It's also worth noting that the in-line remote just didn't feel like it would hold up that well. Also, the shape of the headband seems like it should be a little more rounded. It's not a huge deal, but the Bose QC15s conform a little better to your head. With the Monoprice headphones, you're aware of the band pushing against the top of your head.
As I said in my review of the
Companies like Harman Kardon and Bose have managed to do a good job making their active noise-canceling headphones sound clean (in the case of the Bose QC 15s, I would use the adjective "smooth"). And while these Monoprice headphones sound fairly decent for a noise-canceling model (they have strong bass), they just don't have the level of clarity that those much higher-priced models do. In short, they don't sound as good.
As for the noise cancellation itself, it's decent. There was a faint hiss when I activated the noise-cancellation, and it didn't muffle the sound as well as the Bose -- which has the best noise cancellation I've encountered. The Monoprice's noise cancellation may also be slightly behind the Harman Kardon NC and Audio-Technica ATH-ANC9, but it's pretty close.
On the plus side, unlike the Bose QC 15s, you can use these in passive mode, with the noise cancellation turned off. They actually sound better, with significantly cleaner sound. And the fact is, the headphones have a tight enough seal around your ear to keep out a lot of ambient noise.
It's worth mentioning that I also compared this Monoprice model with the
With the Monoprice Noise Canceling Headphone, you're getting a product that's about 70 percent as good as the Bose QC15 for a little more than a third of the price. For some people that will be good enough, and it helps that Monoprice throws in some extra accessories, including the in-line microphone for smartphone use. Despite a few flaws, at $112 or so, they're a decent deal if you're looking for a budget pair of noise-canceling headphones.
If you're on the fence about these, I should note that Monoprice does offer a 30-day money-back guarantee on them, so you can order them and get a hold of a pair of Bose QC15s to do your own comparison. After doing your own tests, I would guess that around 70 percent of users will keep them. But then again, maybe I'm a little more picky about my headphones than most people.