Become a MacRumors Supporter for $25/year with no ads, private forums, and more!
  • Did you order new AirTags? We've opened a dedicated AirTags forum.

Samtb

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Jan 6, 2013
1,445
23
Are active noise cancelling earphones good for trains and flights? Which ones are best at the best value?
 

Brenster

macrumors 6502a
Jul 7, 2008
719
619
Are active noise cancelling earphones good for trains and flights? Which ones are best at the best value?

In my experience they do a good job of blocking out ambient noise such as train & plane engines etc. Local noises - people talking right next to you etc - are audible but barely so. Depends on how good the noise cancellation tech is in each headset. Can wind up with the ambient noise in an open plan office being dialed down to virtually zero, terrifically isolating with just you and your music.

I've used the Bose over ear ones (QC15) and tried out their in ear ones - both worked really well and still provided good if not stellar music reproduction (classical, metal and 60s/70s pop/rock here). There is a hefty price tag attached to them though so def audition in person before committing to spending. Several other brands have NC headsets so worth checking out those as well.
 
Comment

ejisfun

macrumors regular
Jan 7, 2011
173
4
Here's gizmodo's write-up on the best noise-cancelling headphones.

Personally, I have the Bose QC15s. The main reason I got them is because they're insanely comfortable (I've worn them ~8 hours straight with no discomfort) and the noise canceling is unmatched. As Brenster said, noise-canceling head phones are very good with ambient noises - fans, engines, etc. - and decent with other noises.

I don't have an ear for "high quality music," but audiophiles wouldn't touch these headphones with a 5-foot pole, so I've heard. That being said, the sound quality is fantastic and you won't notice anything wrong if all you're listening to is standard mp3s from your iPhone/iPad.
 
Comment

darknyt

macrumors 6502a
Sep 17, 2009
603
94
Another vote for the QC-15's. I've had mine a couple years now and one of the best purchases I made for travel. I use them everyday on the train and several times a year on flights.

If you are going to be traveling often, I think these offer superior NC. They may not be the best acoustically or most accurate set.

I think you get what you pay for in this department. If you are only flying a couple times a year, they may be hard to justify, but if you use them often, you'll thank yourself and the incremental cost would be well worth it.
 
Comment

co22

macrumors member
Nov 1, 2011
48
0
Washington DC area
Cheaper options

I think you get what you pay for in this department. If you are only flying a couple times a year, they may be hard to justify, but if you use them often, you'll thank yourself and the incremental cost would be well worth it.

Agreed. You get what you pay for, but since I can't justify dropping $400 for a really good pair, I've found that there are reasonably good options in the $100 range. I personally recommend the JVC HANC250, but there are other decent noise canceling headphones to be had in that price range.
 
Comment

Tobster3

macrumors 6502
Jun 3, 2010
421
0
South Korea
Another vote for QC15s. I travel a lot, particularly long haul flights and the Bose QC15 have more than met my needs over the last few years. Just remember to pack a spare battery!
 
Comment

darknyt

macrumors 6502a
Sep 17, 2009
603
94
Another vote for QC15s. I travel a lot, particularly long haul flights and the Bose QC15 have more than met my needs over the last few years. Just remember to pack a spare battery!

I just happened to sit next to a fellow QC-15 user on my last long haul from Paris and he had run out and only brought a dead battery with him. I always pack a four-pack of AAAs so I had a spare for him. Very grateful chap. Come prepared.
 
Comment

Tobster3

macrumors 6502
Jun 3, 2010
421
0
South Korea
I just happened to sit next to a fellow QC-15 user on my last long haul from Paris and he had run out and only brought a dead battery with him. I always pack a four-pack of AAAs so I had a spare for him. Very grateful chap. Come prepared.

Man, you could have come in handy sitting next to me on a few flights over the years. :D
 
Comment
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.