Laptop Mag Verdict
The Momentum True Wireless 3 blends excellent noise cancellation and dynamic, customizable sound into an award-winning design.
Superior sound with plenty of customization
Excellent adaptive noise cancellation
Terrific touch controls
Acceptable battery life
Disappointing call quality
No Find My Buds function or multipoint technology
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They had been rumored for weeks, but the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 are now official. The follow-up to the critically acclaimed Momentum True Wireless 2 distinguishes themselves from the pack by welcoming an all-new look and some notable tech upgrades.
These buds were awarded a 2022 Red Dot Design Award for their gorgeous redesign. The inclusion of adaptive noise cancellation effectively neutralizes ambient sounds for undisrupted listening, no matter the environment. Improved touch controls, stable battery life, and legacy sound with various customization features complete this threequel.
Colors: Black; White; Graphite
Battery life (rated): 6.5 hours (ANC on); 7 hours (ANC off); 28 hours (charging case)
Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.2
Water resistance: Yes (IPX4 rated)
Size: 2.7 x 1.7 x 1.3 inches (earbuds + charging case)
Weight: 0.2 ounces (per bud); 2.34 ounces (charging case)
- Our expert picks for the best wireless earbuds, per budget and style
- Check out our Apple AirPods Pro review
- …and our Sony WF-1000XM4 review
Certain shortcomings (call quality, select wireless features) may have you questioning whether to splurge on these premium buds. I’m telling you not to second-guess it, otherwise you’ll miss out on some of the best noise-cancelling earbuds money can buy.
Read on for the complete rundown on the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: Availability and price
The Momentum True Wireless 3 can be pre-ordered for $249 directly from Sennheiser. They come in three colors: Black, White, and Graphite. Inside the box are a wireless charging case, USB-C charging cable, four pairs of different sized ear tips, three pairs of different sized fins, and a user guide.
For perspective, these buds launched for $50 less than the previous two versions and share the same MSRP as the AirPods Pro. They also come in at a lower price point than the category-leading Sony WF-1000XM4 ($279) and cost more than popular sub-luxury opponents like the Beats Fit Pro ($199) and Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 ($109).
Be sure to bookmark our headphone deals page for the latest sales.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: Design and comfort
The first and second models in the series embody the brand’s minimalist and elegant aesthetic. Rather than perform another copy and paste job, Sennheiser decided to completely revamp the design. It is beautiful. The all-aluminum front with polished matte finish and debossed Sennheiser insignia in the middle give these buds a sleek appearance. They also have a rectangular shape with a larger touch panel and come sweat and water resistant (IPX4).
More attractive is the signature fabric charging case with IPX4 certification. Its look and feel complements the buds’ high-end craftsmanship. Strong magnets keep the lid shut tight and the buds docked handsomely in their charging slots. My only complaint is the charging port on the front; having it in the back is more discrete and practical.
Sennheiser says the new design was created for ergonomic fit and long-lasting comfort. Well, there is half truth to that statement. These buds mold into the concha and remain in place when properly adjusted. Sennheiser’s tips also form a tight seal around the canal to prevent slippage.
Comfort is OK for hour-and-a-half listening sessions, but nothing longer. I noticed the buds pressing into the concha the longer I wore them. Those with a high pain threshold should be fine wearing them for lengthier stretches, but I suggest moderating your listening time.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: Controls and digital assistant
Sennheiser makes nearly every function accessible directly on the buds and expanded the sensors for better tap accuracy. What you get are some of the most responsive touch controls ever made.
The multiple input methods – single/double/triple tap and long hold – all register with precision. Every one of these are assigned to a different function on each bud, so you don’t have to waste time customizing the control scheme, which is optional in the Smart Control app.
Motion detection returns to auto-play/pause music when removing/placing the buds on your ears, and it works flawlessly.
Bixby, Google Assistant, and Siri are compatible and perform well for the most part. When fully functional, each AI bot registered and responded to tasks quickly, thanks to Sennheiser’s powerful mic array that captures every single syllable. Google Assistant results sometimes took a few seconds to show up on screen or were never vocalized. Siri would often give me a “call disconnected” prompt after requests timed out.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: Audio quality
The Momentum True Wireless 3 boast 7mm drivers, intuitive sound features, multiple EQ settings, and hi-res audio codec support to deliver excellent sonic performance across all media formats.
Let’s start by discussing the default sound signature. It is crisp, well-balanced, and full of depth. These buds brought an immersive presence to live recordings such as John Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme, Pt. 1 – Acknowledge,” which was beautifully reproduced all the way through. Every element sounded distinctive, from the opening gong to the monotonous chants near the conclusion. But it was the orchestral play that dominated the soundstage, feeding my ears rich double bass, striking horns, and tinging hi-hats.
Making the transition to hip-hop records got my adrenaline pumping. 50 Cent’s “In My Hood” shot a surge of booming bass through my body; that bassline was bubbling, and the drums knocked hard. I was impressed by how well the Momentum True Wireless 3 handled the low end, never once distorting sound and keeping mids and highs detailed. Rock tracks played similarly. AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” exuded headbanger vibes with its crashing cymbals and punchy riffs. There was also some fantastic vocal layering to hear every band member scream the iconic hook.
Sound personalization is the Momentum True Wireless 3’s greatest strength. It all starts with Sound Check, a feature that tailors audio to your hearing via a listening test. My preset leaned towards the low-mid range of the frequency spectrum, sending more treble and bass through the speakers. It was my go-to for music streaming.
Another way to personalize sound is through the Equalizer. You can manually set the bass, mid, and treble for your custom profile or pick from six decently engineered presets: Rock, Pop, Dance, Hip Hop, Classical, and Movie. There are two extra presets – Bass Boost and Podcast – that can be activated with any other preset, including your Sound Check preset. Some of Sennheiser’s presets were practically identical in performance. Rock and Hip Hop sounded similar, and Bass Boost was better for increasing the low end. Podcast produced clearer vocals when listening to eBooks and dialogue-heavy content.
Sound Zones is another huge sound feature. Its purpose is to optimize an EQ setting (or noise cancellation) by adjusting audio to your location. This is a unique option that works well for those seeking a more stabilized listening experience when entering different environments.
AAC, SBC, and aptX Adaptive audio codecs are available. The latter dynamically scales the bitrate to adapt and adjust what you’re hearing. In other words, whatever compatible device you’re streaming content from will receive hi-res audio with minimal latency.
Something else worth mentioning is that listening with noise cancellation on doesn’t compromise quality.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: Adaptive noise cancellation
Most critics found the Momentum True Wireless 2 to be a stellar noise neutralizer. Its successor belongs in the upper echelon right next to the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds and Sony WF-1000XM4. Sennheiser’s adaptive noise cancellation automatically adjusts to your surroundings and reduces ambient noise at an incredibly high level.
The Momentum True Wireless 3 kept me focused on assignments and let me enjoy music peacefully at all times of the day. Adaptive mode was perfect for eliminating low- and mid-frequency sounds. I couldn’t hear the excessive family chatter in the kitchen, nor did the tumbling noises from the laundry room break my concentration.
Most importantly, the technology put a muzzle on high-frequency sounds. Blocking out my toddler’s cries when passing by the nursery to enter my office was a blessing. Other blaring noises like ambulance sirens and whistles were audible outside, but neither pulled me away from whatever was playing.
Sennheiser even developed an Anti-Wind Mode that works surprisingly well in gusty conditions. It minimized the whisking effects created by brisk winds and speeding cars.
Transparency Mode lets you hear what’s around you. Sennheiser offers the option to play or pause music when enabled it, something I’ve yet to see any other ambient listening mode do. Just know it lets in noises and voices clearly to gain a greater sense of awareness and engage in conversations without having to remove the buds.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: App and special features
Sennheiser Smart Control is the companion app and comes fully loaded with features. I’ve already touched on the majority: Adaptive Noise Cancellation, Equalizer, Sound Check, Sound Zones, Transparency Mode, and control customization.
Rounding out the app are a battery level indicator, connections management setting to see what devices have been previously paired, firmware updates, toggles for different functions (e.g., Smart Pause, Auto-Accept Call), and an Auto-Power to place the buds in sleep mode when inactive after several minutes.
That is a fair amount of functionality at your disposal. However, it was flabbergasting to see that Sennheiser did not include a Find My Buds function for its flagship buds.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: Battery life and charging case
Playtimes for the Momentum True Wireless 3 are as follows: 6.5 hours with ANC on and 7 hours with ANC off. I achieved four days of moderate use before recharging. You’re also getting two more hours of noise cancellation than the AirPods Pro.
The charging case holds up to 28 hours fully charged. Having four extra charges isn’t so bad. Furthermore, you’re getting more total playtime than the AirPods Pro (24 hours), which is what really matters. A 10-minute quick charge speeds up the charging process by netting you 1 hour of listening time.
Wireless charging has been added to effortlessly juice up the buds by placing the case on a Qi-enabled wireless charging pad.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: Call quality and connectivity
According to Sennheiser, each bud carries three microphones to “promote crystal-clear call quality.” I wouldn’t describe that as my calling experience. Only in completely silent settings could people hear me loud and clear. The slightest noises caused muffling, and that effect only heightened when taking voice and video calls outside. Some friends had trouble hearing me over noisy backdrops and the mics picked up lots of wind, which only worsened clarity.
Bluetooth (version 5.2) operates as smoothly as it ever has on Sennheiser buds. Range was exceptional, extending up to 80 feet (24 meters) before dropping connection. I could circle around the backyard and grab the mail up front without any stuttering. Connectivity was also on point, pairing the buds to my last recognized device when taking them out of the charging case.
One-tap Google Fast Pair and multipoint technology (pair to two devices simultaneously) would have been appreciated, but Sennheiser did confirm that GFP is coming soon in an update.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 review: Verdict
The Momentum True Wireless 3 stakes its claim as the series’ true flagship model and one of the category’s best offerings. Sennheiser’s redesign is classy and eye-catching. Audio is superior to most rivals in its price class, specifically top sellers like the AirPods Pro and Beats Fit Pro. Adaptive noise cancellation is the only other hallmark more praiseworthy than the sound, blocking out external sounds at the same level as the WF-1000XM4.
No pair of wireless earbuds is without its flaws and the Momentum True Wireless 3 have a few. Call quality underwhelms, discomfort can become common for listeners with sensitive ears, and the lack of specific wireless features (Find My Buds, multipoint technology) won't sit well with mobile users.
All in all, the Momentum True Wireless 3 is a threequel that ups the ante in nearly every way and sends a foreboding message to Apple and Sony that Sennheiser is right on their heels.