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The Best Headphones

Last updated on October 18, 2022

We looked at the top 25 Headphones and dug through the reviews from 141 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Headphones.

Best Bluetooth Headphones

Our Review Process

Don't Waste Your Money is focused on helping you make the best purchasing decision. Our team of experts spends hundreds of hours analyzing, testing, and researching products so you don't have to. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in a category.

Our Picks For The Top Headphones

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Product Overview
Key Takeaway
 Top Pick

JBL Bluetooth Streaming Long-Lasting Headphones

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Bluetooth Streaming Long-Lasting Headphones

Thanks to their Bluetooth compatibility, you'll be able to use these attractive headphones hands-free. They play for up to 40 hours per charge and can quickly switch between two devices when needed. You can even get these headphones in blue, black, white or rose.

Overall Take

Space SaverThe earcups on these headphones are foldable to take up less space on your desk.

 Runner Up

Anker Soundcore Life 4-Microphones Headphones

Anker Soundcore

Life 4-Microphones Headphones

Thanks to the high-resolution audio in these wireless headphones, music is delivered with exceptional clarity. The built-in noise cancellation technology is also able to eliminate up to 90% of ambient noises. Of course, the soft memory foam around the ear cups makes the headphones comfortable to use. You can order the headphones in silver, black or...

Overall Take

Effective PickYou'll enjoy 40 hours of continuous playtime when you go with these premium wireless headphones.

 We Also Like

Sony MDRZX110 ZX Series Stereo Cushioned Earpads Headphones


ZX Series Stereo Cushioned Earpads Headphones

If you're searching for a set of headphones that's more basic, this set is your best bet. Even though it doesn't come with all the bells and whistles, these are extremely comfortable and lightweight. The headphones are portable and have tangle-free cords.

Overall Take

Lightweight and ComfortableSince this headphone set is lightweight, it's great for long bus rides and road trips.

" These headphones stand out for their portability. Store them away in your bag by folding them down. Sleek-looking and lightweight. Durable cord is solid and resists tangling."
"Not wireless like expensive competitors."
 Strong Contender

Bose QuietComfort 35 Over-Ear Alexa-Enabled Headphones


QuietComfort 35 Over-Ear Alexa-Enabled Headphones

These over-ear headphones boast first-rate noise cancellation and excellent sound quality in a lightweight, comfortable design. Built-in compatibility with Amazon’s Alexa and Google Assistant and a skip-free Bluetooth connection make this pair well worth the money. During our testing, we were blown away by these headphones, which were comfortable...

Overall Take

First-Rate ChoiceThese headphones are a top pick because of their lightweight design and excellent sound quality.

" If noise cancelling is what matters most to you, the Bose QuietComfort 35 Series II is the wireless headphone pair to get—its noise cancelling ranks among the best available. On top of that, it sounds good, it’s exceptionally comfortable, and..."
"Audio quality isn't the best. Style leaves something to be desired. Audio leakage due to loose fit on some."

Buying Guide

Headphones are huge right now. Music fans, gaming buffs and podcast aficionados spent more than $9.5 billion dollars on them in 2016, and that number is projected to balloon to $13.8 billion in the next seven years.

There are multiple styles of headphones. Earbuds, on-ear and over-ear headphones are the three most popular types, and they’re all available in wired and wireless versions. If you’re intimidated by the number of options you’re seeing online or in the electronics aisle, there are a number of ways to narrow down the choices and find the best headphones for your needs.

“The most important factor to consider when shopping for headphones is the environment it’s going to be used in,” says music and video producer Calvin West.

Will you use the headphones at the gym, at home or on the train? If you’ll be outdoors a lot, or wearing the headphones on the bus while you commute to work, consider headphones with noise-canceling properties, West suggests.

Earbuds, or in-ear headphones, sit just inside your ear canal. Soft silicone tips fit snugly inside your ears, and some models come with different sizes for a customized fit. Other models have secure-fit tips that create a stronger seal in your ear canal so they stay put.

Earbuds are available in standard wired versions, wireless versions (which connect around the back of your neck with a small wire but do not need to connect to your device with a wire), and true wireless versions where both earbuds operate independently with no wires at all.

On-ear headphones, which are sometimes called supra-aural headphones, are larger, with soft ear cups made from real or synthetic leather. They sit on top of your ears and allow more sound in while you’re listening, which makes them great for times when you want to listen to music without completely canceling out surrounding sounds. They’re also more lightweight and portable than heftier, full-coverage over-ear headphones.

Over-ear headphones enclose your entire ear in soft ear cups. They’re the largest headphone option, and they boast advanced features like noise cancellation and higher sound quality than other types of headphones. They’re great for wearing indoors while you’re focused on work, playing video games or enjoying high-definition sound on your smart TV. They tend to be a bit bulky to take with you when you’re commuting or traveling, but the total noise cancellation option makes them great for long flights.

Some over-ear headphone models have active noise cancellation as well as ambient sound modes for different listening scenarios. Other types of over-ear headphones come with a transmitter that connects to your home audio or entertainment system for a more robust digital listening experience.

Our Expert Consultant

Calvin West   
Music and video producer

Calvin West, a music and video producer, recorded his first album at 19 and has been in the music business since. Currently based in Spain, where he has worked with artists and labels around the world providing services in music mixing, mastering and lyric video production.

Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the headphones available to purchase.

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

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Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: Chef Audio, BestReviews, What HiFi, Medium, Business Insider.


User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

Our experts reviewed the top 25 Headphones and also dug through the reviews from 141 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Headphones.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

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Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Bang For Your Buck

Sony MDRZX110 ZX Series Stereo Cushioned Earpads Headphones

Key Takeawy

If you're searching for a set of headphones that's more basic, this set is your best bet. Even though it doesn't come with all the bells and whistles, these are extremely comfortable and lightweight. The headphones are portable and have tangle-free cords.

What other experts liked

These headphones stand out for their portability. Store them away in your bag by folding them down. Sleek-looking and lightweight. Durable cord is solid and resists tangling.
- BestReviews
Overall if you are looking for affordable headphones that have great sounding quality and looks absolutely fantastic to wear, than Sony MDRZX110 ZX Series Stereo Headphones is the right product for you.
- Chef Audio
Fully foldable. Very nice, rugged cables.
- The Phonograph
The over-ear headphones are equipped with comfortable ear cushions and an adjustable headband.
- Music Critic
It offers an immersive, full sound that excels in its handling of bass.
- NDTV Gadgets 360
At less than five ounces, they are lightweight, and the three and a half meter Y-cord offers a tangle-free connection.
- Old Time Music
The 4.23 ounce Sony MDRZX110 ZX cans are built with a 30mm multi-layer film diaphragm and 1.38 neodymium dynamic drivers that give listeners pronounced sound clarity with booming bass and crisp treble.
- Lifewire
The elegant folding design, good sound deliverance, and easily replaceable price will have parents and kids loving it.
- Apple Wireless Air Pods

What other experts didn't like

Users report the headphone jack can break after heavy use.
- BestReviews
Not wireless like expensive competitors.
- Chef Audio
Dark and muddy sound. Recessed higher mids.
- The Phonograph
The plastic is flimsy and bendy, and does not look or feel like it can take too much abuse, so careful handling is advised.
- NDTV Gadgets 360
Some are going to want better facilities.
- Old Time Music
Can be uncomfortable when used for longer listening sessions. Relatively poor sound insulation.
- Apple Wireless Air Pods

What to Look For

  • If you’re picking out new headphones, the first order of business is choosing between wired and wireless. Wired headphones are generally more reliable, since they don’t rely on a Bluetooth connection to connect you to your music, but wireless technology is quickly catching up. You can get more bang for your buck in terms of sound quality with wired headphones, too, and you’ll never have to worry about your wired headphones running out of battery. However, the freedom of wireless headphones outweighs their downsides for many people, and high-end styles have up to 20 hours of battery life per charge.
  • Next up: What activities will you be doing while you wear your headphones? Gym-goers will benefit from earbud styles. Their cone-shaped silicone tips fit securely in your ears, staying in place during active sweat sessions. Plus, the in-line mic and volume control help you answer calls or switch songs without fumbling with your phone. If you’re relying on headphones to help you focus while working from home or enjoying your favorite music, a pair of plush over-ear headphones can provide premium sound and comfort with active noise cancellation.
  • How portable do you need your headphones to be? Earbuds are lightweight and fit into a purse, pocket or briefcase, but wireless and true wireless versions are easier to lose. If you’re not planning on taking your headphones far from home, on-ear or over-ear options make more sense; you can enjoy their superior sound quality without worrying about hefting them around.
  • If you’re going to drop your hard-earned cash on headphones, you’ll want to take steps to care for them to keep the music playing. Wired headphones need cable care; you’ll want to wind up the cable and secure it with a twist tie or velcro rope while not in use. Make sure you don’t leave your headphones in areas where it becomes extremely hot or cold (like inside your car during chilly winter nights or hot summer days). Those temperatures can damage the internal audio components.
  • Keeping your headphones clean also contributes to their life span. Earbud-style headphones need special attention since wax buildup can affect sound quality and hygiene. Removing the silicone ear tips, rinsing them with warm water, and drying them with a soft cloth should be part of their regular maintenance. All types of headphones should be wiped with a damp, clean cloth and dried if they’re exposed to excessive sweat or moisture. Make sure to keep your charging port clear of crumbs and debris for reliable charging, and store on-ear and over-ear headphones in a hard case when they’re not in use.

Headphones Rankings

More to Explore

You owe your favorite pair of headphones a salute. The first pair of modern audio headphones were picked up by the U.S. Navy in 1910 after being repeatedly rejected by private sector investors. Mormon inventor and engineer Nathaniel Baldwin invented them on his kitchen table; the Navy’s eventual investment made him a rich man. They ordered 100 pairs and sparked a headphone revolution. Unfortunately, Baldwin never patented them, so the German company Beyerdynamic made some serious cash when they created the first pair for home enjoyment in 1937. Baldwin also wound up bankrupt after using his payout from the Navy to make a less-than-sound investment in the Mormon polygamous movement. Whoops!

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