Skip to main content

Bose updates QC45 ANC headphones with adjustable EQ

The Bose QuietComfort 45 (QC45) are among the best noise-canceling wireless headphones you can buy. But unlike most of the competition, Bose did not equip the QC45 with the ability to control their equalization. That was a surprise, given that the older (but pricier) Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 have adjustable EQ. Thankfully, that omission has now been addressed via a new firmware update that adds a three-band EQ to the Bose Music app.

In typical Bose fashion, the new EQ setting is a simple and clean affair. You get three sliders (bass, mid, and treble) and four presets (bass boost/bass reducer and treble boost/treble reducer). You likely won’t be surprised to learn that each of these presets does exactly what it says it will do. There’s also the ability to manually move each slider to your desired positions by using one of the presets as a starting point, or by hitting the reset button and then manipulating the sound from a neutral baseline.

Unfortunately, there’s no way to save a manual setting so that you can quickly return to it later. That seems like a big oversight given that those who actually enjoy dialing in their sound signatures don’t want to have to do it again and again. Moreover, some folks may find that a setting that works admirably for one genre of music may not suit other genres. Here’s hoping that Bose gives this some thought and provides this functionality with a future firmware update.

Still, this one critique aside, it’s great to have EQ flexibility on the QC45. There’s no denying that their default tuning is really well-balanced, but sometimes, balanced just isn’t what you want. For fans of bass, being able to pump the low end is a welcome addition, while those who listen to podcasts might just want to avail themselves of the treble boost mode to sharpen up the sound of voices.

I also like the fact that these EQ changes don’t rely on the Bose Music app to work. Once you set your preferred sound, that’s what you’ll hear from your mobile phone, a connected computer, or any other wired or wireless device if you keep the headphones powered on. Sadly, there’s no way to hold onto the customized settings when you turn them off and simply use them as a passive set of wired headphones — they need to be able to engage the onboard digital circuitry to process the EQ parameters.

Editors' Recommendations

Simon Cohen
Contributing Editor, A/V
Simon Cohen covers a variety of consumer technologies, but has a special interest in audio and video products, like…
Bose updates speakers and soundbars with Chromecast built-in
bose solo 5 tv soundbar walmart deal  s

We've been pretty impressed with Bose's collection of smart speakers and soundbars, especially their ability to connect seamlessly to Apple products via AirPlay 2. But because these products haven't included Google's Chromecast Wi-Fi audio streaming protocol, Android users have gotten the short end of the streaming stick. On February 8, that changed, thanks to a software update delivered by Bose through its Bose Music app that adds Chromecast built-in. The update is available to those who live in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the U.K., and the U.S.

The news that Bose products were slated to get this update initially came from Google in January 2022 as part of its virtual Better Together with Android and Beyond presentation at CES 2022, which included improvements to Google Fast Pair and other Android-specific advances. Bose was the only company Google mentioned by name, but it promised to also bring Chromecast built-in "to more brands."

Read more
Zvox’s latest dialogue-clarifying ANC headphones are just $70
Zvox AV52 ANC Headphones.

Zvox has announced its latest active noise canceling (ANC) wireless headphones, the $70 AV52, which offer better reduction of outside sounds versus the earlier AV50 model, according to the company. The headphones come in black, white, blue, and rose and are available starting December 21 at

The AV52 include Zvox's AccuVoice technology, which it has adapted from hearing aids. It's the same dialogue-enhancing tech that Zvox used on its first headphones, the AV50, and its many TV speakers. Zvox's algorithms attempt to identify speech and vocals so that they can be emphasized over the background sounds, making them easier to hear.

Read more
Should you buy Bose QC 45 headphones on Black Friday 2021?
bose announces quiet comfort 45 headphones qc45 case

Is Black Friday a good time to go shopping for deals on the Bose QuietComfort 45 (QC 45) noise-canceling wireless headphones? Absolutely. Bose is one of those companies that only rarely offers discounts on its products, but Black Friday is one of those events. The best Black Friday deals can be had on a wide variety of products, but for our purposes, it's the best Black Friday headphone deals that matter. This is where you'll find the best Bose headphone deals, including the QC 45.

It's also worth checking out major retailers directly to see what kind of deals they have:

Read more