Bose QuietComfort 35 II – Bose is an absolute powerhouse in the noise-cancelling headphones business. The company is known not only for building headphones that sound great, but also for what many consider to be the best noise cancellation technology in the business.
At the top of the company’s totem pole is the Bose QuietComfort 35 II, but they’re not the only headphones on offer. Also on the list is the Bose QuietComfort 25 — which is a little cheaper, and not quite as high-quality.
But should you shell out the cash for the Bose QuietComfort 35 II, or should you save your cash and go for the Bose QuietComfort 25 instead? We put the two headphones head to head to find out.
The first thing you’ll notice about these headphones is their design, and they both look typically Bose. They feature a design that you could characterize as a little boring, being made largely of a solid, hard plastic and a minimalistic color-scheme. On the ear cups, you’ll find the necessary controls — like a power switch and an aux port. Because of their minimalistic look, you won’t get many other controls — but for the most part you probably won’t need them.
There is one major difference in the design between the QuietComfort 25 and the QuietComfort 35 II — the QC25 is wired, while the QC35 II is wireless. That could be a pretty important distinction to make — wireless headphones are normally a lot more convenient, while wired headphones tend to sound slightly better. We’ll dive into how they sound a little later, but for now know that if you’re looking for a pair of wireless headphones, then the QC 35 II is the way to go.
In general, these headphones tie in the design department. They look almost identical, with the only real difference being that one has a wire sticking out of it.
Both of these headphones have the word “comfort” in their name, so you should expect them to be pretty darn comfortable.
The headphones are specifically built for things like plane use, so you’ll want them to be comfortable for hours on end. Thanks to the ton of padding in both of their ear cups, and the fact that they clamp just hard enough to create a seal without clamping too hard, both the Bose QuietComfort 25 and the Bose QuietComfort 35 II feel great.
But what are the differences? Well, there aren’t many, at least when it comes to comfort.
When it comes to sound quality, they both offer a similar sound — but it’s not exactly the same. Both of the two headphones offer excellent bass response, which helps give things like kick drums and bass guitars a little extra oomph.
The midrange, again, is well-tuned. The headphones could definitely be described as warm, thanks to the little bump in the low-mids that they offer, while there are plenty of high-mids to give vocals and guitars a nice cut through the mix.
The main difference between the headphones comes from the high-end. Don’t get us wrong — the QuietComfort 35 II has a very present and crisp high-end, with plenty of clarity, but it’s hard to match the detail you’ll find in a pair of great wired headphones.
Then there’s the noise cancellation — and on both of these headphones, it’s phenomenal. Bose has long been hailed as offering the best noise cancellation on the market, and for good reason — it’s totally true. If you’re looking for a great pair of headphones to travel with or take on the train, then you can’t go wrong with either of these offerings.
Another major difference between these two headphones is that the QuietComfort 35 II offers support for Google Assistant or Siri. What that means is that you can say “OK Google” or “Hey Siri” to activate your digital assistant — which could be very helpful.
So which headset should you buy? Well, it’s pretty simple — if you like the idea of digital assistant support and a wireless experience, then the Bose QuietComfort 35 II is the way to go. It’s ultra high-quality, sound great, and is very comfortable. If, on the other hand, you don’t mind the wired headphones and could save a bit of cash, then the Bose QuietComfort 25 is an excellent choice.