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The right earphones can make all of your music sound its absolute best and with the advancements in technology, they can do so much more. But choosing the best headphones for your needs can be a bit challenging with all the options out there, in all different price ranges.
So we’ve taken a closer look at what you should look for when searching out the best earphones in 2019 and also provide you with what our top choices are, so you can have a better idea when you go shopping.
We look at the best in-ear earphones and the best wireless earphones for designers in 2019, including the best earbuds for iPhone, and in all budget ranges.
If you’re ready, let’s get started.
When you first head online or to the store, it can be a little bit overwhelming seeing the different options out there for the first time. To give you a primer of sorts, we thought it would be a good idea to highlight each of the different types out there to make them easier to spot as well and easier to choose.
Also known as earbuds, are typically found in two different variations, ones that sit on the ear while the earphones rest comfortably in the ear, and those that are pushed into the ear. Regardless of the design you choose, both can have issues. The first can become painful especially if they don’t fit right in your ear cavity or if it puts too much pressure on your ear itself.
The second kind can get to be uncomfortable if the earbud doesn’t fit right and can fall out if it’s too big or small. Many people tend to prefer the second kind because of its noise-cancelling design but noise cancelling earbuds can be dangerous if you tend to wear them while you are commuting. You want to make sure that while you can hear what you are listening to in high-quality audio, you can still hear some sound outside in order to stay safe.
Commonly called headphones because of the headband, on-ear earphones are available in two different options, either pressed against your ear or over-ear headphones that enclose the ear. While the ones pressed against your head are typically more lightweight the over-ear variety, they are relatively cheaper as well. Over-ear headphones can be either light or heavy-weighted so you may want to try them on if you can prior to buying them to determine if the weight is right for you so it doesn’t cause any neck strain while you’re using them.
Many different styles of earphones are available with the option to be used wirelessly but this option does tend to add more in terms of the price you will pay. For some, owning wireless headphones is the best option available, especially if you are using them with a portable device or tend to listen to music or other programs while exercising. While the convenience of not having wires is positive, some wireless headphones will end up providing lesser sound quality than what you may be looking for.
With the different types of earphones available, once you decide on which style you think will work best for your day in and day out, you want to make sure that they also meet certain criteria so they will fit, perform well and last for years to come. With that in mind, we wanted to share out checklist when it comes to choosing the best earphones.
The right amount of comfort is important in anything you wear on your body. From jeans to earphones, something worn sparingly won’t generally become uncomfortable. However, over time, without the proper fit, can become really uncomfortable. To get an idea of whether or not the earphones you’re buying are not only a good fit, but comfortable, if you have the chance, try the earphones on for about 20 minutes to determine if they are a good fit or not.
For headphones, weight can be a significant factor in regards to overall comfort. Although the overall weight of the headphones may not be that much, when they are on your head, that weight can affect how comfortable they are. The headband can also influence the level of comfort with padding and adjustable to ensure a proper fit.
With earphones, portability isn’t usually an issue. The physical design of both earphones and headphones, especially those that are wireless are designed for portability. Whether you’re at the gym or hanging around the house, many earphones are made for anybody’s active lifestyle. Make sure that the ones you choose not only satisfy your audio needs but your lifestyle needs as well.
If, in addition to the work that you do, live a pretty active lifestyle, the durability of your earphones could be something to consider before making a decision. While many earphones and headphones will come with carrying cases to protect them when they aren’t being used. If they are high-end earphones, check to see if you can purchase replacement parts. It can be a lot less money to replace parts of your earphones instead of buying a new set.
Whether you should choose wired or wireless earphones is strictly a personal choice. The can be benefits and negatives for either choice. Wired earphones can offer better sound quality than some brands of wireless earphones but the cord can become tangled easily. While you won’t run into that problem with wireless, the cost of many wireless headphones can be a negative to some.
While for many people, spending hundreds of dollars on top of the line earphones can be a feasible option, but for others, it may not be so easy. Choosing a pair of earphones that fit your budget can sometimes help you find a better quality cheaper option that you would have gotten spending hundreds of dollars on a more expensive pair of earphones.
So far, we’ve given you a lot of information to consider when it comes to choosing the best earphones and we understand that with all that information, it can be a bit much. We wanted to share what our choices are so that maybe they can give you an idea of the different options out there.
Here is a summary of the best earbuds, perfect for designers, freelancers, creatives and music lovers in general.
For those who prefer the convenience that can come with wireless earphones. Even the best earphones can have connectivity issues, causing people to get frustrated easily and either struggle through the frustration or spend more money on another new pair. With the SoundSport Free from Bose, the innovative design and high-quality tech provide an amazingly reliable connection. With a minimalistic, in-ear design, the SoundSport Free earphones are built for everyday use from hanging around the house to a high-intensity workout. While the SoundSport earphones offer you a great level of sound quality, the minimal design can provide a loose fit when in your ears causing you to adjust them frequently.
For some, this is a minor complaint and won’t keep them from purchasing the earphones, even though some other wireless earphones may offer better quality at a much cheaper price. These days, privacy and noise reduction while wearing earphones is a major feature that many consumers look for and those who consider the SoundSport Free should consider other options. The design of the earphones allows outside noise in keeping you from enjoying the tremendous sound quality that only a manufacturer such as Bose can provide. If you can look past their shortcomings, the Bose SoundSport Free could be the perfect earphones for you. You could also consider their wired, noise-cancelling version: Bose QuietComfort 20 Headphones ($299).
Freedom perfected in a truly wireless design, with industry leading noise canceling powered by Sony’s proprietary HD Noise Canceling Processor QN1e. Form meets function with up to 24 total hours of battery life with quick charging, touchpad controls, premium sound quality, and smart features like Wearing Detection and Quick Attention Mode. The only downfall, is its price.
Apple is a brand name that throughout the years, with their high-quality products and overall company impression has turned many consumers into diehards for any product they offer. With their AirPods, it’s easy to understand why. While Apple is notorious for making products that only work with those that are produced by Apple, the AirPods break that trend with limited functionality with Android-based products.
Providing a strong Bluetooth connection in combination with the excellent battery life, which is up to five hours on a single charge, Apple has put their spin on wireless earphones that are better than expected but aren’t without issues. The design can keep them from fitting correctly in someone’s ears plus, despite the high-end price, the sound quality can be less than what some audiophiles may be looking for.
A major misconception when it comes to earphones is that in order to get excellent sound quality, you have to spend a boatload of money. This isn’t the case when it comes to the Triple Driver In-Ear Headphones by 1More as their relatively affordable price can provide you with lush sound quality. The sleek and modern design is enhanced by the aluminium construction and rose gold color which is created by the combination of the color of gold mixed with copper. Angled design helps them fit into your ear nicely.
While the value of the Triple Driver Headphones is unmatched, like many other wired earphones, they do have some issues. As with many wired earphones, the rubber cable can get caught on itself and the plastic remote attached to the cord to control playback and volume can feel a bit cheap but for such high sound quality at an affordable price, it’s hard to not look past these minimal issues.
While it’s becoming increasingly apparent that the future of earphones is a wireless one, however, that can present problems along with the convenience, such as battery life, wireless reliability, and the issue of not losing them which can be pretty easy. The design of the MA390 Wireless earphones, known as neck buds, can be a better alternative to wireless earphones, can provide a longer battery life and in the case of these earphones, a better quality and balanced sound that while they have a neutral tonality, the level of bass that the earphones put out leaves something to be desired.
The wireless connection of the earphones is excellent and doesn’t experience the dropouts that can be common among other wireless earphones. We never ran into an issue moving around the house and having the music cut out on us. The battery life gives you about seven hours of listening time which is much better than some other options on the market. While the overall design can take some getting used to and is definitely not for everyone, you can’t go wrong with the MA390 Wireless earphones from RHA.
With many earphones, finding ones that fit right can be a struggle. However, with the NuForce BE Sport4 earphones from Optoma with customized ear tips and are good to use in just about every situation. Made with a glossy black metal design, and lime green accent, the Sport4 earphones give off a look more commonly found on high-end earphones. The included fittings allow for a high degree of personalization, giving you the ability to tailor how the earphones fit in your ears.
At an incredibly lightweight 15 grams, they are light enough to feel like they aren’t there at all but at the same time, they are substantial enough in order to feel sturdy. A unique feature of the BE Sport4 is the magnetic ends on each earbud helping reduce the chances that you might lose them. A soft carry pouch helps keep them safe and secure when not in use and charges easily using a mini USB cable makes charging super easy.
Getting the best sound quality from your earphones shouldn’t cost you more than your monthly utility bill. That’s why the NuForce BE Free5 from Optoma receives so much praise for not only their design but their affordable cost. A wireless earbud, the BE Free5 earbuds are one of the least expensive ways to get a truly wireless experience. While reminiscent of other offerings from Optoma, the Free5’s matte finish and textured plastic give them a more grown-up feel. The inclusion of an LED in each earbud to let you know whether they’re connected, pairing, or low on power is a nice feature
The fit of the Free5 is very good in comparison to other in-ear earphones on the market. Once they are in, they can be very comfortable in your ear, without having to adjust them constantly as with some other earphones. The sound quality is among the top options at its price point, beating many of its competitors and can be very efficient at drowning out ambient noise when listening to music. The areas where the Free5 falters, however, is in the connection strength. Unfortunately, the signal can be dropped from time to time and can be very frustrating. However, with the sound quality and the undeniable value for a premium earphone that is truly wireless, the NuForce BE Free5 from Optoma is worth a look.
In the world of truly wireless earphones, the list typically starts with the AirPods from Apple and the next option on that list is the Elite 65t True Wireless earphones from Jabra. If it’s not, then it definitely should be. While Jabra probably won’t win any awards for the design of the 65t earphones, the overall appearance has a subtle and mature look and have the feeling of a premium product even though they are mainly made from plastic. On the earbuds, perforations allow various microphones to pick up your voice while making calls but also to mix in outside sounds, which can be adjusted using Jabra’s app, available for both iOS and Android. The carrying case can be a bit cumbersome, itself also made from plastic while you make sure that the earbuds are positioned correctly to ensure the case closes the right way to keep them from falling out.
When removed from their carrying case, the Elite 65t earphones turn on automatically, which is a nice feature that not many other wireless earphones have; and also turn off when putting back in the case. The performance of the wireless connection is right up there with some of the best options on the market and rarely has issues. The sound quality is excellent as well, giving you a crisp listening experience no matter the song or podcast episode. The battery life is 5 hours according to the manufacturer’s information. However, unless you’re blasting music at its highest level all the time, you should be able to get more than that. While the price point might keep some from trying the Elite 65t True Wireless earphones from Jabra, if you are able to, we cannot recommend them enough. You will be very satisfied.
If you visit your local shopping center and head to the electronics section, you can easily find rows and rows of cheaply priced or even cheaply made earphones that many of us settle for because we either don’t know any better or can’t afford a better option. The Momentum In-Ear earphones from Sennheiser offer a high-quality option with excellent sound quality for much less than you might think. Designed with a sporty look combining black and red earphones with a red cord will make it look right at home whether being used at work or during a workout at the gym. Wire tangling is an ever common issue with wired earphones, but the flat wires of the Momentum are designed to keep them less likely to get tangled.
If you’re used to using cheap sets of earphones to listen to music, then the sound quality that the Momentum offers is going to sound incredible. This isn’t to say that they cannot provide quality sound, booming bass and enjoyable experience which they most certainly do, even though the mids don’t provide much enjoyment, it is still a huge step up from the cheaper option. If you’re looking for an upgrade that while affordable, keeps you out of the bargain bin, you can’t go wrong with the Momentum In-Ear earphones from Sennheiser.
The TREBLAB X5 headphones are an all round headphone with a budget concious price tag. They come with truly incredible HD sound, full noise cancellation and siri. These headphones are completely water resistant and sweat proof and you can enjoy your music for a playtime of up to 6 hours with + 4 additional charges with charging case.
Here is a summary of the best earbuds, perfect for anyone that loves music in general.
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