Yamaha takes on Sony with noise-cancelling TW-E7A wireless earbuds

(Image credit: Yamaha)

Yamaha has finally entered the true wireless earbuds market – better late than never, we say – with two models that fundamentally promise a personalised performance adapted to the wearer and their environment. 

The Yamaha TW-E5A (£179 / $160 / AU$229) and active noise-cancelling TW-E7A (£229 / $230 / AU$329) position themselves as natural-born rivals to the dominant AirPods and class-leading Sony WF-1000XM3 respectively.

Also new are the YH-E700A wireless noise-cancelling over-ear headphones, which, at £349 ($350 / AU$499), look to take on the Sony WH-1000XM4, Bose 700 Noise Cancelling Headphones and Sennheiser Momentum 3 Wireless.

Indeed, Yamaha is out to lift the crowns off the heads of some very established rivals with its comprehensive wireless headphones line-up – and good luck to it.

(Image credit: Yamaha)

Both pairs of true wireless earbuds utilise Yamaha's new Listening Care technology, which aims to deliver consistent sound quality across the frequencies across all volumes. It uses an internal microphone to monitor background levels and correct the EQ at different pre-determined listening volumes to balance out the frequencies. 

The YH-E700A over-ears benefit from an advanced version of this process – Advanced Listening Care – which is more dynamic in its application. It takes into account dynamic range and recording level of the music signal, too, and also allows background noise to swing 2db. 

The over-ears also feature Yamaha's new proprietary active noise-cancellation, which uses an algorithm to separate the signal processing of background noise and music in an effort to retain music signal integrity as much as possible. 

The YH-E700A's Listening Optimiser works to adapt sound specifically to the wearer, too. Based on the room correction technology found in Yamaha's AV amplifiers, it calculates how sound reaches your ears every 20 second – measuring the size of your ear canals and how secure the seal is – and applies a correcting algorithm every five seconds accordingly.

(Image credit: Yamaha)

All three new models sport excellent battery lives. The TW-E5A offers 26 hours in total (6.5 hours from the buds), while the TW-E7A takes that to 28 hours (7 hours from the buds). The YH-E700As, meanwhile, offer 35 hours from a single charge.

Both true wireless models round off their spec sheets with aptX Bluetooth, whilst the over-ears utilise aptX Adaptive aptX Adaptive Bluetooth (Qualcomm's latest and highest quality codec). Then there's Qualcomm's True Wireless Stereo Plus (which promises stable bud-to-bud connectivity) and IPX5 water resistance (which means they should survive a heavy rain shower).

The TW-E5A and TW-E7A will be available from the middle of this month, while the YH-E700A are expected in December. Needless to say, we hope to go twelve rounds with them very soon after.


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Becky Roberts

Becky is the managing editor of What Hi-Fi? and, since her recent move to Melbourne, also the editor of Australian Hi-Fi magazine. During her 10 years in the hi-fi industry, she has been fortunate enough to travel the world to report on the biggest and most exciting brands in hi-fi and consumer tech (and has had the jetlag and hangovers to remember them by). In her spare time, Becky can often be found running, watching Liverpool FC and horror movies, and hunting for gluten-free cake.