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Full disclosure: I'm an iPhone owner and have been for years. I also use my AirPods Pro on an almost daily basis and my iPad, too. So there are Apple products I really like and will (grudgingly) pay a premium for.
The Apple AirPods Max is not one of those products, for reasons I'll explain below. However, I feel obligated to point out that it's on sale right now for the lowest price on record: For a limited time, and while supplies last, Adorama has the AirPods Max for $449, a full $100 off the regular price. That beats the likes of Amazon (currently $489) and Best Buy ($500).
Although I haven't tried it myself, I have no doubt the AirPods Max is a good over-the-ear headphone. Probably even a great one. User ratings around the interwebs typically fall between 4.5 and 4.7 stars (out of 5), and most professional reviews range between very positive and outright gushing. (Read Engadget's AirPods Max review, which leans closer to the former.)
But the $549 price tag is borderline insulting. I know there are audiophiles out there who feel money is no object when it comes to their music and their ears, but I could never justify paying that much for a set of headphones.
Even if I felt like splurging, I'd look to the Bose 700 or Sony WH-1000XM4, two top-rated headphones you can often find on sale for under $300.
Honestly, though, I suspect most folks would be happy with my all-time-favorite budget headphone from Wyze. Currently selling for $70 at Amazon, it delivers a comfy fit, great sound, amazingly good active noise-canceling (ANC) and a clever transparency-mode feature.
But I get it: Sometimes the heart wants what the heart wants, and the same goes for the ears. If your organs absolutely insist on the AirPods Max, at least you have this chance to get a solid discount.
What do you think? Is this the Max deal you've been waiting to see? Share your 'phones feelings in the comments section below.