In the not-too-distant past, people wore headphones solely for entertainment. Not anymore. Today headphones have become an all-day, everyday companion. People use noise cancelling headphones, in particular, for work as much as for play. We currently offer several styles of noise cancelling headphones, all of them featuring proprietary Bose noise cancelling technology that makes quiet sound quieter and music sound better.
Bose is synonymous with great headphones and with noise-cancelling too. The US audio firm was the first to offer its customers the silent treatment and is still very much at the top of the game, which can make choosing the best Bose headphones tricky.
But that's where we come in. Our experts have done the hard work for you, testing and reviewing all the best Bose headphones on the market today, so you can be sure that whatever you buy has the What Hi-Fi? seal of approval.
If you want a set of robust, travel-friendly wireless over-ear headphones you can put on and largely extinguish the outside world for up to 24 hours, the Bose QC 45 has the edge over most of the competition at the price.
Thanks to Bluetooth 5.1, the Bose QuietComfort 45 now offer true multi-point pairing. These headphones also have better microphones than their predecessor's the QC35 II (below), so you can expect better voice pickup when taking phone calls.
The Bose QuietComfort 45/QC45 Wireless are the best Bose headphones we've tested. These are the next generation of the discontinued Bose QuietComfort 35 II/QC35 II Wireless 2018, and even though they don't offer a ton of improvements over the 35, they're a great pair of over-ear headphones. They're very well-built, lightweight, and amazingly comfortable. While they don't have features like an EQ to customize their sound, they have a very well-balanced sound profile suitable for most genres. There's some overemphasis in the bass range that adds extra thump, punch, and warmth to your audio, and their very accurate mid-range response ensures vocals and lead instruments sound clear and detailed.
If you're specifically looking for headphones to use at the office or while you work from home, look at the Bose 700 Headphones. They offer a much better microphone performance than our top pick, so they're a better choice if you need headphones to make calls during your workday. The integrated mic has a good recording quality and does a great job separating your voice from ambient sound, so it'll be easy to understand you even if you're calling from a busy office. They also have an ANC feature that does a fantastic job of isolating you from ambient noise, meaning you won't have a problem hearing your call. Their comfortable, well-padded design means you can wear them for long hours without much fatigue.
Their sound profile is well-balanced, with a very neutral mid-range response, so voices reproduce clearly and accurately. They also work with an app that has a 3-band graphic EQ that you can use to customize it. They also support multi-device pairing, which is nice if you're always switching between using your phone and computer. However, the touch-sensitive surfaces on the ear cups are tricky to use compared to the physical buttons found on some Βose headphones, including the Bose QuietComfort 45/QC45 Wireless.
Their controls make it easy to change the track or turn up the volume when you're on the move. While they don't block out much ambient sound, you might not mind this since it allows you to monitor your surroundings if you're exercising outdoors. If you want headphones that block out even less ambient sound, you might prefer the Bose Sport Open Earbuds Truly Wireless, which are designed for that purpose. They're also a great option for workouts and have an ear hook design that sits outside your ear. This design also makes them less stable and comfortable, though.
Like Bose, Sony makes many different sorts of headphones, and their noise cancelling over-ears, like the Sony WH-1000XM5 Wireless, are often compared to similar headphones from Bose. Both brands have options with very strong noise cancelling, but Bose products tend to have a more neutral sound profile, while Sony headphones like the XM5 pack a lot of extra bass. Bose generally makes more comfortable headphones. However, if you're looking for sound customization features like virtual surround sound or high-resolution audio, you might have better luck with Sony.
Sennheiser offers a diverse line of headphones, including earbuds and over-ear headphones. Across the board, they tend not to have the same great noise cancelling performance as Bose headphones, meaning casual use options like the Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless don't offer much over similar Bose headphones like the Bose QC45. However, they offer more budget-friendly options. Sennheiser is the better brand if you're looking for audiophile headphones with an open-back design and a neutral sound profile.
Bose's earbuds and over-ears are competitors to Apple products like the AirPods Max Wireless and Apple AirPods Pro 2 Truly Wireless. Bose has an edge with noise cancellation, making their QuietComfort line a better option if that's a priority. Even though Bose headphones aren't the most customizable in most cases, they're more likely to have an app with features like an EQ and presets. However, they don't have Apple's sleek design, especially when it comes to earbuds, aren't usually as well-built, and naturally don't have as many features for iOS users.
Overall, Bose makes well-rounded headphones that provide an unparalleled level of comfort. Many of their headphones also have very good noise cancelling and sound well-balanced. However, Bose tends to make comparatively expensive headphones that feel a little plasticky compared to other headphones in the same price range. Their over-ear lineup also tends to leak at higher volumes, which might not be ideal for all environments.
One-off products that aren't part of a larger line-up, including the Bose 700 Headphones Wireless, which are ANC over-ears, and the SleepBuds, which don't work as conventional headphones but play noise from a dedicated app meant to help you sleep.
Bose is a well-known brand, popular for its excellent noise cancelling and incredibly comfortable designs. They produce well-rounded and versatile headphones that also deliver in the sound department. However, their models are comparatively more expensive and not as well-built as other headphones in the same price range.
Bose has long delivered value in the audio category, from your home to your car and private listening, and its latest selection of headphones, speakers, and home theatre systems showcase its continuation on trend.
Bose offers a wide selection of headphones and earbuds to suit different listening needs. Wireless over-ear noise-cancelling headphones that fully encompass you in the music and block out ambient noise are ideal for commuters, private listening, or when traveling by plane or train. Meanwhile, sports earbuds, including small, unobtrusive true wireless earbuds in finishes like black and orange, fit securely into your ears for private listening while at the gym, or engaging in physical activity. They are sweat- and weather-resistant and come with a charging case.
Bose headphones and earbuds include features like long battery life, built-in mics for making and receiving phone calls, and compatibility with the Bose Connect app, which you can use to manage multiple Bluetooth device connections.
QuietComfort 35 headphones II offer the same unmatched combination of acclaimed noise reduction technology, wireless freedom, audio performance, dual-microphone system and 20-hour battery life as QuietComfort 35 headphones. However, QuietComfort 35 wireless headphones II also have a new Action button on the left earcup. In countries and languages where voice assistants, like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant*, are available, the Action button gives you instant access to voice controlled tasks. In countries where voice assistants are not available, it lets you quickly toggle through two different ANR settings for optimal performance wherever you go. 781b155fdc