Since the launch of AirPods Max last week, we’ve made some videos sharing a brief hands-on with Apple’s new headphones and a comparison of them to other popular noise-canceling headphones from Bose, Sony and Sennheiser.
There has been a lot of debate about whether AirPods Max is worth its $ 550 price tag, and the value will always be a personal decision, so in our last video, we decided to look at five reasons why you can think about buying the new AirPods Max.
Building / Comfort
For people who will be spending a lot of time wearing headphones, comfort and build quality are obviously key factors in determining whether they will have a good experience with a particular set. Comfort varies from person to person based on the shape and size of the head and other factors, but we found that theAirPods Max is incredibly comfortable.
Mesh ear protectors provide a good seal while allowing for some breathability that helps to reduce the sweat that sometimes occurs with other materials, such as leather. And if your hearing protectors wear out, the AirPods Max magnetic attachment system makes them incredibly easy to change.
The irAirPods Max are mainly made of metal, with aluminum earphones and stainless steel telescopic arms, which gives them a feeling of pleasantly cool quality to the touch. These metal parts mean, however, that irAirPods Max come significantly heavier than many competing headsets, which can be a problem for some users. But we found that the mesh headband does an excellent job of distributing that weight over the head for maximum comfort.
One of the main reasons people buy headsets is active noise cancellation (ANC), and we found that irAirPods Max offer excellent features in this regard. In our experience, it is difficult to hear anything around us while using AirPods Max with ANC enabled.
You can, of course, turn the ANC off if you want to hear more around you, but there is also the Transparency mode that keeps ANC on, but channels the sound, and we find that it allows us to hear just enough, without being too much of a distraction.
Although AirPods Max does not match high-quality wired headsets, we were impressed by the sound that AirPods Max can deliver via Bluetooth. The sound profile of AirPods Max is well balanced and not overly aggressive with the highs or lows.
With H1 chips in each headset, AirPods Max uses computer audio to adjust what you’re listening to in real time, customizing it to fit your head and other factors. And although it is not recommended to increase the volume too much, we found that the sound quality remains solid even at higher volume levels, offering clear and distortion-free sound.
Speaking of these H1 chips, they offer more than just good audio quality. They are also the main component that integrates AirPods Max into the Apple ecosystem. As with recent AirPods and Beats headsets, the H1 chip offers easy pairing and seamless audio switching between devices linked to your iCloud account. If you are listening to music on your iPhone and then pick up the iPad to start watching a video, irAirPods Max can automatically switch to start playing your PiPad audio.
All of this is customizable, of course, so you can select which devices you want to be able to take over as audio sources automatically, and even if you turn off automatic switching to a device, it only takes a few taps to switch manually.
Finally, there’s Spatial Audio, a new feature that Apple recently launched for AirPods Pro and which is also included in AirPods Max. Spatial Audio offers an immersive 3D audio experience with compatible content, and although we initially thought it would be somewhat misleading, we quickly proved that we were wrong. It really has to be experienced to believe, but it gives the feeling that the audio is coming from everything around you, but anchored by the device on which you are watching the content.
So, if you are watching a program on Apple TV + on your iPad, for example, you will have a surround sound experience that is very good in itself, but if you turn your head or move your iPad, the audio adjusts time to match the relative orientation of your head and the iPad. It is an extraordinarily good experience that will make you think that your headphones have stopped working and that your PiPad is outputting audio from your own speakers.
These are our top five reasons why you might want to invest in AirPods Max. Yes, the $ 550 price tag can be a little difficult to swallow when competitors are reaching $ 350 or less, but if you invest heavily in the Apple ecosystem, the combination of comfort, build quality and features may suffice the balance in favor of irAirPods Max.
Were you able to get your hands on AirPods Max before shipping dates fell next year? Have you recently opted for a competitive headset set after seeing what AirPods Max had to offer? Let us know your opinion in the comments.