Some AirPods Max Owners Complain of Condensation in Ear Cups

Since the AirPods Max headphones were released on December 15, there have been a growing number of complaints from MacRumors readers who have run into a problem with condensation.

airpods max condensation

Image via MacRumors reader Jordan921

Some ‌AirPods Max‌ owners who have been wearing their headphones for a prolonged period of time have noticed condensation forming inside the ear cup. From MacRumors reader ssong:

So I've had my AirPods max for just under a week and have noticed that after prolonged usage there's a decent amount of condensation inside the ear cup.

it's quite noticeable when you detach the magnetic ear cushions from the ear cup.

The condensation seems to happen regardless of temperature, and most people have reported seeing it after several hours of use, but for some, it shows up within an hour or two. One user has claimed that the condensation has led to issues with Active Noise Cancellation, but this has not been echoed by other ‌AirPods Max‌ owners and no one else has reported problems caused by condensation.

Other ‌AirPods Max‌ owners have said that the same issue has happened with headphones from other brands. From MacRumors reader JBGoode:

I get this on my Sony WH1000XM3. I've had them for a long time and it's no big deal. Have none of you owned over the head cans before? Your ears are gonna a sweat and there will be some condensation. I think it's pretty common for this type of headphones.

The ‌AirPods Max‌ are not water resistant and those who are affected by the condensation are concerned about the longevity of the headphones with the water droplets pooling inside. The ear cushions are not affected and remain dry despite the condensation inside the ear cups.

Some ‌AirPods Max‌ owners have returned the headphones, while others have picked up AppleCare+ in case of future problems. Apple has not yet commented on the issue.

Related Roundup: AirPods Max
Buyer's Guide: AirPods Max (Buy Now)
Related Forum: AirPods

Top Rated Comments

now i see it Avatar
9 months ago
Watergate?
Score: 57 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Craptastic Avatar
9 months ago
“..Growing number of complaints from MacRumors users..”

LOL but of course. What’s an Apple product without a number of complains from MacRumors users? :rolleyes:
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
-DMN- Avatar
9 months ago
Condensation comes from the person not the device, that's just user error.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dannyyankou Avatar
9 months ago
This happens with most over ear headphones. I'm a big critic of AirPods max but this is quite normal.
Score: 17 Votes (Like | Disagree)
LeadingHeat Avatar
9 months ago
Isn’t that normal? Basically earmuffs over your ears, of course they’ll sweat. If it’s noise cancelling, it blocks out most outside air I’d guess. Where else do you expect it to go other than to be soaked up by the ear cup sponges?
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
kilimanjaro Avatar
9 months ago

This happens with most over ear headphones. I'm a big critic of AirPods max but this is quite normal.
This has never happened with my Sony XM4s, or, Bang & Olufsen H95s.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

AirPods Max In Stock Pink

AirPods Max in Pink Now Available to Ship on Amazon

Thursday March 11, 2021 11:39 am PST by
AirPods Max in Pink are now shipping on Amazon, for the regular price of $549.00. This is the first time AirPods Max have been in stock and available to ship from a major Apple reseller in March, and we are only seeing availability in Pink at this time. You can also get Pink AirPods Max on AT&T with a March 16 shipping estimate. Before today's restock, Silver and Space Gray were the most...
airpods max sim ejector

AirPods Max Hidden Feature Hints at Customization Potential

Friday February 5, 2021 8:59 am PST by
It has been discovered that AirPods Max has a hidden feature allowing users to easily remove the headband with just a standard SIM card ejector tool, hinting at the possibility of interchanging headbands to achieve a unique look. Image via Prelook As mentioned in iFixit's teardown of AirPods Max, it is possible to easily remove the headband from AirPods Max without any disassembly of the...
airpods max apple store pickup

AirPods Max Now Available With Same-Day Pickup at Select Apple Stores

Tuesday December 15, 2020 5:50 am PST by
While the AirPods Max face a lengthy 12-14 week delivery estimate for online orders, Apple's new over-ear headphones are now available for same-day pickup at select Apple retail stores in the United States, Canada, and Australia. In the United States, the AirPods Max are currently available for pickup in all color options except Sky Blue, as noted by 9to5Mac's Michael Steeber. To initiate ...
airpods max ear cushions finished

AirPods Max Won't Directly Support Lossless Apple Music Over Lightning

Monday May 17, 2021 1:56 pm PDT by
Earlier today, we confirmed that AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods Max will not support lossless audio over Bluetooth because of Bluetooth limitations, and it turns out there's no direct wired lossless option for the AirPods Max either. Apple's AirPods Max headphones are equipped with a Lightning port, but it is limited to analog sources and will not natively support digital audio formats in ...
airpods max b

Apple's AirPods Max Weigh 384 Grams, Heavier Than Most Competing Over-Ear Headphones

Tuesday December 8, 2020 7:02 am PST by
Anyone who owns a pair of over-ear headphones will tell you that the weight of the headset can make a big difference to the listening experience. Especially if you're wearing headphones for several hours straight, weight starts to have a real impact on overall comfort. Apple's new AirPods Max over-ear headphones weigh 13.6 ounces (384 grams), which might not sound like much, but that's...
airpods max customer photos

AirPods Max Customer Impressions: Premium Design and Competitive Sound Quality, Can Feel Heavy on Ears and Smart Case is Useless

Tuesday December 15, 2020 11:00 am PST by
Today is AirPods Max launch day in the United States and many other countries, and as orders begin arriving, first impressions of the headphones from customers are beginning to surface. We've already shared AirPods Max impressions from media outlets and YouTubers, and customer opinions provide additional perspective. AirPods Max photos shared by MacRumors forum member Boardiesboi MacRumors...
airpods max hands on

AirPods Max Unboxing Videos: 'More Than Good Enough to Compete With Other High-End Headphones'

Thursday December 10, 2020 6:27 am PST by
Earlier this week, Apple introduced new wireless over-ear headphones called AirPods Max, and first impressions and unboxing videos have now surfaced from various media outlets and YouTube channels. Priced at $549, the AirPods Max launch December 15. A first real-life look at AirPods Max via CNET AirPods Max feature a 40-mm Apple-designed dynamic driver that is said to provide "rich, deep...
airpods max blue

Gurman: Apple Not Working on Second-Generation AirPods Max, But Has Considered New Colors

Friday May 28, 2021 6:11 am PDT by
In a report focused on upcoming third-generation AirPods and second-generation AirPods Pro, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman added that Apple has yet to start working on second-generation AirPods Max, although he said the company has discussed launching additional color variations for the over-ear headphones in the future. The relevant bit from the report:The last AirPods-related hardware...
airpods max reaons 4

Five Reasons Why You Might Want to Consider AirPods Max

Wednesday December 23, 2020 2:08 pm PST by
Since the launch of the AirPods Max last week, we've done a couple of videos sharing a brief hands-on with Apple's new over-ear headphones and a comparison of them to other popular noise-cancelling headphones from Bose, Sony, and Sennheiser. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. There's been a lot of debate about whether the AirPods Max are worth their $550 price tag,...
AirPods mix and max hero

Here Are All 25 AirPods Max Color Combinations You Can Make With Swappable Ear Cushions

Tuesday December 8, 2020 10:37 am PST by
Apple's new AirPods Max headphones feature magnetically attachable ear cushions, and replacement ear cushion sets will soon be available for $69 on Apple's online store, providing customers with the opportunity to mix and match colors. MacRumors graphics designer Ryan Barrieau has mocked up all 25 possible combinations, providing a helpful look at the various options. While many of the...