Which One is Better: JBL or Bose?

It’s a question that has been asked for years, and the answer is not always clear. Both companies make high-quality audio products, but they have different strengths and weaknesses.

Nowadays, It’s no secret that people have strong opinions about audio equipment. Some swear by JBL while others prefer Bose. 

But which one is really better? To answer that question, we need to take an in-depth look at these two popular brands to get a better idea of which one is right for you.

Is JBL Better Than Bose?

The main difference between the JBL and Bose is its reasonable price tag. Besides that, JBL offers many other specs like solidly dependable noise-canceling, good audio quality, decent ANC, dynamic, punchy sound, a classic design, and a comfortable fit.

However, Bose offers a suite of features not available on the JBL. The Bose noise-canceling is excellent, and it offers a huge range of customizable options and accessories not available anywhere else. 

Bose also offers excellent sound quality and a comfortable fit but at a high price tag.

Here I am going to compare the Bose QuietComfort 45 with JBL Live 660 NC.

Background of JBL and Bose:


JBL is a well-known audio brand that is owned by Harman International. The business was established in 1980 and is now owned by Samsung, which also owns AKG, Harman Kardon, and Mark Levinson.

JBL Live 660 NC

Nowadays JBL is an exclusive premium brand of Harman International, which produces a wide range of audio products for both home and car audio systems, such as noise-canceling headphones, wireless earbuds, car audio boosters, amplifiers, and speakers.

So, in a nutshell, you could say that it has a lot of expertise when it comes to excellent sound quality.


Bose is an American company, that produces premium-quality audio products. The Company was founded by Dr. Amar Gopal Bose in 1964. He was a Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Bose QC 45

His research on psychoacoustics – investigating how sound could be modified to meet listeners’ needs – helped Bose develop highly accurate speakers that can recreate, as closely as possible, the original performance of music or other content.

It still holds good for its latest Headphones series, namely QuietComfort 25 and 35 which are being marketed globally through various online retailers and custom installers.

Bose QuietComfort 45 vs. JBL Live 660 NC: General Comparison

Bose QuietComfort 45JBL Live 660 NC
Release Date1st September 202128th July 2021
Price about $329.00about $199.95
PredecessorBose QuietComfort 35 IIJBL Live 650BT NC
TypeOver-ear Wireless HeadphonesOver-ear Wireless Headphones
ChipQualcomm QCC5127 Bluetooth audio SoCX-Powers AC107 dual-channel ADC chip
Battery life24 hours, 49 minutes40 hours
Charging CableUSB-C charging cableUSB-C charging cable
Noise cancellationYesYes
Ambient noise modeYesYes
Live ListenYesYes
Spatial AudioNoYes
ControlsMulti-function ButtonsMulti-function Buttons
ColorsBlack, White SmokeBlack, White, Blue
CaseUSB-C Charging CaseUSB-C Charging Case
Weight240.9 gram265 gram
MicrophonesTiny microphones with one external microphoneIntegrated mic
Voice assistantYes (Native voice assistant)Yes (Google)

JBL Live 660 NC vs Bose QuietComfort 45: Price and value

Most Bose headphones are much more expensive than other manufacturers, but recently Bose launched the cheaper version of their latest noise-canceling headphone model which is Bose QuietComfort 45. 

which comes in the market with a lower MSRP tag as compared with its predecessors: about $329. They come in two color options Black and Smoke White. 

Whereas the JBL Live 660 NC is listed at about $199.95, which is much cheaper than the Bose QuietComfort-45. However, at this price range, it offers most of the features you would expect from a noise-canceling headphone like the Bose QC-45, Jabra Elite 85h, Bose 700, Sony WH-1000XM4, AirPods Max, and more.

So the winner is the JBL Live 660 NC.

Bose QuietComfort 45 vs. JBL Live 660 NC: Design and Comfort Fit

Bose QuietComfort 45JBL Live 660 NC
EarCup DesignOver-Ear (Circumaural)Over-Ear (Circumaural)
LED IndicatorYesYes
Dimensions (H x W x D)7.25  x 6 x 3 inches8.8 x 8.2 x 3.2 inches
Weight240.9 gram265 grams
Headphone MaterialGlass-filled nylon reinforces on the headband and cast-metal hingemesh fabric coating on the headband and metal plate frame
EarCup Materialleatherplastic ear cups with faux leather Padding

From the design point of view, The QuietComfort 45 is very similar to its predecessor, the Bose QuietComfort 35 ii. It’s essentially the same foldable, minimalistic design, but with a few modifications.

The first one is the metal hinges that give it a bit of weight and also make it sturdier. Aha, but this wasn’t enough for Bose engineers.

 They’ve stuffed more mics in each ear cup so now you can use a native voice assistant to give voice commands without having to touch the phone. The headband padding has been slightly modified and is now made of leather instead of genuine suede.

However, when it comes to comfort, the Bose QC 45 is more comfortable to wear for longer sessions of listening. 

The pliable frame offers you the flexibility to fit in everywhere when there is no space even for big headphones. Their lightweight also makes them fit perfectly.

Whereas, The JBL Live 660 NC is designed by quality standards. The build quality is a mixture of plastic, aluminum, canvas, and leather which makes the exterior design of Live 660 NC stylish and attractive.

Moreover, the pliable headbands and Frames give much more comfort while wearing the headphones. The ear cups are durable and well-cushioned for a perfect blend of noise cancellation and imaging. 

However, the clamping force was a bit high for my taste as it got uncomfortable after prolonged use, which also produced more warmth and sweat.

So a strong clamp force is actually good because it will fall out less when you wear them during running or workouts.

JBL Live 660 NC: Controls. Bose QuietComfort 45 vs

Bose QuietComfort 45JBL Live 660 NC
OS Compatibility Not OS specificNot OS specific
Ease Of UseDecentDecent
Feedback  OkayGood
Call/Music Control  YesYes
Volume ControlYesYes
Channel Mixing NoNo
Noise Canceling Control On/OffOn/Off
Talk-Through On/OffOn/Off
Additional Controls  Voice AssistantVoice Assistant

This time Bose uses the same button layout and functions as with the QuietComfort 35. The only thing that changed is the Action Button which is now only used to turn the noise canceling off or on.

The QuietComfort 45’s lack of touch controls and motion detection caused it to fall behind the competition.

However, the JBL Live 660 NC comes with physical buttons and touch controls. The multifunctional button on the right earcup has all the controls, including NFC, playback, volume rockers, call management, and digital assistance.

While there is the Bluetooth/Ambient Aware button, to help you to toggle between listening modes.

Moreover, Google Assistant, Alexa, and Siri are supported. However, if you want to use Siri on an Apple device like the iPhone 12, you’ll need to change the Voice Assistant setting to default.

Bose QuietComfort 45 vs. JBL live 660 NC: Active noise cancellation 

Bose QuietComfort 45JBL Live 660 NC
Active Noise CancellationYesYes
Passive Noise ReductionYesYes
Transparent MonitoringYesYes
Mic Active Noise CancellationYesYes
Mic Passive Noise ReductionYesYes

The Bose QuietComfort 45 comes with two pre-programmed settings: Quiet and Aware. In quiet mode, you would experience the standard ANC, just like the premium models of Bose.

With Few High-end and low, mid ranges frequencies being subtracted from your music, you will enjoy a quieter and more isolated experience wherever you go.

However, in QC 45, there is no adjustment button for ANC, and also lacks two modes (Low and High) that are found in QuietComfort 35.

Aware mode on the other hand is quite effective for instances when you need to stay alert of your surroundings.

However, the ANC in JBL headphones is not that effective which you found in premium Bose and Beats by Dre noise-canceling headphones. In their new headphone, live 660 NC, they have improved the ANC quality, which blocks about 80% of ambient noise in the environment.

Moreover, the improved ANC system in live 660 NC is now more capable to block the lower and mid-range frequencies noise like shuttle engines, kitchen appliances, door buzzers, and some other common distractions.

Ambient Aware or the transparency mode in JBL’s live 660 NC provides you the ability to instantly let in the desired amount of noise for you to stay aware and communicate with people around you.

The Bose QuietComfort 45 is the clear winner in terms of active noise cancellation. Its two pre-programmed settings, Quiet and Aware, provide an excellent ANC experience that beats that of the JBL live 660 NC.

Bose QuietComfort 45 vs. JBL Live 660 NC: Battery life 

Bose QuietComfort 45JBL Live 660 NC
Battery TypeLithium-IonLithium-Ion Polymer (LiPo)
Battery Life24 Hours (BT+ANC)Maximum music playtime with ANC off 50 hours and With on 40 hours 
Charge Time2 Hours2 hours 
Quick Charging Times15 Minutes for 3 Hours10 Minutes for 4 Hours
Battery charge methodUSB Type-CUSB Type-C
Charging PortPinPin

The new QuietComfort 45 is an incredible improvement over the old QuietComfort line in terms of battery life. 

However, the QC 45 headphones offer a battery life of 24 hours, which is really good, and they also come with a quick-charging feature that allows you to get 3 hours of listening time after just 15 minutes of charging. 

However, I’m thoroughly impressed with the battery life on the JBL Live 660 NC. I can get up to 50 hours of music playback without ANC turned on, and up to 40 hours with it on.

That’s more than enough for even the longest of trips! The quick charging times are also really impressive, 10 minutes gets me 4 hours of use which is more than enough for a full day.

The winner is the JBL Live 660 NC.

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In the end, the question is, Which One is Better: JBL or Bose? is subjective and depends on individual preferences. Both JBL and Bose offer high-quality sound systems with their unique strengths.

JBL might appeal to those who prefer robust and punchy bass, while Bose is known for its rich and balanced sound quality. It’s essential to consider your specific needs and preferences when choosing between JBL and Bose.


Are Bose speakers more durable than JBL?

Both brands are known for their durability, but the specific model and how the speaker is used can also impact its longevity. It’s always a good idea to check the warranty and customer reviews for insights on durability.

Which brand offers more variety, JBL or Bose?

Both JBL and Bose offer a wide range of products catering to different needs, from portable speakers to home theater systems. Your choice should depend on your specific needs and the features you value most.

Is JBL cheaper than Bose?

Generally, JBL products tend to be more affordable than Bose, but prices can vary depending on the specific model and features. Remember, the best value for you depends on your budget and the features you’re looking for.

Which brand is better for home theater systems, JBL or Bose?

Both brands offer excellent home theater systems. Bose is often praised for its immersive sound experience, while JBL is loved for its powerful audio performance. Consider the size of your room and your viewing habits when choosing a home theater system.

Can I connect my JBL speaker to a Bose speaker?

Typically, speakers from different brands can’t be connected directly. However, using a third-party device or software might make it possible. Always check the compatibility of devices before attempting to connect them.