We had to wait, but Bose is finally back with a new pair of headphones. premium, the QuietComfort headset with noise cancellation. But is it worth investing so much money in QC45s?
The headphones are priced at $ 349, and while they keep that iconic design now in much lighter headphones, with solid ANC and sound quality, Bose decided to use some pretty straightforward technology, so it’s easy. for you to get better value from it. somewhere else.
Design and build
The QuietComfort design has been an icon in the headphone world for years, so it’s understandable that Bose wants to keep that instantly recognizable look with the QC45.
Not much has changed, something I think Bose fans will like, but maybe it will confuse others who are used to the fact that the tech world always wants to improve and change. Either way, you’ll have to decide whether or not you like this style over its rivals.
I like the QC45 in this regard even though the design looks a bit dated. There are minor improvements as the headband is now impact resistant glass filled nylon combined with durable custom cast metal. Overall, they look more elegant and refined than the QC35 II.
Above all, they live up to their name and are easily one of the nicest headphones you’ve ever tried. The faux leather ear cushions feel softer and more padded, with just enough pressure to stay in place without getting in the way.
If you are looking for material premium and an eye-catching finish you’ll have to look elsewhere, but the use of plastic parts makes the QC45s extremely light, weighing just 240g (the previous model weighed 310g). If you want headphones for long sessions, you won’t find anything more comfortable.
Like previous models, the QuietComfort 45 folds up easily and comes with a rectangular storage pouch, which also has a small pocket for cables. What I don’t like is that wearing them around the neck when not in use causes the helmet to unfold, much more uncomfortable than if it were done the other way around.
There are no touch controls, but I think it’s a smart move on Bose’s part, as they’re often complex and unreliable. Buttons on both headphones allow you to easily turn them on and off, control playback, and use the different ANC modes seamlessly.
Sound quality and ANC
Bose doesn’t like to share certain specifications like driver size or even the frequency range of QC45s. Whatever is inside the headset, the truth is, the sound is pretty good.
As for the specs we are familiar with, the headphones have Bluetooth 5.1 and the AAC codec. Like the Sony WH-1000XM4, they don’t offer aptX or aptX HD support, too bad if you have devices that do.
What Bose offers is its TriPort acoustic architecture, which includes conductors in the headphones without enlarging them. It’s hard to say how much the quality varies, but the QuietComfort 45s sound great, with well-balanced sound and excellent immersion.
You’ll find more precise and dynamic sound quality on other models, but I’m a bit picky. For most potential buyers, the QC45 delivers brilliant sound. It’s a shame that you can’t control the sound through the app.
Instead, Bose uses an active EQ to make adjustments for you (mostly balancing everything, regardless of the volume level).
It’s hard to know how well the QC Earbuds feature is doing, as it can’t be turned off for comparison. What I can say is that the bass is present even at low volumes and the experience is overall quite pleasant.
When it comes to noise cancellation, Bose has been offering some of the best on the market for years. That hasn’t changed in terms of performance: the QC45s can take out everything around you without any issues.
The addition of the new Aware mode is not surprising, allowing you to hear your surroundings without removing the headphones. That doesn’t make it all that dangerous to go for a run and they’ll make sure you don’t miss the public announcement letting you know you can get on, to give two examples. It’s pretty standard on ANC headphones and it works well.
However, there are several things about the QC45 that honestly confuse me. The mentioned noise cancellation (which they call “silent mode”) and conscious mode are the only two options. You cannot turn off ANC or adjust the level in either mode.
What makes this really weird is that you can do this on the flagship Bose QuietComfort Earbuds and Bose Noise Canceling Headphones 700, so it’s a mystery why they haven’t put it here as well.
If you care about smart features, the QC45s fall short and don’t even offer ear detection to automatically pause or resume music when you take it off or on. Again, this is something the Bose QuietComfort headphones offer.
Si los compramos con los Sony WH-1000XM4, estos ofrecen esta función además de mucha otra tecnología inteligente, como la capacidad de cambiar de modo de forma automática dependiendo de dónde estás o qué estás haciendo (en casa, en tu cafetería, preferendoida and further).
One thing they do offer is SimpleSync. This means that if you have a compatible Bose soundbar or speaker (which I didn’t have to test) you can connect the QC45s wirelessly to listen to it yourself. This can be handy, for example, if you want to watch TV at night without disturbing.
At the most basic level, you can connect two devices simultaneously and the audio will automatically change depending on what you’re doing. To avoid confusion, the headphones make noise when you change them and let you know which device you’re connected to, even if the voice sounds a bit strange at times.
Another information you can get using this method is the battery level, but if you prefer, you can turn off all of these notifications from the app.
Bose has added a sixth microphone to the QuietComfort 35 and offers high quality for calls. Using all microphones and an algorithm capable of rejecting noise, the headset eliminates white noise when speaking. It works great, making it a great option if you’re going to be making a lot of calls away from home.
You can also adjust the level of your voice during a call (high, medium, low or off), mainly to avoid ending up screaming due to the passive noise isolation that occurs when using the phone. a helmet on the ear.
As for the battery, Bose claims you’ll be able to use them for up to 24 hours with the noise canceling turned on. In my testing, I didn’t manage to get that many hours of use, even in a fairly quiet office. It’s a bit difficult to know how much battery is left, since it goes from 10% to 10%. You may think you have 60% left and, 30 seconds later, see that it is at 50%.
On average, I’ve seen the QuietComfort 45 use up 10% battery after two hours of use, which allows it to last around 20 hours. Obviously, there are certain factors that will affect your headset battery depending on what you’re doing and where, but performance is solid.
One thing that I love and that Bose has retained is the ability to use wired headphones. There is a 3.5mm port on the left earbud and a cable is also included in the box. You won’t be able to use features like ANC or Active EQ, but at the very least, they won’t be useless if you run out of battery.
Charging is now done via USB-C and Bose offers three hours of playback on a 15-minute charge.
The Bose QuietComfort 45 are priced at $ 349 and they are available in two colors: Black and Smoked White, the same as the previous model.
They cannot be purchased directly from Bose, but they can be purchased at electronics stores such as Fnac, El Corte Inglés, MediaMarkt, or Amazon.
They are much cheaper than Apple’s AirPods Max ($ 629), while the Sony WH-1000XM4 have a suggested price of $ 380. However, since they have been on the market longer, you can find them cheaper.
There are other models under $ 300 to consider, such as the Marshall Monitor II ANC. So if you’re not a loyal Bose user, you have more options.
Take a look at our pick of the best headphones and earphones with better noise cancellation.
If you want headphones on the ear Lightweight and extremely comfortable, offering decent noise cancellation and sound quality, the Bose QC45 is definitely a good choice.
Bose made some weird decisions though, and I mean mostly not being able to control the ANC (beyond being able to switch between two very basic modes) and not having smart features like ear detection.
It’s a bit confusing after waiting five years and considering that other headphones premium from Bose offer these features.
Maybe these decisions will work for you, but that’s a bit rare for a flagship headset. These absences make them seem rather mid-range. If you want more control and more modern features, you’ll have to look elsewhere, even within the Bose catalog.
The Sony WH-1000XM4 are the more obvious alternative and are a very attractive option considering that you can already find them for a lower price than the QC45. They are only slightly heavier and you won’t have to use their settings if you don’t want to.
Original article published on Tech Advisor.