Best Wireless Headphones
Whether you are going for a run or working out wireless headphones help in various activities to be able to not have to move around your headphone wires. With all this in mind, we provide you with the top ten best wireless headphones in the market today. We also listed detailed criteria on each product to help you get a better idea for which one suits your needs.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 11 hrs of research
You can download the Bose Connect app for more functionality
The adjustable noise cancellation is a huge bonus
The comfort is exceptional
- Bose QuietComfort 35
- Sony WH1000XM2
- Sennheiser PXC 550
- Sennheiser Momentum
- B&O Play
- Jaybird X3
- Bose Soundsport
- Bowers & Wilkins P5
- Plantronics Backbeat
- Audio Technica
- Criteria Used for Evaluation
- Other Factors to Consider
- Frequently Asked Questions
Top 10 Picks
1. Bose QuietComfort 35
You can download the Bose Connect app for more functionality
The adjustable noise cancellation is a huge bonus
The comfort is exceptional
Users have griped about the limited maximum volume
Not the best microphone for phone calls
Universally, there may not be a more acclaimed wireless headphone than the QuietComfort 35 Series II from Bose. Of course, this should not be much of a surprise as Bose is a lead manufacturer of this technology, no doubt about it.Read more
These over-your-ears headphones are crafted with premium materials that include synthetic leather and ultra-soft Alcantara. Plus, you can sync the headphones with your Bluetooth device with voice prompts.
Not only is there noise cancellation technology present here but you can adjust it to adapt to your current situation. In times where you actually wanted to hear the noises outside, you could simply adjust to it. Plus, there is volume-optimized equalization to enhance the sound.
From the lithium-ion battery, you can expect to get up to 20 hours of battery life on one charge. If you opt to use it in wired mode, this time doubles.
When you use these headphones for receiving phone calls, there is a built-in microphone system that allows you to talk to the other end. But, some users have commented and stated the microphone is simply average in terms of performance.
You get two options for colors here. Either stick with the traditional black-colored version or opt for a slightly more appealing silver version.
There is a reason why so many rave about the QuietComfort Series II Headphones. Its unbelievable sound quality, comfort and functionality can’t be ignored and this is the go-to for wireless headphones.
2. Sony WH1000XM2
Includes a carrying case, a manual and an adapter for airplane travel
Can sync to iOS or Android for further functionality
Are top notch in terms of noise isolation and cancellation
Features a fragile headband
After five minutes of not being connected to a device, they will shut off (can’t be used as a standalone headphone)
Good luck finding a better second place device than these headphones from Sony. Indeed, Sony does more than simply design elite consoles every four or five years. They also design top-of-the-line technology equipment and these are definitely their best.Read more
As compared to the previous Bose headphones, these may be as comfortable as an over-ear headphone (or even more so). But, they are notorious for their rather fragile headband (so be careful to not throw them around).
Besides the noise cancellation technology integrated, the 40mm driver provides high-resolution audio, S-Master HX technology reduces the amount of distortion and enhances the sound, and the LDAC wireless streaming transmits the data in a flash resulting in crisper sound.
These are built to last you a substantial amount of time in one sitting. They feature an impressive battery life of up to 30 hours.
You might as well dub these as smart headphones as that is effectively what they are. It features smart listening that will detect your activity and adjust the ambient sounds accordingly, and touch control that will adjust the volume and allow you to skip tracks with a simple touch of the headphone.
Again, two color options are available for you to select from. Obviously, you have a black-colored version but you can also select gold headphones.
Sony could have designed a more durable headband, but it is easy to forgive them when you address the sound quality and convenience of their headphones. After all, simply properly caring should suffice for you.
3. Sennheiser PXC 550
Features a triple microphone array that offers exceptional vocal clarity
Delivers up to 30 hours of battery life on one charge
You can turn on/off the noise cancelling by simply double tapping the touchpad
The bass is not the most powerful
Some users have griped about the comfort over long periods of use
Not only do these headphones dish out exceptional sound quality, albeit, with a limited base, they do so for an unprecedented 30 hours without needing to be recharged. For most people, this will require one or two charges every few weeks.Read more
Just as headphones should be, Sennheiser designed their PXC 550 headphones to be as lightweight, comfortable, and portable as possible. Clearly, they achieved this very adequately.
Sennheiser implements their signature sound quality, in conjunction with the ability to select certain playback modes and adaptive noise cancellation, to ensure a high-quality listening experience. But, the bass is limited and a bit timid.
Indeed, the battery life is one of the stand-out features here. Its 30 hours of energy on a single charge should be suitable for most.
All the goodies with Bluetooth technology and smart control are present with the PXC 550 headphones. This includes voice prompts, smart pausing and touch controls.
While there are no further color options past black, it is hard to argue with this selection as it should be feasible for almost everyone.
If you are looking for a pair of headphones that dishes out a ridiculous amount of bass and power, these may not be what you are looking for. However, if you are searching for a crisp and clear sound and utter convenience, you have found the lucky ticket.
4. Sennheiser Momentum
Is backed by Sennheiser’s two-year warranty
Features a great blend of leather and stainless steel
Features a built-in VoiceMax microphone for excellent quality during phone calls
Several have griped about the comfortability over long periods
Some users have had issues with Bluetooth syncing
As opposed to the other headphones, the Momentum model from Sennheiser is designed as on-ear headphones. Unfortunately, while they can be uncomfortable for long uses, the overall aesthetic and integrated technology certainly make them worth it.Read more
Because these are on-ear headphones, the speakers are smaller and the overall makeup is naturally more portable. Plus, it is only crafted with premium material such as stainless steel and leather for unparalleled durability.
Utilizing four different microphones, these are able to deliver phenomenal noise cancellation from the outside elements and improve the quality of the sound as a whole.
With both the Bluetooth and the Noise Gard (which produces the noise cancellation) active, these can last up to 22 hours on a single charge.
It is not just when you are listening to music where the noise cancellation comes into play; when you utilize these headphones for phone calls, two built-in microphones improve the voice quality and reduce the external noise for a clearer conversation.
Either color you choose to go with is visually appealing. This includes both a black and white-colored variation of the same headphones.
For those who prefer it, these are probably the best on-ear wireless headphones on the planet. A few caveats, including questionable comfort over long periods, prevent it from climbing up the ladder further. But, it remains an ideal choice.
5. B&O Play
These are crafted with aluminum, steel and leather
The rechargeable lithium-ion battery lasts up to 19 hours on one charge
Many users rave about the terrific sound quality
Does not feature noise cancellation technology
The buttons on the interface are not marked and can be finicky at first
In terms of pure performance, overall design, and battery life, these headphones are amazing and worth every single penny. Enthusiasts may take issue with the lack of noise cancellation technology, but these remain elite.Read more
Being designed with leather, aluminum, and steel, these over-ear headphones are built to withstand the elements. In addition, whether you would need to or not, you can connect up to eight devices at once.
When these are in wireless mode, the Bluetooth chip fine-tunes the sound with its equalizers to ensure the best quality possible. In the end, the quality is well-balanced all-around.
While not as high as some of the other models on this list, the 19 hours of battery life present here will more than suffice for the average user.
On the sides of these headphones, you will find all the tools you need for adjusting. Simply slide the on/off button for power and adjust your music settings with the other three buttons.
The standard jet-black design is always visually appealing. However, there is also an option for charcoal gray which offers a professional look.
What could possibly be missing from these otherwise amazing headphones? Unfortunately, there is no noise cancellation integrated into these bad boys. While it hurts the overall quality a tad, it certainly should not steer you away completely.
6. Jaybird X3
Coated to wick away moisture and rain
The memory foam tips provide excellent noise cancellation
Overall, users have raved about the sound quality
Without the memory foam, they easily fall out of your ears
Not a great mic when using the device for calling
From a technical standpoint, earphones are not headphones. But, not everyone is interested in headphones as they (generally speaking) are designed with a headband that goes on top of your dome. As such earphones (which hold the same design purpose) are a good alternative and the Jaybird X3 earphones are as good as it gets.Read more
To deliver a secure fit, these are designed from silicone and the ear fins attach to both the top and the back-surface areas of the ear. Plus, the coating is resistant to sweat, rain, and snow.
Thanks to the design, the memory foam works as a remedy for the outside noise as it substantially reduces it. In conjunction with the MySound app, also, you can tweak and enhance the sound.
These type of headphones (or earphones) are not amazing with battery life. But, the Jaybird X3 earphones still offer a solid life of eight hours on a single charge.
Because you can sync these to two separate devices at the same time, you could feasibly listen to music on your iPad and answer calls on your smartphone.
Jaybird provides quite a few color options that can allow you to select a variation that is suitable for your style. This includes alpha green, blackout, Sparta white and roadrash red.
For earphones, this is simply as good as it gets. Besides all its functionality, when using the memory foam covers, these are excellent for working out and physical activity. The speakers fit snugly in your ears and should not fall out.
7. Bose Soundsport
The balance and bass are tremendous
The earbuds are not connected so you can share and listen with your buddies
Comes with a charging case
Either does not have noise cancellation technology or it is severely flawed
Do have common issues with syncing with videos
Bose offers a second tremendous option for those seeking wireless earphones instead of the traditional over-the-head headphones. Despite all its greatness with its performance, possibly one of its best features is you can track them down if you accidentally lose them.Read more
To adapt to different ear sizes, three separate pairs of sport tips come with these earphones (small, medium and large). In addition, the buds themselves are both sweat and weather-resistant.
While not sporting quite the noise cancellation of the Jaybird X3, these are designed to deliver crystal-clear sound with just the right amount of power.
There is no reason to mince words, some may have an issue with the battery life. On one charge, it can only last up to five hours. But, it does come with a charging case that can add an additional 10 hours of use.
If you happen to lose one of the earbuds, which can easily happen due to their size, you can track it down in conjunction with the Bose Connect app.
You are given two options for color and one of them is the obvious and standard black. But, the other is a very vibrant combination of midnight blue and citron.
No, these are certainly not perfect, lacking strong noise cancellation and a subpar battery life, but they are splendid. This is thanks to the brilliant and crystal-clear sound quality that is outputted.
8. Bowers & Wilkins P5
It is backed up by the manufacturer’s two-year warranty
The clarity and quality of the sound stands up to the rest of the pack
Features a very strong battery life of 17 hours
The Bluetooth has ranging and syncing issues
Many users have stated that the headphones are a bit heavy
Bowers & Wilkins have been honing their craft for decades on end and they have delivered a masterful effort with their P5 Headphones. They excel in sound quality and implement an advanced mic system for better phone calls.Read more
The drive units of the P5 are based on the award-winning P7 and the on-ear design results in a more precise diaphragm movement. But, the Bluetooth range is rather poor and so is the syncing as a whole.
Bowers & Wilkins have been working with this technology for nearly half a century and have developed some systems that recording studios use. They have a tremendous history and the sound quality of their P5 headphones is also superb.
If the 17 hours of battery life that this can output in one sitting is not suitable for you, you can save the battery a little with the included cable.
When you answer and take phone calls with these headphones, the CVC2 technology reduces the amount of noise caused by the wind and produces clearer voices as a whole.
Those who prefer going away from “the norm” may be disgruntled to know that Amazon only offers the P5 Headphones in black.
It is always reassuring to invest in something from an established and experienced manufacturer. That is what you get from Bowers & Wilkins as they used their years of judgment to produce an exceptional pair of headphones.
9. Plantronics Backbeat
Comes with a travel sleeve
Features smart sensors that will stop your music when you remove the headphones
The sound quality is highly impressive
Sometimes, the sensors will stop the music even when you do not take off your headphones
Not the most efficient noise cancellation technology
Possibly the single best feature of the Plantronics Backbeat Headphones can also be its worst. The manufacturer integrates smart sensors that will automatically pause your music when you remove the headphones from your head. But, users have noted that this technology will stop their music unnecessarily at times.Read more
When you hear someone mention headphones, these are the depiction that oftentimes will be planted in your head. They are a traditional ear-over design and are very sleek.
Clearly, this is where the Backbeat headphones shine. Its amazing combination of powerful drivers, high-resolution sound and natural mid-tones deliver a terrific balance of bass. Also, it features noise cancellation that can be turned on and off depending on your preference. But, some have claimed it does not work efficiently.
For up to 24 hours on a single charge, you can enjoy all the luxuries that these headphones deliver to you.
Besides the ability to connect to two Bluetooth devices simultaneously, these also come included with a travel sleeve to protect them when you are traveling.
The lone color option, which is not black this time around, is very well-designed and should appeal to a wide audience. It mixes in a perfect amount of tan with black.
At a glimpse, you would think this set of headphones would be higher on this list. But, the small caveats that are present simply prevent it from doing so. Still, there is a lot to boast about here.
10. Audio Technica
They support AAC, aptX and aptX HD codecs for high-quality wireless transmission
Features LED indicator lights for battery life and charging status
The sound is crystal clear
The featured Micro USB charging port is only compatible with the included cable
Not the best controls and can be a hassle to use
These are an ideal example of why devices can’t be solely judged on their price tag. One would think, with the hefty sum, these would be top-of-the-line. Instead, while not the best, Audio-Technica designed a highly competent pair of headphones with some slight flaws.Read more
These are certainly not cheap and as such, you would imagine the designer would manufacture their product with something more substantial than plastic. Alas, that is what you are left with here (even though it is still designed well as a whole).
What makes the sound quality so impeccable here is the terrific combination of the 45mm true motion driver and four-core twisted OFC-7N technology.
On a full charge of continuous use, these speakers will last up to 15 hours before you need to recharge them again.
The Bluetooth connectivity allows you to answer your phone calls and adjust the music settings wirelessly. But, truly noteworthy here are the LED indicator lights that display the battery level, charging status, and Bluetooth pairing on the headphones.
Generally speaking, it is difficult to go wrong with black and Audio-Technica proves that with distinction
For such an expensive pair of headphones, it is fair if you expected more from the craftsmanship. Still, the integrated components and technology all hold up extremely well to the competition.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Although most will focus on the internal makeup of headphones and the speakers themselves, it all starts with the overall craftsmanship. You want the headphones to be fairly durable, although it is not as if they will go through much abuse, and also comfortable. If you intend to wear headphones for hours on end, you clearly want a model that excels in comfort. But, when it comes to the overall design, it really comes down to whether you want an over-ear, on-ear, or earphone model.
On-ear and over-ear headphones are fairly similar and both feature headbands that sit over your head. The difference is on-ear headphones feature speaker pads that rest on the outer ear, while over-ear models encircle the entire ear. While over-ear models are generally superior in terms of encapsulated sound quality (the drivers are farther apart in the speaker) and comfort for extended periods of time, their biggest flaw is their size. Some may prefer a less bulky headphone and you would be looking for an on-ear model. Then, there are earphones which are more suitable for workouts (as they will not shake on your head) and people who prefer to not have their hair ruined on important days.
For some, this is the single most vital aspect when looking for headphones. To be honest, it is not a bad design feature to prioritize because it truly is vitally important. Sound quality is everything for headphones and speakers for that matter. If the sound is distorted and very scratchy, you are clearly not going to want to listen to it. Plus, some people have different preferences. You may prefer a deeper or softer bass or wish to adjust the treble. This is where it is convenient when you can switch between different playback modes and alter the music settings.
Of course, you can’t mention sound quality without addressing noise cancellation and isolation. For those new to this, when a manufacturer states that their headphones have noise cancellation it means that when you are listening to music with them on, noises and sounds are eliminated from the outside. Thus, not requiring you to turn up the volume when you are near places with excess noise. But, in certain instances, you may actually want to hear what is happening outside making it suitable when you can adjust the noise cancellation.
This one is pretty self-explanatory but that does not make it irrelevant or non-important. When it comes to technology devices that are self-powered (not requiring electricity from an outlet), they are only going to last for a certain amount of time before they need power again. This number can mean everything for you; it just depends on your preference and how you intend to use your headphones. For those who are aiming to use them on a regular basis for extended periods of time, you will be looking for headphones with a substantial battery life.
For the models that were documented on this list, anything that falls between 20 to 30 hours is an excellent time. But, if it falls beneath that, it does not indicate that the headphones are incapable. If you listen to music a few times a week for only a few hours, 15 hours could get you three to four weeks of use before needing to charge them up again. In terms of wireless vs wired headphones, this is one of the few drawbacks to wireless.
You may not find this design element suitable for a guide of this magnitude. However, if you had the choice and both headphones where extravagant, would you pick the version that had a better aesthetic and visual appeal? Of course, you would and you know it. The simple option of picking from a few color options could end up being the deicing factor for you. Looking at it the other way, though, it is not as if you should prioritize a certain model only for its color. But, you will be wearing the headphones so you might as well look good doing it, right?
Expert Interviews & Opinions
The simple elimination of a single cable can make all the difference in the world. But, as you now know, despite what others may claim to you, wireless headphones can output some wickedly crisp and clear audio. Keep in mind you may also have the option of altering certain settings with voice commands or touch controls. For example, a simple touch of the headphones may adjust the volume or allow you to skip a track on your current playlist. Or, it may be as simple as informing your headphones to sync by merely using your voice. Of course, for some this may be important, the number of devices you can sync at one time could also come into play. The ability to answer a call from your smartphone while also being connected to your iPod can save you the hassle of syncing from one to another.
Other Factors to Consider
Bluetooth technology, most of the time, is what allows wireless headphones to work. Of course, Bluetooth technology only works if everything is compatible. So, you will need a device that integrates Bluetooth to function any of these headphones (so be aware of that). With Bluetooth, past the obvious fact, you get headphones that are free from wires, you also get several other convenient features. This will depend on the specific headphones, but a lot of them will also allow you to take and receive calls from your phone (if the headphones have a microphone installed).
Frequently Asked Questions
It is interesting that this question got brought up but many have asked this across the globe. For those unfamiliar with what a soundbar is, it is essentially a surround sound system that is shrunk into a single bar. So, when you ask yourself this question you need to think about what is being asked. Can one device that outputs sound be connected to another that outputs audio? Even if it could, and if they both have Bluetooth enabled they feasibly could, what would be the purpose? The wireless headphones integrate all the technology you need for crisp and clear sound, just as the soundbar does. Perhaps, if you could not connect them to your television you would want to do so. But, it does not seem necessary all the same.
Remember when we said that Bluetooth is not foolproof. Yeah, it really is not. Besides audio issues, there may be instances where your devices will not pair altogether. For this example, let’s say you are attempting to connect to an iOS device. For starters, it may be as simple as needing to bring the two devices closer to one another. If not, check the simple troubleshooting. Such as, ensure that your Bluetooth headphones are turned on and fully charged and make sure the Bluetooth is enabled on your iOS device (or whatever device you are attempting to sync to).
Also, if you are using a phone’s operating system, download the latest update as it could simply be out of date. If none of this works, unpair both devices and shut them down. Turn them back on and try again.
Much like everything else in the world, gaming has adapted over the years and gaming consoles have become gaming computers. One of the most popular being the PlayStation 4 from Sony. But, if you have ever played this system or own one, it actually does not have built-in Bluetooth functionality. Thankfully, this issue can be resolved so that way you can utilize any of the above headphones with the console.
Basically, you will need to get your hands on the SuperSpot FreeMe. With this, you will receive a USB dongle and a 3.5mm microphone. The dongle will plug directly into your PS4, while the microphone will plug into your controller. From there, you simply pair your new wireless headphones with the dongle from your PS4. It truly is as simple as that and then you are free to talk trash with your friends and hear all the audio straight from the headphones.
Anyone who has ever flown with an airline knows that they have specific standards and implement strict procedures. One of which has to do with Bluetooth technology and as always, it will depend on the specific airline. But, some have completely banned the use of Bluetooth devices. No, this is not to torture you for no reason at all. Actually, some airlines are concerned that Bluetooth devices could interfere with the radio frequencies used for communication between from control towers and the airplanes themselves.
This may sound familiar to you as many airlines will implement this guideline for smartphones, as well. The only thing you can do to ensure you know for sure is to research your flight’s allowance with Bluetooth devices. If it turns out that you can’t utilize the technology on an airplane, perhaps you could simply connect the headphones directly to your device (as most come with that option as well).
Bluetooth is an amazing technology that continues to make everyone’s life easier around the world. But, it is not foolproof and is far from it. In fact, it can be limited in some respects. Especially, when it comes to the range. When you are connected to your device, from time to time, you may notice some fuzziness with the audio. No, it does not indicate your device nor the headphones are malfunctioning or breaking down. Instead, it could be a simple issue that is caused by a few things.
If this happens, ensure that both connected devices are within 30 feet of one another. If the issue still persists, make sure that you are not next to another Bluetooth enabled device as it could be causing interference. Lastly, you may have to turn up the volume on both the headphones and the connected device.