Review: Bose Sleepbuds II provide a sleep mask for your ears

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Bose Sleepbuds II with noise-masking are a snug and splendid method to get night time’s sleep, although one that’s supplied at a reasonably excessive premium.

We need not stress the significance of night time’s sleep. Even should you ignore the numerous research on the topic, we have all skilled the distinction between feeling bright-eyed and bushy-tailed after an ideal night time of sleep and feeling groggy and worn-down after too little.

The query is much less whether or not you need a good night time’s sleep and extra how do you get one.

Whereas there are as many causes for poor sleep as there are baggage beneath an insomniac’s eyes, Bose is tackling one of many major causes which are all-too-familiar to anybody with loud neighbors, a barking canine subsequent door, or a loud night breathing associate. Bose Sleepbuds II takes the corporate’s a long time of expertise and applies them to the issue of noise-based sleep disruptions.

This is not Bose’s first try, as the corporate launched its first Sleepbuds in 2018, however whereas they confirmed promise out of the gates, they’d quite a few quality-control issues. Customers complained of inconsistent battery life, intermittent shutdowns, squeaking sounds, and buds that would not absolutely cost.

The next yr, Bose went as far as pulling them from retailer cabinets and providing refunds to anybody who had purchased them. The brand new model, launching this fall, goals to treatment these issues with a brand new battery, circuit board, and inside supplies, together with a thinner design.

Bose Sleepbuds II options

Bose Sleepbuds II and the ear tip

Many individuals affiliate Bose with its active-noise-canceling tech, however the firm opted to give attention to noise-masking somewhat than noise-canceling for these sleep earbuds. Bose Well being Division head Steve Romine defined, “Bose Sleepbuds II use developments in our proprietary noise-masking know-how as a result of overlaying sound – not canceling it – is a greater answer for sleeping.”

Whereas which may be a PR smokescreen for being unable to squeeze satisfactory noise-canceling tech into this tiny kind issue, we will not argue with the logic of masking being the precise name for at this time’s tech.

Bose additionally opted to not allow you to stream music or different audio out of your iPhone, because it solely connects to your telephone to obtain sounds, settings, and alarms from the companion Bose Sleep app. The iOS app contains 40 noise-masking sounds, together with flowing water, nature scenes, and different tranquil soundscapes.

The app additionally helps you to set and customise alarms, together with quantity and the flexibility to fade in alarm tones progressively. The alarms hit a pleasant stability: sharp sufficient to wake you however with out being overly jarring.

Sleepbuds II Design

These are a lot smaller than typical true-wireless buds, designed not for hours of music-streaming however consolation when mendacity on a pillow. In case you peel off the silicone ideas and take a look at the tiny machine that is still, you see why Bose did not embody ANC or reside streaming from a linked smartphone.

It is a surprise this little machine can do what it does whereas nonetheless having large enough a battery to energy it via the night time.

Bose Sleepbuds II without the ear tip

Bose contains three units of silicone ideas which are practically an identical to these in Bose’s new QuietComfort Earbuds. Every tip has a hook that helps safe the buds in your ears.

The Sleepbuds II have a battery case that holds an additional three hours of cost, which recharges with an included USB-C to USB-A cable. We anticipate most individuals will go away it plugged in on their nightstand, however the case’s extra battery might maybe assist out on a multi-day journey away from energy.

The case has a slide-open cowl and magnets that pull the buds into place, excellent for sleepyheads fumbling round within the early-morning hours.


Bose designed Sleepbuds II for consolation and nailed it, with the bean-like buds rounded and missing any sharp corners. The skinny and rounded design lets the mushy silicone overlaying – and never a protruding piece of tech – outline what you are feeling in your ears.

I am primarily a facet sleeper, and I by no means felt like I had something urgent into my ear whereas the facet of my head sunk into the pillow.

The audio is spectacular, with Bose’s tuning crisp and good for lulling you right into a deep slumber. The soundstage is huge sufficient to really feel much less like listening to headphones and extra like resting your head inside a bubble of flowing water, falling rain, or speeding winds. Bose’s sounds run a large gamut of private desire and frequencies to masks several types of noise.

Battery life has been constantly lengthy, remedying one of many largest complaints from the unique mannequin. Even after eight hours of use at round 75% quantity, the app’s battery indicator nonetheless confirmed round 50% cost left.

Bose guarantees 10 hours per cost, and our use mixed with the remaining battery means that, if something, Bose’s estimates have been conservative.

Bose Sleepbuds II in the ear

I used to be a chief candidate for the Bose Sleepbuds 2 as a result of a neighbor’s outside canine that usually barks when I will mattress. I had already been utilizing a white-noise machine on my bedside desk, however with this canine, I needed to crank the machine as much as uncomfortably excessive volumes, and it nonetheless did not totally drown out the barking.

The Bose Sleepbuds II efficiently masked the barking. I discovered a sound I appreciated, a quantity degree that wasn’t overbearing, and I heard nothing from the canine.

I even eliminated the buds for a second to ensure the barking hadn’t stopped. It most positively hadn’t.

We additionally examined the Sleepbuds with loud night breathing, and the outcomes have been much less convincing than with the outside canine. Deeper masking sounds at a excessive quantity blocked out gentle and average loud night breathing, however the loudest loud night breathing made its manner via.

With the Sleepbuds’ quantity turned as much as the best degree, the lower-frequency sounds did a greater job of masking the loud loud night breathing. Nevertheless, the utmost quantity is probably not snug to listen to via the night time, and there is not any method to regulate the quantity on the buds themselves. To do this, it’s important to open the Bose Sleep app in your telephone.

Bose Sleepbuds II uses magnets to store the earbuds in the charging case

I take advantage of an Apple Watch to trace sleep, and I’ve averaged an additional 46 minutes of sleep per night time since utilizing the Sleepbuds, regardless of going to mattress across the identical time. After all, there may very well be different elements at play, so do not take that as scientific proof that it’ll do the identical for you. Nevertheless, I really feel just like the sound masking helps me get to sleep simpler and get up feeling extra refreshed.

We have not run into any of the bugs that plagued the unique mannequin, together with battery or charging issues, squeaks, or cutoffs.

Who Bose Sleepbuds 2 are for

As optimistic as our expertise has been with the product, your sleeplessness will should be a major downside to justify the $249 funding. Contemplating you may get a high quality bedside white-noise machine for $30-40, it is best to solely splurge on the Sleepbuds should you’ve tried exterior noise masking and located it missing on your explicit sleep issues.

In case you’re fighting noises that even a bedside sound masker will not repair, Bose Sleepbuds II are efficient and cozy at doing the one factor they do. We love the consolation, sound, and high quality of masking tracks.

We solely want they ran just a little cheaper, given the product’s singular focus. Additionally, take into account that the very loudest loud night breathing will nonetheless make its manner via.

Bose Sleepbuds II fit snugly within the ear
  • Efficiently masks many noises
  • Extremely snug, even for facet sleepers
  • Three sizes of ear ideas
  • 40 masking sounds with extra on the best way
  • Vast soundstage creates “sleep bubble” impact
  • Battery simply lasts a full night time
  • Magnetic placement in case
  • Solely masks mild-to-moderate loud night breathing
  • $249 is dear for a single-purpose product
  • No energetic noise cancelation
  • No streaming from different apps or customized sounds – solely presets from the Bose Sleep app

Score: 4 out of 5

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