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Master & Dynamic’s brand new MW09 are finally here and represent a notable advancement in the company’s line of true wireless earphones. Leveraging the achievements of the MW08 Sport, these earbuds feature a distinctive design alongside enhancements in sound quality, active noise cancellation (ANC), and call clarity. Staying true to the brand’s characteristic style, premium materials are still being used in full force which may be why their starting price surpasses many rivals.

Master & Dynamic MW09 Active Noise-Cancelling True Wireless Earphones Review | TheEffect.NetDesign & Build Quality

Master & Dynamic overall approach to their earbud design is largely unchanged. Each bud’s outer part retains the familiar D-shaped housing, now with a new circular element housing the iconic “M” branding.

This addition is purely cosmetic, no extra touch panel or physical button accompanies it. Controls remain on the top edge, featuring a volume rocker on the left and a multi-function button on the right for playback and calls. Volume controls also activate/deactivate ambient sound and ANC through a long press on either end, yet it’s a simple on/off function, not cycling through all available MW09 options.

Master & Dynamic MW09 Active Noise-Cancelling True Wireless Earphones Review | TheEffect.NetFor anyone’s who’s been watching M&D’s developments and design choices over the years, you’ll know that their distinctive feature is their use of premium materials—typically leather, metal and glass. Like the MW08 Sport, the MW09 features aluminium and sapphire glass, housed in a sleek aluminium charging case. A Kevlar option for the case is available for an extra €50, exclusive to certain colours.

Despite these high-end details, the MW09 boasts an IP54 rating for dust and moisture resistance, while the case holds an IPX4 rating. Another  nice touch is how Master & Dynamic offer a broader range of fit options compared to many headphone companies, providing five sizes of silicone tips and two sizes of foam tips in the box.

Software & Features

All MW09 settings and customisations are accessible via the M&D Connect app. Upon selecting the device, the main screen shows combined earbud and case battery life. Navigating to the Sound menu through a gear icon grants access to sound presets, a fully customizable EQ, and ambient sound controls.

M&D Connect App | TheEffect.NetWithin the Sound menu, Sidetone for call voice feedback and the option to disable audio prompts are easily located. In the Settings menu, Master & Dynamic provides features such as in-ear detection disablement, adjustment of the auto-off timer, an acoustic earbud seal test, and Bluetooth connection management. Multipoint functionality is supported and works seamlessly also.

While the options are not overwhelming, they cover essentials with a reasonable level of customisation. For example, active noise cancellation and ambient mode each offer three settings, ensuring users are not limited to a single default configuration.

Sound & ANC Quality

Master & Dynamic consistently delivers when it comes to audio that is balanced and natural with exceptional clarity—perfect for extended listening sessions. Unsurprisingly, the MW09 continues this trend, particularly noticeable in albums like Amos Lee’s Mission Bell. This earbud excels across various genres, embracing the nuances of indie pop, bluegrass, classical jazz, and even the heaviness of rock, avoiding flat compression. For a more personalised experience, the Audiophile sound preset, focusing on treble and mids, stands out.

Master & Dynamic claims optimised microphone and sensor placement for ANC, introducing three presets: Max ANC, All Day ANC, and Adaptive ANC. The latter adapts dynamically to changes in the environment. While Max ANC effectively counters distractions, it comes with a battery life compromise. Notably, all presets struggle at volumes below 50 percent but, overall, the experience is a definite improvement over its predecessors.

Battery Life

Master & Dynamic extends MW09 battery life by two hours with ANC compared to the MW08 Sport, reaching 12 and 16 hours with ANC on and off, respectively. The charging case gains an additional two hours, totalling 32 hours. A quick charge feature also adds two hours of usage in five minutes, reaching 50% charge in just 20 minutes. These impressive battery stats place the MW09 in the top tier of contenders when it comes to overall battery life endurance.

Conclusion

Master & Dynamic’s MW09 deliver on a number of welcomed adjustments, particularly in sound profile and customisation. While ambient sound mode and multipoint Bluetooth are impressive, ANC performance is improved but still slightly behind the class leaders such as Bose and Sony.

For users who prioritise natural sound and premium materials, MW09 meets expectations, but those mindful of budget might need some additional persuading. If you do take the plunge though, you’ll be sure to be impressed by what Master & Dynamic are offering here.

Master & Dynamic MW09 Pricing & Availability

Master & Dynamic MW09 wireless earbuds are available now from masterdynamic.com, starting at €399.

Master & Dynamic MW09 Active Noise-Cancelling True Wireless Earphones Review | TheEffect.Net

REVIEW: Master & Dynamic MW09 Wireless Earbuds
  • Design & Build Quality
  • Software & Features
  • Sound & ANC Quality
  • Battery Life
4.5

Summary

Master & Dynamic’s MW09 deliver on a number of welcomed adjustments, particularly in sound profile and customisation. While ambient sound mode and multipoint Bluetooth are impressive, ANC performance is improved but still slightly behind the class leaders such as Bose and Sony.

John Reilly

John is Founder and Editor-in-Chief of TheEffect.Net. His favourite gaming series is Uncharted and his favourite film is Interstellar. He is also known to quote 'Father Ted' and Keith Lemon more than is normal. John@theeffect.net