The price range in this article - $39 - $350
After spending over 15 years working in the music industry as a musician and being an avid music fan, you certainly pick up more than enough knowledge to help you choose the best headphones or in-earphones for a variety of different situations when it comes to music, recording, or even streaming live podcasts. A lot of high-quality brands used to be out of reach for the average consumer, such as me and you, however, tech is cheap and the competition is so fierce, companies are forced to ensure their headphones are high quality, and affordable. But don’t be fooled, there are still products you should avoid and certain brands of headphones you can always trust!
Over the years my ears have been exposed to almost every type of audio delivery system out there, from wireless to Bluetooth, over the ear to in-earphones and even custom made plugs made for audio monitoring, so when it comes to comfort and practicality, I know exactly what works and what doesn’t. Below, I’m going to outline a selection of headphones, including plugged, wireless and Bluetooth, over-ear phones, in-earphones, and also tell you what these headphones are best suited for. You might be looking for headphones to take to the gym, listen to audiobooks, plug into your iPhone, hook up to your home audio system, drown out colleagues at work, or even just some useful allrounders you can use in any situation. I’ll include a wide budget range for each use so you have wide financial flexibility whilst still getting great quality for your money.
First, I’m going to list a few of the best brands I’ve used over the years. These are the brands that I go back to time and time again due to their consistent high quality, durability, and affordability. I’ve lost count of the number of headphones I’ve bought over the years, mostly because I lose them on tour, but mainly, I just love buying headphones and having a wide range to choose from. I'm a music nerd and studied Music Technology at University, hence why I'm addicted to music tech!
Brands I will always trustBose, Sennheiser, Philips.
The last set of headphones I bought and why
Bose QuietComfort 35 II Wireless Bluetooth Headphones
I bought these headphones to essentially listen to music when I’m at home. I spend a lot of time working on my laptop, writing articles like this, and one of my main jobs is to listen to music, sometimes for up to 6 hours a day so I need headphones that are comfortable, long-lasting in terms of battery life, and enable me to walk around the apartment and make a coffee, well, several coffees. If you like the sound of these I’ll drop a few cheaper Bose headphones that will give you the same benefits.
The headphones are wireless and noise-canceling which is essential for me with almost every set of cans I but. I want to be able to fully concentrate on the audio in my ears so these fit that need. Bose headphones are also super comfortable, even after wearing a pair for hours at a time. This is one reason I avoid the Marshall headphones, they’re too small for my ears and end up hurting after about an hour. To be honest, the main reason I decided to try this product from Bose was that it literally spelled out my needs in the product name. Quiet, Comfort, Wireless, Bluetooth, Headphones. The marketing team really smashed it with the name. It’s not catchy, but it gets your attention.
I have another set of Bose, a much cheaper set as well. A set I take mainly to the gym. Bose SoundSport in-earphones cost me 100 bucks and came with a nice little carry case. They work with Android, Samsung and Apple devices and also have up to six-hour battery life, however, I’ve never used them for that long in one go to find out if that’s true. The longest I’ve used these for was a 3-hour flight, and they lasted the train journey home as well from the airport which was another 50 minutes. They fit in my pocket, the sound is immense so they're versatile to me. These are in-earphones so much better for the gym and outdoors.
If you like the sound of the Bose QuietComfort and Bose SoundSport but not the price tag then here are two other sets of headphones I use with a much lower price tag
If you’re looking for a cheaper option to the Bose QuietComfort 35 II Wireless Bluetooth Headphones I mentioned at the start, you could go with the Sennheiser HD 300 PROtect I discuss above, however, these are about $250 so they wouldn’t save you much money. If you want an insane sound and can afford them though, buy them! I’d recommend either the Sennheiser HD280PRO at $100, or Bose QuietComfort 25 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones which come in at about $160. I also own both of these, however, I paid more for the Bose QuietComfort 25 but they’ve been on offer on Amazon for a while so most likely still will be now. If they’re not, go with the Sennheiser HD280PRO.
Check prices on Amazon
$39 Philips UpBeat Wireless earphones
$40 Sennheiser CX 100
$99 Sennheiser HD280PRO Headphone
$100 Bose SoundSport in-ear headphones
$160 Bose QuietComfort 25 Acoustic
$229 Sennheiser HD 300 PROtect
$349 Bose QuietComfort 35 II
I started my career as a music journalist in 2013 and have been involved in the music industry as a touring musician, studio engineer and artist consultant since 2002, as well as previously being a signed artist. My passion for delivering high quality, informative music-related news is a daily driving force behind the content I create. Also a huge gaming nerd! Born in the United Kingdom and currently living in Sweden. Skål!CONTACT ME HERE
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