noise cancellation. Last year’s model had 4 microphones and a QN1 processor to manage this function. The new model has twice as many microphones 8 and has an additional integrated processor to the QN1, a so-called V1 that works together. The structure has been improved to minimize the incidence of wind noise, as well. In total, there is talk of a 50% improvement in noise cancellation, the biggest leap in the history of the 1000X series, well above the 15% jump between the Sony WH-1000XM3 and the Sony WH-1000XM4.

Sony WH-1000XM5

This noise cancellation system is combined with an adaptive sound control (ASC) system. This automatically detects the environment we are in, and can even recognize our location in real-time, to automatically change the degree of noise cancellation. The same happens if the headphones detect that we are in a conversation, so we can hear what is being said to us.

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The driver is now smaller. It goes from 40mm to 30mm, but Sony assures that it is a higher quality driver. The purpose of reducing the size of the driver is to reduce volume and weight compared to the last generation. Similarly, to improve sound quality, the components of these headphones have been optimized. The internal soldering has a certain percentage of gold, as in their Walkman. The conductivity of gold is superior to that of materials commonly used in the soldering of electronic devices. The proximity sensor has also been refined and is now much more hidden, consumes less power, and allows the headphones to know when you are wearing them and when you are not.

The headphones are still compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant and can be summoned by voice to start working. The connection system is multipoint, so we can have two devices connected at the same time, without having to disconnect one and reconnect the other. If we use Android, they are compatible with Fast Pair, the fastest method for pairing headphones within this ecosystem.

They repeat with touch controls to manage playback and calls, being able to customize this from the headphones application itself. The touch gestures are the same as last generation, as are the buttons used. What changes, apart from the new look in the design, is the ear cushion. Sony claims that it now conforms better to the contours of the face. The headband is thinner, and there is no adjustment of positions: it adapts to any head and relieves the pressure exerted on the ear.

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Pricing and availability of the Sony WH-1000XM5

The Sony WH-1000XM5 will be available for purchase between “late May and early June”, in black and gray colors. They will be priced at $399, thus increasing the figure compared to the previous model.

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