Bowers & Wilkins PX7 Vs Sony WH-1000XM3: Which is Best?

b & w Px7 vs sony 1000xm3

This is the review of both the Bowers and Wilkins PX7 and the Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones. Both the headphones has almost the same features but some different features and their performance makes stand out.

B&w Px7sony-wh-1000xm3
Bowers & Wilkins PX7Sony WH-1000XM3
Best-in-class sound quality. Competitive battery life.
Robust Bluetooth connection. Dapper design.
Class-leading sound.
Stellar noise cancellation. Excellent battery life.
Lighter, comfier design.
Intuitive features and touch controls.
Tons of sound-customizing settings via Sony Connect app.
Earcups don’t collapse.
No swipe/touch playback controls.
Aesthetics feel less premium than on previous model.
Call quality could be better.
Brand Bowers & Wilkins Sony
Color Space Grey, Silver Black, White
Driver Unit 43.6mm 40 mm, dome type
Frequency Response 4 Hz-40,000 Hz
Impedance 47 ohm (1 kHz)
Sensitivity104.5 dB/mW (1 kHz)
Connector USB-C
Weight 310g
Battery life 30 hours
Impedance 16 ohm (1 kHz)
Frequency Response
Features Battery life: Max. 30 hours (NC ON), Max. 38 hours (NC OFF).
Bluetooth version 4.2.
Wireless freedom, Great Sound in silence.
Smart listening by SENSE ENGINE — automatically adjusts to your situation.

Expert Reviews of Bowers & Wilkins PX7:  

By Mashable 
The Bowers & Wilkins PX7 are fantastic wireless headphones, with excellent sound and a great feature set.

By Trusted Reviews 
With the Bowers & Wilkins PX7 has yet again produce a worthy headphone, with great sound and some excellent features. The ANC is good, if not as strong as other headphones and the weight may be troublesome for some, but nevertheless these are one of, if not the, finest-sounding wireless headphones at their price point.

By TechRadar 
Our repeat mentions of rival headphones throughout this review just goes to show how competitive it is at the top of the premium wireless noise-canceling headphones market.Make no mistake though, up top is exactly where the Bowers & Wilkins PX7s deserve…

By Expert Reviews 
In the end, though, it won’t be small differences in sound quality or the subtleties of one Bluetooth codec versus another that will make the difference for most people, it’s the price. And, on that front, the Bowers & Wilkins PX7 simply can’t compete…

The Bowers & Wilkins PX7 wireless noise cancelling headphones tick all the boxes when it comes to audio quality, design, comfort and battery performance. If you want your ears to experience luxury then these are the headphones for you.Related PostsNow…

Expert Reviews of Sony WH-1000XM3:  

I’m an audio geek, what codecs does it support?For those fussy about sound quality, one of the most enticing features of Sony’s noise-canceling headphones is that they support a wide range of codecs – easily one of the widest. The new WH-1000XM3 is no…

The Sony WH-1000XM3 is a great pair of noise-cancelling headphones that is suitable for anyone and everyone.

By Android Authority  
The WH-1000XM3 are a worthy successor to the popular WH-1000XM2 headphones, improving on them in a few subtle ways with the addition of USB-C charging and new ear pads.

By T3 magazine  
With the Sony WH-1000XM3 excellent sound quality meets the best noise-cancelling tech in the world, while the ‘extra’ features are useful without being gimmicky. In short, these are brilliant.

If money’s no object, then you’ll struggle to do better than the Sony WH-1000XM3. Not only do they sound great, but they offer 30 hours of listening time and have excellent noise cancelling built-in that really helps immerse you in your music or podcast. Even better, if you want to temporarily let outside noise in such as an announcement at a station, you can just cover the right ear to do that.

Detail Review:  


Bowers & Wilkins PX7

This is the Bowers & Wilkins’ first pair of ANC headphones. I think these headphones sound great and over all I really like their build quality. When it comes to everything else like active noise cancellation and fit, these headphones still need some work.

Sony WH-1000XM3

This headphone has the touch sensitivity behind the ear-cups which is something new and useful feature. This also has noise cancelling, Bluetooth, 30 hours of battery life, and a great sound and a lot more features which will be useful. 

bowers_wilkins_px7 2


Bowers & Wilkins PX7

When it comes to price, the Bowers and Wilkins PX7 retail for $400. The same as the original PX’s when they first went on sale and considering the PX7 build of materials, I don’t think $400 is that bad. 

The PX7 look very similar to the original PX. They have this metal plate on the ear cups, both the ear cups and headband are covered by fabric and they have real leather on both the ear pads and headband. You’ve got these carbon fiber arms which I personally really like cause they make these headphones very unique and I really like the forged carbon fiber look.

From a practical stand point, the carbon fiber on these headphones is all for show. These headphones weigh in at 310 grams which is pretty heavy compared to the competition. When you walk around with these headphones on or turn your head you can definitely feel all that weight.

When it comes to the the over all build quality and design of these headphones, I love how these headphones look from the side, but from the front, it’s not that much great. The headband on these headphones is not low profile at all. So, some people will might feel awkward wearing these out in public. But overall build quality wise these headphones are very solid.

Sony WH-1000XM3 

The build quality on these headphones are actually pretty good. They feel a little too light and little plastic. There is some minor creaking coming from the band but it shows no sign of braking.


Bowers & Wilkins PX7

When it come to over all fit and comfort, these headphones aren’t going to fit everyone. Just like the PX, the PX7 have a lot of clamping force, so they aren’t big head approved. Now, you can go and stretch out these headphones and lose them up a bit but to me they’re still a little tight. I can put up with them and wear them for hours on end but you never forget it’s tight. If you have a smaller head you’ll be fine but if you wear big head, choose any other headphones.

The ear cups on these headphones are very spacious and they’re very reminiscent to the ear cups found on the Bose NC 700. They’re going to have no problem fitting most ear types and since so little leather actually comes in contact with your skin, their ear pads barely heat up. The leather on these headphones feels very plastic. Supposedly its real leather, but it just doesn’t feel as nice as the leatherette on the Bose NC 700 and it defiantly doesn’t feel as good as the sheep skin leather on the Momentum 3’s. Even after allowing the leather on the PX7 to break in, they still feel lack luster.

Sony WH-1000XM3  

The pleather on both the ear cups and the headband has not deteriorated one bit and I’ve used it pretty much every single day since I bought them.

sony-wh-1000xm3 1


Bowers & Wilkins PX7 

The original PX came included with a quilted carrying pouch which for a pair of $400 headphones just isn’t acceptable. But, this time around the PX7 come with a hardshell carrying case. This is perhaps the one of the hardest cases I’ve ever seen. It has the same foot print as the Bose NC 700’s carrying case but it is a little thicker which could make traveling with these headphones slightly harder.

If you want to use these headphones with a wired connection there’s an easy to reach 3.5 millimeter audio jack, or you can also use their USB C port as a wired connection which is great if you’re an android user that’s subscribed to a lossless streaming service or if you have your own Flac files on your android device. Also, these headphones have APTX adaptive, so you’ll might not even need to use a wired connection.

When it comes to Bluetooth connectivity, these headphones are rocking Bluetooth 5.0 and they can be connected to 2 devices at the same time, so you can easily hot swap from one device to another. When it comes to watching videos with these headphones, if you’re an android user you going to the zero latency across the board. Where as if you’re an iPhone user there is a noticeable latency when watching YouTube videos and gaming but for everything else they’re perfectly fine.

Something Bowers and Wilkins definitely improved on is their wear sensors. The wear sensors on the PX’s used to really like to randomly play and pause your music if you were moving around too much with those headphones on. But, the wear sensors on the PX7 on the other hand don’t do that anymore which is good. But obviously, if you don’t want to use the wear sensors on these headphones, you can always just turn that feature off.

Something that is sorely lacking on these headphones is a proper ambient mode. Now with these headphones if you press and hold on their ANC button for 2 seconds, they’ll lower the volume of what your music and pump in the ambient sound around you. So, you can quickly talk to someone. Unfortunately you can’t have ambient mode on these headphones turned on and play music at the same time like on most other headphones these days. Even if you try to raise the volume on these headphones on both your phone and the headphones themselves the volume won’t raise from 20%. The PX7 just not have an ambient mode is a bit of a handicap these days.

Sony WH-1000XM3

The Sony WH-1000XM3 are a pair of noise cancelling headphones. They connect via Bluetooth to pretty much any device and have a touch pad on the right side of the headphones for audio control. They’re advertised to have a total of 30 hours of battery life. They also have a 3.5 millimeter audio jack right there so that you can have a wired connection without needing a charged battery.

The headphones can take calls activate virtual assistants like Siri and Google assistant and have a lot of different settings that can be controlled via an app on your mobile device, including a fully adjustable noise canceling profile that’ll allow you to do everything from single out human voices and almost completely block out airplane engine noise.

You can use the included 3.5 millimeter cable to connect to your device to get a wired connection that doesn’t use the headphones battery. It means the battery in the XM3 can be completely dead and your headphones won’t be useless but that does come with a few drawbacks. First of all the volume of the headset is slightly lower without them being turned on, there’s also a slight decrease in the punchiness of the sound and the headset overall will sound a little better on their own power. The other drawback is that the headset needs to be powered on to make use of the active noise canceling features. If the headset is off, you can’t use the ANC at all.

The interesting thing is though if you don’t want to use Bluetooth but you do want the active noise cancellation, you can turn on the headset to use the ANC and just used the wired connection for audio. The XM3 don’t actually require an active Bluetooth connection for the cancellation to work, they just need to be powered on.

Sony has reportedly fixed the cold weather issue whereby if you took your headphones outside the cold after being inside and the heat, they would start going confusing themselves. They would skip songs, the volume would turn up and down they would do all sorts of weird things. So, apparently that’s been sort of resolved if you update your firmware to the latest firmware inside the official Sony app. You’re gonna get a control now that allows you to disable the touch controls when you’re outside in the cold. So, they didn’t necessarily completely fix the issue.

They just have a better workaround whereby you can disable the touch controls which is great. The touch-pad still isn’t great regardless of whether it did have the cold weather issue or not.

There are buttons to control the active noise cancellation and to turn off or turn on the headset but having to swipe up/down, left and right on the ear cup gets really fast. Since it’s unnatural to swipe something up by your ear that you can’t see, it’s pretty easy to swipe the wrong way causing you to turn up the volume instead of skip a track.


Bowers & Wilkins PX7

For microphone, I personally don’t think that this headphone sounds that great. It sounds very muffled and shallow and I think it might sounds a little lighter than the Sony.

Sony WH-1000XM3

There are a couple of mics built into the headset in various places that serve two functions. First is sort of the ambient sound profile where the headphones taking sound from all around you and then project it into your ears, it’s a really neat feature that makes you feel like you’re not wearing headphones and it sounds and it works great.

The headset will allow you to use the built-in microphones to accept phone calls but most people think it sounds terrible and unfortunately, I have to agree. You’re much better off accepting the phone calls on your phone instead of the XM3, otherwise, you might get some complaints from people on the other end.

b&w px7 1


Bowers & Wilkins PX7

In 2019 having active noise cancellation that changes the way a pair of premium ANC headphones sound is important to point out cause a lot other recently released ANC headphones out there no longer suffer from this. In general the active noise cancellation on these headphones is pretty decent.

The PX7 block out a little less road noise than the Bose NC 700’s but they do a better job of blocking higher frequency sound like chatter than the Bose NC 700’s do. Still, the Sony 1000XM3 have the best performing active noise cancellation out there. But over all, I do think the active noise cancellation on the Bose NC 700 is over all superior to the PX7 because they have less cabin pressure.

Even though the PX7 don’t have a lot of cabin pressure its still noticeable and I do find myself having to pop my ears when using the ANC on the PX7 for extended periods of time. In addition, the ANC on the PX7’ changes how these headphones sound, Bowers and Wilkins still have a lot of improving to do on their ANC if they want to keep up with the big competitor.

Sony WH-1000XM3

The active noise cancellation is probably one of the most important features on these headphones. It’s not like that the the ANC doesn’t do anything at all to those kinds of sounds. Active noise cancellation will help but they will not completely block out the sound of human voices, you’ll still hear them if you’re not playing music or watching movies.

It shines in areas like airplanes and cars that have a constant and fairly even sound. It can almost completely drown out the noise from a loud airplane engine and completely block out the sound from a car ride. I have no doubt that the active noise cancellation on these headphones is some of the best on the market period.

If you’re a traveler and you want a pair of quality headphones for listening to when you’re on a plane or a train or a boat or car ride or anything, these are the pairs that you want.


Bowers & Wilkins PX7

Now when it comes to listening to music with these headphones like I mentioned earlier I love how these headphones sound. The special thing in this headphone is is their super wide sound stage and instrument separation. I don’t think that’s enough to please everybody out there. Now these headphones sound unique because they aim for a neutral sound signature, but you can still hear a lot of bass. Unlike the Sony 1000XM3 or the Beats Studio 3 where you can actually feel the bass, you don’t get any of that with the PX7 and unlike the Momentum 3 where the bass on those headphones really likes to resonate, You just hear the bass on these headphones.

I like how these headphones sound but they’re not going to please everyone. Personally, I do think the highs on these headphones can sometimes get a little carried away, so sometimes I wish these headphones had an adjustable EQ which they don’t. But, If you’re someone that likes a pair of neutral sounding headphones but doesn’t mind hearing a lot of bass, I think you’ll like these headphones.

It is important to point out that these headphones sound best with their active noise cancellation turned off. With the ANC on these headphones turned on, the sound-stage on these headphones gets narrowed. It doesn’t take a trained ear to hear the difference with ANC turned on or off.

Sony WH-1000XM3

Being a pair of headphones the sound quality is probably something interesting. They sound decent. The XM3 have a pretty flat profile without any really exaggerated areas. They’re not like most beats with a real punchy low end and they’re not a cheap pair of tinny sounding headphones. I like the way they sound personally but if you don’t you want to add a little more kick in the low end, you can adjust that with the equalizer in the official Sony app.


Bowers & Wilkins PX7

These headphones charge via a USB C port and they have an advertised battery life of 30 hours. But for me I’m getting more like 24 hours out of them with ANC turned on. Now a 24 hour battery life with ANC on is still perfectly fine and you should be able to go at least a week in between charges.

It is important to point out that these headphones can’t be used passively. In order to use these headphones even with a wired connection they need to have a charge. But, even if you are caught with a dead battery a 15 minute charge is going to get you 5 hours a playback time.

Sony WH-1000XM3

Battery life on the XM3 have been pretty consistent. Sony has advertised a total of 30 hours of battery life and it’s fairly accurate. Since they have a USB C port for charging, it takes them no time at all to recharge if they die on you.

sony wh 1000xm3 2


Overall, I really like both of these headphones. The Sony 1000XM3 are still my most recommend pair of ANC headphones out there. If you’re a constant commuter, these are the headphones to get just as long are your ears fit comfortably inside their ear cups. These headphones do everything very well but they specifically excel at Active Noise Cancellation. But I still highly recommend the PX7 because of their sound quality. Even though the Sony’s sound good, these sound better. The only major draw back about them for me is their fit.