About 3 years ago I got a Bose QC35 and an iPhone 7 at same time. Listening to my music was a new experience then, mostly because of Bose I think. Before I used an iPhone 3GS with the earphone that came with it. I also used 2015 MBP and iPad Air 2.
Last year I got the earpods and this year an iPhone 12 mini. With all these I tend to stick to the old iPad Air 2 with Bose headphones which sounds better for me. Is it just me? Is there something on iPad which might make it sound different/better than newer iPhone?
I listen to music on Apple Music only. While using Bose headphone it was always via Bluetooth. I've never used the Lightning adapter.