Unbiased review of Bose QuietComfort Earbuds vs. key competitors... Read more
Test of Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II, Wireless, Bluetooth, Triple Black
- Excellent noise cancellation
- Great fit and comfort
- Improved voice calling performance
- Distinct, clear, and natural sound
- Versatile two-piece fit kit system
- Improved transparency mode
- Adjustable equalizer settings
- Pricey at $299
- Only available in black at launch
- No wireless charging
- Lacks multi-point Bluetooth pairing
- No support for Qualcomm’s aptX audio codec
- No high-resolution audio over Bluetooth
“In my honest opinion, the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds are a high-quality product—if you’re looking for a robust noise-canceling feature and superior sound quality, they won’t disappoint. They do carry a hefty price tag, but the comfort, sound clarity, and overall design make it a worthwhile investment. My personal encounter with battery life, touch controls, and the premium feel of the product align with the claims made by Bose. Though I’ve enumerated its exceptional features, the lack of wireless charging and multi-point Bluetooth pairing could be an area for improvement. As always, I’d advise potential buyers to weigh their personal priorities and preferences before making a purchasing decision.”
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|Model Name||QuietComfort Earbuds II|
|Form Factor||Over Ear|
|Connectivity Technology||Bluetooth, Bluetooth 5.3|
Introduction: Unwrapping the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds
Hello folks! Today, I had the absolute pleasure of unboxing and testing out the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds. For those who may not be aware, these were announced on the same day as the launch of Apple’s Airpods Pro 2 and iPhone 14 and were rather, unfortunately, overshadowed by the buzz created by Apple. So, let’s shine some spotlight on these earbuds today.
With a price tag of $299, these Bose earbuds are quite an investment. But as soon as I held the box in my hands, I was hit with a sense of anticipation. Casting my first glance at the QuietComfort Earbuds, the quality of its design was noticeable right off the bat.
Both the earbuds and their case perfectly encapsulate Bose’s subtle, sleek design philosophy. One thing’s for sure, these aren’t flashy, but they certainly convey a sense of premium quality, which I suppose aligns with their hefty price tag.
Apple’s Big Launch vs. Bose’s QuietComfort Earbuds
It’s intriguing to think that the QuietComfort Earbuds were introduced on the same day as Apple’s latest products. On the surface, it might seem like any product launched beside Apple’s would get eclipsed. But during my time so far with the Bose earbuds, I can confidently say that these have enough merits to stand their ground, even when compared to the Apple giants.
Not to mention, we must appreciate the fact that these two products cater to different audiences. Apple’s Airpod Pros 2 have their unique set of features optimized for the Apple ecosystem, while Bose’s QuietComfort Earbuds champion a more universal appeal. Of course, I’ll elaborate more on this in my upcoming sections.
However, my foremost task here is to give an unbiased review of the QuietComfort Earbuds – and to determine whether the significant price tag is justified. So, let’s unpack this experience.
Unboxing and Design: The Understated Charm of Bose QuietComfort Earbuds
- Bose QuietComfort Earbuds create impressive first impression
- Versatile black color appeals to wide arrays of tastes
- Earbuds and case smaller, but no wireless charging
Let me paint a picture for you. I was handed a sleek, minimalistic package, the kind that gives you those exciting vibes even before opening it. I peeled off the lid and there they were, the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds, contained within a solid, well-designed case. The first impression was impressive and invoked a feeling of elegance and quality.
Unearthing the Elegant ‘Triple Black’ Design
Available only in black at launch, Bose has affirmed its dominant style statement with these earbuds. To be precise, they are touted as being ‘Triple Black.’ It’s not just black; we’re talking about a deep, glossy black that adds a touch of sophistication.
While some may argue that more color options would add flare, the black color is versatile and will likely appeal to a wide array of tastes. The upcoming ‘sandstone’ variant does hint at Bose’s endeavor to embrace diversity in style, which is something to look forward to.
First-hand Review of its Pocket-Friendly Case and Earbuds
Setting the earbuds aside, I shifted my attention to their housing. And boy, it didn’t disappoint! The earbuds case is nearly 40% smaller than its predecessor , making it incredibly pocket-friendly. The earbuds themselves are about 30% more compact , striking the perfect balance between functionality and design.
The considerable reduction in size without compromising on the quality indeed deserves applause. The case comes with an in-built USB-C charging port, keeping it aligned with the current tech trend.
On the flip side, there’s a noticeable absence of wireless charging. For a product demanding a steep price, that’s certainly a rough edge. While it’s a convenience that’s quickly become standard among similarly priced competitors, the lack of it here doesn’t precisely mar the overall charm but certainly is a point worth noting.
Upon further inspection, the earbuds seem to have a sturdy and reliable build. They are not the lightest available in the market, but at less than .25 ounces , they certainly won’t feel like a burden to your ears.
To summarize, the unboxing was an exciting journey, and the design left me impressed. A bit more attention to the charging department would have garnered an A+, but for now, I’ll say that Bose has done a pretty decent job with the QuietComfort Earbuds. It’s definitely a thing of beauty that balances aesthetics and performance commendably.
Fit and Comfort: Getting Acquainted with Bose’s Two-Piece Fit Kit System
- Bose QuietComfort Earbuds feature a two-piece Fit Kit system
- Offers flexible, customizable fit with different size options
- Comfortable and user-friendly even after prolonged wearing
One of the first aspects of the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds that intrigued me was the implementation of the two-piece Fit Kit system. This system was clearly designed with user comfort and ease of use in mind, but how well does it hold up to real-world testing?
Exploring the ergonomics: Large Tips and Medium Stability Band
Look, everyone’s ears are different. What fits one person perfectly can be a complete miss for someone else, right? The Bose QuietComfort Earbuds come with three different size options for ear tips and stability bands, aiming to deliver a more flexible, customisable fit.
In my case, the large tips combined with the medium stability band worked like a charm. The earbuds fit snug and secure in my ears, maintaining their grip even during vigorous head movements. They felt stable, comfortable, and I never once anticipated them falling out.
Comparing the comfort with the Apple Airpods Pro 2
When it comes to comfort, believe me, I’ve had my share of experiences with several earbuds, including the Apple Airpods Pro 2. While the latter are lighter and generally comfortable, I found the Bose’s two-piece system to be a true game-changer.
If you’re someone struggling to get a secure fit with the Airpods Pro 2, like I did at times, then the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds might just be the breath of fresh air you need. But remember, comfort can be quite subjective, so these are based solely on my personal experiences.
With that said, the comfort element with Bose’s new fit system is quite impressive. Even after prolonged wearing, they remained comfortable with no sign of earache or discomfort. I’ve got to hand it to Bose, they’ve crafted something genuinely user-friendly here.
Sound Quality and Noise Canceling: Tapping into Bose’s Custom Tuned Sound
- Bose’s new Custom Tuned Sound Calibration optimizes sound quality
- Earbuds effectively reduce surrounding noise by about 60%
- Improved clarity, depth, accuracy, and bass in sound quality
Now, let’s delve a little deeper into these earbuds. More specifically, the sound quality and noise-canceling feature, because who doesn’t want their music crystal clear and uninterrupted, right?
Experience with Bose’s noise-canceling technology
The first thing that absolutely struck me was Bose’s new Custom Tuned Sound Calibration system. This features an auto custom tune element based on the shape of your ears and ear canal. Every time you place the buds in your ears, a proprietary tone is played, and a microphone measures your ear canal’s acoustic response. This process, although quick, is noticeable as it optimizes the noise canceling and the sound quality for your particular ears.
It’s honestly startling how much of the surrounding noise gets tuned out. Whether it’s nearby co-workers chatting, the hum of a home appliance, or even the hustle and bustle of the New York streets, these earbuds managed to muffle most of these sounds impressively. I’d probably peg the reduction at about 60%.
Personal assessment of the sound quality
- Deeper into the music experience, the sound seems to have more nuances compared to the original QuietComfort earbuds. I specially noticed the clarity, depth, and accuracy to be better.
- The bass has more definition and punch now. Even the instrumental separation is far more detailed, making each note more distinct.
- Not forgetting the vocals. The warmth in the male and female vocals was just right, leaving the tonal balance overall well-rounded.
Comparing sound quality and noise canceling with the previous version
While the drivers seem similar to the original earbuds, the sound experience is a whole level up, something Bose attributes to their custom tune technology. The original QuietComfort earbuds had good sound quality as well, but everything just seems more fine-tuned and natural with the new pair. It’s like an already delicious dish being sprinkled with just the right amount of spice.
To wrap it up, despite the fact that these earbuds come in on the higher end of the price spectrum, the sound quality and noise canceling technology might just be worth it for those who value a superlative auditory experience. That said, remember that sound and comfort are highly personal matters, and these views are based on my specific experiences with the product.
Transparency Mode: How ‘Aware Mode’ Changes Your Sound Experience
- Aware Mode is Bose’s improved transparency mode
- It provides a natural, lifelike sound experience
- Competes well with Airpods Pro’s transparency mode
Transparency mode is a feature I’m always eager to test. Bose’s version, known as “Aware Mode”, intrigued me greatly. Let’s dive into the nitty-gritty details of this feature, shall we?
What is ‘Aware Mode’?
Aware Mode is an improved transparency mode by Bose. The best transparency modes, like the one found on the Airpods Pro, make you feel like you’re not even wearing earbuds. You get to hear the world around you as if you’re earbuds-free. That’s the standard I set for Bose’s Awear Mode right at the outset.
A First-hand Review of the Improved ‘Aware Mode’
True to my expectations, Bose’s Aware Mode doesn’t disappoint. It provides a natural and lifelike sound experience, coming quite close to the ideal transparency mode reference I previously described. It’s like the outside sounds filter in without getting amplified or distorted, which is exactly what I was hoping for.
Airpods Pro Comparison
Contrasting Aware Mode with the transparency mode on Airpods Pro, I noticed the Bose buds hold their own impressively. Whilst they don’t exactly recreate the effect of being earbuds-free, they surely offer a good enough semblance of that, getting you quite close to that sensation. In this domain, the Bose QuietComfort earbuds proved they can go toe-to-toe with the mighty Airpods Pro.
The tradeoff between transparency and sound quality could be quite delicate to handle; however, Bose appears to have crafted its Aware Mode in a way that tips the balance more in favor of the listener’s comfort and lifelike audio experience, which for me, is a winning attribute.
Audio Performance: Unveiling the Sound Quality Improvements with Bose QuietComfort Earbuds
- Sound quality is superior with Bose QuietComfort Earbuds
- Custom-tuned sound calibration system optimizes individual sound output
- Exquisite balanced sound output transcends various music genres
Now, let’s dive into the true gem of this pair of earbuds – its sound quality. Bose has been a household name for its impeccable sound output and these QuietComfort Earbuds certainly don’t disappoint.
Decoding the Technology Behind their Superior Sound
When it comes to audio performance and sound quality, the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds hit all the right notes. It really seems to have made a big leap forward with its latest technology.
A unique custom-tuned sound calibration system has been introduced here which is designed to tailor not just the noise cancelling, but the sound quality to the shape of your ears. Every time you wear these earbuds, a proprietary tone plays and tunes the sound according to the acoustic response of your ear canals. It’s an amazing feature that really optimizes the sound output for every individual user.
Pitting the Predecessors Against the Latest Version
When compared with its predecessors, the difference in sound quality is clearly discernible. The clarity in sound, depth in the delivery, and accuracy in replication seem to have undergone a major improvement, even though the drivers appear to bear a striking similarity with the originals.
Everything sounds a bit more natural and clear on these earbuds. The bass delivers more punch, and there is more separation between the instruments, allowing each to be distinctly heard – an aspect noticeably appreciated on more intricate tracks.
One other thing that stands out is the optimal tonal balance that these earbuds offer—neither too heavy on the bass nor oversteering towards the treble. It then rounds off nicely with a hint of warmth, especially when listening to vocals, which honestly, leaves you with a delightful overall sound performance.
That being said, don’t forget that sound quality is a subjective matter, and what I might find the perfect amount of bass and treble could be completely different for someone else. But overall, these earbuds have produced an exquisitely balanced sound output that transcends various music genres.
Voice Calling Performance: An In-Depth Look at the Four Microphone System
- Four-microphone system improves voice calling performance.
- Enhanced noise reduction allows clearer calls.
- Microphone minimizes background noises effectively.
In today’s tech-savvy world, great audio quality is non-negotiable, especially when it comes to making and receiving calls on your earphones. With the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds, the voice calling performance is an aspect you’d likely be interested in. So let’s dive into that, shall we?
An Overview of the Microphone System
First things first, each of these premium earbuds comes equipped with a four-microphone system – two of which are beamforming microphones. The idea behind this is to primarily focus on picking up your voice. What does that mean for you? Ideally, clearer and more balanced voice calls. But does it really live up to the claim? Let’s find out.
The Real Sound
In my experience, while voice calling performance wasn’t the strongest suit of its predecessor, Bose has evidently pulled up its socks with the QuietComfort Earbuds. The overall microphone performance during the calls is noticeably improved. It now comes with better noise reduction, offering an enhanced voice pickup.
You may want to ask, “Alright! But how well does it hold up in real-world scenarios with all the background noises?” Well, allow me to share an instance. During my test run in the bustling streets of New York, I noticed that when spoken into, the microphone did an incredible job of silencing the background noises. The listener on the other end of the call gave positive feedback about the sound clarity and minimal disturbance from the street noises. Now that’s impressive, don’t you agree?Note:
It is worth mentioning that while there was a hint of residual noise heard when not talking, the microphone goes almost silent – as it ideally should.
Room for Improvement
Despite these marked improvements, Bose QuietComfort Earbuds are not without some drawbacks. During voice calls, it did seem at times like you’re talking from within a large room, not exactly the outdoors. This slight echo-like effect may not be a deal-breaker, but it’s certainly a point that could be improved upon in future iterations and is crucial to consider when making a purchasing decision.
In conclusion, while the voice calling performance is not absolutely perfect, it is significantly better than its predecessor. With the four-microphone setup and enhanced noise reduction, these earbuds certainly do a good job of ensuring your voice comes out clear and balanced in your calls. So whether you are hustling through the busy streets or basking in the quiet of your home office, the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds have got you covered.
Battery Life and Charging: Are Bose Earbuds Worth the Price Tag?
- Bose Earbuds offer impressive six-hour battery life.
- Charging case provides 18 hours additional playback.
- Lacks wireless charging feature.
Now, let’s discuss the question we’ve been tiptoeing around – are these earbuds worth the $299 price tag? With respect to battery life and charging, there is plenty to delve into.
First on the dock, the battery life. Bose claims the QuietComfort Earbuds offer a solid six-hour playtime with noise canceling on. I tested this myself, and needless to say, they delivered. The six-hour battery life – with top-of-line noise canceling, mind you, is quite impressive and matches up well against the competition, such as the new AirPods Pro 2.
The charging case then supplements this by providing roughly an additional 18 hours of playback. So, in terms of battery life and sustainability on-the-go, I’d have to give the Bose earbuds a solid thumbs up. But, we’re not done there yet.
The charging case uses USB-C for charging, which is pretty standard and convenient. However, when we’re talking about a pair of earbuds that costs nearly 300 bucks, I expected wireless charging. That’s where Bose falls a bit short. Many competitors in this price range do provide a wireless charging case, including the AirPods Pro 2. Hence, when Bose misses out on this, it’s a touch disappointing.
Conclusion – A Balanced Verdict
Here’s the deal – the battery is top-notch, and the charging speed is as expected, which gave me a great experience. However, the lack of wireless charging might be a turn-off, especially for those used to the cord-free lifestyle. So, it boils down to what matters to you more. If you’re seeking exceptional noise canceling with decent battery life, pull the trigger by all means. But, if you’re someone who values comfort and the latest trends, like wireless charging, you might want to weigh your options.
Overall, in the battery life and charging department, Bose delivers – it just isn’t a knockout punch, considering the price point.
Bonus Features: What Else Do Bose QuietComfort Earbuds Offer?
- Earbuds have intuitive, customizable touch controls
- Bluetooth 5.3 for solid connections, but no aptX support
- Adjustable Equalizer settings enhance listening experience
- Earbuds have an IPX4 rating, making them splash-proof
If you are a tech enthusiast like me, you know that headphones are not just about sound anymore. There are many other factors that come into play when considering the purchase of a premium product like the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds. So let’s plunge into those special features.
These earbuds’ touch controls were a pleasant surprise. It made controlling volume as simple as a swipe gesture. There’s a certain level of convenience these intuitive controls offer, and they are slightly customizable, which is a plus, given that many earbuds in this price bracket don’t always deliver this option.
Equipped with Bluetooth 5.3, these earbuds provide ample range and solid connections. They use the AAC and SPC audio codecs; however, there’s no support for Qualcomm’s aptX audio codec or multi-point Bluetooth pairing. Considering the price tag, the lack of these features was a bit disappointing. There’s hope, though, as a Bose representative informed me that they might add these features in the future. Although it doesn’t affect the overall sonic performance, it’s something worth mentioning.
Adjustable Equalizer Settings
Honestly, I was genuinely pleased with this feature. With the adjustable Equalizer settings, you get a chance to tweak the sound profile and customize it according to your preference, something which can go a long way to enhance your listening experience.
Lastly, it’s important to address that these earbuds come with an IPX4 rating, indicating they are splash-proof. This point might not seem like a big deal until you are caught in the rain or sweating during an intense workout session, and your earbuds survive perfectly.
While Bose has lived up to its name in terms of sound, noise cancellation and comfort, the lack of modern features such as wireless charging and multi-point Bluetooth pairing tends to limit the overall utility of the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds for some users. However, if sound and noise cancellation top your priority list, these may be the ideal earbuds you are looking for.
A Comparative Study: Bose QuietComfort vs. Sony’s WF-1000x Mark IV and Samsung Galaxy Butts 2
- Bose QuietComfort offers more balanced sound quality
- QuietComfort’s noise cancellation outperforms competitors
- Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 best for Samsung device owners
In this section, I shall delve into a comprehensive comparison of Bose QuietComfort Earbuds with two other high-ranking competitors: Sony’s WF-1000x Mark IV and Samsung Galaxy Butts 2.
Side by side with Sony’s WF-1000x Mark IV
I have thoroughly enjoyed my time using Sony’s WF-1000x Mark IV earbuds, which boasted of pristine sound quality and great features. However, after comparing both alongside, I noticed the Bose QuietComfort had some slight edges. For a start, their sound quality, while equally impressive, seemed more balanced in the Bose earbuds. The bass felt more defined, and each instrument came through more distinctly.
As far as noise cancelling goes, the QuietComfort earbuds appeared to edge out the competition once more. They managed to muffle about 60% of people’s voices during commute time compared to Sony’s performance.
Lastly, the voice calling feature in the Bose was a point of notable improvement, eliminating almost all background noise during calls, which I found lacking in Sony’s WF-1000x Mark IV, where background noise was still slightly noticeable during phone calls.
Comparing them with Samsung Galaxy Butts 2
Now, comparing the Bose with Samsung Galaxy Butts 2, it gets quite interesting. Galaxy Buds 2 offers certain high-resolution audio features best suited for Samsung Galaxy device owners, which, admittedly, Bose earbuds lack.
However, when it came to the physical comfort, I must say the Bose’s two-piece fit system felt more secure in my ears. This particular feature might sway individuals like me who prioritize a secure fit in their earbuds choice.
In terms of sound quality, I felt the Bose were indeed a notch higher, playing into its favor. The noise cancelling of the Bose earbuds was also comparably superior, proving incredibly effective in muting environmental noise, which might be a game changer for potential buyers.
To wrap up this comparative study, while all three earbuds pose a good run for their money, certain aspects of the Bose QuietComfort did stand out, making them a strong contender into the premium earbuds market. However, factors like device compatibility and individual user needs can tilt the balance in the other direction.
Conclusion: My Final Verdict on the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds
With the curtain falling on this comprehensive review, it’s time to give my final thoughts on the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds. After experiencing and testing every feature they have to offer, I have to say, these earbuds have a lot going for them. But are they worth the hefty $299 price tag?
- Sound Quality & Noise Cancellation: Whether you’re looking to escape into a world of your own with your favorite tunes or make calls in the busiest places, the sound quality, and noise cancellation of these earbuds are quite stellar, probably the best on the current market. The impressive sound quality, coupled with the advanced noise cancellation, certainly makes the audio experience worth it.
- Fit & Comfort: Thanks to Bose’s two-piece fit kit system, these earbuds also earn a thumbs up in terms of fit and comfort. They’re snug, secure, and quite comfortable even when worn for extended periods.
- Price: While the features, sound quality, and comfort are commendable, the price point is certainly on the steeper side. That said, you are paying for quality, design, and brand value.
- No Wireless Charging: In an age when wireless charging has become increasingly common even among lower-priced competitors, the lack of this feature is a rather notable omission.
So, circling back to the million-dollar question–are the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds worth $299? From my perspective, if sound quality, fit, and improved calling performance are top priorities for you and you’re willing to splurge a bit for quality and brand reputation, these earbuds could indeed be a worthy investment. If you’re on the fence, give them a try. But do keep an eye on the price – there are rival products around that may offer comparable features for less.
I hope this review provides you with a clear picture and aids you in making an informed decision. As always, your preferences and use cases primarily govern your final pick.
Should you buy the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II, Wireless, Bluetooth, Triple Black?
Buy it if…
You value superior sound and noise cancellation
The Bose QuietComfort Earbuds offer impressive noise cancellation and sound quality, tailored to the acoustics of your ears.
You need earbuds with good stability and fit
The new two-piece fit kit system offers greater flexibility for a secure fit and a tight seal, especially if you’ve struggled to achieve a secure fit with other earbuds like AirPods Pro 2.
You demand longer battery life
With a battery life rated at six hours with noise cancelling on, these earbuds could be an excellent choice if you need your earbuds to last for extended periods.
Don’t buy it if…
You’re on a budget
At $299, the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds might not be the best choice if you’re looking for a more affordable option.
You prefer earbuds with wireless charging
No wireless charging feature available on these earbuds, while many other earbuds in this price range do offer it.
You need multi-point Bluetooth pairing
The earbuds currently lack support for multi-point Bluetooth pairing, which could be disappointing if you switch between devices frequently.
- What is the color of the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds at launch?
The Bose QuietComfort Earbuds are available in ‘Triple Black’ color at launch. A ‘Sandstone’ color variant is expected to be released later.
- How does the new Two-Piece Fit Kit System of the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds work?
The Two-Piece Fit Kit System offers separate ear tips and stability bands in three different size options. This system provides more flexibility to get a secure fit and tight seal.
- How effective is the noise cancellation feature of the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds?
The Bose QuietComfort Earbuds are very effective at noise cancellation. They are capable of muffling most sounds around the user, including the noises of busy streets, subway rides, or loud HVAC units.
- How does the Bose’s ‘Aware Mode’ function?
Bose’s ‘Aware Mode’, also known as the transparency mode, allows external sounds to come through, making it sound more natural and lifelike. It gives the effect of not wearing earbuds, allowing the user to perceive the world around without taking off the earbuds.
- Is the battery life of the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds really six hours?
Yes, the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds have a rated battery life of six hours with noise canceling on.
- Do the Bose Quiet Comfort Earbuds support wireless charging?
No, the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds do not support wireless charging. They are charged using a USB-C cable.
- How are the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds compared to Sony’s WF-1000x Mark IV and Samsung Galaxy Butts 2?
The Bose QuietComfort Earbuds surpass both Sony’s WF-1000x Mark IV and Samsung’s Galaxy Butts 2 in terms of sound quality, noise cancellation, voice calling performance, and fit.
- Are the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds worth the $299 price tag?
Based on its features such as superior sound quality, effective noise cancellation, and improved voice calling performance, the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds seem to justify their $299 price tag.