Apple announces the “AirPods Max” noise-cancelling headphones for $549


Apple on Tuesday announces the “AirPods Max” noise-cancelling headphones for a premium price of $549. The device is the company’s first over-ear headphones carrying the AirPods name, which could mean the end of Beats headphones, maybe. The device will come in five colours including space grey, silver, sky blue, green, and pink, and you can start preordering now.


“With AirPods Max, we are bringing that magical AirPods experience to a stunning over-ear design with high-fidelity audio,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “The custom acoustic design, combined with powerful H1 chips, and advanced software enable AirPods Max to use computational audio to wirelessly deliver the ultimate personal listening experience.”

Design wise, well it looks like an over-ear headphone — because that design cannot be tweaked — but Apple says “every part of AirPods Max is carefully crafted to provide exceptional acoustic performance for each user.” Apple went ahead to gush about the AirPods Max’s stainless steel headband frame and it’s flexibility — and how it’ll fit every head size and shape — the breathable “knit mesh” canopy and how the headphone does not add weight to your head while in use.


Here’s how Apple describes the AirPods Max design:

From the canopy to the ear cushions, every part of AirPods Max is carefully crafted to provide exceptional acoustic performance for each user. The breathable knit mesh canopy, spanning the headband, is made to distribute weight and reduce on-head pressure. The stainless steel headband frame provides strength, flexibility, and comfort for a wide variety of head shapes and sizes. Telescoping headband arms smoothly extend and stay in place to maintain the desired fit.

Each ear cup attaches to the headband through a revolutionary mechanism that balances and distributes ear cup pressure, and allows it to independently pivot and rotate to fit the unique contours of a user’s head. Each ear cushion uses acoustically engineered memory foam to create an effective seal — a critical factor in delivering immersive sound. The Digital Crown, inspired by Apple Watch, offers precise volume control and the ability to play or pause audio, skip tracks, answer or end phone calls, and activate Siri.


Moving on, the AirPods Max features a 40-mm driver that provides “rich, deep bass, accurate mid-ranges, and crisp, clean high-frequency extension so every note can be heard,” according to Apple. And because it’s an AirPods basically, it also comes with some popular AirPods features like “Adaptive EQ, Active Noise Cancellation, Transparency mode, and spatial audio.” The AirPods Max also features Apple’s H1 chip in each ear cup and uses computational technology to deliver high quality sounds.

Battery wise, the AirPods Max is packed with up to 20 hours of “high-fidelity” audio, regular talk time or movie playback with Active Noise Cancellation and spatial audio enabled, Apple said. It also comes with smart features like the ability to detect when someone wears it — using the “optical and position sensors.” AirPods Max also pauses when it’s been taken off or when a user lifts up one ear cup. And like it’s smaller siblings, the AirPods Max also comes with its own Smart Case that puts it into an “ultralow power state” to preserve battery when not in use.


The device is now available for preorder as stated above and will start shipping on Tuesday, December 15th. Also the AirPods Max is compatible with devices running iOS 14.3 or later, iPadOS 14.3 or later, macOS Big Sur 11.1 or later, watchOS 7.2 or later, or tvOS 14.3 or later.

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