There's a headphone-shaped elephant in the room this week: Apple just announced the, challenging the premium likes of the and the . But if you thought the were pricey at $249, get a load of this: The will run you $549.
Worth it? I guess that remains to be seen, as the new headphones won't arrive until Dec. 15. CNET audio expert David Carnoy was eager to get his hands on them (or his ears in them), notingand . Here are his . Certainly there are audiophiles out there willing to pay this kind of money for fancy headphones -- though I'm not one of them. Not even close.
Indeed, I can't help thinking what else I could buy with $549. So, pretending I found exactly that amount in my couch cushions, I put together this list.
Sony WH-1000XM4 + Apple AirPods Pro + 6 months of HBO Max = $547
- Sony WH-1000XM4 ( )
- Apple AirPods Pro ( )
- Six months of HBO Max ( )
This is my favorite option by far, because you're not only getting top-rated over-the-ear headphones, but also top-rated earbuds and half a year of streaming goodness. (, anyone?)
Oculus Quest 2 + Nintendo Switch Lite + Anker Soundcore Life Q20 = $543
- Oculus Quest 2 ( )
- Nintendo Switch Lite ( )
- Anker Soundcore Life Q20 headphones ( )
The Quest 2 is hard to come by right now -- unsurprising given what an-- but the upshot here is that for a bit less than $549, you could buy two great gaming platforms and a set of over-the-ear headphones with ANC (one that made CNET's list of ).
Google Pixel 4A + Beats Solo Pro + 1 year of Disney Plus + Ember Mug 2 + Oxo Brew Single Serve Coffee Dripper = $552
- Google Pixel 4A with free Beats Solo Pro ( )
- Disney Plus ( )
- Ember Mug 2 14-ounce ( )
- Oxo Brew Single Serve ( )
Visible's phone deal includes not only a slightly discounted, but also the over-the-ear headphones with ANC -- a $300 value. Then, just for fun, I tossed in my beloved Ember Mug (crazy-pricey but, hey, we're splurging here) and Oxo's great pour-over gizmo to go with it. The total comes to just a few bucks more than the AirPods Max.
7 Amazon Echo smart speakers + Aukey EP-N5 true wireless earbuds = $535
- Amazon Echo ( )
- Aukey EP-N5 ( )
The new-for-2020 Echo is still marked down topricing, so you might as well put one in every room of the house (that's right, ) And because sometimes you just want a little peace and quiet, Aukey's earbuds are an AirPods Pro alternative that's pretty darn good for the price. They normally run $60, but an on-page coupon knocks 25% off.
OK, those are just a few ways to blow $549. How would you spend that cash?
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