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Bose QuietComfort 45 Short Review

  • Design: Closed-back, Over ear. 
  • Noise Control: Noise Cancellation
  • Frequency Response: 80 Hz – 30 kHz.
  • Connectivity:  Wireless / Wired
  • Battery Life: Up to 22 h. 
  • Weight: 15.5 ounces. 
  • Price: $329

When the topic of active noise-canceling (ANC) headphones arises, the majority of individuals tend to associate them with various versions of Bose’s headphones. And while Bose offers many great options with Superb ANC, I believe the QC45 takes the cake. 

However, these headphones are not all about just noise cancellation. They also excel at comfort, durability and sound quality, making them one of the most complete and balanced options available in the market as of now. 

If we had to find a flaw on these headphones, we’d have to mention its microphone. While it is not the worst mic to ever exist, its performance is just passable, especially after considering Bose’s reputation for audio quality.

And while most built-in microphones do a decent job, whatever brand we’re talking about, they can’t quite compete with the clarity and performance of a dedicated boom microphone, so keep that in mind. 

Are They Worth It?

The Bose QuietComfort 45 serves as a capable follow-up to Bose’s 2019 QuietComfort 35 II, and even though they lack some of the features seen in the more recent Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700, they still represent a very solid alternative in 2023. 

While the QC45 falls short in some aspects, mainly regarding its audio performance not reaching an audiophile-grade, they make up for it with their long-term comfort, user-friendly design, and noise-cancelling features, earning them a spot on the list of best headphones for streamers. 

The ear cups come in a decent size, and the headset maintains a reasonable weight of 240 grams, effectively distributing its load to prevent significant fatigue during extended use. 

The synthetic leather ear pads on the other side, offer adequate isolation thanks to their dense construction, and the headband also incorporates some top padding for added comfort, which is one you’re not likely to find in any other pair of headphones.

And when it comes to physical updates, the Bose QuietComfort 45 boasts a subtle redesign compared to its predecessor, the Bose QuietComfort 35 II. The distinctive perforations on the rear of the ear cups have been replaced, creating a smoother outer plastic surface. 

Although the headphones still incorporate multiple microphones for active noise canceling, their presence is now more discreet than in the previous model.

Bose QuietComfort 45’s Noise Cancellation

It is safe to say that the QuietComfort 45 headphones solidify Bose’s position as a leader in active noise cancellation, outperforming all of their close competitors such as the $549 AirPods Max, the $349 Sony WH-1000XM4.

However, despite arguably being the best of the best in terms of noise cancellation, as we mentioned earlier, the QC 45 headphones may not be the top choice when it comes to the audio quality expected from a $300+ headphones, so if you’re an audiophile who doesn’t really prioritize noise cancellation properties, you may want to look for other options, then Sony’s WH-1000XM4 premium sound quality may be the best fit for you. This means that this might not be the best headset for streamers.

It impressively reduces mid and high-frequency noises, a feat that many headsets struggle to accomplish. What does this mean? Well, it means that it can reduce blaring sounds, like the one coming from a plane’s engine for example, allowing your ears to catch only ⅛ of it, which translates to less than 20 dB. Impressive right?  

How to Connect the Bose QuietComfort 45?

The Bose QuietComfort 45 links to your audio source using the built-in Bluetooth 5.1 technology within the ear cups. Alternatively, you can also use them via wired connection using the provided 2.5-to-3.5mm TRS cable. 

While the cable is relatively short as it is just 2.1 feet long, with the wireless option you can venture up to 3.2 feet away from your source device, at least before experiencing any connection interruptions of course.

If you were expecting Bose’s latest release to include advanced Bluetooth codecs like aptX or high-bitrate options, you might find the QC 45’s lack of support disappointing. However, it’s worth noting that SBC and AAC, the supported codecs, have seen significant improvements over the years and shouldn’t be underestimated.

So, Should You Buy the Bose QuietComfort 45?

If you truly want to know if Bose’s QC45 are the right fit, here’s a simple question that, after answered, will help you determine whether yes or no:

Is noise cancellation and comfort above sound quality for you? 

If the answer is yes, then you cannot go wrong with the QuietComfort 45. On the other hand, if the answer is no, you may want to continue reading our reviews until you find an option that better fits your needs.

And although the Bose QC45 headphones don’t boast the lengthiest battery life available on the market, they still offer a significantly longer runtime than the majority of other noise-cancelling headphones with approximately 25 hours of use on a single charge, giving them another point in favor for you to keep in your considerations. 

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