In my book, having a pair of noise-cancelling headphones (or earbuds) is all but required now, whether you’re working from home, or you’re back in the open-plan office, cutting noise down is great. They block out the noise from hitting your ears, and good ones also help keep the background noise from getting through on your calls. While I’ve been a big fan of the Anker Q35 for the price/performance intersection, Anker just recently released some new headphones (and earbuds) that are going a bit more upmarket. Meet the Anker Space collection.
The first one in the new collection – the Soundcore Space A40 – is something we’ve not seen from them before, a pair of earbuds. I mean, sure, we’ve seen them with earbuds before (see here, for instance), but not paired up with a set of over-ear headphones. Now, on one hand, these have a lot of the same things that many wireless earbuds offer – a compact size, a charging case (though this one can charge itself wirelessly), a whole bunch of codec support, and so on. So what separates these?
Well, for the Soundcore Space A40, it’s going to be the guts that are inside that start making the difference. With these, you’re getting adaptive noise cancelling, and a good dose of battery life – 10 hours between charges, or 8 hours with the ANC on. You’ve got all the standard modes (including transparency mode to hear what’s going on around you), and then the real kicker is the associated app. On your smartphone, you’re able to tune and customize how things sound in your ears, which is something that you don’t think you want or need – until you use a pair of earbuds without it. Earbuds aren’t for all day (in my book) but they’re great for exercising as well as the commute. While the $99.99 price is a bit higher, there’s a lot of good things packed into these little buds.
Now, if you’re like me, over-ear headphones are the way to go for all-day comfort and usability, not to mention the extended battery life. That’s where the Soundcore Space Q45 come in. While they look a good bit like the Q35 that came before them, I can see some subtle changes. For one, the pivots from the headband to the earcups have changed. Secondly, it looks like they’ve updated how the headband extends, which was actually a weak point for the earlier models, as there could be some seperation over time.
In terms of the overall functionality, the Soundcore Space Q45 should offer everything that has come in the series before it. As I’ve seen from the Q20 to the Q30 to the Q35, each revision has offered improvements, both in comfort as well as how good the noise cancellation actually is. Presumably, the same has happened here, though it seems they’ve made ANC even better, along with the capability to tune how it works with your environment (courtesy of the associated app).
The bigger surprise with the Soundcore Space Q45 is the pricing. For the first time, we’re seeing a Q headphone hit three digits – in this case $149.99 is the new price tag. That’s a big step up from the brand that has tended to focus on offering great bang for the buck. Are they worth it? It seems they may be, but we’re working with the brand to get a sample in to check it out. soundcore.com
Details from Anker
|Soundcore Space A40||Soundcore Space Q45|
|Price||US $99.99 DE €99.99 UK £89.99 CA $129.99||US $149.99 DE €149.99 UK £139.99 CA $199.99|
|Product Dimensions (Length*Wideth*Height)||earbuds: 68*44*28mm charging case: 108*108*49.5mm||161mm* 88mm * 190mm|
|Net Weight||earbud:4.9g x 2 charging case:48.4g||292g|
|Bluetooth Version||BT Ver. 5.2||BT Ver. 5.3|
|Supported Bluetooth Profiles||AVRCP1.6、A2DP1.3、HFP1.7||AVRCP1.6、A2DP1.3、HFP1.7|
|Supported Bluetooth Codec||AAC, SBC, LDAC||AAC、SBCL, DAC|
|Type of Noise Cancelling||Adaptive Noise Cancelling||Adaptive Noise Cancelling|
|Total Music Play Time @ 60% volume|
(Playtime varies according to volume level
and audio content)
|10H / 50H with charging case(ANC off) 8H / 40H with charging case(ANC on) LDAC on (Normal): 6H/30H LDAC on (ANC on): 5H/25H||65H (ANC off) 50H (ANC on) LDAC on (Normal): 45H LDAC on (ANC on): 37H|
|Battery Type||Lithium polymer battery||Lithium polymer battery|
|Battery Capacity||Earbuds:53mAh*2 Charging Case:800mAh||750mAh|
|Battery voltage||earbuds:3.4-4.4V;charging case:3.4-4.4V||3.8V|
|Battery Power||earbuds:0.024W;charging case:0.067W||2.85|
|Charging time (from 0 to 100%)||2H||2H|
|Fast charging||10-Minute Charge =4-Hour Playtime||5-Minute Charge =4-Hour Playtime|
|Type of Driver||Double-layer diaphragm drivers||Double-layer diaphragm drivers|
|sensitivity/SPL||104dB||117dB @1KHz 1mW|
|LDAC Compatibility||Y (Android Only)||Y (Android Only)|
|Transparency||Y, customizable||Y, customizable|
|Voice Assistant Compatibility||Y||Y|