Bose Around-Ear review

These Bose headphones weren’t quite what we were expecting. Compared with so many finely crafted and heavy-duty headsets in our round-up, these seem decidedly featherweight. Which is, of course, a bonus for portability. But with Bose’s reputation for finely crafted consumer audio, we anticipated something more industrial and robust. Instead, these are light, portable phones with studio looks.

The springy, padded headband is slim but wonderfully flexible. It’s bendy enough to squash into a backpack, even though they don’t fully fold. There’s not too much adjustment in the cups, though, and there’s some more of that dreaded chrome-coloured plastic.

Not a good look.

The foam pads are wide and deep. So deep that you get that standing-on-the-seashore hiss when you clamp them over your ears before you turn your music on. At least that means you get a good seal.

We expected more from this set of headphones

The sound they make is even and balanced, with lots of middle and a slightly crunchy top end. These were probably the only phones in the test that we thought could do with a bit more bass. That was easily rectified with a bit of equalisation. When we gave them more low frequencies, they handled them well.

OUR VERDICT

We expected much more. The Bose cans could be a good find in the bargain bin, but for the money there are better-performing and more attractive headsets in this round-up.

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