- Best active noise cancellation hands down
- Superb comfort for long periods of time
- Music quality and detail falls down when compared to similar models
Bose QuietComfort headphones have been around for the past 15 years or so, and I remember trying them for the first time as a young teenager while visiting the States. I was blown away then, and am still blown away at the quality of the noise cancellation on the newly released Bose QuietComfort 35 II headphones.
This time around though, to keep separated from the stiff competition from the Bowers & Wilkins PX Wireless and the Sony WH-1000MX2s, Bose have included the Google Assistant voice controlled software into their headphones. Without this though they’re essentially the same headphones as the original Bose Quiet Comfort 35s, and we all know they were the best headphones on the market at one point.
There’s something charming about the Bose QuietComfort 35 IIs. They’re covered in a soft touch matte black, which includes the Bose logo on each side. They feel as if they’re made from plastic but they’re very sturdy and could probably survive a few bashes in a bag. It does come with a hard carry case though so if you’re worried about scratches, then you’re covered.
The advantage of these being made from plastic is that they are very, very light. This transforms into literally to name of these headphones… comfort. These are definitely one of the most comfortable headphones to wear, especially if you’re going to be taking them on a long haul flight for example. The foam hugs your ears like a cloud. The pads are incredibly soft.
There is also a minimalist design when it comes to buttons. On the right earcup there are a group of buttons dedicated to skip track and play/pause, as well as the power and Bluetooth button on the face. On the left you have the smart button which links through to Google Assistant.
Similarly to the other wireless headphones in the Bose QuietComfort 35 IIs league is the fact it now uses an app when connected to Android or iOS devices. The app is pretty plain, and offers the chance to set the sensitivity of the noise cancellation. This is particularly useful if you are taking a stroll in a busy town and want to keep an ear out for cars.
While it’s connected to your mobile device you have the chance to use Google Assistant too. Tap the smart button on the bottom of the left earcup and Google will tell you the time and if you have any notifications waiting on your mobile. If you have a text message, it will be read to you, and you can even hold the button down and speak a reply to that text message. You can even navigate through your smartphone or tell Spotify to play a song. Very useful if your phone is stored away in a bag. Saves you whipping it out every time you want do something minor on your phone.
Do take note though. For this to work on iOS, you will first need to download the Google Assistant as a separate app. It doesn’t have any kind of Siri support. This could be a dead breaker to some iOS fanboys. If you’re an Android user, it’s already preinstalled onto your device, especially with newer handsets.
What’s nice is the 20 hour battery life on wireless connections. If you’re opting for a wired connection then you will get 40 hours of battery there are there abouts in both cases. They will happily last you a couple of days worth of commuting to the office and back, and have some battery left over for some home listening.
Music performance was just short of stunning, with a lot of the time the music felt a little soft. Don’t get me wrong, audio performance was still on point, the mids and highs shone through and vocal tracks were crisp and detailed. The bass was also very punchy without overpowering any of the other instruments too. But, if we’re comparing these to something like the Bowers & Wilkins PX Wireless I took a look at a little while ago, I would have to go with the PX Wireless for detail and the ability to pick up subtle sounds.
It’s not that these headphones are bad. After all, they do offer the best noise cancelling technology we’ve had our ears on. I mean they will literally shut off the world around you, leaving you with your favourite music. The ability to set the sensitivity is cool, and the smart Google Assistant feature is a nice touch, although maybe not needed. These are still a superb buy if you are interested in having the best ANC tech, but if you’re into more detail for your music, the Sony 1000MX2 and the Bowers & Wilkins PX Wireless may be a better shout. For more information, please visit the Bose website.