Many phones on the market have a single USB-C port as a one-size-fits-all connection for powering the device, sending files, and audio connectivity. This port technology has become more popular with manufacturers in recent years, and nearly all mobile devices come with a USB-C port. Some USB-C headphones are wired-only, while others offer the flexibility of being used wirelessly, too. While we haven't tested a lot of USB-C headphones, we plan on updating the article as we test more in the future.
We've tested over 550 pairs of headphones, and below are our recommendations for the best USB-C headphones you can buy. Also, check out our recommendations for the best headphones, the best Bluetooth headphones, and the best true wireless earbuds.
The Razer Hammerhead USB-C ANC are the best USB-C earbuds we've tested. These well-built in-ears come with a non-detachable USB-C braided cable that lets you connect with newer smartphones and laptops. Thanks to their wired-only design, you don't have to worry about running out of battery, and their latency is low enough for watching videos or movies on your smartphone.
Overall, they don't have a very neutral sound profile, but their balanced mid-range makes them suitable for listening to vocal-centric content like podcasts and audiobooks. They don't leak a lot of sound, either, so you can crank up the volume without annoying the people around you. They also come with a spongy carrying case to help you bring them with you on-the-go.
Unfortunately, their uneven sound profile is lacking a lot of low-bass, and they don't have any sound customization options. Also, while they have an active noise cancellation (ANC) feature, they still struggle to block out bass-heavy sounds like bus and plane engines. That said, they can block out background noise typically found in an office setting, like chatter from nearby coworkers.
The best USB-C headphones that we've tested are the Sennheiser Momentum 3 Wireless. These over-ears have a comfortable fit so that you can wear them throughout your day without too much fatigue. Since they also support Bluetooth for a wireless connection, they have a great battery performance and last over 17 hours on a single charge.
Their bass-heavy sound profile delivers a thumpy, punchy sound that's well-suited for genres like EDM. That said, if you prefer to tweak their sound to your liking, their Sennheiser Smart Control app offers a parametric EQ as well as presets. They also have an impressive active noise cancelling feature that can help block out the rumble of engines on your commute or ambient chatter at the office.
Unfortunately, if you like to listen to your audio at a high volume at the office, those around you are likely to hear it. Their over-ear design also makes them fairly bulky, and they're not very portable. That said, if you prefer an over-ear design, these offer a versatile and customizable sound experience.
The best USB-C headphones for wired gaming that we've tested are the JBL Quantum ONE. They're decently comfortable and have customizable RGB lighting on the ear cups, which is great if you want to change their look to match your style. They also have low audio latency using their USB-C connection.
Thanks to their well-balanced sound profile, they're suitable for a variety of audio content. Their companion software has a graphic EQ and presets if you want to customize their sound to better-suit your gameplay though. They also have a virtual surround feature, which is advertised to make gameplay more immersive, although we don't currently test this. If you like to chat with teammates while you play, their boom mic does an excellent job of recording your voice, even in noisy environments.
Unfortunately, they're prone to inconsistent audio delivery, and their sound may vary depending on their fit, seal, and positioning on your head. They also don't have any wireless compatibility, which may be disappointing for users who want a little more versatility and flexibility from their headphones. Still, if you like to game with a USB-C connection, their low latency, sound enhancement features, and excellent mic make them a worthwhile choice.
The best budget USB-C headphones that we've tested are the Samsung AKG Type-C. They're comfortable, well-built, and have a non-detachable braided USB-C cable that lets you connect to your USB-C devices. Their low latency makes them suitable for watching videos or movies, too.
Overall, they have a fairly neutral yet bass-heavy sound profile that adds an extra boom and punch to your audio. They don't leak a lot of noise, either, so you can crank up the volume on your favorite music without being too distracting for those around you. Also, their in-line microphone has a good recording quality, and they're a fair choice for making phone calls.
Unfortunately, they don't have the most stable fit, and they may fall out of your ears if you try to wear them during your workouts. Also, they don't have a noise cancellation feature, and they struggle to block out bass-heavy background noises like bus or plane engines. Fortunately, they can still passively isolate against noises typically found in an office setting, like ambient chatter from nearby coworkers.
If you're looking for a more stable pair of budget USB-C earbuds, consider the Google Pixel USB-C Earbuds. While they aren't as well-built or as comfortable as the more neutral-sounding Samsung AKG Type-C, they have good stability, so they shouldn't fall out of your ears during moderately intense exercise like jogging. Overall, they have a boomy sound profile, so even though they're lacking low-bass, they can help you stay motivated during your workouts. They don't leak a lot of noise, either. While they have an awful noise isolation performance, this feature may be useful for people who want to stay aware of their surroundings while listening to music, like outdoor runners.
If you want better-built, more comfortable USB-C headphones with a more consistent audio delivery across users, check out the Samsung. However, if you want a more stable pair, consider the Google ones instead.
Jan 18, 2021: Added the Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE to Notable Mentions. They're well-built gaming headphones that can be used with a USB-C connection. However, their boom microphone doesn't outperform the JBL Quantum ONE's boom mic.
Dec 21, 2020: Replaced the Google Pixel USB-C Earbuds with the Samsung AKG Type-C as 'Best Budget'. Added the Google Pixel USB-C Earbuds as a 'More Stable Alternative'.
Dec 03, 2020: Minor updates to the text and verification for accuracy; no changes in product picks.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best USB-C headphones for most people in each price range. We factor in the price, feedback from our visitors, and availability.
If you want to check out our reviews yourself, here is the list of all our reviews of USB-C headphones. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no headphones are perfect, most are great enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not too noticeable unless you look for them.