Sony WF-H800 Truly Wireless Earbuds review

Excellent in-ears with some serious sibling rivalry

Sony WF-H800 h.ear in 3
(Image: © TechRadar)

TechRadar Verdict

Sony’s latest true wireless in-ears, the WF-H800 h.ear in 3, are up against some tough competition from their own WF-1000XM3 siblings and, for the most part they seem to lose out – but there's still a place for these colourful ‘buds.


  • +

    Compact and stylish

  • +

    Top-notch sound

  • +

    Comfortable, secure fit


  • -

    Similar in price to the WF-1000XM3

  • -

    No waterproofing or ANC

Why you can trust TechRadar We spend hours testing every product or service we review, so you can be sure you’re buying the best. Find out more about how we test.

Like their over-ear counterpart, we rate the WF-1000XM3 as the best true wireless in-ears you can buy right now, so the fact that these fresh WF-H800 h.ear in 3 earbuds don’t quite hold up to them certainly doesn’t spell defeat.

As the name suggests, these new true wireless earbuds are part of Sony’s h.ear range, which sits beneath the flagship 1000X series in terms of pricing, and focuses more on giving listeners a unique array of colours and styles to better express themselves aesthetically.

Apart from the colour choices and more compact design, the lack of noise cancelling is perhaps the most immediate differentiating factor between these and their flagship counterparts, but much of the other great Sony features (excellent audio, for instance) are thankfully present.

Price and availability

The Sony WF-H800 h.ear in 3 retail for AU$349 in Australia, and while there currently isn't any indication of them being available in the US and UK, it may still happen down the track given that some other products in the h.ear range have seen a global release.

For reference, the WF-1000XM3 retail at AU$399 in Australia but, at the time of writing, you can get them from Sony direct for AU$319 and the h.ear in 3 for AU$299.


  • Tasteful colour combinations
  • Compact ‘buds and case
  • Comfortable and stable in the ear

The main strength that the h.ear in 3 boasts over its noise-cancelling Sony sibling is in its design – both aesthetically and practically.

It’s likely clear by now that the h.ear in 3’s various colour options are something of a selling point. It’s the first thing mentioned on the official Sony website, and rightfully so – for those seeking a repreive from the black or silver options of almost every other audio product, the vibrant offerings here are refreshing.

There’s five options in total, one of which is purely black if you’d prefer the discrete look, but the other four offer a variety of colour combinations and some nice speckled textures to make them unique. The pebbly green with its mottled texture and beige-pink trim was a favourite of ours, but they’re all rather striking in their own way.

They’re also a good degree smaller than Sony’s other in-ear options at the moment, offering a slightly more comfortable, secure fit and less of an unsightly protrusion. The charging case is also more petite and is considerably more pocketable as a result.

When you couple the overall compactness of the ‘buds themselves with their ‘tri-hold structure’ and the variety of in-ear tip sizes you get in the box, these Sony earphones always felt snug and comfortable in the ear.

When it comes to the user interface, the touch-sensitive buttons found on the WF-1000XM3 are done away with here and Sony has, instead, opted for a physical, clicky button for each ear piece.

In our experience, we preferred this form of interaction as it was much harder to accidentally press one of the physical buttons compared with touch sensors, and their placement meant you weren’t pushing them further into your ear canals (which has been the unfortunate case for some competing products).

Sony WF-H800 h.ear in 3

The WF-H800's charging case is similar in style but more compact than the WF-1000XM3's. (Image credit: TechRadar)


  • No ANC or waterproofing
  • Battery life could be better
  • Solid wireless connectivity

As we already mentioned, the charging case is more compact than that of the WF-1000XM3’s, but unfortunately this comes with a significant hit to the reserve battery life – 8 hours down from 18.

We’re thankful to see that you can still fast-charge the case via the USB-C port, injecting 70 minutes of playback time with only 10 minutes of charging, but the diminished backup battery reserve is a bit of a shame, especially considering the ‘buds don’t have to power any noise cancellation.

On that note, we’re not too fussed that these ‘buds don’t sport noise-cancelling abilities because the in-ear form factor tends to create enough of a seal to offer decent passive isolation anyway, but we are miffed that the lacking headline feature didn’t also come with more of a price reduction.

Given how compact and stylish the h.ear in 3 are, it would have been great to see Sony make them somewhat more robust – some water resistance for the earbuds and case, for instance – to help justify their cost and cement them as solid everyday 'buds.

The stability of the h.ear in 3’s Bluetooth connection never gave us any issues, and this can be attributed to the fact that each ‘bud individually connects directly to your device instead of having them rely on a connection between the pair.

Some other premium features have made it over to these earbuds as well – sensors to automatically play or pause music when taken out of your ear, integrated Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa voice assistance, and 360 Reality Audio that, although somewhat of a novelty, makes for a pseudo surround-sound experience.

Sony WF-H800 h.ear in 3

The h.ear in 3's odd shape makes more sense when in the ear - allowing for a snug fit and a stable connection. (Image credit: TechRadar)


  • Warm, balanced and clear audio
  • Sound enhancement and EQ settings
  • Some of the best in-ear audio available

You’ll be pleased to know that the h.ear in 3 retains everything that makes Sony’s personal audio products truly excellent – the sound quality. With direct comparisons, we couldn’t tell the difference in sound between these and the WF-1000XM3, which is to say they’re some of, if not the, best sounding in-ears on the market right now.

All the Sony bells and whistles are found here too, like the Digital Sound Enhancement Engine (DSEE HX), which essentially upscales compressed audio formats, as well as all the EQ options found in the companion Sony Headphones Connect app.

As with other Sony audio products, the overall sound profile is on the warmer side, with rich, full bass and a slight softening of the upper frequencies. While the low-end doesn’t overwhelm as much as the brand’s Extra Bass range, it’s still plenty powerful and punchy enough for those that like their kicks to thump and basslines to drive. 

Out of the box, most people will find the sound signature pleasing across pretty much any genre, with enough clarity and spatial separation to breathe new life into your favourite tracks. That said, there’s always the equalisation settings in the app if you’d like to tweak your experience further to your taste.

Sony WF-H800 h.ear in 3

The h.ear in 3 have eight hours of battery life in the 'buds and another eight in the charging case. (Image credit: TechRadar)

Final verdict

On paper and in practice, the Sony WF-H800 are exceptional true wireless in-ears. With their stylish, compact design, stable connectivity, and remarkably solid audio, they make for an excellent pair of everyday ‘buds. 

The main factor holding them back at this point is their in-house competition – the Sony WF-1000XM3 offer an extra ten hours of battery life and industry-leading noise cancellation for only AU$20 more (at least at the time of writing).

With that said, Sony earbuds and headphones are known to be discounted often, so while it’s hard to not recommend forking out the little extra to go for the WF-1000XM3 when the h.ear in 3 are full-price, they’re definitely worth scoring at a slight discount.

Harry Domanski
Harry is an Australian Journalist for TechRadar with an ear to the ground for future tech, and the other in front of a vintage amplifier. He likes stories told in charming ways, and content consumed through massive screens. He also likes to get his hands dirty with the ethics of the tech.