There's no doubt that frequent flyers – along with plenty of more grounded folk – favour earbuds over headphones. They're smaller, lighter and less obtrusive – although that convenience typically comes with more than a dash of compromise, especially for the core duty of enjoying music.
Sennheiser's new CX Plus True Wireless noise-cancelling earbuds aim to change that, with the company leveraging its audiophile-level smarts despite a pleasingly affordable price of $260.
Its secret weapon? The "German-engineered TrueResponse transducer, an acoustic system that brings audiophile technology to everyday listening."
Developed for the audio specialist's premium line of headphone line, it's described as "a bespoke acoustic system" which "delivers true high-fidelity stereo with deep basses, natural mids and clear, detailed treble."
The CX Plus True Wireless also come with active noise-cancellation to dampen the distraction of those outside sounds, although the 'transparent hearing' feature lets in the sound when you want it – such as during a quick interaction with the barista or flight attendant – without the need to remove the earbuds.
In addition to customisable touch controls, there's even support for individually-tailored commands for controlling audio, calls and accessing digital voice assistants, with more personalisation via the Sennheiser Smart Control app, including EQ and 'Bass Boost' modes.
As is increasingly common with smart earbuds, the audio automatically pauses once you remove the earbuds – and instantly starts up again when they're back in place – with different sized silicon ear adapters to obtain the best fit for your ear canals and IPX4-rated splash resistance if you're poolside.
Sennheiser rates the battery life of its CX Plus True Wireless earbuds – which come with a charging case – at up to 24 hours of playback time, although no figure is given for talk time.
(One practical way to extend the daily battery life of these earbuds is to use just one earbud at a time, as they function independently – when one earbud runs low, slip it into the charging case and pop the fresh fully-charged bud into your ear.)
Sennheiser's CX Plus True Wireless earbuds land on September 28 in black or white.