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Reviewed on Feb 27, 2018 , Marc Henney, Jean-Christophe Lamontagne

Bose QuietComfort 35
HEADPHONES REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 1.2

Test Benches: test

  • 1.2: Winter 2018
  • 1.1: Summer 2017
  • 1.0: Winter 2017
  • 0.9: Winter 2016
7.4
Mixed Usage
What it is This is the combination of the different use cases to evaluate how versatile the headphones are. Therefore an everyday headphone should be well-rounded enough to adapt to most situations and environments without significant losses in sound quality, design ergonomics or isolation.
Score components:
7.7
Critical Listening
What it is The level of audio fidelity a headphone can reproduce. Therefore a balanced and true representation of bass, mids, treble, soundstage and imaging, as well as a comfortable listening experience, is essential for critical listening.
Score components:
7.7
Commute/Travel
What it is How well the headphones handle the loud environments involved in commuting or traveling. Therefore your listening experience should be comfortable, hassle-free and as isolated from noise as possible.
Score components:
7.1
Sports/Fitness
What it is How well-adapted the headphones are, to use while doing sports or strenuous exercise. Therefore the headphones should not be too cumbersome and deliver a stable and comfortable listening experience.
Score components:
7.7
Office
What it is How well the headphones can deliver a comfortable and isolated listening experience in an office-like environment. They should not leak much and should block the noise of a busy office.
Score components:
6.1
Home Theater
Score components:
5.8
Gaming
Score components:
These headphones were replaced by the Bose QuietComfort 35 II

Type : Over-ear
Enclosure : Closed-Back
Wireless : Yes
Noise-Cancelling : Yes
Mic : Yes
Transducer : Dynamic

The Bose QuietComfort 35 are good headphones for commuters thanks to their excellent noise isolation. They're incredibly comfortable so you can wear them for hours, they have an above-average sound quality and a simple design that's suitable for most use cases. They leak a bit less than the QC25 but unfortunately, they may still be distracting to the people around you at moderate volumes. They're also not the most stable or breathable headphones for sports.

Pros
  • Outstanding noise isolation.
  • Wireless and comfortable design.
  • Good sound quality.
Cons
  • Moderate sound leakage.

Test Results
Design 7.4
Sound 7.7
Isolation 7.9
Microphone 6.1
Active Features 8.1
Connectivity 5.6
Update 2/16/2018: Converted to Test Bench 1.2.
Update 9/28/2017: The microphone has been tested with our new methodology, as explained here
Update 8/10/2017: Converted to Test Bench 1.1. Learn more about our new versioned test bench system here.

Check Price

7.4

Design

Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Design Picture

The Bose 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 carrying case. Unfortunately, they're not tight enough to be comfortably used at the gym, and their overall design feels a bit bland. However, Bose released a custom version of the Bose QC35, which lets you personalize the color schemes when ordering to better suit your taste and preferences.

Style
Bose QuietComfort 35 Design Picture 2

These headphones 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.

8.5 Comfort
What it is: Adjustability and degrees of freedom, pressure, stiffness and weight.
When it matters: When the headphones are going to be used for long durations.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Bose QuietComfort 35 Comfort Picture
Weight : 0.52 lbs
Clamping Force
What it is: The force that the headphones exert on your head, once you have them on. This is purely a measurement of the force applied, which does not take into account the earpad's surface area and the resulting pressure you will feel, on or around your ears.
When it matters: The tighter the headphones, the more force they put on your head. This can get uncomfortable or cause pain and soreness during long listening sessions.
:
0.69 lbs

The Bose 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.

6.4 Controls
What it is: The control scheme of the headphones, the number of functions provided, button layout and ergonomics as well as the quality of tactile feedback.
When it matters: If you want to control volume, pause your music or make phone calls without directly interacting with your audio device.
Bose QuietComfort 35 Controls Picture
Ease of use : Good
Feedback : Good
Call/Music Control : Yes
Volume Control : Yes
Microphone Control : No
Channel Mixing
What it is: Being able to mix audio channels directly on the headphones.
When it matters: This is most useful when using a separate chat software so that you can mix in-game audio and chat audio depending on your needs.
:
N/A
Noise Canceling Control : No
Talk-Through : No
Additional Buttons : No

The Bose QC35 have a decent 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, and do not provide a noise canceling switch to just turn off the ANC or switch between ambient modes.

6.2 Breathability
What it is: How hot the headphones get when you wear them for an extended period of time.
When it matters: If you often have long listening sessions or use your headphones while doing physical activities like running or working out.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Breathability After Picture
Avg.Temp.Difference : 6.3 C

The Bose QuietComfort 35 do not have the most breathable design. They are over-ears that create a good seal around your ears which prevents a lot of airflow. This means they will make you sweat a bit more than average during physical exercise and will not be suitable for more intense work out routines. On the upside, they should be fine for more casual listening sessions only making your ears warm after hours of use.

6.1 Portability
What it is: The volume of space occupied by the headphones when folded into their most compact format.
When it matters: If you're often on the move and need to carry your headphones in a bag, purse , or pocket.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Portability Picture
L : 5.12 "
W : 5.71 "
H : 3.15 "
Volume : 92 Cu. Inches
Stand required : N/A

The Bose 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.

8.0 Case
What it is: The provided carrying options to protect your headphones when transporting them.
When it matters: To prevent damaging your headphones, if you often carry them in your bag or pocket.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Bose QuietComfort 35 Case Picture
Type : Hard case
L : 8.27 "
W : 5.91 "
H : 2.17 "
Volume : 105.7 Cu. Inches

The Bose QuietComfort 35 come 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 QC25.

7.5 Build Quality
What it is: Durability, material quality, cheap/expensive feel.
When it matters: When the headphones are going to be used by multiple users (classes/studios), by children, in tough conditions, on a daily basis, or for exercise.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Bose QuietComfort 35 Build Quality Picture

The Bose 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.

7.0 Stability
What it is: How the headphones are designed to prevent them from slipping off your ears or falling off your head.
When it matters: If you plan on using the headphones while doing sports or other physical activities that requires a lot of movement.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Bose QuietComfort 35 Stability Picture

The Bose 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, 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.

Cable
Bose QuietComfort 35 Cable Picture
Detachable : Yes
Length : 3.84 ft
Connection : 1/8" TRS

They come with one 1/8"TRRS-1/16" TRRS audio cable with no in-line remote micro USB charging cable.

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Headshots 1
Headshots 2
7.7

Sound

What it is: How accurately the audio is reproduced. The tests are performed with the headphones' most commonly used features enabled (noise-cancelling, wireless, etc.)
Bose QuietComfort 35 Frequency Response

The Bose QuietComfort 35 Wireless are a good sounding pair of closed-back over-ear headphones. They have an excellent, consistent, and well-balanced bass, with adequate punch and thump. They also have a very good mid-range and a very good treble. This makes them very versatile and suitable for a variety of genres from EDM to jazz and classical. However, they may sound a bit forward on vocals for some, and their treble is a bit uneven. Also, like most other closed-back headphones, they don't have an open and out-of-head soundstage.

9.2 Bass
What it is: Frequency Response from 20Hz-250Hz
When it matters: When the material is heavy on bass frequencies, such as those of kick drums and bass guitar.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Bass
Std. Err.
What it is: The amount of deviation (weighted standard error) in bass frequency response (20Hz-250Hz) as compared to a target response that would sound perfectly balanced to most people.
When it matters: When a balanced and neutral (reference) bass performance is desired.
Good value: <4dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
1.15 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
What it is: The lowest frequency at which the frequency response reaches -3dB of the target response.
When it matters: Shows how extended the bass is.
Good value: <40Hz
Noticeable difference: 5Hz
:
10 Hz
Low-Bass
What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 20Hz-60Hz.
When it matters: Kick drums and low frequency effects get their 'thump' from this range. Mostly felt than heard.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
1.81 dB
Mid-Bass
What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 60Hz-120Hz.
When it matters: Melodic bass instruments have most of their fundamental frequencies in this range. This is where the 'body' and 'punch' of the bass sits.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
0.97 dB
High-Bass
What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 120Hz-250Hz.
When it matters: Most instruments get their warmth and full-ness from this range. When over-emphasized, mixes tend to get muddy and boomy.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
0.81 dB

The Bose QuietComfort 35 have an excellent bass. Their low-frequency extension (LFE) is at 10Hz, which is great. Also, low-bass is within 2dB of our target response. This means that these headphones are capable of producing low thumping and rumbling sounds, which is important for bass-heavy genres like EDM. Mid-bass, which is important for the punch of bass and kick instruments, is also flat and within 1dB of our target. Overall, their bass is deep, well-balanced, and punchy.

8.4 Mid
What it is: Frequency Response from 250Hz-2KHz
When it matters: When the material is heavy on mid-range frequencies. This is the case for the majority of audio content.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Mid
Std. Err.
What it is: The amount of deviation (weighted standard error) in mid frequency response (250Hz-2.5KHz) as compared to a target response that would sound perfectly balanced to most people.
When it matters: When a balanced and neutral (reference) mid performance is desired.
Good value: <4dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
2.19 dB
Low-Mid
What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 250Hz-500Hz.
When it matters: Most instruments have their fundamentals or low harmonics in this range. Over-emphasis in this range sounds muddy and cluttered. Under-emphasis, thins out the vocals and lead instruments.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
-0.02 dB
Mid-Mid
What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 500Hz-1KHz.
When it matters: This range is occupied mostly by upper harmonics. Over-emphasis sounds forward and boxy. Under-emphasis pushes instruments to the back of the mix.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
-1.83 dB
High-Mid
What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 1KHz-2KHz.
When it matters: Most instruments, especially vocals, get their intensity and clarity from this range. Over-emphasis sounds honky and harsh, under-emphasis sounds weak and distant.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
-0.28 dB

The Bose QC35 have a very good mid-range. Low-mid, which is an essential region for almost all instruments, is flat and well-balanced. But mid-mid and high-mid are a bit uneven, resulting in a bit of excess intensity and projection in the higher harmonics of vocals/leads. Overall, their mid-range is clear and open, but could be slightly forward sounding are bright tracks.

8.2 Treble
What it is: Frequency Response from 2KHz-20KHz
When it matters: When the material is heavy on high-range frequencies, such as voice, cymbals, and any other material where brightness, brilliance and airiness is desired.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Treble
Std. Err.
What it is: The amount of deviation (weighted standard error) in treble frequency response (2.5KHz-20KHz) as compared to a target response that would sound perfectly balanced to most people.
When it matters: When a balanced and neutral (reference) treble performance is desired.
Good value: <4dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
3.26 dB
Low-Treble
What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 2KHz-5KHz.
When it matters: Almost all instruments rely on this range for their presence, detail, and articulation. Over-emphasis can sound harsh and painful. Under-emphasis hurts the comprehensibility of vocals and lead instruments.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
1.3 dB
Mid-Treble
What it is: The average amount of over/under emphasis in frequency response from 5KHz-10KHz.
When it matters: This is the sibilance range. Cymbals, vocals, and lead instruments rely on this range for brightness and presence. Over-emphasis sounds piercing and painful, under-emphasis sounds dull and lispy.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
-2.82 dB
High-Treble
What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 10KHz-20KHz.
When it matters: This range gives brilliance and airiness to the sound. Over-emphasis sounds hissy, under-emphasis sounds closed-up and lifeless.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB
:
-1.51 dB

The treble is great. The response is a bit uneven, but the inconsistencies are too small to have a significant effect. The only remark here is that, because of the 1.3dB overemphasis in low-treble, some may find vocals and lead instruments a tad forward on these headphones.

Raw Frequency Response
What it is: The average uncompensated frequency response of the headphone. For in-ears and earbuds, this corresponds to the average of 5 measurements/re-seats on the dummy head (HMS). For over/on-ear headphones, this corresponds to the average of 5 measurements/re-seats on the HMS (Head Measurement System) for the mid and treble ranges, and 5 measurements/re-seats on 5 human subjects for the bass range.
When it matters: This is for those who want to see the raw and uncompensated frequency response of the headphone. Some of the more advanced users, are able to read and evaluate headphone frequency response in its raw form and without compensation. This will be especially useful to them if they have their own headphone compensation/target curve, which may differ from the compensation curve/target response used by RTINGS.com.
Score components:
8.1 Frequency Response Consistency
What it is: The amount of deviation of each frequency response pass, from the average frequency response.
When it matters: Shows how consistently the headphones perform after re-positioning them.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Consistency L Bose QuietComfort 35 Consistency R
Avg. Std. Deviation
What it is: The average amount of deviation in frequency response of 5 re-seats, from the average frequency response.
When it matters: Shows how consistently the headphones perform after re-positioning them.
Good value: <0.5
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
0.37 dB

The bass and treble delivery of the Bose QC35 is exceptionally consistent. In the bass range, the maximum deviation measured across our 5 human subjects is about 0.5dB, which is excellent. This is similar to what we have seen with the WH-1000XM2 and the QuietComfort 25. This is most likely due to the active noise cancelling (ANC) system of the headphones, which checks for fit and seal using feedback. In the treble range they are a bit less consistent, with the maximum deviation of 6dB (below 10KHz), which is still within good limits.

8.0 Imaging
What it is: Imaging qualities are inherent to the audio content, the headphones have to 'reproduce' them rather than 'create' them. They determine how accurately the objects are positioned in the stereo image, and how transparent the imaging is.
When it matters: When accurate positioning of the objects in the stereo image, and clear and transparent imaging is desired.
Bose QuietComfort 35 Group Delay Bose QuietComfort 35 Phase Response
Weighted Group Delay
What it is: The average amount of group delay calculated based on a perceptual weighting filter. Group delay indicates how long it takes for each frequency to reach their maximum amplitude. This is a monaural quality and can be perceived even with one ear.
When it matters: Headphones with lower group delay have more transparent imaging and a tighter bass. Headphones with higher group delay in the bass range tend to have a wimpy and loose bass, and headphones with higher group delay in the treble range tend to have a less transparent imaging.
Good value: <0.5
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
0.11
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
What it is: The Left/Right balance of our test unit, that is, the amount of amplitude difference between the left and right drivers. This is not a design test, but a marker for manufacturing tolerance and ergonomics.
When it matters: When a properly balanced stereo image and low manufacturing tolerance is desired. A poor score indicates a noticeable difference in level between the left and right drivers.
Good value: <1.5
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
1.99
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
What it is: The amount of difference (Std. Err.) between the frequency response of the left and right drivers of our test unit. This is not a design test, but a marker for manufacturing tolerance and ergonomics.
When it matters: When an even and stable stereo image, as well as a low manufacturing tolerance, is desired. A poor score indicates there may be 'holes' in the stereo image at certain frequencies.
Good value: <2
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
1.89
Weighted Phase Mismatch
What it is: The amount of difference (Std. Err.) between the phase response of the left and right drivers of our test unit. This is not a design test, but a marker for manufacturing tolerance and ergonomics.
When it matters: When an even and stable stereo image, as well as a low manufacturing tolerance is desired. A poor score indicates there may be inaccuracies in the stereo image reproduction at certain frequencies.
Good value: <16
Noticeable difference: 3
:
5.33

The imaging is very good. The weighted group delay is 0.11 which great. The group delay graph also shows that the entire response is below our audibility threshold. This is not the case with some other Bluetooth headphones such as the MDR-1000X. Additionally, the L/R drivers of our test unit were pretty well-matched. This ensures an even and coherent stereo image, which is important for localizing instruments and objects (such as voices, instruments, and footsteps) in music and video games.

5.1 Soundstage
What it is: Soundstage qualities are not inherent to the audio content, the headphones have to 'create' them rather than 'reproduce' them. They determine whether the sound is perceived to be coming from inside or in front of the head, how open and spacious the soundstage is, how much the headphones acoustically interact with the environment, and how strong the phantom center is.
When it matters: When an accurately produced, large and spacious soundstage, similar to that of a stereo loudspeaker setup is desired.
Bose QuietComfort 35 PRTF
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
What it is: The standard deviation of the PRTF (Pinna-related transfer function) of the headphones compared to a reference loudspeaker's PRTF at 30°. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This test does not apply to in-ears and earbuds, due to the lack of pinna interaction.
When it matters: An accurate pinna activation is mainly responsible for how natural and speaker-like the soundstage is perceived to be. The less error in the shape of the PRTF, the more natrual and speaker-like the perception of the soundstage will be. High amounts of error may indicate a soundstage that is unnatural or odd.
Good value: <2.5
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
4.21 dB
PRTF Size (Avg.)
What it is: The average amplitude of the PRTF (Pinna-related transfer function) of the headphones compared to that of a reference loudspeaker's PRTF at 30°. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This test does not apply to in-ears and earbuds, due to the lack of pinna interaction.
When it matters: This value is responsible for the perceived size of the soundstage. The higher the value, the larger the perceived size of the soundstage. However, values above the reference (5.0dB) could result in a soundstage that is perceived as unnatural or odd.
Good value: >3.7
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
9.15 dB
PRTF Distance
What it is: The depth of the "10KHz notch" of the headphone's PRTF, which is caused by phase cancellations at the concha. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This test does not apply to in-ears and earbuds, due to the lack of pinna interaction.
When it matters: This value is mainly responsible for the perceived distance and elevation of the soundstage. A small distance value may result in a soundstage that is perceived to be located inside the head. Larger values may help pull the soundstage out from inside of the head and bring it to the front.
Good value: >13
Noticeable difference: 1
:
11.82 dB
Openness
What it is: How open the headphones are, and how open and spacious they sound. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This test differentiates between acoustically and electronically produced crosstalk and only takes the acoustically generated crosstalk into account. This value is the inverse of the Noise Isolation test score, and could be indirectly related the acoustic impedance of the headphones.
When it matters: When a headphone with a sense of an open, and spacious soundstage is desired. A value of 10 indicates a fully open headphone, and a value of 0 indicates a fully closed headphone.
Good value: >7.5
Noticeable difference: 0.5
:
1.5
Acoustic Space Excitation
What it is: How loud the headphones are, and how much they excite their environment acoustically. If the headphones are loud and open enough, the sound leaking from the headphones will be affected by the environment (reflections/reverb) before reflecting back into the open headphones and to the listener's ears. This quality is monaural and can be perceived even with one ear. This value is the inverse of the Leakage test score.
When it matters: Headphones with higher excitation values, similar to openness, tend to have soundstages that are perceived as more open and spacious.
Good value: >7.5
Noticeable difference: 0.5
:
3.9
Correlated Crosstalk
What it is: How strong and solid the phantom center is. This is mostly a stereo quality and its effects on mono content are minimal. This test is sensitive to the phase of the crosstalk and whether it is produced acoustically or electronically.
When it matters: When a true reproduction of the stereo image is desired. A value of 0 indicates no crosstalk, or that the existing crosstalk is not correlated enough to affect the phantom center. A negative score means the crosstalk is out of phase with the original signal, resulting in a slightly wider stereo image at the expense of creating a 'hole' at the center of the stereo field. A positive score means the crosstalk is in phase and positively affecting the phantom center.
Good value: >1dB
Noticeable difference: 0.3dB
:
0.01 dB

The soundstage of the Bose, like most other headphones is sub-par. Their PRTF graph doesn't quite match our reference speaker's in shape (accuracy), which means that the perceived soundstage may not be quite nautral sounding. However, they activate the pinna to a good degree regardless (PRTF Size), suggesting that the perceived soundstage won't be too small, like on-ears. Overall, the soundstage of these headphones is better than most on-ears and in-ears, but won't have the natural and out-of-head quality of a speaker setup.

7.1 Total Harmonic Distortion
What it is: The subtle, unwanted frequencies (harmonics) produced alongside the intended frequencies.
When it matters: When clean and pure sound reproduction is desired, though its effect is not as noticable as frequency response.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Distortion
Weighted THD @ 90
What it is: The overall amount of harmonic distortion measured at 90dB SPL. To make the score more perceptually relevant, more weight is given to the higher frequencies.
When it matters: How pure the sound is at moderate listening levels.
Good value: <0.100
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
1.574
Weighted THD @ 100
What it is: The overall amount of harmonic distortion measured at 100dB SPL. To make the score more perceptually relevant, more weight is given to the higher frequencies.
When it matters: How pure the sound is at loud listening levels.
Good value: <0.300
Noticeable difference: 0.1
:
8.111

The Bose QuietComfort 35 have a decent harmonic distortion performance. In the bass range, the overall amount of harmonic distortion is low and within good limits. However, their THD is rather elevated in the treble range which could make vocals, leads, and cymbals a bit harsh and brittle sounding.

7.9

Isolation

Score components:

The Bose 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 busy commutes or noisy flights, which makes them great for that use case. Unfortunately, they leak quite a bit and would be distracting to the people around you at moderate volumes.

8.5 Noise Isolation
What it is: How much outside noise is blocked out by putting the headphones on.
When it matters: If the headphones are going to be used in a noisy envinronment (airplane, subway, etc.)
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Noise Isolation
Overall Attenuation
What it is: The overall amount of environmental noise reduction in dB.
When it matters: In loud envinronments like planes, trains, offices, etc.
Good value: <-20dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
:
-25.16 dB
Bass
What it is: The overall amount of noise isolation in the bass range (20Hz-250Hz).
When it matters: When the outside noise is bass-heavy, like in airplanes.
Good value: <-15dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
:
-15.7 dB
Mid
What it is: The overall amount of noise isolation in the mid-range (250Hz-2.5KHz).
When it matters: When the environment's noise is mid-heavy, like in an office.
Good value: <-15dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
:
-25.58 dB
Treble
What it is: The overall amount of noise isolation in the treble range (2.5KHz-20KHz).
When it matters: When the environment's noise is treble-heavy. Although uncommon, areas with sharp sounds fall under this category.
Good value: <-30dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
:
-35.17 dB
Self-Noise
What it is: The amount of noise created by the active electronics of the headphones (if applicable), measured from 300Hz-20KHz. Applies mostly to wireless and noise-cancelling headphones.
When it matters: If too loud, it could become distracting when listening to quiet material like podcasts and audiobooks.
Good value: <16dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
:
15.9 dB

The Bose QuietComfort 35 is one of our best-performing over-ear headphones. They achieve more than 15dB of isolation in the bass range, which is important for cancelling out the rumble of airplane and bus engines. In the mid-range they isolate by more than 22dB, which is important for cutting out human speech. In the treble range, which is occupied by sharp S and T sounds, they achieve about 35dB of isolation which is good. Overall their ANC performance is nearly identical to that of QuietComfort 35 II, and the difference in the bass range is due to our updated test tone.

6.6 Leakage
What it is: The amount of sound bleeding out of the headphones.
When it matters: When the listener doesn't want people around them (in office, recording studio, etc.) to hear what is being listened to.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Leakage
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
What it is: The amount of sound leakage heard 1 foot away from the user, while the user is listening to a 100dB SPL signal.
When it matters: When you don't want people hear what you are listening to.
Good value: <35dB
Noticeable difference: 1dB
:
41.86 dB

The Bose QuietComfort 35 have an average leakage performance. 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 range. The level of the leakage is also relatively loud. Overall, the leakage will be audible to people around you at high volumes and in moderately quiet environments, such as a quiet office.

6.1

Microphone

What it is: The microphone section shows the quality of speech capture and transmission by the mic, as well as how well the microphone under test handles noisy environments.
When it matters: For your speech to be transmitted to and understood properly by the listener, the microphone needs to have a good recording quality. If the environment the microphone is being used in is noisy, a microphone with a good noise handling performance would be needed as well.
Score components:
Integrated
What it is: The microphone integrated in the ear cup or ear bud of a wireless headphone.
When it matters: For calls, gaming and voice over IP software or for any other use of the microphone.
Good value: Yes
:
Yes
In-line
What it is: The microphone inside the in-line remote of audio cables for wired and wireless headsets.
When it matters: In-line microphone are usually better than integrated mics. If you need better recording quality and noise handling for calls, gaming and voice over IP software then use the audio cable of your wired or wireless headphone if it has an inline microphone.
Good value: Yes
:
No
Boom
What it is: A typically better microphone, that's also adjustable and extends so that the mic is closer to your mouth.
When it matters: Much better recording quality and noise handling than in-line or integrated mics. Primarily used for gaming and voice over IP software.
Good value: Yes
:
No
Detachable Boom
What it is: A boom mic that is detachable from the headset.
When it matters: If you want to use your headphone outdoors without the bulk and hassle of the Boom mic.
:
N/A

The performance of the Bose QuietComfort 35's integrated microphone is mediocre. Speech recorded/transmitted with the mic of the Bose will sound thin and noticeably muffled. This could make understanding the speech a bit difficult. They also don't do too well in noisy environments and will struggle to separate speech from ambient noise even in moderately loud environments, such as a busy street.

5.8 Recording Quality
What it is: Microphone recording quality shows how natural, neutral, extended and intelligible speech would be with the device under test, in a quiet environment.
When it matters: A microphone with a good recording quality ensures that the person listening to you would hear a full, clear, and easily understandable speech. Therefore, it is important whenever a good quality of speech transmission and intelligibility is needed.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 Microphone Frequency Response
Recorded Speech
What it is: Actual audio recording of the headphone's microphone, recorded while placed on the dummy head, with speech being played back through the dummy head's mouth simulator.
When it matters: When a clean, full, and intelligible speech transmission is required.
:
LFE
What it is: Low-frequency extension shows how deep the bass response of the microphone is, and therefore, how deep and full your voice would sound to the listener. It is the lowest frequency at which the frequency response reaches -3dB of the target response.
When it matters: LFE is not a big factor in speech intelligibility and even speech recorded with a mic that has an LFE of 500Hz could still be easily understood. Therefore, it is mostly important if you are concerned with how deep and full your voice would be heard.
Good value: <150Hz
Noticeable difference: 30Hz
:
281.0 Hz
FR Std. Dev.
What it is: Frequency Response Standard Deviation shows how accurately and balanced sound is captured by the microphone at each frequency. FR Std. Dev. is calculated between LFE and HFE, and the rest of the spectrum is ignored.
When it matters: A good frequency response is desired when a natural and neutral speech quality is desired. As opposed to HFE which is more a metric for speech intelligibility, frequency response could be considered as a metric for a natural and neutral sound.
Good value: >3.5dB
Noticeable difference: 0.5dB
:
2.54 dB
HFE
What it is: High-frequency extension is the highest frequency at which the frequency response reaches -3dB of the target response. It shows how extended the treble response of the microphone is.
When it matters: HFE is one the most important factors in speech intelligibility. The higher the HFE, the brighter, more open, and more extended the speech quality will be which makes it a lot easier to understand by the listener.
Good value: >8KHz
Noticeable difference: 1KHz
:
2152.7 Hz
Weighted THD
What it is: The unwanted frequencies (harmonics) produced alongside the intended frequencies, which cause deformation of an output signal compared to its input.
When it matters: When clean and pure sound reproduction is desired, though its effect is not as noticable as frequency response.
Good value: <1.5
Noticeable difference: 1.0
:
16.622
Gain
What it is: Shows how much louder the microphone can go above our reference loudness level. The gain value is reported relative to our reference level, which is 94dB at a distance of 5cm from the mouth.
When it matters: A microphone with a high gain is important when the input signal (speech) is very quiet. For example when whispering, or talking on the phone in a library.
Good value: >18dB
Noticeable difference: 3dB
:
39.75 dB

The recording quality of the Bose QC35's integrated microphone is sub-par. The LFE (low-frequency extension) of 281Hz means that speech with these headphones will sound noticeably thin. The HFE (high-frequency extension) of 2.2KHz, indicates a muffled and lacking speech transmission. This will have a negative effect on the intelligibility of speech.

6.4 Noise Handling
What it is: How well the microphone is able to separate speech from background noise, so that the transmission would include more voice and less noise.
When it matters: When a clean and intelligible speech transmission is desired in a noisy situation like talking on the phone on a busy street or on the bus.
Score components:
Bose QuietComfort 35 SpNR
Speech + Pink Noise :
Speech + Subway Noise :
SpNR
What it is: Speech to Noise Ratio is the difference in level between speech and background noise as heard by the listener
When it matters: If the microphone is going to be used in a noisy environment, it is important for it to be able to separate the speech from background noise, so the voice would be easily audible and understandable.
Good value: >24dB
Noticeable difference: 3dB
:
16.69 dB

The noise handling of the mic is mediocre. In our test, it achieved a speech-to-noise ratio of about 17dB, which is below average. This makes this microphone suitable mostly for quiet environments.

8.1

Active Features

What it is: Headphones with active components that require a battery. This includes noise cancelling and wireless headphones that actively reduce noise or transmit audio via a wireless connection.
When it matters: How suitable the power and wireless specifications of an active headphone will be, depending on your listening habits. The range and/or discharge time of the active headphone you select will be important if you're often on the move or have long uninterrupted listening sessions.
Score components:

The Bose QuietComfort 35 have a great battery life but a mediocre app. They last up to 18 hours on a single charge and only take about 2 hours to charge. They also have an auto-off timer accessible through their bundled app that lets you select between different time intervals. Unfortunately, the bundled app is a little lackluster only give you a limited amount of control over the headphones active features especially when compared to other headphones like the Sony WH-1000XM2 or the Sennheiser PXC 550 Wireless.

8.3 Battery
What it is: The power source of your headphones. All headphones with active features have a battery that will deplete over time.
When it matters: To continue using the active features of your headphones. Some models lose features or switch off completely when the battery is drained, which limits what you can do with them until the next charge.
Battery Type
What it is: The type of battery that the headphones use. Usually AAA or embedded, Li-ion rechargeable batteries.
When it matters: When your headphones run out of power. Rechargeable batteries usually charge via the headphones Micro-USB port whereas AAA batteries have to be replaced or charged with an external device.
:
Rechargable
Battery Life
What it is: The amount of time it takes for a headphones' battery to be completely drained. Battery life will vary depending on the active features used and volume level.
When it matters: For active headphones that connect wirelessly, have noise cancellation or other audio-enhancing features, that cease to work once the battery is dead.
Good value: >10hrs
Noticeable difference: 0.5hrs
:
18.5 hrs
Charge Time
What it is: The amount of time your active headphones have to be connected to a power source to charge from 0 to a 100%. However, charging time will vary depending on your power source.
When it matters: To be able to use the active features of your headphones. Especially, wireless ones that completely switch off and need to be recharged when the battery is dead.
Good value: 2h or less
Noticeable difference: 0.25h
:
2 hrs
Power Saving Feature
What it is: A feature that turns off the headphones, after a set time, when they're not in use.
When it matters: To prolong battery life when the headphones are not being used, or if you forget to manually turn off your headphones.
:
Auto-Off Timer
Audio while charging
What it is: Some active headphones remain usable while charging. They continue to stream audio and do not disable other active features.
When it matters: This makes sure that your headphones's battery are not being drained when your relatively close to a power source. However, this means wireless headphones will need a wired connection to the power source during the charging process.
:
No
Passive Playback
What it is: Active headphones that still work when all their active features are turned off or out of power.
When it matters: If you run out of power and do not have spare AA/AAA batteries or access to a power source to recharge your headphones.
:
Yes

The Bose 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.

7.0 App Support
What it is: The additional app provided to enhance your listening experience. They typically deliver a set of practical features that give you more control over the sound, noise cancelling and effects that the headphones produce.
When it matters: An app with a lot of features allows you to customize your listening experience to suit your taste and preferences. For example, additions like an equalizer can give you more bass or treble and room effects can simulate a bigger Soundstage in closed back headphones.
Score components: Subjectively assigned
Bose QuietComfort 35 App Picture
App Name : Bose Connect
iOS : Yes
Android : Yes
Mac OS : N/A
Windows : N/A
Equalizer
What it is: Parametric, graphic or preset sound profiles that slightly alter the frequency response.
When it matters: If you want to tailor, your listening experience. Depending on what you're listening to you may want more or less bass for some tracks or more mid-range for vocals-heavy audio.
:
No
ANC control
What it is: Control over the Active noise canceling technology. This could be either a simple on/off button, and adjustable slider or even adaptive self-regulating noise cancellation.
When it matters: If you're in an environment where you need to monitor your surroundings or completely isolate yourself from ambient noise.
:
Adjustable
Mic Control : N/A
Room effects
What it is: Room effects that enhance the audio quality to make it more immersive.
When it matters: If you want to further tweak your listening experience. Adding room effects, can simulate a more spacious Soundstage or deliver a surround sound-like feel.
:
No
Playback control
What it is: An in-app player that gives you access to play/stop, track skipping or volume controls directly with the app.
When it matters: It's a shortcut that allows you to control your audio without leaving the application.
:
Yes
Button Mapping : N/A
Surround Sound : N/A

The Bose Connect app is sleek but only offers a minimal list of features. It allows you to connect, rename, and update the QC35 but doesn't provide you with an equalizer. 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.

Update 18/07/2017: Firmware version 1.3.4. You can now adjust the level of noise canceling and share your music with another Bose Connect compatible headphone.

Noise Cancelation control

Music Share

QuietComfort 35 Auto-off Timer

5.6

Connectivity

What it is: The inputs and outputs of wired and wireless headphones, as well as their latency performance and range.
When it matters: To know how compatible your Bluetooth device, console or PC will be with your wired or wireless headset.
Score components:
  • 10% Bluetooth
  • 33% Wired
  • 10% Base/Dock
  • 22% Wireless Range
  • 25% Latency

The Bose QuietComfort 35 offer decent amount of connection options. They can pair simultaneously with multiple devices, they have an above-average wireless range and support NFC which makes pairing with smartphones a breeze. They also come with a regular audio cable that does not have an inline remote. This means that these headphones do not have a microphone that will be compatible with consoles. They also have a quite a bit of latency, which is fairly average for Bluetooth headphones but not ideal for watching movies and gaming.

8.8 Bluetooth
What it is: Bluetooth support for wireless headphones.
When it matters: To connect wirelessly to Bluetooth sources like your phone, tablet, console, PC and TV.
Score components:
  • 80% Multi-Device Pairing
  • 20% NFC
  • <1% PS4 Compatible
  • <1% Xbox One Compatible
Bluetooth Version : 4.1
Multi-Device Pairing
What it is: A Bluetooth profile that's allows some headphones to be simultaneously connected to multiple Bluetooth sources.
When it matters: To quickly switch between your Bluetooth sources. For example switching from your phone to your home or work PC.
Good value: 2 devices.
:
2 Devices
NFC
What it is: Near Field Communication technology that allows you to quickly, pair your headphones with your Bluetooth and NFC-enabled device.
When it matters: This makes pairing with an NFC-enabled device a lot easier than the typical and often tedious hold-to-pair procedure that most wireless headphones have.
Good value: Yes
:
Yes
PS4 Compatible
What it is: Bluetooth compatibility with the PlayStation 4.
When it matters: To connect your headphones wirelessly with your PS4.
Good value: Audio + Microphone
:
No
Xbox One Compatible
What it is: Bluetooth compatibility with the Xbox One.
When it matters: To connect your headphones wirelessly with your Xbox one.
Good value: Audio + Microphone
:
No

The Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones can pair simultaneously with 2 devices and support NFC. This makes them a rather versatile headphone when using Bluetooth. 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 keep the last sync devices in memory for automatic pairing when you turn the headphones on.

7.2 Wired
What it is: The type and compatibility of audio cables for wired and wireless headphones.
When it matters: For all devices with a regular audio jack (line-out) and also compatibility of the in-line remote/boom microphone with consoles and Personal computers.
Score components:
  • 13% Analog
  • 9% USB
  • 26% PS4 Compatible
  • 26% Xbox One Compatible
  • 26% PC Compatible
Cable Tested : iOS
Analog
What it is: A regular 1/8" TRS audio jack or a 1/4 or 1/16 TRS with a 1/8 TRS adapter.
When it matters: For all devices with a line out.
Good value: Yes
:
Yes
USB
What it is: A USB or USB adapter to connect to your devices for audio and microphone.
When it matters: A digital USB adapter usually offers a slight advantages over a regular audio jack, like a DAC, and amplifier module or software support and compatibility with PCs. However it may not be as compatible with consoles.
Good value: Yes
:
No
PS4 Compatible
What it is: PS4 compatibility with a regular 3 or 4 pin 1/8 TRS audio cable.
When it matters: When you want to use a wired headphone with your PS4
Good value: Audio + Microphone
:
Audio Only
Xbox One Compatible
What it is: Xbox One compatibility with a regular 3 or 4 pin 1/8 TRS audio cable.
When it matters: When you want to use a wired headphone with your Xbox One
Good value: Audio + Microphone
:
Audio Only
PC Compatible
What it is: PC compatibility with a regular 3 or 4 pin 1/8 TRS audio cable.
When it matters: When you want to use a wired headphone with your PC.
Good value: Audio + Microphone
:
Audio Only

These headphones come with a simple audio cable with no in-line remote or USB adapter. This means they do not have a mic that is compatible with consoles.

0 Base/Dock
What it is: The base station, dock or dongle transmitter of wireless headphones that receive data/audio via a proprietary frequency range.
When it matters: Knowing the inputs and outputs of the base/dock/dongle as well as its compatibility with consoles and Personal Computers. Also whether the base supports dock charging to easily recharge the headphones without any cables.
Score components:
  • 5% Optical Input
  • 22% Line In
  • 5% Line Out
  • 22% USB Input
  • 4% RCA Input
  • 9% PS4 Compatible
  • 9% Xbox One Compatible
  • 9% PC Compatible
  • 2% Power Supply
  • 13% Dock Charging
Wireless Type
What it is: The type of wireless connection used by the base station/dock to communicate with the headphones.
When it matters: For latency and range. For example Radio frequency has low latency but mediocre range when obstructed and proprietary docks have their own 2.x GHz or 5 GHz frequency which varies in performance.
:
N/A
Optical Input
What it is: Optical input for audio.
When it matters: Optical can carry a bit more data at faster speeds than typical wired connection which allows for more high quality, lossless audio.
Good value: Yes
:
N/A
Line In
What it is: The regular wired input via a 1/8" TRS audio jack.
When it matters: For any device that has a line out for audio transmission.
Good value: Yes
:
N/A
Line Out
What it is: A regular 1/8TRS audio jack output.
When it matters: If you need to share the audio source with other devices. A line out lets you connect other headphones or speakers to the dock/base station.
Good value: Yes
:
N/A
USB Input
What it is: A digital USB input instead of a typical 1/8 TRS line-in.
When it matters: A USB connection can provide both an audio input and power to the Dock or Base station.
:
N/A
RCA Input
What it is: Audio input using via an RCA connectors.
When it matters: Provides better stereo audio to the dock/base that's then transmitted to the headphones.
Good value: Yes
:
N/A
PS4 Compatible
What it is: Dock/Base station compatibility with the PlayStation 4.
When it matters: To be able to use all the features of the dock/base station with out losing audio or microphone capability.
Good value: Audio + Microphone
:
N/A
Xbox One Compatible
What it is: Dock/Base station compatibility with the Xbox One.
When it matters: To be able to use all the features of the dock/base station with out losing audio or microphone capability.
:
N/A
PC Compatible
What it is: Dock/Base station compatibility with your Personal Computer.
When it matters: To be able to use all the features of the dock/base station with out losing audio or microphone capability.
Good value: Audio + Microphone
:
N/A
Power Supply
What it is: The connector type of the power source.
When it matters: The accessibility of the power source. For example a power supply with USB/USB-C connects to multiple devices, PC , PS4, Xbox One or even with your regular phone charger whereas a A/C adapter is less common.
Good value: USB/USB-C
:
N/A
Dock Charging
What it is: Charging the headphones via the dock/base station instead of a charging cable.
When it matters: It makes charging your headphones easier and gives you a sport to store your headphones when they are not in use.
Good value: Yes
:
N/A

These headphones do not have a base/dock. If you want a versatile headset with a base that you can also use wired check out the Arctis 7 by SteelSeries.

8.0 Wireless Range
What it is: Headphones that offer a cable-free listening experience over a wireless network, typically via Bluetooth or radio frequency.
When it matters: If you don't want to be limited by the length of an audio cable. This means having the freedom to move around in your home or office with a much greater range than an audio cable could provide, especially, if the Bluetooth source is heavy or difficult to carry.
Score components:
Obstructed Range
What it is: The range that the wireless headphones can reach before dropping any audio when the Bluetooth source was placed in another room.
When it matters: If you can't or prefer not to carry your Bluetooth source on you, while listening to your audio in an indoor environment. Although, the obstructed wireless range will slightly depend on your home or office layout.
Good value: >35ft
Noticeable difference: 5ft
:
39 ft
Line of Sight Range
What it is: The range that the wireless headphones can reach before dropping any audio when in direct line of sight of the Bluetooth device.
When it matters: If you can't or prefer not to carry your Bluetooth source on you, while listening to your audio in a large and open environment.
Good value: 170ft or more
Noticeable difference: 10ft
:
116 ft

The Bose 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. They also have a decent line-of-sight range although it is not as good as the Beats Studio3 Wireless or the Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2

2.6 Latency
What it is: How long it takes for audio to play through your headphones once the audio signal has been sent from a source.
When it matters: When gaming or watching movies. High latency means you will hear the audio much later than the images you see on screen.
Score components:
Default Latency
What it is: The Base RF latency or the default sub-band coding (SBC) of most Bluetooth headphones.
When it matters: When watching videos a high latency can cause sync issues between the images you see and the audio you hear.
Good value: 50ms or less
Noticeable difference: 15ms
:
189 ms
aptX Latency
What it is: An audio coding algorithm (Codec) that improves bit rate efficiency. It reduces latency and improves sound quality over Bluetooth.
When it matters: For better sound quality if your often streaming music over Bluetooth. Also it slightly improves latency when watching videos with wireless headphones.
Good value: 50ms or less
Noticeable difference: 15ms
:
N/A
aptX(LL) Latency
What it is: Low latency variation of aptX that significantly reduces sync issues between video and sound when using Bluetooth headphones.
When it matters: When watching videos or gaming latency is a lot more noticeable than just listening to music.
Good value: 50ms or less
Noticeable difference: 5ms
:
N/A

The Bose QC35 have about 189ms of latency. While this is about average for most Bluetooth headphones with no additional low latency codecs, it's not ideal for watching videos and gaming. If you need to watch movies either use them wired or get the Audio-Technica ATH-M50x for their wired connection and good sound.

In the box

Bose QuietComfort 35 In the box Picture

  • Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones
  • Audio cable
  • Airline adapter
  • Carrying case
  • USB charging cable

Compared to other Headphones

Bose QuietComfort 35 Compare Picture

The Bose QuietComfort 35 are good noise canceling headphones with a super comfortable design. They do not look as high-end for their price but provide a decently versatile design that's great for commuting and sounds decently well-balanced even without an equalizer. Unfortunately, their sound can't be customized like some of the competing models and they tend to be a bit leaky at higher volumes.

Beats Studio3 Wireless

The Bose QuietComfort 35 are a better headset overall than the Beats Studio3 Wireless. The Bose have a more comfortable over-ear fit and stronger noise cancelation that will isolate better noisy environments. On the upside, the Beats have a better wireless range and a faster charging battery life than the Bose. The Beats are also a bit more stable for sports and some will prefer their sleek and stylized over-ear design over the Bose's somewhat bland but more professional look.

Sony WH-1000XM2

The Bose QuietComfort 35 are a slightly better wireless headset than the Sony WH-1000XM2. They're a bit more comfortable and better balanced than the Sonys. The Bose QC35 sound quality packs a good amount of punch and still sound sufficiently detailed with instruments and vocals thanks to their better balanced mid and treble ranges. The Sony WH-1000XM2, on the other hand, have more control over their noise canceling feature, which can also optimize for the environments you're in. The Sony's also have a more premium looking build quality and a better list of features including the touch-sensitive controls and a customizable sound quality.

Audio-Technica ATH-M50x

The Bose QuietComfort 35 are the better option if you want to go wireless, but for a wired design, the Audio-Technica ATH-M50x sound a bit better. The Bose QuietComfort 35 are a lot more comfortable than the M50x. They're also wireless and noise canceling, which make them a lot more versatile to use outdoors, in noisy environments, and at the office. The ATH M50X, on the other hand, are a more critical listening focused headphone, with a better-balanced sound, and a wired design that has no latency. This makes them slightly better than the Bose for recording, watching videos, and even gaming if you do not care about having a mic.

Bose QuietControl 30

The Bose QuietControl 30 are a better choice if you want a compact earbud design, but if you prefer over-ears, then get the Bose QuietComfort 35 instead. The QC35 are a bit more comfortable for every one thanks to their lightweight and well padded over-ear fit. They're also a bit easier to use overall than the QC 30 and have a better battery life, wireless range, sound quality, and soundstage. The QC30, on the upside, are a lot more compact and travel-friendly and still provide enough isolation for most commutes and long flights. They also barely leak so you can play your music louder without distracting the people around you, which is great for the office.  

Sony MDR-1000X

The Bose QuietComfort 35 are a better headset overall than the Sony MDR-1000X. They're a bit more comfortable and have a more consistent and balanced sound quality than the Sonys. The Bose are also easier to use and can easily pair with 2 devices simultaneously. The Sony MDR-1000X, on the other hand, have a very similar noise cancellation feature but with a more premium looking build quality and touch-sensitive controls. However, they have a few manufacturing defects that make the headband a bit more susceptible to breaking under stress than the Bose.

Sennheiser PXC 550 Wireless

The Sennheiser PXC 550 are a versatile wireless headset with great customization options and a good sound. They do not have as much isolation as the Bose QC35 but they provide more control over their active features. They also have a comfortable design that's slightly more well rounded than the QC35 thanks to their tighter fit which makes them a bit more stable for sports. The PXC 550 are a great alternative to the Bose but won't be as well-suited for commuters due to their slightly weaker isolation.

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Conclusion
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7.4Mixed Usage
What it is This is the combination of the different use cases to evaluate how versatile the headphones are. Therefore an everyday headphone should be well-rounded enough to adapt to most situations and environments without significant losses in sound quality, design ergonomics or isolation.
Score components:
Above-average everyday headphones. The Bose QuietComfort 35 are versatile and offer a comfortable, well-built wireless design. They have a good sound and great noise canceling, which makes them a great option for commuters and frequent flyers. They come with a regular audio cable for more latency sensitive uses like watching a movie and gaming although they won't be ideal for those use cases especially when using Bluetooth. They're also a bit leaky.
7.7Critical Listening
What it is The level of audio fidelity a headphone can reproduce. Therefore a balanced and true representation of bass, mids, treble, soundstage and imaging, as well as a comfortable listening experience, is essential for critical listening.
Score components:
Above-average for critical listening. They're comfortable for long listening sessions and have a good decently well-balanced sound quality. They pack a good amount of bass without drowning the instruments and vocals. However, their closed back design is not ideal for more critical listeners due to the reduced soundstage.
7.7Commute/Travel
What it is How well the headphones handle the loud environments involved in commuting or traveling. Therefore your listening experience should be comfortable, hassle-free and as isolated from noise as possible.
Score components:
The Bose QuietComfort 35 are ideal for commuting. They fare well in loud environments, busy commutes, and noisy flights, thanks to their exceptional active noise canceling. They're easy-to-use, comfortable and not too bulky.
7.1Sports/Fitness
What it is How well-adapted the headphones are, to use while doing sports or strenuous exercise. Therefore the headphones should not be too cumbersome and deliver a stable and comfortable listening experience.
Score components:
Decent for sports use. They have a comfortable wireless design and a good control scheme. They're not too bulky but a little unstable. They also make your ears quite warm during more intense exercise due to their relatively low breathability.
7.7Office
What it is How well the headphones can deliver a comfortable and isolated listening experience in an office-like environment. They should not leak much and should block the noise of a busy office.
Score components:
Good for office use. They're super comfortable and will easily block the chatter of most office environments. Unfortunately, they also leak quite a bit at higher volumes, so the people around you may hear what you're listening to.
6.1Home Theater
Score components:
Average for home theater use. They're comfortable headphones that you can wear for hours, but unfortunately, they have too much latency for watching videos and movies. They come with a regular audio cable but it's pretty short and won't be ideal for most home theater setups unless you have an Aux extension cord.
5.8Gaming
Score components:
Below-average for gaming. They're comfortable, they have a good sound with a lot of bass and have a decent wireless range. Unfortunately, they have a mediocre-at-best integrated mic and a lot of latency which is not really suitable for gaming. They're also not compatible with consoles via Bluetooth and only have a regular audio cable with no inline microphone so you will only get audio if connect them to your Xbox One or PS4 controller.

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