Get Them Here
The new sennheiser momentum 3 have been packed with a whole bunch of new features to help them stay competitive in todays super competitive ANC headphone market. Although I do enjoy these headphones, they aren’t for everyone. But today we’re going to see how the Sennheiser Momentum 3’s stack up to today’s big boys, the Sony 1000XM3’s and the Bose NC 700’s… cause there are somethings about the momentum 3’s that I prefer over these other headphones.
So first off we obviously have to talk about price. Both the Momentum 3’s and NC 700’s retail for $400. Where as the Sony 1000XM3’s retail for $350 and now sometimes even go on sale. Personally I just hope that this doesn’t start a trend where more and more premium ANC headphones are going to start going up in prices like premium phones did. But if you want to pick any of these headphones up they’ll be linked down below. And if you want to learn more about any of these headphones please watch their full reviews cause we’re only going to be going over the main differences here.
Now before we actually get to the headphones I do want to quickly address the carrying cases here. Both the Sony 1000XM3’s and Bose NC 700’s come included with a decent hardshell carrying case that is going to keep you’re headphones safe when you cram them into an over packed back pack and its very easy to take you’re headphones out and put them back in. Where as with the Momentum 3’s… their carrying case is a huge let down for $400 headphones. It feels nice but this floppy carrying case just makes putting you’re headphones away a hassle. And since its not a hardshell case you do have to be carful about not accidentally crushing your headphones. In short, I wouldn’t recommend the Momentum 3’s to a constant commuter looking for headphones… unless you plan on getting your own case.
Now with that out of the way lets talk about the design and build quality on these headphones. All three of these headphones look very different. At the end of the day looks are subjective but personally I prefer how the Sony’s look. Personally I prefer their understated design and I really like their low profile headband. But when it comes to build quality… that’s another story. The Sony’s have good build quality, and even after a year of heavy usage my 1000XM3’s look just as good as the day I got them. But my biggest complaint about the Sony’s is that the leatherette on their ear pads and headband feel very plasticy. Where as the leatherette on the Bose NC 700’s feels much nicer… But hands down the Momentum 3’s have the best feeling ear pads and headband cause they are using real sheep skin leather. It just feels richer and smoother. And over all I do think the Momentum 3’s have the best build quality here. They just feel sturdier than the Bose and more importantly since they don’t have silicon underneath the headband like the Bose, the headband on the Momentum 3’s don’t get all gunked up.
Now when it comes to fit, if I had to rank them it would go Sennheiser, Sony and then Bose and here’s why. Both the Sennheiser Momentum 3’s and Sony 1000XM3’s are big head approved. They both have very little clamping force and you forget that you have them on when you’re watching movies with them. Which is a good thing. But the Sony’s aren’t going to fit everyone comfortably cause their ear cups are a little cramped compared to the other 2 headphones here. If you have medium or low profile ears like me they’ll fit you just fine, but if you have larger ears or ears that stick out a lot then you’ll be better off with the momentum 3’s cause of their more spacious ear cups. Now yeah, the ear cups on the Bose NC 700’s are slightly more spacious than the ear cups on the Sennheiser’s, but since the NC 700’s have more clamping force they aren’t as comfortable for people who have a larger head like me. I can wear these headphones for awhile, but I never forget they’re there and I constantly have to readjust them.
Now when it comes to tech specs, all three of these headphones charge via a USB C port which is good. But when it comes to battery life these headphones are very different. From least to most, the Momentum 3’s have an advertised battery life of 17 hours which is below average, and I'm getting more like 14 hours. The Bose NC 700’s have a 20 hour battery life which is okay… but not great. Where as the Sony 1000XM3’s have an advertised battery life of 30 hours
Now real world use with the Sony’s I can usually go 2 weeks in between charges. And under the same use conditions I can go a week and 2 days between charges with the Bose. But with the sennheiser’s I find myself charging them every 5 days or so. So yeah, once you get used to only charging your headphones every 2 weeks you don’t have to go back.
Regarding bluetooth connectivity both the Sennheiser and Bose can be connected to 2 devices at the same time so you can easily hot swap from one device to another. Now this is a big deal cause with the Sony’s you can only be connected to one device at a time. So you just can’t swap from your phone to your computer as easily.
But when it comes to audio codecs all three of these headphones have ACC support which is good if you’re an iPhone user. But if you’re an android user the Sennheiser have support for Aptx and Aptx low latency where as the Sony’s have LDAC which is Sony’s in-house audio codec. Ultimately unless you have your own Flac files stored on your phone or if you’re subscribed to a lossless steaming service… Aptx or LDAC isnt super important to you. If you’re just streaming your music off of apple music or youtube all three of these headphones are just fine.
But for the people who do have their own Flac files or are subscribed to a lossless streaming service like tidal then you’ll probably want to know that the Sennheiser momentum 3’s are the only headphones here who’s USB C port can also be used as a wired connection. So if you’re an android audiophile this could be a huge deal for you. And over all when it comes to listening to music, personally I prefer how the Momentum 3’s sound. Now all three of these headphones sound good but they’re going to please very different types of people. If you’re someone that likes to have full control over your EQ settings or if you like a lot of bass in your music then you should go with the Sony’s. With the Sony you can make them sound how ever you want and have different eq settings for different listening situations and if you want to max out the bass on these headphones you can do that. But if you’re someone that prefers a neutral sound signature and a wider sound stage than you’ll want to look into the Sennheiser’s or Bose. Both of these headphones have neutral sound signatures but personally I prefer the Sennheiser’s cause they have more bass than the Bose. But the bass on the Sennheiser is very different than the bass on the Sony’s. The bass on the Sennheiser’s resonate so deep that they send chills down your back where as the bass on the Sony’s just has more of a kick to it which isnt as impressive. Ultimately this boils down to personal preference, but I think the Sony’s will please most people where as the Sennheiser’s will please people who prefer detail.
But another thing that’s going to boil down to personal preference is whether you prefer touch pads or physical control buttons on your headphones. Now yeah there is a learning curve when it comes to using the touch pads on the Bose or Sony’s but once you get used to them they’re very easy to use. But if you’re someone that prefers the simplicity and accuracy of physical buttons then the Sennheiser’s have your back. Their buttons are very tactile but I just wish they were metal instead of rubber.
But now lets talk about how the Active Noise cancelation on the Momentum 3’s stack up against the Bose and Sony’s. The ANC on the Momentum 3’s have no problem keeping up with the big boys when it comes to blocking out constant low frequency sounds like road noise. But when it comes to blocking out random higher frequency sounds like chatter the Momentum 3’s clearly struggle. And so that you can see for yourself we’re going to jump into an ANC test.
Like you may have just seen the momentum 3’s block out a considerable amount of road noise but chatter not so much. Like I’ve said in the past any decent pair of ANC headphones should have no problem blocking out constant low frequency sounds, but what separates decent ANC headphones from great ANC headphones is how well they manage to block out random higher frequency sounds. So if you’re looking for the best Active Noise Cancelation, the Sony 1000XM3’s still reign supreme.
But a feature that’s new to the momentum 3’s is that they now have an ambient mode. And the ambient mode on the Momentum 3’s get the job done. It sound natural, and there’s no hissing in the background. But the Ambient mode in the Momentum 3’s is very basic, you can only have it on or off, you can’t adjust it like on the Bose and Sony’s. And technically speaking the ambient mode on the Sony’s is the most sophisticated here cause it actively blocks out sudden loud noises saving you from jump scares and you can also set it to only focus on people’s voices. Both the momentum 3’s and NC 700’s meet the criteria for decent ambient modes… but the Sony’s is still better.
But when it comes to phone calls, ironically the microphone on the Sony’s sound very muffled. They get the job done but you are going to have to speak up when taking phone calls.
The microphone on the Momentum 3’s isnt all that much better cause there’s a lot of amplification going on. So you actually don’t want to speaker too loudly when taking phone calls with these.
But the Bose NC 700’s on the other hand have a great sounding microphone for phone calls. Its just sounds miles better than than what’s found on the Sony 1000XM3’s and Sennheiser Momentum 3’s.
So over all the Sennheiser Momentum 3’s have been packed with a whole bunch of features to help them stay competitive against the Sony 1000XM3’s and Bose NC 700’s. They even have some other features that I didn’t even mention in this video. But at the end of the day I still prefer and recommend the Sony 1000XM3’s for the majority of people. They cost less, they have better performing ANC and Ambient modes, and they have a much longer battery life. But the Momentum 3’s are still a good alternative to the Sony 1000XM3’s if you need larger ear cups or if you want better sound. I think the Momentum 3’s are a good option for an android Audiophile if you plan on using that USB C wired connection, but if you’re a heavy commuter who’s really looking into active noise cancellation these wouldn’t be my first pick.