Our lives revolve around different gadgets that highly impact how we live in a society. Headphones have become one of the most important gadget people own today. Wherever you go, you will see people around you using headphone for various purposes. Whether it is for official use, listening music during workout, playing high setting games, you need an upgrade to a good-quality headphones. This will let you get a feel of great sound that you are listening to.
Finding the best headphone has become really difficult today. There are plenty of models with different specifications and sound quality that it gets tricky to choose the one that suits your style and listening habit. A type of best headphone is quite vast. Different headphones will be better for different situations, choosing the right tool that fits your need is essential. Like many other things you get what you pay for. The higher the price is the better specs and features a headphone will offer. Therefore, you need to look into your need and budget first while going through the options available.
To make it easy for you, we have compiled the best headphones in general that includes wireless headphones, bass headphones, noise cancelling headphones and in-ear or over-ear headphones of different style and budget.
Best Headphones 2021:
- Sony WH – 1000XM3
- Bose Quiet Comfort 35 II
- Bose Noise-Cancelling 700
- Sony MDRZX 110
- Audio Technica ATH-M50x
- Steelseries Arctic Pro
- Beat Powerbeats Pro
- Cowin E7 Active
- Skull Candy Crusher
- Sennheiser Mommentum 2.0
Best Headphones 2021
1. Sony WH – 1000XM3
Sony WH 1000XM3 is a perfect blend of best features. Sony WH-1000XM3 is the best headphone one can own in 2021. With its long lasting battery, outstanding wireless sound and superb noise- cancelling feature, Sony has proven itself best in a market. It delivers the beautiful and dynamic sound.
The new processor of HD’s Noise Cancelling Processor QN1 helps to reduce the noise of surroundings. It takes you to the next level of quietness. Wherever you are it gives the feel of an empty room. Its voice-only mode let you filter through all other sounds and let you enjoy the feel of the music you are listening to.
It comes in a very design in two colors, Black and Champagne Gold. The frames are very convenient to wear as it does not fall off. With its 9- ounces weight its quite light and comfortable. The ear cups padding is relatively thick and soft. It fits well on ears not causing any insignificant pressure on your head. The general touch controls are pretty smooth and accurate to manage commands easily. The sound and audio quality is great. They are suitable for the bass lover and grant listeners. Hence, if you are music lover who enjoy being isolated from outside world and is a long listener then this is the best you will get.
2. Bose Quiet Comfort 35 II
Bose is a market leader in headphones industry since years coming up with most premium, innovative and high quality headphones. Best headphone on noise cancellation and wireless feature is the Bose Quiet Comfort 35 II. It has a very sleeker design filled with leather cushion at outer cup that makes it very comfortable to wear. You can easily wear it for long sessions and won’t get tired because of its light weight. It comes in black and silver color. Further, the Google Assistance button helps you to give commands easily e.g., asking about weather, location of a certain place etc.
It gives you an edge to manage your tasks without even looking at your phone/tab. The sound quality Quiet Comfort deliver is clear, crisp and wide. Microphones work really well that you never get to hear a complaint from other side of a call regarding voice disturbance.
Moreover, it is best with its advance technology of noise – cancellation to block rest of the world around you. Whether you are roaming around in streets, attending official meeting or working out in a crowded gym you wouldn’t hear anything other than the sound you are listening to. The battery life is great. You can easily use it for longer period without any issue. Quiet Comfort is best for the ones who need Google Assistance feature and want to avoid outside noise.
3. Bose Noise-Cancelling 700
Bose has headphones has redefined the Noise-Cancelling feature. It is the king. They have expanded noise- cancelling to phone calls as well which make it the best in market. The sound quality is excellent and clear to the other side of call. As of music, it is ranked as best bass headphone as the sound gives high beat to instruments. From sound management to music management, the Bose Music app gives you even more control and ensures your Bose smart products work together for a better listening experience
One thing on which it took an edge over QC 35II is the design. It is crafted around stainless steel headband and is in cylindrical shape. It comes in two colors as well, black and silver. The ear cups have been improved too, they are super soft and comfortable that gives much lightweight feel. Enclosed ear cups are super soft and comfortable. As of touch controls, they are very intuitive. And it also comes with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa so that you can give voice over commands. If you are looking for Sony and Bose 700, then go for former for its best noise-cancellation feature, better battery life and comparatively low price.
4. Sony MDRZX 110
Sony MDRZX110 is one of the best on-ear headphones for entry level that have great sounding quality. 30mm driver units deliver full, balance sound for a complete listening experience. It delivers punchy and crisp sound to all the tracks with good bass. It also comes with a great microphone and that works really well when listening and responding to phone calls. This also works great with gaming on your PC/Playstation/Laptops etc. The sound in gaming is real time hence giving a great experience.
Apart from sound quality they are very comfortable to wear. Fit perfectly on your ears, the headband is self-adjusting and the ear cups have soft cushion so you don’t feel uncomfortable while using it. The swivel design makes it easier for you to hear music from different angles and ways as you can turn your headphones. Moreover, the closed –design make you feel isolated from outside distractions and let you lost in the feel of music. Also this comes with tangle free wires which are of great benefit, you do not have to untie the knots frequently and enjoy the music fully. Overall if you are looking for reasonable headphone with best sound quality and a great look, the SONY MDRZX110 is the right product for you.
5. Audio Technica ATH-M50x
Audio Technica ATH-M50x is the excellent headphone for the people who love heavy bass. They are designed by keeping in mind Beats to provide best sound and strong bass. They are known for brilliant sound quality through an extended frequency range. Bass is clearer and punchy which make it fun for listening music. This headphone does not have a mic which is major drawback. While working with it you will need to buy a microphone separately. Moreover, Bluetooth 5 wireless connectivity and battery life is extraordinary for the money you pay.
As of design, it is well built and has a solid look. The quality used for built is good but not premium. The ear cups are of plush padding that gives comfort to your ears making it easy for you wear for long sessions. The feel of over-ear headphone is very comfortable as well. The headband can be adjusted as per your need. Even when you are not using the headphones then you can rotate it to 180 degree to have a rest. The sizes of ear cups are decent and are soft. They also work well to make you feel isolated from the world with zero leakage of sound from the ear cups. Overall the design is very attractive and it works well for the music lovers.
6. Steelseries Arctic Pro
SteelSeries has fueled the gaming industry for over 15 years by creating innovative new products, designed specifically for sports and passionate gamers everywhere. It has evolved the gaming headphones form bassy to more of an audiophile. The sound quality is extraordinary that make you lost in the gaming experience. The Arctis Pro Wireless has the visible metal headband and the matte finish which feel more delicate. Its design is very sleek and comfortable made with luxurious steel and aluminum alloy. The ear cups are comfortable and are shaped naturally around your ears. You easily enjoy the gaming experience at your comfort zone.
The best feature of Arctis Pro is GameDac, digital to analog audio converter giving the high sound quality to the gamers. Another feature is Amplifier circuit that also helps in removing distortions to minimum and gives the best gaming experience. Steel-series Arctis Pro is widely recognized as the best mic in gaming and is specifically made for the gamer who look for high quality audio to enjoy ultimate gaming experience. If you are a robust gamer and looking for a great headphone then this one is for you. It will meet your expectation of heavy sound quality complementing the graphics.
7. Beat Powerbeats Pro
Newest addition in Powerbeats family that keeps you moving with its best wireless headphones. It is specifically designed for athletes to take out workout and sport to next level. Its built is lightweight along with sweat & water resistance. Your music never stops with its long lasting battery and balanced sound from each ear bud. It keeps you occupied and motivated towards your workout. Each ear bud has a microphone, full volume and track controls so that you get maximum benefit from using it.
Powerbeats pro is highly compatible with iPhone and Android devices with its Apple H1 chip installed. It delivers powerful and stable wireless connection without any dropouts to give you premium experience. The voice controls are very strong. “Hey Siri” on iOS devices and voice capability with the push of the b button on a variety of compatible devices let you manage your gadget. Overall, powerbeats pro is the best wireless headphone for athletes who enjoy and live music to fullest.
8. Cowin E7 Active
Cowin E7 Active is the best budget noise cancelling headphones. With significant noise cancelling technology you get to enjoy whatever you are listening to whether you are at work, train or crowded road. They make quiet sound quieter and music sound better. You get to hear the musical instruments in a way that you have never experienced. It gives amazing sound to beats; precise guitars, clear vocals and clean bass everything sounds better to your ears. Bluetooth and NFC connections are quick and easy Overall, you get to experience world-class performance and superior comfort without any wires in your way.
As far design is concerned, it is quite stylish and lightweight to wear for longer period without any issue. Built with professional protein ear pads are comfortable and soft that gives a relaxed feel to your ears. The built is quite robust and strong. But they fit tight on some heads due to which not quite practical for running and working out as your head feel heavier. They have responsive and click buttons for volume control, call/music, and skipping tracks. Not to forget, the battery life is the best thing you can use it for 16+ hours without being worried for its charging. Overall, you get what you paid for and in this case, some faithful excellent headphones.
9. Skull Candy Crusher
Skull Candy Crusher is all the bass that you need in life. It is built for the people who are heavy bass lovers and want to have a feel of Music Shows or Concerts anywhere they want. The sound is incredibly great and gives a great bass that you can feel vibration. It perfectly fits for gaming, movies and music purpose where the sound quality and heavy bass is everything you look for. Moreover, the microphones are of excellent quality and when on call both sides can hear very well.
The design is of white and black matte finish. The material used for ear cups or headband looks little cheap as it gets marks on it easily. The headphones are very heavy and sturdy. However, the ear cups are very comfortable and the head strap is of soft silicon which really balances out the weight. Skullcandy’s Crusher wireless headphones offer an excellent battery life for a reasonable price. The biggest problem you will see is that they don’t have noise-cancellation and there is good amount of sound bleed. Wherever you are, people around you can hear very clear what you are listening to. Other issue with this is the cut-off point for the bass slider. Sliding it any more than halfway up made most songs hard to listen to. In conclusion, this bass headphone is exclusively for people who enjoy and look for heavy bass.
10. Sennheiser Mommentum 2.0
Sennheiser is creating a new world of audio. They are continuously working on innovation putting in effort to set new trend and benchmark for its rivals in the market. The Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 are a second attempt at full-size, style-driven headphones from Sennheiser. The design is similar to the previous one however; ear cups size has increased this time to make it fit for big ears too. Memory foam cushions provide extreme comfort for long listening sessions. It does not weight heavier on head hence, you can use it easily for workout. Further, It is built with premium stainless steel and original leather.
One of the most impressive elements of the Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 is quite how deep the bass goes without sounding forced. Also, Noise Guard Hybrid active noise cancellation makes your audio sounds much clear and crisp by eliminating ambient sounds. Overall, the sound quality is quite warm and relaxed for your ears. But they are not good at soundstage. It feels a bit narrow. On top of that Momentum 2 Wireless has a remarkable 22hrs battery life, a choice of wired or wireless connection, USB DAC support to connect to your smartphone or PC/laptop. In conclusion, it is a good pair of headphone but not great for its price and a compromise on comfort.
Buyers Guide – Choosing the best Headphone
Which Headphone is best for you? In order to evaluate the best headphone in market you need to listen to it to know the quality of sound. Headphones are not cheap, thus you cannot blindly spent money and then later on feel disappointed. There are some tiny details that you should consider before getting your hand on headphones. We have listed down some guides that may help you.
How you plan to use your headphone? If you don’t have any idea on how will you be using your headphones and kind of features you look for to satisfy the need then you may end up spending a lot of money for a wrong pair of headphones. And you will be dissatisfied. Whether it’s for listening music at gym, or for travelling, there is a different headphone for different situation. Therefore, before looking into type and brand to go for you need to identify the purpose or need first.
Wider the frequency range is the better sound quality is. For headphones, 10 Hz to 25,000 Hz is recommended. Also look into sound curve, frequency response curve and sound signature. This signifies the quality of headphone and how much they are worth to pay for. There are headphones which are really cheap under $100 that give flat sound to any music you hear. Moreover, the heavy bass doesn’t always means that it is of good quality too. There are many headphones that give bass but it sound muddy and of low quality.
Referring to blocking outside noise and enjoying the feel of music to self only. Increasing volume is not a solution to avoid outside noise as it just results in sound leakage. Other people can hear whatever you are listening to which you do not want obviously. Sound Isolation is very important for you to concentrate and don’t feel distracted whether you are working out or travelling in a plane/train. It let you focus and enjoy on what are you listening. So, it is very important feature that you should look for.
How much headphone will cost? The features and specification it is showing are they worth the price you are paying? This is one of the most important questions you ask yourself when evaluating different brands and models in the market. You need to accept the fact that the better the quality, more features and specs, and higher the price will be. You can buy a less costly headphone but then you have to compromise on many factors like; comfort, battery life, sound quality etc. Brands like Sony and Beats offer the best in the market to come up with premium headphones in terms of design, comfortable ear cups, great bass, sound isolation etc. You need to decide your budget and what options you have. Headphones are believed to be one time investment for long years as no one changes it frequently until there is a big flaw. Then why not spend it on a good headphone that is a complete package.
It refers to the amount of power needed to drive headphones. Low Impedance need less power to drive and is compatible with smartphones, media players, tab etc. They cannot absorb heavy amplification. High Impedance requires high power and strong amplification. They are less likely to blow out. Impedance is shown as ‘hms’ in specification description so you need to have a look into it and choose the headphone based on the device you will be using your headphone on.
On-Ear or Over-Ear Headphones
You need to identify what type you want. On year rests on your ear while over ear covers your entire ear. On ear style have a headband that keeps the ear cups in place securely in your ears but they are not comfortable for long session due to heavy pressure they put in. On other hand, over-ear styles are large but comfortable for long sessions as the cups fit perfectly on ears. The ear cups are usually soft and headband weight light hence relatively better than on-ear.
Open or Closed Headphones
Open Headphone does have a hole at the back of drive enclosure. They allow the sound to escape outside. It has an open sound that gives realistic experience of listening music and playing games. It is really comfortable and is soft to your ears and head. On the other hand, closed headphone does not have any hole and is designed to give privacy in listening music while headphones are on. It is practical for public places as there is no sound leakage and all the sounds are restricted to your ears. This headphone is specifically targeted to people who live by the feel of music and do not want others to get an idea of what they are listening to.
Wired or Wireless
With advancement in technology over the years, the wireless headphone has gain a lot of importance. People are moving from wired to wireless. These are fee of chords and wires and work well through Bluetooth, infrared and radio frequency. Wireless headphones has increased portability and freed people of wires so that they can use it outdoor. Moreover, the overall quality and battery life has increased too in wireless headphone. Wired headphones are not choice of many people due to portability issue. But they have better quality of sound and you do not need to worry about charging batteries.