IFA 2018: Sony launches WH-1000XM3 Bluetooth noise-cancelling headphones

Another year, another pair of noise-cancelling headphones from Sony, but 2018’s entry in the WH-1000X line marks a real technological advancement - and one entirely intended to improve sound quality.
That’s because the WH-1000XM3 headphones (‘M3’ is an abbreviation of ‘mark 3’) feature analogue amplification for the first time.

Sony says that the big challenge with analogue amplification is making it small and light enough for use in headphones, hence an 18-month gestation period for the WH-1000XM3s. Yes, they were in development six months before the WH-1000XM2s were even released.

Sony (and broadly accepted hi-fi wisdom) says that analogue amplification is generally the way to go for the best, most natural sound, so the combination of this with apparently improved noise-cancelling and comfort sounds like a real recipe for success.

So, are the Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones as good as they’re billed to be? There’s no need to wait to find out, because we’ve been testing a pair for the last few weeks - you can read our review online now.

The WH-1000XM3 headphones are available to order now and will set you back £330, just as their predecessors did at launch. You'll have to check out our review to find out if they're worth the premium price tag.

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Andy Madden

Andy is Deputy Editor of What Hi-Fi? and a consumer electronics journalist with nearly 20 years of experience writing news, reviews and features. Over the years he's also contributed to a number of other outlets, including The Sunday Times, the BBC, Stuff, and BA High Life Magazine. Premium wireless earbuds are his passion but he's also keen on car tech and in-car audio systems and can often be found cruising the countryside testing the latest set-ups. In his spare time Andy is a keen golfer and gamer.