AirPods Max will excite your ears, dazzle your eyes and empty your wallet [Review]

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AirPods Max review: Apple's new noise-canceling headphones truly put the
Apple's new noise-canceling headphones truly put the "pod" in AirPods.
Photo: Lewis Wallace/Cult of Mac

With a sleek design and some sweet Apple magic, AirPods Pro Max headphones look great, sound exciting and reward those in the Apple ecosystem.

However, the hefty $549 price tag, some quirky design decisions and some very real limitations mean they’re not right for absolutely everyone.

AirPods Max: Apple’s new over-ear headphones look fantastic but mighty pricey

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AirPods Max are available to order for $549.
AirPods Max, the first over-the-ear headphones sold under the Apple brand, combine a custom acoustic design with Apple H1 chips and advanced software.
Photo: Apple

Apple expanded its popular AirPods lineup Tuesday, unveiling a new over-the-ear model dubbed AirPods Max.

The high-end headphones promise to deliver “the magic of AirPods” in an all-new design. They boast high-fidelity, spatial audio and active noise cancellation like AirPods Pro. And they come in five colors. They’re available to order today, priced at $549.

Productively work from home with these affordable, smart noise-canceling headphones [Deals]

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Mu Noise Headphones
Listen to your playlists in comfort, full fidelity and sans distractions with these top-notch Bluetooth headphones.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Keeping distractions at bay is harder than ever, especially if you’re working from home. That makes noise-canceling headphones an essential tool for productivity (or just keeping your sanity).

If you don’t already own a set, this is your chance. We’ve got deals on smart noise-canceling headphones that won’t drain your bank account.

Defeat distractions with noise-canceling Bluetooth headphones [Deals]

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BesDio Noise-Cancelling Bluetooth Headphones
Top notch noise cancellation, 30 hour battery life, and total comfort make these the perfect headphones for dodging distractions.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Remote work means lots of potential distractions, even if it’s from the comfort of home. Family, neighbors, the TV in another room — there are plenty of ways to lose focus. So during the COVID-19 lockdown, noise-canceling headphones are an essential way to keep distractions at bay.

AirPods sales spike means total market domination

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AirPods-Pro-vs-AirPods
AirPods and AirPods Pro outsell all rivals by a wide margin.
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

Apple sold almost 60 million AirPods wireless headphones in 2019, according to a market-analysts firm. That’s a dramatic increase from the 35 million the company is estimated to have sold the year before.

And Apple took the lion’s share of 2019 sales of totally wireless (TWS) headsets.

Browse an awesome roundup of Bluetooth headphones under $100 [Deals]

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Wireless Headphones Under $100
We've rounded up some of the best Bluetooth headphones out there, each for well under 100 bucks.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Bluetooth headphones are the best way to enjoy personal audio. Obviously, they’ve got no wires to untangle. And the technology has advanced to the point where they sound as good as cabled alternatives — plus they add tons of additional features.

There are also many models to choose from — including those high-priced new AirPods Pro — so we rounded up some of the best deals we could find. Even better, each one of these great Bluetooth headphones costs well under $100.

Pro or no: Which AirPods should you get?

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AirPods vs. AirPods Pro: Which is better? Feature-packed, or sleek and simple?
Which is better? Feature-packed, or sleek and simple?
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

Apple’s AirPods are brilliant. They’re incredibly convenient, sleek and offer pretty good sound. They also add a layer of functionality you don’t get with many other Bluetooth headphones or earbuds. And I’m not even talking about the new AirPods Pro.

So, now that Apple expanded the AirPods line to include both the standard AirPods, and the pricier (although more feature-packed) AirPods Pro, choosing the right option might not seem so clear. How do you choose the AirPods that are best for your life?

These discounted noise-canceling headphones are perfect for any occasion [Deals]

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Z2 Headphones
This set of over-ear, noise-cancelling headphones last for 35 hours on a single charge.
Photo: Cult of Mac Deals

Few things get quite as much use as our headphones. We use them for music and podcasts on the commute or at the gym, calls at work or at home, or just to watch the YouTube video a friend randomly sends along. No matter where or why, it pays to have a set of headphones that’ll last, and that cut out distractions. We’ve got just that set, at a massive discount.

Soundcore takes 6 shots at AirPods with new earbuds lineup

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The Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro brings high-end audio, thanks to a coaxial driver setup.
The Liberty 2 Pro brings high-end audio, thanks to a coaxial driver setup.
Photo: Soundcore

Soundcore wants to “democratize premium audio” with its new Bluetooth earbuds. The new wireless headphones continue the company’s pursuit of delivering quality products at affordable price points.

“It’s a value proposition for us,” said Soundcore rep Adam Weissman in a demo at the Cult of Mac offices in San Francisco. He showed off two lines of headphones — one for regular audio fans and one for fitness fiends. All the new models deliver features similar to AirPods, but at price points far below Apple’s smash-hit product.