Bose is bringing an finish to the long-running saga of complaints relating to noise cancellation points with its Quiet Comfort 35 and Quiet Comfort 35 II Bluetooth headphones. After spending months trying into stories of decreased NC efficiency — one thing many purchasers have blamed on firmware updates — Bose has concluded that firmware isn’t liable for the perceived drop in noise cancellation effectiveness. But it’s going to let QC35 house owners downgrade again to older firmware in the event that they need to, which is an possibility that the corporate had beforehand supported, however later pulled amid all this controversy.
As famous by Gizmodo, Bose printed a long, in-depth forum post about its findings on Thursday. “When we launched QC35 I and II, we set stringent specifications for noise cancelling performance,” the corporate wrote in its report. “Through all of our investigation and testing, we’re confident that firmware 4.5.2 did not affect the noise cancelling feature.”
The firm carried out intensive lab testing and went as far as to go to some prospects at dwelling to look at them utilizing the QC35 and QC35II headphones. “This robust evaluation of customer-returned units did not reveal any issues with noise cancellation performance, and Bose was not able to replicate the concerns of our customers,” the report says.
But since there was nonetheless a disconnect between buyer suggestions and its personal findings, the corporate wasn’t glad to finish the investigation there. So it went additional and sought out impartial testing by way of “a third-party acoustics test laboratory.” Again, the up to date 4.5.2 firmware confirmed no indicators of being the wrongdoer behind degraded noise cancellation.
So what’s the issue, then? There’s received to be one thing occurring that created this refrain of complaints, proper? Well, Bose has an evidence. In the few small circumstances the place it did discover a measurable distinction in noise canceling high quality, the corporate says the ear cups weren’t absolutely snapped on; Bose says lacking even one of many 10 tabs could make a distinction. Third-party ear cushions had been additionally discovered to “negatively impact passive reduction performance” and put the headphones out of spec, and Bose additionally observed that some models from prospects had mechanical harm — doubtless from on a regular basis put on and tear.
“Our full engineering analysis determined that the degradation in all cases was the result of hardware related issues with ear cushions, aftermarket parts, or mechanical integrity. Once again, the firmware update 4.5.2 was not found to be the cause of any degradation in overall noise reduction performance.”
In response to all of this, Bose is updating its testing procedures, enhancing its firmware replace web site, and (briefly) giving prospects the choice to downgrade in the event that they so select — even whereas insisting that firmware was by no means the issue. QC35II house owners can downgrade to 4.3.6, and the unique QC35 can return to 2.5.5. “If you wish to take advantage of this downgrade option, we advise you to do so as soon as possible,” Bose stated, and the corporate stated it encourages all prospects to stay updated on the most recent firmware. It additionally made the above video for troubleshooting noise cancellation issues.
Take all of it in, and I feel this can be a fairly commendable job from Bose in attempting to search out no matter drawback has been irritating individuals. The firm took a very long time to deal with the preliminary buildup of complaints, nevertheless it’s onerous to argue that Bose didn’t put in some severe work right here. To that finish, Bose has posted a forum thread where customers can discuss the latest report. Some are appreciative of the corporate’s effort, however others nonetheless suppose Bose has missed the mark and say the decreased noise cancellation challenge stays unresolved.
The total takeaway is that this: in case your QC35 or QC35II are working properly, perhaps simply attempt to maintain them on no matter firmware they’re working for so long as doable if you wish to keep away from this headache.