The Best Bose Headphones

by Emma Baker, Senior Editor | Published February 11th, 2024 | Reviewed by Ted Wilson, Systems Engineer

Bose Headphones Reviews

Bose is one of the most popular and respected brands in the audio industry, known for its high-quality headphones and earphones that deliver excellent sound quality, comfort, and noise cancellation. 

Whether you’re looking for a pair of headphones for work, travel, gaming, or fitness, Bose has a model that suits your needs and preferences. In this article, we’ll review some of the best Bose headphones of 2023, based on their features, performance, design, and value.

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II

qc earbuds ii

Overall, my experience with the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II was largely positive. The combination of superior noise cancellation, comfortable design, and robust sound quality makes them a strong contender in the premium earbuds market.

Comfortable Earbuds

While the wireless Sports Earbuds maintain a somewhat bulky profile compared to other earbuds on the market, they are surprisingly comfortable. The earbuds fit snugly in my ears, staying secure during various activities, including light workouts.

Sound Quality and ANC

The sound quality of the QuietComfort Earbuds II is impressive. They deliver a bass-forward sound signature that enhances the listening experience, especially for bass-heavy genres like EDM and hip-hop. However, it’s worth noting that the extra bass can sometimes overshadow the clarity of instruments and vocals in more balanced tracks.

The ANC feature of these earbuds is where they truly shine. The ability to cancel out low-frequency noise is remarkable, making them ideal for use in noisy environments like public transport or busy streets. The ActiveSense Aware mode, which blends noise cancellation and transparency, is particularly useful in situations where you need to be aware of your surroundings while still enjoying your music, such as running on the side of the road. 

Functionality and Features

The QuietComfort Earbuds II support features like spatial audio and have good Bluetooth codec support, making them competitive with offerings from other leading brands. The integration with the Bose Music companion app is seamless, offering customizable EQ settings and granular control over the ANC levels.

Bose QuietComfort 45

QC45 Ted Wearing

 The Bose QuietComfort 45 headphones stand out for their exceptional comfort, balanced sound quality, and superior noise cancellation. They are well-suited for a variety of environments, from busy offices to long flights. While they come at a premium price, the quality and features they offer make them a worthwhile investment for anyone seeking a top-tier audio experience.

Design and Comfort of the QC 45s

The moment I put on the QC 45s, their lightweight feel, at just 240 grams, was immediately noticeable. The comfort was unparalleled, thanks to the soft ear cups and a headband that felt gentle over my head, avoiding any pressure points even during my marathon listening sessions.

Sound Quality

In terms of sound, the QC 45s lived up to Bose’s reputation. They struck a fine balance in audio, with a slight emphasis on bass that added a warm undertone without overshadowing the mids and highs. The clarity in vocals and instruments was impressive, making these headphones versatile for different music styles. The adjustable EQ in the Bose app was a handy feature, letting me tweak the sound to suit my taste.

ANC Capability

The ANC feature of the QC 45s truly set them apart. They effectively muted a broad spectrum of external noises, from the low drone of an airplane engine to the chatter in a coffee shop. The ability to adjust the noise cancellation level via the app was a game-changer, allowing me to customize my listening environment.

Battery Life and Connectivity

The battery life of the QC 45s was a standout, offering up to 24 hours of playback. This was a boon during my long-haul flights and workdays. The quick charging capability, providing 2.5 hours of use with just 15 minutes of charging, was a lifesaver on more than one occasion. The multi-device pairing was smooth and intuitive, making it easy to switch between my devices without any hassle.

Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700

headphones-original

The Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 are another great option for noise-canceling headphones. They have a slick and futuristic design that stands out from other, older models, such as the QuietComfort 45s.

Design and Comfortability of Bose 700s

The Bose 700 headphones boast a sleek, modern design that is both aesthetically pleasing and functional. The headband, with its seamless transitions and minimalistic approach, not only adds to the visual appeal but also contributes to a comfortable fit. During my extensive use, I found that the headphones offer a snug yet gentle grip, avoiding the common discomfort associated with prolonged use. The ear cups, with their soft cushions, create an immersive experience, isolating you from external noise while ensuring comfort.

Sound Quality and Noise Cancellation

The sound quality of the Bose 700 is nothing short of impressive. The headphones deliver a balanced audio profile, with crisp highs and deep lows, making them suitable for a wide range of musical genres. The active noise cancellation (ANC) technology is where these headphones truly shine. From my experience, the ANC effectively eliminates background noise, whether it’s the hum of an airplane or the bustle of a busy street, allowing for an undisturbed listening experience. The headphones offer multiple levels of noise cancellation, which can be adjusted to suit different environments – a feature I found particularly useful during my travels.

User Interface and Battery Life

The intuitive touch-sensitive controls on the ear cups make adjusting volume, skipping tracks, and taking calls effortless. The Bose 700 headphones also integrate seamlessly with voice assistants, adding to the convenience. The battery life, lasting up to 20 hours on a single charge, is commendable, ensuring that the headphones can keep up with a busy lifestyle.

Microphone Quality

Though I don’t normally notice microphone performance, the Bose 700s stood out as particularly high quality. During conference calls and casual conversations, the microphone delivered clear and crisp voice quality. It effectively isolates the speaker’s voice from background noise, ensuring clarity in communication.

FAQ

Are Bose wireless headphones any good?

Bose wireless headphones are very good, especially if you value sound quality, comfort, and noise cancellation. Bose wireless headphones have a balanced and neutral sound profile that is suitable for various genres and content. 

They also have a comfortable and lightweight design that is easy to wear for long periods of time. They also have excellent noise cancellation that can block out unwanted noises from your environment. Bose wireless headphones also have a decent battery life and support voice assistants and touch controls.

Are Bose headphones better than Beats?

Bose headphones and Beats headphones have different strengths and weaknesses, so it depends on your personal preferences and needs. Bose headphones generally have a more balanced and neutral sound profile, while Beats headphones tend to have a more bass-heavy and boosted sound profile. Bose headphones also have better noise cancellation than Beats headphones, as well as better mic performance and voice assistant support. Beats headphones, on the other hand, have a more stylish and colorful design than Bose headphones, as well as better battery life and wireless range. Beats headphones also support Apple’s H1 chip, which allows for seamless pairing and switching between Apple devices.

How to pair Bose wireless headphones

To pair your bose headphones with a Bluetooth device, follow these steps:

    • Turn on your headphones by sliding the power switch to the Bluetooth symbol and holding it until you hear “Ready to pair” or the Bluetooth indicator blinks blue.
    • On your Bluetooth device, turn on the Bluetooth feature and search for your headphones in the device list.
    • Select your headphones from the list. You may need to enter a passcode, which is usually 0000.
    • Once connected, you will hear “Connected to <device name>” or the Bluetooth indicator will glow solid blue.

How to connect Bose headphones to iPhone?

To connect your Bose headphones to your iPhone, you need to pair them first. If you have already paired them before, you can simply turn on both devices and they will automatically reconnect. If not, follow these steps:

    • On your iPhone, go to Settings > Bluetooth and make sure Bluetooth is on.
    • Turn on your headphones by sliding the power switch to the Bluetooth symbol and holding it until you hear “Ready to pair” or the Bluetooth indicator blinks blue.
    • On your iPhone, tap on your headphones name under Other Devices. You may need to enter a passcode, which is usually 0000.
    • Once connected, you will see a checkmark next to your headphones name and the Bluetooth indicator will glow solid blue.