I have a simple rule - the better the equipment, the softer the volume you can play the music at. With the WH-1000XM3 I can certainly play music at an incredible low volume.
With ANC on and and music playing at a very low volumes - subjectively environment noises are effectively reduced to around 90% to 95%. Only very loud voices get through now. My colleagues have to wave frantically or shout real loudly to grab my attention now.
The office noises drown out completely when I up the volume every so slightly.
Sure there are down sides:
- Update takes a long time
- All plastic body
- Expensive RRP
- Do not work well in passive mode
- Zero protection carry pouch
All the issues considered, there is one up side. The WH-1000XM3 is currently the best noise canceling technology money can buy now. Every morning when I put these headphones over my head, I can just feel those creative juices gushing out. I’m in an office full of people, but creatively, it’s as if I’m working alone on a desolated island in the middle of nowhere.
Technology moves at a rapid pace these days, I doubt the Sony can hold this mantle for long. What’s next?