Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

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Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

The Bose QuietComfort Ultra Headphones mark a significant leap in audio quality and noise-canceling performance, establishing themselves as the brand’s most premium headphones to date. 

The Bose QuietComfort Ultra Headphones are the epitome of premium audio and noise-canceling excellence. They build on the strong legacy of their predecessors and offer a listening experience that is second to none. With cutting-edge features, a comfortable design, and the promise of exceptional noise cancelation, these headphones are a must-have for audiophiles and those who demand the best from their audio equipment. While the price may have gone up, the added value in terms of technology and performance makes them well worth the investment.

NEW Bose QuietComfort Ultra Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones with...
  • LEVELED-UP LISTENING: Bose QuietComfort Ultra Headphones with spatial audio give you an immersive experience that...
  • WORLD-CLASS NOISE CANCELLATION: These noise cancelling headphones feature Quiet Mode, Aware Mode and Immersion...
  • CRYSTAL CLEAR CALLS: Microphones focus on the sound of your voice and the noise cancelling headphones with mic...
  • ELEVATED DESIGN, LUXE COMFORT: Soft ear cushions hug your ears, the band spreads pressure evenly and elevated...
  • BLUETOOTH WIRELESS HEADPHONES: Advanced Bluetooth 5.3 offers connection within 30 feet of your device; SimpleSync...

Taking over from the acclaimed Bose 700, the QuietComfort Ultra headphones come with a higher price tag of $429, reflecting the premium quality and enhanced features they offer.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra: Video Review

SpecsBose QuietComfort Ultra
BluetoothBluetooth 5.3
Bluetooth Range10m
Wireless ConnectivityBluetooth, A2DP Bluetooth Audio Streaming, HFP Bluetooth,
AVRCP Bluetooth, Bluetooth Low Energy
MicrophonesBuilt-in Microphone
Noise CancellingYes
Noise Control TypeActive Noise Cancelling, Echo Reduction, Adjustable Noise Cancelling
Audio cable includedYes
Battery Life24 hours
Battery Charge Time3 hours
Charging InterfaceUSB C PORT
Product MaterialPlastic, Aluminum, Leather (Protein)
Headphone Dimensions2 x 5.5 x 7.7 inches
Headphone weight0.56 lb
Bose AppBose Music App

Bose QuietComfort Ultra: Design

The Bose QuietComfort Ultra headphones blending the sharp aesthetics of the QC700 with the comfortable design of the QC45.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

The construction of the QC Ultra is both durable and elegant, with most of the headphones crafted from sturdy aluminum. The premium leather that wraps around the headband and earcups adds an extra layer of comfort and sophistication. The padded headband ensures that you can wear these headphones for extended periods without discomfort. Every detail has been carefully considered, from the accented yokes to the matte finish and the numerous microphone holes, giving the headphones a sleek and modern look.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brandThe Bose QuietComfort Ultra headphones are designed for on-the-go use, and their folding mechanism allows them to fit snugly into a rigid oval zipper pouch. 

The left earcup is equipped with a 2.5mm headphone jack and a USB-C input for convenient charging. On the right earcup, you’ll find a connection button and a control button that provides easy access to various functions.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

The right earcup is home to a range of controls that enhance the user experience. A short press of the control button functions as a pause/play toggle, while a long press opens up a customizable carousel of settings that can be configured using the Bose app. This intuitive design makes it easy to control your music and settings without fumbling with your device.

The capacitive volume rail, a raised strip on the right earcup, offers a tactile and responsive volume control. 

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

Wear detection is a welcome feature, allowing the headphones to automatically pause playback when you take them off and resume when you put them back on. This thoughtful touch enhances the overall user experience, ensuring that you can seamlessly transition between listening and interacting with your surroundings.

The advanced microphone array on the Bose QuietComfort Ultra headphones sets a new standard for speech recognition and vocal capture. Whether you’re using a digital assistant like Alexa or Google Assistant, these headphones respond instantly to wake-word phrases, and voice commands are executed with remarkable speed and accuracy.

Connections

The Bose QuietComfort Ultra headphones use Bluetooth 5.3 and multipoint support, allowing users to connect to multiple devices at the same time.

Whether you’re pairing them with your MacBook Pro, iPhone, or Google Pixel, you can effortlessly maintain two connections in parallel through the Multipoint feature. This means you can seamlessly switch between your devices without the hassle of re-pairing, offering a convenient and flexible user experience.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

For those who prefer a wired connection, the included mini-jack cable provides the option to connect to analog sound sources. This versatility is a notable advantage, allowing you to connect to a range of audio equipment. Notably, even with an analog connection, both the noise-canceling and aware mode features remain accessible. 

However, it’s essential to note that the headphones may not perform optimally when connected to high-impedance sources such as some smartphones or computer audio outputs. In such cases, the volume may be lower than desired, and users should consider alternative solutions to ensure the best audio experience.

Noise Cancelling 

The Bose QuietComfort Ultra headphones have once again raised the bar when it comes to noise canceling technology, showcasing their prowess in eliminating external disturbances. 

The QC Ultra Headphones proved their mettle by completely neutralizing intrusive noises such as the shrill screeching of trams, the cacophony of stone saws during road construction work, office chatter, the hum of vacuum cleaners, and even the jubilant screams from a nearby playground. What’s remarkable is that these headphones not only eliminated these noises but also reduced them to barely perceptible levels, all while allowing users to enjoy their music without interruption. In a head-to-head comparison with the Apple AirPods Max, the Bose Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) technology demonstrated even greater effectiveness. This remarkable noise-cancelling capability also extends to the transparency mode, where the Bose ANC shines, allowing you to maintain awareness of your surroundings while still enjoying your content.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

The Bose Music app enhances the user experience by providing access to various modes, including the highly versatile aware mode. This mode offers ten levels of adjustment, allowing you to fine-tune how much of your environment you want to hear. This feature is particularly valuable in situations like road traffic, where it’s essential to maintain awareness of your surroundings.

The Bose Music app goes beyond audio enhancements, offering a unique feature known as Simple Sync. This feature caters to users who have a compatible Bose Soundbar with smart functionality. With Simple Sync, you can channel audio separately to your headphones and Soundbar. This means you can enjoy your audio at the volume and with the settings that you prefer on your headphones without affecting the Soundbar’s audio or anyone else in the room. Whether you want to hear it louder or quieter, you have complete control over your audio experience.

Spatial Audio

Bose takes the listening experience a step further with its proprietary spatial audio feature. This immersive sound experience evokes the sensation of Dolby Atmos, without the necessity for specific Atmos audio mixes.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

Furthermore, the QuietComfort Ultra Headphones also support head tracking, meaning the audio’s spatial location is maintained as you turn your head. For instance, if you tilt your head to the right, the audio signal shifts to the left on the same axis. This dynamic tracking proves immensely useful for radio plays or podcasts, as many find immersive audio for speech to be a more enjoyable and natural experience than traditional stereo listening.

Sound 

The Bose QuietComfort Ultra Headphones offer an impressive audio experience. While they share the same drivers as the Headphones 700, the Ultras bring refinements that result in a slightly cleaner and more revealing sound profile, making for a noteworthy step up in audio quality.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

One of the key contributors to this enhanced audio performance is a more powerful chipset, which brings improved digital processing capabilities to the table. The result is a sound that is not drastically different from the 700s but exhibits more nuance and depth, especially in the bass frequencies.

When the Immersive Audio mode is engaged, the sound quality is elevated, introducing an airier quality to the audio. The dynamic range is enhanced, vocals come to the forefront, and there’s an increased separation between instruments, with a touch more sparkle in the treble. This mode elevates the audio experience, making it more captivating and lively. Switching back to stereo mode may result in a perceptible reduction in vibrancy.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

The default sound profile of these headphones is well-balanced and no longer criticized for excessive bass emphasis, which was a concern in previous Bose models. This balanced sound profile allows these headphones to cater to a wide range of music genres, making them versatile for any music lover.

Microphone

In addition to the rich audio experience for music and entertainment, the Bose QuietComfort Ultra headphones also excel in telephony and audio calls. During our testing, these headphones proved to be a reliable and effective communication tool for everyday office use. The noise-canceling feature, even in the context of calls, played a significant role.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

Outgoing signals were impressively clear, and the noise suppression worked efficiently to ensure that the voice quality of your own voice came through with minimal interference, even on mobile phone connections. The headphones delivered excellent audio quality and speech intelligibility during video calls via platforms like Zoom and Google Meet, making them a valuable tool for professional and personal communication.

Battery life

Bose claims that these headphones can deliver up to 24 hours of continuous playback on a full charge. However, it’s important to note that enabling immersive audio modes, such as spatial audio, can reduce this estimate to approximately 18 hours.

While a 24-hour battery life is a respectable figure, it’s worth mentioning that some of its competitors in the market offer even longer endurance. For instance, the Sony WH-1000XM5 headphones are known to last for up to 30 hours with active noise cancelation (ANC) turned on, surpassing the QC Ultra in this department. Additionally, the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless headphones are notable for their exceptional battery life, offering up to a whopping 60 hours of ANC playback, which is significantly longer than what the QC Ultra provides.

Bose QuietComfort Ultra Review: The best headphones of the brand

Despite not leading the pack in battery life, the Bose QuietComfort Ultra headphones make up for it with a convenient quick charging feature. A 15-minute charge can provide up to 3 hours of playback. 

Bose QuietComfort Ultra: Conclusion

The Bose QuietComfort Ultra Headphones represent a remarkable fusion of audio excellence, cutting-edge noise-canceling technology, and user-friendly features. 

One of the standout features of the QC Ultra is its exceptional noise-canceling capability. Throughout a rigorous week-long test, these headphones proved their mettle by effectively eliminating or reducing a wide range of intrusive noises, from screeching trams to office chatter. 

The innovative aware mode adds an element of versatility, allowing you to stay connected to your surroundings when needed or switch to highly efficient noise canceling. The inclusion of spatial audio and head tracking, while not suited to every user, offers an immersive audio experience that’s particularly well-implemented and enjoyable for movie and gaming enthusiasts.

NEW Bose QuietComfort Ultra Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones with...
  • LEVELED-UP LISTENING: Bose QuietComfort Ultra Headphones with spatial audio give you an immersive experience that...
  • WORLD-CLASS NOISE CANCELLATION: These noise cancelling headphones feature Quiet Mode, Aware Mode and Immersion...
  • CRYSTAL CLEAR CALLS: Microphones focus on the sound of your voice and the noise cancelling headphones with mic...
  • ELEVATED DESIGN, LUXE COMFORT: Soft ear cushions hug your ears, the band spreads pressure evenly and elevated...
  • BLUETOOTH WIRELESS HEADPHONES: Advanced Bluetooth 5.3 offers connection within 30 feet of your device; SimpleSync...

Comfort is another hallmark of the QC Ultra headphones and you can wear them for long periods of time without discomfort. The touch-sensitive controls, along with the Bose Music app, enhance the user experience by providing convenient ways to manage settings, connect to various devices, and customize audio preferences.

On the downside, the battery life of these headphones, while respectable at up to 24 hours, doesn’t lead the industry. However, the QC Ultra redeems itself with quick charging, providing 3 hours of playback with just a 15-minute charge.

In essence, the Bose QuietComfort Ultra Headphones are an excellent choice for those seeking a well-rounded audio experience with top-tier noise canceling and comfort.

You can also check out the best-selling Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones on Amazon:

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