Customer Reviews for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones

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Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones

Ideal for the traveler, student or music lover. The latest technology and convenient foldable size. The NC180 features an adjustable headband, superior sound quality and clarity, patented LINX AUDIO technology, in-line volume control for easy adjustment to safe listening levels (no more hunting for the volume control) and state-of-the-art active noise cancelation (ANC). Features: Featuring Award-Winning Patented LINX AUDIO® a Hear the Difference® technology In-Line Volume Control for Easy Adjustment to Safe Listening Levels Lightweight and Comfortable fit State-of-the-art active noise cancelation (ANC) Small and compact foldable design perfect for travel Specifications: Frequency Response: 20 Hz - 20,000 Hz Sensitivity at 1 kHz: 115 dB (Off); 121 dB (On) Plug: 3.5 mm Included: 1/4" Home Stereo Adaptor AAA Battery (1) Soft carrying pouch Model: NC 180B
Average Customer Rating:
3.162 out of 5
3.2
 out of 
5
(99 Reviews) 99
(out of 99 reviews)
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Snapshot (99 reviews)
5 stars
35
4 stars
14
3 stars
12
2 stars
8
1 star
30
57 of 99(58%)customers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Review 1 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Location:Milwaukee, WI
Date:May 19, 2011

Best of the affordable

Pros: low price, great features, excellent noise cancellation
Cons: emphasis on bass frequencies, excellent noise cancellation
Model Number: NC180B
"I am hard of hearing so noise cancellation is really important to my ability to hear without distraction. I was able to directly compare the NC180s with the following brands of noise cancelling headphones:
Philips SHN2500
Panasonic RP HC55-S
Bose (both QuietComfort 15 and QuietComfort 3)
Audiovox HPNC100
In terms of noise cancelling and audio quality, the Bose won the Blue Ribbon. But the NC180s are a very close second in terms of noise cancellation and came in third behind the Philips in audio quality. Neither the Panasonics nor the Audiovox are in the same league.
The Bose are hobbled by their price (as of this writing least expensive Bose costs five times as much as the NC180s) as well as by the fact that when their batteries run out, they stop working, period, and all you have left is an expensive paperweight.
The NC180s have no such issue. The NC180 sound quality diminishes quite dramatically when its noise cancellation is turned off, by either the switch or by a dead battery. This is true of most of the NC headphones I have tried. But at least they still work.
Audio quality is a lot more subjective, but the difference between the Bose and the NC180s was clear even to me. The Bose have a much more pronounced dynamic range; that, combined with Bose's incredibly effective noise cancellation, made it easy for my damaged ears to accurately discern between sibilants like "p", "d" and "t' sounds.
I also gave the audio quality edge to the Philips because they produced a brilliant sound, emphasizing higher frequencies at the expense of bass.
The NC180s are a little bass-heavy to my ears, but adjusting the equalizer allows me to compensate. And Able Planet's noise cancellation technology (including the tight seal achieved by the earcups) is highly effective, rivaling the Bose. That alone makes it easy to forgive a lot of minor shortcomings.
Able Planet built the NC180s with a lot of really nice, well-thought-out features that actually beat the Bose. For instance, when not in use, the NC180s fold into a compact, easy-to-carry-and-store shape. I haven't yet found a head they were unable to fit upon snugly.
The cord plugs into both the headphones and the sound source with a mini jack at either end. This means that the weakest, most frequently broken item on most other headphones is easily and inexpensively replaceable on the NC180s. The cord that comes with the unit has a convenient volume control. It's about 5 feet (1.5 meters) long, and resists tangling, although it can knot when you wind it up if you aren't careful.
I haven't had a chance to use the NC180s in warm weather yet. But I suspect that the earcups will be very warm and prone to make my ears sweat when I'm out mowing the lawn. Still that's a price I'm willing to pay for the kind of noise cancellation these 'phones offer. Thus far they have worked wonderfully while riding in a noisy car, while driving a tractor and while flying coach at the back of the cabin.
They extinguish all kinds of otherwise annoying sounds so well it's almost scary. In fact, the noise cancellation is so good, I'm going to list it as both a pro AND a con."
34 of 36 people found this review helpful.
Review 2 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Location:Sunnyvale, CA
Date:September 26, 2011

Good noise cancellation; good sound; ears too warm

Pros: good noice cancellation, work reasonably well without anc on, good sound reproduction
Cons: ears feel too warm
Model Number: NC180B
"When I tried this the first time, I thought the noise cancellation is not effective enough. Then I learned that the active noise cancellation technology is supposed to only cancel consistent background noise like that of a jet engine. I tested these headphones against the Bose QC2 headphones that a friend had. We had jet engine noise (simulated by an iPhone app) blaring from a set of Bose speakers. These headphones cancelled at least as much noise as the Bose QC2, and I thought they cancelled more, but my friend who owned the Bose QC2 thought that was because of better (physical) isolation. :) IMO, these also reproduced music better than the Bose QC2 when the jet engine noise was playing in the background. These headphones produced slightly more hum/buzz than the Bose QC2 when cancellation was on but no music playing. These headphones also work without active noise cancellation, but the volume is significantly less. My only gripe with these is that these seem to get quite warm on the ears because of the thick foam pads. I think the Bose QC2 did not have that problem."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 3 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Location:Columbia, MD
Date:June 12, 2011

Decent Value for Sound Cancelling Headphones

Pros: good value, comfortable volume control, seem durable
Cons: not to be confused with bose, folding feature can grab hair
Model Number: NC180B
"I have been a long time Bose customer for these products because I do a lot of long-haul flying. I got my girlfriend a set of these, as the Bose run 5-6 times as much. She will only use them a few times per year. I tried them out and they were OK. Nice feature is the volume control, something missing on the Bose and helpful on planes, where the volume control at low levels can be a choice between OFF and LOUD. I would not recommend these if you use them regularly (couple of times per month), it is worth the Bose price. However they are better than others I have tried in this price range and they are reasonably comfortable. I looked for the "hiss" mentioned in other reviews, and it is there but not significant compared to plane engine drone or like things where you need noise-cancellation. I think they are useful and you will benefit if you fly to Europe/Asia or even coast to coast in the US."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 4 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Location:Medford, Oregon
Date:December 27, 2011

UNBELIEVABLE! Broke out of the box 3 X's

Cons: was not operational
Model Number: NC180B
"I bought two sets of the Musician's Choice foldable noise canceling headphones from Costco for my two boys before Christmas. When we opened them up, on one of the sets the power would not turn on (yes we put the batteries in the right way). The second set shortly stopped working on one side. We wondered whether we were either just very unlucky, or were these must be of poor quality. I offered to my sons to bring them back to Costco and either trade a pair or just get our money back. One son said don't bother he would buy a pair from another company, the other said go ahead and trade, and try another pair. Much to our dismay... THE POWER DID NOT TURN ON AGAIN on the next pair!! Yes they work without the ability to turn on the power but we don't get the benefit of the noise reduction. I'm wondering if we got into a bad lot. We will be returning this pair as well and getting our money back. As this is my first experience buying from this company I cannot in good conscience recommend Ableplanet headphones. How could i trust that the next pair I purchase is not broke in the box as well."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 5 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Location:San Jose, CA
Date:February 28, 2012

Good for awhile, but...

Pros: price, good fit, nice sound quality
Cons: breaks too easily if unfolded, on/off switch broke-less than one year old, quality of materials is poor
"I had these for about 8 months before the middle section at the top of the headphones simply snapped. I never could fix it so I had to tape it, and then four months later the on/off switch totally stopped working! I was thrilled with the sound quality and the fit, but the poor quality of the materials and the fact that they ultimately broke in two places really disappointed me. I returned them to costco no questions asked, and who should be returning another pair but the woman right in front of me! Hers had broken in a different place and the switch also had stopped working. SO BAD. Costco doesn't even carry them in the stores anymore. DO NOT BUY THEM. Go with the Bose on-ear headphones instead. You'll pay about twice as much, but it will totally be worth it."
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Review 6 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Date:May 19, 2011

Quality Entry Level NC Headphones

Pros: fantastic gift for the teen, gaming mic bonus - great idea!
Cons: wish they had a hard case
Model Number: NC180B
"For the price, these are great. My son kept swiping my B*** set, and fearing he would break them, I got these for this b-day. Awesome choice. I'm no music buff, but at the level I listen to my music & books, I can seldom tell the difference between the two sets. If you see feedback from the manufacturer site, you find similar comments."
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
Review 7 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Location:ABQ, NM
Date:August 20, 2012

Unfair Reviews

Pros: several
Model Number: Able Planet NC180B
"Some reviewers are complete morons. I just bought a pair and plugged them into my iPhone. Initially there was to much bass, BUT THAT IS WHAT AN EQ IS FOR. I adjusted the EQ for my taste and I absolutely love them. To give this product an unfair review because the reviewer has no clue, in my humble opinion is completely unfair. Also, I have owned a pair of wireless Able Planet headphones for years and recently had a problem with the transmitter. Customer service was excellent and they promptly shipped out a new one a no cost."
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Review 8 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Location:Detroit, Michigan
Date:February 19, 2012

Poor design

Pros: sound price
Cons: cheap plastic junk
Model Number: NC180B
"Great sound great idea compact but really poor construction. Right side bracket broke after one month normal use. Even the display model at Costco was broken when we returned them. Costco was wonderful full refund no hassle. Spent a lot more money but bought Skullcandy Aviators lifetime warranty. This was a great price but they do not hold up. Please start carrying Skullcandy or something that will last more than a month. Able Planet needs to work on a better product."
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Review 9 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Date:January 28, 2012

Decent sound, but flimsy

Pros: price
Cons: flimsy
Model Number: NC180B
"I bought these earphones in the store and used them for about three months, including a trip to Thailand. The sound quality and noise cancelling were passable, but not great. First the plastic snap lock broke because, basically, it's just a little piece of plastic that bends every time you fold and unfold them. Soon after that, the whole hinge broke because it wasn't locked tight when in use. Returned to the store for refund."
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Review 10 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Location:North, NJ
Date:March 23, 2012

I liked it so much & its so cheap I want one more

Pros: great buy and unbelievable price thanks to costco, good construction and sleek design
Cons: clicking sound in very loud sounds like explosions, slightly bulky on very long flights, not suitable in very hot weather conditions
Model Number: NC180B
"I bought these at the warehouse for an unbelievable price. When I got home I checked online if there was any other retailer selling it for less than Costco. Not surprisingly, I couldn't find it for less any where else. On the contrary, it is almost double the price everywhere else.
The sound quality is great with rich bass, clear speech, crisp sounds. As with most products sold in Costco, these headphones came with a nice bundle of accessories like the soft carry bag, a decent sized cable with in-line volume control, different adapters for airline and amplifier use, and a AAA battery.
I used these in a very long flight and the noise cancellation did it's magic. Like most Boeing airplanes, Boeing 777 airplanes have some engine noise in the cabin. But these headphones makes this constant background noise disappear. As soon as I turned on the Active Noise Cancellation switch, the Red LED indicator light came on and the noise disappeared and it felt serene and super quiet. There is a tiny background hiss which is understandably from the electronics of the system but nothing compared to any noise.
I used to think my bedroom is a quietest room I have every lived in. But when I turned on the Active Noise Canceling in my bedroom, I realized that there was still a little background noise (without the headphones), even in the most quietest room.
I think this is especially useful while reading, studying, meditating, air-travel, train-travel, bus-travel, or any other place including quiet areas.
Another amazing thing that I discovered is while watching videos in airplanes, it is much better with the ANC on. I tried watching with the ANC off and its such a huge difference. Also, the volume gets boosted with the ANC on so if a particular music or video file has inherent low sound volume, the ANC will boost it up. Yes it will use the battery but that is not a problem because I have used this for more than 8 hours and the battery is still working.
Please note that these headphones work on their own without battery power by just plugging them into a TV, Music System, MP3 Player, Cellular Phone, Smart Phone etc. By turning ON the Active Noise Cancellation switch, all outside noise gets canceled and the audio volume gets louder.
Overall I am very satisfied with this headphone. I liked it so much that I want one more as a spare.
These headphones fold very easily and can be packed safely into a hand bag in the soft carry pouch.
You cannot break it unless you are careless and don't know how to unlock the center lock on the headband. You have to use the fingertip of your thumb to push the lock release button in, and twist it at the same time to unlock it and fold it. Please read the instruction before trying to unlock the headband."
5 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Review 11 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Location:Plano TX
Date:September 27, 2011

Headphones worked great on airplane

Pros: very effective for the price, folds together to take up minimal space
"I requested these for my birthday, even though I had doubts that the noise cancelling feature would be of any real value. But on long overseas flights, where background engine and other noise are hard to block, these headphones did great at cancelling out that incessant hum. Plus, the noise cancelling feature made listening to in-flight movie as well as an iPhone movie much more enjoyable and less of a battle.
And when I wanted to sleep, I wore them without plugging into anything, so was able avoid having to listen to in-flight (useless) announcements, screaming kids and useless passenger banter, etc. Well worth the very reasonable cost."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 12 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Date:December 16, 2012

Design in poor quality

Pros: reasonably comfortable
Cons: very poorly designed so it wouldn't last long
"The headphone broke after I purchased it a few months later with very little use. The problem is the plastic joint (the part folding the phone) broke so the phone can not be held to the ears. Carefully examined the parts and the design. This piece requires strong material so it may held with certain strength. Unfortunately, it was made by plastic which can early be broken or just out of shape. I don't recommend this product at all."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 13 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
3 out of 5
3 out of 5
Date:December 2, 2011

Great sound, poor build quality

Pros: cheap-ish, great sound
Cons: fragile!
"These were actually the second pair of these headphones that I've owned. Both of them had very good sound and deep bass. However the plastic is extremely fragile. As I was putting on the headphones this morning the plastic part that keeps the top of the headphones together snapped like a twig. The first pair of headphones the plastic part near the ears snapped as well. I will be returning the second pair to Costco. The only reason it got 3 stars instead of 2 or 1 is because of the great sound quality and price."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 14 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Location:Lynnwood, WA
Date:January 2, 2012

Poor Sound Quality

Pros: cheap
Cons: terrible sound
Model Number: NC180B
"The noise canceling is acceptable for the price and I haven't had any problems with broken parts that others have complained about.
But the sound quality (noise canceling on or off) is just terrible. My $5 earbuds have better range and clarity.
There are whole chunks of frequencies that aren't being reproduced by the headphones. I'm not an audiophile, but these are really bad. Imagine your favorite pair of headphones. Now stick some aluminum foil over the speakers. That is what these sound like."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 15 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Location:Anchorage, AK
Date:November 29, 2012

100% Satisfied

Pros: they do the job!
Model Number: NC180B
"I've had a pair of these for about 18 months and I love them. I'm a frequent traveler and I mainly use them on planes and in the airport. They are comfortable to wear for hours (I sleep with them on the plane), the noise cancellation really works well, the sound quality is good, and they have held up very well. I see people here complaining that their pair broke, but mine are going strong. And it's a steal at the price."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 16 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Location:Denver, CO
Date:October 26, 2011

Good value, decent performance

Pros: great value, great bass extension, good feature set
Cons: mids and highs are a bit mediocre
"Comfort: A little small but they do fit over my ears with a little wiggling. Get's a little warm inside, which is to be expected from sealed over-the-ear headphones (no air flow).
Noise reduction: Over-the-ear reduces noise somewhat by itself, active cancellation does pretty well on top of that. A little quiet hiss in very quiet passages which is also to be expected just from air molecules hitting the microphones. Not distracting and NR works.
Performance: Mids and highs are decent, but no match for something silky smooth like Grado's. Bass extension is quite impressive and far superior to Grado's.
Overall, a great buy at $50 considering the complete package - pretty comfortable, pretty good noise reduction, pretty good mids and highs and great bass extension, not to mention that they fold easily. I'm keeping them."
Review 17 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
4 out of 5
4 out of 5
Location:West Virginia
Date:May 25, 2011

Great product

Pros: - excellent comfort feel and great prodcut price
Cons: not complete noise-cancelling but very good
Model Number: NC190B
"I am very pleased with this product and the sound and capability of these headphones. A very good product and very affordable. The total noise-cancelling is not completely silent, but very good for the money. I have a friend that has Seinhouser headphones and other than those having more base sound, these were very competitive with them. Very comfortable feel as well. I would definitely buy these again and recommend them for all."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 18 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
1 out of 5
1 out of 5
Location:Danville, CA
Date:October 31, 2012
"Like so many others, I bought these with high hopes. I had a pair of noise canceling headphones before, but they didn't travel well and I thought these would be better. But I was wrong. The hinge in the middle broke after only a couple of months and there is no way to fix it. I wouldn't recommend these to anybody who wants an everyday headphone."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 19 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
5 out of 5
5 out of 5
Location:Chico, Ca
Date:July 11, 2011

Good Bang for the Buck

Pros: battery life, volume control, no balky hard case to pack, comfortable to wear, reasonable price
Cons: not a bose
Model Number: NC 180B Able Planet Headphones
"For most folks these are great headphones. They reduce airline noise, and have adjustable volume to compensate for individual comfort level. They fold up nicely and I prefer the bag to a hard case that is cumbersome in my flight carry on bag. I have even used them alone to cut noise of loud motel room air conditioneras so I could sleep better. If you want 5-10% better quality for 4-5x the price, buy a Bose"
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 20 for Able Planet NC180B Foldable Noise Canceling Headphones
Rating
2 out of 5
2 out of 5
Location:Mpls, MN
Date:November 22, 2012

Disappointed

Pros: decent noise canceling ability
Cons: they will break
"Same thing many are saying...I bought these about 5 months ago. I just used them at work to listen to music and for the noise canceling feature because our office can be noisy. They worked well. But I just put them on my head recently, and SNAP! They broke. There is thin plastic at the middle hinge."
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
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