Bose On-Ear Headphones

These lightweight, compact Bose headphones have an expansive sound that's not short on bass

Bose On-Ear Headphones
  • Expert Rating

    3.75 / 5

Pros

  • Portable, well-rounded sound

Cons

  • Poor cable design, mediocre build quality

Bottom Line

Bose's portable On-Ear Headphones don't have the noise cancelling of more expensive products from the company, but they do have good sound quality and are light and portable. We weren't thrilled with the cable design or build quality, but the reasonable price tag puts the Bose On-Ear Headphones in direct competition with Sennheiser's portable models.

Would you buy this?

The Bose On-Ear Headphones are light (under 150g), compact enough to fit into a large pocket, and have impressive sound quality. If you travel regularly but don't like in-ear headphones or earbuds, a portable set of headphones like these may be just what you need.

We think the Bose On-Ear Headphones are definitely competent when it comes to reproducing audio. A strong mid-bass component gives richness and warmth to music and vocals, while treble is crisp and reasonably detailed. Lower bass trails off early in the frequency range, but this is to be expected from portable headphones which use small drivers. The Bose On-Ear Headphones are versatile enough for music like rock and dance music, but we'd probably hold off on the bass-heavy electronica and classical music.

The build quality of the Bose On-Ear Headphones is acceptable but not brilliant. We're generally not fans of leatherette finishes on headbands and earcups as it tends to become quite sweaty after a short period of wear. The upside is that the material is soft and comfortable. The headband telescopes for finetuning earcup placement, although as the headphones sit on the ear rather than around them you will need to spend some time finding the most comfortable position.

We didn't find these headphones fatiguing to wear for long periods, making them a good choice if you have a long commute every day.

The left earcup of the Bose On-Ear Headphones has a male 3.5mm headphone jack that is used to connect one of two bundled 3.5mm cables. We would have preferred a headphone socket instead. These headphones do not feature the active noise cancelling of Bose's QuietComfort 15 headphones, but a small amount of acoustic noise cancellation is provided by the On-Ear Headphones' tight clamping force.

The $199 price tag of the Bose On-Ear Headphones means they compete against products like the lower-end models in Sennheiser's PX portable headphone series. They may not be as advanced as more expensive Bose models, but the Bose On-Ear Headphones impressed us with their compromise between portability and sound quality.

Stay up to date with the latest reviews. Sign up to GoodGearGuide’s Gear Daily newsletters

Follow GoodGearGuide on Twitter: @Goodgearguide

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Read more on these topics: headphones, Bose
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?