ONE of the side-effects of this whole lockdown/social isolation thing is that a lot of us simply aren’t getting all that much exercise anymore.
OK, as a gamer I’m not exactly going to be running a four-minute mile anytime soon (or ever), but even I’m aware that with COVID-19 restrictions easing a bit, now is a good time to get out and get more active while still keeping at least 1.5m from other people, who have also decided now is a good time to get out and get active.
A decent set of headphones is a big help in getting you moving, and there are (unsurprisingly) a lot of active lifestyle headphones on the market to choose from.
Sennheiser are well known for their quality audio products, and I admit to being a fan of their gear – most recently, I reviewed their GSP 370 Wireless Headset which has a literal 100 hour battery life.
The latest set of their headphones to land on my desk are the Momentum True Wireless 2 (TW2) earbuds, and I’m going to go right ahead now and say they are superb.
Everything about the TW2s was quality. They were well made – they survived a couple of falls from my ear to the tiles unharmed – the sound was great, they were comfortable to wear.
I loved how the Momentum TW2 units just worked out of the box. A quick charge via the USB cable to make sure they had enough juice to be useful, pair via Bluetooth, and away I went.
Even better: The app isn’t required, and if you do use it, there’s none of this stupid account creation that plagues so many other single-use apps.
I don’t know about you, but I am tired of having to create yet another account with a burner e-mail address and password just so I can do a one-time setup of something to adjust the EQ or update the firmware or something like that.
The Sennheiser app doesn’t need an account or a login, it paired with my earphones on the first go, and so far has never bothered me with notifications or anything else – it’s been simple, lightweight and straightforward.
The sound quality on the Momentum TW2s was really, really good – rich and deep, which I like, with clear audio across the board.
Obviously this is a bonus when playing games, too. In particular, for something like World of Warships: Blitz, naval artillery really brings the boom and it’s good to have that reflected in the audio experience too.
The active noise cancellation works very well, but I was also impressed by the sound pass-through which meant I could, if I wanted, still hear what was going on around me. In a “stuck at home” sense it meant I could hear if the kids needed help with something or the cat was trying to get destroy the shopping bags again, but while outside it meant I could hear traffic and things like that, so I wouldn’t get run over while crossing the road or bowled over by an oncoming cyclist.
As with other Bluetooth headsets, they also work with telephone calls, and the controls are all easy and straightforward to use – the automatic play/pause when you put the earpieces in or remove them was a particular highlight.
The units are IPX 4 rated (splash resistant) and also Google Assistant or Siri compatible, depending on whether you’re using Android or iOS.
Battery life is seven hours in the earpieces and another 21 from the case battery, which charges via USB-C connection. The case itself is also quite stylish, featuring a grey fabric coating. It sounds silly, but the fact it wasn’t black or white actually made it stand out a bit more for me and made it easier to find when I’d put it down on a cluttered table or desk.
The only thing I could really criticise the headphones for is the same thing that all “pod”-style wireless earphones suffer from, and that’s the feeling they’re going to fall out of your ears (no matter what size rubber earpiece you’re using) and get lost, or fall into a sink full of water or something.
In this area something like the Plantronics Backbeat Fit 3200s or Beats Powerbeats Pro have an edge (they have ear-hooks to ensure the earpieces can’t fall out), but they also seem to be designed with vigorous exercise/training use as a primary focus as well.
In every other respect, however, the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 ticked every box and proved themselves to be a outstanding set of wireless headphones
With an RRP of $499 they’re not cheap, but they’re worth it – as long as you’re not prone to leaving your earbuds behind when you’re out and about.