District 3 was eliminated from X Factor after losing the sing off against fellow group Union J in what was a battle of the boybands.
Louis Walsh's two groups had to sing for their place in the competition last night after they received the fewest votes from the public - the first time a judge has had two acts in the bottom two this series.
Mentor Walsh refused to choose which one of his acts he wanted to send home, leaving it to judges Gary Barlow and Nicole Scherzinger - who both binned three-piece band District 3.
Judge Tulisa Contostavlos' vote therefore did not count. But as consolation she said she would have saved the sing-off losers.
Visibly emotional Walsh did not take part in the vote, saying to host Dermot O'Leary: "Dermot, I'm not voting. I'm not sending any of these acts home."
District 3, who sang Bruno Mars' "Just The Way You Are" in a last-ditch attempt to stay in the singing contest, were thought to be not quite as "mature" as Union J by Scherzinger.
She said: "Boys, you have my heart, you really do. The group that I think is a more mature group, and a little bit more ready for this right now is Union J. I'm so sorry."
District 3 left Scherzinger close to tears with their version of Eric Clapton's Tears in Heaven last night.
But Barlow was unconvinced, saying there was "something" about the band that did not have "the edge".
Union J, who belted out a rendition of Adele's Set Fire To The Rain in the sing off, were highly praised by the judges last night after performing a version of Coldplay's Fix You.
On realising their fate, District 3 expressed disappointment and sadness at the fact their X Factor journey had ended, saying: "You know, it's the most gutting feeling in the world."
When asked by host O'Leary why he thought his two acts were in the bottom two this week, Walsh suggested it may have been the case the two boybands split the vote, but added District 3 have nothing to worry about.
"There's nothing wrong at all. They just didn't get enough votes," he said.
The Irish judge said he hoped the group get a record deal and added that they were a great group to have in his category.
"They are a dream to work with," he said.
Last year's winners Little Mix - the first group to win the X Factor- performed earlier in the show, followed by an appearance from Ed Sheeran.