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Master & Dynamic MW08 vs Sony WF-1000XM4 (2021): Which True Wireless Earbuds Offer Better ANC?

If you’re on the hunt for a top-of-the-line pair of true wireless earbuds, you’ve probably come across the Master & Dynamic MW08 and the Sony WF-1000XM4. After all, both are highly-rated and they are directly competing against each other. The Master & Dynamic MW08 boast an excellent build quality that feature ceramic and stainless steel materials, while the Sony WF-1000XM4 are considered the best when it comes to active noise cancelling. So which of these two wireless earbuds should you buy? We compare the two to help you decide.

Master & Dynamic MW08 vs Sony WF-1000XM4 Comparison Chart

ModelMaster & Dynamic MW08 Sony WF-1000XM4
 Master & Dynamic MW08 True Wireless Earphones (Black Ceramic/Matte Black Case)Sony WF-1000XM4 Industry Leading Noise Canceling Truly Wireless Earbud Headphones with Alexa...
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
Driver11mm Beryllium6mm driver
ConnectivityBluetooth 5.2Bluetooth 5.2
CodecsaptX, AAC, SBCLDAC, AAC, SBC
IP RatingIPX5IPX4
ANCYesYes
Ambient ModeAwareness Mode, Voice ModeAmbient Sound, Quick Attention
Extra FeaturesExternal aluminum antennas
Ceramic material
Stainless steel case
DSEE Extreme
Fast Pair
Wireless charging
Battery Life10 hours (ANC)
12 hours (ANC off)
Charging case: 30 hours
8 hours (ANC)
12 hours (ANC off)
Charging case: 16 hours
Charging TimeEarbuds: 50% charge in 15 minutes, 100% charge in 45 minutes
Charging case: 50% charge in 15 minutes, 100% charge in 60 minutes
Qi wireless charging support
100% in 90 minutes
5 minute charge for 1 hour playtime
Color OptionsBlue Ceramic / Polished Graphite Case
Black Ceramic / Matte Black Case
White Ceramic / Stainless Steel Case
Brown Ceramic / Stainless Steel Case
White Ceramic / Matte Black Case
Black Ceramic / Stainless Steel Case
Silver
Black
What’s Included5 pairs of ear tips
Charging case
USB-C to USB-C charging cable
USB-C to USB-A adapter
Canvas pouch
3 pairs of ear tips
Charging case
USB-C to USB-A charging cable

Design

Both the Master & Dynamic MW08 and the Sony WF-1000XM4 are comfortable and aesthetically pleasing, but the former is better built.

master & dynamic mw08 vs sony wf-1000xm4 design
The Master & Dynamic MW08 (left) have a glossy finish while the Sony WF-1000XM4 (right) have a matte finish.

At a glance, it’s easy to tell which is which. The Master & Dynamic MW08 have a D-shaped body with a glossy finish. They not only look good, they are also well-built. The earbuds are made of aluminum, ceramic and stainless steel. This combination leads to a very durable product. The earbuds have an IPX5 rating, so they are water-resistant.

Meanwhile, the Sony WF-1000XM4 have a rounded form factor with a matte finish. They are nice to look at, and they feel good to the touch as well. As far as durability goes, these are great, even though they are made of mostly plastic parts. The earbuds come with an IPX4 rating, so these are water-resistant as well.

When it comes to their charging cases, there is no contest as the case of the Master & Dynamic MW08 is simply better. It has a more durable construction and it looks nicer. The case of the Sony WF-1000XM4 is your basic charging case that’s made of plastic. However, it does have support for wireless charging, so that’s a plus.

Both pairs are lightweight and they are comfortable to wear. They both come with different sized ear tips so that you can choose which ones fit your ears better. One notable difference between them is that the Master & Dynamic MW08 come with five pairs of silicone tips while the Sony WF-1000XM4 come with three pairs of foam tips. Silicone tips are more durable, but foam tips can form a better seal for a more effective noise cancellation.

Features

The Sony WF-1000XM4 offer better noise cancelling than the Master & Dynamic MW08.

master & dynamic mw08 vs sony wf-1000xm4 features
The Master & Dynamic MW08 (left) and Sony WF-1000XM4 (right) with their charging cases.

When it comes to noise cancelling, the Master & Dynamic MW08 are good, but not quite up to par when compared against the Sony WF-1000XM4. Building upon the success of the WF-1000XM3, the WF-1000XM4 offer improved noise cancelling with their new Integrated Processor V1. The foam tips that come with these earbuds also help with their passive noise cancellation. Overall, the Sony WF-1000XM4 are much better than the Master & Dynamic MW08 when it comes to noise cancelling.

Both earbuds come with their own companion app that you will want to get in order to take advantage of all their features. The Master & Dynamic app allows you to change your ANC settings, enable Ambient sound mode, activate in-ear detection and more. The Sony Headphones Connect app is similar in that it also allows you to tinker with ANC settings, Ambient sound modes and more.

Other features worth mentioning are the MW08’s external aluminum antennas that provide a more secure wireless connection and the WF-1000XM4’s DSEE feature. The DSEE (digital sound enhancing engine) feature of the WF-1000XM4 can upscale the bitrate of compressed audio files so that they sound better.

Sound and Performance

The Master & Dynamix MW08 and the Sony WF-1000XM4 have a similar sound profile, but you can adjust the latter’s EQ settings via the Sony Headphones Connect app.

master & dynamic mw08 vs sony wf-1000xm4 sound and performance
The Master & Dynamic MW08 (left) come with silicone ear tips while the Sony WF-1000XM4 (right) are shipped with foam tips.

For the most part, these two pairs of earbuds have a consumer oriented sound. They have an overemphasized bass response relative to the mids and highs. This is not exactly a bad thing, unless you prefer a more neutral sound.

The Master & Dynamic MW08 are great for bassheads since they can produce a thumpy and boomy bass. The mids are somewhat pushed back a little, but they are still present and you can hear them clearly. However, the highs are quieter, so you lose some detail, but not enough that the overall sound is dark and veiled.

The Sony WF-1000XM4 have a similar sound profile. However, they can be adjusted to your sound preference since the Sony Headphones Connect app comes with an equalizer. If you don’t like how they sound out-of-the-box, you can easily play with the EQ settings to get your preferred sound. This feature is not available with the Master & Dynamic MW08.

Battery Performance

When it comes to battery life, the Master & Dynamic MW08 can last up to 10 hours with ANC and 12 hours with ANC disabled. You also get 30 additional hours from the charging case, for a total of 42 hours, which is very good. It takes around 60 minutes to fully charge the case and 45 minutes to fully charge the earbuds. A 15 minute charge gives you 50% battery capacity.

Meanwhile, the Sony WF-1000XM4 has a battery life of 8 hours when ANC is enabled and 12 hours when it is off. The charging case gives you 16 more hours, for a total of 24-28 hours. A 5 minute charge gives you 1 hour of music playtime, and it takes around 1.5 hours to fully charge the earbuds. A nice bonus is that these earbuds can be charged wirelessly.

Verdict

If you’re after the best-in-class ANC true wireless earbuds, you have to go with the Sony WF-1000XM4.

Since they are priced similarly, you will want to go with the Sony WF-1000XM4 if what you’re after is the best ANC in the business. The Sony WF-1000XM4 is a worthy successor to the excellent Sony WF-1000XM3 as they continue to offer the most effective active noise cancelling in the market. In addition to having excellent ANC, they sound good and they offer nice features such as their DSEE. The Master & Dynamic MW08 are decent alternatives if you want a pair of true wireless earbuds with excellent durability and a more luxurious look and feel.

FAQs

๐Ÿ“Œ Are Master & Dynamic earbuds any good?

Yes, Master & Dynamic earbuds are good and they are worth buying. The MW08, for instance, have excellent durability and they are some of the best looking earbuds in the market.

๐Ÿ“Œ Are the Sony WF-1000XM4 good for gym use?

Since they are IPX4 rated, they are water-resistant, so you can use them in the gym.

๐Ÿ“Œ Do the Master & Dynamic MW08 have wireless charging support?

No, they don’t support wireless charging.

๐Ÿ“Œ Do the Sony WF-1000XM4 have multipoint?

Unfortunately, you can’t pair the Sony WF-1000XM4 to two devices simultaneously.

Last update on 2021-07-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Carlo Salvador

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Writer and researcher passionate about fitness, gaming and music.