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We've recently released our Test Bench 1.7 update for Headphones! Read the Noise isolation R&D Article to learn more.

The 6 Best USB-C Headphones - Summer 2024 Reviews

Updated Jun 21, 2024 at 09:28 am
Best USB-C Headphones

More and more phone manufacturers on the market are switching to USB-C ports as a one-size-fits-all connection for power, file transfer, and audio connection. The headphone market is following suit and more models are being released that come with USB-C cables. Some USB-C headphones are wired-only, while others offer the flexibility of being used wirelessly.

We've tested over 790 pairs of headphones, and below are our recommendations for the best USB-C earphones and headphones. For more picks, check out our recommendations for the best headphones, the best Bluetooth headphones, and the best true wireless earbuds.

  1. Best USB-C Headphones

    The Bowers & Wilkins Px8 Wireless are the best USB-C headphones we've tested. These premium headphones can connect via Bluetooth, USB, or analog, so they're very versatile. They have a sturdy, premium design and a comfortable fit that's ideal for longer listening sessions, with extra features like active noise canceling (ANC) and multi-device pairing to improve their performance. The ANC does a good job of cutting out ambient sound when you're walking along a busy street or working at the office.

    These headphones have a bass-heavy sound profile out of the box. The extra thump, punch, and boom can help make mixes with a prominent bassline feel more lively, but it also slightly muddies vocals and instruments in your mix. While it doesn't offer the most robust equalizer out there, the Bowers & Wilkins Music app offers bass and treble sliders to give you some control over their sound. Unfortunately, you'll only be able to receive audio via wired USB as this connection doesn't support mic input.

    See our review

  2. Best Upper Mid-Range USB-C Headphones

    Check out the Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 Wireless for premium headphones at a lower price point. Like their higher-end cousin, the Bowers & Wilkins Px8 Wireless, they're designed to work via Bluetooth, USB, and analog. They have a snug, comfy fit around your ears, but the headband puts pressure on the side of your head, negatively affecting comfort over long listening sessions. Though not as good as the Px8, their ANC also works well, isolating you from mid- and high-range background noise, like office chatter and PC fans. However, like the Px8, they only support audio via wired USB.

    Out of the box, these headphones have an excited, V-shaped sound profile that delivers extra bright treble and thumpy bass. While this makes them well-suited for genres like pop and hip-hop, the mix ends up sounding a bit muddy and piercing. Fortunately, their companion app has a two-band EQ to let you change their sound to match your preferences. They're a very good choice if you're looking for more wallet-friendly USB-C headphones.

    See our review

  3. Best Mid-Range USB-C Headphones

    The Beats Solo 4 Wireless are the best mid-range USB-C headphones we've tested. Compared to their predecessor, the Beats Solo3 2019 Wireless, these add a built-in digital-analog converter (DAC) and support USB-C audio. The DAC means using these with a USB-C cable will add a little latency compared to using the included analog 1/8" TRS cable, but it's only noticeable if you're using them for delay-sensitive tasks like online gaming.

    Though their build quality isn't quite as good as the Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 Wireless, the Beats are much cheaper and have a significantly more balanced sound out of the box. Their bass accuracy is exceptional, so kick drums and basslines have just the right amount of thump and punch without becoming muddy, and their mids, while not quite as balanced as the Px7 S2, are still good. Vocals and instruments sound detailed and present without much honk or boxiness.

    Unlike both Bowers & Wilkins cans we've recommended above, which have good noise isolation, the Beats don't have any noise cancelling technology, so they do a bad job of reducing sound around you. This makes them only an adequate choice for listening in the office or on your commute, where the sound of nearby conversations or the rumble of train engines will be clearly audible. Finally, though they come with a microphone, it's poor quality. If you plan on making a lot of phone calls using your headphones, you'll be better served by the Audeze Maxwell Wireless, listed below as our best phone call pick.

    See our review

  4. Best Sounding USB-C Headphones

    If sound quality is your thing, the Focal Bathys Wireless are the best-sounding USB-C headphones we've tested. These Bluetooth headphones are designed for audiophiles on the go and have several connection options, including a USB-C to USB-C cable for newer devices. While they have perceptible latency via wired USB since they're performing analog-to-digital conversion, it's not much of an issue if you're only listening to audio. Thanks to their DAC, the USB connection also allows you to benefit from higher audio quality than via Bluetooth.

    They have French-made aluminum-magnesium dynamic drivers, which deliver a rich sound profile with a well-balanced bass range and clear vocals and instruments. You can also fine-tune their sound using their companion app. While the same price as the Bowers & Wilkins Px8 Wireless, the Focals are bulky and heavy, with a high clamping force that can cause fatigue after long listening periods, especially if you wear glasses.

    Fortunately, they have good noise cancellation performance that will help reduce a range of noise, from rumbling engines to background chit-chat and whiny A/C units. They also last nearly 30 hours on a single charge; used wirelessly, they'll get you through a few long work days without recharging.

    See our review

  5. Best Type-C Headphones For Phone Calls

    The best call-centric USB-C headphones are the Audeze Maxwell Wireless. Even though they're gaming headphones, they have a fairly bland look, and their USB-C connection offers full mic and audio compatibility. Unlike other picks on this list, they come with both a detachable boom mic and an integrated mic, which is handy if you want them to look even more casual. Both mics make your voice sound very clear and natural, and the boom mic also has fantastic noise handling, ensuring you're audible throughout the call, no matter where you are.

    These headphones deliver an extremely neutral sound profile. Whether listening to others on a conference call or enjoying music in your downtime, their sound is accurate and well-balanced from bass to treble. You can also fine-tune them using their companion app's EQ presets. However, they lack ANC. While they do a solid job of reducing ambient chatter and some noise, they don't do much to reduce bass-range noise like rumbling engines. If noise isolation is important to you, consider either of the Bowers & Wilkins options listed above. Additionally, these headphones can be hard to find in stock, which could be a deal-breaker if you don't want to wait for restocks.

    See our review

  6. Best USB-C Earbuds

    The Samsung AKG Type-C are our top pick for USB-C earbuds. They're a great, affordable option for those who need USB-C compatibility, and you can often find them for under $20. While they have a simple design, these buds don't require a 3.5 mm to USB-C adaptor, as is the case with similarly priced alternatives. This results in a lower latency performance that's well-suited to watching movies or playing mobile games. They're also comfortable enough to wear during long workdays and portable enough to bring with you on the go.

    They have a well-balanced default sound profile, with a lively bass response and smooth mid and treble response that'll suit a diverse range of genres. However, they don't have any customization features to help you adjust their sound to your liking. They also do a sub-par job of isolating you from external noise, meaning you'll easily be distracted by the rumble of bus engines or neighboring conversations. Their relatively straightforward control scheme lacks some basic functions, like skipping tracks forward or backward.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Sennheiser Momentum 3 Wireless: The Sennheiser Momentum 3 Wireless are a good alternative to the Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 Wireless if you want mid-range USB-C headphones with a solid ANC performance. However, they aren't as well-built or stable as the Bowers & Wilkins. See our review
  • Beats Studio Pro Wireless: The Beats Studio Pro Wireless are mid-range headphones with a neutral sound out of the box. They aren't as comfortable or as well-built as the Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2 Wireless. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Jun 21, 2024: We added the Beats Solo 4 Wireless as the mid-range pick because it's cheaper than the Bowers & Wilkins Px7 S2, which is now our upper mid-range pick. We also made some small edits for style and checked that all of our picks are in stock at online retailers.

  2. Apr 24, 2024: We've made minor updates to the text and checked that the products are in stock. However, there hasn't been a change to our recommendations.

  3. Feb 28, 2024: The Logitech G333 have been discontinued, so we've replaced them with the Samsung AKG Type-C as our 'Best USB-C Earbuds' pick. We've checked all our other picks to ensure they're still relevant and in-stock.

  4. Jan 04, 2024: We've checked our picks for accuracy and product availability. However, our recommendations have remained the same.

  5. Nov 02, 2023: We've changed this article's text to ensure consistency with our Test Bench 1.6 results, which changed how we measure latency. Our picks have remained the same, though. For more information on this test bench, please see our changelog.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best headphones with a USB-C connection 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.