While finding a good set of headphones is very difficult, finding good set of noise-canceling headphones is even more difficult. I’ve had experience with the Bose Quiet Comfort and the Sony MDR-NC11 models, and neither were even worth reviewing. Sure, their sound quality was nice, but their noise-canceling technology (while innovative) was lousy. Is there a better choice? Enter the Sennheiser PXC 250. Read the review.
Are you sure about the technology in the Bose headphones? How come they have microphones built-in? I had both QuietComfort and QuietComfort II headphones and both systems had not only microphones, but also didn’t produce any white audible white noise. And yes you can hear white noise, you just forget about it after a while – that’s how it works, and it doesn’t work very well. The Bose technology, however, seems far from ‘lousy’ to me. Maybe you’d better specify what products you’re talking about. (I have no experience with the Sony stuff.)
Granted, the Bose headphones cost USD 300 and they’re not perfect – especially that they don’t filter out speech very well. But better than nothing, and I suspect – without having tested this – their closed-cup design will give me a better experience than the open-cup ones you’re reviewing.
Thanks for the comment, Dave. I have modified the review so that it’s worded a bit better on the “white noise” issue. As for the Bose closed-cup vs the Sennheiser open-cup, I noticed no difference when the noise-canceling technology was turned off. I suspect that it has to do with the material surrounding the cup, but have found no literature on that. Basically, the Sennheiser design just works as well as the Bose design. With the noise-canceling technology activated on the Sennheiser PXC 250, I heard no external noise and no “white noise”, which is exactly why I prefer them over the Bose.