True Wireless Stereo (TWS) earphones have been made mainstream by Apple but the competition picked the pace quickly, and the wireless earphones market now is full of variety. While the Airpods, especially the Pro model, makes a better proposition for the iPhone users, there are earphones like the Sony WF-1000XM3 that are compatible with a wide range of devices and make a good deal for someone not restricted to Apple ecosystem.
Both the AirPod Pro and WF-1000XM3 have minimal profile with no flashy element and excessive built. The Apple AirPods Pro are lightweight and small. The earphones fit well in the ears and have a secure grip, which make them stick to ears during moderate and intense activities. That said, the AirPods Pro make a good audio companion while running, cycling and other activities, besides normal usage.
The Sony's WF-1000XM3, compared to AirPods Pro, are slightly bigger and excessive. The earphones do not get along well with sports activities because of lack of snug and secure fit. Besides, the WF-1000XM3 lacks any water and dust resistance. The AirPods Pro boasts IPX4 rating, which makes them sweat-and water-resistant.
Starting with the Sony WF-1000XM3, you get a wholesome sound experience through its 6mm audio drivers. The earphones deliver rich sound with clear details, even if the audio output’s loudness is set to maximum. The earphones are best suited for wide genre of music, including unplugged and pop albums. The earphones delivers deep bass, rich vocals and clean treble. Besides, there is Adaptive Sound Control, which automatically customises the audio profile based on location. The earphones boasts in-ear detection through built-in proximity sensor, which pauses the music as soon as you remove the earbuds.
In comparison, the AirPods Pro boasts Apple’s sound signature that is clear, clean, and bright. The AirPods Pro comes as a surprise as it packs deep bass that really feels something.
What separates both earbuds is the punchy bass that you get in Sony's WF-1000XM3. At high or maximum volume, the treble may not sound too sweet in AirPods Pro and that's where WF-1000XM3 scores well. A balanced sound tuning with non intrusive bass takes WF-1000XM3 ahead of AirPods Pro.
The AirPods Pro supports active noise cancellation and passive noise isolation. Therefore, the earphones filter good amount of external noise without causing any discomfort. The Sony's WF-1000XM3, on the other hand, supports noise cancellation that is not intensive but well refined.
When tested on a busy road with loud ambient noise levels, both the AirPods Pro and WF-1000XM3 manage to block good amount of noise, but some distractions did find their way in to the ears. This was not the case in park and malls and both the earphones filter ambient noise distractions.
It's difficult to pick what's better here because both AirPods Pro and WF-1000XM3 are really good at it.
The AirPods Pro and WF-1000XM3 offer decent on-battery time on a single charge. Sony earphones, including case battery, boasts an on-battery time of 32 hours, whereas, the AirPods Pro keeps the show going for around 24 hours. With noise- cancellation on, the battery back-up may come down.
Both the earbuds support fast-charging. The Sony WF-1000XM3 offer 90 minutes usage in ten minutes of charging and the AirPods Pro get for an hour usage after a five minute charge. The AirPods Pro supports wireless charging which the WF-1000XM3 lacks.
The Sony WF-1000XM3 costs Rs 19,990 and the Apple AirPods Pro is priced at Rs 24,900. The price difference makes WF-1000XM3 appealing, considering its strength and compatibility with wide range of products, including iPhones. The AirPods Pro make a good proposition for iPhone users only.