Bose Quiet Comfort Earbuds review | Laptopandnews

Bose QuietComfort® Earbuds
(Image: © Bose)

The best is here. Using ingenious technical and audio mastery, Bose has compressed everything you adored about the Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 to produce the best wireless earbuds. At ($279) Bose QuietComfort Earbuds delivers the same quality of adjustable active noise-canceling technology with great audio quality and a simple touch interface. The QuietComfortEarbuds are truly made for those who love jogging as they offer sweat resistance.

The Bose QuietComfort Earbuds come with a huge charging case with a corresponding 6 hours battery life that is music to the ears of music lovers. The only downside is that they are rather big for a pair of earbuds. The almost silence and the rich balanced audio will make you forgot about its huge size.

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds configurations and pricing

The QuietComfort Earbuds are available light gray and Triple black colors and it’s priced at $279.99

((Image: © Bose)

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds design

Measurement in inchesOunce
Bose QuietComfort1.5 x 1 x 1.1 0.3
Galaxy Buds Live1.1 x 0.6 x 0.6 0.2
AirPods Pro0.8 x 0.8 x 0.70.2

It may be big but definitely not ugly. Like all the other Bose products, the QuietComfort Earbuds is modern and sophisticated.

The front of the buds is beautifully crafted. with a glossy white rear housing, the front comes in with two rows of vent microphones . The portion that is inserted in the year canal has a pair of IR sensors to detect when the buds are taken out of the ears.

Thanks to its IPX4 rating the buds can survive light rains and are sweat resistant.

The lid on the charging case is branded with a gray Bose logo. Access to the interior is by pressing a button positioned at the front of the case. The five battery status light below the button light up when the case opened letting you know the battery life left.The USB Type-C charging port is found at the rear port.

The bose QC package comes in with a pair of 12-inch USB Type-C cable for charging and silicone eartips

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds setup

Pairing the QuietComfort Earbuds to a mobile device is quick and straightforward. Once I opened the charging case’s lid, the buds immediately went into pair mode. From there, I went to the Bluetooth menu on my Samsung Galaxy Note 8, selected the buds and voila, I was ready to rock and roll. 

In order to use the earbuds with the Bose Music app, you have to pair the earphones a second time. Only this time, you’ll have to hold down the pairing button in the case for several seconds to initiate the process. From there, it takes about 10 seconds for the app to recognize your earbuds, but when it does you’ll gain access to all of the app features. 

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds controls

With a surface that large, it’s no surprise the Bose earbuds have integrated touch panels. What was surprising is the fact that it’s a tap-based system — not a swipe to be seen. Most of the controls are located in the right earbud. So a double-tap on the right earbud will play/pause whatever you’re listening to or to answer/end a call. To decline a call, you press and hold the right bud. That functionality is also how you activate your device’s digital assistant.

If you want to skip a track, you touch and hold the left earbud. However, you can also switch it so you can hear the battery level instead. You just have to switch the functionality in the app. The left bud is also where you adjust your noise cancellation levels. A double tap allows you to cycle through your Favorites settings, which are by default set to 10, 5 and 0. This can be adjusted in the app.

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds app

Just like the Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700, the QuietComfort Earbuds use the free Bose Music app (Android, iOS) as its companion app. When the app is connected to the earbuds, you can check out the battery status, adjust the noise cancellation level, change the earbuds’ name and check out a tutorial, among other things. You can also control whatever you’re listening to and set how much of your own voice you can hear on a phone call. 

The app has a clean design and an easy-to-navigate interface. I just wish that Bose had the foresight to add a Find My Earbuds feature like the AirPods Pro and Galaxy Buds Live, and an equalizer is another nice to have.

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds noise cancelling

I don’t know how they did it, but they did it. When Bose said the QuietComfort Earbuds would have the same quality active noise cancelling you get with the 700 headphones, I chuckled. To date, it’s just been a brass ring, but Bose has seemingly made the impossible possible and with half the microphones.

Where the 700 has eight integrated microphones, the QuietComfort Earbuds have only three microphones in each earbud. One mic is dedicated to cancelling out noise while another focuses on picking up your voice during calls or summoning the digital assistant. The third microphone pulls double duty and switches between the two as necessary. In practice, the earbuds are almost as good as their over-ear counterparts. They put an immediate damper on the hustle and bustle of my Brooklyn, NY neighborhood.

(Image credit: Laptop Mag)

With no music playing, I could barely make out what song the car cruising down the street was playing and what was probably meant to be an angry car honk instead sounded like a gentle bleating. It even managed to nearly drown out my boyfriend’s loud phone conversation. When I tested the earbuds inside, they silenced my LG TV with the volume set to 15, which is slightly below what the 700 headphones were able to block out, at 17. 

Best of all, the buds did it without any harsh white noise that typically comes from the microphones pumping negative noise to cancel out ambient distractions. 

Similar to most truly wireless earbuds on the market, the Bose also features a transparency mode. You can activate by double tapping the left earbud or by removing one of the earbuds. It really comes in handy when you want to be aware of your surroundings and still listen to music. For instance, I jumped on a work call and proceeded to bop my head to Digital Underground’s “Doowutchyalike” at approximately 40% volume while discussing article edits. 

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds audio quality

Surely you weren’t expecting a Bose audio product to have bad audio quality. If that’s the case, prepare to be disappointed. The QuietComfort Earbuds use Bose’s proprietary drivers and the company’s Active EQ, which electronically tunes the frequency curve to come as close to the 700’s curve as possible. The result is warm, relatively balanced audio with rich bass and a generous soundscape. 

At least that’s what I heard when I listened to the Master version of Ari Lennox’s “Chocolate Pomegranate” on Tidal. The pleasantly distorted sound of the Electric Wind Instrument was punctuated by crisp cymbals and deep bass. Lennox’s vocal was sultry and lush, like acoustic velvet. I heard a similar performance on the AirPods Pro, except towards the end of the song when the track is submerged, giving way to a trumpet. I found that details were a little fuzzier on the AirPods than on the QuietComfort Earbuds.

For my next track, I went with the Mastered version of Black Thought’s “Good Morning” and was immediately awash in dank bass and gritty horns. Black Thought and the rest of the guest rappers on the track came through loud and clear, serving up serious bars. The horns and bass on the AirPods Pro was more diffused and almost had a monotone quality against the siren in the background. The vocals from the featured artists were fine, but those instrumentals were a bit of a distraction. 

I wrapped up my testing session with “Children’s Song No. 10 (Live in Paris/2018)” by Chick Corea. The piano was playful and lively on the Bose and was so clear I could just make out the hammers hitting the strings and the ever-so-slight reverb. And while the AirPods Pro came close to matching their rivals, some of those finer details I heard on the Bose were lacking.

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds battery life and Bluetooth

Bose has given the QuietComfort Earbuds an estimated battery life of 6 hours with Noise Cancellation turned up to the max. I wore the QuietComfort Earbuds while working, jumping on video calls, watching a few movie trailers and, of course, listening to music. I got the low battery indicator after about 5 hours and 49 minutes.

(Image credit: Laptop Mag)

After popping the earbuds into their case for 15 minutes, the quick charge took the buds from 5% to 40%, which is roughly 2 hours worth of battery. The case can deliver 2 additional charges of 6 hours each, bringing the total battery life up to 18 hours. That’s shorter than the AirPods Pro’s 24 hours, but the QuietComfort Earbuds lasts longer out of the case (6 hours vs. 5 hours). 

The QuietComfort Earbuds use Bluetooth 5.1, which has an approximate range of 30 feet, allowing me to leave my phone in the living room when I went to the backyard to check on the grill. There was a little sputter in the connection, but it quickly straightened itself out. I could also go downstairs into my office and still listen to music. The connection only cut out once I actually left my apartment building. 

If you’ve connected the buds to a variety of devices, you can switch between them using the app.

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds call quality

Thanks to those magical microphones, the QuietComfort Earbuds delivers crisp, clean audio quality when on a call. During testing, I sat on three work video calls. My colleagues’ voices came through loud and clear as if I was using my MacBook Pro’s speakers. Some of my coworkers couldn’t tell that I was talking to them through a pair of earbuds, while others could tell immediately and said the experience was better than okay. 

I also made some calls as I ran some errands. My mom couldn’t tell that I was on a pair of headphones or even outside until a train passed overhead. And since the earbuds do such a great job of blocking out ambient noise, I never had to strain to hear her voice over the usual New York City din.

Bottom line

Bose thought small and it paid off big. The company managed to gather all of the winning qualities of its flagship headphones, shrink them down and put them in a pair of truly wireless earbuds. All of this without sacrificing the audio quality and gold-standard active noise cancelling we’ve come to expect from the brand. 

That stated, the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds are a truly wireless revelation. For $279, you get a pair of earbuds that are ounce for ounce as good as its headphone version. The noise cancelling is as excellent as the audio quality, and the touch controls are easy to learn. They are huge for wireless earbuds, rivalling the Microsoft Surface Earbuds, and the battery life could be better (particularly the charging case). But for those searching for Bose-quality sound and ANC in a tiny package, you can’t beat the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds.


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