The original effect of music is as good as the speakers, headphones or earbuds used. A superior quality headphone can transform the listening experience, and it pays to have a suitable model. Are you stuck with an inconclusive choice of headphones?
Unsure if you need to look for specific performance parameters or total value for money? Well, here’s a concise handbook that will help you to choose the most suitable wireless noise-canceling headphones. When you’re done reading this, you will have the knowledge required to decide if the model you’ve shortlisted is the ideal one. To help you, let’s start with the basics.
5 Best Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones
Top five best-selling wireless noise blocker headphones
Now that you have a good enough idea of what to look for in noise cancelling headphones, here is a review of the top five best-selling models. This feature by feature review is intended to help you understand the performance of each product in specific functionalities. You can then compare the specs of different models to choose the one that is most suited to your needs.
1. Sony WH 1000XM3
27 hours playtime
Snug fit, ergonomic design
Active Noise Cancelling Headphones with Microphone
Voice Assistant enabled
Advanced single touch gesture controls
Automatic ambient noise cancellation
With 27 hours of battery backup, and the best Active Noise Cancellation among all wireless headphones in the market, this is definitely a great choice. You can use it outdoors and immerse yourself fully into music without disturbing or getting disturbed.
Hands free calling and the headband design makes this the ideal outdoor companion. Sound quality is impressive, with bass and treble accuracy ensuring that you get to listen to realistic sound reproduction.
The companion app adds more value to the product, as you get to control a lot of functions, enabling you to conveniently use the buttons for frequently used controls.
The gesture control permits you to turn down the volume by merely cupping the right ear cup, dispensing with the need for using the volume down control.
What’s not so great in these headphones?
The headphones do not function properly in extreme cold. Therefore, if you intend to use it outdoors when it’s cold, you may get a sub-par experience.
2. Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2
30 hours battery
High resolution drivers offer superior quality sound
Active Noise Cancellation
Excellent connectivity upto 300 feet
Sturdy build quality
Consistent frequency response
This most comfortable over ear headphones offer unique performance when compared with other models in certain functions.
For instance, this has probably the best connectivity, in terms of distance, letting you connect your headphones to a Bluetooth device that is 300 feet away.
The battery pack is exceptional, giving you playtime of 30 hours. The build is sturdy and durable. Active Noise Cancellation is good enough and the best part about this model is the superb sound reproduction quality. You will enjoy the consistent frequency response of this model and the impressive Bass, Treble accuracy.
Noise isolation on the microphone is decent, which means that you can make and receive calls without the ambient noise affecting the conversation.
What’s not so great about this model?
The ANC is not the best in the range, and the on-ear model clamps keep the air out tightly, which means that you can use it at a stretch for a limited time, after which you may find yourself sweating a bit.
3. Mpow H10
Hybrid Active Sound Blocking Headphones
23 hours battery, quick charge
40mm large-aperture drivers – superior stereo and deep bass
Memory foam ear cups for snug fit
PS4/Xbox audio compatible with wired connections, without mic
This is a good choice, as the hybrid active noise cancellation feature is not found on other models. The quick charging option gives you a full charge in a short time. The HiFi stereo sound and the deep bass will certainly make the experience of having one more enjoyable.
The model is lightweight, which means that the snug-fitting headphone will become an extension of you easily as you workout or use it outdoors.
This is compatible with all devices – android, iOS, and tablets. It has lower latency, which means that you will have a great experience when watching television as it reduces lag. Micro USB charging is convenient in addition to speeding up the process.
What’s not so great about this model?
This does not come with a companion app, so you will have to use the buttons for all your configuration and settings. Sound leakage needs improvement, especially considering that the form factor is slightly large.
4. Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700
Voice assistants integration
Active noise cancellation – 11 presets
20 hours playtime
Adaptive mic delivers unmatched voice pickup
Bluetooth 4.0 – 33 feet wireless connectivity
Pairing option with other Bose products
The reputation of the company is often enough for individuals to make a purchase. As specialists in sound engineering, Bose has its own loyal customer base. The sound quality is arguably one among the best of all the best-selling models.
You get 20 hours of playtime in the over the head model. The combination of Active Noise Cancellation and adaptive mic for excellent pickup makes this a unique combination. With Voice Assistant integration, you will find that using voice commands for functions makes it a breeze to handle the device.
What’s not so great about this model?
A model that has all the trappings of a leader, has a poor companion app, which means that using the app for connecting may become an ordeal and frustrating to users. Bose products usually have long distance connectivity, however, this offers 33 feet of connectivity, which is a let-down for Bose products.
5. Sennheiser Momentum Wireless 2.0
Bluetooth 4.0 and Active Noise Cancellation
22 hours battery with quick charge option
Dual microphones significantly improve voice quality and aid noise isolation in calls
Collapsible headset, ideal for packing when travelling light
Wired connectivity option
SAC, AAC, aptX codecs
Despite the relatively smaller form factor, this model offers exceptional hybrid noise cancellation. You will love to use it outdoors without being disturbed by the sound around you. With 22 hours of battery time, you have enough playtime outdoors when out of reach of a charging point.
The bass and mid- range are exceptional and you will love the sound quality. The collapsible frame helps you to stow away the headphones when travelling light.
The aptX Bluetooth and ANC are features that make the model proud, while the buttons on the right earcup help you to swiftly control the headphones. The NFC (Near Field Communication) function gives you the advantage of tapping your headphone against the device that you want to connect with, eliminating the need for complex pairing processes.
What’s not so great about this model?
The build quality could do with a bit of improvement. While it is not on the flimsy side, you may find it necessary to handle this with a bit of care. Not suitable for rough handling.
Things to look for in Most Durable Bluetooth Headphones
The present latest version of Bluetooth is 5.0. All advanced versions are backward compatible, which means that the device with the higher version will automatically work in tandem with the device having the lower version.
Therefore, if you have a device with a lower Bluetooth version, you need not have apprehensions that a higher version will not work with your device. For the purpose of comparison, the best version as on date is Bluetooth 4.2 or 5.0. The advantage of these versions are lower energy consumption, high speed and reduced interference.
Remember, these are capabilities of the version, and its use depends on the manufacturer. In other words, a device with the highest version is not a guarantee that all features are incorporated.
Batteries in headphones are embedded and rechargeable. Choose a battery that will power the headphones for atleast 25 hours or more. This will remove the hassles of frequently charging the headphone.
Models that have auto power off timers are a good choice, as this will conserve and extend battery power. Here, it is also important to check out the time taken for a full charge.
As most models come with USB Type C connectors, the average time taken for a full charge is typically around 150 minutes. Do not settle for a model that will take an insane amount of time for a full charge, because in most models, you cannot play audio when the device is charging.
The use of a companion app will great help in managing configuration and other settings of the headphones. This will also make the model less complicated in terms of design and reduce the number of buttons.
Too many buttons on a headphone can make it confusing to handle the functions. With a companion app, you can sort out the features, profiles and functions easily, leaving only the frequent operations to the buttons on the headphones.
Additional Wired Features
It is true that you are looking for a wireless headphone, having an additional wired connection capability helps. This is important if you plan to use the headphones on a device that does not have wireless connectivity options.
Your headphones should cancel out the sounds that are not from the device to which it is connected. True wireless headphones with active noise cancellation helps improve the listening quality.
All audio in the device needs to be clearly separated and protected from ambient noise, which will permit you to use the headphones in noisy surroundings. Advanced models give you the option of adjusting the settings to let in or block out the noise from the surroundings. This will help you be aware of your surroundings if you are out on a walk or jogging/cycling.
Wireless headphones are also used outdoors and in public places. You would not want the person beside you to listen to the conversation you are having, and you would certainly not want to disturb others with the music from your headphones.
You therefore need a headphone that prevents sound from your headphones leaking out to the surroundings. Choose a model that handles sound leakage efficiently.
Type of Microphone
The microphone in your device should offer three different functions that will make a difference to the use of the device. It needs to handle and separate the noise from the surroundings so that speech is crystal clear on the microphone.
The microphone should have consistent, good quality sound recording ability – this will make the voice sound more realistic. Finally, the microphone needs to be built into the device, rather than using an external mic.
Headphones that are compatible with other devices such PS4/Xbox will help you if you are a gamer. However, this may not be supported in all models; most models that have wired connectivity options permit the user to connect the cable into the controller.
This will permit you to listen to audio, but you will not be able to use the microphone. In most of the devices, Bluetooth compatibility is limited to PCs only.
That’s the roundup of the top five models in the market for wireless noise cancelling headphones. Here, it is important to understand that each model has been chosen with great care to meet the specific requirement of users.
For instance, if you were the workout type, then the best choice would be a model. Similarly if you are the frequent flyer type, then you need a model with the best active noise cancellation. We have therefore picked these models on the basis of popular categories of users. Here is a look at suitability of models for specific categories of users.
Sony. The exceptional performance of Sony makes it a good choice for sound quality.
Bose. This is the second-best when it comes to sound quality.
Mpow. The design and heat generated when in use makes this a great choice if you intend to use headphones more during workouts.
Plantronics. This is the second best choice when it comes to suitability for work outs.
Compact Model For Light Traveler
Sennheiser. Nothing will beat this model when it comes to a compact design. It looks great, and its collapsible design makes it easy to store. With 22 hours of battery, you will find that it is suitable for use outdoors for sufficiently long periods of time.
Mpow. This is the second-best option when it comes to the compact design and battery life combination.
Use In Noisy Environment Outdoors Type
Sony. This offers the best in class noise cancellation, making it the ideal choice for use in noisy environments.
Sennheiser. This is the second best option for noise cancellation.
Mpow. This is the next best choice with its hybrid active noise cancellation.
Remember, all the five models reviewed have impressive performance in all features. However, certain models perform best in certain areas, making these models most suitable for specific requirements. However, this does not make any of the models unsuitable for use in other cases.