My new NC 700 work great for noise cancelling and phone calls, but I've been spending a lot of time on Zoom lately and there is a huge difference between the built-in microphone on my MacBook and my NC 700. People on the other end of the line can hear immediately when I turn on my NC 700 mic; my voice sounds muffled, like I'm talking into a tin can. This is not just a problem in Zoom; the same happens with Jitsi and other video calling apps.
Is there something I can do to fix this? Otherwise I'm afraid I'll have to return them, they're useless to me if I can't use the mic.
Jun 15, 2018
I have a QC35ii and not an NC700 and I don't work for Bose. But take the following with a 'grain of salt'.... Zoom and the other videoconferencing applications communicate and process audio at phone call quality. That means instead of the higher quality music audio sampling frequencies at 44.1 kHz or film audio quality at 48 kHz, the audio you hear is mono and at half the music quality at 22 kHz (to check for example, go to Zoom options statistics and click on the audio tab. It will probably say something like 24 Khz). Telephone communications have historically been even lower 8 kHz to 16 Khz (the audio range for human voice). At 22 kHz and below, the audio will sound very 'metallic'. If the participants in your meeting don't hear metallic they should consider themselves 'lucky'. Again, anything with a frequency below standard stereo music of 44.1 kHz will sound metallic.
So my 'suggestion' is that the quality you hear is likely not due to either the inherent quality of the microphones or speakers on either end, but rather the limitation of the audio data flow between users over the Internet.
BTW, this is the same 'issue' for Whatsapp (and similar Voice Over IP - VOIP applications) which uses the "Opus" codec (the thing that creates the sound) at rates of 8 to 16 kHz.
I tried to keep the techie stuff 'simple', it is actually more complex.
Thanks for your reply, Joel. Interesting information 🙂 but this still doesn't explain the huge difference between the mic on my MacBook and the NC700. The quality of sound when I use the NC700 microphone is clearly much much lower.
It's impossible that the cause is (only) the limitation of audio data flow. Otherwise, the mic on my MacBook should have the same issue - which it doesn't.
Jul 15, 2020
What worked for me to improve audio/mic quality during a Zoom call was to connect my NC 700 headphones to my PC using the audio cable that came with the headphones and to use the mic on my PC. You can still run noise cancellation in this setup.
I previously tried:
- Factory resetting the device
- Changing mic source between PC and headphones
- Changing sound settings between hands-free and stereo
- Turning on/off noise cancellation
None of the above worked, except for when I wire-connected to my PC using the audio cable. Hope that helps!
Sep 22, 2020
I have the same problem with the NC 700 for zoom on a MacBook Air. Other call participants always say the sound is much much better when I switch back to the MacBook built-in mic from the NC700.
Incidentally, from other forum discussions I see that on a wired connection the mic signal from the NC700 is not transmitted (the signals aren't even output on the corresponding headphone socket!) so you're just back to using whatever built-in mic you have in your PC/Mac etc and the mic signal does _not_ have noise cancellation (the audio you hear still does). So this is at best a workaround as it means the NC700 is just used as headphones, not a headset - you can also just choose the built-in mic on zoom.
Has anyone been able to get a response from Bose on this problem or do they not care? If I can't use the NC700's noise-cancelling mic function on zoom I think I'll return them.
Dec 17, 2020
Following up to keep this thread going and to see if there's been any update on this, or any response from Bose?
I got these headphones a couple of weeks ago, tried them for the first time today with Zoom, and I immediately had the same problem described here. I planned to use these for teaching and pre-recording lectures, but at this point they're useless for that. I don't really want to return them, but I might have to if this doesn't get a fix - anyone had better luck with other headphones and things like Zoom?
Dec 22, 2020
The issue here is that Bluetooth voice audio transmission quality is poor. There isn’t much Bose can do about this as anything that uses Bluetooth has the same issue. If you want better quality, use a wired microphone.
Dec 14, 2020
Also would like to keep this thread alive in hopes that it might be addressed/addressable. An added issue I am having when connected to zoom is that the 700's microphone seems to be picking up EVEN MORE background noise. I don't have this problem when connecting through Bose SoundSport bluetooth earbuds. This seems to suggest against the idea presented above that bluetooth connection is the cause for difficulty.
Jan 12, 2021
I am on a PC/laptop and just experienced the same issue. The audio was awful. I have also had this problem in Google Meets. I have a pair of QC35ii and do not have this problem at all, nor do I have this problem on any other Bluetooth headset, just the NC700s. I am concerned to the point of possibly returning. I am also experiencing cracking when connected to two devices. These simply do not appear to work nearly as well as the QC35iis. I'd appreciate a response from Bose. Perhaps a software update would resolve these problems.
I look forward to your reply.