CNET First Look
Bose AE2w: Bluetooth headphone is surprisingly impressiveBose's AE2w may be a little funky looking and expensive, but it's very comfortable and sounds good.
Hi. I'm David Carnoy, executive editor for cnet.com and I'm here with the AE2w, Bose's first Bluetooth headphone. What's interesting about this headphone is that it's very similar to the Bose wired AE2 headphone, which is one of the company's most popular non-noise cancelling over the ear/headphones. The difference is that Bose has made some tweaks to the sound of the headphone and added what amounts to a Bluetooth dongle which connects to the headphone port, you know, the jack where you normally attached the headphone cable too. That dongle doesn't look like it's removable but, in fact, it is, which will leave some owners the wired AE2 and wondering why Bose doesn't just sell this accessories separately. It may someday, but right now, it doesn't. So if you want a wireless Bose headphone, the AE2w is currently it. What I will say is that this headphone's sounds surprisingly good and is arguably the most comfortable over the year Bluetooth headphone on the market. That's not surprising since the standard AE2 is lightweight and very comfortable and also manages to passively seal out a good amount of external noise. Aside from being really comfortable, the headphone sounds very good as well, especially for a Bluetooth headphone. There's good clarity and the sound is well-balanced, dynamic and pretty natural sounding, which means Bose isn't pushing the base too hard. You know, I thought they were very pleasant-sounding headphones that I could work for a long periods, they're like all over the year models. Your ears will get steamy and warmer environments. Bose says, the AE2w has improved performance over the AE2 because it uses something called Bose Active EQ. So there is a slight difference in cell quality but otherwise, the 2 miles have the same design like with most stereo Bluetooth this model also has an integrated microphone for cellphone calls and the answer/end button and volume controls are well-placed on the dongle and easy to operate by feel. The answer/end button also serves as a button for skipping tracks forward and back. And as for battery life, you get about 7 hours before having to recharge the dongle, that's decent though not great. However, if the battery does run out, you can switch to wired connection and still use the headphones. Rub it all this is the price. These guys are expensive at $250 and I thought Bose could have included the better carrying case at this price instead of a clock pouch you get. But if you can live with that high price, you are getting a very comfortable wireless headphone that also has to sound very good or take a leap for a Bluetooth model. I'm David Carnoy and that's the Bose AE2w wireless headphone. Thanks for watching.