I’ve got my hands on, and ears ready for Sony’s latest WF-1000 Headphones, this year the True Wireless Earbud variety, the fifth generation called, of course – the WF-100XM5’s.

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Now this isn’t a review, because at the time of publishing I don’t have access to an updated version of the Sony Headphones app, and Sony engineers tell me the call quality on this engineering sample isn’t what they’ll release – which is critical because the announcement actually says these will be “Sony’s best ever call quality” thanks to new advanced microphone technology.

What I can tell you is that once you get them out of the stylish yet utterly eco-friendly cardboard packaging, the case is simple, understated yet perfect. Fits very well in the pocket while seated or walking, and is smooth but not slick in the hand.

Sat upright it will wirelessly charge, and inside the earbuds are removed by kinda twisting them out toward the side. Takes a second to get used to, but then you’re good.

These are a mix of gloss and matt finish, which I think looks good, and of course there’s a range of tips, including a new smaller (SS or XS) tips for smaller ears.

It’s simple case of upping the game, Sony also say these are the best noise cancelling they’ve ever done, but I’ll be honest with you, on an initial listen on two flights, they are great, but no-where near the best on market. Again, I haven’t synced to the app to test that all is well with the fit and the settings, so we’ll leave that to a review down the track.

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What Sony is saying also is that this is going to be an impressive sound profile. Using what they call the “Dynamic Driver X” for the wide frequency reproduction, the WF-1000XM5 offers a richer and and more detailed vocal sound – and I think that’s right – I really think there’s a clarity to them that you rarely hear.

I tested multi-device connectivity and it switched between them perfectly, from my music on the phone to a movie on the iPad, really quite seamless and impressive.

Pre-orders start today, they’ll be available next month, and will be priced at $499.95. Here’s hoping they can live up to that price tag.