Bose QuietComfort 25 review: A traveller's companion

Over ear headphones you could spend a whole day wearing in quiet comfort

Bose QuietComfort 25
  • Bose QuietComfort 25
  • Bose QuietComfort 25
  • Bose QuietComfort 25
  • Expert Rating

    4.25 / 5

Pros

  • Active noise cancelling
  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable
  • Nice carry case

Cons

  • Interchangeable - not rechargeable - battery

Would you buy this?

Four hours into my flight and the faint hum of the plane's engine sounds more like a roar. It’s not the sound that’s driving me mad, but rather the feeling it will never stop. Ever.

Travelling is often marred by moments designed to increase stress levels. Heading home on a train packed with school kids who just can't keep the LOUD NOISES in too grinds my gears. If only you could shut the outside world out with the simple flick of a switch.

That’s the thought process behind Bose’s QuietComfort 25, the company’s revamped active noise cancelling headphones. Fingering the right over-ear cup reveals a small toggle. Push it and the headphones will cancel extraneous noises.

Or, based on our testing, most of them. Background noise from the office falls on deaf ears. Harsh strokes on a keyboard still chime through, as do ringing phones. Although they seem much further away, and we haven’t hit play on our tracklist yet.

The QuietComfort 25 take a single AAA battery, which Bose claims will last for 35 hours. We didn't change the battteries once during our one month testing period
The QuietComfort 25 take a single AAA battery, which Bose claims will last for 35 hours. We didn't change the battteries once during our one month testing period

Bose’s QuietComfort 25 are headphones of the over-ear variety. Large leatherette cups press against the scalp as a second defence to unwanted outside noise.

Bonding these leather cups together is a plastic band, which was chosen not for its premium feel, but because it’s light — wear-on-an-eight-hour-flight light. There’s no question Bose’s QuietComfort 25 are more comfortable than Marshall’s Monitors, Harmon Kardon’s CL and Sennheiser’s Momentum.

A clear soundstage is an opportune time to play music, and the QuietComfort 25 do Bose proud. These headphones adopt an agnostic approach to genres and play R&B and classical tunes with the same tact. Bass isn’t as pronounced as some alternatives, but the big cups ensure the headphones have a wide soundstage for that wondrous sense of dimension. In a nutshell: these headphones sound as good as they are comfortable and quiet.

Audiophiles might be able to nitpick slight variations in frequencies when they plot these QuietComfort’s alongside more expensive rivals, such as the Bowers and Wilkins P7, but these headphones are made for an entirely different person: the Nomad.

People on the go with plenty of commute time and a music library housed on your smartphone will relish the QuietComfort 25. The headphones are comfortable, musically proficient and, most impressively, deliver space to call your own at the flick of a switch.

Bose's QuietComfort 25 come with one 3.5mm audio cable that has an in-line microphone and volume keys compatible with Apple iOS devices.
Bose's QuietComfort 25 come with one 3.5mm audio cable that has an in-line microphone and volume keys compatible with Apple iOS devices.
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