The QuietComfort 35 deliver the excellent noise canceling of the QuietComfort 25 in a wireless design. They're incredibly comfortable headphones, with an above-average sound. They leak a bit less than the QC25 but sadly, they will still be distracting to the people around you at moderate volumes.
- Outstanding noise isolation.
- Wireless and comfortable design.
- Above-average sound quality.
- Moderate sound leakage.
The QuietComfort 35 are well-crafted headphones. They're amazingly comfortable, even during long listening sessions. They're slightly better built than the QuietComfort 25, and their wireless design makes them less likely to fall off your head. They have an efficient control scheme and come with a sturdy case. Unfortunately, they're not tight enough to be comfortably used at the gym, and their overall design feels a bit bland. However, Bose recently released the new custom QuietComort 35, which allows your to personalize the QC 35 to suit your tastes.
The QuietComfort 35 are a mix between the Soundlink Around-Ear II and the QuietComfort 25. They share the same wireless aesthetic and button placement of the SoundLink AE but have the premium materials of the QC25. The all-black model reviewed has a high-end yet understated appeal. However, Bose has also recently released, color customizable variations. Hence for an additional fee, you can fully alter the color schemes to suit your tastes and preferences, giving the headphones a bit more flare and personality.
The QuietComfort 35 deliver a comfortable listening experience that is hard to match. They're not too tight, and the materials used for the ear cup padding is soft and molds well around your ears. However, they're a little heavier than the QuietComfort 25 due to the wireless technology and rechargeable battery, but it doesn't lessen their comfort level by much and will be barely noticeable once on your head.
The QC 35 have a good control scheme. The buttons deliver great tactile feedback, and the functionalities include; Call/music, track-skipping, and volume controls. However, the controls feel a little cramped on the bottom of the right ear cup, but you get used to it quickly.
The QC35 like the QC25, are stable during a casual listening session. However, they're not too tight, which makes them more comfortable but also a little less stable if used during sports. The ear cups of the QC 35, in particular, are slightly heavier and will sway a bit more than the QC 25. Fortunately, thanks to the wireless design, you don't have to worry about the audio cable getting caught on something and yanking the headphones off your head, which gives them a slight edge in stability over the wired model.
The QuietComfort 35 are mid-sized Over-ear headphones. They're a little larger than the QuietComfort 25 but are still decently portable. They fold into a compact format, and the earcups also lay flat to take less space. Unfortunately, They're a bit too big, to carry around on your person and will not comfortably fit into any pockets or smaller handbags.
Comes with a sturdy, hard case that will protect the headphones from scratches, falls, and mild water damage. It also doesn't add much bulk and easily stores all the provided headphone accessories in a dedicated pocket within the case, unlike the QuietComfort 25.
The QuietComfort 35 are slightly better built than the similarly designed QuietComfort 25. They have a little wider headband and a more premium leather material coating. The plastic used for the ear cups is thick and should be able to handle a few drops without getting damaged. However, they have a lot of plastic in their build, which is somewhat durable but not as robust as other higher-end headphones that use dense metals for their joints and frame.
The QuietComfort 35 deliver an above-average audio reproduction with low harmonic distortion. They pack a punch in the bass range, which will please fans of bass. They also represent instruments and vocals fairly well, if a little pushed back, in the mix. However, they struggle with the high frequencies, like the QC 25, and have a closed-back design that limits the spaciousness of their soundstage.
Very good Bass Range performance. Low-bass is extended down to 10Hz which is excellent. Also, the rest of the response is virtually flat. However, low-bass and bass are overemphasized by about 2dB, which makes these headphones very slightly bass heavy.
Excellent, unremarkable Mid Range performance. The response is virtually flat, except for the 5db dip in high-mid, which slightly pushes the vocals/lead instruments to the back of the mix.
Average Treble Range performance. The overall response is rather inconsistent. The 10dB notch around 10KHz could negatively affect the sibilant frequecies. However, because of the narrow bandwidth the effect would be quite subtle.
Poor soundstage. Due to the excellent active-noise cancelling of these headphones, the Openness score is quite low, as these headphones sound very closed and don't interact with their environment acoustically. Also, although the drivers of these headphones seem to be angled, they don't activate the resonances of the outer ear the way speakers do. Therefore, the soundstage may be perceived to be located inside the head, as opposed to in front.
Decent imaging. The phase response and phase matching of these headphones aren't as good as the QuietComfort 25, which could possibly be due to their wireless design. However, the overall amplitude and frequency response of our test unit were quite well-matched.
Very good distortion restuls. At 90dB SPL these headphones perform well, and they even perform slightly better than the QuietComfort 25 in the Treble Range. At 100dB SPL, there is a general rise in the overall amount of harmonic distortion, but it remains within good values.
The QuietComfort 35 excel at reducing ambient noise in loud environments. Their active noise cancelling is incredibly efficient, and the ear cups create a good seal around the ears for some additional passive isolation. They deliver an isolated listening experience, even on a busy commute or noisy flight. Sadly, they leak quite a bit and would be distracting to the people around you at moderate volumes.
One of our best-performing Over-Ear headphones. These headphones provide relatively linear isolation, from 80Hz down to 1KHz. They achieve more than 15dB of isolation in the Bass Range, more than 22dB in the Mid Range, and more than 35dB in the Treble Range, all being above average values. With ANC Off however, the low-end isolation goes away for the most part, but the performance from 1KHz and up will remain virtually the same.
Although these headphones perform slightly better than the QuietComfort 25 in the leakage test, they still leak a good amount. The majority of the leakage is between 300Hz and 3KHz, which is relatively a broad spectrum. The overall level of the leakage is high too.
The QuietComfort 35 have an above-average wireless range. They maintained a stable connection just shy of 40 ft, which makes them a decent option for moderately sized offices. Like the other wireless Bose models, they have an easy to pair power switch that can be quickly toggled to put the headphones in pairing mode. They also support NFC. However, since these headphones use the latest Bluetooth Smart technology, you may have to download the Bose app to get these headphones to pair with devices that have an older Bluetooth version. Luckily, it isn't much of a hassle once the connection has been established, as it will remember the last synced device and connect immediately upon power on.
The QC35 have a good battery life, but you still have to charge them relatively often. They're suitable headphones for long flights or road trips, and they have an adjustable timer that helps prolong the battery life. Unfortunately, you can't use them while they're charging although they do not take too long to fully charge.
The Bose Connect app is sleek but only offers a minimal list of features. It allows you to connect, rename, and update the QC 35 but doesn't provide you with an equalizer or any control over the noise canceling. On the upside, the app provides an auto-off timer, you can set at different intervals. A limited in-app player and the battery level status but that's pretty much it, which is disappointing.
In the box
- Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones
- Audio cable
- Airline adapter
- Carrying case
- USB charging cable
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Questions & Answers
We can't tell exactly what kind of distortion you were hearing without being able to reproduce it ourselves. But we didn't notice a significant difference in the harmonic distortion of the Bass region, between the Wired and Bluetooth responses. However, we noticed that the right ear cup of our test unit would produce measurably more harmonic distortion than the left ear cup, at higher volumes and when connected via Bluetooth. But this is exclusively happening above 100Hz and probably not what you were noticing.
We also didn't notice any noise-cancelling artifacts with the QC35. One way to test that for yourself would be to put the headphones on your head, stomp your feet on the ground and/or tap lightly on the back side of the ear cups. If you notice a low-bass rumble (below 60Hz), that could be an artifact of the noise-cancelling system.
One important thing to point out is that the QC35 (and most other noise-cancelling headphones), use active EQ to fine-tune their sound. That is why the tonal quality of these headphones changes when you turn them on and use them wirelessly. As you can see in the graph below, with QC35 this is quite noticeable in the Bass Range. So our best guess is that what you are noticing is the overall increase in Bass, which in turn, could add excessive low-bass rumble to the sound during the bass-heavy part of the movie.
At the moment we measure headphones at 90dB & 100dB SPL (C-weighting, 20Hz-20Khz pink noise, post compensation curve). However, this may change slightly in the near future.
Not sure how Bose calibrates their headphones, but if the volume-optimized EQ is based on the Equal Loudness Contour, then theirs should be pretty close to ours. Also, the EQ's gain should more or less be reducing as the volume increases.
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