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Which one to chose: Bose QC3 or QC15?

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Old Aug 3, 10, 4:03 pm
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Question Which one to chose: Bose QC3 or QC15?

A week ago, my beloved pair of Bose Quiet Comfort 3, Acoustic Noise Cancelling headphones broke down. It happened for no reason at all, I was listening to music on my computer, and all of a sudden I was starting to hear a cracking noise in the right earcup, and moments later it just died. I checked the manual for troubleshooting, but nothing worked.

So earlier today, I took them to the store. Since they didn't have any warranty left I had to go with Bose's return policy, gving me 40% off on a new pair. Since I live in Europe, Bose headphones are very very expensive. The QC3 cost USD 600, and the QC15 USD 520. With the discount, they have the same price as in the USA, i.e USD 299 for the QC15 and 349 for the QC3.

I usually use the headphones for noise cancellation when I work, and for listening to music when I make my daily commute to school by train. I've found the QC3 to be a bit weak when it comes to blocking out some of the high pitch sounds. However I do really like them being very small, and they are far more good looking than the QC15. The sound quality is much better too, in my optnion.

The store refused me to trade in my QC3's for a pair of QC15. However they did allow me to buy the QC3 and then directly exchange them for the QC15, frankly though they wouldn't refund me any money. Which means that I'll be paying USD 349 for either one of the two headphones.

So, which one should I chose?
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Old Aug 3, 10, 4:10 pm
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First, I'd try another store. There seems to be quite a disparity between how exchanges are handled. Next, I'd recommend the QC15 over the QC3 -- better sound and better noise cancellation, though the QC15 is an "over the ear" phone and the QC3 is an "on the ear" version.
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Old Aug 3, 10, 4:44 pm
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Originally Posted by PTravel View Post
First, I'd try another store. There seems to be quite a disparity between how exchanges are handled. Next, I'd recommend the QC15 over the QC3 -- better sound and better noise cancellation, though the QC15 is an "over the ear" phone and the QC3 is an "on the ear" version.
Yeah, sadly though we only have one Bose dealership in Sweden, so it'll be a bit difficult. And the man in the register showed me the files with the prodecures of this return policy, so it was quite hard to negotiate with him. I could call Bose internationall and hear what they think?
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Old Aug 3, 10, 4:50 pm
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Originally Posted by LH4116 View Post
Yeah, sadly though we only have one Bose dealership in Sweden, so it'll be a bit difficult. And the man in the register showed me the files with the prodecures of this return policy, so it was quite hard to negotiate with him. I could call Bose internationall and hear what they think?
Will you be in the U.S. soon? A number of U.S. airports have Bose concessions in them and are, from what I understand, very liberal on exchanges.
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Old Aug 4, 10, 10:12 am
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Having done my own research into the QC-15's in recent weeks I'd recommend OP search under "Bose" in the Travel Technology forum as comparisons and reviews are numerous.

FWIW I would opt for the QC-15's but that's just MHO.
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Old Aug 11, 10, 11:17 am
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Just to throw out another option... I had the original Bose QC headphones, and what always bothered me was they just cancelled airplane engine noise (so you could hear the baby crying behind you even more clearly).

I got some in-ear Shure 'phones (forget the model number) that are basically an earplug with an embedded speaker.

Sound better than Bose, cheaper, lighter and don't need batteries, AND you don't hear babies or annoying conversations. I think several companies make a similar thing and they might be worth investigating. I've loved them way more than my bulky old Bose.
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Old Dec 3, 10, 8:53 am
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Originally Posted by PTravel View Post
Will you be in the U.S. soon? A number of U.S. airports have Bose concessions in them and are, from what I understand, very liberal on exchanges.
How does this work? I have a dog-eared pair of QC3s that still work fine, though the leather is tearing etc. Will they offer me the 40% discount to trade it in for a new pair of QC3, or perhaps a QC15? Or does it have to be "not working properly"?
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Old Dec 3, 10, 8:59 am
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Originally Posted by Sankaps View Post
How does this work? I have a dog-eared pair of QC3s that still work fine, though the leather is tearing etc. Will they offer me the 40% discount to trade it in for a new pair of QC3, or perhaps a QC15? Or does it have to be "not working properly"?
It has to be not working properly, but that is a very subjective call. For example, if you were to say, "Sometimes there is a crackling sound in the right ear," they won't bother doing any testing to find out. They'll offer you a "trade in," which could be either a QC3 or a QC15, your choice (and, as I recall, at different prices). Note that some Bose retail outlet managers are jerks and will deny the existence of the trade-up program. If so, just go to another one retail outlet.
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Old Dec 3, 10, 9:30 am
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Originally Posted by PTravel View Post
It has to be not working properly, but that is a very subjective call. For example, if you were to say, "Sometimes there is a crackling sound in the right ear," they won't bother doing any testing to find out. They'll offer you a "trade in," which could be either a QC3 or a QC15, your choice (and, as I recall, at different prices). Note that some Bose retail outlet managers are jerks and will deny the existence of the trade-up program. If so, just go to another one retail outlet.
Excellent, thanks! And is the trade-in discount a standard 40%, or can that vary too by outlet?
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Old Dec 6, 10, 5:10 am
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Originally Posted by LH4116 View Post
A week ago, my beloved pair of Bose Quiet Comfort 3, Acoustic Noise Cancelling headphones broke down. It happened for no reason at all, I was listening to music on my computer, and all of a sudden I was starting to hear a cracking noise in the right earcup, and moments later it just died. I checked the manual for troubleshooting, but nothing worked.

So earlier today, I took them to the store. Since they didn't have any warranty left I had to go with Bose's return policy, gving me 40% off on a new pair. Since I live in Europe, Bose headphones are very very expensive. The QC3 cost USD 600, and the QC15 USD 520. With the discount, they have the same price as in the USA, i.e USD 299 for the QC15 and 349 for the QC3.

I usually use the headphones for noise cancellation when I work, and for listening to music when I make my daily commute to school by train. I've found the QC3 to be a bit weak when it comes to blocking out some of the high pitch sounds. However I do really like them being very small, and they are far more good looking than the QC15. The sound quality is much better too, in my optnion.

The store refused me to trade in my QC3's for a pair of QC15. However they did allow me to buy the QC3 and then directly exchange them for the QC15, frankly though they wouldn't refund me any money. Which means that I'll be paying USD 349 for either one of the two headphones.

So, which one should I chose?
Do you have to have Bose? Do you have to have circumaural/supra-aural headphones? If not, Shure and Etymotics make well-respected in-ear headphones
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Old Dec 6, 10, 4:53 pm
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what I use actually is a pair of MIE2i Bose earbuds and I simply cover them with QC3s or QC15s to achieve noise cancellation.
Actually in this scenario with the QC15's, I get 4 points of noise blockage, the QC15's physical blockage, the QC15's external filter, the QC15's internal filter, and the MIE2i's physical blockage. Sounds a bit wasteful but I already have the MIE2i earbuds, and they have the mic and remote control, and I already have the QC15s, so why not combine them both and get the ultimate usage/noise blocking combo?
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Old Dec 10, 10, 7:55 am
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it varies by what you are trading in

Originally Posted by Sankaps View Post
Excellent, thanks! And is the trade-in discount a standard 40%, or can that vary too by outlet?
The Bose store near me has a chart that shows what you pay based on what you trade it. In my case it was more like 66% off the new price. I have the Q15's now and they work well for me.
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