AirPods Max over-the-ear headphones with active noise cancellation launched for US$549
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Apple has slyly made its entry into the Hi-Fi audio market by launching its new AirPods Max over-the-ear headphones. It comes with all the bells and whistles one would expect out of a high-end audio product and a price to match. The AirPods Max will retail at US$549 on Apple's official website. You can pre-order your pair now, and shipping is expected to start on December 14.
The Apple AirPods Max comes with a 40mm Neodymium driver custom-designed by Apple. It uses the same H1 chip found in other Apple audio products and employs what Apple calls 'computational audio' to deliver a superior listening experience. Some of its features include Adaptive EQ (equalizer) that changes dynamically adjust the frequencies of the audio depending on real-time factors like the fit and seal of the headphones. The included Gyroscope and accelerometer can work in tandem with the AirPods Pro Max' H1 chip to deliver a surround sound experience by tracking the user's head movements.
Other AirPods Max features include Active Noise Cancellation (ANC), which is made possible via three microphones dedicated for the task. On the flip side of things, there is what Apple calls a 'Transparency Mode' too. It allows you to be more aware of your surroundings by letting in some ambient noises. Switching between the mode is seamless and made possible via a tap of a button. The included position sensor automatically pauses music when either earcup is turned or when the headphones are taken off.
Like regular AirPods, the AirPods Max can switch between compatible Apple devices such as an iMac, MacBook, Apple TV, iPhone, iPad, and iPod. Another exciting feature is the ability to 'share' an audio stream between two sets of AirPods. The AirPods Max also features a 'case sensor' which put the headphones in ultra-low-power mode whenever they are stowed away into the included carrying case.
Apple claims that the AirPods Max can deliver up to 20 hours of battery life with ANC enabled. A cursory glance at the official spec sheet suggests that the headphones can be charged with a Lightning cable directly. Apple has also included a USB-C to Lightning cable inside the box. The headphones even come with an Apple Watch-inspired Crown that can help users adjust volume, change tracks, invoke Siri and the likes. Apple also lets you get a custom engraving on the AirPods Max via its official website.