It was a duel of titans that pitted Apple’s AirPods Pro against Sony’s WF-1000XM4 in the field of wireless headphones. And against all a prioriSony even won its fight.
Everyone swears by AirPods, and that makes sense since the Apple ecosystem is extremely well established in France, as well as the devices of the Californian brand are unquestionably of quality. However, and despite the a prioriAirPods Pro aren’t the best headphones true-wireless of the market. So, who wins this honorary title from our lab tests? These are Sony’s WF-1000XM4s and it’s hardly a surprise when you consider the quality of the audio products offered by the Japanese brand in recent years.
How did these WF-1000XM4 manage to outperform the AirPods Pro? First, in terms of design, the two products are quite similar. However, the quality of the plastic used is superior on the Sony model and the matte finish and the small copper parts give the WF-1000XM4 a more premium appearance. On the other hand, you have to subscribe to the in-ear concept, which blocks the ear canal more than the Apple model. It is obviously also a matter of taste.
But the real advantage of the WF-1000XM4s is battery life. The WF-1000XM4 completely crush the AirPods Pro, offering 8 to 12 hours of use (with or without active noise reduction) on a single charge, while Apple’s model offers “only” 4 hours 30 minutes to 5 h 30 min under these same conditions.
Exceptional sound quality
Same observation for the sound quality, where Sony demonstrates its know-how: the WF-1000XM4 are simply unbeatable in this field. “Sony’s headphones have a softer sound due in particular to the nice highlighting of the bass and the slight drop in the high-midswe wrote during the duel. The dynamics are also spectacular, as is the precision of the mids and highs. Finally, the sound stage is particularly spacious and believable.” Quite dithyrambic. Active noise reduction is also to Sony’s advantage, with the WF-1000XM4 being slightly more effective than the AirPods Pro when it comes to attenuating low frequencies.
Some points are still to the advantage of Apple. The AirPods Pro are for example better in the reproduction of the voice, which makes it a better tool for meetings and calls. Latency is also lower with the AirPods Pro than with the WF-1000XM4. Note that AirPods Pro unfold their full potential when paired with an iOS terminal, so the choice of ecosystem is quite important.
Yes, but here it is, the WF-1000XM4 are indeed the winners of this duel, in particular thanks to a much greater autonomy, a more effective active noise reduction, but above all an even more accomplished sound performance. Find all the details of this duel in our article below.