These days, the need to go wireless can never be more apparent. Headphones in particular are increasingly zooming in that trajectory, a forward movement boosted by some companies choosing to eschew traditional headphone jacks on their smartphones.
With an increasingly wireless era comes an increasing number of wireless options. We'll look at two of the most attractive from the wireless headphones pile: the Bose QuietComfort 35 and the Beats Studio Wireless. So which one should you pick?
Beats Studio Wireless
Beats is quite possibly the most popular premium brand when it comes to headphones, at least in the mainstream space. Many critics, music producers, and sound engineers would certainly contest that, but the Beats range of headphones has maintained its steep popularity over the years, regardless.
The Beats Studio Wireless is a little hard to judge, simply because Beats, unlike other audio companies, traditionally doesn't release technical information and specifications for its headphones, which is surprising for a company selling heavily priced premium products.
That said, Beats says that its Studio Wireless headphones comes with its proprietary Beats Acoustic Engine, designed to create "the emotional experience that the music industry's greatest producers want you to feel."
The pair of cans features dual-mode Adaptive Noise Canceling, which allows users to cancel surrounding noise even when there's no music playing.
Often, however, Beats headphones are attacked for their purported overuse of marketing to sell sub-par products that only seem great. While that argument is rife for discussion, it does have a point: Beats headphones are marketed significantly, appearing in films, music videos, and even endorsed by musicians. But as always, advertising and real life are two very different things.
Case in point: the Beats Wireless Studio features thunderous bass and treble levels, a feature Beats headphones are largely known for. But for all its hype, reviews do point out a number of cons, arguing that the bass and treble are set at unnatural levels, which outputs a "thick sound," and that noise cancellation is sub-par.
Also another gut-punch is the battery life: just 12 hours when used over wireless; 20 when used with a 3.5mm headphone jack.
The Beats Wireless Studio retails for $379.95.
Bose QuietComfort 35
The Bose QuietComfort 35 is similar to the Beats Wireless Studio in a lot of ways, but it also isn't. For one, both headphones have active noise canceling, but while Beats' cans are met with lukewarm reception, nearly all critics hail the noise canceling on the Bose QuietComfort 35 as one of the best there is.
No surprise there — the Bose brand is synonymous with noise cancellation, and its QuietComfort 35 is no exception.
But more than sound quality, those looking to buy wireless headphones often overlook one crucial metric: battery life. With the Bose QuietComfort 35, that won't be an issue, since the company claims that the headphones can run without charge for up to 20 hours.
The only downside to the headphones is that there's no possible way to turn noise canceling off, which isn't great for situations where you still need to be aware of your surroundings, such as during driving or looking after a toddler.
In terms of sound quality, the Bose QuietComfort 35 has a wide and encompassing soundstage, despite being closed-back units. It lacks any hiss or white noise that may mangle with the sound.
Bose also uses a digital equalizer that tweaks the sound so not one aspect or element is overpowered at any volume. All in all, the QuietComfort 35 provides an accurate and smooth sound, a fairly neutral bass, and a detailed midrange and treble.
The Bose QuietComfort 35 retails for $349.95.
The clear winner is of course Bose's pair of cans. Not only is it almost unanimously revered by critics and audiophiles alike, it also offers better sound quality, better noise cancellation, and significantly better battery life at a lesser price than the Beats Studio Wireless.
Do you agree or disagree with the verdict? Feel free to sound off in the comments section below!