Leaked Sony WF-1000XM5 images show design changes, potential improvements

A leaked look at the upcoming Sony WF-1000XM5.
(Image credit: The Walkman Blog)

What you need to know

  • Design images of the Sony WF-1000XM5 have leaked, alongside some teardown views.
  • The earbuds appear to have had the design altered a bit, and consumers may find a more compact product that can fit in-ear a bit better.
  • The charging case looks widely the same with slight touches to round its edges some more, and it may feature a larger battery size for better earbud charging.

Sony's next iteration of its flagship earbuds has had their design and certain technical elements leaked.

The early look at the upcoming Sony WF-1000XM5 was spotted and touched up a bit by The Walkman Blog after the device passed through certification. The previous release, the WF-1000XM4, garnered mixed feelings from consumers due to its size and shape of them, although they were a bit of an improvement over the previous model.

Due to that, it appears as though Sony is implementing some changes to the buds, beginning with its size. The leaked images show a smaller, more compact 1000XM5 compared to its predecessor. The underside of the buds looks to be a bit more rounded to fit the contour of a human ear better.

The leaked image is of the right earbud and shows a tactile dot (previously placed on the left side bud) above what is speculated to be the microphone hole. It's also been found that the buds' exterior will serve as a touch panel for controls.

There is still a bit of a grey area with the leaked design and technical changes within the Sony WF-1000XM5, as well. Firstly, the buds do appear to sport a much glossier black finish. It's currently speculated that this may not be the final look considering this is simply an early version of the product for certification purposes. 

The Walkman Blog did include a quick teardown of the buds, looking for further insight into its potential technological advancements. While the photo offers information about its Bluetooth module and antennae, the battery does take up quite a bit of space.

That said, the actual size of the battery is up in the air. The 1000XM4 could offer six to eight hours of listening time before needing to hop back into the case to charge.

The case for the upcoming earbuds wasn't spared as we get a decent look at what Sony is aiming for. Its overall design is pretty similar to the previous iteration, although, it does feel a bit more rounded while still retaining that oval shape. One technological change can be assumed quite quickly by the pins featured on the interior. It looks like Sony has dropped one of the pins, taking it down to two for recharging and communication purposes with the buds.

The leak reveals the 1000XM5's charging case may offer a little more power for the buds. Allegedly, the case will offer an upgraded 5V = 230mAh battery over the previous 5V = 120mAh charging case. The LED light, to indicate its charging status, has also been moved to the exterior front of the case.

It's also been found that Sony appears to be continuing the trend of including wireless charging for the case, as a wireless charging coil was spotted in its leaked teardown.

It's still unknown at the time when Sony is planning on launching its newest WF-1000XM5 buds. However, the device did recently pass through the FCC, which could indicate that the product is getting closer to a launch date this year.

Nickolas Diaz
News Writer

Nickolas is always excited about tech and getting his hands on it. Writing for him can vary from delivering the latest tech story to scribbling in his journal. When Nickolas isn't hitting a story, he's often grinding away at a game or chilling with a book in his hand.