Monday, June 28, 2021

Sennheiser CX True Wireless

The Sennheiser CX True Wireless are the latest wireless earbuds from the German audio giant. Picking up where the CX 400BT left off, they’re cheaper than their predecessors, in spite of coming with a host of upgraded features that include a longer battery life and better connectivity. 

The CX 400BT were already a very accomplished set of true wireless earbuds, offering an expansive sound and good touch controls – and it looks like the CX True Wireless are improved in nearly every way. 

We’ve only spent a short time getting to know the new Sennheiser buds, but we’re impressed so far – even if we do find them a little uncomfortable for our ears. We’ll be posting our full review soon, but in the meantime, you can read our initial thoughts on the Sennheiser CX True Wireless below. 

the sennheiser cx true wireless earbuds in their charging case on a wicker background

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Sennheiser CX True Wireless price and release date

The Sennheiser CX True Wireless will be available to buy from July 8 for $129.95 / £119.99 / AU$199.95. 

That makes them cheaper than their predecessors by a considerable margin; the Sennheiser CX 400BT cost  $199 / £169 / AU$299 when they launched in September 2020. They’re also less expensive than the Apple AirPods – unless you can find a real good deal on the popular wireless earbuds

Cheaper wireless earbuds are available, though few come with the respect a name like Sennheiser commands. Check out models like the Lypertek PurePlay Z3 if you’re on a strict budget. 

The price of the new Sennheiser buds puts them in direct competition with the Cambridge Audio Melomania Plus – a pair of wireless earbuds that we awarded a full five stars, thanks to their excellent audio performance and easy controls. 

sennheiser cx true wireless charging case with the earbuds on its right side

(Image credit: TechRadar)


The design of the Sennheiser CX True Wireless doesn’t deviate very far from the previous model, with a rather functional look that will appeal to minimalists – though it might turn off anyone who wants a little bling from their earbuds. 

Available in matte black or white, the earbuds themselves sport large, square housings that are engraved with the Sennheiser logo. These housing are touch-sensitive, allowing you to control your music playback and calls, as well as letting you summon your device's voice assistant.  You’ll find a range of eartips in the box, so you should be able to find a decent fit – that is, if the bulky housings don’t get in the way. 

Our ears are admittedly on the smaller side, but we found the housings to be incredibly uncomfortable. This isn’t an issue that everyone will experience, but it’s worth bearing in mind if your ears are of the petite persuasion.  

The CX True Wireless charging case also hasn’t changed significantly compared to the previous model, with a bulky build that might make it tricky to slip into a pocket. You can charge the case via a USB-C port – there’s no wireless charging here, but we wouldn’t necessarily expect it at this price. 

sennheiser cx true wireless earbuds on a wicker background

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Audio performance

Inside each earbud is Sennheiser’s TrueResponse transducer, which the company claims will help them to deliver “deep basses, natural mids, and clear, detailed treble”. 

Based on the short time we’ve spent with them, the CX True Wireless are certainly capable of meeting those claims. Listening to Al Green’s Let’s Stay Together we were struck by the richness of the bass frequencies, which drove the track with control and vigor. 

As with their predecessors, high frequency sounds – like the horn stabs in this track – sounded a little harsh, though we’d like to spend a little more time with them before we make a decision as to whether the CX True Wireless have made any improvements in this area. 

Vocals sound sublimely clear, with lots of detail from the harmonized backing singers. Overall, the soundstage feels surprisingly wide, with plenty of separation between the different frequencies, and a good level of clarity across the board. It’s just a shame that the fit issues meant we weren’t able to enjoy the listening experience fully. 

If you find the sound isn’t quite to your liking, you can adjust the EQ settings via the Sennheiser Smart Control app, either by manually altering the frequency sliders or by choosing from a variety of presets. We had a few issues connecting our earbuds to the app, so we haven’t tried this for ourselves yet – but we’ll be sure to do so when we carry out our full review. 

a closeup of one sennheiser cx true wireless earbud

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Battery life and connectivity

Compared to the CX 400BT, the new Sennheiser buds come with an improved battery life, with nine hours from the earbuds themselves, and a further 18 hours from the charging case – that’s an increase of seven hours.

Still, that’s not a class-leading battery life by any means (many wireless earbuds offer upwards of 40 hours nowadays), and it’s a shame that the case doesn’t provide more charges when you consider its size. 

Connectivity has been improved too, with Bluetooth 5.2 compatibility and SBC, AAC, and aptX codec support – that means you shouldn’t have any problem streaming hi-res audio tracks. 

Pairing the earbuds with our phone was a breeze, and we didn’t experience any annoying dropouts while we were testing them. 

You can also use each earbud independently if you wish, while dual microphones inside each bud should deliver clear calls; and, a new Sidetone feature is designed to make it easier to hear your own voice during calls. We haven’t had the chance to test this feature for ourselves yet, but it certainly sounds useful. 

Early verdict

Without testing them fully, we’re hesitant to give a definitive verdict on the Sennheiser CX True Wireless – but it does seem as though Sennheiser has made a few welcome improvements without increasing the price compared to the previous model. 

In particular, the battery life and connectivity of these earbuds have been given some upgrades that really make sense (even if we do wish the case would hold a little more charge). 

We want to spend more time with the CX True Wireless before assessing the audio performance, but again, they’re at least as impressive as their predecessors in this regard, with an expansive sound and plenty of detail. 

The only real issue we have with these buds so far, is the fit – and that’s not down to any problems with the eartips. It’s the size of housings that we found really uncomfortable, and we daresay others with smaller ears will feel the same. 

Saying that, there are plenty of people out there who loved the CX 400BT, and as the design is largely unchanged, we imagine there will be plenty more who fall in love with the CX True Wireless – especially at this price. 


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