Apple AirPods Max
My birthday present came early. My brother got me a very generous birthday present, the Apple AirPods Max. It retails for S$849 and is available in five colors, Space Grey, Silver, Green, Blue, and Pink.
My brother got me the Blue flagship color. He ordered on 19th February 2021, and the delivery estimate was 6 to 7 weeks, which makes it around 7th to 13th April 2021. He didn’t expect the shipment to be just one week as I received it on 26th February 2021. Maybe someone canceled their order, and they have stock.
It includes a USB-C to Lightning cable since AirPods Max uses Lightning Port.
Apple’s H1 headphone chip powers the AirPods Max, and the chip can be found on each ear cup. There are four sensors on each ear cup, Optical, Position, Case-detect, and Accelerometer. The left ear cup has an additional sensor which is the Gyroscope.
Some features of the AirPods Max:
- Apple-designed dynamic driver
- Active Noise Cancellation
- Transparency mode
- Adaptive EQ
- Spatial audio with dynamic head tracking
AirPods Max has nine microphones. Eight microphones for Active Noise Cancellation and three microphones for voice pickup (two shared with Active Noise Cancellation and one additional microphone).
For most headphones, the headband and ear cups will disintegrate after two to three years because of their materials.
I believe AirPods Max will last longer as the headband is made of mesh and the ear cups are made of fabric.
Apple does sell replacement AirPods Max Ear Cushions but they are expensive, retailing at S$95 for a pair.
Replacement is easy since the ear cups are attached to the AirPods Max magnetically.
The controls and Lightning port are on the right.
As previously mentioned, a USB-C to Lightning cable is provided.
AirPods Max is heavy, measuring almost 385 g and the smart case itself measures about 135 g.
As most reviews have mentioned, the smart case is pretty much useless as it doesn’t offer much protection to the headphones, especially around the headphones band area. I echoed the same sentiments. That is why I am going to get a third-party hard case for the AirPods Max.
I have been using the AirPods Max for a few days now. I also have the Sony WH-1000XM4 Headphones.
For prolong usage of the headphones, Sony WH-1000XM4 wins hands down in the comfort area because it is much lighter, measuring at 254 g vs. 385 g on the AirPods Max. When using the AirPods Max, you will always feel something is on your head due to the weight.
In terms of audio quality, I find both the bass is good, but AirPods Max stands out with clearer and more refined sound. Coming from a non-audiophile, I can even hear the difference.
I can’t find any difference in active noise cancellation. Both the AirPods Max and Sony WH-1000XM4 are good.
AirPods Max wins in terms of audio quality, but Sony WH-1000XM4 wins in terms of comfort.