8 Best Bose Headphones [2022]

Bose headphones on a desk (From: Unsplash)
Bose headphones on a desk (From: Unsplash)
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Check out Bose’s finest offerings, plus some tips on how to choose the best Bose headphones for you.

NameForm FactorANCBattery LifePrice
Bose QuietComfort 45 Best OverallOver-earY24 hoursBUY
Bose 700 Strong Runner-UpOver-earY20 hoursBUY
Bose QC35 ii Gaming Best for GamingOver-earY20 hours wireless
40 hours wired
BUY
Bose SoundSport Wireless Best BudgetIn-ear w/ neckbandN6 hoursBUY
Bose Sport Open Earbuds Best for Outdoor WorkoutsTrue wirelessN8 hoursBUY
Bose Sport Earbuds Best for SportsTrue wirelessN5 hoursBUY
Bose Frames Tempo Most UniqueAudio glassesN8 hoursBUY
Bose QuietComfort Earbuds Best All-rounder EarbudsTrue wirelessY6 hoursBUY

How to Pick the Best Bose Headphones

Bose has been around for more than 50 years. And in that time, they’ve developed a sterling reputation amongst music enthusiasts through consistent innovation.

Today, Bose is known for advanced acoustic technology, great features, excellent noise cancellation, and comfort. It also offers some of the most comprehensive audio equipment collections, which include everything from true wireless earbuds to aviation headsets.

Needless to say, there’s certainly something for everyone. The challenge, however, lies in deciding which one is for you.

We all appreciate and listen to music in different ways. And having a good balance between comfort, great sound, functionality, and convenience remains the most important thing. But naturally, when faced with a lot of exemplary choices, the decision becomes difficult.

To help you out, we’ve gone through Bose’s collection and come up with our top picks for traveling, gaming, exercising, and more. We’ve also shared some buying factors for you to consider when choosing a pair of Bose headphones. So, let’s begin!

Will they match your lifestyle?

As mentioned, Bose’s extensive collection includes a range of models designed for specific lifestyles. And though we can be easily swayed by sweet aesthetics or cool features, the key to choosing the best Bose headphones still relies heavily on how and where you’ll use them.

Here are the essential lifestyle factors to consider:

Form factor

Ideally, the shape and style of your headphones or earbuds should complement, and not hinder, your lifestyle. For instance, if you’re the type who’s always on the go, it’d make more sense to get a pair of lightweight, wireless cans, instead of bulky, wired ones that’ll only get in your way.

Here are several styles offered by Bose, and who should get them:

  • Over-Ears: These feature ear cups that fully enclose the ears, and are often equipped with excellent noise cancellation. This makes them great for focused listening, and thus ideal for travelers, music lovers, gamers, or those who work in noisy environments.
  • In-Ears with Neckband: In-ears can be placed much deeper in the ears, giving you good sound and noise isolation. The addition of a neckband ensures they stay in place while you’re active. As such, they’re perfect for runners, joggers, or anyone regularly doing vigorous activities.
  • True Wireless: True wireless earbuds have no wires connecting both drivers, giving you total freedom of movement. They’re good for commuters, frequent travelers, or anyone who enjoys listening to music on the go. Those who play sports or just don’t like feeling wires around their neck while they work out can also opt for true wireless earbuds.
  • Open-Ears: Bose’s open-ear designs come in the form of earbuds and audio sunglasses. These have drivers that are positioned outside the ear, keeping the ear canal open. It’s perfect for those who want to listen to music while retaining an awareness of their immediate surroundings.

Controls

Bose headphones and earbuds typically feature touch controls, buttons, or a combination of both. The choice of which to go for depends on preference, so it’s important to get to know the pros and cons of both.

Touch controls
What We Like
  • The absence of button bumps makes for a sleek, less cluttered design.
  • Properly implemented touch controls can make operating it quicker.
  • Less mechanical wear-and-tear from pressing.
What We Don't Like
  • Steeper learning curve, since there’s no universal set of gestures for headphones.
  • No tactile feedback to confirm if a control has been tapped properly.
  • Inaccurate taps can cause track skips, especially if you’re heavy-handed.
  • Not being able to see touch controls can make operating the headphones difficult.
  • Can be difficult to operate while exercising or wearing gloves.
Buttons
What We Like
  • Tactile feedback lets you know you’ve properly pressed the button.
  • More reliable than touch controls.
  • Easier to operate even if you’re on the move.
What We Don't Like
  • Poor design or spacing can feel cluttered and lead to accidental pressing.
  • Can produce an audible click when pressed, which can sound annoying.
  • Pressing buttons too hard can cause earbuds to go further into the ear.

IP rating

An Ingress Protection (IP) rating indicates how protected a device is against dust and water intrusion. The rating ranges from X to 6 for dust, and X to 8 for water. The ‘X’ simply means that the device hasn’t been tested for dust or water protection. On the other hand, higher numbers mean that the device is better protected.

Most Bose headphones and earbuds have a maximum IP rating of IPX4, which means they’re protected from water splashes from any direction for about 5 minutes. This also means that wearing them in the pool or shower is definitely out of the question.

Additional features

Some headphones come with extra features designed to complement specific uses, such as gaming or working out. Here are some of the great bonus features to look out for in Bose headphones:

  • Voice Assistant integration for hands-free functionality.
  • Built-in sensors like heart rate monitors to keep your vitals in check.
  • 3rd-party app compatibility that lets you access your favorite music or fitness apps.
  • Optional hardware for better flexibility. These can include detachable boom mics, interchangeable lenses for audio sunglasses, and extra ear tips.

Bose Music vs Bose Connect App

The Bose Connect app was launched in 2015 and was designed to manage pairing between Bose devices and music sources. In 2021, Bose introduced Bose Music, an upgraded companion app programmed with lots of additional features. Some older Bose headphones and earbuds still use the older app, while more recent models have transitioned to Bose Music.

Unfortunately, you can’t exactly choose which app to use with your device since their supported devices depend on Bose’s discretion. And since each app has its own features, having the right app can be a major buying factor to some.

Both apps offer the following features:

  • Quick access to volume control and battery levels.
  • Option to control multiple Bose smart devices in different rooms.
  • Voice Assistant integration.
  • Option to adjust noise cancellation levels.
  • Option to update device software.
  • Option to customize shortcuts and Action Button commands.

There are also some notable differences in both apps:

Bose Connect

  • Option to display heart rate monitor data from SoundSport Pulse headphones.
  • Option to link two pairs of headphones for shared music listening.
  • Stand-by timer.
  • Requires you to create an account.

Bose Music

  • Access to Spotify, Pandora, Amazon Music, SiriusXM, iHeartRadio, and TuneIn.
  • Option to set your favorite radio stations and playlists as presets for easy access.
  • Option to enhance audio with equalizer or audio presets.
  • Power saver function.
  • Option to customize your voice volume for calls with Self Voice.
  • No need to create an account to use the app.

You can check out which devices are compatible with Bose Connect and Bose Music on the official website.

The Bose Connect app has had some privacy issues in the past. The main complaint was that the app had collected “data along with other personal identifiers to third-parties without its customers’ knowledge or consent”.

Bose has since taken steps to assure customers that their data is safe by changing their privacy policy to offer more transparency, and adding an “opt out” option for data collection.

Active Noise Cancellation

In 1978, Bose’s founder Dr. Amar Gopal Bose conceptualized the earliest precursor to the active noise cancellation (ANC) technology that we know today. So, it’s not surprising that Bose remains one of the leading brands for ANC today.

ANC technology in headphones works with the help of tiny microphones in the earcups. When these mics detect ambient noise, the headphones create an opposite frequency to cancel it out.

ANC headphones are best at eliminating continuous low-frequency sounds. As such, they’re ideal for use on airplanes, in crowded places filled with the constant drone of people’s voices, or for drowning out a noisy fan or AC unit at home.

It’s important to note that not all Bose headphones have an ANC feature. And those that do are not equal in terms of performance. Some have more effective ANC capabilities due to firmware used, the number of dedicated mics for ANC, and technical integration.

Most ANC headphones come with 3 noise reduction levels, though can have as many as 11. This allows you to customize your ANC levels to suit various situations that need mid-level noise reduction.

However, there are some safety concerns surrounding the use of ANC headphones including dizziness-inducing pressure in the ears and tinnitus. But, these can be attributed to the increased noise reduction creating a perception of pressure or ringing in the ears.

Some people don’t experience this. But for those who are new to ANC headphones, it’s important to remember that there will be an adjustment period before things start to sound normal. If not, then ANC headphones may not be for you.

Sound quality

Like other headphone brands, you can expect different Bose headphones to have different sound qualities. The unifying factor, however, is that all Bose audio devices are rooted in psychoacoustics.

Psychoacoustics deals with the human perception of sound. This is not only influenced by a sound coming directly from an audio source but also how sound is reflected off other objects or structures in a room. There’s also another aspect to this that deals with how sounds produce a psychological response in the brain.

According to Dr. Bose, the performance of an audio system or device needn’t be based on “circuit parameters”, but on the human mind.

This is often a point of contention for audiophiles and is also probably why it’s difficult to find technical specs on sound output for Bose devices.

The important thing to remember about Bose’s sound quality is that it’s not created for audiophiles or critical listening.

The Bose sound is typically V-shaped, with deeper lows and a significant midrange dip. It’s extensively processed to give a sense of a wide soundstage that basically blankets you with sound. It undoubtedly sounds fantastic to music lovers and casual listeners. But ultimately, it doesn’t have the level of detail and accuracy required to deliver realistic reproductions of original recordings that audiophiles look for.

The lack of high-quality audio codecs also proves this, as most Bose headphones only use SBC and AAC codecs. Both of these only support bitrates of 256 to 320 kbps, which is nowhere near audiophile quality.

Bose’s signature sound is also a result of their volume-optimized Active EQ. It boosts higher and lower frequencies as needed, whenever you turn the volume up or down. This means that your audio will always sound balanced no matter the volume.

Battery life

Bose products are generally lifestyle-oriented and focus a lot on improving people’s everyday lives. This often means having wireless audio gear that’s easy to bring around. As such, battery life is an essential factor to consider.

Keep in mind that battery life differs in headphones and earbuds.

Headphones typically have a more robust battery life that can give you as much as 20-25 hours of wireless use on a single charge. In wired mode, some can deliver as much as 40 hours of playback with ANC. Most Bose headphones also come with a quick charge function, which gives you up to 2-3 hours of playback on a 15-minute charge.

Earbuds, on the other hand, have a shorter battery life of 5-8 hours. Although when combined with the charging case, they can last much longer. Like headphones, earbuds also come with a quick charge function, but these work at slightly slower rates than headphones. For instance, some earbuds require at least a 30-minute charge to deliver 3 hours of playback.

8 Best Bose Headphones in 2022

Bose QuietComfort 45

Best Overall
Bose QuietComfort 45 (From:Amazon).
Close look at Bose QuietComfort 45 (From: Amazon)

Key features

  • Form Factor: Over-ear
  • ANC: Yes, adjustable
  • Ambient Mode: Yes
  • Battery Life: 24 hours
  • Bluetooth Version: 5.1
  • IP Rating: N/A
  • Companion App: Bose Music
  • Touch Controls: No

The Bose QuietComfort 45 headphones deliver Bose’s best noise-canceling experience yet with a balance of noise reduction, sound quality, and comfort. Released in 2021, these headphones feature their signature comfortable fit, improved noise cancellation, improved voice pick-up, and longer battery life, making them our top pick overall.

The built-in Acoustic Noise Canceling™ technology comes with two modes – Quiet and Aware. The former filters out unwanted sound for better sound quality, and the latter lets the ambient sound come through so that you can tune into your surroundings as needed.

The headphones have a bright yet bassy sound signature enhanced by a couple of features. The TriPort acoustic architecture, for instance, makes use of ear cup vents to increase acoustic volume for fuller-sounding audio. The volume-optimized Active EQ also maintains a good balance of frequencies, giving your music greater clarity regardless of volume level.

Better audio quality is also extended to voice calls with a noise-rejecting mic system. This features an additional external mic that isolates your voice even more so that you can be heard even in windy outdoor conditions.

Build-wise, the Bose QuietComfort 45 headphones are durable without sacrificing comfort. The impact-resistant headband is reinforced with glass-filled nylon and metal hinges to endure daily wear and tear. You also have smooth, plush leather ear pads that not only deliver hours of comfort but also create a good seal over the ears that enhances the effect of the ANC.

The headphones have button controls on both ear cups, making the headphones easy to operate. There are dedicated volume buttons, a Bluetooth button, a Multifunction button for music playback and calls, and an Action button for the ANC.

Lastly, the QC45 headphones feature a long-lasting battery that provides 24 hours of playback on a single charge. It’s enough for long-haul flights or workdays that just never seem to end. A quick charge function delivers 3 hours of playback on a 15-minute charge, ensuring you won’t have to go too long without the comfort of your favorite music.

The Aware mode on the Bose QC45 headphones is generally a nice feature to have. However, in some instances, it tends to amplify certain sounds in a way that makes them sound harsher or sharper than if you weren’t wearing the headphones. So, this may be off-putting for folks who are sensitive to certain sounds like sirens or car horns.

Another drawback is that there’s no way to tweak the amount of noise reduction you get from the full noise canceling mode and Aware Mode. You can only switch between the two, making it a choice between not hearing anything or hearing everything.

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Bose 700

Strong Runner-Up
Bose 700.jpg
Close look at Bose 700 (From: Amazon)

Key features

  • Form Factor: Over-ear
  • ANC: Yes, adjustable
  • Ambient Mode: Yes
  • Battery Life: 20 hours
  • Bluetooth Version: 5.1
  • IP Rating: IPX4
  • Companion App: Bose Music
  • Touch Controls: Yes

The Bose 700 headphones have a great sound quality and flexible ANC features. They’ve even made it to the top spot on our most durable headphones list. However, they have shorter battery life and a slightly heavier build than the QC45, making them our runner-up pick for the best Bose headphones.

These headphones have a warm and bassy sound signature and a crisp, detailed quality that comes through at any volume. An 11-level ANC feature allows you to perfect your listening experience even further on the Bose Music app. This lets you tailor your audio with varying levels of noise reduction so that your music always sounds good no matter how loud your environment is.

Moreover, an adaptive mic system makes use of 8 mics to give you clearer calls. Of those 8 mics, 6 are geared towards blocking out noise so that you won’t struggle to hear callers, and 4 are dedicated to making sure your voice comes across clearly. This system also integrates a voice control function for hands-free access to your phone’s voice assistant.

Users get a mix of touch controls and buttons on the Bose 700s. The headphones feature 3 buttons on the earcups – the Power button, voice assistant button, and Noise Control button. Other functions for music playback, volume adjustment, and calls are all done via gestures on the ear cup touchpad.

Build-wise, the Bose 700 headphones are supremely comfortable. The over-ear configuration has slightly tilted ear cups, designed to accommodate the natural anatomy of the head and ears. They also come with super-soft protein leather cushions and a steel headband with silicone padding on the underside. Together, they ensure long-lasting comfort.

Lastly, you have a lithium-ion battery that gives you up to 20 hours of use on a single charge. If you’re the type that always forgets to charge their headphones, you’ll be glad to know that you can get a decent 3.5 hours of playback on just a quick 15-minute charge.

The Bose 700 headphones come with voice prompts and sound effects for certain button actions. The problem is that they sound off at max volume with no option to turn them down, and that can get annoying really fast. Though you can shut off voice prompts on the Bose app, you can’t do the same for the sound effects.

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Bose SoundSport Wireless

Best Budget
SoundSport Wireless Headphones (From:Bose).
Close look at SoundSport Wireless Headphones (From: Amazon)

Key features

  • Form Factor: In-ear w/ neckband
  • ANC: No
  • Ambient Mode: No
  • Battery Life: 6 hours
  • Bluetooth Version: 4.2
  • IP Rating: IPX4
  • Companion App: Bose Connect
  • Touch Controls: No

We all know that Bose headphones don’t come cheap. But if you really want that Bose brand without hurting your wallet that much, the Bose SoundSport Wireless is for you. These are one of their more affordable options and come with decent specs and features.

Enjoy hassle-free workouts with earbuds designed to keep up with you. With an IPX4 water-resistant rating, they’re guaranteed safe from rain and sweat. They’re even outfitted with a hydrophobic cloth material to make sure sensitive internal circuitry stays dry.

A discreet neckband keeps the earbuds secure while lessening the chances of accidental snags or tangling. The neckband is also where you’ll find an in-line mic and remote, which conveniently houses the volume and multifunction buttons for music and calls.

The Bose SoundSport Wireless earbuds come with pretty decent audio quality, thanks to Bose’s Active EQ. This is made even better by Bose’s signature StayHear+ Sport ear tips. These washable silicone ear tips have “wings” that support and secure the buds in place, and are specially designed for runners.

The ear tips also gently seal the ear canals for better sound through passive noise isolation. Every box comes with 3 extra ear tips, so you won’t have a problem finding a pair that fits.

Battery life is quite good on these earbuds. A full charge amounts to 6 hours of playback, and it also has a quick charge function that gives you 1 hour of playback from a 15-minute charge.

Last but not least, if you’ve been known to misplace an earbud or two, you’ll be glad to know that Bose has partnered up with Tile. This gives you the option to register and track your audio device through the Bose Connect app, so that you’ll never feel the pain of losing another pair of earbuds again.

Instead of a charging case, the SoundSport Wireless earbuds use a USB charging cable, which can make recharging a hassle if you’re outside. They also don’t function while charging, so if your battery runs out during a call, you’ll have to wait a bit before you can use the earbuds again.

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Bose Sport Open Earbuds

Best for Outdoor Workouts
Bose Sport Open Earbuds (From:Amazon).
Close look at Bose Sport Open Earbuds (From: Amazon)

Key features

  • Form Factor: True wireless
  • ANC: No
  • Ambient Mode: No
  • Battery Life: 8 hours
  • Bluetooth Version: 5.1
  • IP Rating: IPX4
  • Companion App: Bose Connect
  • Touch Controls: Yes

The Bose Sport Open Earbuds feature a unique open-ear configuration that allows you to enjoy your music while staying keenly aware of what’s happening around you. This makes them a great choice for those who enjoy exercising in the urban outdoors.

These earbuds sit slightly over and above the ear canal, in contrast to bone conduction headphones that sit over the cheekbones. They also utilize ordinary speakers to convey music instead of bone conduction headphones’ vibrations, making them more susceptible to sound leakage.

With Bose’s OpenAudio™ technology, all sound is directed towards your ears. And with 16mm drivers, you get a great bass response and natural-sounding audio minus the vibrations.

Whether you’re going for a leisurely jog or a heart-thumping workout, these earbuds are made to stay in place. The molded design of the ear hooks mimics our ear contours for a snug fit, and a matte finish provides added grip for stability. You needn’t worry about rain or sweat either, thanks to an industrial-grade thermoplastic casing that’s IPX4 water-resistant.

A long-lasting battery provides up to 8 hours of playback on one full charge. Forgot to charge your earbuds? No worries, it only takes 2 hours to fully charge them up, or 30 minutes for 3 hours of playback – long enough for an entire workout routine.

Hands-free functionality is key on ​​the Bose Sport Open Earbuds. An advanced mic system isolates your voice from background noise so you can enjoy clearer calls and access your voice assistant without a hitch. Those who prefer a more tactile approach can use the buttons on both earbuds. The right button controls playback and calls, and the left button is for voice control.

The earbuds do come with a carrying case, but unfortunately, you can’t charge your earbuds with it. You’ll need a separate charging base that needs to be plugged in via a USB cable. It definitely doesn’t make on-the-go charging convenient, but it’s not a total dealbreaker.

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Bose QC35 ii Gaming

Best for Gaming
Bose QC35 ii Gaming (From:Amazon).
Close look at Bose QC35 ii Gaming (From: Amazon)

Key features

  • Form Factor: Over-ear
  • ANC: Yes, adjustable
  • Ambient Mode: No
  • Battery Life: 20 hours (wireless), 40 hours (wired)
  • Bluetooth Version: 4.2
  • IP Rating: N/A
  • Companion App: Bose Connect
  • Touch Controls: No

To be fair, Bose doesn’t exactly have a gaming line, which naturally places the Bose QC35 II Gaming headset at number one for gaming. Nevertheless, the headphones come with decent specs that are worth checking out. The QC35 II is also the official gaming headset of LoL Esports Global Events and is compatible with PC, consoles, and mobile devices.

These 2-in-1 gaming and lifestyle headphones meet all the requirements for a satisfying gaming and music listening experience.

They make use of Bose’s Acoustic Noise Canceling™ technology, which combines the benefits of both active and passive noise cancellation. This ensures you won’t miss out on crucial details in your music or gameplay. You also have Bose’s signature volume-optimized Active EQ, which balances out high and low frequencies for a better sound at any volume.

You can choose from 3 ANC modes from the Bose Connect app, which is helpful when you need more noise reduction for better focus. This feature can easily be turned on or off via a dedicated ANC button on the side of the ear cup. Other button controls include volume buttons, a multifunction button for music and calls, an action button for voice assistant access.

When gaming, you can simply plug in the detachable boom mic that comes with the headphones. The mic is Discord and TeamSpeak-certified and equipped with noise-rejecting technology for clear communications. It’s designed with the most optimal measurements for accurate voice pick-up and comes with an in-line mute button.

Another bonus for gamers is a PC desktop controller. It has a dial for adjusting the master volume on apps you’re currently using. There’s also a button that offers 4 levels of mic monitoring – a handy feature that keeps your voice level in check, especially during heated gaming moments.

The QC35 II Gaming headset is built to last as long as you can with a heavy-duty battery and quick charge function that gives you 5 hours of use on a 15-minute charge. They’re built using glass-filled nylon and feel lightweight even after extended use. The suede-lined headband offers better grip and stability, and soft leather cushions give you long-lasting comfort.

The QC35 II is a newer version of the QC35 Series 1 headphones, which was released in 2016. The upgraded QC35 II features a lighter build, voice control support, a mute button, and added support for Xbox and Playstation consoles.

Unfortunately, Bluetooth connectivity isn’t the best on this headset and tends to disconnect more frequently from iOS devices. Additionally, when you plug in the boom mic, you lose Bluetooth functionality altogether.

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Bose Sport Earbuds

Best for Sports
Bose Sport Earbuds (From:Amazon).
Close look at Bose Sport Earbuds (From: Amazon)

Key features

  • Form Factor: True wireless
  • ANC: No
  • Ambient Mode: No
  • Battery Life: 5 hours
  • Bluetooth Version: 5.1
  • IP Rating: IPX4
  • Companion App: Bose Music
  • Touch Controls: Yes

The Bose Sport Earbuds feature a sleek, durable design, good mic noise reduction, and sturdy ear tips that offer more stability, making them ideal for sports and athletes.

One of the highlights of these earbuds is the StayHear™ Max tips. These silicone ear tips have a wide, umbrella-type design that provides a tight seal in the ear canal for better audio and passive noise reduction.

The ear tip “wings” fit snugly within the concha, evenly distributing pressure across the ear so that you stay comfortable throughout your workout. The silicone material also offers good grip, so they stay securely in place regardless of how much you move.

These earbuds come with a Spotify Tap™ feature that you can activate through the Bose Music app. This gives you quick access to all your workout playlists with a simple double-tap gesture on the left earbud. On the other hand, all other functions for ​​music playback, volume adjustment, calls, and voice assistant activation can be done on the right earbud using similar tap and swipe gestures.

Sound-wise, Bose’s Active EQ delivers good enough audio quality to energize you through tough workouts. And with an IPX4 water-resistant rating, you can sweat it out without worrying about damaging your earbuds. Just remember not to take them in the shower with you afterward.

If you need to take calls, you’re well-equipped to do so. The Bose Sport Earbuds has a dual-microphone array that works to isolate your voice, making it sound clearer during calls regardless of whether you’re in a noisy gym or in the bustling outdoors.

Lastly, the lithium-ion battery keeps your earbuds going for up to 5 hours on a full charge. If you’re out of juice, just pop them into the charging case for 15 minutes for an additional 2 hours of playback. All in all, a fully-charged case can give you up to 10 hours of use.

If you’re deciding between the Sports Earbuds and the SoundSport Wireless, there are small differences to keep in mind. Aside from being cheaper, the latter has a slightly longer battery life, supports NFC connectivity, and has an in-line remote. On the other hand, the Sport Earbuds has touch controls, a charging case, and uses a newer Bluetooth version.

However, although the mic array does a good job at enhancing voice quality, the earbuds themselves fall short when it comes to suppressing background noise due to the lack of ANC.

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Bose Frames Tempo

Most Unique
Bose Frames Tempo (From:Amazon).
Close look at Bose Frames Tempo (From: Amazon)

Key features

  • Form Factor: Open ear
  • ANC: No
  • Ambient Mode: No
  • Battery Life: 8 hours
  • Bluetooth Version: 5.1
  • IP Rating: IPX4
  • Companion App: Bose Music
  • Touch Controls: Yes

If you’re looking for something a little more unconventional, the Bose Frames Tempo are a good option. These audio sunglasses are decked out with high-end polarized lenses and open-ear headphones that are great for outdoor sports.

The Bose Frames Tempo feature two built-in speakers in the temple area of the glasses, designed to direct audio straight to your ears. With Bose’s OpenAudio™ technology and Active EQ, you get powerful sound quality that rivals other audio sunglasses in the market. Even when biking at high speeds, your music comes through loud and clear.

Check out our list of the top 8 headphones for cycling, along with buying tips on how to choose the best one for you.

As for functionality, the sunglasses make use of button and touch controls. The touch surface lets you adjust volume levels and access your voice assistant with swiping gestures. And the button lets you manage calls and media playback.

These high-performance sunglasses combine comfort and durability, making them ideal for multi-sport use. They have a TR90 nylon frame, which is a thermoplastic material that’s extremely lightweight, flexible, and impact-resistant. The textured finish combined with silicone nose pads and temple grips, keeps the glasses from slipping off if you’re running or biking.

The Bose Frames Tempo have Polycarbonate Mirrored Black polarized lenses with 12% VLT, which is perfect for strong sunlight. They’re scratch and shatter-resistant and prescription ready.

Additionally, there are three other types of interchangeable lenses to choose from:

  • Road Orange (20% VLT): Reduces glare; ideal for open road activities like running or biking.
  • Trail Blue (28% VLT): Enhances filtered light in shaded areas; ideal for hiking, trail running, and mountain biking.
  • Twilight Yellow (77% VLT): Brightens low light areas; ideal for early morning activities, or foggy and cloudy weather.

Speaking of weather, that won’t be an issue either because these sport sunglasses are IPX4 water-resistant. They’re even outfitted with a mesh-type material that keeps debris and moisture from getting inside ports.

However, these audio sunglasses don’t come with a quick charge function, so you’ll have to remember to charge them up before you head out. The good thing is that the battery provides up to 8 hours of use on a full charge, which is more than enough to get you through whatever activities you have for the day.

Though the Bose Frames Tempo are indeed lightweight and comfortable, they can feel a tad tight on people with larger heads. The bulky appearance of the temples may also not be aesthetically appealing for some folks.

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Bose QuietComfort Earbuds

Best All-rounder Earbuds
Close look at Bose QuietComfort Earbuds (From: Amazon)
Close look at Bose QuietComfort Earbuds (From: Amazon)

Key features

  • Form Factor: True wireless
  • ANC: Yes
  • Ambient Mode: Yes
  • Battery Life: 6 hours
  • Bluetooth Version: 5.1
  • IP Rating: IPX4
  • Companion App: Bose Music
  • Touch Controls: Yes

Bose has a plethora of wireless earbuds available. However, those looking for something they can use in different situations should check out the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds. These buds offer great sound quality, excellent ANC features and durability, as well as decent battery life.

Like all other Bose headphones, the QuietComfort Earbuds have volume-optimized Active EQ, which balances out high and low frequencies so that they sound consistent at any volume.

Bose’s Acoustic Noise Canceling™ technology also blurs away ambient noise with the help of 4 noise-rejecting mics embedded in the buds. These mics also work to keep all your conversations clear, no matter where you are.

The ANC on these earbuds comes in two modes – Quiet Mode and Aware Mode. Quiet Mode completely blocks out noise during moments you need to be fully focused. Aware Mode filters in ambient sounds along with your music, which helps you stay mindful while commuting, exercising outdoors, or traveling.

And with ActiveSense™ technology, any ambient sounds that come off too loud are automatically toned down to a less disruptive level.

Like the Bose Sport Earbuds, these earbuds feature the StayHear™ Max tips for better passive and active noise cancellation. They also have a silicone finish which provides better grip and a more secure fit. And since the buds are also IPX4 water and sweat-resistant, they’re built to survive a quick run in light rain.

The Bose QuietComfort Earbuds are completely touch-operated. The left earbud lets you access the ANC function and a shortcut, which you can customize in the Bose Music app. And the right earbud is for media playback, volume adjustment, calls, and voice assistant access.

The rechargeable lithium-ion battery holds enough juice for 6 hours of use, which is decent enough to get you through the workday or a workout. A fully-charged case, however, will get you up to 12 hours of use. The earbuds also support wireless charging on a Qi-compatible 3rd-party wireless charger, if you happen to have one lying around.

The Bose Sport Earbuds and the QuietComfort Earbuds are quite similar in appearance and often get compared. The main difference is that the latter offers better sound quality, an ANC function, and wireless charging. The actual buds and case are also larger than the Sport Earbuds, and overall, they’re more expensive.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of gestures to familiarize yourself with and it’ll take time getting used to them if you’re new to touch control earbuds. As expected, the touch surface also occupies a large portion of the earbuds and is quite sensitive. So, you could accidentally drop a call or skip a track while adjusting the position of the earbuds, or if you’re naturally heavy-handed.

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