The Bose QuietComfort 35 Series II wireless noise-canceling headphones are a mild refresh to the class-leading first generation. The latest iteration of Bose's range-topping headphones adds a dedicated button for activating the excellent Google Assistant.
The addition of support for the Google Assistant allows you to perform a plethora of tasks with the simple press of a button. This includes making calls, getting answers to random questions, and even controlling your connected appliances, among many others. Alternatively, you can program the button to adjust the level of noise cancellation via the Bose mobile app.
The Tech Specs That Set Them Apart
Save for the addition of the action button at the bottom of the left ear cup, the Bose QC35 Series II headphones look just like the Series I. The headset has the audio giant's signature understated looks, coupled with exceptional build quality.
The Series II headphones are available in silver and black just like the Series I. In case you find these color options a bit too dull, you can opt to fully customize the headset's colors for an extra $100. The custom-color option is available directly from Bose.
Bose has two microphones that are solely dedicated to tuning out noise for the QC35 headphones. They include an inner and outer unit that continuously track your surroundings, and they help the headset tune them out.
The headset's playback and volume controls are located on the right ear cup, as is the power button.
The companion app for the Bose QC35 Series II headphones has a sleek and intuitive interface. It allows users to manage the headset's device connections, change the functionality of its action button, keep an eye on its battery, and update its firmware.
The wireless connectivity options of the headset include Bluetooth and NFC. A standard audio cable is also included in the headset's retail package, as is an airline adapter and a carrying case.
Bose promises up to 20 hours of battery life in wireless mode on a single charge. If you opt to use the Series II in wired mode, you'll double its battery life. Topping up the battery of the headset takes place over a microUSB connection (a cable is included in the box).
What Happened When We Put Them to the Test
The QC35 Series II headphones look decidedly low-key in person, especially in the all-black color option we tested. Buyers looking for a bit more flash should definitely opt for the silver variant, or spend the extra cash to make their own color combination.
The headset's tactility is nothing short of excellent. Bose has used top-notch materials such as metal and Alcantara (commonly used in luxury cars, boats, and the like) when crafting the headphones, making them a pleasure to interact with.
Comfort-wise, the Bose QC35 is handily the best wireless over-ear headset in the business. Thanks to a combination of a lightweight body, exceptional adjustability, and excellent ear pads, the headphones, unlike most of their competitors, are perfect for long listening stints.
Real-life battery performance of the headset came pretty close to the manufacturer's claims. We easily got two full workdays of nonstop use with the QC35 Series II on a single charge at moderate volume, so we reckon that even heavy users will be pleased with its endurance.
The Noise-Canceling Feature Is the Best in the Business
are typically characterized by a fairly neutral, slightly soft sound signature, and the QC35 Series II is no exception. The headset delivers a stellar sound experience, regardless of the type of content we played on it.
The noise cancelation alone is hands-down the best in the business. It literally blocks the outside world from your ears, so it's handy for helping you focus at work, during your travels, or simply relaxing.
Final Thoughts: The Series II Are Worth the Upgrade
Two years after the first generation's debut, the Bose QC35 Series II are still the best noise-canceling headphones you can buy. They offer a blend of comfort, available features, and sound quality in a wireless package with exceptional battery life. Most importantly, they tune out ambient noise better than their rivals.
The QC35 Series II headphones retail for $349. The Series I is also available for $20 less, though we highly recommend that you spend the extra money on the refreshed variant. The addition of the action button and Google Assistant functionality make the small price bump well worth it.
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