Bowers and Wilkins P5's or Bose Quiet Comfort 15's

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Twowildman21, Dec 27, 2010.

  1. Twowildman21 macrumors member

    Jan 14, 2008
    Big debate between these 2 headsets. Wanted to hear some MacRumors community opinions. Thanks!
  2. toxic macrumors 68000

    Nov 9, 2008
    I'd venture a guess and say the B&Ws will be better... I'd buy it just for the build, if I were in the market for something like that.

    aren't they available at Apple Stores? just go to one and have a listen.
  3. jetblk328i macrumors 6502

    Apr 20, 2010
    Bowers if you care about sound quality and build quality. If you need sound isolation, go Bose.
  4. CaptainChunk macrumors 68020


    Apr 16, 2008
    Phoenix, AZ
    I can't say much about B&W's new headphones (haven't listened to them), but I'd also venture to say that the B&Ws will easily outclass the Boses.

    B&W is brand new to the headphones game, but if their Zeppelin iPod dock is any indication of how their new headphones sound, they should be a solid choice.

    Also keep in mind though that in this price bracket, there's a TON of competition from well-established headphone manufacturers. Sennheiser, AKG and Beyerdynamic, just to name a few.
  5. tannerpp macrumors newbie

    It all depends what you want - the Bose are great for Active Noise Cancellation in an environment where there is repeating background noise, such as a plane. Their enclosed design also helps. The b&w are great for noise isolation due to their construction but are not noise cancelling.

    As ever it's a personal thing - try before you buy and everyone will have different requirements, tastes and preferences.

    It's like asking which is better the MBA or the MBP at the end of the day.
  6. peapody macrumors 68040


    Oct 7, 2007
    baltimore, md
    I was trying to choose between the p5s and the bose ae2s. Obviously p5s are twice the cost of the ae2, but what sold me is the build quality, looks, size, portability, and general positive reviews from consumers and audiophiles alike on the interwebs.
  7. Bye Bye Baby macrumors 65816

    Bye Bye Baby

    Sep 15, 2004
    i(am in the)cloud
    Bose has good noise canceling.

    I do like B&W stuff.

    Depends on what you want to do with them. Do you travel?

    Then go Bose.

    Just for your sound system- then go with the B&Ws.
  8. MacSignal macrumors regular

    May 8, 2010
    My ears prefer the sound of the P5. I would add to the recommendations of the others that you listen to them both for yourself if you can. Good luck!
  9. 0B1 macrumors member

    Sep 16, 2006
    Have tried both in store and have used the 15s on long flights before.

    I prefer the sound of the B&W's, and found the large cups of the 15's a little uncomfortable for long periods.

    The only negative for the B&W's is the thinness of the cable although this is replaceable.

    In the end you have to leave the choice to your own ears, get down to your nearest apple store for a comparison.
  10. AAPLaday Guest


    Aug 6, 2008
    Manchester UK
    P5s are very good. Bit pricey though. Haven't heard the Bose but im always wary of anything made by them. See if you can have a listen using both before you buy.
  11. OmegaRed1723 macrumors 6502


    Jun 19, 2009
    The Waste
    I own a pair of P5's, and they do a very nice job of sound isolation. I got these because I hate active noise cancellation, but wanted something fairly small I could use when I'm out and about and don't feel like using my Ultimate Ears TripleFi in-ear buds. Also, for a closed-back can they are not overly bass-heavy (like the Dr. Dre Beats), which is nice.

    The cable, however, is *****. I cannot believe that a $400 set of phones has a cable this terrible. And there is no real possibility of having it re-cabled because of the way it snakes through the left can.

    All said and told, I do like the headphones. They are in a different league than the Bose as far as sound-quality goes, and are very comfy for long periods of listening (several hours, no problem).
  12. dime21 macrumors 6502

    Dec 9, 2010
    B&W will have better audio quality, Bose tends to be exaggerated towards highs and deep bass with an almost nonexistent mid-range (just like all the Bose home theater surround systems). Bose is NOT well regarded amongst Audiophiles.

    The Bose have good active noise cancellation, but they are bulky on your head, so your level of relaxation is diminished somewhat. Also, the Bose active cancellation causes nausea and vertigo in some people!!

    For noise cancellation, I like an in-ear design. Passive noise cancellation works better than active for stationary listening. Shure makes great in-ear designs with passive noise cancellation and fantastic sound quality.

    If you don't care about noise cancellation, I really like the Grado Labs headphones. The Grado SR-80 is probably my favorite headphone set. It has excellent sound quality and costs a fraction of the price of the big-name brands. Grado is Real Good Stuff.
  13. peapody macrumors 68040


    Oct 7, 2007
    baltimore, md

    Great recommendations here. I can't wait to get my P5s today. I know I shouldn't, but I have quite high expectations for them.

    I have never been a fan of active noise cancellation - I am one of those who gets headaches from it. The B5s are not well regarded by audiophiles as well, but you cannot deny that it has a better mix of build quality, sound quality, and style that is lacking from Bose.

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