Master & Dynamic has not had a stellar beginning with its true wireless earbuds, but the company’s recent efforts have been much improved. Following the success of the MW08 Sport, M&D has released the MW09 ($349 or $399) earbuds, which feature a familiar design with enhancements to sound quality, active noise cancellation (ANC), and call performance. As always, the company’s high-end materials are on display, but the starting price is higher than most of its competition.
In terms of design, Master & Dynamic has made few changes. The same basic D-shaped housing remains for the outer portion of each bud, with the addition of a circular element on the outer panel where the trademark “M” branding resides. The controls remain on the top edge, with a volume rocker on the left and a multi-function button for playback and calls on the right. The company also offers a variety of fit options, including five sizes of silicone tips and two sizes of foam tips.
All settings and customization for the MW09 are managed through the M&D Connect app, which allows for battery life monitoring, sound presets, a customizable EQ, ambient sound mode, and other options. The earbuds offer a balanced, natural sound with great clarity, particularly for genres like bluesy rock, bluegrass, and classic jazz. The ANC setup includes three presets, with the Max option providing the best noise cancellation, particularly for high-noise environments.
The MW09 offers extended battery life, with additional hours when ANC is turned off. The earbuds also feature a quick charge feature, offering two hours of use in just five minutes. However, during testing with the All Day noise canceling setting enabled, the MW09 only lasted 10 hours, falling short of the stated 12 hours. Despite this, the battery life of the MW09 still ranks at the top end of most premium earbuds available.
Ultimately, while the MW09 offers many positive features, it faces stiff competition from other top-tier earbuds like Sony’s WF-1000XM5 and Bose’s QuietComfort Ultra Earbuds. Both of these options provide strong ANC performance and impressive sound quality, making them worth considering as alternatives to the MW09.