THIS WEEK'S SPONSOR:

Boom 3D

Enjoy Immersive Audio on Your Mac


AirPods Max First Impressions Roundup

In the wake of this week’s AirPods Max announcement, Apple provided the premium wireless headphones to a handful of YouTubers and media outlets. Nobody had even a full day with the AirPods Max, so none of these are full reviews, but they do provide a closer look at the headphones and some valuable first impressions.

Matthew Panzarino of TechCrunch was impressed with the sound quality but warned of the sturdy design:

There is a tradeoff here that I feel I must mention even in this early review, though: These things are heavy. If you do not like heavy headphones, do not buy the AirPod Max.

All of the reviewers seemed impressed with the sound quality of the headphones, including The Verge’s Nilay Patel:

Sound-wise, I’ve had fun listening to the AirPods Max for a few hours — they’re crisp and bright, with a pleasingly wider soundstage than my Sony headphones, and no distortion at all, even at max volume.

Comparisons to wireless headphones from Sony and Bose were also common, but Marques Brownlee questioned whether that was the right comparison, arguing that contrasting the AirPods Max to higher-end headphones might be more meaningful.

The AirPods Max case was raised as a frequent downside by reviewers who compared to a purse, a bra, and even a butt. Another downside depending on how you might use the AirPods Max is the lack of a cable in the box to connect to airplane entertainment systems and other audio sources. Apple offers a 3.5mm to Lightning cable separately for $35.

Be sure to check out the videos published on YouTube that I’ve linked below too. They’re an excellent way to get a better sense of the design details of the AirPods Max.

I’m curious to read and watch full reviews of the AirPods Max after reviewers have had time to use them for more extended periods and in different settings. For now, though, the first impressions provide a nice introduction to what the AirPods Max can do and what some of their limitations are.

Unlock More with Club MacStories

Founded in 2015, Club MacStories has delivered exclusive content every week for over six years.

In that time, members have enjoyed nearly 400 weekly and monthly newsletters packed with more of your favorite MacStories writing as well as Club-only podcasts, eBooks, discounts on apps, icons, and services. Join today, and you’ll get everything new that we publish every week, plus access to our entire archive of back issues and downloadable perks.

The Club expanded in 2021 with Club MacStories+ and Club Premier. Club MacStories+ members enjoy even more exclusive stories, a vibrant Discord community, a rotating roster of app discounts, and more. And, with Club Premier, you get everything we offer at every Club level plus an extended, ad-free version of our podcast AppStories that is delivered early each week in high-bitrate audio.

Choose the Club plan that’s right for you:

  • Club MacStories: Weekly and monthly newsletters via email and the web that are brimming with app collections, tips, automation workflows, longform writing, a Club-only podcast, periodic giveaways, and more;
  • Club MacStories+: Everything that Club MacStories offers, plus exclusive content like Federico’s Automation Academy and John’s Macintosh Desktop Experience, a powerful web app for searching and exploring over 6 years of content and creating custom RSS feeds of Club content, an active Discord community, and a rotating collection of discounts, and more;
  • Club Premier: Everything in from our other plans and AppStories+, an extended version of our flagship podcast that’s delivered early, ad-free, and in high-bitrate audio.