Is Bose Noise Cancelling Better than Sony

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When it comes to noise cancelling headphones, Bose and Sony are two of the most popular brands on the market. But which one is better? With so many options available, it can be difficult to determine which brand offers the best noise cancelling technology.

Both Bose and Sony have a strong reputation for producing high-quality audio products, but they each have their own unique features and benefits. With advancements in technology, both brands have continued to improve their noise cancelling capabilities.

In this article, we will compare Bose and Sony noise cancelling headphones to determine which brand offers the best overall experience. From sound quality to comfort, battery life to price, we will examine the key factors that may sway your decision when choosing between Bose and Sony noise cancelling headphones.

History of Bose and Sony

Bose Corporation and Sony Corporation are two renowned companies with significant contributions to the audio equipment industry.


  • Founded in 1964 by Dr. Amar G. Bose, Bose Corporation is an American company known for its high-quality audio products, including speakers, headphones, and sound systems.
  • Bose initially gained recognition for its groundbreaking research in acoustics and its innovative speaker designs, such as the Bose 901 Direct/Reflecting speaker system introduced in the 1960s.
  • Over the years, Bose has continued to pioneer advancements in audio technology, including noise-cancelling headphones, compact audio systems, and home theater solutions.
  • Bose’s commitment to delivering premium sound quality and cutting-edge innovation has earned it a loyal customer base worldwide.


  • Sony Corporation, founded in 1946 by Masaru Ibuka and Akio Morita, is a Japanese multinational conglomerate known for its diverse range of consumer electronics, entertainment products, and services.
  • Sony has a long history of innovation in audio equipment, beginning with the production of Japan’s first tape recorder, the Type-G, in 1950.
  • In the 1960s, Sony introduced the iconic Walkman, revolutionizing the way people listen to music on the go and establishing Sony as a leader in portable audio technology.
  • Sony has continued to push the boundaries of audio innovation with products like the Sony MDR-1 headphones series, which combined advanced audio technology with sleek design.
  • With a reputation for high-quality audio products and a legacy of innovation, Sony remains a prominent player in the global audio market.

Both Bose and Sony have earned recognition and acclaim for their contributions to the audio equipment industry, continually striving to deliver superior sound experiences to consumers worldwide.

Comparison of noise cancelling technology

Bose and Sony are two leading manufacturers of noise-cancelling headphones, each employing distinct approaches and techniques to achieve effective noise reduction. Here’s a comparison of their respective technologies:


Active Noise Cancellation (ANC): Bose utilizes active noise cancellation technology to counteract external sounds. Multiple microphones on the headphones pick up ambient noise, which is then analyzed and countered by generating anti-noise signals. These signals are played through the headphones’ speakers, effectively cancelling out the incoming noise.

Adaptive Noise Cancellation: Bose headphones often feature adaptive noise cancellation, which dynamically adjusts the level of noise cancellation based on the environment. This allows the headphones to optimize performance in various settings, providing an optimal listening experience.

TriPort Acoustic Headphone Structure: Bose incorporates its proprietary TriPort acoustic headphone structure into its noise-cancelling headphones. This design enhances the overall audio performance by delivering deep, immersive sound while maintaining a compact and lightweight form factor.


Dual Noise Sensor Technology: Sony’s noise-cancelling headphones typically employ dual noise sensor technology. These headphones utilize multiple microphones both inside and outside the ear cups to capture and analyze ambient noise. This comprehensive approach helps to ensure effective noise reduction across a wide range of frequencies.

HD Noise Cancelling Processor: Sony’s flagship noise-cancelling headphones often feature advanced processing technology dedicated to noise cancellation. This processor enhances the headphones’ ability to accurately analyze and counteract external sounds, resulting in superior noise reduction performance.

Personal Noise Cancelling Optimizer: Sony implements a unique feature called the Personal Noise Cancelling Optimizer. This feature analyzes factors such as head size, glasses, and hair to calibrate the noise cancellation performance specifically for the individual wearer. By customizing the noise cancellation settings, Sony aims to provide a personalized and optimized listening experience.

Both Bose and Sony utilize active noise cancellation technology in their headphones, but they employ different techniques and features to achieve optimal noise reduction. While Bose focuses on adaptive noise cancellation and its proprietary TriPort acoustic headphone structure, Sony emphasizes dual noise sensor technology, advanced processing, and personalized optimization for enhanced performance.

Ultimately, the choice between Bose and Sony noise-cancelling headphones may depend on individual preferences for sound quality, comfort, and additional features.

Sound quality

Both Bose and Sony are renowned for producing high-quality headphones with excellent sound performance. When evaluating the sound quality of Bose and Sony headphones, several factors come into play, including bass response, clarity, and overall balance.

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Bose Headphones

Bass: Bose headphones are often praised for their well-balanced bass response. While they may not deliver the deepest bass compared to some competitors, Bose focuses on providing a tight and controlled low-end that enhances the overall listening experience without overpowering other frequencies.

Clarity: Bose headphones typically offer crisp and clear midrange and treble frequencies, contributing to a detailed and immersive soundstage. The emphasis on clarity ensures that vocals and instruments are reproduced accurately, allowing listeners to enjoy a wide range of music genres with clarity and precision.

Balance: Bose headphones are known for their balanced sound signature, with a focus on delivering a natural and enjoyable listening experience across the entire frequency spectrum. The soundstage is often well-defined, providing a sense of depth and separation between different instruments and elements in the music.

Sony Headphones

Bass: Sony headphones are often lauded for their powerful and punchy bass response. With advanced driver technology and tuning, Sony headphones can reproduce deep bass frequencies with impact and authority, making them ideal for bass-heavy music genres like electronic, hip-hop, and rock.

Clarity: Sony headphones offer excellent clarity across the frequency range, with a focus on preserving detail and nuance in the music. The midrange and treble frequencies are typically well-defined, allowing vocals and instrumentals to shine through with clarity and precision.

Balance: Sony headphones aim for a balanced sound signature, although some models may lean slightly towards a warmer or bass-boosted sound profile. However, Sony headphones generally provide a well-balanced audio experience, with a good mix of bass, mids, and highs for a satisfying listening experience across various music genres.

Ultimately, the sound quality of both Bose and Sony headphones is highly subjective and may vary depending on personal preferences and individual listening habits. While Bose headphones prioritize a balanced and natural sound signature, Sony headphones often excel in delivering powerful bass and detailed clarity. It’s recommended to audition both brands’ headphones to determine which sound profile best suits your preferences.

Comfort and design

When comparing the comfort and design features of Bose and Sony headphones, several factors come into play, including weight, fit, and durability.

Bose Headphones:

Comfort: Bose headphones are often praised for their lightweight and comfortable design, making them suitable for extended listening sessions. The ear cushions are typically plush and well-padded, providing a soft and comfortable fit around the ears. Additionally, Bose headphones often feature ergonomic headbands that distribute weight evenly, reducing pressure points on the head and ears.

Design: Bose headphones are known for their sleek and minimalist design aesthetic. They often feature a clean and understated look with smooth lines and premium materials. The build quality is generally high, with durable materials that withstand everyday wear and tear.

Weight: Bose headphones tend to be lightweight compared to some competitors, making them ideal for portability and on-the-go use. The lightweight design contributes to overall comfort, allowing users to wear the headphones for extended periods without experiencing discomfort or fatigue.

Sony Headphones:

Comfort: Sony headphones are designed with comfort in mind, featuring plush ear cushions and adjustable headbands for a comfortable fit. The ear cups are often spacious, providing ample room for the ears without feeling cramped. Sony also offers various earpad materials, including memory foam, to enhance comfort and provide a personalized fit.

Design: Sony headphones showcase a blend of modern and functional design elements. They come in a range of styles and colors to suit different preferences, from sleek and understated to bold and eye-catching. Sony headphones also feature durable construction, with high-quality materials that withstand daily use and provide long-lasting durability.

Weight: Sony headphones vary in weight depending on the model and features. While some Sony headphones may be lightweight and portable, others may have a slightly heavier build due to additional features such as active noise cancellation or larger drivers. However, Sony prioritizes balancing weight with comfort to ensure that users can wear the headphones comfortably for extended periods.

Overall, both Bose and Sony prioritize comfort and design in their headphone offerings, with lightweight construction, comfortable ear cushions, and durable materials. Whether you prefer Bose’s minimalist design aesthetic or Sony’s modern styling, both brands offer comfortable and well-designed headphones suitable for various preferences and lifestyles.

Battery life and charging

Battery life and charging capabilities are crucial considerations for users, especially for wireless headphones. Here’s an assessment of the battery life and charging features of Bose and Sony headphones:

Bose Headphones

Battery Life: Bose headphones typically offer competitive battery life, ranging from 10 to 30 hours depending on the model and usage. Some high-end models, such as the Bose QuietComfort 35 II and Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700, provide up to 20 hours of wireless playback with noise cancellation activated.

Charging: Bose headphones generally use standard USB charging cables for recharging. Many models support quick charging features, allowing users to get several hours of playback with just a short charging period, usually around 15 minutes. However, specific charging times vary between models.

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Sony Headphones:

Battery Life: Sony headphones are known for their impressive battery life, often exceeding 20 hours of continuous playback on a single charge. Flagship models like the Sony WH-1000XM4 offer up to 30 hours of battery life with noise cancellation enabled, making them suitable for long flights or extended commutes.

Charging: Sony headphones typically utilize USB-C charging ports for recharging, which provide faster charging speeds compared to standard USB ports. Similar to Bose, many Sony headphones also support quick charging functionality, allowing users to enjoy several hours of playback with a short charging period, usually around 10 to 15 minutes.

Both Bose and Sony prioritize providing users with long battery life and convenient charging options. While specific battery life and charging times may vary between models, both brands offer wireless headphones with reliable performance and efficient charging capabilities to meet the needs of modern users. Ultimately, the choice between Bose and Sony headphones may depend on individual preferences regarding battery life, charging technology, and other features offered by each brand.

Pricing and affordability

Bose and Sony both offer a range of headphones at various price points to cater to different budgets and preferences. Here’s a comparison of the pricing and affordability of both brands, along with considerations of whether the cost is justified by the features and quality:

Bose Headphones

  • Price Range: Bose headphones typically range from mid-range to high-end prices. Entry-level models such as the Bose SoundLink On-Ear Wireless headphones are priced competitively, while premium offerings like the Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 are positioned at the higher end of the spectrum.
  • Affordability: While Bose headphones may be considered relatively expensive compared to some budget brands, many users find the cost justified by the brand’s reputation for excellent sound quality, comfort, and innovative features such as adaptive noise cancellation and intuitive controls. Bose headphones often offer a balance of performance and premium build quality that appeals to discerning consumers willing to invest in a superior audio experience.

Sony Headphones

  • Price Range: Sony headphones span a wide range of price points, from budget-friendly options like the Sony WH-CH510 to flagship models such as the Sony WH-1000XM4, which command a higher price due to their advanced features and premium build quality.
  • Affordability: Sony headphones are generally perceived as offering good value for money, considering their competitive pricing relative to the features and performance they offer. Sony is known for incorporating cutting-edge technology into its headphones, including industry-leading noise cancellation, high-resolution audio support, and personalized optimization features. Many users find that Sony headphones provide a compelling combination of affordability, performance, and durability, making them a popular choice among consumers seeking high-quality audio products without breaking the bank.

Overall, both Bose and Sony offer headphones that cover a wide spectrum of price ranges, from affordable to premium options. While Bose headphones may be positioned at a higher price point on average, they often deliver exceptional sound quality, comfort, and advanced features that justify the cost for many users.

On the other hand, Sony headphones provide competitive pricing along with innovative technology and solid performance, making them a compelling choice for those seeking quality audio products at a more accessible price point. Ultimately, the decision between Bose and Sony headphones may come down to individual preferences, budget considerations, and the specific features and qualities that matter most to each user.

Additional features

Both Bose and Sony offer a range of additional features beyond basic audio playback capabilities to enhance the user experience and differentiate their headphones in the market. Here’s an exploration of some of the additional features offered by each brand:


Adjustable Noise-Cancelling Levels: Some Bose headphones, such as the Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700, offer adjustable noise-cancelling levels, allowing users to customize the amount of external noise they want to block out. This feature provides greater flexibility and control over the listening experience, accommodating different environments and preferences.

Voice Assistants: Many Bose headphones integrate with popular voice assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, enabling users to control their music, manage tasks, and access information hands-free using voice commands. This functionality adds convenience and versatility to the headphones, allowing users to stay connected and productive on the go.

Customization Options: Bose offers various customization options for its headphones, including adjustable EQ settings and personalized noise-cancelling profiles through the Bose Music app. Users can fine-tune the sound signature to suit their preferences and create custom presets for different listening scenarios, such as commuting, working, or relaxing at home.


Adaptive Sound Control: Sony’s Adaptive Sound Control feature automatically adjusts the noise-cancelling settings based on the user’s activity and surroundings. The headphones analyze factors such as location, motion, and ambient noise levels to optimize noise cancellation performance and sound quality in real-time, ensuring an optimal listening experience wherever you go.

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Speak-to-Chat: Some Sony headphones, like the Sony WH-1000XM4, feature a Speak-to-Chat function that automatically pauses music and activates ambient sound mode when the user starts speaking. This allows for quick and seamless conversations without needing to remove the headphones, enhancing convenience and social interaction.

360 Reality Audio: Sony offers support for 360 Reality Audio, an immersive audio format that provides a three-dimensional soundstage for a more lifelike listening experience. With compatible music streaming services and content, users can enjoy spatial audio with enhanced depth and realism, bringing their favorite tracks to life like never before.

Both Bose and Sony continue to innovate and introduce new features to their headphone lineup, aiming to deliver an enhanced and personalized audio experience for users. Whether it’s customizable noise-cancelling levels, voice assistant integration, or immersive audio technologies, these additional features contribute to making Bose and Sony headphones stand out in the competitive audio market.


In conclusion, both Bose and Sony offer excellent noise-cancelling headphones with a range of features and capabilities designed to meet the needs and preferences of different users. Here’s a summary of the key points discussed:

  • Noise-Cancelling Technology: Both Bose and Sony employ advanced active noise cancellation technology in their headphones, utilizing multiple microphones to analyze and counteract external noise effectively.
  • Sound Quality: Bose headphones are known for their balanced sound signature and emphasis on clarity, while Sony headphones often offer powerful bass response and detailed clarity across the frequency range.
  • Comfort and Design: Both Bose and Sony prioritize comfort and design in their headphones, with lightweight construction, plush ear cushions, and durable materials contributing to overall comfort and usability.
  • Battery Life and Charging: Bose and Sony headphones offer competitive battery life, with some models providing over 20 hours of playback on a single charge. Both brands also support quick charging functionality for added convenience.
  • Additional Features: Bose and Sony offer a range of additional features beyond noise cancellation, including adjustable noise-cancelling levels, voice assistant integration, and customization options, enhancing the overall user experience.

Ultimately, determining which brand offers a better noise-cancelling experience depends on individual preferences and priorities. Bose headphones may appeal to users seeking a balanced sound signature, comfortable design, and intuitive features like adaptive noise cancellation and customizable EQ settings. On the other hand, Sony headphones may be preferred by those who prioritize powerful bass, advanced technologies like adaptive sound control and 360 Reality Audio, and value-driven pricing.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Is Bose noise cancelling better than Sony?

It depends on personal preference and what features are important to you.

What are the differences between Bose and Sony noise cancelling technology?

Bose uses active noise cancelling technology, while Sony uses both active and passive noise cancelling. Bose also has customizable noise cancelling levels, while Sony has adaptive noise cancelling.

Does one brand have better sound quality than the other?

Both Bose and Sony are known for their high-quality sound. It ultimately comes down to personal preference and which sound profile you prefer.

Which brand has better battery life for their noise cancelling headphones?

Bose typically has longer battery life compared to Sony, with some models lasting up to 20 hours. Sony’s battery life can range from 10-30 hours depending on the model.

Are Bose noise cancelling headphones more expensive than Sony?

Bose tends to have a higher price point compared to Sony, but this can vary depending on the specific model and features.

Which brand has a better warranty for their noise cancelling headphones?

Both Bose and Sony offer a one-year warranty for their noise cancelling headphones. However, Bose also offers an extended two-year warranty for an additional cost.

Are there any notable differences in comfort between Bose and Sony noise cancelling headphones?

Comfort is subjective, but Bose is known for their comfortable designs and lightweight materials. Sony also has comfortable options, but some users may find them to be bulkier.

Does one brand offer more variety in terms of noise cancelling headphone options?

Both Bose and Sony offer a range of noise cancelling headphones, from over-ear to in-ear models. However, Bose has a wider selection of options and features compared to Sony.

Is one brand more durable than the other?

Both brands have durable noise cancelling headphones, but Bose is known for their sturdy designs and long-lasting durability.

Which brand is better for canceling out specific types of noise, like airplane or office noise?

Both Bose and Sony are effective at cancelling out different types of noise, but Bose’s customizable noise cancelling levels may make them slightly more effective in certain environments.

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