Best Noise Cancelling Headphones: Not All Are Created Equal!
Best Noise Cancelling Headphones: Not All Are Created Equal!

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Noise-canceling headphones: Overview

Plane ticket, check. Passport, check. Noise-canceling headphones, check. This is how every frequent flyer should be packing for a flight!

Noise cancelling headphones have almost overtaken the passport in order of importance for air travel. Okay, maybe I am exaggerating a tiny bit, but anyone who has flown a considerable distance is painfully aware of the inescapable noise that is such an annoying part of air travel. The monotony of these sounds is not only irritating but they can also be draining and even claustrophobic for some. Luckily for those who have discovered the wonders of noise-canceling headphones, all that can be a thing of the past.

Before Noise Cancelling Headphones, the only practical alternative to a noisy flight was a pair of earplugs. Not only could these get a little uncomfortable on a long flight, but there was also an increased chance of ear infection. Furthermore, it was quite difficult to listen to music with earplugs! Basically, you could have a choice between the noise of the plane or the sound of your own thoughts. With noise-canceling technology, however, all that has changed.

Noise Cancelling Headphones are basically hi-tech hearing protection with the capability to play music. The headphones can be used with or without the noise-canceling feature and although some brands are better than others. They are capable of obliterating ambient sounds that often rob you of a restful flight.

Best Noise Cancelling Headphones

Our Verdict

There are several things that a person might look for when searching for a good pair of headphones. Maybe you want your headphones to be wireless. Maybe you want them to be comfortable. Maybe you’d like a combination of different things, and all at a reasonable price. Well, that’s a reasonable request. But there is one thing that no-good pair of headphones should ever be without, and that is a noise-canceling feature. With the hectic world around us today, the hustle and bustle of everyday life, we are constantly bombarded with things that we’d quite frankly deal without. The power to be able to turn off the world around us with the switch of a button is there, for anyone that owns a pair of the best noise-canceling headphones.

Best noise-canceling headphones

In this review, we’re going to be checking out the 5 best Noise Cancelling Travel Headphones you can buy right now. I made this list based on my personal opinion and hours of research and I’ve listed them based on sound quality, performance, features, and price.

I’ve included options for every type of consumer so whether you’re looking for a budget set of ANC cans or a premium set with all the bells and whistles of the product for you.

#5 – Anchor Soundcore Life Q20

Noise Cancelling Headphones: Anchor Soundcore Life Q20

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

The 5th product on our list is the Anchor Soundcore Life Q20. This is our best budget Noise Cancelling Headphones. if you’re looking for a pair of budget Bluetooth headphones with active noise cancellation then the Anchor Soundcore Life Q20 may be the best headphones for you.

. Price

Currently priced at $59.99. you’ll be quite surprised to hear that the Life Q20 not only delivers surprisingly good sound but also has active noise cancellation. you’ll find the build is quite solid especially for the price point.

. Adjustable padded headband

The adjustable padded headband with memory foam ear cups is super comfy and also foldable and swivel for easy storage.

. Active noise cancellation

The active noise cancellation mode is quite impressive and blocks out 90% of low and mid-range noise. if you’re a skeptic because of the cheap price you’ll be more than surprised at how well it manages to block out the external noises. However, unlike the AirPods Pro, the Q20 lacks the transparency mode feature to let some of the ambient noise is back in when needed.

. Battery

You also get pretty good battery performance with up to 40 hours of playback but unfortunately gets cut in half with the ANC turned on.

. Performance

In terms of performance, you’ll find the sound quality of the Q20 pretty solid despite its price putting it close to the top of its class.

The overall soundstage is good with a decent dynamic range and the base up feature gives you up to 100% more bass taking the thumps in songs and making them thuds but maybe a little too much to have on for every song.

The key features

  • Drivers: 40-millimeter dynamic drivers that are high res audio certified.
  • hybrid ANC: Engineered with internal and external microphones to cancel out up to 90 percent of external noise.
  • BASSUP: 100% stronger Bassup with the feature turned on.
  • Voice Calls: Q20s microphone is more than clear for great voice calls.

Anchor Soundcore Life Q20 Review

The pros 

  • Sound quality: impressive for its price point.
  • Comfortable: memory foam ear cups mold around your ear for extra comfort.
  • Battery: up to 40 hours of playback
  • Dual-mode: can be used wireless or wired.

 The cons 

  • Ambient noise: cuts lows and mids but voices can seep through

Pro tip

If you’re looking for a budget pair of Bluetooth headphones with Active Noise Cancellation, then the Anchor Soundcore Life Q20 delivers impressive sound with a few nice features to give you plenty of bang for one of the lowest prices around.

#4 – Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC headphone

Noise Cancelling Headphones: Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC headphone

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

The 4th product on our list is the Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC headphones. these are our best value Noise Cancelling Headphones. if you’re looking for great noise-canceling headphones without paying the premium prices but still want a trusted name then the Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC may be the perfect cans for you.

A great companion for travel, It has solid sound quality ANC and you know you’re getting a great product from Sennheiser.

. Price

Currently priced at $95. the Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC offers the Sennheiser sound with ANC at an affordable price without sacrificing too much for your listening pleasure.

. Design

You’ll find the look is understated with the matte black finish and the build quality is solid. despite the all-plastic design that folds up nicely.

The ear cups feature very cushy memory foam that you’ll find comfortable to wear, but it’s covered with synthetic leather that doesn’t feel as luxurious and isn’t as breathable as real leather found on their higher ended headphones. if you prefer earbuds for convenience and not having to worry about breathable ear cups then you’ll want to check out the Apple AirPods Pro Coming up next,

You’ll enjoy Sennheiser’s powerful bass that comes across well with good definition as well as the sparkling trebles and warm mids.

. Sound Quality

The sound quality is quite decent but for the discerning audiophile the HD 4.50 BTNC won’t hold up to the refined sound found on the premium Sennheiser models. but a Sennheiser headphone with ANC for under $100 is a pretty sweet find. the ear cups memory foam cuts out the ambient noise fairly well on their own but once you switch on the ANC, you’ll find it does a good job at removing most of the additional background noise.

The key features

  • Connectivity: Bluetooth 4.0 and APT X
  • Noise Guard: Sennheiser’s ANC technology to cut out ambient noise.

Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC Headphones Review

The Pros

  • Sound Quality: proprietary drivers deliver powerful detailed and well-balanced sound with satisfyingly dynamic bass.
  • Design: intuitive ear-cup mounted controls for changing tracks and for making calls via the integrated microphone plus folds down nicely for travel.
  • Comfortable fit: plush memory foam for additional comfort.
  • Battery: up to 25 hours of playback but only about 19 hours with ANC enabled.

The Cons

  • ANC activation: enabling ANC can be tricky.
  • Ventilation: lacks ventilation in the ear cups.

Pro tip

If you’re looking for Noise Cancelling Headphones from a renowned brand name that’s still affordable then the Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC may be perfect for you.

#3 – Apple AirPods Pro

Apple AirPods Pro

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The 3rd product on our list is the Apple AirPods Pro these are our best noise-canceling AirPods. you probably already know that the Apple AirPods Pro is extremely comfortable and deliver exceptional sound. but did you know that they have one of the best active noise-canceling around?

If you’re in the Apple ecosystem and looking for a great ANC headphone, then the AirPods Pro may be the go-to choice for you.

. Price

Currently priced at $249. the AirPods Pro delivers premium sound and a great user experience the Apple fans come to expect.

With AirPods Pro you’ll notice a difference in comfort and feel from any other earbud they feature a new in ER design with soft pliant silicone tips that fit securely in your ears to create a perfect seal and they feel incredibly natural and extremely comfortable and eliminate the clogged feeling.


Apple’s ANC is one of the best around and uses Microphones both on the outside of the earbud and inward-facing so the adaptive EQ algorithm can make tweaks hundreds of times a second.

. Design Quality

You’ll be completely wowed by the sound quality the advanced DSP automatically equalizes your music based on the shape of your ear for amazing sound performance.

There’s a lot of robust improvements and plenty of features that you’ll love including apple’s force sensor on the stems so you can squeeze to control your music and toggle between noise cancellation and transparency mode.

The key features

  • Forced Sensor Stems: Easily control functions with simple squeezes on the stems.
  • Transparency mode: allows some surrounding noise to come through so you can hear traffic or people talking to you.

Apple AirPods Pro Review

The pros 

  • Sound Quality: The automatic Equalization with DSP technology delivers incredibly dynamic sound.
  • Active Noise Cancelling: the AirPods Pro delivers near-perfect noise cancellation.

 The Cons 

  • Lightning cable: charging requires apple’s lightning cable. inconvenient for android users but should not come as a surprise to existing iPhone users.

Pro tip

If you’re looking for one of the best headphones with ANC the Apple AirPods Pro delivers superb noise cancellation technology along with great sound quality and overall performance, making it a great choice for you, especially if you’re in the Apple ecosystem for seamless integration.

#2 – Sony noise-canceling headphones: Sony WH-1000XM3

Sony WH-1000XM3

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

The second product on our list is the Sony WH-1000XM3 these are our best sound quality Noise Cancelling Headphones. if you’re looking for one of the best Noise-canceling headphones available that delivers incredible sound then the Sony WH-1000XM3 is a great choice for you. It features the great Sony sound along with Sony’s famous ANSI technology.

. Price

Currently priced at $280. the Sony WH-1000XM3 has been regarded as one of the best when it comes to noise-canceling headphones. add the incredible sound quality, design, and features, and it’s a complete package for a great set of cans.

. Design

You’ll find the design quite similar to the previous model but it’s now 20% lighter and is better form-fitting for extra comfort making it perfect for wearing it for extended periods.

If you’re big on noise-canceling the new Sony WH-1000XM3 is 4 times more effective than the already great Sony WH-1000XM2 which is an impressive feat.

. Ambient Noises

You’ll find ambient noises are significantly reduced or eliminated especially with lower frequencies.

. Quick Attention Mode

Sony’s quick attention mode will come in handy when you need to hear what’s happening on the outside world right away, like announcements or people talking by cutting the volume and using the mics on the outside of each ear cup so you don’t have to remove your headphones.

. Sound Quality

The sound quality hasn’t gone through many notable changes from the previous model they still sound great especially on Android devices that support the APT X HD standard.

The key Features

  • APT X: Supports APT X and APT X HD
  • ANC: Outstanding noise cancellation and regarded as one of the best with a QN1 processor
  • Quick Attention Mode:  Quickly reduces the volume and uses external mics so you can hear external noises and conversations without removing your headphones.

Sony WH-1000XM3 Review

The Pros 

  • Sound quality: 40-millimeter liquid crystal polymer drivers deliver exceptional Sony quality with crystal-clear highs and weighty bass.
  • Battery: Up to 30 hours of playback with quick charge feature
  • Ports: Upgraded to USB C charge port
  • Wired Option: Includes 3.5-millimeter exporters.
  • Integrations: Works with Alexa and Google assistant.

The Cons

  • Heat: Ears can get a little warm inside the ear cups.

Pro tip

If you’re looking for a premium sound with amazing active noise cancellation then the Sony WH-1000XM3 is a great choice for you. It delivers exceptional Sony quality sound innovative quick attention mode and one of the best active noise-canceling around.

#1 – Bose NCH 700

Noise Cancelling Headphones: Bose NCH 700

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The first product on our list is the Bose NCH 700 these are our best overall noise-canceling Headphones. if you’re looking for a great pair of ANC headphones that look as sweet as it sounds then the all-new Bose NCH 700 is a great choice for you. With a sleek one-piece aesthetic look the incredible Bose sound quality and the incredible 10 levels of noise-canceling that puts it at the forefront of ANC headphones. it’s incredible!

. Price

Currently priced at $379.95. the Bose 700 challenges the Sony WH-1000XM3 is the top dog of ANC headphones. Bose incorporates an abundance of upgrades with the new NCH 700 with improved sound quality and ANC to deliver one of the best listening experiences available.


Bose had set the ANC standard for headphones with their QC 25 but Sony was able to dethrone it with the Sony WH-1000XM3 amazing noise canceling but the all-new NCH 700 is here to challenge that ANC crown.

You’ll be truly amazed at the level of noise-canceling The Bose headphones deliver with 10 different levels of ANC using an 8-microphone system can leave you basically in a silent void taking sound immersion to another level.

. Bose app

You can even use the Bose app to create favorites. so you can easily cycle through them depending on how noisy your environment is.

. Design

You’ll find the NCH 700 is sleek streamlined and looks amazing. The headband is nicely cushioned and the fit is great. So, it’s ultra-comfortable to even wear all day.

You’ll love the touch-sensitive control pad on the outer earcup panel it’s sort of like having a mini laptop trackpad so you can tap and swipe for different functions.

The key Features

  • Gesture pad: It’s a cool idea and makes controlling functions a breeze
  • Noise Cancelling: the noise cancellation isn’t just on and off you get 10 different settings to choose from and possibly the best available today.

Bose noise-canceling headphones Review

The Pros 

  • Sound Quality: new drivers deliver a great soundstage that’s vibrant bold and assertive as you would expect coming from Bose.
  • Design: The design is minimalistic and stunning with a stainless-steel headband.
  • Comfort: redesigned inside and out for maximum comfort.

The Cons 

  • Battery: only up to 20 hours not as good as the Sony WH-1000XM3.

Pro tip

If you’re looking for a great set of cans from one of the industry’s leaders for sound quality and active noise cancellation, then the Bose NCH 700 is the perfect headphones for you. With amazing sound and ANC performance with 10 different levels.

Best noise-canceling headphones under 100

There are so many headphone choices out there it’s hard to decide which is the best set to use. You should really look at how you will use the device and then plan your purchase from there.

If you are a frequent traveler and you have a lot of expenses and charges you can reduce your Noise-canceling headphones budget and go with the cheap ones.

Cheap noise-canceling headphones

Here is a collection of high-quality and affordable noise-canceling headphones that you can buy for your next trip:

iFrogz headphones

Toxix Wireless Headphones

Toxix Wireless Headphones

Rating: 4 out of 5.
  • Price: $24.99
  • Available Colors: Black, Blue
  • Shipping: Free
  • Warranty: 1 year
  • Specs: Bluetooth 4.1 prolongs battery life and delivers better sound quality, allowing you to listen clearly up to 30 ft. from your device.


Rating: 4 out of 5.
  • Price: $31.99
  • Available Colors: Black, White, Blue
  • Shipping: Free
  • Warranty: 1 year
  • Specs: AIRTIME VIBE is high-quality ANC headphones without the exclusive price. They’ve got an incredible 30 hours of battery life and a made-to-move, foldable design.

Best wireless earbuds under $100

Airtime Pro Truly Wireless Earbuds (Black)

Airtime Pro Truly Wireless Earbuds (Black)

Rating: 4 out of 5.
  • Price: $69.99
  • Available Colors: Black, White, Blue
  • Shipping: Free
  • Warranty: 1 year
  • Specs: 20 total hours of battery life and crystal-clear calls for an unrivaled wireless audio experience.


Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
  • Price: $79.99
  • Available Colors: Black, White, Blue, Mint.
  • Shipping: Free
  • Warranty: 1 year
  • Specs: Play harder and longer: AIRTIME™ SPORT has 25 hours of battery life, a sweat-resistant design, and wireless charging capabilities.

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