Best true wireless earbuds

Best true wireless earbuds – PhoneArena


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True wireless earbuds are exploding in popularity over the past few years. The segment was given a major boost by Apple and its AirPods but since then all the major (and countless smaller) players in the personal audio industry have joined in.

As a result, the choice of great true wireless earbuds is so vast, picking the right pair for yourself can be a hassle. Luckily, we’re here to answer the question: What are the best true wireless earbuds? There’s more than one answer, however. 

To make things easier, we’ve narrowed it down to the 10 best true wireless earbuds. The selection has earbuds below $100 as well as some that cost as much as $300. Many of them offer premium features such as active noise canceling, but the quality of it can vary between the pairs. Whatever you’re looking for in terms of functions and design, you’ll likely find it below. So, let’s get to it!

Best true wireless earbuds, a summarized list:

  • Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2
  • Plantronics BackBeat Pro 5100
  • Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro
  • Audio-Technica ATH-CKS5TW
  • Apple AirPods
  • Jaybird Vista
  • Sennheiser CX 400BT
  • Jabra Elite Active 75t
  • Sony WF-1000XM3
  • Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro
  • Beats Powerbeats Pro
  • Apple AirPods Pro
  • Bose QuietComfort Earbuds
  • Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2

Note: Тhe earphones are ordered by price from lowest to highest according to initial MSRP.

Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2

Anker is known for making products that give you excellent bang for your buck and the Soundcore Liberty Air 2 are no exception. They have clear sound over all frequencies and the second generation has improved bass capabilities as well, something earbuds often lack. The pair will last you for 7 hours on its own, with 3 additional charges ready and waiting in the case for a total of 28 hours of playback time. With Bluetooth 5 you’ll get stable and fast connection. The only thing this pair is missing is the big brand name, but if you don’t care about it, you won’t go wrong by getting these. The Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 are the best true wireless earbuds under $50.

Plantronics BackBeat Pro 5100

Plantroncs’ contenders for best true wireless earbuds are the BackBeat Pro 5100. These earphones are smaller than most other pairs here and offer inconspicuous design if that’s what you’re looking for.  Battery life is decent despite the compact body, you get up to 6.5 hours of listening on a single charge and another 13 hours stored within the charging case. Cases with larger batteries give you a bit more freedom but 19 hours isn’t too bad either. A handy feature the Pro 5100s have is the auto play-pause function that triggers when you take them out of your ears. They also have an IP54 rating, which makes them sweat and water spray resistant, so rain and heavy workouts are no issue for these earbuds.

Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro

The Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro are Anker’s model for those that want more from their earbuds. Unlike the Air 2, these come with silicone tips for a snug fit and better noise isolation. But what’s best about them is the sound, which challenges with its quality earbuds from higher price brackets. Punching above their weight is something typical for Anker products, so we shouldn’t be that surprised at the Liberty 2 Pro’s achievement.

When it comes to battery life, the Liberty 2 Pro can last up to 8 hours on a single charge, with another 32 hours stored in the case. With a total of 40 hours, you can go for a week on as single charge of the case, even if you’re using them for a few hours a day. The case supports fast charging and uses USB Type-C, so you won’t have to wait much before you’re good to go again.

Audio-Technica ATH-CKS5TW

The Audio-Technica ATH-CKS5TW might not have the most roll-off-the-tongue name, but they deliver massively in some areas and are worth considering if those are aspects important to you. Firstly, they have an affinity towards the low end, in other words, they’re bass-heavy. If heavy beats is what you’re into and earbuds haven’t been delivering the sound you seek, these might be the buds for your ears. The design is a bit underwhelming for a pair coming from Audio-Technica but we wouldn’t call it bad either.

The second are these excel in is battery life. They can last up to 15 hours on a single charge with two full charges in the case for up to 45 hours of playback time. 15 hours from earbuds that aren’t even that big is next level.

Apple AirPods

Even though they’ve been out for quite a while now, the Apple AirPods remain one of the best all-around true wireless solutions for casual music listeners. Sure, they’re not perfect, but the combination between the $159 price point, exceptional audio quality, intuitiveness when it comes to their setup, and battery life, makes them something you should consider if you’re in the market for a truly wireless pair. 

The design may not be for everyone, especially for those looking for a workout buddy, but they’re no doubt unmistakable when worn. For casual music listening, they’re more that ideal for the occasion! They’ll last you 5 hours on a single charge and up to 24 hours without having to recharge the case. If you want to learn more about them, check our Apple AirPods review.

Samsung Galaxy Buds Live

The Galaxy Buds Live deserve to be on this list even if it’s only for their unique design. After all, most people wear their earbuds in public so it’s worth having something good-looking in your ears. Are bean-shaped earbuds the best choice for everyone? Probably not, but many will find them appealing. Luckily, the design isn’t all that the Buds Live have going for them. They also sound good and have active noise cancellation. It’s not the best in the business by far since these lack the soft tips that help separate the outside noise, but it’s still a noticeable improvement when you have ANC on.

In terms of battery life, you get up to 5.5 hours on a single charge and if you drain the charging case battery completely, you’ll manage about 19 hours of playback time with ANC off.

Jaybird Vista

They Jaybird Vista are the pair to choose if you want to go off the beaten path. Both literally and figuratively. They’re not as mainstream as most of the other brands and have a cool-looking design but beyond that, they’re not only IPX7 certified for waterproofness, but also meet the U.S. military MIL-STD 810G rugged compliant standards, which makes them perfect for outdoor adventures. Unfortunately, the Jaybird Vista have a battery life of just 6 hours and the case provides only 10 on top of that for a total of 16 hours. Not enough for a camping trip in the wilderness. Still, for everyday use they

Sennheiser CX 400BT

As we go higher up the price ladder, the requirements for the earbuds also become higher. But that’s not a problem for Sennheiser’s CX 400BT. The pair doesn’t compromise its sound in any way and is one of the best-sounding around. Battery life is more than decent as well, at 7 hours on a single charge. The case can add only about 13 hours on top of that, however, which is far from the best performers in this lineup. If you’re looking for active noise cancelling, you won’t find it on this pair. For that, scroll a bit more down the list and you’ll find the Sennheiser pair that can provide some additional comfort to your ears. Still, the CX 400BT are an excellent pair of earbuds that you won’t regret buying.

Jabra Elite Active 75t

Jabra has quickly became a brand that is toe-to-toe with the big names in the audio business. Its over-the-ear headphones had us impressed and so did the Elite Active 75t earbuds. They offer high-quality sound, a comfortable fit and 7.5 hours of music playback on a single charge and up to 28 hours when using the charging case to top them up. 

As with its other pairs, Jabra has made an extra effort to optimize these buds for talking on the phone. The combination of mics and software wizardry makes the Jabra Elite Active 75t some of the best true wireless earbuds for phone calls. For a more thorough look into them, read our Jabra Elite Active 75t review.

Sony WF-1000XM3

We’re entering the high-end of the true wireless earbuds spectrum and it shows. In this segment where all earbuds offer comparable sound in terms of quality, it becomes more a question of taste which one are the best. Still, many consider the Sony WF-1000XM3 to be the best true wireless earbuds right now (despite their terrible name). A big part of it is the amazing active noise canceling they provide. That does come at a cost, however. Despite the bulky body, the 1000XM3s offer only about 5 hours of playback time on one charge, with another 19 hours or so in the case.

Another drawback is the lack of water-resistance rating, which means you should probably avoid using them on rainy days or while working out. That’s a bummer considering the high price but if those things aren’t part of your everyday life, you’d be more than happy with the Sony WF-1000XM3s in your ears.

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro

Samsung’s Galaxy Buds Pro are the Korean giant’s newest truly wireless earbuds, with the “most intelligent” active noise cancelling and highest IP rating – IPX7. They can also last up to 28 hours on a single battery charge. The Buds Pro case is Qi-certified for wireless charging, although it can also charge via USB Type-C. Aside from looking and feeling premium, the Buds Pro sound really good, with strong and clean bass, distinct mids and highs. In our review of the Galaxy Buds Pro we also covered the many cool features you can take advantage of, particularly if using the Buds Pro with a Galaxy phone or tablet, as well as their customization options, which are plenty enough.

Beats Powerbeats Pro

We can’t talk about headphones without including a pair of Beats by Dre at some point. The Powerbeats Pro are the only pair that hooks over your ear for extra safety during use. And you’d need that because these earbuds are all about your workout entertainment. They can run for 9 hours on a single charge, which is good because the charging case is big compared to most others. With it, you can have these on for a total of 24 hours.

Beats being an Apple brand comes with some benefits. Mostly if you’re an iPhone user, that is. The Apple H1 chip ensures fast pairing and better connectivity overall, and the charging case comes with a Lightning port, which means one fewer cables to carry around. But even if you’re an Android user, the Powerbeats Pro are the best true wireless earbuds for working out.

AirPods Pro

If you’re in the Apple ecosystem but working out isn’t your priority, then the AirPods Pro are an easy choice. Unlike the regular AirPods, the Pros come with active noise canceling that’s rivalling that of the Sony pair in quality. The drivers of the AirPods Pro deliver exceptional highs and mids, but aren’t the bassiest earbuds out there. The battery life is also on the lower end, lasting 4.5 hours on a single charge and up to 24 hours when using everything the charging case can offer.

Тhe Apple H1 chip is also on board and to top it all, the case comes with wireless charging. For iPhone users, the AirPods Pro are best noise canceling true wireless earbuds. Check our AirPods Pro review for an in-depth analysis.

Bose QuietComfort Earbuds

It won’t be a list of the best earphones around without a pair from Bose. The QuietComfort Earbuds sit on the high-end of the earbuds spectrum and with good reason. They offer exquisite sound that’s enhanced by the active noise cancelling, which contributes massively towards the “QuietComfort” part of your listening experience. The earbuds come with touch controls for seamless navigation and are IPX4 rated, which means sweating and rain are not an issue while you’re wearing them.

The design isn’t exactly compact and despite that they deliver only about 6 hours of playback time on a single charge with 12 hours more in the case. On the bright side, the case is Qi compatible, so you can charge it on your phone’s wireless charger.

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2

If you want to stand out from the crowd with something a bit more special, then the new Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 are here to help. Or almost here, depending on when you’re reading this. The pair goes on sale on April 3. Naturally, we can’t comment on the sound quality yet, but given the praise the original Momentums got, this second generation should only be better. 

The Momentum 2s are objectively better in terms of battery life, however, now sporting 7 hours of playback time with a single charge and up to 28 hours when using the case to recharge. And that’s with active noise canceling on, which of course this pair has. For some, these might be prohibitively expensive, but if you’re looking for the best true wireless earbuds and price isn’t a big factor, the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 will be a delight for your ears. 

 



Radoslav Minkov, Georgi Zarkov

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