Successor to Sony's Flagship WH-1000XM3 Wireless Headphones Spotted in FCC Filing

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Sony could be about to launch the next generation model of its popular WH-1000XM3 over-ear noise-canceling headphones, if a new FCC filing is anything to go by.


The company's WH-1000XM3 cans, which we reviewed back in March, are considered by many to offer some of the best noise-canceling in the business, providing great sound, excellent comfort and long battery life.

Now it appears that Sony wants to go one better with news that the company has filed for certification for the next model in the series.

The new "WH-1000XM4" headphones aren't actually named as such in the filing, which doesn't reveal any specs or pictures either. However, The Verge notes that the product ID gives a good indication that the version number will be XM4. (The last two models had the version numbers of M2 and M3.)

With so much going for the current model, it's difficult to know what improvements Sony is aiming for in the XM4's. Having said that, the XM3 cans don't support dynamic switching between audio sources.

Bose's QC35's and 700's have no trouble pairing with two devices and automatically switching between them based on which one is transmitting an audio signal. We think it's baffling that the 1000XM3's lack this ability given how convenient the feature is, so hopefully Sony has been listening.

The filing offers no hint as to when the new model will be out, but the Consumer Electronics Show is coming up in January, so maybe Sony will announce the headphones then.

In the meantime, the WH-1000XM3's are still a top choice if you're looking to get some wireless noise-canceling cans for the holidays, and you can find places like Amazon and Best Buy selling them at around $280, which is a decent discount on their original $349.99 RRP.

Tag: Sony

Top Rated Comments

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10 months ago
Hopefully the mic will be improved too.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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10 months ago


Brit here, cans is typical informal for headphones.

Ok. Sounded more like 12 year old speak but thanks for the info. :)
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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10 months ago
These headphones are fantastic. I wore these on an 11 hour flight from Boston to Honolulu and the noise cancellation and battery life were excellent. Plus, the audio quality was excellent when listening to music or podcasts. The only things that I did not care for were the touch controls on the side and the microphone. I found changing the volume or skipping tracks cumbersome and always used my phone instead to change volume or skip tracks. If I got a phone call wearing them around the house, the person on the other end told me they could barely hear me.

I bought my wife AirPod Pro's for Christmas so I'm waiting to try those on a flight to see how the noise cancellation is. She's flying to Florida next month for a conference so I'll ask her how they perform. The carrying case for the Sony's isn't too bad to pack in a carry-on but I'd prefer the AirPods Pro's for their compactness. The Sonys would win for battery life though.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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10 months ago


Do you notice any hiss on the right side when enabling noise cancellation on the XM3’s? I just returned a pair as as soon as I had NC enabled there was a really distracting hiss and only from the right ear cup.

Not sure if it a fault or just the way the NC works on the Sony.

I know there is a very feint hiss on NC headphones, but as soon as you start with music or a podcast it is fine.

But the hiss was very distracting in audiobooks or quiet sections in songs.

I don’t have this issue with the AirPods Pro or QC 35s.

As well as annoying it almost affected my balance as it was only in one ear.

Very odd.

Returned them to try and figure out if it the Sony thing or just a faulty set

There is a slight hiss which is the noise cancellation but mine are about the same on both sides. When I wear them, I usually don't use them just to block out noise like the jet engines and not play anything. On my long flight, I was pretty much listening to music, podcasts, or watching movies the entire time. Once something is playing, I do not hear any hissing. I've never had an issue with them. You will definitely want to Sony app on your device so you can manage the headphones and get firmware updates. Mine are on the latest version and they perform beyond my expectations. My bother-in-law has a pair of QC-35's and the Sony's sound so much better.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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10 months ago
I'm always surprised when people hammer on the build quality of the 1000xm3's... Mine have survived multiple drops, being tossed around in a gym bag or backpack as well as the fact that I've got a huge melon... LOL
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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10 months ago


Cans? Non American here. Is this slang of any kind?

Brit here, cans is typical informal for headphones.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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