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The 7 Best Headphones For Running - Spring 2024 Reviews

Updated
Best Headphones For Running

Whether you're a casual jogger or a marathon runner, music can be a perfect companion to help push you to your limits. Running headphones should be stable enough to stay on your head, as well as be comfortable, easy to use, and portable enough to take around with you. Some people like to block out as much background noise as possible when working out on a treadmill in a noisy gym. However, if you run outside, it's helpful to stay aware of your surroundings, and you'll want headphones with high build quality for improved protection against the elements.

We've tested over 770 pairs of headphones, and below are our recommendations for the best wireless headphones for running that you can buy. These picks are geared towards over-ear headphones, so if you're looking for in-ears and earbuds, you'll want to check out our recommendations for the best wireless earbuds for running. You can also see our recommendations for the best over-ear headphones for working out and the best wireless headphones.


  1. Best Headphones For Running

    The Beats Studio Pro Wireless are the best headphones for running that we've tested. You've probably seen Beats at the gym before; the brand's iconic look and sleek monochromatic colorways make them a popular choice for running and working out despite the availability of more versatile products from competitors. If you care about showing off your style, you'll want to check them out.

    In a departure from previous Beats headphones, they have a pretty neutral sound that's well-suited for a variety of audio content. That said, sibilants like cymbals are piercing, and they lack sound customization features when used via Bluetooth, so you're stuck with their sound out of the box. They also lack a W1 chip, so you can't seamlessly pair them with Apple devices.

    These headphones have a decently stable fit but can still slip off your head with more intense movement. They also have a good ANC system. While the ANC doesn't outperform the Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless (which are further down on this list), these headphones can still block out chatty gym-goers and squeaky treadmills. With their ANC on, they last over 28 hours continuously. They're also more affordable than the Sony, which may be important if you're prone to damaging your headphones while exercising.

    See our review

  2. Best Upper Mid-Range Headphones For Running

    The TREBLAB Z7 Pro Wireless are the only headphones on this list with an IP rating for water resistance, which is uncommon for over-ear headphones. Their IPX4 certification ensures they can survive the occasional splash of water without taking damage, so you don't have to worry if you get caught up in a drizzle or light shower during your run. They also feel sturdy overall and have a stable, comfortable fit.

    Their excited sound is much less neutral than the Beats Studio Pro Wireless', and they deliver intense thump, rumble, and boom to the audio while sibilants like cymbals are piercing. While this sound is well-suited for genres like rock and pop, these headphones lack customization settings to help you fine-tune them to your liking. On the upside, they have noise cancelling and can block out a great amount of ambient sound around you. With the ANC on, they last for more than 37 hours of continuous use, so you don't have to recharge them after every workout.

    See our review

  3. Best Mid-Range Headphones For Running

    If you want a less expensive option for running, try the Skullcandy Hesh Evo Wireless. These comfortable headphones have a durable build and will stay in place during a moderate jog or brisk run on the treadmill. However, they can move around during a more intense sprint. Unlike the TREBLAB Z7 Pro Wireless, they don't have an ANC system and can't cut out the low rumble of nearby traffic or mid-range ambient chatter. This can be advantageous if you want better spatial awareness while running outside.

    These headphones deliver thumpy bass to complement genres like EDM and hip-hop and keep you pumped up during your workout. That said, they also have extra treble, which makes sibilants like cymbals sound piercing. They aren't compatible with a companion app, so you can't customize their sound. Thankfully, they have a 44-hour battery life, which is significantly longer than our top pick and will last you several long runs without needing a top-up.

    See our review

  4. Best Budget Headphones For Running

    Current Deal: The Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Wireless is on sale for 20% at Amazon.com. Get Deal

    For the frugal foot racer, consider the Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Wireless. These budget headphones have decent stability, so they're more prone to slipping out of place with high-intensity movements than previous picks like the Skullcandy Hesh Evo Wireless, but they'll stay put during moderate runs and jogs. Their ANC system performs very well, considering their low price. It easily blocks out background conversations and high-pitched frequencies at the gym but will still let in some noise from passing traffic and rumbly bus engines when outside. This is a substantial leg up from the Skullcandy Hesh Evo Wireless' passive isolation.

    Their sound profile is excited and V-shaped. There's lots of rumbly, thumpy bass to complement your favorite pump-up playlists, while vocals and instruments sound clear and intense. However, the overemphasized treble range makes high-end frequencies more sharp and piercing. There's also no way to adjust their mix to suit your preferences since they don't have sound customization features like an EQ. That said, if you like how they sound out of the box, their nearly 33-hour continuous battery life will last through several long runs.

    See our review

  5. Best Bass-Heavy Headphones For Running

    While you might expect the Beats Studio Pro Wireless to be our choice for bass-heavy headphones, the Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless pack a lot more thump, rumble, and boom into their sound, making them a great option if you like your music with extra bass. They're customizable, too, so if you want to adjust the amount of bass, their companion app has you covered with a graphic EQ and presets. If that's not enough, they also have a fantastic ANC system that can easily block out noise across the range, from rumbly bus and car engines to ambient chatter.

    So what's the catch? Some people find that extra bass bloats vocals and instruments. The headphones also leak some audio at high volumes, which can be an issue if you're running on a treadmill with other people around. While they have a decently stable fit, they can still move around your head with high-intensity movements. On the upside, they have over 37 hours of continuous battery life, and their build is quite premium, although all this comes with a higher price tag than the Beats. Plus, the manufacturer has discontinued these headphones, so you'll have to grab a pair while supplies last.

    If you can't track down a pair or dislike trying to operate touch controls with the necessary precision while running, the Bose QuietComfort Headphones Wireless have dedicated physical buttons and are pretty bassy sounding. While the 26 hours of continuous battery life certainly will last you a few runs and the noise cancellation is impressive, it doesn't quite outdo the Sony headphones.

    See our review

  6. Best Headphones For Safely Running Outdoors

    Having good spatial awareness is key to staying safe when running outside. Unlike the previous picks, the Bose Ultra Open Earbuds Truly Wireless don't cover your ears. They're more like ear cuffs; they hook around your inner ear for supreme stability, ensuring they're comfortable and stay put even during the toughest runs. Their design allows you to hear your surroundings without compromising on audio playback. They're even certified IPX4 for resistance against splashes of water, too. There are a couple of drawbacks though, namely, you don't get as much bass as you would with other, more traditional picks on this list.

    They try to compensate for the lack of thump and rumble with a bit of extra high bass, adding warmth to your audio. Their overall sound is quite bright, though, so while vocals and instruments sound clear, they're also piercing. You can customize their sound to your liking using their companion app's graphic EQ and presets, and they even have a virtual soundstage feature to make your tracks sound more immersive. They last 9.5 hours continuously, but if you need to top them up, their carrying case holds under three extra charges.

    Unfortunately, these buds will run you back a pretty penny, but if you're looking for more affordable open-ear headphones, you'll want to consider the Shokz OpenRun Bone Conduction. They lack a companion app for sound customization and aren't quite as comfortable, but they are much more affordable and even have an IP67 certification for dust and water resistance.

    See our review

  7. Best Earbuds For Running

    The Beats Powerbeats Pro Truly Wireless are the best earbuds for running we've tested. Their ear hook design makes it almost impossible to shake them off during an intense sprint or brisk jog. They're also lightweight and flexible enough to fit comfortably around your ears without causing any discomfort. They're rated IPX4 for resistance against water splashes with good build quality, and their H1 chip allows for seamless pairing with Apple devices, so you won't have to waste much time pairing them to your iPhone before you get going.

    While they lack sound customization options, they have a neutral default sound profile suitable for most audio. Their battery lasts nearly 12 hours on a single charge, meaning they're great for longer runs or marathon training sessions. They don't passively block out much ambient noise, but you might not mind hearing more of what's happening around you. If you run at the gym and want the option to block out noise, check out the Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) Truly Wireless. They filter out sounds like car traffic and ambient voices very well but aren't as stable because the fit relies entirely on the ear tips, and their battery doesn't last nearly as long as the Beats.

    If you like earbuds for running, check out our list of the best earbuds for running and working out.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Bose QuietComfort Ultra Headphones Wireless: The high-end Bose QuietComfort Ultra Headphones Wireless are worth considering if you're willing to pay a premium price, especially as they're more comfortable than the Beats Studio Pro Wireless and have a better noise isolation performance. However, they leak more audio at high volumes. See our review
  • Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 Wireless: The Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 Wireless are premium over-ears. Their build quality surpasses the Beats Studio Pro Wireless, and they have a more stable fit. However, they're significantly more expensive and have a less neutral sound out of the box. See our review
  • Razer Opus Wireless 2021: Razer Opus Wireless 2021 are upper mid-range over-ear headphones. Their ANC can block out more background than the TREBLAB Z7 Pro Wireless. They also lack an IP rating for water resistance, which is common for over-ear headphones. See our review
  • Anker Soundcore Space Q45 Wireless: Anker Soundcore Space Q45 Wireless are mid-range over-ear headphones. They have excellent ANC performance, a longer battery life, and more sound customization options than the Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Wireless. However, they're less stable on your head than the Skullcandy Hesh Evo Wireless. See our review
  • Beats Solo3 2019 Wireless: The Beats Solo3 2019 Wireless are on-ear headphones—a design that some people prefer for the compromise of wearing smaller headphones while still getting some airflow to part of your ears. They're one of the more stable examples of on-ear headphones but will shift with intense movements. They're pretty bass-heavy and also lack the noise cancelling of the Beats Studio Pro Wireless. However, sometimes they're heavily discounted. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Mar 29, 2024: We've updated our pick from the 'Best Bone Conduction Headphones For Running' to the 'Best Headphones For Safely Running Outdoors' and replaced the Shokz OpenRun Bone Conduction with the Bose Ultra Open Truly Wireless as the Bose are more stable and customizable.

  2. Mar 01, 2024: We've made minor updates to the text and checked that the products are available.

  3. Feb 08, 2024: We've checked the picks without changing them, added information about the Bose QuietComfort Headphones Wireless, and added the Beats Solo3 Wireless 2019 as a Notable Mention for people who want on-ear headphones. Otherwise, there are minor changes throughout the text.

  4. Jan 10, 2024: We've verified that all our picks remain up-to-date and in stock and that the information in this article remains accurate.

  5. Dec 06, 2023: We've checked our picks for accuracy and availability. There hasn't been a change in our recommendations.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best Bluetooth headphones for running and the best earbuds for running to buy for most people in each price range. 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 of our headphone reviews, ranked by their suitability for sports and fitness. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. There are no perfect headphones. Personal taste, preference, and where you use the headphones will matter more in your selection.