The Best Noise Cancelling Headphones offer a superior auditory experience, immersing you in your music or podcast while effectively blocking out outside sounds and distractions. These high-tech marvels employ advanced noise-cancellation technology to diminish ambient sounds such as plane engines roaring to life or busy city streets or the buzz of coworkers in an office.
With their luxurious ear cushions and crystal-clear audio quality, these headphones ensure an enjoyable listening experience that’s distraction-free. No matter if you’re an avid traveler or music fanatic; investing in noise-canceling headphones will elevate your audio pleasure to new levels.
What is Noise Cancelling Headphones?
Noise-canceling headphones are audio accessories designed to reduce or block out ambient sounds in the environment, enabling you to experience audio content with greater clarity and less distractions. These headphones achieve noise cancellation with cutting-edge technology, typically including built-in microphones that pick up external sounds before emitting waves of the opposite phase to cancel out noises effectively.
Noise-canceling headphones work by actively producing anti-noise that mixes in with ambient sound waves to “cancel out” surrounding noise, effectively “cancelling it out.” This technology is particularly helpful in environments with constant background noise, such as airplanes, busy streets or offices with loud hums; allowing users to enjoy music, podcasts or phone calls with improved audio quality and reduced interference from outside sounds.
Here is List of Best Noise Cancelling Headphones
- Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless
- Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Wireless
- Focal Bathys Wireless
- Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700
- Sony WF-1000XM5
- Soundcore Space One
- Soundcore Space A40
- Sony WH-1000XM4
- JBL Tune 770NC
- 1More Sonoflow
Best Noise Cancelling Headphones
1. Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless
Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless headphones have proven themselves as the best budget-friendly ANC headphones we have tested. Although not as sturdy as the Anker Soundcore Space Q45 Wireless headphones and some users have reported cracking headband or hinges over time, these alternatives provide comparable noise isolation capabilities with their adjustable active noise cancellation (ANC) system.
Anker headphones can help reduce commuter noise like engine rumble and ambient chatter, however later product batches of this model do not support using its active noise cancellation (ANC) while wired. While this can be frustrating if using them for in-flight entertainment purposes, wireless use may present less of an issue than using them wired.
These comfortable over-ears boast over 44 hours of continuous battery life with their Active Noise Cancelling turned on, perfect for long days on the move. Furthermore, they support multi-device pairing, so that two devices can remain paired.
Furthermore, their exciting sound offers intense thump, punch, and warmth in your mixes while ensuring vocals and instruments remain bright – you can customize this using their companion app’s graphic EQ feature and presets to best meet your taste.
2. Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Wireless (Best Noise Cancelling Headphones)
If your budget is tight, consider the Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Wireless headphones. Anker has become one of the leaders in low-to-mid range over-ear headphones thanks to their exceptional ANC performance, and these headphones don’t disappoint in providing excellent overall noise isolation performance. While their predecessors excelled in managing engine noise from buses and planes more effectively than these do when cutting office chatter and AC fan noise; additionally they don’t feature preset ANC modes – handy if watching inflight entertainment!
These headphones boast a V-shaped sound profile with intense bass frequencies while vocals and lead instruments come through crisply and clearly. However, their extra boom and punch can muddy the rest of your mix; unlike Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless they do not provide sound customization features to tailor them specifically to your preferences. While they provide comfortable fitting over 32 hours continuously playback at an affordable price point – but their plasticky hinges feel hollow making this their weakest point in construction.
3. Focal Bathys Wireless
Focal headphones are well-known among audiophiles for their superior audiophile headphones that do not feature noise cancelling technology, yet offer high quality sound with casual wireless design. If audio quality is key to you, consider the Focal Bathys Wireless as they bridge this gap by offering both high quality sound and casual wireless design for optimal listening experiences.
While these premium cans don’t isolate noise quite as effectively as our top pick, they still deliver very impressive overall performances and also come equipped with wired DAC mode which delivers higher quality tunes than their default wireless mode mode while Bluetooth allows access via aptX Adaptive for streaming hi-res audio with low latency for better streaming of hi-res audio streaming!
These over-ear headphones feature a bass-rich sound profile that delivers satisfying punch, thump, and boom. Although vocals and instruments sound veiled initially, you can customize their sound according to your liking using their companion app’s graphic EQ and presets.
Their comfortable fit means you can wear them for long periods without significant fatigue; their active noise cancellation feature lasts over 29 hours continuously making these an excellent pick for audiophiles looking for an immersive listening experience while on the move.
4. Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 (Best Noise Cancelling Headphones)
Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700 are unquestionably the finest over-ear noise-cancelling headphones ever created by Bose, making an investment well worth making for frequent travelers who prioritize performance and comfort. While costly, these are worth every penny to experience the ultimate listening experience!
Bose headphones are known for their superior noise cancellation technology and adjustability; with these over-ear headphones from Bose you can find both features at once – superior noise cancellation plus maximum adjustability – unlike any other set we tested. You can adjust the active noise cancellation (ANC) levels from 0-10 for customized results that work for you.
This pair features a lightweight design that makes them comfortable to wear for hours, as well as easy-to-use touch controls and physical buttons that you can reach without looking. Furthermore, you can use wired mode with active noise cancellation for accessing in-flight entertainment systems; plus they fold flat for storage in their provided case.
The Bose 700 doesn’t come without its share of flaws: sound quality falls just shy of our favorite everyday audiophile headphones; app navigation can be confusing; battery life falls below 20 hours–though that should still cover an extended flight journey.
5. Sony WF-1000XM5
The Sony WF-1000XM5 earbuds are small but powerful. Boasting active noise cancellation and passive isolation technologies to effectively block out all sounds around you–not just low frequencies–this pair makes an impression right out of the box, with excellent sound quality straight out of the box that you can customize further via Sony’s app. Boasting eight hours of battery life (ANC enabled), they will last you through even long days of listening enjoyment!
If you want to hear what’s around you, simply place a finger against the left earbud to activate hear-through mode (sometimes referred to as awareness or transparency mode). Or an optional feature can automatically enable hear-through when speaking – useful for people whose hands may often be full!
For music playback, call answering, digital assistant activation and digital-assistant activation purposes alike, its large touch controls provide quick responses that don’t cause misfires and missed taps like other earbuds we tested.
The XM5 offers many helpful features, including voice activation via Alexa or Google, dual device compatibility, noise-cancelling microphones and the option to accept or reject calls with nod or shake of your head.
Sony offers four sizes of tips for their small earbuds, though keeping them securely in place may still prove challenging for people with small or very active ears. In addition, some users may find them uncomfortable due to the unique foam and silicone tips which may make their ears feel full – this sensation may make using true wireless earbuds awkward in certain circumstances where cable connections are necessary for inflight entertainment systems.
6. Soundcore Space One (Top Noise Cancelling Headphones)
If you’re on a budget of $100 or less and in search of wireless noise-cancelling headphones, we highly recommend the Soundcore Space One. In our tests, its active noise cancellation was nearly as effective as that of the Bose 700 and can be adjusted. Furthermore, its sound is enjoyable yet still customizable in the Soundcore app according to your taste; its chassis lightweight yet comfortable when worn and fully features controls for adjustment and customization.
Dual device connectivity is supported, while hear-through mode can be activated either manually by pressing a button or automatically when speaking. With its 40-hour battery life with Active Noise Cancelling activated (55 without) this pair may only need charging once every week or less!
The Space One comes equipped with a cable so that it can be used in wired mode on flights or when power runs low; however, note that its active noise cancellation (ANC) and microphone won’t function if your battery runs low; thankfully however, its quick-charge feature provides four hours of listening after just five minutes plugged in!
As this set comes equipped with three noise-reducing microphones, we discovered that voices may sound compressed or distant when calling with more expensive headphones.
7. Soundcore Space A40
Our top pick for wireless earbuds, the Soundcore Space A40 pair is also an excellent and budget-friendly noise cancelling earbud option. While its active noise cancellation may not be as widespread or effective as what can be found with Sony WF-1000XM5, it still performed very well during our tests.
Sound quality is enjoyable right out of the box, yet if it doesn’t match up to your ideal, there are various ways you can customize it using the Soundcore app. Small, lightweight earbuds should fit most ears comfortably while 10 hours of battery life per charge makes for impressive longevity – plus, there is even wireless charging support!
Six microphones ensure clear phone calls, and their dual device connectivity makes switching seamlessly between listening to music on your laptop and taking calls on your phone seamless.
Touch-based controls work reliably and can be customized in the app, though not every function (such as track reverse) can be disabled. Also, like all true wireless earbuds, they cannot be used with cables – therefore you will require a Bluetooth transmitter in order to access some inflight entertainment systems.
8. Sony WH-1000XM4 (Best Noise Cancelling Headphones)
Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones deliver outstanding noise cancellation and surprising sound quality in a lightweight and comfortable design. While they don’t differ significantly from their predecessor, the Sony WH-1000XM3 (which recently passed away), many additional features including multipoint pairing, DSEE Extreme upscaling, conversational awareness and auto-play/pause via built-in sensor help claim these as the current best noise-cancelling headphones – even though they have now been superseded by WH-1000XM5 listed below!
By all measures, Sony WH-1000XM4 wireless noise-cancelling headphones are outstanding wireless noise-cancelling headphones. Their exceptional noise cancellation and cutting-edge codec support enable them to exceed expectations in our tests with Janelle Monae’s Make Me Feel track, sounding even more dynamic due to powerful percussion bop and pre-chorus pre-chorus bass waves accompanied by massive wall of sound effects.
Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones support Sony’s 360 Reality Audio format that enables spatial audio on stereo headphones as well as LDAC codec, capable of sending bitrates up to 990kbps. Unfortunately, however, no longer support AptX or AptX HD, meaning your Hi-Res Audio support mileage may vary.
9. 1More Sonoflow
The 1More Sonoflow over-ear headphones prove that you can get great ANC for under $100/£100, which is why they’re our top pick if you’re on a budget but still want to experience immersive sound – and drown out the world while you’re at it. The 1More app is easy-to-use but sparse when it comes to features. But you can turn ANC on and off and there’s an EQ with presets. The 1More Sonoflow headphones boast a huge 70 hours with ANC off and a still amazing 50 hours with ANC on – a five minute charge can also deliver more than 4.5 hours of extra listening.
These aren’t the best noise-cancelling headphones you can buy, but for the price you’re getting a great experience and we think most people would be impressed by how well they perform. Sound isn’t high-end, but during our testing we were impressed with the powerful bass and detailed, crisp highs on offer here – thanks to the Sonoflow’s dual 40mm drivers. There’s support for Sony’s LDAC hi-res audio format. But you need a device that supports it as well as audio that offers a hi-res bit rate.
These headphones have a simple design, quality hinges and there’s a matte-like finish to the plastic casing. The cups themselves are adjustable and are made from a super soft memory foam, which were comfortable to wear and lightweight at only 250g. You’ll find buttons on the earcups. It’s a shame you can’t control them but if you like physical buttons over capacitive on-ear touch controls you’re in luck.
The 1More Sonoflow over-ear headphones are great value for money. We highly rated the battery life and comfort levels. They feel more high-end than they should, which is thanks to their matte finish, sturdy case and minimal design. You’ll find better ANC and sound but, crucially, not for this price.
10. JBL Tune 770NC (Best Noise Cancelling Headphones)
If you want effective noise-canceling but lack the funds to invest in our top pick or the more costly models on this list, then the JBL Tune 770NC over-ears might be just what you’re looking for.
JBL Tune 770NC headphones may look plain at first glance; however, what you get here are highly portable headphones with 70 hours of battery life and sound great right out of the box.
We highly praise the anti-noise cancellation technology on offer here, especially considering its price. When it came to audio quality testing, 40mm drivers produced some decent sound that created an expansive soundstage with slightly bassy beat.
Similarly, we found them very comfortable to wear due to their light weight of only 232g per pair of over-ears. All we could ask for in terms of aesthetics or precision with mids/trebles would be more stylish looks or perhaps some additional precision on mids/trebles; otherwise they are an outstanding budget option for trying ANC!
Why Choose Noise Cancelling Headphones?
There are numerous compelling arguments in favor of investing in noise-canceling headphones:
Noise Cancelling Headphones Improve Audio Quality: Noise-canceling headphones allow you to hear audio content more clearly by eliminating background noise. This results in an enhanced, immersive listening experience – be it music, podcasts or audiobooks.
Improved Concentration: Noise-cancelling headphones can help improve concentration in busy environments like open offices or coffee shops, without distracting you with conversations or other disturbances.
Travel Comfort: When travelling by plane, train, or bus, noise-canceling headphones can make your journey more comfortable by blocking out engine noise and other travel-related sounds – helping you arrive at your destination feeling refreshed and invigorated.
Improve Sleep: Noise-canceling headphones designed specifically for sleeping can help block out unwanted sounds to enhance the quality of restful slumber, whether in an urban setting or when sleeping with someone who snores.
Noise Cancelling Headphones Provide Hearing Protection in Loud Environments: Noise canceling headphones provide excellent hearing protection in noisy environments like construction sites or concerts by limiting exposure to potentially damaging levels.
Reduce Stress: Minimizing background noise can significantly decrease stress and facilitate relaxation, making noise-canceling headphones an excellent tool for relaxation and mindfulness practice.
Customizable Listening Experience: Noise-canceling headphones often allow you to customize their level of noise cancellation according to your own preference, giving you greater control over how much of the outside world you block out.
Better Call Quality: Noise-canceling headphones equipped with microphones often offer improved voice quality during phone calls by cutting down background noise, making conversations more intelligible for both parties involved.
Noise-canceling headphones are an indispensable asset that can transform your daily life, whether that means enjoying audio more deeply, improving concentration or simply getting some peace and quiet in an otherwise noisy world.
Best Noise Cancelling Headphones Conclusion
Noise-canceling headphones have revolutionized audio technology. Offering superior sound quality and calm in an otherwise chaotic and noisy world. Noise-canceling headphones enhance our listening experiences to new heights by actively suppressing unwanted background noise, whether we are traveling, working, relaxing or enjoying some time alone.
Noise-canceling headphones have quickly become indispensable companions of those seeking enhanced concentration, relaxation and immersive audio enjoyment. Selecting the best noise-canceling headphones not only elevates auditory world but also provides peace in an increasingly noisy universe.
Best Noise Cancelling Headphones FAQ
What are noise-canceling headphones, and how do they work?
Noise-canceling headphones are designed to reduce or eliminate unwanted background noise. They work by using built-in microphones to capture external sounds and then generate sound waves of the opposite phase to cancel out the noise, resulting in a quieter listening environment.
Are noise-canceling headphones different from regular headphones?
Yes, noise-canceling headphones are different from regular headphones because they actively reduce or eliminate external noise, while regular headphones simply play audio content without noise reduction features.
What types of noise do noise-canceling headphones work best for?
Noise-canceling headphones are most effective at reducing constant, low-frequency sounds like engine noise, air conditioning, or background chatter. They may be less effective at canceling sudden, high-frequency noises.
Can I use noise-canceling headphones without playing music or audio content?
Yes, you can use noise-canceling headphones in “noise-canceling only” mode without playing audio. This can be useful for reducing background noise and creating a quieter environment.
Do noise-canceling headphones require batteries or a power source?
Most noise-canceling headphones are powered by rechargeable batteries or standard batteries. They need power to operate the noise-canceling circuitry, so make sure they are adequately charged or have fresh batteries.
Are noise-canceling headphones safe for hearing protection?
Noise-canceling headphones can provide some degree of hearing protection by reducing exposure to loud or potentially damaging sounds. However, they are not a substitute for specialized hearing protection in extremely noisy environments.