Today Apple have unveiled their next venture into the personal audio space, filling the gap in their portfolio previously served by their Beats line of products, the Airpods Max.
Among the litany of headline features are Active Noise Cancellation (first brought to market on the Airpods Pro), Spatial Audio, Transparency Mode, Adaptive EQ and all the modern pairing conveniences that come with H1 powered Apple gear (same as the Airpods 2nd Gen and Airpods Pro).
“AirPods are the most popular headphones in the world, beloved for their effortless setup, incredible sound quality, and iconic design. 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.”
The digital crown, first bestowed on us by the Apple Watch makes an appearance here, performing volume/Siri/shuttle controls on the side of the earcup, while possibly the most visually grabbing design element, the “breathable knit mesh canopy” to use Apple’s own words, spanning the headband. A stainless steel headband frame is touted as providing versatile strength and adaptability to a variety of head sizes and shapes.
The memory foam ear cushion combines with a new headband attachment mechanism that promises to distribute ear pressure and create a seal on the wearers ear to bolster audio quality, comfort and Active Noise Cancellation performance. A 40mm driver is featured, with a unique dual neodymium ring magnet motor that Apple say “allows AirPods Max to maintain total harmonic distortion of less than 1 percent across the entire audible range, even at maximum volume”.
Battery life is quoted at 20 Hours while having Spatial Audio and ANC turned on for calls/music or movie playback. A Smart Case is provided which is said to “put AirPods Max in an ultra-low power state that helps to preserve battery charge when not in use”
According to Apple, AirPods Max are available to order starting today for £549 from apple.com/uk and in the Apple Store app in the UK and more than 25 other countries and regions. AirPods Max will begin shipping on Tuesday, December 15, with colours available including space grey, silver, sky blue, green, and pink.