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The 5 Best AirPods Alternatives - Spring 2024 Reviews

Best AirPods Alternatives

With the Apple AirPods' design becoming so iconic in the past few years, many companies have started to imitate their look and shape. However, most third-party knockoffs are among some of the worst in-ears you can buy, so you're better off sticking to headphones from reputable brands that mimic the AirPods' design language and still perform well. While our recommendations don't look identical to the AirPods, they all deliver solid performance, and many have the familiar 'stem' design you might be looking for. Some even rival Apple's premium buds, although you may pay a higher cost for them.

We've tested over 255 pairs of Bluetooth earbuds and in-ears, and these are our top picks for the best alternatives to Apple's AirPods. Check our recommendations for the overall best wireless earbuds for iPhone, the best true wireless earbuds, and the best wireless Bluetooth earbuds under $100 we've tested.

  1. Best AirPods Alternative

    The best alternative to AirPods we've tested are the Bose QuietComfort Ultra Earbuds Truly Wireless. These high-end earbuds rival the Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) Truly Wireless and have a wide variety of features to help you get the most out of them. Like the Pro, they have a spatial audio feature that is accessible in their companion app to help create a more immersive and dimensional listening experience. They also offer better active noise cancellation (ANC), so they can reduce a wide range of sounds, like rumbly bus engines and ambient chatter, very well.

    Out of the box, these well-built buds have a bass-heavy sound that delivers thump and rumble to audio. If you prefer something else, their app has a graphic EQ and presets to help you fine-tune their sound to your liking. With their ANC on, they last seven hours continuously, and their carrying case supplies an additional three charges. Their comfortable fit also ensures you can wear them for long periods without experiencing fatigue. However, their integrated mic has difficulty separating speech from background noise, so if you need to make an important call, it's best to do so from a quiet space.

    See our review

  2. Best Upper Mid-Range AirPods Alternative

    The best AirPods Pro alternative we've tested in the upper mid-range price point are the Nothing Ear (2) Truly Wireless. These earbuds have a stem design like the AirPods' and even come in white if you want to match the look of Apple earbuds as much as possible. More importantly, they have a well-balanced sound profile, so mixes have the right amount of rumble and body, while instruments and voices are clear and bright-sounding. Unlike AirPods, they have an in-app EQ and presets for sound customization. There's also a feature meant to customize the sound based on the shape of your ears.

    These earbuds have an ANC feature, but they don't block out as much noise as the previous pick or the AirPods. However, it's still good at blocking sounds like background chit-chat or an A/C unit and isolates you from some lower-pitched noise like rumbling engines. The buds have a comfortable fit and a premium feel. They're rated IP55 for dust and water resistance and are stable enough to stay in place for workouts. Their continuous battery life of 5.6 hours won't last through the whole day, but they come with a case that stores about four additional charges.

    See our review

  3. Best Mid-Range AirPods Alternative

    If you're looking for the best AirPods Pro clone in the mid-range, check out the Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC Truly Wireless. These comfortable, well-built earbuds are available in several different colors, including white. They're a great choice for on-the-go use thanks to their portable design and adaptive ANC feature, which offers a remarkably good performance for the price. You can also use their Transparency Mode to stay aware of your surroundings, like when walking down a busy city street. They're rated IPX4 for resistance against water splashes.

    Out of the box, these headphones have a bass-heavy sound that brings out all the thump and rumble in your favorite tunes. It's ideal if you listen to a lot of bass-heavy genres like EDM and hip-hop, though fans of a more neutral sound will prefer the performance of the more premium Nothing Ear (2) Truly Wireless. Still, these headphones come with a graphic EQ and presets to help switch up their sound, which is a nice touch, especially since Apple doesn't offer EQ or sound customization with their AirPods. Plus, you can listen for up to nine hours without interruption, and their charging case gives you four extra recharges when you're out and about.

    See our review

  4. Best Lower Mid-Range AirPods Alternative

    The Anker SoundCore Life P3 Truly Wireless are another great wallet-friendly pick. They're just as comfortable as the Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) Truly Wireless and have a similar control scheme and battery performance. Their sound delivers more bass out of the box, which will please EDM and hip-hop fans, and their app comes with a graphic EQ and presets to fine-tune your audio. While these lower-cost in-ears have great internals, you'll mainly feel the reduced price point in real-life experience. They feel more plasticky and less premium. The case's lid is also extremely flimsy and feels like it could break if dropped while open. Plus, its battery performance isn't as impressive as what you get with the Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC Truly Wireless.

    The Anker don't offer as much noise cancellation, either. While their ANC is still excellent, the AirPods block out more of the rumble from bus and plane engines, making them more suitable for commuting. Naturally, they also have better compatibility with the Apple ecosystem, allowing for faster pairing and access to software like Apple Music's Spatial Audio. With this in mind, the Anker are a great pick if you want the same performance as the AirPods but don't care about premium features.

    See our review

  5. Best Budget AirPods Alternative

    Consider the Skullcandy Dime 3 True Wireless if you're on a tight budget. At this price, manufacturers tend to cut down on extra features. That said, these buds not only offer a very balanced and neutral sound out of the box, but they have a couple of EQ presets built-in, so you can still adjust their sound. Unlike AirPods, they also support multi-device pairing, so you can connect them to your PC and smartphone simultaneously. Their continuous battery life of over eight hours will get you from point A to point B, and their charging case has two additional charges.

    Beyond the features mentioned above, they have an otherwise simple design. They're well-built but aren't as comfortable as AirPods, as their deep in-ear fit can put pressure on your ears. If comfort is a top priority, it's worth considering the Anker Soundcore P25i/P20i True Wireless instead. They rest well in the ear and are lightweight, so you can wear them for long listening sessions without becoming fatigued. However, they don't support multi-device pairing and sound less neutral out of the box.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • OnePlus Buds Pro Truly Wireless: The OnePlus Buds Pro Truly Wireless have a similar appearance to AirPods and a well-balanced sound profile. They support multi-device pairing but have shorter continuous battery life and a less effective ANC feature than the Anker Soundcore Life P3 Truly Wireless. See our review
  • Wyze Buds Pro Truly Wireless: The Wyze ฮ’uds Pro Truly Wireless have an AirPods-like stem design and a neutral sound profile. They aren't as expensive as the Nothing Ear (2) Truly Wireless but aren't as well-built, comfortable, or customizable. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Feb 28, 2024: We've made minor updates to the text and checked that the products are in stock.

  2. Jan 04, 2024: We've replaced the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II Truly Wireless with the Bose QuietComfort Ultra Earbuds Truly Wireless and the Skullcandy Dime 2 True Wireless with the Skullcandy Dime 3 True Wireless as both replacements offer a better performance than their predecessors. We've also removed the Anker Soundcore Life P2 Truly Wireless from Notable Mentions as they aren't available.

  3. Oct 30, 2023: The JBL Live Pro+ are no longer widely available, so we've replaced them with the Nothing Ear (2) Truly Wireless as the 'Best Upper Mid-Range' pick. Theย Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC Truly Wireless were added as the 'Best Mid-Range' pick.

  4. Sep 01, 2023: Made minor updates and checked that the products are in stock.

  5. Jul 11, 2023: Removed some products that are out of stock. Replaced the Anker SoundCore Liberty Air 2 Truly Wireless with the Skullcandy Dime 2 True Wireless, and the EarFun Air Pro 2 True Wireless 2021 with the Nothing Ear (2) Truly Wireless.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best AirPods clones that we've tested. We factor in the price (a cheaper option wins over pricier a one if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability (nothing that's too hard to find or out of stock everywhere).

If you would like to choose for yourself, here is the list of all our truly wireless earbuds. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. There are no perfect headphones. Personal taste, preference, and listening habits will matter more in your selection.