With all the travel I've been doing lately, I splurged today on a pair of QuietComfort® 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling® headphones (over 180,000 miles this year and another 10,000 mile round trip to Germany next week).
These are the latest and greatest in sound control from Bose, and my first pair of noise canceling headphones. The other one I considered buying was the new digital headset from Sony, but after reading numerous reviews on Amazon I concluded that the Bose headphones had better overall noise reduction, quality, and battery life - and they were also $100 cheaper than the Sony's.
To properly test the noise reduction capabilities of these Bose headphones, I took them with me on my bus ride commute home. It was a 45 minute bus ride from downtown Portland, and I sat in the back right next to the noisy engine compartment.
Imagine a loud revving diesel engine, squeeky brakes, doors opening and closing - you get the picture. Plenty of noise.
The Bose QC 15 headphones are very comfortable with an around-ear design, and I didn't realize just how well they were doing until I turned them off and was hit with a blast of engine noise.
They also make music sound better because they filter out much of the external background noises, meaning you don't have to crank up the volume to hear deep bass and crisp treble.