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Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 vs. Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 ANC Wireless Headphones

Today, we compare the Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 over-ear noise canceling headphones vs. the Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 noise-canceling headphones.  

This article will primarily discuss how the two headphones compare in terms of build quality, comfort, design, and of course, quality of sound.  

If you are interested in hearing my full review of these two stellar headphones, as always we encourage you to check out our YouTube channel. Watch our most recent video on the Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 and Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4  headphones. 

 Let's get Started!

Build Quality and Design 

px7s2Starting with the build of the two headphones, the Px7 S2 is the heavier of the two headphones weighing 307 grams vs. the 296 grams of the MOMENTUM 4.  Both headphones are very lightweight and highly comfortable to wear.  

The clamping force is similar for both headphones, with the B&W’s having a bit more clamping force than the MOMENTUM 4.  So for users with larger heads, you may want to consider this.  

Both headphones’ synthetic-style pads feel soft and comfy.  The pads of the B&W Px7 S2 have a bit higher quality look and feel to them, but it could just be that the pads are more worn on the demo pair of MOMENTUM 4 headphones.  In my use, the MOMENTUM 4 pads and headband retain more heat for longer listening sessions.

I prefer the headband of the Px7 S2 over the MOMENTUM 4 for a few reasons.  The first of which is the material used for the tops of each of the headbands; the plastic-type material of the Px7 S2 won’t fray over time which may happen with the material on the MOMENTUM 4.  

The second reason is that the material underneath the headband of the Px7 S2 feels more premium, less like a rubber plastic material found on the MOMENTUM 4 as well as it doesn’t retain as much heat buildup as the MOMENTUM 4. 

Lastly, the adjustment arms of the Px7 S2 are made of metal, adding some weight and potentially additional durability. I found in my use that the cups of the Px7 S2 stay in place better than the plastic arms of the MOMENTUM 4 headphones.

Again both headphones are very comfortable to wear, and it will come down to the size and shape of your head and your preferences in materials.

A few things about the build I prefer of the MOMENTUM 4 headphones over the Px7 S2 is their touch controls allowing you to utilize the cups more quickly to change songs, toggle noise cancellation, take calls and increase or decrease volume.

I also think the Sennheiser Smart Control app is superior to the Bowers & Wilkins app.  Allowing you to adjust the EQ for three bands, a better user experience, more customized control, and easy device management.  

Both apps work well and will get the job done, but the Sennheiser app is a step ahead.  As far as ANC goes, they are similar without a drastic difference.  Neither headphones compete with the best headphones in this space for ANC; however, I prefer the sound signature of both headphones over the leaders for Active Noise Control. 

The Momentum 4’s ANC is more sensitive to having a proper seal vs. the Px7 S2, something to keep in mind if you wear glasses or a hat when listening, but both headphones worked well for gym sessions, working at my desk, coffee shop work, and walking my dog.

The Px7 S2 is offered in three colors: black, blue, and grey.  The Momentum 4 is offered in white or black.  Personally, I would not choose white as it tends to show dirt and use more quickly, and black is also more low-profile looking.  

Another area that the MOMENTUM 4 has an advantage over the Px7 S2 is its battery life.  With up to 60 hours of music playback, that is double the amount of playback time of the Px7 S2.  

Both headphones have wear sensors, so when taking off the headphones, music is paused, and music playback starts when placing them back on your ears.  Both headphones have a quick charge feature that allows you to get some additional playback time if you are short on time to charge.  

The MOMENTUM 4 offers 4 hours of playback time with a 5-minute charge, and the Px7 S2 offers 7 hours with a 15-minute charge.  Both headphones include good carrying cases and cables, allowing them to be used with a laptop plugged in.  

For call quality, I would choose the Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 over the MOMENTUM 4.  The Px7 S2 has a more natural sound quality for voices, and switching from music to a phone call is a more seamless experience with the Px7 S2.

So overall, I prefer the materials, build quality and look of the B&W Px7 S2; however, I like the touch controls and flexibility of the Smart Control app of the Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4.  Of course, this will come down to what you want and value most for your wireless headphones.

Sound Impressions

So, let’s examine how these two headphones compare from a sound quality perspective!  I listened to many genres of music across several of my playlists, using Tidal and Qobuz through ROON ARC on my iPhone, with noise cancellation on for both headphones and no EQ adjustments, and I will share my notes from a few of the tracks to give you some music-based impressions of how the headphones compare.

Listening first to Black Panther's “Wakanda,” a song I like for soundstage, dynamics, and how a set of headphones displays the horns.  When comparing the two headphones, the biggest standouts for me were a bit warmer, more present vocals from the MOMENTUM 4, more bass rumble from the drums, and more layering and depth to the stage.

Both headphones displayed the horns well, sounding slightly brighter than Px7 S2. The bass from the B&W is also a bit tighter in character vs. the looser-sounding bass of the MOMENTUM 4 on this track.  

The MOMENTUM 4 also made me perceive that the notes decay a bit slower, whereas the Px7 S2 sounded more immediate.  Overall, the Px7 S2 presents a more neutral and intimate sound signature for this song.

Listening next to “Mombasa” from the Inception soundtrack, a killer track to test the dynamics, punch, and speed of a pair of headphones.  The MOMENTUM 4 slams hard right out the gate with a good sense of punch and speed at this price point.  

Listening to the Px7 S2, the dynamics, and punch are much tighter, with a more defined and refined quality to the overall sound.  The B&W presents this track cleaner with more separation to the stage from the string instruments, drums, and percussion.  The Px7 S2 gives a sense of greater speed and clarity.

Listening next to the Last Samurai film score: A Hard Teacher, a beautiful orchestral composition from Hans Zimmer and crew featuring the Hollywood Studio Symphony.  I like this track for its ability to hear the timbre and definition of the strings and wind instruments and their placement on the sound stage.

Comparing the two headphones, the strings have more body and warmth to their sound as they are plucked on the opening of the track along with the wind instruments when listening to the MOMENTUM 4 vs. the more neutral sound signature of the Px7 S2. 

The Px7 S2 displays the string plucks, wind instruments, and strings with more definition to their sound, with a more neutral tone overall.  The soundstage from both headphones does a good job of defining and placing the images of instruments, with the Px7 S2 having a more defined shape to those images. The MOMENTUM 4 floats the instruments in a more holographic way with a bit rounder and softer outline of the instrument's images as they are displayed on their stage.  

The next track I listened to was “The Loxian Gates” from Enya. Again, the Px7 S2 sounds tighter from the drums and also presents Enya’s vocals a bit more forward with a bit more upper midrange and lower treble edge compared to the rounder, more robust bass from the drums, and slightly more laid-back warmer vocals from Enya when listening to the MOMENTUM 4. 

Listening next to “Dreams” from Fleetwood Mac, the biggest standouts between the two headphones were the more forward-sounding midrange of the Px7 S2 and more focus in the treble region which is highly noticeable from the cymbals throughout the track.  

Again, the MOMENTUM 4 presents more bass from the bass guitar, with a bit more warmth for the band's vocals.  Both headphones are enjoyable, with the Px7 S2 sounding more refined and the MOMENTUM 4 sounding more fun.  So, without adjusting EQ, it will come down to the type of sound you are going for.  I enjoy both headphones for their different sound signatures.

Listening to “Motherboard” from Daft Punk and the contrast between the two headphones' sound signatures is pretty stark, with the Px7 S2 giving a more defined and fast sound and the MOMENTUM 4 sounding more fun with an elevated bass signature and slower trailing ends of notes that seem to hold on a bit longer when compared to the B&W headphones.  

The finer, more subtle details on this song are more easily made out when listening to the B&W Px7 S2. The listener who likes to analyze music a bit more and see cleaner images of the different instruments and production on a track will be better served by the Px7 S2. In contrast, the signature of the MOMENTUM 4 may better serve the listener who wants to kick back and bounce with the music.

Speaking of bouncing, listening next to The Weekend’s Blinding Lights is a tale of the more defined bass and sparkly synths of the B&W Px7 S2 versus the looser sounding, the more significant rumble of the bass of the MOMENTUM 4. The Weekend’s vocals also present a bit more warmth and rounder edges when listening to the Sennheiser headphones.

One more song before I give my overall thoughts.  Listening to Snarky Puppy’s “Lingus,” a TSAV Jason favorite.  The dynamics and punch of the Px7 S2 are noticeably tighter from the very opening of the song.  Cymbals also have a bit more definition and sparkle; for this track, I prefer the more neutral sound of the Px7 S2 over the MOMENTUM 4 for this genre of music.  

For movies, both headphones were decent, with both signatures belonging to the music-first listening space, with use for watching films being secondary. The B&W Px8 is currently my favorite wireless headphone for watching movies at the time of making this article.  

Final Thoughts

So as always, it will come down to your preferences, the types of music you listen to most, and what you value most from your wireless headphones.  As always, I encourage you to listen to both headphones side by side to formulate your impressions, as we all hear a bit differently and differ on what we value or prefer in sound quality. 

We have these fantastic wireless headphones in our headphone bar, so if you are in SoCal, stop by and hang out with us and have your own listening party. 

If you are interested in trading up your old headphones or other gently used audio gear for a new set of headphones, check out ourtrade-up program, and don’t forget we will price match, other authorized dealers!  

We have some cool videos coming this year with new product announcements, so don’t forget to subscribe to ourYouTube channel to stay in the know!  

Until next time friends, remember, let the music be your guide! 

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