Apple today announced the AirPods Max, its premium over-ear headphones. Like every other Apple product, the AirPods Max is truly revolutionary and packs a number of new features that are rare to find in even other premium headphones. Below is a look at some of the top AirPods Max features.
The AirPods Max doesn’t just come with a mouth-watering price tag of $549. They also come with a number of unique features that make them notably better than other popular premium over-ear headphones like the Sony WH-1000XM4, Bose QC 35II, and more. In many ways, Apple has pushed the boundary of premium over-ear headphones with the AirPods Max. How? Check out some of its unique features below.
AirPods Max Top Features
Just like the AirPods and the AirPods Pro, the AirPods Max also features automatic ear detection. Simply take the headphones out of their case, put them around your head, and they will automatically turn on. Similarly, when the headphones are taken off and put in the bundled case, they will enter into an ultra low power mode to preserve their battery life. When one removes one of the earcups from their head, the music playback will automatically pause as well.
Active Noise Cancellation
Like the AirPods Pro and many other premium over-ear headphones, the AirPods Pro also features Active Noise Cancellation. Given how good Apple’s ANC tech already is on the AirPods Pro, it is going to be even better on the AirPods Max. This means that once you put the headphones on, it will block and cancel all surrounding noise so that you can completely drown yourself in the music you are listening to and enjoy it to the fullest. If you tend to take long haul flights, ANC on the AirPods Max is definitely going to come in handy.
Another feature from the AirPods Pro lineup that’s there on the AirPods Max as well. The headphones feature Transparency mode thereby allowing users to listen to music and the sound from the environment around them as well. This mode is perfect when one is walking down the street or in an environment where they need to be aware of their surroundings.
One can quickly switch between ANC and Transparency mode on the AirPods Max using the dedicated Noise control button.
With the iOS 14 update, Apple added Spatial audio support to the AirPods Pro which has been described as black magic by many. With Spatial Audio, the AirPods Max will use the data from the gyroscope and accelerometer to track head movement in a 3D space and place sound virtually accordingly.
AirPods Max use spatial audio with dynamic head tracking to place sounds virtually anywhere in a space — delivering an immersive, theaterlike experience for content recorded in 5.1, 7.1, and Dolby Atmos. Using the gyroscope and accelerometer in AirPods Max and iPhone or iPad, spatial audio tracks the motion of a user’s head as well as the device, compares the motion data, then remaps the sound field so it stays anchored to the device, even as the user’s head moves.
It is difficult to describe spatial audio in words, and once you experience it, you will realize just how magical it is.
Excellent Sound Quality
While the reviews of the AirPods Max are not yet out, it is clear that the headphones have been designed by Apple to deliver outstanding sound quality. The headphones boast of a 40mm dynamic driver that can deliver rich sound and bass. What’s even more impressive is Apple’s claims that thanks to a unique dual neodymium ring magnet motor, the AirPods Max can maintain a total harmonic distortion of less than 1 percent across the entire audible range at full volume.
One of the issues with high-end over-ear headphones is that they are uncomfortable to wear for a long period of time. Apple has taken utmost care of this aspect with the AirPods Max. There’s a canopy spanning the headband which is made from a breathable knit mesh which helps to equally distribute the pressure on one’s head. The stainless steel frame is wrapped with soft-touch material for a comfortable experience. The headphones also feature telescopic arms so that they can extend smoothly and sit in one’s desired position.
Each ear cup is covered with anodized aluminum and features a mechanism that allows one to rotate them independently of each other. Lastly, Apple is also using a mesh textile inside the ear cups to provide “pillow-like softness.”
On most high-end over-ear headphones, users can control the volume and music playback using gestures or by tapping touch buttons. However, they are not really an ideal mechanism as they either cause the headphones to move around or are simply unintuitive. Apple solves this problem by using the same Digital Crown as seen on the Apple Watch on the AirPods Max. Using the Digital Crown, one can quickly change the volume, skip music tracks, answer calls, or activate Siri.
If you were hoping the AirPods Max featured a USB-C connector, prepare to be disappointed. The headphones feature a Lightning connector for charging purposes. There’s no wireless charging here which is understandable given the form factor of the headphones.
Apple quotes 20 hours of music playback for the AirPods Max with ANC on. However, if you find the headphones on low power, you can charge them for just 5 minutes and they will be good enough to offer 1.5 hours of music playback.
Unlike the AirPods and AirPods Pro, Apple is offering the AirPods Max in five stunning colors. This includes Space Gray, Silver, Sky Blue, Green, and Pink.
No Android Support
While the AirPods Max does feature Bluetooth 5.0, it will not work with other non-Apple devices. This means you will not be able to use the AirPods Max with your Android device or Windows-based PC.
What do you think about the AirPods Max? Do you think the features above justify its $549 price tag? Or do you think Apple has gone overboard with its pricing? Drop a comment and let us know!