Are These Ear Buds the Best in 2020?

Having a lifelong career in radio broadcasting means you spend a lot of time wearing headphones. You get a good sense of what not only sounds good but also what feels comfortable when you are exposed to hours of use at a time. I’ve also noticed over the years that everyone has different tastes and preferences when it comes to what is good for their ears, usually, it comes down to a specific style and brand that you stick with for a long time.

For me that is Sennheiser.

Watch the video review here, read on for extra content

My first pair was actually my dads, he’s a muso and I’d always pinch his “cans” which were the yellow HD 414s. From there over the years I’ve had many others and a couple of other brands but always think back fondly to those headphones. Now my “dailys” are a pair of HD 4.40 wireless, which has a friendly price and decent sound. You’ll see me wearing them in most of the videos I do with Mikey on the Random 30. 

Now I’ve been given the chance to review the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 in-ear headphones and it’s tough when you compare them to the other options available. The market is saturated with earbuds, like the Apple Air Pods or the Samsung Galaxy Buds (which have sound by the pros at AKG), so can my usual brand of choice deliver?

Lovely design

The first thing you’ll notice out of the box is the packaging. This is the classic blue trim box design with a picture on the front detailing what you are buying exactly. There’s no pure black or white design with a cryptic logo. This package instead tells you exactly what is in the box and exactly what that device does. What do you expect, it’s German designed, it’s efficient and there’s enough flair from the embossed “Momentum” to give it a little style, for the brief moment it’s going to stay in there. Let’s face it, you’ll open it, look at it once and throw the packaging away. We are here for sound and style, not for boxes.

Inside you’ll find the earbuds themselves which have a really nice black and silver finish. The brushed metal look is classic “hi-end audio device” and the Sennheiser logo in the middle gives you the brand recognition you want. Straight away my thought was that they are bigger than some of the other brands and popping them right next to a set of galaxy buds shows as much, but they are smaller than the previous model of Momentums and I’ll be honest once they are in your ear you won’t notice them. I was just really happy they didn’t go with that ridiculous ear drip design you see on Apple’s Air pods. 

Size isn’t everything left is Galaxy buds, right is Momentum

The charging case is a beautiful design as well, the material grey with black trim feels like a “ring box” and less like the cheap plastic you get with other brands, as you open the case you kind of expect to see a golden glow like in the movie “Pulp Fiction” but you are greeted with a white logo and perfectly fitted charging stations for the buds themselves. One thing really stands out with the features of the case and that’s the lack of wireless charging. There is a USB c port, but to not include wireless and still have the box as large as it is, really seems like a missed opportunity.

It’s time to get to business, these are an audio device and all we really care about its the sound and feel of the earbuds.

They feature a 7mm dynamic driver to create a superior sound experience, with a built-in equaliser so you can adjust to your own preferences. When listening to music I could really notice the Sennheiser sound, it’s more detailed than the air pods and more natural than the galaxy buds. That is what this brand is famous for, natural, quality sound, it’s a premium quality that feels open even while crammed in your ear. The bass has also been improved and is now really well defined. It’s always best to use the app that comes with these to make slight adjustments to suit your ears, but I was really happy with the default sound and only made minor tweaks depending on what I was listening to.

Testing with music is one thing when you are listening to podcasts or audiobooks its a different sound altogether. You really want a nice clear rich voice and I found these to be a much better option, even though they do stick out a bit which makes it difficult to listen in bed with your head on a pillow unless you are flat on your back. I guess these might be good for improving posture as well.

The ANC (automatic noise cancelling) and Transparent hearing will block out the surrounding noise in the room letting you really immerse yourself in your music, podcast, audiobook or radio listening. I’ve used a few different brands now and most tend to have a really annoying white noise effect that just makes me sleepy. I’d best describe it’s like the noise machine I have in the baby’s room to help them sleep at night. The Momentum True Wireless 2 didn’t really have that at all, and best of all, I tested them in a room while the TV was on, It felt like it pushed that noise away rather than delete it altogether like it was a TV on in the bedroom at the other end of the house that you barely notice. This is an especially great feature when using your earbuds to make calls with your phone, you can really concentrate on the conversation, and you can hear enough of yourself that you won’t end up shouting in the middle of the street. 

These are designed for a full day’s use as well, Sennheiser claims that you get 7 hours out of the buds with an additional 21 hours of playtime with charging via the case. My testing got very close to that, and I’d imagine would have reached the 7-hour goal if I’d had ANC turned off. 

IPX4 graded water resistance, Basically, it’s splash resistant. So you can wear them in the rain or while sunbaking near a pool while the kids are doing bomb dives, but don’t forget to take them out if you want to go for a dip yourself. I’m not sure who would wear earbuds underwater anyway, but if you are considering it, don’t.

At this point, I’m going to throw it out there, it’s a massive call. These are the best sounding earbuds that I have tested. Better than Apple, better than Samsung, better than Sony and while it has  a slightly bulkier design they are still really comfortable to wear for long periods. The only real fault I found was in the case design with the lack of wireless charging, but that is being super nit-picky considering once you’ve charged it you get an extra 21 hours anyway, it’s just a nice feature I would’ve liked to have seen for the price tag. At the end of the day it’s all about quality of sound and comfort and you’ll get that in spades with the Sennheizer Momentum True Wireless 2.

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