It happened. It finally happened. On Monday, Bose finally released a pair of noise-cancelling Bluetooth wireless headphones. Bose already had winning Bluetooth headphones with both the SoundLink On-Ear and SoundLink Around-Ear Wireless. Even if they are late to the game with the QC35 (QuietComfort 35) headphones, they still have almost everybody beat in the race.
CNET describes the QC35s quite positively.
“Like the similar looking QC25, this is a lightweight, very comfortable headphone and you get the same quality of noise reduction that you get from the QC25.”
Their hands-on report adds that the QC35s feel a lot like the SoundLink Around-Ear Wireless headphones, and they are right. However, the QC35s are slightly heavier and the silver QC35s look a lot sharper than anything Bose has come out with in years. But looks aren’t everything, and from one day of use, it’s safe to say that the Bose QC35s sound almost as good as they look.
First, let’s talk about noise-cancellation. The QC35s’ noise cancellation may be even slightly better than that of the wired QC25s. That’s not always a good thing, though; if you walk with these through busy traffic corners, you can get killed if you don’t enhance your visual senses. While working out with these at 24 Hour Fitness, it was difficult to hear a single thing outside of the music that was playing. Even when pausing the music, there was only faint noise.
Bluetooth won’t give you the same sound quality as wired headphones, but the sound on the QC35s comes as close as it can get. They sound similar to the Beats Studio Wireless headphones in that the sound provides absolutely thumping bass. However, the QC35s differ from the Beats headphones in that they offer stronger mid and upper ranges of the sound spectrum. The lower range is noticeably stronger, but the other ranges are definitely prevalent.
The only Bluetooth wireless headphones that may have an overall more appealing sound for a variety of listeners are the Sennheiser M2 Wireless cans that cost $50 more. However, if you are prone to listening more to EDM or hip-hop, you’ll prefer the stronger bass that is available on the QC35s, which are also better for voice calls.
While walking on a busy street, the QC35s cancelled out most of the noise from traffic while making a phone call. The voice quality was very good, and the person on the other end didn’t have to repeat herself even once. Bose is known for offering excellent wind-cancelling mics on their headphones that ensure clear voice calls.
Many people will appreciate the fact that the QC35s don’t require AAA batteries like Bose’s wired QC25s; they charge with a micro-USB cable and, according to Bose, offer 20 hours of battery life. From one day of use, it’s easy to determine that Bose may actually be underestimating the battery life. However, more tests need to be conducted in order to get a final conclusion.
If there is one thing to nitpick at, it’s that Bose’s new QC35 wireless headphones still feel cheap and full of plastic, although the silver coating takes away some of the minor frustration from this. They look beautiful but don’t have the solid build of competing wireless headsets by Sennheiser and even Bowers & Wilkins. However, when judging all the aspects that are important for wireless headphones in 2016, Bose may have just created the best wireless headphones the market has ever seen.
[Photo via Daryl Deino]