I’ve Listened to Over 100,000 Minutes on Spotify — Mostly With These Headphones

Photo: Chloe Anello

I never realized just how much music I listened to until Spotify Wrapped came out. Aside from learning that I’m a way bigger Olivia Rodrigo fan than I thought, I also learned that I spent 100,656 minutes (or 1,677 hours or 70 days) listening to music this year, which, according to Spotify, is 98 percent more than every other user in the U.S. I realize that is a lot. But I put on endless playlists for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It’s on while I cook or work. And sometimes, I even fall asleep to music. It’s such an integral part of my everyday life that my Marshall headphones, which I used for most of those minutes this year, became essential too.

For the skeptics who need proof. Photo: Chloe Anello

Until this summer, I used either my four-year-old AirPods or corded over-the-ear headphones from LSTN. But that combination wasn’t working: The AirPods didn’t fit well, and they died quickly. My over-the-ear headphones had better sound quality, but they smashed my glasses into the side of my face after wearing them for a long time. I wouldn’t consider myself a tech person. But as a violinist and music lover, I knew I wanted new headphones that would be noise canceling, feature controls on the headphones themselves, have a long battery life and clarity of sound, and were also comfortable to wear. I began to research options when Marshall asked if I wanted to try their Mode II true wireless earphones; I gladly accepted.

The first thing I noticed was the improved battery life. When the case is fully charged, these headphones can get 25 hours total of listening, with each charge providing about five hours of playtime. They’re not the longest-lasting headphones out there — they only last two hours longer than AirPods — but that additional time means I can squeeze in two more episodes of My Favorite Murder or four more listens of Sour.

Unlike my AirPods, which muddled sound into one indistinct blob, these Marshall earbuds help me enjoy the nuances of the music. I can hear every instrument clearly, especially when I adjust the frequencies with an equalizer built into the app. For example, when I bake or clean, I like to put on this playlist with the equalizer’s “rock” preset. This elevates the bass levels while reducing the mid-low frequencies, which allows the guitars and basses to come through crisply. (You can’t adjust the frequencies on regular AirPods, which gives these Marshall headphones another leg up.)

Perhaps most importantly, since I wear them near-constantly, is that I barely feel them — but they’re still secure. I’ve accidentally knocked out my AirPods while putting on a mask, and in the middle of sweaty workouts, I always felt like I had to adjust my AirPods when they became slick. But these Marshall headphones sit snugly against the ear instead of dangling, so I never have to worry about losing them after being jostled or adjusting them mid–yoga pose.

They still connect to my iPhone and other Apple products, allowing me to operate Siri and answer calls with the tap of the finger. But their Bluetooth connectivity isn’t the smoothest process. To switch between playing music on my phone, iPad, and computer, I have to disconnect from the last device and then reconnect, meaning that if my laptop is closed, I can’t pair my headphones with another device until I open my computer up and disconnect them, which can be kind of a pain.

But it’s an easy thing to look past, given how these Marshall headphones met (and exceeded) my number-one requirement: sound quality. Because I grew up listening almost exclusively to classic rock, I’ve heard many of these songs in every way possible — in the car via radio or Spotify, on my dad’s Google Home, through $10 headphones, on expensive and cheap speakers, AirPods, and more — so I can confidently say the Marshall headphones provide one of the crispest sound experiences I’ve tried before. Everyone from Elvis to Sam Cooke to John Mayer to Leon Bridges to, yes, Olivia Rodrigo sounds as if they’re singing in the same room as me — and not over a pair of earbuds.

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I Listened to 100,000 Minutes on Spotify With These Earbuds