Best Beats Headphones – You Should Buy
Full-fledged over-ear or over-ear headphones aren’t for everyone, though they tend to deliver the best sound quality. Not everyone wants to walk around with bulky headphones with big, soft earpads. In-ear models with smaller earcups are more compact, travel-friendly, and tend to cost less. These headphones have evolved to offer more models with active noise cancellation, noise isolation, headphone amplifiers, and other advanced features previously only found on larger circumaural models.
Here are our current top picks for the best in-ear headphones based on these key factors: B. How well they cancel noise and how good they sound. Except for the Grado Prestige series SR80e and Beats EP wired headphones, they are all wireless headphone models. There isn’t a single earbud on this list. So if that’s what you’re looking for, check out our list of wireless earbuds that let the music go straight to your ears.
1. Beats Studio Buds
The Studio Buds are unlike any Beats earphones before them: Gone are the over-ear clips, flashy branding, and fancy colors. Instead, they’re understated — even understated — with a true wireless design and one-touch wireless pairing for not only iOS devices, but Android devices as well.
They’re the smallest and most refined of all Beats headphones, with impressive durability. Battery life lasts up to 15 hours with noise cancellation on and up to 24 hours with noise cancellation off, and when you need to head out the door, the Fast Fuel can play for up to an hour on a five-minute charge.
Apple Music users can enjoy the spatial audio of tracks available in Dolby Atmos without having to turn it on in their phone’s settings (as they do with other headphones). You can also wake up Siri, Apple’s personal assistant, by speaking. Active Noise Cancellation adjusts 48,000 times per second to eliminate background noise, though it doesn’t have adjustable levels, just on or off.
Sonically, the Beats Studio Buds have a more refined sound than the usual bass-heavy Beats, making them stand out from the rest of the pack. It’s a refreshing change of direction for an Apple subsidiary.
2. Jabra Elite 45 hours
Released in mid-2020, the Jabra Elite 45h are basically billed as the best in-ear headphones for the money. While there’s nothing particularly fancy about it, it’s one of the best values for on-ear headphones out there, with good sound quality, a solid design, and a comfortable fit (at least for on-ear headphones). Plus, these bluetooth on-ear headphones are great as a headset for calls and feature a sidetone feature that lets you hear yourself in the headset without talking too loudly. Battery life is also good. It’s available in a variety of colors for $100, but is often discounted to $80 or less.
3. Beats Fit Pro True Wireless
The best Beats earbuds we’ve tested are the Beats Fit Pro True Wireless. These earbuds are the sporty siblings of the Beats Studio Buds True Wireless, but even if you don’t want sport earbuds, they offer a few extra features you might like. They have an H1 chip, so you can easily pair them with iPhones and MacBooks, and feature Apple’s Spatial Audio virtual surround sound (though it’s only available on iOS devices). They have excellent ANC capabilities that can help reduce all kinds of noise, including the faint roar of buses and airplane engines.
As delivered, they have a slightly V-shaped sound profile, so the sound has more rumble and punch. The vocals and lead instruments are present and bright, but can sound a bit harsh. Unfortunately, they don’t have sound customization features, but overall, their sound is well-balanced enough for a variety of genres. They’re reasonably comfortable, but the buds have a chunky design that might bother those with smaller ears.
4. Beyond Powerbeats Pro True Wireless
If you’re looking for earbuds to use while working out, the Beats Powerbeats Pro Truly Wireless are the best option we’ve reviewed from Beats. Instead of stabilizing fins like the Beats Fit Pro True Wireless, they have malleable hooks that wrap around your ears for extra stability as you move. This design is more comfortable for most people and helps ensure your earbuds don’t fall out of your ears during strenuous activity. They’re also rated IPX4 water resistance, have around 11 hours of battery life, and feature a Hi chip for seamless pairing with Apple devices.
They have a more neutral sound profile than some other older Beats headphones, which you might like if you don’t like heavy bass or listen to heavy podcasts or audiobooks while working out. Unfortunately, they don’t have comprehensive customization options, and the accompaniment interface is very limited. They don’t insulate you from a lot of ambient noise, so they’re not ideal if you’re looking to avoid annoying noise in the gym. However, if you run outside, you may find that the low level of noise isolation bothers you as it makes it easier to monitor your surroundings.
5. Beats Solo Pro
The Beats Solo Pro fits a lot of criteria. The design is premium, the build quality is solid and respectable, and the battery life is rated at 22 hours (40 hours with noise cancellation off).
Their fit is a bit tight and could be improved over time, but their overall balance is well judged, the bass isn’t overwhelming, and it sounds pleasant. If you want to dig deeper into the Beats brand, these headphones are a great place to start.