$600 $300 Headphones

Last year I was gifted a pair of headphones for my birthday. I love them. They sound great, have decent battery life, and the noise cancellation is good. That said, I have a few gripes with them.

Before I get to the issues, here's what they look like:

Apple Airpods Max

They're straight out of Jony Ive's incoherent scribbles after a 3-day meth high. No power buttons, no headphone jack, and a tiny internal lighting connector.

Tiny Lightning connector
Image credit https://twitter.com/StellaFudge/status/1351578747653251073/

Okay so time for the gripes:

First and foremost, they have the quality of solid $300 headphones. That would be great, if only they weren't $549 pre-tax.

Second, most people thought that Apple was just trying to scrape together some brand recognition with the name "Airpods Max", but no. They're legitimately Airpods! I know this because sometimes one side will shut down and the other side will continue playing for a minute until it realizes that the other side is missing, at which point they both restart in unison. Thanks Tim Apple.

Another issue is that they only charge at 2.5W. Why?? I have no idea. Plus, they're not updated to use USB-C, so they're stuck on lightning, both inside and out 🙃.

Here's another gripe. Sometimes condensation will form inside, and it will fuck with the ANC, but it sounds just like I need to see an ear doctor because my ear is clogged. In reality, it's the microphone that's clogged... with water!

Condensation inside of an Airpods Max earcup
Image credit https://twitter.com/Mezxxii/status/1346001377714204673

Another gripe is that they get looser with age. I swear they grip my head less tight than they did the day I got them. I think this might be an issue with all headphones, but you would think that with their fancy new headband on their $600 headphones, they would engineer something to fix the issue. They once charged people $999 for an overegnineered monitor stand, so they could at the very least make headphones that grip well.

If you're looking to get headphones, look elsewhere. I love them, and I would consider them if they were $300. Problem is that they're $600. Save yourself the money and go for some Sony XM5s.