Bose A20 Aviation Headset with Bluetooth

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Product ID: 3490A

10 reasons the Bose A20 is the #1 headset in aviation

  1. ANR pioneers. Bose was the first company to introduce active noise reduction headsets (over 20 years ago) and they’ve been innovating ever since. The A20 offers 30% greater noise reduction than conventional aviation headsets.
  2. A focus on comfort. A quiet headset isn’t enough these days – it has to be comfortable too. The A20 has numerous features that make it the most comfortable headset we’ve worn, includ...
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10 reasons the Bose A20 is the #1 headset in aviation

  1. ANR pioneers. Bose was the first company to introduce active noise reduction headsets (over 20 years ago) and they’ve been innovating ever since. The A20 offers 30% greater noise reduction than conventional aviation headsets.
  2. A focus on comfort. A quiet headset isn’t enough these days – it has to be comfortable too. The A20 has numerous features that make it the most comfortable headset we’ve worn, including sheepskin cushions and a unique torsion spring that reduces clamping force.
  3. Famous Bose audio. Pilots rave about the Bose's Active EQ, which delivers crystal clear audio and rich sound when listening to music.
  4. Bluetooth phone interface. It’s easy to call Flight Service or update family members with this wireless connection that makes use of the A20’s noise cancellation.
  5. Bluetooth audio interface. Wirelessly connect your Bluetooth-enabled device to the Bose A20 to listen to music, and notifications from apps. Also available is the option to plug in your device with an aux input cord.
  6. Smart audio muting. A handy switch on the A20 control box allows you to choose what auxiliary audio you hear, including automatic muting of aux audio when the intercom is active.
  7. Lightweight design. At just 12 oz., you’ll hardly know the A20 is there. The magnesium headband also distributes the headset’s weight evenly, for all-day comfort.
  8. TSO'd. The A20 meets or exceeds all TSO standards (FAA TSO-C139 and EASA ETSO-C139), so you can count on this headset for years of service. They are built to last.
  9. Great service. If your Bose headset ever needs service, you can expect fast and friendly service, even years after your purchase. Includes a 5-year transferable warranty.
  10. Excellent battery life. Bose’s smart shutoff helps provide at least 45 hours of use from just two AA alkaline batteries.
Microphone can be connected to either earcup for convenience. Measures 8.4"h x 6.3"w x 3.2"d. Includes: A20 Aviation Headset, in-line clothing clip, control module, 2 AA batteries, aux-in cable adapter, carrying case.


"The Bose A20 is popular for a reason – it strikes a good balance between comfort, quiet and clarity. It's comfortable enough to wear all day and it's quiet enough for almost any type of airplane. It may not be the cheapest headset, but you get what you pay for with Bose."

Plus: Most comfortable headset I've worn

Plus: Excellent ANR, with no hissing sound

Plus: Great battery life

Minus: Top-end price requires a big upfront investment

- John Zimmerman
Commercial, Multi, Instrument
Vice President, Sporty's


Read more - here's our long-term product test report

John Zimmerman

Sporty's Test Flight Guarantee

Take your new headset flying and make sure it's the right choice for you. If you're not thrilled, return the headset to us within 30 days and in the same condition in which you received it - we'll exchange it for another headset or refund your money. There's no paperwork and no hassle. Just another reason why Sporty's is the #1 headset dealer in aviation.

Buy Now, Pay Later

A headset is a major investment, and now there's an easy way to make paying for it a little more convenient. For a limited time, PayPal Credit is offering no payments and no interest if paid in full in 6 months on purchases of $99 or more. Just choose the PayPal option at checkout. Learn More

Which cable do I need?

Most headsets come in multiple cable configurations. Choosing the right one is pretty easy, it just depends on what type of aircraft you fly:

  • Battery powered, twin plugs - this is by far the most common style, with separate microphone and headphone plugs (so-called PJ plugs). Almost every airplane ever built has these two plugs in the panel, so these headsets are universal. The only downside is that, for ANR headsets, you will need to use AA batteries to power the headset.
  • Aircraft powered, 6-pin plug - the second most popular style, sometimes called the "LEMO plug," requires no batteries since it is powered by the panel. This is convenient, but it does require the 6-pin plug to be installed in the panel. While many newer airplanes come with this option, most older airplanes do not. For these applications, you'll need to have your avionics shop wire in the plug - not a big job, but not something pilots can do on their own.
  • Helicopter plug  - helicopters use a single, shorter plug (that is not compatible with airplanes). This is not like the 6-pin plug above, however, since an ANR helicopter headset will still need AA batteries. The only confusing part is that some helicopters also have a 6-pin (or LEMO) plug. In these helicopters, there are two different single plug connections.
  • Airbus XLR plug - less common is a single 5-pin connector that is made for Airbus jets.

Headset cable optionsWhen in doubt, we recommend buying the battery powered, twin plug model. This is the most universal option, and will work in almost any airplane. If you have a 6-pin plug in your airplane or you plan to install one, the aircraft powered model is a nice option.

From the Press

"I expected it to be good. I just didn't expect it to be this good."

"Worth the wait"

Robert Goyer, Flying Magazine

Question marks

Have questions?

Ask our experts:
4.8 / 5.0
359 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
4.7 / 5
4.8 / 5
4.8 / 5
Ease Of Use
4.8 / 5
4.2 / 5
Would You Recommend?
Yes (106)
No (7)
Would You Recommend?
What I expected
Fits well, stays put, very quiet, would buy again.
September 20, 2018
4 weeks ago
Would You Recommend?
So far so good!
Was worried about not being able to hear engine noise very well in the helicopter but it lets plenty of sound through to moniter mechanical noise and cuts enough out to understand audio clearly.
September 19, 2018
1 month ago
Would You Recommend?
Bose A20
Works just like my other pair - the best!
September 19, 2018
2 weeks ago
5 / 5
5 / 5
5 / 5
Ease Of Use
5 / 5
4 / 5
Would You Recommend?
Gold Standard
There are lots of great headsets out there but this has always been my headset of choice. I believe its the best sound canceling. Sound quality and comfort are also excellent. Bluetooth connectivity is very reliable.
September 16, 2018
1 month ago
4 / 5
5 / 5
5 / 5
Ease Of Use
5 / 5
4 / 5
Would You Recommend?
Nothing compares to Bose
Up until I purchased the A20 I thought my 12 year old Bose Headset was the best. Unbelievable!!! The wife gets the old set and she is a happy girl. Thanks Sporty"s and Bose.

September 11, 2018
4 weeks ago
Would You Recommend?
Awesome headset
September 11, 2018
3 weeks ago
4 / 5
Ease Of Use
5 / 5
1 / 5
Would You Recommend?
Cheaper products as good
I could not reconcile the cost of the unit ($1100) when cheaper models that I tried ($300 to $600) were essentially as good. The lighter weight of the Bose wasn't noticeable to me.
September 2, 2018
1 month ago
Bose A#1-20!
Four words: Bose got it right! One small the soft case there is a place for two extra AA batteries. It would be nice to add two additional slots.
September 2, 2018
1 month ago
Would You Recommend?
Great headset
Great headset! Just used it on a 6hr flight across the country and I can’t imagine the flight without it. Also, the Bluetooth connected to my phone for music and phone calls. I bought a pair and feel they are well worth the money.
August 27, 2018
1 month ago
Would You Recommend?
Absolutely love it! The quality of construction, sound and noise canceling is way above any other brand. Also love Sportys and their top notch customer service!
August 23, 2018
1 month ago
Question and Answer
Start typing your question and we'll check if it was already asked and answered. Learn More
Browse 50 questions Browse 50 questions and 62 answers
Can the new Bose A20 be paired to and iPad for alerts from Forflight and a iPhone for talking on the phone (to get clearances) at the same time?
Philip D on Feb 5, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Yes it can be paired to an iPad and iPhone.
Once paired, you can make calls with your phone for clearances and IFR cancellations.
the iPad will give you audio for music, movies, and alerts.
Just bought my a20 headset on 8/7/17. It is in the shipping process, my question is will the speaker going to be shipped with my headset or do I need to redeem it at some other website? Thanks!
Nikegolf419 on Aug 7, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Please go to the Bose product page. You will see on the right side of the page recommend products. Just under the recommend products you will see the button for the rebate form. You will need a copy of your receipt to upload for the speaker.
I fly S76C++ and I own LS Zulo PFX but the ANR isn't too good. I want to change for something more comfortable/more silent and
I am in doubt between Bose A20 and LS Tango, which of these two has the best ANR Cancellation for Helicopter Noise?
Renato S on Aug 21, 2017
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What comes in the box of the A20 with Bluetooth?
Serge on Jan 17, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Included is the A20 Aviation Headset, in-line clothing clip, control module, 2 AA batteries, aux-in cable adapter, carrying case.
I am a student pilot and would love to have a Bose headset. What is the most common configuration of plugs/battery/no-battery used in GA planes?
Bob G on Apr 3, 2017
BEST ANSWER: The most common is the GA plugs (twin connectors) with battery.
Bluetooth headset has no cord at all?
Randy N on Nov 24, 2016
BEST ANSWER: hey Randy. The bose headset it has the normal comm chord that connectinto your airplane. The bluetooth is to your iPhone or iPad. So the blue tooth fantastic for listening to music on your phone. And if you need to call in for a clearance you can do it with your phone and hear it all in your headset.

The only thing i might say is to think hard if you want the typical two pin plugs connections. In which case the noise cancellation on off switch runs off batteries. You have to change them about every 10 hours or so. Or if your plane has the one pin option for your headset,(the round six pen) , it will supply power to the headset and you needn't worry about batteries ever. As soon as you push the noise cancellation button and the drone of the engine goes away, you will forget you paid a grand for these! Fly safe.
How tight are these headsets? I am a petite person but find that most of the discomfort from headsets is how tight they press against your head and subsequently, against what i would assume is my glands under my ear right behind my jaw. After a while, ugh! Does anyone have any experience with changing to Bose to relieve that pressure or recommend another brand altogether?
angela0540 on Apr 29, 2017
I have owned and used a variety of headsets over the years. I purchased a two Bose A20's last July. They are very comfortable. I understand the "pinching" problem that can occur with other headsets and I feel that this is completely a non-issue with the Bose A20's. I flew 24 hours in March of this year, including several flights greater than 4 hours in duration. I used the A20 exclusively and had nothing but excellent results.
What is the difference between the straight cord and the coil cord and which is preferred? Thanks
Joe K on Oct 27, 2016
BEST ANSWER: Straight cord is the standard for airplanes; coil cord is typically used for helicopters. It's really personal preference, depending somewhat on how far it is from your headset jack to the pilot seat.
Does the headset work when the batteries die?
A shopper on Aug 28, 2016
BEST ANSWER: If you let the AA batteries full deplete, the Bose A20 will still continue to function as a normal passive noise attenuation headset. You will not get the benefit of active noise cancellation or Bluetooth, but you will still be able to transmit and receive normally with ATC.
Do you offer a CFI discount like mypilotstore?
larry u on May 16, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Yes, visit for details.
Wil the bluetooth work with a cessna 152 ?
A shopper on Oct 22, 2017
BEST ANSWER: The bluetooth is used with either a phone or iPad.
If I purchase with the NAFI member discount, will I still get the speaker??
A shopper on Aug 10, 2017
BEST ANSWER: The rebate for states not to be combined with any other offer or promotion.
What are the Dimensions of the storage case?
Kevin S on Aug 2, 2017
BEST ANSWER: 7 1/2" x 5" x 10"
Does music play via bluetooth to passengers as well?
G L on Jan 13, 2017
BEST ANSWER: No, the music is directed only to the headset. If you would like music to go to the passengers you would need an intercom with a music input.
The Bose Manual states that you should use Alkaline batteries, Is it possible to use Rechargeable Batteries? which are generally NiMH thanks
A shopper on Jan 30, 2017
BEST ANSWER: I have not tried but I do not believe it would be an issue, if really are concerned call Bose direct they have great support.
I am looking for a headset that works well with state of the art hearing aides. Any feedback, particularly on the Bose 20?
monica on Sep 6, 2016
BEST ANSWER: My CFI has serious hearing loss and requires hearing aids. The A20’s are the only headsets he can wear with them on. Please understand your may be different, but you should try them. Some Bose stores do have them on display for testing on a nice system.
Under the choose option for the plug type, which type should I get as a student pilot mostly for Cessna 172s. Don’t have any experience with headsets and was confused with the straight cord and coiled cord, battery powered or aircraft powered, twin plugs or 5 pin connector. Which option should I choose?
Daniel E on Aug 14, 2018
BEST ANSWER: The typical training aircraft use the twin plug (PJ Plug).
"Can you advise what connector is suitable for the ATR 72 , as it uses the XLR5 Airbus connector ? However the aircraft will not power the headset through the panel . So I would ideally need to buy the GA twin Battery Pin with and Airbus XLR5 connector ?"
Tejesh n on Aug 8, 2018
BEST ANSWER: I would recommend the GA connector with the XLR connector.
Does the Bose A20 come with a headset bag?
A shopper on Jul 30, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Yes, the headset includes a bag.
I’m currently flying modified KA350s, and alternate from left to right seat on nearly a daily basis. The company’s ANR headsets we are issued are light and comfortable, but the mic does not swivel 180 degrees to accommodate switching sides - which is an annoyance, especially draping the cord across your lap or behind you. Do these boom mics swivel so you can swap sides - or do you have to remove and physically swap the mic from one side to the other? Removing and swapping the mic from left to right would likely be a pain every day - unless it’s designed for an easy swap. Furthermore, I would imagine it would eventually wear and break unless it was specifically designed to do this frequently. Is this addressed in the Bose design, or is the mic only designed to be swapped out infrequently?
Robert S on Jul 22, 2018
BEST ANSWER: You would need to physically switch sides.
Does radio have to be a certain type
For blue tooth to work ?
A shopper on Jun 4, 2018
BEST ANSWER: No, The Bluetooth is only for connecting to either a phone or a table.
Does the headset or headset set pad contain wool?
A shopper on Jun 2, 2018
BEST ANSWER: No, there is no wool in the pad.
I can't hear the stall horn in a Cessna 172 with these head phones. Any ideas?
A shopper on May 22, 2018
BEST ANSWER: I cant answer specifically to the Cessna 172. I've had no issue hearing the stall in a Piper Tomahawk PA-38 while practicing maneuvers.
I am planning to purchase one BOSE A20 . please let me know what is the type of adopter that will fit to Cessna 172 and Diamond DA42 aircraft?.
sajee on May 4, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Both of those aircraft should use the GA twin plug.
If i buy an bose powered by aircraft (5 pin airbus) and i want yo use for twin plugs for general aviation (with proper connector), can i put batteries too? or how they have power?
Pancho on Apr 30, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Yes, the headset has a battery compartment that would power the any when using an adapter.
What type of connector i need if i want to use for a A320 but i want to use for GA too (twin plugs). And if i pick an airbus plug with transform to a twin plug i need the batteri powered type or aircraft powered? Thanks.
Pancho on Apr 17, 2018
BEST ANSWER: I would choose the connection that you use most frequently. You can then adapte it for the other. If you choose the XLR connection for the airbus then, you would need an adapter that would provide power for the ANR to function.
I purchased a Bose A20 headset on 3/13/18. Am I eligible for the Bluetooth speaker offer?
Mark S on Apr 10, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Yes, call customer service at 513-735-9000
We are thinking of buying three A20s with Bluetooth for our company. Is there an additional discount for a purchase of 3?
Davina R on Apr 9, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Currently, we are offering 10% off the second and subsequent headsets. There is also a mail-in rebate for a Bluetooth speaker.
Does the headset connect to Android phones and tablets with Bluetooth as well?
G U on Apr 1, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Yes, it will connect to an Android phone or tablet.
Is there an adapter that will allow me to use this headset in both helicopters and airplanes?
Brook S on Mar 13, 2018
BEST ANSWER: Yes, from either a lemo plug to the helicopter or from twin plug to helicopter.
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