As if Apple hasn’t had enough attention, they’re winding out the year in full swing with yet more announcements, this morning announcing new over-ear headphones the AirPods Max are coming to Australia for – wait for it – $899.

That’s more than the best Bose has to offer, the Best Sony which we reckon are the choice up to now, and yes there are more expensive headphones but they are niche and very specific.

AirPods Max headphones

Now granted, they are high end, with Apple touting Hi-Fi Audio, Adaptive EQ, Active Noise Cancelling and Spatial audio – but still – $899?

Apple’s Greg Joswiak says “AirPods are the most popular headphones in the world, beloved for their effortless setup, incredible sound quality, and iconic design. With AirPods Max, we are bringing that magical AirPods experience to a stunning over-ear design with high-fidelity audio,”

Breaking down the AirPods Max into parts

“The custom acoustic design, combined with powerful H1 chips, and advanced software enable AirPods Max to use computational audio to wirelessly deliver the ultimate personal listening experience.”

The digital crown for the headphones is the same style as the Apple Watch

That personalised experience in part comes from the “revolutionary” mechanism that attaches each ear cup to the headband. This allows a very personalised fit unlike any other.

On the side is a Digital Crown, just like the Apple Watch which is for Volume and Track controls.

AirPods Max available in a range of colours

Here’s how Apple describe the four key features of these AirPods Max headphones:

  • Adaptive EQ: AirPods Max use Adaptive EQ to adjust the sound to the fit and seal of the ear cushions by measuring the sound signal delivered to a user and adjusting the low and mid-frequencies in real time — bringing rich audio that captures every detail.
  • Active Noise Cancellation: AirPods Max deliver immersive sound through Active Noise Cancellation so users can focus on what they are listening to. Each ear cup features three outward-facing microphones to detect environmental noise, while one microphone inside the ear cup monitors the sound reaching the listener’s ear. Using computational audio, noise cancellation continuously adapts to the headphone fit and movement in real time.
  • Transparency Mode: With AirPods Max, users can switch to Transparency mode to simultaneously listen to music while hearing the environment around them — ensuring everything, including a user’s own voice, sounds natural while audio plays perfectly. Switching between Active Noise Cancellation and Transparency mode can be done with a single press using the noise control button. 
  • Spatial Audio: AirPods Max use spatial audio with dynamic head tracking to place sounds virtually anywhere in a space — delivering an immersive, theatre-like experience for content recorded in 5.1, 7.1, and Dolby Atmos. Using the gyroscope and accelerometer in AirPods Max and iPhone or iPad, spatial audio tracks the motion of a user’s head as well as the device, compares the motion data, then remaps the sound field so it stays anchored to the device, even as the user’s head moves. 
AirPods Max in a slim carry case

They claim a 20 hour battery life, and they also come with a soft case which puts the AirPods Max into an ultra-low power mode to help prolong battery when not in use.

You can pre-order today, they’ll be available and shipping next Tuesday the 15th December.