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You knew it was coming, so lets get to it… Bose QC 35 II versus the Sony 1000XM2. These two are perhaps the most popular options right now when it comes to noise canceling headphones. And both of these headphones have their own strong and weak points. But more importantly, which is right for you? We’re about to find out, don’t forget to like comment and subscribe and you can watch both of these headphones individual reviews here after you’re done watching this video.
Both of these headphones retail for $350 and both of these headphones come in two color ways. The Bose QC35 II come in black and silver and the Sony 1000XM2 come in black and gold. And they both come included with a hard shell carrying case, a micro USB cable for charging, and an audio cable. The Sony 1000XM2 come included with an airplane adaptor, while Bose decided to leave out their plane adaptor for the Bose QC35 II. If you want to pick either of these headphones up I’ll have links in the description and I’ll keep them updated so you can’t the best deal possible.
Both of these headphones are relatively identical on the outside to their predecessors the Sony MDR-1000X and the Original Bose QC35. And just like before the Bose QC35 II have far superior build over the Sony 1000XM2. The panels on the Bose QC35 II are made out of glass filled nylon which are more durable and lighter than the plastic ones on the 1000XM2. The plastic panels on my 1000XM2 haven’t had the cracking issue that was fairly common on the 1000X but its still too early to tell if the cracking issue is gone. The plastic panels on the 1000XM2 are snapped into place while the panels on Bose QC35 II are screwed in so if you flex the headband on the Bose QC35 II theres really no squeaking or cracking and the panels stay in place better. Where as if you flex the headband on the 1000XM2 too much you risk the panels snapping out of place. Both of the headphones are using synthetic leather on the ear cups and headband and they both have plush padding. But the padding on the Bose QC35 II is just a little softer and it stays cooler for a little longer than the 1000XM2. The ear cups on the Bose QC35 II are also larger than the 1000XM2 so they encase your whole ear while the ear cups on the 1000XM2 might rest on your earlobes if you’ve got bigger ears. What this means is the Bose QC35 II have a far superior build quality and slightly better comfort over the Sony 1000XM2.
But like I’ve said before, the Sony 1000XM2 forego build quality in favor of features. First off, the 1000XM2 have a better battery life than the Bose QC35 II. The Sony 1000XM2 should last you a little more than 30 hours with noise cancelation on, while the Bose QC35 II have a battery life of 20 hours with noise cancelation on.
And they both have quick charging, if you plug in the 1000XM2 for 10 minutes you should get 70 minutes of playback time. But if you plugin the Bose QC35 II for 15 minutes you should get 2.5 and half hours of playback time.
Concerning sound quality, I prefer the 1000XM2 over the Bose QC35 II. The highs on the Sony don’t crash like they do on the Bose and theres much less distortion at higher volumes on the Sony. Although the Bose QC35 II have a little bit more depth, the bass just leave you hanging. Where as The 1000XM2 have clean bass and you can adjust their EQ through Sony’s headphones app. And you CAN’T do that with the Bose QC35 II unless you use a third party app.
If you’re debating between these two headphones chances are you’re mainly interested in the Active Noise Cancelation. And I’ve got to say, Sony has really improved their Active Noise Cancelation technology. When you activate the ANC on the Sony 1000XM2 you feel no cabin pressure on your ear drum and they don’t cause any head aches. And the 1000XM2 are also really good at rejecting wind noise. Where as if the microphones on the Bose QC35 II get hit by a little breeze you’re going to get some white noise. And I’ve been very vocal about this in the past but the ANC on Bose QC35 II have a lot of cabin pressure and cause headaches. And its just not me, I’ve passed the Bose QC35 II around to a few people and they all said they hurt. If ANC is on on the Bose QC35 II and you’re not playing music you’re going to hear a constant hissing sound where as with the 1000XM2 there isn’t but you’re still blocking out the sound. And when it comes to over all performance, the 1000Xm2 is better at blocking out more sound than the Bose QC35 II.
And the 1000XM2 also give you more control of your active noise cancelation settings thanks to their ambient sound feature. If you just want to block out everything you can just have your standard noise cancelation turned on. But if you set ambient sound to low the 1000XM2 will pump in some outside sound so you can be aware of whats going on around you if you’re walking in the city. They can also specifically only let in people’s voices. And if you want more ambient sound in you can just raise the ambient sound setting. And they can even adjust your ambient sound setting automatically depending on what you’re doing. With the Bose QC35 II you only have three options to choose from concerning your active noise cancellation. You can either choose from High, Low or OFF.
But the coolest feature the Sony 1000XM2 have that the Bose doesn’t is quick attention. If someone is talking to you while you’re playing music on the 1000XM2 you don’t have to take your headphones off. All you have to do is cover the touch pad on the right ear cup and the head phones will automatically lower the volume of your music and pump in all of the outside sound.
Where as with the Bose, if someone tries to talk to you, you have to take your headphones off. This isn’t as sleek as the Sony.
The only addition to the new Bose QC35 II is the new Action button on the left ear cup. And you can either have this button do one of two things. Either you can activate google assistant or toggle through your active noise cancelation settings. Like I said in my initial review, you can use google assistant with an iPhone, but its not as useful as it would be if you used it on an Android device. If you tap the action button once, google assistant will tell you the time and any notifications you might have. But if you press and hold the action button you can talk to google assistant.
And having the action button on the Bose QC35 II is useful if you’re a power user of google assistant. It really stream lines the process of talking to your assistant. And with the Bose QC35 II you can use the action button on the left to activate google assistant and you can use the multipurpose button on right to activate siri if you’re using an iPhone. So you get two assistants at your beck and call. And I like that cause sometimes google is better at more complicated questions than Siri.
And here are a few minor things to take into consideration. The Bose QC35 II can connect to two devices at the same time, so switching from your phone to your laptop like I always do is super easy. Where as the Sony 1000XM2 can only be connected to one device at a time so you cant just hot swap. And like I said in my initial review, premium head phones like the 1000XM2 should be able to connect to multiple devices at the same time. But, the Sony 1000XM2 have been updated with Aptx HD audio so the wireless audio quality is better than the Bose QC35 II when streaming off of the same device. And I’m not just saying that cause its on a spec sheet… you can really tell a difference.
So, if you’re trying to decide between the Bose QC35 II and the Sony 1000XM2… get the Bose if build quality and comfort are your top priorities. Even though the new action button is nice, its not a must have feature cause you can still just activate google assistant straight from your phone. But for everything else I would pick the Sony 1000XM2. They sound better, they have more features, they have a better battery life and the Sony headphones app gives you so much more control over them. Not to mention, the noise cancelation on the 1000XM2 is better than the Bose QC35 II. Theres no hissing and theres no cabin pressure… but they still manage to block out more sound. Remember, this isn’t a full review for either of these headphones I’m just trying to point out the most important differences between them so I can help you with your purchase decision. If you want to learn more about either of these headphones click or tap the icon on the top right to watch their full reviews.