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Bose QuietComfort 20 (2013)
Beats Powerbeats3 (2016)
See Top Ranked Canal Earphones

Bose QuietComfort 20 (2013) vs Beats Powerbeats3 (2016)

Analysis:

The Bose QuietComfort 20 (2013) is one of the very best Canal Earphones that one can get for around $280. The Beats Powerbeats3 (2016), however, while a very good choice at its $85 price point, falls just short of being remarkable.

The Bose QuietComfort 20 (2013) has done great in a couple of roundups conducted by highly trusted sources that perform objective in-depth testing, like Rtings, Wirecutter (NYTimes), SoundGuys, and Tom's Guide - it earned the "Best Wired Noise Cancelling Earbuds" title from Rtings, "Bose’s best noise-cancelling earbuds (for Apple devices)" from Wirecutter (NYTimes), and "Best All-Around" from SoundGuys. Any product that's held in high regard by such reliable sources should be considered by anyone that's looking for a Canal Earphone at this price point.

Returning to the Beats Powerbeats3 (2016), it managed to impress reviewers from two sources that are considered to be some of the most highly trusted on the internet, thanks to their in-depth hands-on testing - Rtings and TechGearLab. It performed great in their respective Canal Earphone roundups - it was named "Best Bluetooth Earbuds For iPhone Under $100" by Rtings and "Ranked 3 out of 8" by TechGearLab. That's quite an endorsement, especially coming from such high-quality sources.

Lastly, we averaged out all of the reviews scores that we could find on these two products and compared them to other Canal Earphones on the market. We learned that both of them performed far better than most of their competitors - the overall review average earned by Canal Earphones being 7.4 out of 10, whereas the Bose QuietComfort 20 (2013) and Beats Powerbeats3 (2016) managed averages of 8.0 and 7.6 points, respectively.

Due to the difference in their prices, however, it's important to keep in mind that a direct Bose QuietComfort 20 (2013) vs. Beats Powerbeats3 (2016) comparison might not be entirely fair - some sources don't take value for money into account when assigning their scores and therefore have a tendency to rate more premium products better.

Comparison of expert ratings
Highly Recommended
Recommended
Mentioned
Not Mentioned
SoundGuys
Wirecutter (NYTimes)
PCmag
Rtings
Tom's Guide
Laptop Mag
TechGearLab
Android Authority
CNET
Techradar
Tech. Specs Comparison
Bose QuietComfort 20 (2013)
$249
Beats Powerbeats3 (2016)
$79
Higher than average expert review score
Has average expert review score
Highly recommended by trusted experts
SoundGuys
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Overall
in “Best noise cancelling earbuds” 
Last updated: a month ago
Wirecutter (NYTimes)
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “The Pros and Cons of Bose Noise-Cancelling Headphones” 
Last updated: 20 Sep 2019
Rtings
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Wired Noise Cancelling Earbuds
in “The 6 Best Noise Cancelling Earbuds And In-Ear Headphones - Summer 2020” 
Last updated: 5 days ago
Tom's Guide
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Bose noise-canceling earbuds
in “Best Bose Headphones 2020” 
Last updated: 24 Jul 2019
Android Authority
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Overall
in “What are the best noise cancelling earbuds?” 
Last updated: 3 Mar 2020
Gadget Review
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “Best Noise Cancelling Headphones 2020” 
Gadget Review
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Ranked #3 out of 7
in “Best Earbuds in 2020 (July Reviews)” 
CNET
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “Best noise-canceling headphones of 2020” 
Last updated: 21 May 2020
BestReviews
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “Best Bose Headphones” 
Last updated: a day ago
Wirecutter (NYTimes)
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “The Best Noise-Cancelling Headphones” 
Last updated: 10 Jun 2020
Recommended by trusted experts
Rtings
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Best Bluetooth Earbuds For iPhone Under $100
in “The 6 Best Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds Under $100 – Summer 2020” 
Last updated: a month ago
TechGearLab
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Rated 8.0 out of 10
in “The Best Sports Headphones of 2020” 
Last updated: 12 days ago
Tom's Guide
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Ranked #4 out of 10
in “Beats headphones 2020: Top wireless and wired picks” 
Last updated: 4 Oct 2019
rizknows.com
-
Depth of
analysis
No
In-house
Testing
Runner Up
in “Jaybird Tarah Pro vs Powerbeats 3 Wireless Review” 
Rtings
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Runner Up: Best In-Ear Wireless Headphones Under $100 - Alternative For iPhone
in “The 7 Best Wireless Bluetooth Headphones Under $100 - Summer 2020” 
Last updated: a month ago
TechGearLab
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Rated 7.6 out of 10
in “The Best Bluetooth Earbuds of 2020” 
Last updated: 18 days ago
Wirecutter (NYTimes)
Highly Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “The Best Workout Headphones” 
Last updated: 6 days ago
Good Housekeeping
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “Our expert guide to buying headphones” 
Last updated: 22 Jul 2019
Good Housekeeping
Trusted Source
Depth of
analysis
Yes
In-house
Testing
Mentioned
in “The Best Wireless Headphones for Quality Sound” 
Last updated: 22 Aug 2018

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