Sennheiser Momentum 4 Review: Sublime audio, astonishing battery life
Back in 2019, Sennheiser released the Momentum 3 headphones and it was simply great; great enough to make me invest in a pair. While the world dealt with a deadly virus for two years, Sennheiser spent all that time creating its successor, which has now launched in India. It is called the Sennheiser Momentum 4 (no surprises here) and it only adds to the areas where the Momentum 3 was average – the ANC performance and tremendous battery life. Surprisingly, the price remains unchanged!
At Rs. 34,990, the Sennheiser Momentum 4 seems great enough as an upgrade to its predecessor, and it could give the new Sony WH-1000XM5 headphones tough competition as well. As a Sennheiser fan, I had to give the Momentum 4 a try and my impressions came out as expected – it is bloody good!
Design and Build
Possibly the only area where the Sennheiser Momentum 4 falls short of expectations. Sennheiser creates and continues on its signature design; we saw it with the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3. With the Momentum 4, the company ditches that signature metal adjust bracket design for a plain look. Not that it is built badly – in fact, the build quality surpasses some of its rivals in this price category. But I miss the steel headband and the fold-in design of the older model.
On the bright side, the Momentum 4 is now more comfortable to wear. The plastic construction is lighter and the extra cushioning under the headband as well as on the ear cups makes it software around the head. The signature Sennheiser fabric mesh is present atop the headband, which adds mild distinction, but it looks largely like the Sony WH-1000XM5 headphones.
There's more. The controls are now largely done by touch gestures. You swipe in forward/reverse directions for track change, and up/down for volume. I love the pinch in/out gesture to vary the balance between noise cancellation and transparency. The power and pairing is still handled by a physical button, and the charging via the USB-C port.
With a Sennheiser, your ears are always ready to expect a perfect crafting of finely balanced sound. The Momentum 4 does just that. The soundstage is wide and makes all kinds of genres to simply sound majestic. The mids sound pristine, all while the low-end is rendered with finesse, and the highs with utmost clarity. I am no musician but as someone whose ears are spoiled by some of the world's nicest headphones, the sound quality is finely balanced. This makes the Sennheiser Momentum 4 a pleasant gear to wear all day, and listen to all kinds of music. I don't say that for many headphones even at this price range.
Bass lovers shouldn't worry. With the Bass Boost enabled, there's ample low-end punch that sounds pleasant. For example, the track “Tere Mere” by Arman Malik sounds great – the drums and tabla sound exactly the way you expect, without spoiling the mids and vocals.
Helping the Momentum 4 here is the brilliant ANC system; or rather the variable noise isolation system. In the full noise cancellation mode, the Sennheiser Momentum 4 cancels ACs, ceiling fans, chattering people, office ambient sounds, and even my boss (Sorry once again, Harish :p). The isolation is also helped by the fantastic passive isolation that comes from those thick earcups. The transparency mode does the opposite and for a nicely padded headphone, it does its job nicely.
Then there's the call performance, which once again is brilliant. My voice through the onboard mics sounds great and the strong connectivity with my iPhone also lets it hold on to the call within my apartment, even when the phone lay in another corner.
Some of the Sennheiser Momentum 4's smartness comes from the companion app, which lets you manage multiple wireless connections, enable auto ANC, or adjust it manually, play with equaliser, and the Sidetone for calls. Plus, Sennheiser's Sound Zones and Sound Check features are present too – they still require creating a Sennheiser account to make them work. You can also play with Codec settings as well as check for updates from here.
The headphone itself can do on-head detection, failing which it switches off. The Smart Pause comes into play when you lift the right ear cup to pause the music; it doesn't work for the other side. The touch controls are quite sensitive and I never faced issues with detection, or accidental touches.
Oh boy! Sennheiser has outperformed here! When the brochure promised 60 hours of battery life with ANC, I scoffed and called it a bluff. However, after having used it daily for 3 hours (on an average) for two weeks, I could only drain the battery to 40 percent, and it hasn't gone down even as I write. And this is with myself alternating between Full ANC, medium, and Transparency, plus calls involved. Is there a powerbank inside, Sennheiser?
As a result, I couldn't test the charging speeds but Sennheiser says it can fill up the battery for four hours in 5 minutes, and I believe them, especially after witnessing the battery stamina.
I loved the Sennheiser Momentum 3 headphones for its no-nonsensical approach to audio and I l love the Sennheiser Momentum 4 even more. The audio quality has only improved, if ever so slightly, and it now has the battery life to literally make you forget about charging, even with ANC switched ON. That ANC itself has become great, and the comfortable padding only makes the overall experience sublime. The smart controls are thoughtful and they work well, and there's fast charging too (if you are into that).
At Rs. 34,990, the Sennheiser Momentum 4 becomes an easy recommendation for almost everyone with deep enough pockets, or strong enough passion. It faces strong competition from the Sony WH-1000XM5, which is said to have better noise cancellation. But then the Sony and the Apple AirPods Max, which is its other rival, can't quite match the audio finesse and the battery life.
- Exceptional sound
- Unbelievable battery life
- Comfortable to wear
- Smart companion app
- Simple design
- More expensive than rivals