It’s not all that often that we see an accessory updated within just a few months of the first release. But that’s exactly what we have with the Master & Dynamic MW08 Sport, which are a slightly different version of the MW08 earbuds we’ve previously reviewed.
In our original review, I gave the M&D MW08 a 4.75 out of 5 rating, as the battery life was incredible, the earbuds were comfortable to use, and the design was sleek and unique. But there are a few reasons why the original MW08s didn’t garner a perfect 5 out of 5. One of these problems has been solved with the new MW08 Sport, but did Master & Dynamic do enough to push the score up?
Master & Dynamic MW08 Sport Specs
- Weight: 9 grams per earbud
- Drivers: 11mm Beryllium
- Bluetooth: 5.2 w/ aptX, AAC, and SBC
- Active Noise Cancellation: Yes
- Ports: USB-C (charging port)
- Battery Life: Up to 12 hours without ANC / 10 hours with ANC
- 50% charge in 15 minutes, 100% charge in 45 minutes
- Total of 42 hours with included charging case
- Controls: Buttons
- Digital Assistant: Google Assistant, Alexa, Siri integration
- Wear Detection Sensor: Yes
- Dual Device Connection: No
- Water Resistance: IPX5
- Colors: White Ceramic, Black Ceramic, Brown Ceramic, Blue Ceramic
- Price: $349 (see the latest prices on Amazon)
Master & Dynamic MW08 Sport Review: Design
This is going to feel like a comparison to the original MW08, but that’s just what happens when new products are released so close together. It’s also obvious that Master & Dynamic saw a few things that needed to be improved, and that’s how we ended up with the MW08 Sport.
Looking at the earbuds and cases side-by-side, the differences are quite minimal. The graphite-look case has been replaced with a Kevlar one, but we still have the same glossy finish on the earbuds, along with the hardware button controls on the top.
However, this is also where the biggest differences between the two sets of earbuds lie. The move to a Kevlar case opens the door for wireless charging compatibility. This also explains why and how M&D was able to launch its new MC100 Wireless Charge Pad.
With the MW08 Sport, Master & Dynamic also opted to use a different material for the glossy outer portion of the earbud. Instead of the ceramic exterior found on its predecessor, the MW08 Sport now uses sapphire glass. This results in slightly different colors, as the black colorway actually looks black, and less like gunmetal or dark gray.
Moving to the sapphire glass over the ceramic for the exterior also brings a surprising benefit. The weight of the earbuds themselves has been reduced, coming down to 8.6 grams from the 9 grams offered before. This may not seem like much, but if you happen to be working out, any extra weight being shaved off, especially in your ears, can really provide a more comfortable fit.
And speaking of fit, included with the MW08 Sport are a total of seven different ear tip options. There are five silicone tips, which are the same ones included with the MW08. However, there are also two different memory foam ear tip sizes available. Not only do these help to provide a better seal for the ANC, but it also helps keep the earbuds actually in our ears for long periods of time.
Master & Dynamic MW08 Sport Review: Audio Quality and Battery Life
Looking at the spec sheet, there’s practically no difference between the MW08 Sport and the MW08. Both are using 11mm, Beryllium drivers, along with including ANC and a total of six microphones split between the two earbuds. We couldn’t discern any differences between these models, so it’s pretty obvious that Master & Dynamic feels confident in the sound profile for the MW08 lineup.
Battery life was also the same, as the company rates the MW08 Sport for up to 12 hours on a single charge. This drops down to 10 hours when using either ANC or Ambient Listening and we didn’t find anything to the contrary in our testing.
With the addition of wireless charging via the Kevlar case, the company also introduced its MC100 Wireless Charge Pad. The charger provides up to 10W of juice, which offers enough power to get you a 50% charge in 30 minutes. M&D also states that you’ll be able to use this charger with the MW08 Sport to get up to 100% in 100 minutes.
Master & Dynamic MW08 Sport Review: Verdict
If you went out and picked up the original Master & Dynamic MW08s, you don’t need to run to pick up the MW08 Sport. Even with the change from ceramic to sapphire glass, the weight difference is negligible for many. But we must admit that we are extremely happy to see wireless charging added, along with the new Kevlar case.
The biggest problem that we have is that to accommodate the changes in the case, added IP rating, and the addition of wireless charging, this forced Master & Dynamic to up the price. The MW08s were already pricey as they were, coming in at $299. And the MW08 Sport is even higher, with a $349 price tag.
While we still love the MW08 Sport, the company just didn’t do quite enough to really “wow” us this time around. The changes made are great and for the better, but an extra $50 might be a tough pill to swallow. Even still, unless you already own the MW08s, you won’t be disappointed with the MW08 Sport.