To many, it may come as a surprise, but the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II were launched on the same date that Apple debuted its iPhone 14 series and AirPods Pro 2. Though Bose was the first company to introduce noise cancellation, it was already far behind brands like Apple and Sony. But with the introduction of QuietComfort Earbuds II, which is the successor of the original QuietComfort Earbuds, Bose has raised the bar quite high, specifically in the department of ANC, for other companies. Continue reading the vlog to find out in details about what else the premium earbuds have to offer.
Bose has completely overhauled the design for the QuietComfort Earbuds II, which are now 30% smaller than the Gen 1. The QuietComfort Earbuds II’s stem is not huge and comes with 3 pairs of ear tips and 3 pairs of stability bands. The QuietComfort Earbuds II have a refined look with detailed curves, are extremely comfortable to wear, and do not resemble a Bluetooth headset from earlier days like the QuietComfort Earbuds gen 1. The earbuds have a dimension of 1.72 x 3.05 x 2.24 cm and weigh only 6.24 g each. Considering other earbuds, this is fairly lightweight, and the stability bands and ear tips are also soft, so it sits perfectly in the ear and neither causes any problems nor gets loose while doing activities. The overall build quality is top-notch, with premium-quality plastic and gold plating inside. Bose has also revamped the charging case and opted for a vertical model that is thinner, lighter, and taller and flips open at the top, weighing only 59.8 g.
The sound quality has vastly improved since the first generation, and the QuietComfort Earbuds II can pick up on a wide range of details, particularly at the low end of the spectrum. Bose has truly been able to handle the texture and depth of these earbuds, where each instrument’s sound stands on its own. The QuietComfort Earbuds II come with two sound modes: Aware (Transparency Mode) and Quiet (Active Noise Cancellation). The Bose Music app also allows you to create somewhat in-between ambient sound and ANC and provides you with options like Focus, Commute, Workout, and many others. The Custom Tuning Technology present in the earbuds is truly wondrous. When users put the earbuds in their ears, an audible sound is sent for a few seconds to measure the acoustics of the ear and make calculations. Each ear has its own unique frequency module, and this technology helps to tune it in that manner and produce audio accordingly. In the Transparency Mode, the Custom Tune Technology is able to keep undesirable environmental sounds from reaching the ear, and with its ActiveSense, it carefully blocks harsh sounds that can damage your hearing or startle you. Now, let’s talk about the ANC on the QuietComfort Earbuds II, which is without a doubt the best on the market right now. Once turned on, you will forget about the sounds of the entire world, and the Custom Tune Technology further helps this by calibrating the noise reduction signal. There are four microphones on each earbud, and the call quality is still lackluster. Like most earbuds, you will feel like you are talking on a speakerphone, but the SelfVoice option makes this a bit more bearable.
With ANC on, Bose promises the earbuds will provide 6 hours of music playback and 3 additional top-ups in the case, which seems to be decent. Each earbud will take 1 hour to get fully charged, while the case takes 3 hours. The quick charge feature in the QuietComfort Earbuds II lets you enjoy uninterrupted music for 2 hours with just 20 minutes of charge. With such a premium price tag, the absence of wireless charging in these earbuds is quite shocking. Another drawback is that the Bose Music app does not reflect the charge levels, and the user has to gauge the amount of juice left by following the single color-changing LED, which is a bit frustrating.
Connectivity And Controls
QuietComfort Earbuds II come with the latest Bluetooth 5.3 and are splashproof with their IPX4 rating. A diverse array of touch controls are present on the slimmer outside panel of the earbuds. Along with covering the basics, the long press is vividly customizable and can be used for summoning the voice assistant or switching between calls and music. You can also swipe up or down for volume control. Unfortunately, the QuietComfort Earbuds II supports only two codecs, AAC and SBC, and does not even have Snapdragon Sound compatibility, which is quite unexpected given that Bose has a partnership with Qualcomm. Multipoint connectivity allows the earbuds to connect with more than one device, and this is also absent in QuietComfort Earbuds II.
Available in two colors, Triple Black and Soapstone, the QuietComfort Earbuds II is priced at $299. The one earbud that can go toe to toe with the QuietComfort Earbuds II is undoubtedly the Sony WF–1000XM4, which supports wireless charging, 360 Reality Audio, has magnificent ANC, and is even priced at $278. The other one that can challenge it in the audio department is the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3. If balanced sound and noise cancellation are your top priorities, then the QuietComfort Earbuds II are a perfect choice, but if you are tight on budget, want a variety of codecs, and are concerned about the size and wireless charging, then it is better to look for other options.
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