Are AirPods Max Worth It?

Ali Mohammadi

black wireless headphones on white desk

The debate over whether Apple’s AirPods Max are worth their high price is still ongoing. Since their release, many people who care about sound quality and casual listeners have been thinking about whether they are really worth the money. The headphones combine fancy design with advanced audio technology, setting a high standard for wireless listening devices. They have top-notch active noise cancellation and a sound quality that has been widely praised. But they also have a high price, which makes people wonder if they’re really worth it.

Apple has made the AirPods Max into a luxury item among wireless headphones. Their build quality shows this, with materials and craftsmanship that suggest they are sturdy and comfortable. They are not just practical—the headphones offer special features like spatial audio, which adds new dimensions to the listening experience. Buying the AirPods Max is not just about the sound—it’s about the whole deal of what these wireless headphones represent in the Apple product world.

white and silver round pendant
Airpods Max

Evaluating the AirPods Max: A Comprehensive Look

Sound Quality and Active Noise Cancellation (ANC)

The AirPods Max deliver impressive sound quality with rich detail and a wide soundstage. Their Active Noise Cancellation effectively blocks out external noise, making them ideal for travel or noisy environments.

Comfort and Design

While stylish and well-built, the AirPods Max are heavier than some competitors. The mesh canopy headband offers good breathability, but some users might find them less comfortable for extended wear.

Battery Life

With up to 20 hours of listening time with ANC enabled, the AirPods Max offer decent battery life for wireless headphones. However, some competitors offer longer playback times.

Features and Ecosystem Integration

The AirPods Max seamlessly integrate with Apple devices, offering features like automatic switching, spatial audio for immersive sound, and easy access to Siri. However, Android users might miss out on some of these benefits.


The AirPods Max are among the priciest wireless headphones on the market. Their premium price tag might be a deterrent for budget-conscious consumers.

Alternatives to Consider

  • Sony WH-1000XM5: Offers excellent noise cancellation and sound quality, with a more comfortable design for some users.
  • Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700: Known for their exceptional noise cancellation and sleek design.
  • Sennheiser Momentum 3 Wireless: Provides high-quality audio and a stylish aesthetic.

Who Should Buy the AirPods Max?

The AirPods Max are a good choice for:

  • Apple users: Those who want seamless integration with their Apple devices and prioritize the Apple ecosystem.
  • Audiophiles: Individuals who value high-fidelity sound and effective noise cancellation.
  • Style-conscious consumers: People who appreciate premium design and materials.

Who Should Consider Alternatives?

  • Budget-minded buyers: Those seeking more affordable options with comparable features.
  • Android users: Individuals who won’t fully benefit from the Apple-specific features.
  • Comfort seekers: People who prioritize lightweight and comfortable headphones for extended wear.

Overall Assessment

The AirPods Max offer a premium audio experience with excellent sound quality, effective noise cancellation, and seamless integration with Apple devices. However, their high price and heavier build might not suit everyone. Consider your priorities and budget before making a decision.


Drivers40mm Apple-designed dynamic drivers
Battery lifeUp to 20 hours listening time (ANC enabled)
ConnectivityBluetooth 5.0
Weight384.8 grams
Additional featuresActive Noise Cancellation, Transparency mode, Spatial audio

Remember, the best headphones for you depend on your individual needs and preferences. Research thoroughly and try out different models if possible before making a purchase.

Key Takeaways

  • AirPods Max combine high-quality sound with Apple’s signature design.
  • Their price reflects luxury status within the wireless headphone market.
  • Unique features like spatial audio enhance the user experience.

Design and Build Quality

Apple’s AirPods Max showcase a premium design marked by durable materials and attention to detail.

Material and Comfort

AirPods Max feature a stainless steel headband with a knit mesh canopy designed to distribute weight and reduce on-head pressure. The ear cups are made of aluminum, which balances the need for a lightweight feel with the robustness of metal. For ear comfort, memory foam ear cushions conform to the individual’s ear shape, enhancing the overall comfort for prolonged use.

Functionality and Controls

The functional aspect of the AirPods Max is also user-friendly. The Digital Crown, inspired by the Apple Watch, serves as the main control for volume adjustments, track control, phone calls, and activating Siri. This ease of control complements the physical design, maintaining the sleek aesthetics of the headphones while offering intuitive functionality.

Audio Performance and Features

AirPods Max bring a notable audio quality with features designed for an immersive sound experience.

Sound Quality

AirPods Max house 40mm dynamic drivers that strive to provide rich, deep bass and crisp, clear highs. The audio performance benefits from Adaptive EQ, which adjusts the sound to the fit and seal of the ear cushions. This technology aids in delivering consistent audio quality across various genres of music.

Active Noise Cancellation

The Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) on AirPods Max uses outward-facing microphones to detect and neutralize external noise. Inward-facing microphones measure what you’re hearing, allowing the headphones to counteract any remaining noise for a more isolated listening experience. Transparency mode, meanwhile, lets users hear the surroundings without taking off the headphones, which is convenient in various situations.

Additional Features

Each ear cup contains an Apple H1 chip, facilitating computational audio for features like spatial audio with dynamic head tracking, providing a theater-like experience with supported content. Another feature, Dolby Atmos, offers a surround sound experience that enriches the perception of audio depth. The AirPods Max do not natively support lossless audio; however, they aim to minimize harmonic distortion. These components and features work together to enhance the overall sound and usage experience.