- Has the best active noise-cancellation technology on the market
- Very comfortable
- Excellent built quality, very durable
- Excellent battery time
- Very good Bluetooth wireless range
- Cable has no inline remote control
- Sound quality not as good as the wired Bose QuietComfort 25 headphones
Bose has clearly responded to consumers and also the competition. Simply, the market is willing to pay a little extra for wireless headphones and we are seeing it for the first time on their QuietComfort series. The new Bose QuietComfort 35 (QC35) has a retail price of $349 and can be purchased right now at various retailers. The previous Bose QuietComfort 25 (QC25), which are wired headphones, has a retail price (MSRP) of $299, which is just $50 less. We expect the price of the Bose QuietComfort 25 to go down a bit the following months since the new and improved Bose QuietComfort 35 has now been released.
For your consideration, the QC35 can be found in silver and black. Despite looking nearly identical to the QC25, there are some subtle differences. Looking at the headband, the very top features a soft and synthetic leather versus fabric on the QC25. Alcantara, which can be found on luxury automobiles like Audi, Tesla, Lamborghini, etc. provides a very soft cushion on your head. More on the comfort test a little bit later.
Moving down from the top, the stainless steel retractable arms are used and the clicking mechanism stays firm enough without accidental adjustments while wearing. We also performed stress tests and we found the Bose QuietComfort 35 to be extremely durable. The band retained its shape without any squeaking of materials whatsoever. All in all, some very high quality and durable headphones that Bose has produced.
The earcups are closed back over-ear headphones with the controls on the right side that offer pause, play and to adjust volume. Two lights indicate Bluetooth connectivity and power levels. Furthermore, a microUSB port is also found, which is used for charging the QC35.
In regards to battery life, Bose is claiming up to 20 hours wireless and up to 40 hours wired. These claimed numbers are impressive and on par with other high-end headphones. Of course, we put these claims up for a test, and we can confirm that these claims hold water. Our tests showed a battery life of 22 hours and 30 minutes using wireless connectivity. The re-charging from a dead battery to a full one took about 2 hours and 15 minutes. Also, whenever you turn on the Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones, it prompts you and tells you how many percentages of battery remaining, much like other Bose products.
Furthermore, the QC35 has NFC (near-field communication). Just tap your NFC-enabled device and they will connect automatically, which is a very convenient feature. Lastly, like all other active noise-canceling headphones, there’s an external microphone that helps with adjusting the noise-cancelling performance and enables your headphones to work just like a headset for phone calls. During our testing, the audio was perfectly clear and our voices came up very close to what they actually sound like talking into the phone.
Right before going into the audio testing and to finish the physical aspects of these headphones, we would like to describe the comfort of wearing these headphones first. Both the QC25 and the new Bose QC35 does not use plastic, but instead glass-filled nylon to retain its lightweight build while keeping rigidity. The QC25 weighs just only 208 grams and the QC weighs only 235, making them extremely light compared to the competition.
Wearing the Bose QuietComfort 35 does not give any wearing fatigue at the crown of the head and the clamping force at the jawline is very subtle with no discomfort at all wearing these. These headphones are very ideal for those on the airplane due to the whole comfort aspect.
What’s Included in the Box
- Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones
- 3.5mm audio cable for a physical connection
- Airplane adapter
- USB charging cable
- Carrying case
We feel like the 3.5mm audio cable are a bit thin and they also have no locking mechanism to fully secure them to the headphones. Some users however, find this to be a good thing as they prevent the headphones from flying off your head if the wire was pulled.
You also receive an airplane adapter, because some seats in airplanes do not have a 3.5mm jack, and this adapter solves that. The case itself also provide adequate protection when traveling.
This is probably the part that most of you out there have been waiting for. Getting into the active noise-cancelling performance, we have tested the Parrot Zik, the Sennheiser Momentum wireless headphones and some more with ANC (Active Noice-Canceling). Some of the more recent headphones are admittedly close, such as the Parrot Zik headphones, but Bose still offers the best in terms of canceling out unwanted noises.
Just like the QC25, the new QC35 works equally the same for our tests here. We’ve tested the Bose QuietComfort 35 in the metro, in the airplane, in the cafe around many other people, and we must admit that they do a fantastic job. It’s a great feeling and once you have your music on, you’re almost completely isolated from the outside world and in your own world instead. You still hear some nearby voices, just like other ANC headphones do, but they’re mostly just cars passing by, the wind, construction going on in the city, etc. They are, however, reduced significantly, so if you are looking for the best active noise-canceling headphones, the Bose QuietComfort 35 and the QC25 as well for that matter, are the best ones out there.
The Bose QuietComfort 35 do get loud enough for the average consumer and the sound isn’t identical to the QC25, but it’s very close. The differences are very small and you most likely only tell if you have both the wired and wireless models in front of you.
Now regardless if you had the QC35 either connected with the cord or using the wireless function, the QC25 sounded more well-rounded. It was louder, the bass hitted a little bit harder and the mids were a bit more forward. In the end, the QC25, which is the wired version, sounded slightly better than the new and wireless QC35. This is regardless if we used the 3.5mm cable or not with the QC35.
Now you may wonder if Bluetooth compression has an impact on audio performance and the answer to that question is no. Using the Bluetooth feature, we had identical results versus using the wired connection. As a matter of fact, the Bluetooth feature offered a higher volume than the wired connection.
Comparing the Bose QuietComfort 35 to the Sennheiser Momentum wireless headphones, which are bass boosted, while the Bose provides adequate bass. We find the bass on the QuietComfort 35 a bit more accurate and refined than the Sennheiser Momentum, although we absolutely love them both very much. The bass signature of the Bose is very clear and clean, and even more so at higher volumes.
The mid-range of the Bose is a pleasure to listen to. They are forward but not too bright with details of instruments and voices coming through the Bose QC35, just like the Bose QC25, gives a natural listening experience that isn’t dull at all. We listened for several hours and we also didn’t experience any listening fatigue. They’re great to wear, sound great and look great as well. If you’re on a long flight, these headphones will do the job just perfectly.
Regarding wireless range, the signal can go through several walls and Bose has their own app for both iOS and Android that you can download to see battery levels, volume control and you can also see the Bluetooth connection for all your devices.
Overall for the Bose QuietComfort 35, there's a lot of things going for it, but yet it doesn't have all the features that you see on the Sony headphones or JBL, but the battery life is insane and the comfort is among the best.
The noise-cancellation is also the best on the market and the sound quality is superb as well.