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Sony WH-1000XM5 leak shows full redesign (update 5)

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Hmm what do we have here? Looks like the new Sony WH-1000XM5. Looks like it has leaked A LOT earlier than I expected. I received the leak last night but it was too late to make a proper post, with comparisons and analysis, so I apologize.

Anyways, recall back to my FCC WH-1000XM5 post, where I theorized that we would see a redesign since the FCC label moved to a different location. Well looks like the WH-1000XM5 redesign is pretty significant. 

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

As with the previous models, we have 2 colour options, black and silver. The black colour does look a bit different than the one used on the current WH-1000XM4, more charcoal like and less metallic/shinny. I tried to best show this with the comparison below. I used the flattest part of the headphones, the center of the touch panels. I know the photos are probably renders, but the colour differences are pretty obvious in the press photos.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

The design is very different to anything in the recent past from Sony and I cannot find any previous models which had a similar look. The new design brings a lot more elegance and sophistication to the model, closer to the Bose 700 and less current Sony. This is a good thing, Sony used to have some great looking products back in the day and it is welcoming to see a return to this.

Now time to compare the WH-1000XM5 to the WH-1000XM4.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5
Photo not to scale

The most obvious changes are the headband and the ear cups. The headband thickness is now uniform and the ear cups taking on a more symmetrical shape. The Sony logo has now moved from the side to the hinge. It looks like Sony has removed the NFC logo from the left side, but this might not mean NFC has been removed from the device. The ear cups have a completely smooth and chiseled appearance. We do not know how the hinge attaches to the ear cups, so we will have to wait for the release or teardown to see the construction. Perhaps there is some metal but we will need to wait for a hands on once they are released.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5
Photo not to scale

Comparing the ear cushions, it looks like the WH-1000XM4 cushions are slightly thicker, and looking at the high resolution photos of both models, it appears that the new WH-1000XM5 cushions have no texture on them and are all smooth, which could indicate a new material. Likewise the plastic which Sony used for the new model looks to be the same material as seen on the WF-1000XM4. This is especially evident on the silver model. I suspect the cushions are attached in the same way as before, with plastic clips.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5
Comparing the carrying case shows a pretty big change. Before the headphone would fold, where as the new model does not fold at all and is fully placed into the case, like the Bose 700. The cables look like they could be stored in the section under the headband in the case, covered by what looks like a flap. But this is only a guess on my part.

Now time to look at the design more closely to see what else the photos reveal. Starting off with the left side with the buttons.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

We have the NC/AMB button, to the right, we have what looks to be a mesh, most likely for a microphone. To the left we have the Power/Bluetooth button which Techniknews says is a slider, but it could just be the angle which makes it look like a slider. And finally we have the 3.5mm jack.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

While the amount of microphones may not change, their locations might have. Recall that the WH-1000XM4 has 3 microphones on the left side for voice pickup in an array (see teardown). It looks like we still might have 3 extra microphones, but spread out. It appears we have 1 voice microphone on the right and 2 voice microphones on the left. Perhaps the 2 microphones facing forwards are used to cancel/minimize noise during calls. These will probably be of the MEMS variety.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

One question is, where is the feedforward microphone? Is is in position #1 or #2? I feel it might be #1 with #2 being the hole for equalizing the pressure between the outside and inside.

There are no photos of the inside of he left cushion, just the right side, so it is unknown if the proximity sensor is still present or not. 

Update: I forgot to add this image last day, but a closer look at the hinge in black, shows what could be a metal surface. This could just be the texture of the plastic but it looks closer to a metal surface. This is just a theory, but once released we should know if there is any metal in the hinge.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Techniknews reports up to 40 hours of playback with ANC on, but does not specify which codec and what settings (DSEE extreme and speak to chat). My guess is this is SBC/AAC with DSEE Extreme and speak to chat off. If this would be with LDAC and NC on, this would be impressive. The WH-1000XM4 using LDAC, with NC on, DSEE/Speak to chat off, is up to 24 hours, jumping to 40 hours could be possible, but it would require a much larger battery but also increased weight. The website also claims there will be 2 processors for the noise cancellation, which is quite odd. If the WH-1000XM5 uses the Mediatek MT2822, the ANC is built into this chip and is customized for Sony. so not sure how a second NC chip would work here. Perhaps the second chip for voice call noise cancellation.

Once Sony announces the headphones, if 2 chips are present, it should be mentioned in the product details, if not we wait for a teardown to see what is inside. I will point out though, Sony mentions the "V1" chip in the WF-1000XM4, but this is just the Mediatek MT2822.

I am sure people are wondering if I know the price and availability, at this moment I do not, but I feel price may go up due to the global supply issues and increasing costs of materials, so save up. As for availability, FCC short term confidentiality ends in early August, so I would imagine around this time frame. Although this leak could indicate an earlier release or at least announcement. 

Update:

I have been looking more closer at the press photos and I believe there are more microphones than I initially thought. Aside from the 4 microphones for noise cancellation (2 x feedback & feedforward), we can see 3 mesh holes which look to house the voice microphones.

So starting off with this first photo, we can see 3 areas where there is a mesh (1, 2, 3). The others are the USB type-C port (#4), and the 3.5mm jack (#5). Notice that the 3.5mm jack is right beside one of the mesh areas (#2).

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Looking at this second photo we can see the controls. the 3.5mm jack (#1) and one more mesh (#2). This is the left side as denoted by the L symbol on the far right on the frame. This looks to be another additional microphone on the left side, for a total of 3 microphones for the voice pickup. I did mention this microphone/mesh in the initial post but did not specify what it was. It looks like the left side might have the microphone array again like the WH-1000XM4.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

The question now is, does the right side also have 2 microphones, front and rear? Unfortunately it is rather difficult to see the rear of the right side so that is a mystery for now. But it is plausible there could be another microphone there as well for additional voice call noise cancellation.

Therefore, counting all the microphones, we have now 8 microphones all together, 5 on the left and 3 on the right. This breaks down to 2 feedback and feedforward microphones for NC, and 4 microphones for voice. If there is one more microphone on the right side rear, that would be 9, but once we see more photos, this cannot be confirmed.

Update 2:

I ran 2 polls, one on twitter and one on reddit asking if the WH-1000XM5 being nonfoldable would be a deal breaker for users. The twitter results came out to 69% no and 31% yes. The reddit result was more evenly split, 51% for no and 49% for yes.

Update 3:

3 new photos have leaked, contradicting the 40 hour battery life from Techniknews. It is unknown if the 30 hours is with NC on and AAC or NC on and LDAC. If Techniknews' sources are correct, then 40 hours could NC on with AAC and the 30 hour is LDAC and NC on. What is not surprising is the box design, following the WF-1000XM4 and WF-C500 box. With this leak, perhaps a reveal will be coming sooner than later with retail availability in early August?

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5
Source: Reddit

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5
Source: Reddit
Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Source: Reddit

Update 4:

The WH-1000XM5 has appeared on Sony's encompass parts website. See the screenshots below in case Sony decides to remove it. And Sony removed the listing, ha obviously they visit the blog.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5
Source: Encompass

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5
Source: Encompass

Update 5:

The WH-1000XM5 has appeared on Sony Rewards, confirming the $399 price, being listed as 39,999 points. Of course Sony will remove this listing as well, so a screenshot below. Not much is revealed, but it does mention an " Aluminum coated LCP" diaphragm design. If anyone from Sony PR wishes to send me a WH-1000XM5 for testing, I would be more than happy to test it out.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5 price

 And now for the rest of the photos. As always leave any thoughts and comments below.

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5

Sony WH-1000XM5 WH1000XM5


16 comments:

  1. I was waiting for the pictures since the first leak, and I must say that I am almost not disappointed at all. The only thing that bugs me is that they don't fold like the xm4s. It's appearant that because of that reason, the case is bigger and that's kind of a problem for me, but I'm sure I'll get used to it. With that out of the way I'm really happy with how they look like. It's sleak, modern and nicely symmetrical. I sure hope that they add the new Qualcomm chip that'll probably allow us to listen to truly lossless bluetooth audio by using the new apX codec, instead of LDAC. I'm happily waiting for new information.

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  2. Mest hoppas man ju att de ska ha samma fantastiska brusreducering när man pratar i mobilen med de, som Bose NCH 700 har som tar bort allt bakgrundsljud och verkligen går att prata i. Är ju det enda som är dåligt i XM4. Samtalsljudet i XM4 är ju inte i närheten av Bose 700. Hoppas på bättre samtalsljud i XM5.

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  3. I have the bose 700 and thought about it when i saw the wh1000xm5. Sadly, it would mean that, for the anc being better, it will press more on the head, like the 700 does. So, better seal which means better anc just thanks to the seal. That may be why they dont fold like the xm4 or xm3.

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  4. I hope we gone see driver size increase like 50mm

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I doubt it, 40mm is plenty.

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    2. As a former EXTRA BASS user little bit of bass would be nice but still want that balanced design for mark 5’s drivers

      Delete
  5. Really want a white version as well. would look great.

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  6. Most people hope that they will have the same fantastic noise reduction when you talk on the phone with those who have the Bose NCH 700 which removes all background noise and can really be talked into. Is the only thing that is bad in XM4. The call sound in the XM4 is not close to the Bose 700. Hope for better call sound in the XM5

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  7. I just hope they'll have stricter tolerances for unit variation, all except a few(less than 1 in 5) XM3/4 units have very noisy microphones.(or is it the calibration settings that are overzealous? i don't know... all i know is that there are some "golden" units that have relatively low ANC white noise while all others suck royally.)

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  8. Super cool how the eco-friendly packaging introduced for Aibo is trickling down:

    https://www.sony.com.au/electronics/aibos-new-package

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  9. I am very very very very very annoyed by the non folding design. Space is a premium in my bag. I held off buying the XM4s for many years now, my XM3s hold up well. I wanted the Auto-stop/play function, like I said. My XM3s are still great. The new design and non folding is a deal breaker. It really is. I don't need design, but functionality.

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    Replies
    1. Yeah, I'm pretty much in your camp on this. Also needs better voice (which hopefully more mics, fix). But if it can't fold, I'm not sure I can carry. That would be a huge loss.

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  10. That you can not fold them I think matters less, have both XM4 and Bose 700 (not foldable) and do not think there are any major problems, have both my headphones (XM4 & Bose 700) in a soft cotton bag and they have not become injured or something. The case for my headphones is left in the box in the closet. What I hope for with the new XM5 is that they get as good call quality as the Bose 700 has. everything else is already perfect on XM4

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    Replies
    1. Space in the bag when travelling is the issue, for those of us who want folding.

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    2. very fair issue, hopefully the new case is not much larger than the old one.

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  11. They look pretty good, I like the redesign personally, I think the previous ones' design was becoming quite dated and bland so it's nice to see they're finally updating it IMO. Yeah the 'no-folding' is a bit of a shame but tbh the case doesn't look *that* much bigger and maybe the fewer hinges/moving parts will make them a little more sturdy/robust

    I still have my 'OG' MDR-1000X and have been thinking of upgrading to XM4's or so, but having seen these I think I'll just wait a bit longer and go straight to the XM5s when they come out.

    ReplyDelete

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