The Best Headphones on the Market Right Now

Heart - Add to profile
Book Flights

BOOK NOW

Mar 06, 2018

by NIC HEALEY

Whether you’re a gym junkie or just looking to tune out on a long-haul flight, there are headphones with your name on them.

Best for style

Bang & Olufsen Beoplay E8

$449

The E8 wireless earbuds continue Bang & Olufsen’s proud reputation for superior sound and smart design, with a sleek black and silver finish. The battery lasts for four hours and, if you’re out and about, the leather case’s built-in battery pack allows you to recharge twice. Touch-surface controls make for a slick and discreet style but be warned: these are light, tiny and easy to misplace if you’re not paying attention.

Best for running

Fitbit Flyer

$200 

As you’d expect from Fitbit, the Flyer wireless headphones are ideal for the serious runner. Durable and made for all weather conditions, the earbuds are customisable to ensure a good, tight fit that helps with noise cancellation. Great sound quality with a surprisingly deep bass will keep you motivated while you run. Pair them with the Fitbit Ionic smart watch and get audio coaching sessions even if you leave your phone at home.

Best for noise cancelling

Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC

$330 

These over-ear wireless headphones aren’t exactly tiny but you’ll be glad you packed them for your trip. The large battery will run Sennheiser’s patented NoiseGard noise-cancelling technology for 19 hours on a single charge and the ergonomically designed earpads are super-comfortable. If you do end up being caught short of charge in the air, the supplied cable will still let you (passively) tune in to the inflight entertainment.

Best for global travel

Google Pixel Buds

$249 

First the bad news: to access the best feature of these cool earbuds – real-time translation of 40 languages via the Google Translate app – you’re going to need a Google Pixel phone. The good news? It’s worth getting one. The Pixel Buds look striking and are packed with value. The flexible design means it might take a while to get the fit right but when you do, the buds are comfortable for long periods. We road-tested the clever translation function using both Japanese and Portuguese. There’s a mild delay as the translation is made but this is an impressive feature that will only get better in time. 

Best for flying

Bose QuietComfort 35 II

$499

The second generation of the much-lauded Bose headphones adds one-touch access to Google Assistant, letting you use voice commands to make calls, get questions answered and more. While that and the high-quality noise-cancelling features are great, it’s the comfort factor that really shines. Even the most seasoned flyer will appreciate the soft earcups, cushioned headband and lightweight construction that make them ideal for long-haul journeys. Pop them on and you’ll barely notice you’re wearing them.

Best for the gym

Plantronics BackBeat Fit 505

$149

Wearing over-ear headphones while training? Don’t scoff! The BackBeat Fit 505 are light enough for you to forget they’re on but sturdy enough that they won’t go flying during a frenetic workout. The large earcups hold a big battery – 18 hours of charge all up – and the pads are made of sweat-resistant memory foam to avoid any stinky situations.

SEE ALSO: 6 Smart Suitcases That Will Change the Way You Travel