The Bose QuietControl 30 wireless headphones won’t make their way into stores until next week, but this author has spent 15 minutes with them. Even though this author isn’t completely blown away, he believes Bose hit the exact right spot when it comes to mixing portability, noise cancellation, and sound. The QC 30s cost $299, but most will find they are worth every single penny.
Unlike the QuietComfort 35s, the QC 30s are earbuds connected by wires and a very comfortable headband. They are pretty much the wireless version of the QC 20 noise cancelling buds, which were groundbreaking when released in 2013. They were the first in-ear buds to offer excellent (for 2013) noise cancellation features and great sound. However, the dangling rectangular power strip from the cord turned off some. This is something you won’t have to worry about with the QC 30.
The QC 30 won’t fit in your pocket, but it doesn’t need to. The neckband, which looks big in pictures, is actually very light and almost unnoticeable. The earbuds protruding from the neckband with wires (the device is only wireless in that you don’t need a wire to connect it to your phone) fit comfortably, but feel somewhat big. Still, the sound they offer is better than just about any wireless in-ear buds that this author has ever tested.
It’s safe to say that if you liked the sound of the QC 20s and the over-the-ear QC 35s, you’ll be more than happy with the soundstage of the QC 30s. The sound is very good. However, once you try the Bowers & Wilkins P7 Wireless or the Sony MDR-1000X, you may be slightly disappointed. Both wireless headphones by Bowers & Wilkins and Sony offer stronger bass and better separation of channels.
Still, Bowers & Wilkins headphones don’t even offer noise cancellation (as a previous review on Inquisitr noted, that’s not always a bad thing), and they are anything but portable. Sony’s new wireless set offers noise cancellation, but doesn’t allow manual control of it like the QC 30s. The MDR-1000X is also not very portable. This isn’t to diminish both of these outstanding products, but it’s important to note that the QC 30s may offer the best overall package.
The QC30s allow you eight different levels of noise cancellation. Words cannot explain how helpful this is, but it’s not just for blocking out noise; it’s for the noises you want to hear as well. For example, great noise cancellation may be great on an airplane, but not so great when you’re jogging in traffic. The QC30s will allow you to lower the noise cancellation while jogging in traffic so you can hear the drunk driver that skipped the red light and is coming right at you. Unlike with 2013’s QC 20s, there is no audible hiss with the noise cancellation feature.
The QC 30s are great for making phone calls as well. Like the QC 20s, one could block out much of the noise from a large group of people. It’s like going inside your own private room to have a private conversation, even if the person on the other line will notice that there is a crowd (but they can still hear you clearly).
The QC 30s may not be for extreme audiophiles, but just about everybody else will appreciate them. It’s safe to say that with the QC 30s, Bose has a huge winner on their hands, and you can expect Sony, Sennheiser, Bowers & Wilkins, and other companies to put their own version of the QC 30s out within a year.
[Featured Image by Daryl Deino]