How headphones have changed!
We’re sure you’ll agree with this statement. We also think you’ll agree that Bose has been instrumental in the development of many of the newly implemented headphone technologies. And you’ll most probably agree with how important the original Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones have been in leading the way with its noise-canceling properties.
Since their release in 2016, the Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones have seen plenty of new kids on the block come to challenge them. But now, to meet that challenge, Bose has introduced their successor, the Bose QuietComfort 35 II.
So, just how good are the new noise-canceling Bose headphones?
Let’s get this Bose QuietComfort 35 II Review underway and find out.
There’s nothing about the Bose QuietComfort 35 II Wireless Bluetooth Headphones that stands out as being out of the ordinary. The design is something we’ve seen a thousand times before. Although we can’t argue that they’re good-looking, sleek and well-made, the design is guaranteed not to get you noticed.
Not everyone wants to make a fashion statement or be seen to be seen. If this is you, there’s no need to worry. Just get yourself a pair of the black ones, like we’re reviewing, and we guarantee you’ll be invisible.
On the other hand, if you want to make a bit of a statement, take a look at the limited-edition Rose Gold pair. The design is still staid, but the color is far from subdued. The fact that they’ve also got a contrasting white headband and ear cups makes them heard. Metaphorically speaking, of course.
We don’t want to go all gender-specific here, but those Rose Gold headphones do look very girly. We can’t see many guys being able to pull off wearing a pair of these. The less confident guys amongst us are very probably going to stick to a black or silver pair.
Other than the introduction of the limited-edition Rose Gold color to the line, the only difference between the new Bose QuietComfort 35 II over the Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones they replaced is the assistant button. Engage the button on the left earpiece, and you can summon Amazon Alexia, Siri, or Google Assistant.
You have to choose and enable which assistant you want to use.
There’s plastic, and there’s plastic.
The Bose QuietComfort 35 II certainly headphones have plenty of plastic. However, the quality of the plastics used and the quality of their manufacture still make these headphones feel like a premium product.
The earcups are made from synthetic leather, and the headband has a microfiber lining. Again, hardly remarkable materials, but again they’re not low-quality options, and they should hold up well over the years.
These are good enough to take some punishment when out on the road and are unlikely to fall apart the first time they’re dropped to the floor. One of the common weak spots on these kinds of headphones, the hinges, looks particularly strong and well put together. They look like they’ve been built and designed with longevity in mind.
The Bose QuietComfort 35 II comes with an excellent Hardcase to protect them. Since the Bose headphones fold away into a compact space, there should be no problem in slipping these into your bag and keeping them safe.
One of the advantages of their predominantly plastic design is that it helps keep their weight down. They weigh 240gms to be precise. Now that’s light for this type of headphone.
One of the obvious advantages of being so light is that they’re comfortable to wear over extended periods. After a couple of hours, you’re not going to be walking or running around, feeling like you’ve got a brick on your head.
The headband isn’t too tight, and the earcups don’t exert too much pressure around your ears.
The Bose QuietComfort 35 II headphones feel great to wear walking around town or on your commute. What’s more, the fit is tight, and they feel light enough to be able to take to the gym or for a run in the park.
There are plenty of features with these headphones, but the thing we really like is the ability to use them either wired or wireless. In most circumstances, we’re going to use them wirelessly, but it’s oh so nice to be able to use an audio cable if the occasion demands.
Sometimes the old tried and tested methods have their advantages.
The Bose QuietComfort 35 II has some pretty cool noise-canceling option built-in. This is an area that Bose excels in. Once noise cancellation is activated, either via the Bose app or through the Activity button on the headphones, noise, traffic, and unwanted chatter simply fade away.
There are three levels of noise cancellation available. At the highest setting, the level of noise cancelation is quite staggering. Very little is going to get through. If like us, you want to be in your own world, it’s unlikely that you’ll ever have the headphones switched to anything other than the maximum setting.
However, if you don’t like noise-canceling, and there are plenty of people that don’t, even with the noise-canceling switched off, they do a pretty good job of insulating you from a lot of unwanted noise.
All of the controls, other than for Assistant, are on the right earcup.
The buttons are actually quite small and a little bit fiddly. In fact, they’re a lot fiddlier than a lot of other headphones we’ve seen. However, with a little bit of practice, they’re not too difficult to use.
On the right earpiece, on the inside of the cup, is the battery indicator. On the outside of the earpiece, there’s also a power-on indicator. Finally, there are two microphones on the right side of the headphones. These work well together to deliver your voice clearly, even in a noisy environment, either for calls or when you’re using your online assistant.
A couple of features that we would have liked to see that are missing from the Bose QuietComfort 35 II headphones include automatic pause when you take off your headphones and a dedicated mute button. Either of these features would have been nice, it’s not a deal-breaker, but there are other headphones available at this price-point that have both.
The Bose headphones can be configured for use with either Google Assistant, Siri, or Amazon’s Alexia.
Regardless, if you’re using Android or IOS, or which assistant you choose, the system works really well. The commands are easily picked up, even in built-up or noisy environments.
To operate your assistant, it’s as simple as touching the Assistant button on the left earpiece, issue your query or command, and away you go. You can use your assistant to play and control your music. It can even be linked to your other smart devices to issue your commands.
With your new robotic friend, you can find then listen to the traffic reports, local news, or events, without ever having to look at your phone again. Best of all you can get your assistant to notify you and read your messages as they’re delivered
If for some reason, though we can’t think of one, you don’t want to use this feature, the button can be reconfigured. Using the Boss App, you can choose to have the Assitant button act as the 3 level noise-canceling button.
This doesn’t make much sense to us, but there’s maybe a few of you out there that would want to do this.
Battery life is an acceptable 20 hours when they’re being used with Bluetooth. That should be more than enough in most circumstances. We know that the battery life, when wireless, isn’t as long as some of the latest Beats headphones that can go for an impressive 40 hours, but we think 20 hours is enough.
When you need to recharge them, you’ve got a USB connector included to do the job. A full charge will take you just over 2 hours. Once you are recharged the battery indicator on your headphones will turn green and change to keep you updated on your battery life.
The sound is well-balanced though not neutral. They have an emphasis on the bass. It’s punchy but doesn’t over dominate the rest of the frequencies. It can get down to the lower frequencies, but once down there, it’s not going to drown out the rest of the detail in the mids and the treble.
The mids are nicely detailed and the treble frequencies are clear and ring out without becoming harsh or shrill.
It’s a sound signature that nicely balances most listening needs. But where it really shines is when the noise-canceling comes onto play. We accept that, sure, there are better headphones that will give you more detail. However, out in the real world, a lot of the very fine nuance and major detail gets lost in normal use anyway.
Now, if you intend to do all your listening inside, in a noiseless environment, there are headphones that can beat the Bose QuietComfort 35 II for sound quality. But when your out and about, when the noise-canceling feature of the Bose is on, pretty much all the detail that you ever likely be able to hear is there for you.
In this respect, the Bose QuietComfort 35 II headphones are superb.
Bose QuietComfort 35 II Pros & Cons
- Very comfortable.
- Dedicated on-line assistant button.
- Excellent noise-canceling capability.
- They can be used either wired or wireless.
- The battery cannot be replaced.
- No mute button.
So Much Choice
Not convinced that the QuietComfort are the right choice for you? No worries, there are countless other excellent headphones available.
Just take a look at our reviews of the Best Running Headphones, the Best Waterproof Bluetooth Headphones, the Most Comfortable Headphones, the Best Wireless Bluetooth Headphones, the Best Headphones under 100 dollars, the Best Studio Headphones for Home Recording, and the Best Headphones and Earbuds for Sleeping currently available.
These are great headphones.
There are plenty of reasons we think and believe they are a great choice for the urban warrior.
The excellent level of noise suppression and noise-canceling abilities the Bose QuietComfort 35 II are able to deliver can’t be understated. An urban or noisy environment is where they absolutely excel and where for the price they’re hard to beat.
Together with their outstanding noise-canceling abilities, they’re also able to deliver high-quality and detailed sound. What’s more, they’re able to do this in a comfortable and hardwearing package utilizing all the latest headphone technologies and connectivity.
The Bose QuietComfort 35 II is a smooth piece of evolution from the original model. All the best features have been retained, and the addition of the newly integrated online assist dedicated button has been a welcomed one.
As you can probably tell… We like them!