We have currently reviewed 15 pairs of Bose headphones. They're a brand well-known known for their industry-leading active noise cancelling (ANC) features and comfortable designs.
The best Bose headphones for casual use we've tested so far are the Bose QuietComfort 35 II. Thanks to their lightweight design, they're one of the most comfortable pairs of headphones we've ever tested, making them a good choice to get you through your long work days. Their physical controls are easy to use, and while they don't look quite as premium as some of the competition, they still feel well-built and durable. Like most Bose headphones, their sound profile is very well-balanced, making them versatile enough for most genres and content. Their ANC (active noise cancelling) is among one of the best we've tested, and they do a great job of blocking out the low rumble of bus and plane engines. These headphones last 20 hours off a single charge, which is good, and they support multi-device pairing so you can easily switch between your laptop and phone without having to mess around with settings.
Unfortunately, like with all Bose headphones, their companion app doesn't give access to any EQ settings, so you can't change the way they sound. This may bother fans of bass-heavy genres like EDM or dubstep, as their default sound profile doesn't have as much thump and kick as some other popular options. They also tend to leak a fair amount of audio, so you may not want to blast your music if you work in a very quiet office. That being said, these are among the best headphones we've tested thanks to their incredibly comfortable design, excellent ANC, and very well-balanced sound profile.
The best Bose headphones for business and travel are the Bose 700 Headphones Wireless. These wireless over-ears feel better-built and less plasticky than most of Bose's headphones. They boast the best Bluetooth microphone performance we've seen to date, making your voice sound clearer and easier-to-understand, even in noisy environments like a busy street, than other Bluetooth headphones. They also have excellent noise cancelling, great 20-hour battery life, and a well-balanced sound.
Unfortunately, they're quite bulky, and the ear cups don't fold inward to help save space at all, even in their carrying case. While they're still very comfortable, they're also a bit heavy compared to the Bose QuietComfort 35 II/QC35 II Wireless 2018, and their touch-sensitive controls can be more challenging to use. That said, whether you have to make a last-minute call at the airport or run a remote meeting while working from home, their great phone call quality makes them a solid choice for busy professionals.
The best Bose earphones for office work are the Bose QuietControl 30. They have a lightweight neckband design that makes them a better option if you find over-ears too bulky for all-day use. They have soft, comfortable earbuds that fit securely without applying unnecessary pressure and use an effective active noise cancelling system to help block out noise. Their 11-hour battery life is on the shorter side, but should still get you through your work day with a bit to spare. There's also an auto-off timer that'll kick in if you forget to turn them off for lunch, which is helpful. They sound very well-balanced and don't leak much noise either, so you can crank up your music if you'd like without having to worry too much about bothering those around you.
Unfortunately, there have been many reports of these earphones have issues with their long-term durability, namely with the rubber sleeve along the neckband peeling off after only a couple months of use. This problem doesn't affect all units but isn't very uncommon either. That said, it's mainly an aesthetic concern and doesn't seem to affect how well the earbuds perform.
The best Bose headphones for sports we've tested so far are the Bose SoundSport Free. They're compact truly wireless earbuds that deliver a remarkably well-balanced sound profile in a semi-open design, which helps give them a more spacious, open soundstage than most earbuds. They have the same, comfortable earbud fit as the Bose QuietControl 30/QC30 Wireless but are a lot more portable thanks to their smaller footprint. They're very breathable, feel very well-built, and fit securely in your ear while running or working out.
On the downside, their controls can be rather challenging to use - their buttons are very stiff and difficult to press, which can be irritating when you're trying to a sip a track mid-workout. Their battery performance is also mediocre, lasting only around 5 hours on a charge, though their charging case helps them last a bit longer. That said, they're still the best-sounding wireless earbuds we've seen to date, making them a solid option for athletes who don't want to compromise on sound quality.
Overall, Bose makes well-rounded headphones that provide an unparalleled level of comfort. Many of their headphones also have very good noise cancelling and tend to sound quite well-balanced too. However, Bose tends to make comparatively expensive headphones that feel a little plasticky compared to other headphones in the same price range. Their over-ear lineup also tends to leak a bit at higher volumes, which might not be ideal for all environments.
Bose doesn't offer as many headphone types and variations as some other brands. However, they deliver a solid series of headphones that cover most uses.
Bose is a well-known brand, popular for their excellent noise cancelling and incredibly comfortable designs. They produce well-rounded and versatile headphones that also deliver in the sound department. However, their models tend to be comparatively more expensive and not as well-built as some other headphones in the same price range.
Check our recommendations for the best travel headphones.