We named Sony’s WH-1000XM4s the best noise-cancelling headphones of 2020, and they’re still among the best we’ve ever tested. Amazon has them marked down to $248, their lowest price ever by $30. This early holiday holiday deal would make a great gift for music lovers or frequent travelers.
The WH-1000XM4s stood out to us for three reasons: Its top-notch active noise cancellation, excellent audio quality, and comfort. Sony has put a lot of effort into making sure its noise-cancelling headphones matched (or exceeded) the performance of companies like Bose, and it largely succeeded. These headphones can block out train, plane, and office sounds without requiring you to crank the volume past 70% in most cases. If you’ve traditionally had trouble sleeping during air travel, the WH-1000XM4s are a game changer.
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Naturally, the 1000XM4s also sound excellent, delivering crystal-clear audio right out of the box, but you can adjust the way they sound using Sony’s Connect app, which is available on iOS and Android. The app also gives you some control over their noise-cancellation settings, and whether to turn on the “adaptive sound control” feature, which allows the headphones to adjust how they sound based on your location.
Over-ear headphones have a tendency to weigh your head down, especially during extended listening sessions, but the WH-1000XMs avoid this issue because of the amount of padding Sony used on the earcups and headbands. They’re still heavier than a pair of earbuds or on-ear headphones, but you shouldn’t experience discomfort when wearing them for long periods of time.
Finally, the WH-1000XM4s get up to 30 hours of playtime per charge, more than enough to get you through a work day, continental flight, and several additional hours of music listening. The amount of playtime you actually get will depend on how long you keep active noise cancellation enabled and your listening volume. If you’re used to the five or six hours that most true wireless earbuds offer, the WH-1000XM4s will feel like a breath of fresh air.
Amazon’s discount on the WH-1000XM4s isn’t tied to a larger promotion, so we wouldn’t be surprised if this deal went away in a couple of days. If you’re in the market for a pair of over-ear noise-cancelling headphones under $300, don’t miss this discount.
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