Bose Quietcomfort 3

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by mrcourt123, Nov 29, 2010.

  1. mrcourt123 macrumors member

    Jan 16, 2008
    Looking for some objective reviews. Anything out there of comparable quality for under $350? Are these worth the money? I'm looking for something of very high quality with noise cancellation to drown out background noise around me in an office setting. Thanks.
  2. tannerpp macrumors newbie

    I have been a very happy owner of the Bose QC15 for the last 12 months - they strike a happy balance (for me) for noise cancellation (when on planes & trains), portability, sound and battery life. One thing I would say is that they are designed for isolating repeating mechanical noise rather than the human voice so try them in the store to see whether they meet your needs.

    If they do then a further advantage of the QC 15 is that you can remove the headphone lead very simply so you don't have any trailing wires.

    If they don't then try the B&W P5's which are "noise isolating" via their design rather than "noise cancelling" via their technology.
  3. fehhkk macrumors 6502a


    Jun 11, 2009
    Chicago, IL
    I've had the QC3s for around 3 years.

    Mostly used them at the office, and during flights. The noise cancellation is truly great; the airplane engine sounds are drowned away pretty effectively, so as background noises like fans, AC. Like you said, voices are mostly muted and feel as if they're farther away than they really are.

    If this is your main point of buying them, you might want to test the QC15 as well, since they are over the ear, therefore, have better noise reduction than the on-the-ear QC3s...

    The QC3s have good response, nice and tight bass, clear treble. The battery life is pretty good (they can last for up to a couple weeks if you use them, say, 1-2 hours per day).

    Only disadvantages are that if the battery runs out, you can't listen to anything (as expected). And, they're pretty pricey.
  4. Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Sunny Southern California
    Bose headphones are (arguably) by far one of the most over-priced and over-hyped headphones on the market. The noise canceling system degrades the SQ even further. I spent about a month researching headphones before making a purchase and ultimately buying the Beyerdynamic DT-770 pro headphones. They are absolutely amazing. However, they are closed, noise isolating headphones rather than noise canceling. If you are unfamiliar with the difference read this.

    For noise canceling you should check out the ATH-ANC7's. Great bang for your buck and under $350.
  5. DiamondGCoupe macrumors 6502

    Nov 12, 2007
    Worth it. Have had mine for over 3 years and none of the other brands compare in noise canceling quality.
  6. toxic, Nov 29, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2010

    toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    in the audio world, BOSE = Buy Other Sound Equipment. there is nothing more overpriced.

    edit: look here for options.
  7. lowcut80 macrumors newbie

    Dec 24, 2008
    I'm a professional sound engineer and have access to many high-end headphones all the time.
    I do own both 3 and 15.

    I totally agree that Bose stuffs are overpriced, however, these QC3 and QC15 are good products and do well what they should do, noise canceling.

    Try out before you buy it cause everyone has different preferences.

  8. Cartaphilus, Nov 30, 2010
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2010

    Cartaphilus macrumors 6502a

    Dec 24, 2007
    I found that the Bose noise-cancelling headphones are great at substantially depressing the perception of constant noise--like airplane hum, fans, and a crowd of voices. They are not, however, at least to my ears, at all effective in muting individual voices or any other sporadic sounds. So if you work in a boiler room atmosphere with lots of people all talking at once at similar loudness levels, I think you'll be happy with them. If, on the other hand, you work near a few people who talk on the phone, or to visitors from time to time, then I don't think noise-cancelling headphones are what you're looking for. I guess you understand the physics behind these things (or can easily find explanations), so they are intrinsically limited by their enabling technology.

    For myself, I found that other than on airplanes I prefer to use noise-isolating in-ear phones. The ones I have use a foam eartip which you compress between your thumb and finger, insert into the ear, and then allow to expand to fill the space and mechanically block the sound. The sound is transmitted by a tiny tube that runs through the center of the foam. I've found these to be highly effective at blocking sporadic or irregular noises, and especially voices. I think there is a wide selection of similar products available, but the ones that I have offer great sound quality as well as isolation, but again at a not insignificant price. I use the Etymotic ER-4P, with the foam, not the soft plastic, eartips; both are provided in the package.

    They also have the advantage of easy portability (my Bose headset is pretty bulky) and need no batteries.

    These are supposed to provide 42dB of attenuation, so if there's a phone you need to hear, you might need to buy a flashing light. :)
  9. celo48 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 9, 2010
    They will give the sound outside more than regular headphones because they are open-air headphones.

    They probably will not be as comfortable as the Bose you are thinking to buy.

    If you do not care about two things above, then buy these and save yourself some money too!

    They will KILL the Bose when it comes to sound which is to me the most important thing.

    I have the 60-80 and heard the 225. To me 60s are the best ones for your money.
  10. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    read the OP. he will be in an office setting, open headphones won't work.

    I personally prefer closed headphones over noise canceling...noises are muffled, there's no annoying buzz, and they're a lot cheaper. on the flip side, they can feel rather tight the first few days until they adjust to your head.
  11. jetblk328i macrumors 6502

    Apr 20, 2010
    They are pretty over-priced. Not bad headphones but far more expensive than they should be. With that said, if you want bose, save yourself some money and get the Around Ear ones. They leak out very little noise and sound ok.
  12. celo48 macrumors 6502a

    Apr 9, 2010
    If he has enough sound in the office where he wants noise canceling headphones, I am sure open air headphones would be fine at this office setting.
  13. PinkyMacGodess macrumors 601


    Mar 7, 2007
    Midwest America.
    I've got QC2's and they work well but I found out that Bose ticked off a lot of people because the build quality isn't very good. The hinges break after a few years (or sooner) and Bose won't replace them. Evidently that's why they came out with the QC15's.

    I like them. They aren't perfect but what could be in a plane. They do a very good job of killing sound and make it very hard to hear PA announcements and such. The over-the-ear design is probably more to blame for that.

    In an office, I'd tend to not do the over-the-ear version. My wife has the QC3's and says they don't work as well because they don't cover the ear. She got them for the rechargeable battery.

    Yes, Bose is expensive but their aviation headsets are killer. They know what they are doing with that product.

    EDIT: QC2/QC15 would be overkill. Have you thought about the in-the-ear type? I've got a pair that works well but I sweat and they pop out... Apple made a pair that seemed to be well constructed. Don't know if it's still available.
  14. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Aug 9, 2009
    Portland, OR
    My wife and I both have Bose QC2's which we use on commercial flights. They do a reasonable job, but they (like all Bose products) are only mid-fi sound quality.

    I also have a pair of etymotics in the ear headphones that are noise suppressing (not noise cancelling)... and they were also about $300. They are MUCH more quiet than the Bose... and MUCH higher sound quality. However, I use them much less than the Bose QC2s because I do not like the feeling of things inserted in my ear canals. I do understand that there are some new memory foam type ear ends that improve comfort... so I plan to try them.

    Regarding the rechargable battery of the CQ3's... that is exactly why I did not buy them. I would much rather use innexpensive, ubitquitous, and disposable AAA's than have to manage another rechargable battery that will always go dead at the worse possible time (when I am on a plane without an electrical outlet).

    Regarding their true Bose avaition headsets... I own 4 of them for my plane (at $950 each), and they are the absolute best aviation headsets available. I have to lift an earcup to hear if my engine is still running (just kidding... but they are really really good).

  15. wrkactjob macrumors 65816


    Feb 29, 2008
    I tried the Bose ("Highs and lows? must be Bose!") in a store today and was impressed by their noise cancelling ability. I take a daily train journey and find having used Handbrake to convert my Sopranos DVD collection the volume is waaay too low and background noise of the train (chug chug chug chug) intrudes.

    So while I appreciate that audiophiles will poo poo Bose I think for Trains Planes and Automobiles (which was a great movie and John Candy was a sweet and funny guy who I met once) they are a handy headphone.

    But I forgot to ask the salesman if they would fit the iPad and iPhone connection?....and can you swop out the presumably long lead for a shorter one?...anyone got either the QC3 or 15?

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