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The 5 Best Noise Cancelling Headphones Under $200 - Winter 2023 Reviews

Best Noise Cancelling Headphones Under $200

Noise cancelling headphones are a must-have if you like peace and quiet during long commutes or need help focusing in a busy office. ANC used to be exclusive to premium-priced headphones, but lots of cheaper models have come out recently. Some may lack certain higher-end features, but it's still possible to find good products at an affordable price point.

We’ve tested over 695 headphones and these are the best with active noise cancelling for under $200. Need more picks? Check out best noise cancelling headphones, the best headphones under $200, and the best noise cancelling headphones under $100.

  1. Best Noise Cancelling Headphones Under $200

    The best noise cancelling headphones under $200 we've tested are the Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless. These headphones are an earlier version of the Anker Soundcore Life Q35 Wireless. However, they offer a better noise isolation performance than their successor at a lower price. You can cycle through three ANC modes for different situations. Using the 'Transport' mode, intended for commuting and traveling, they block out a fantastic amount of noise, including the low rumble of bus and plane engines. The sturdy build, comfortable fit, and 44-hour continuous battery life make them a great choice for long trips. However, some users have reported durability issues, as their units' headbands cracked or broke over time.

    Out of the box, they have a v-shaped sound profile that packs lots of bass into your audio, while instruments and lead vocals are bright and sparkly. However, the sound profile changes depending on if you have ANC on or off. With ANC off, there's a dip in the low-bass and the mid-mid, so vocals and instruments are nudged to the back of your mix. You can use the companion app's presets and a graphic EQ to fine-tune the sound. They also support multi-device pairing, which is an uncommon feature for headphones at this price.

    See our review

  2. Best Sounding Noise Cancelling Headphones Under $200

    If you're looking for both ANC and neutral-sounding audio, check out the Plantronics BackBeat Go 810 Wireless. Even though their ANC doesn't perform as well as the Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless, they're a lot less bass-heavy, making them a more versatile choice for most audio content. Their ANC can still be helpful if you're looking to block out sounds like ambient chatter, though they leave something to be desired when reducing commuter sounds like engine rumbles.

    Their in-app graphic EQ lets you customize the sound profile, which can help mask extra low-bass during your commute. They're also good for office use as they have low audio leakage and block out mid-range chatter. Their battery lasts over 24 hours continuously, so you don't have to worry about them dying mid-way through your day. Some users have reported that their units' headbands cracked after a few months, so some care is needed as they don't come with a protective case.

    See our review

  3. Best Noise Cancelling Headphones For Phone Calls Under $200

    The Anker Soundcore Life Q35 Wireless are great for calls as they block out a good amount of noise across the whole sound range. From the bassy rumble of bus engines to the high-pitched hum of an AC unit, their ANC performs great. They also have three ANC settings designed for different kinds of noisy environments. They don't have as good ANC performance as their predecessor, the Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless, but they have a better-integrated mic and solid in-call noise handling. If you're taking a call from a noisy environment, it won't result in the clearest of phone calls, but these over-ears still do a decent overall job of separating your voice from the background noise.

    They have a bass-heavy sound profile, with a bigger boost in the low-bass than the more neutral-sounding Plantronics BackBeat Go 810 Wireless. It's great if you want to listen to thumpy music between calls, like hip-hop and EDM. However, their sound profile changes if you turn the ANC off, resulting in thin and hollow-sounding audio. Fortunately, you can adjust their sound to your liking using their companion app's graphic EQ and presets. The design is comfortable overall, with good build quality and a 44-hour battery life, making these a good choice for the office, especially if your job involves making a lot of calls.

    See our review

  4. Best On-Ear Noise Cancelling Headphones Under $200

    The AKG N60NC Wireless are the best noise cancelling on-ear headphones under $200 that we've tested. They're built with a comfortable on-ear design that traps less heat against your ears than most bulkier over-ear headphones like the Anker Soundcore Life Q35 Wireless. However, the tradeoff is that they aren't very stable, so they can slip off your head if you're running for the bus. The ANC feature blocks an impressive amount of noise, from bus and plane engines to ambient office chatter and humming computer fans.

    Their bass-rich sound profile adds extra thump, punch, and boom to your audio and is well-suited for genres like EDM and hip-hop. Their battery lasts about 13 hours of continuous use, so they can easily last you through a 9-5 workday without recharging them. They also support multi-device pairing, so you can easily switch audio sources between your phone and computer.

    See our review

  5. Best Noise Cancelling Earbuds Under $200

    If you want the peace of ANC without carrying bulky headphones, the Google Pixel Buds Pro Truly Wireless are the best noise cancelling earbuds we've tested for under $200. The ANC does a great job blocking the low rumble of engines and office distractions like background chatter. Despite a deep in-ear design, it's hard to get a good seal, and they can pop out of your ears while chewing or talking. This affected our ability to accurately test the bass response of their v-shaped sound profile. If you can get a good seal and fit, they deliver bright sibilants and thumpy, rumbly bass that's well-suited for genres like pop and rock. Google has also added a graphic EQ and presets with firmware update 3.14, so you can customize the audio to your liking.

    They're not the best choice for high-intensity exercising due to their tendency to pop out, but they're still suited for use at the gym or on the go. They're certified IPX4 for resistance against water splashes and have a continuous battery life of 7.6 hours with an extra 1.8 charges in the carrying case, making these a good option for all-day wear.

    If you're looking for more earbuds with ANC, check out our picks for the best noise cancelling earbuds!

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Razer Opus Wireless 2021: The Razer Opus Wireless 2021 are a good alternative to the Plantronics BackBeat Go 810 Wireless. The ANC is marginally better than the Plantronics, but the sound profile isn't as neutral, favoring a warm sound with less bass and a rolled-off treble. See our review
  • Sony WH-XB910N Wireless: The Sony WH-XB910N Wireless are a premium alternative to the Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless, as they have a better build quality and are more comfortable. However, the ANC doesn't perform as well as the Anker, and they don't have adjustable ANC settings. See our review
  • Wyze Noise-Cancelling Headphones Wireless: The Wyze Noise-Cancelling Headphones Wireless are comparable to our top pick, the similarly-priced Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless. The Anker have an adjustable ANC feature that can cut out more ambient noise, but the Wyze headphones have a more neutral sound with a less aggressive v-shaped sound profile. See our review
  • Anker SoundCore Life P3 Truly Wireless: The Anker SoundCore Life P3 Truly Wireless are budget-friendly earbuds with excellent ANC performance. They aren't as well-built as the Google Pixel Buds Pro Truly Wireless, but they have an in-app EQ and presets for sound customization. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Nov 22, 2022: Replaced the Sony WH-XB910N Wireless with the Plantronics BackBeat Go 810 Wireless and the Apple AirPods Pro Truly Wireless with the Google Pixel Buds Pro Truly Wireless due to changes in MSRP. Categories and Notable Mentions changed for relevance and consistency.

  2. Jun 27, 2022: Removed the AKG N700NC M2 Wireless because their price has risen above $200 and replaced them with the Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Wireless. Added the Jabra Elite 7 Active True Wireless as the 'Best Noise Cancelling Headphones Under $200 For Working Out' and the Sony WH-XB910N Wireless as the 'Most Comfortable Noise Cancelling Headphones Under $200'.

  3. Apr 13, 2022: Checked that picks represent the best recommendations and that the products are in stock.

  4. Feb 15, 2022: Replaced the Beats Solo Pro with the AKG N60NC because the ฮ’eats are now more expensive than $200. Also removed the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds because their price has increased. Made the Apple AirPods Pro the 'Best Noise Cancelling In-Ears Under $200' and added the Anker SoundCore Life P3 as a 'More Customizable Alternative'.

  5. Dec 14, 2021: Replaced the Razer Opus Wireless with the AKG N700NC M2 Wireless as we haven't tested the new Razer Opus variant yet. Also swapped the Apple AirPods Pro Truly Wireless with the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds Truly Wireless as the Bose's latest firmware update offers ANC presets as well as a graphic EQ.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best ANC headphones under $200 for most people. 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 noise cancelling headphones reviews for under $200. Be careful not to get caught up in the details. There are no perfect headphones and the level at which you play your music will naturally drown the ambient noise of lower amplitudes.

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