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The 7 Best Budget Wireless Headphones - Summer 2019
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Best Budget Wireless Headphones
377 Headphones Tested
  • Store-bought headphones; no cherry-picked units
  • Retest after major updates
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Wireless technologies have come a long way in recent years, and you don’t need to pay a small fortune to own decent wireless headphones anymore. Wireless headphones still have some flaws, though: Bluetooth headphones generally aren’t great for gaming since they tend to lag too much and have poor mic quality, but gaming headphones that use dedicated wireless transmitters lack the portability and versatility of Bluetooth headphones. That said, there are a lot of wireless headphones out there and you’re sure to find a pair that suits your needs.

We’ve tested 176 wireless headphones and below are our recommendations for the best budget Bluetooth headphones to buy in 2019. If you’re looking for a more specific type of headphones, check out our recommendations for the best wireless Bluetooth earbuds under $50 or $100, or take a look at the mid-range and budget categories for our best wireless gaming headsets.

  1. Best Budget Headphones Under $50: Mpow H5 Wireless

    Usage Ratings - Version 1.2

    Test Benches:

    • 1.2: Winter 2018
    • 1.1: Summer 2017
    • 1.0: Winter 2017
    • 0.9: Winter 2016
    6.7
    Mixed Usage
    What it is: This is the combination of the different use cases to evaluate how versatile the headphones are. Therefore an everyday headphone should be well-rounded enough to adapt to most situations and environments without significant losses in sound quality, design ergonomics or isolation.
    Score components:
    7.3
    Critical Listening
    What it is: The level of audio fidelity a headphone can reproduce. Therefore a balanced and true representation of bass, mids, treble, soundstage and imaging, as well as a comfortable listening experience, is essential for critical listening.
    Score components:
    6.5
    Commute/Travel
    What it is: How well the headphones handle the loud environments involved in commuting or traveling. Therefore your listening experience should be comfortable, hassle-free and as isolated from noise as possible.
    6.8
    Sports/Fitness
    What it is: How well-adapted the headphones are, to use while doing sports or strenuous exercise. Therefore the headphones should not be too cumbersome and deliver a stable and comfortable listening experience.
    6.7
    Office
    What it is: How well the headphones can deliver a comfortable and isolated listening experience in an office-like environment. They should not leak much and should block the noise of a busy office.
    5.8
    Gaming
    Type : Over-ear
    Enclosure : Closed-Back
    Wireless : Yes
    Noise-Cancelling : Yes
    Mic : Yes
    Transducer : Dynamic

    The best cheap wireless headphones under $50 that we’ve tested so far are the Mpow H5. There aren’t very many decent pairs of over-ear headphones in this price range, but these are Bluetooth over-ear headphones with active noise cancelling (ANC) that are surprisingly well-rounded for the price.

    They’re fairly comfortable and their build quality feels on par with headphones that cost significantly more. They come with a great hard case, too, which is a nice touch at this price point. They even support multi-device pairing, so you can pair them with two devices simultaneously. They sound decent in general, but will sound a bit boomy and muddy to more critical listeners. They have an ordinary rechargeable battery that lasts for 12 hours, but they also support passive playback, so they can be used wired when their battery dies.

    Unfortunately, their noise cancelling performance isn’t very good, as it fails to isolate noise well. If you care most about noise cancellation, consider the Cowin E7 Wireless, which isolate much better but sound significantly worse and feel more cheaply made. All things considered, the Mpow H5 are decent over-ear headphones for most uses.

    See our review

  2. Cheaper In-Ear Alternative: Anker SoundBuds Curve Wireless

    Type : In-ear
    Enclosure : Closed-Back
    Wireless : Yes
    Noise-Cancelling : No
    Mic : Yes
    Transducer : Dynamic

    If you prefer the portability of earbuds and are looking for something even cheaper, get the Anker SoundBuds Curve. They’re the among the best cheap wireless in-ears we’ve tested so far and provide very good value for their price. They’re surprisingly comfortable for in-ear headphones and fit very securely. They have good, deep bass, and although they lack a bit of emphasis on vocals and lead instruments, they sound decent overall. They also have a 13-hour battery life, which is quite good.

    These headphones have a fairly premium look for their price, but their audio cable feels quite thin and prone to breakage. They’re also not sweat-proof, so although they have a nice stable fit, they might not survive your toughest workouts. If you need more durable earbuds for sports, check out the slightly more expensive Anker Soundcore Spirit X. Otherwise, it’s hard to beat the SoundBuds Curve.

    See our review

  3. Best Budget Headphones Under $100: Mpow H10 Wireless

    Usage Ratings - Version 1.2

    Test Benches:

    • 1.2: Winter 2018
    • 1.1: Summer 2017
    • 1.0: Winter 2017
    • 0.9: Winter 2016
    7.0
    Mixed Usage
    What it is: This is the combination of the different use cases to evaluate how versatile the headphones are. Therefore an everyday headphone should be well-rounded enough to adapt to most situations and environments without significant losses in sound quality, design ergonomics or isolation.
    Score components:
    7.2
    Critical Listening
    What it is: The level of audio fidelity a headphone can reproduce. Therefore a balanced and true representation of bass, mids, treble, soundstage and imaging, as well as a comfortable listening experience, is essential for critical listening.
    Score components:
    7.1
    Commute/Travel
    What it is: How well the headphones handle the loud environments involved in commuting or traveling. Therefore your listening experience should be comfortable, hassle-free and as isolated from noise as possible.
    6.8
    Sports/Fitness
    What it is: How well-adapted the headphones are, to use while doing sports or strenuous exercise. Therefore the headphones should not be too cumbersome and deliver a stable and comfortable listening experience.
    7.2
    Office
    What it is: How well the headphones can deliver a comfortable and isolated listening experience in an office-like environment. They should not leak much and should block the noise of a busy office.
    6.0
    Gaming
    Type : Over-ear
    Enclosure : Closed-Back
    Wireless : Yes
    Noise-Cancelling : Yes
    Mic : Yes
    Transducer : Dynamic

    The best budget Bluetooth headphones under $100 that we’ve tested so far are the Mpow H10. They’re comfortable over-ear headphones that are quite versatile. They don’t isolate as well as some of the more premium options out there, but they’re still among the best noise cancelling headphones we’ve seen to date, especially for their price.

    These headphones provide a satisfactory listening experience thanks to their fairly well-balanced sound. They have decent noise isolation and reduce noise across the spectrum reasonably well. They’ll help attenuate the deep thump and rumble of bus engines, as well as the sounds of a lively office to a decent degree. They also have a great 23-hour battery life that doesn’t take too long charge. They can even be used while charging, which is a great feature that some more premium headphones we’ve tested are lacking.

    On the downside, they don’t have the best build quality, especially compared to the even cheaper Mpow H5. They also leak quite a bit, so you might not want to blast your music at the office. The Anker SoundCore Life 2 Wireless are better-built and leak less, but they don’t isolate noise as well. Overall, the Mpow H10 provide very good value thanks to their comfortable fit and fairly well-rounded performance at their price point.

    See our review

  4. Alternative For Sports: Anker SoundCore Liberty Air Truly Wireless

    Type : In-ear
    Enclosure : Closed-Back
    Wireless : Truly Wireless
    Noise-Cancelling : No
    Mic : Yes
    Transducer : Dynamic

    If you prefer the more compact format of truly wireless earbuds, then get the Anker SoundCore Liberty Air. They have a sleek, low-profile design, similar to that of the Apple AirPods but with much better audio reproduction and passive isolation. Their battery performance is about average for truly wireless in-ears in 2019, and they provide about 4 hours of continuous playback but will last for 12 hours more if you store them in their charging case throughout the day.

    Unfortunately, they have worse latency performance than most Bluetooth headphones, which makes them a poor choice for watching videos or playing games on a mobile device. Their battery also only lasts for about 4 hours, but their charging case provides up to 12 extra hours of playback. Overall, they’re decent truly wireless for most uses and are among the best true wireless earbuds we’ve reviewed.

    See our review

  5. Customizable Alternative For Sports: Jaybird Tarah Wireless

    Type : In-ear
    Enclosure : Closed-Back
    Wireless : Yes
    Noise-Cancelling : No
    Mic : Yes
    Transducer : Dynamic

    If you need sports-oriented earbuds to handle your most intense workouts, get the Jaybird Tarah. They’re not truly wireless like the Anker SoundCore Liberty Air, but they have an IPX7 rating for superior water resistance and have a very stable fit that makes them a great choice for sports. They sound decent and are compatible with the impressive Jaybird MySound app that gives you access to a great parametric EQ so you can customize your sound your way.

    Unfortunately, they come with a proprietary charging cradle that’s rather restrictive. The cradle is not only proprietary to the brand, but also to the model of headphone, so if you upgrade to another model like the Jaybird Tarah Pro, you’ll get a different charger once again. Besides that though, these are all-around great sports in-ears that are worth considering.

    See our review

  6. Best Budget Headphones Under $150: Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2 Wireless 2016

    Usage Ratings - Version 1.2

    Test Benches:

    • 1.2: Winter 2018
    • 1.1: Summer 2017
    • 1.0: Winter 2017
    • 0.9: Winter 2016
    7.3
    Mixed Usage
    What it is: This is the combination of the different use cases to evaluate how versatile the headphones are. Therefore an everyday headphone should be well-rounded enough to adapt to most situations and environments without significant losses in sound quality, design ergonomics or isolation.
    Score components:
    7.7
    Critical Listening
    What it is: The level of audio fidelity a headphone can reproduce. Therefore a balanced and true representation of bass, mids, treble, soundstage and imaging, as well as a comfortable listening experience, is essential for critical listening.
    Score components:
    7.4
    Commute/Travel
    What it is: How well the headphones handle the loud environments involved in commuting or traveling. Therefore your listening experience should be comfortable, hassle-free and as isolated from noise as possible.
    7.1
    Sports/Fitness
    What it is: How well-adapted the headphones are, to use while doing sports or strenuous exercise. Therefore the headphones should not be too cumbersome and deliver a stable and comfortable listening experience.
    7.5
    Office
    What it is: How well the headphones can deliver a comfortable and isolated listening experience in an office-like environment. They should not leak much and should block the noise of a busy office.
    5.9
    Gaming
    Type : Over-ear
    Enclosure : Closed-Back
    Wireless : Yes
    Noise-Cancelling : Yes
    Mic : Yes
    Transducer : Dynamic

    The best budget wireless headphones under $150 that we’ve tested so far are the Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2. They’re well-rounded, versatile over-ear headphones that support Bluetooth and have ANC. They’re fairly comfortable and have a very easy-to-use control scheme that provides great tactile feedback.

    These are among the best headphones for bass that we’ve tested. They have a good, bass-heavy sound that delivers a lot of thump and rumble without sounding too boomy. They also have a remarkable battery that lasts for 30 hours and charges fairly quickly. They have lots of power-saving features that help prolong their battery life and can also be used passively once the battery eventually dies.

    They have okay noise isolation, but the similarly priced JBL E65BTNC perform a bit better in this respect. They leak more, though, which makes them less well-suited than the Plantronics for commuting or office use. Overall, these headphones are hard to beat for their price, especially if you’re a fan of bass.

    See our review

  7. Alternative For Gaming: SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition Wireless

    Type : Over-ear
    Enclosure : Closed-Back
    Wireless : Yes
    Noise-Cancelling : No
    Mic : Yes
    Transducer : Dynamic

    If you’re a PS4 or a PC gamer and are looking for great gaming headphones that won’t break the bank, get the SteelSeries Arctis 7 2019 Edition. They can’t be used wirelessly with your mobile devices since they don’t support Bluetooth like the Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2, but their wireless USB dongle provides an excellent low-latency gaming experience. They’re comfortable, well-built headphones with a great boom microphone for multiplayer games.

    Although these headphones are highly customizable on PC with the SteelSeries Engine software, the Logitech G935 sound more balanced and have even more customization options thanks to their mappable buttons. However, the Logitech have a plasticky build and their microphone performs significantly worse. Overall, these headphones are a great choice for PC and PS4 gamers looking for reasonably priced yet feature-packed wireless gaming headphones.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • AUKEY Latitude Wireless: Decent wireless earbuds with remarkable isolation. Less comfortable than the Anker SoundBuds Curve, but a good alternative. See our review
  • Skullcandy Jib Wireless: Inexpensive wireless earbuds that perform okay, but don’t provide as much value as the Anker SoundBuds Curve. See our review
  • JBL E65BTNC Wireless: Decent over-ear wireless headphones that have decent noise isolation and sound good, but don’t have the great battery life of the Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2. See our review
  • HyperX Cloud Flight: A good wireless gaming headset with an outstanding microphone, but not as well-built as the SteelSeries Arctis 7. See our review
  • Logitech G935 Wireless Gaming Headset: A good wireless gaming headset with tons of customization options, but don’t have as good of a microphone as the SteelSeries Arctis 7. See our review
  • Jaybird Freedom F5 Wireless 2016: Decent wireless in-ears that are great for sports but outperformed by the more comfortable Jaybird Tarah. See our review
  • JBL Endurance Sprint Wireless: Decent wireless in-ears that have great audio reproduction and an IPX7 rating, but aren’t as comfortable the Anker SoundBuds Curve. See our review
  • Anker SoundCore Space NC Wireless: Okay wireless over-ears with ANC that have very good isolation performance but have a dark sound. See our review
  • Skullcandy Grind Wireless: Wireless on-ear headphones that provide decent value for the price. See our review
  • Cowin E7 Wireless: Unremarkable wireless over-ears with ANC that have decent isolation performance but feel cheaply made and sound mediocre. See our review
  • Anker SoundCore Spirit X Wireless: Wireless in-ears similar to the SoundBuds Curve but are more water-resistant. See our review
  • JBL Reflect Mini 2 Wireless: Decent wireless in-ears that are great for sports and are a solid alternative to the Jaybird Tarah if you don’t mind not having an EQ. See our review
  • Plantronics BackBeat Go 810 Wireless: Stylish over-ears with a sleek look and great neutral sound but are less comfortable and well-built than the Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2. See our review
  • Anker SoundCore Life 2 Wireless: Comfortable budget over-ears that perform fairly well over but their ANC is mediocre. See our review
  • Corsair HS70 Wireless: Well-built wireless gaming headphones that sound impressive and have a great battery but can’t be used wired. See our review

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best cheap Bluetooth headphones for most people to buy. We factor in the price (cheaper headphones win over pricier ones if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability (no headphones that are difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).

If you would like to choose for yourself, here is the list of all our reviews of cheap wireless headphones. 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.

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