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Top 10 Best Headphones in 2021

The best kind of headphones offer great audio performance and perpetual comfort. If you are looking for one, then keep on reading. Experts at OwlRatings’ researched extensively and found these top 10 headphones that you can buy in 2021.

Reasons to look for a good headphone

Headphones play a huge role in our lives, especially since we have adapted to the ‘online’ way of doing things. Be it gaming, online school, zoom meetings, or home workout sessions, if you have headphones that provide an immersive sound stage, feel comfortable to wear, and are flexible, you can do about anything that you want.

But how do you choose the perfect ones? Is there some sort of criteria? Keep scrolling and you will find the answers! In this article, you will find not only our in-depth reviews about each product but also a comprehensive buying guide that will answer all of your queries. So let us begin!

Best overall

PeohZarr WGYP-063 headphone

PeohZarr WGYP-063 headphone

The headphones are adjustable and the ear cushions feel light on the ears which makes them one of the most comfortable headphones to wear for longer hours.

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PeohZarr’s On-Ear Headphones are equipped with a microphone and a high-definition 40mm driver, and they are designed to provide an immersive listening experience. These give you the best sound quality that you can get in the market and the best part is that they can cancel out all the ambient noises!

They are also extremely comfortable to wear. The earcups and the headband are padded and they fit snuggly over the head without exerting extra pressure. The unit is made from various materials such as plastic, metal, and soft padding. It does feel very durable and is easy to clean. Lastly, they are available in various colors so you can easily find one that matches your aesthetics.

Best for ps5

Zihnic wh-816 headphone

Zihnic wh-816 headphone

The noise-reducing technology really cancels out all of the background and ambient noises.

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Zihnic’s Wireless Over-the-Ear Headphones feature some of the best features that one can ask for, especially if you own a pS5. The sound quality definitely surpasses the satisfaction threshold. Not only does it produce clear audio but it also makes sure that there is no distortion or lag. Furthermore, it has one of the best noise-canceling properties we have ever seen in such headphones!

The memory foam leather earbuds and the sleek headband are comfortable and you can probably wear them for long hours without feeling tired. The best thing is that you have wireless and wired options for using the headphones. So, if the battery ever runs out, you can simply plug in the wire and have an immersive sound experience 24/7! Moreover, the unit also sports a long battery life (14 hours), dual modes, Bluetooth connectivity, and seven unique color choices.

Best for pc

Audio-Technica ATH-M20X headphone

Audio-Technica ATH-M20X headphone

These are perfect for PC use mainly because they have a 3-meter-long properly insulated cord that allows you the flexibility to move around when the headphones are plugged in.

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Audio-Technica’s ATH-M20X headphones are perfect for anyone who is looking for a long-wired device that offers a satisfactory sound-stage with remarkable noise cancellation. The unit has a modern design that is comfortable to wear. Unfortunately, the material can deteriorate after a few years due to the stress of cushioning and secretions of body oils but the positive side is that you can easily get the earmuffs replaced.

With 40mm drivers, the headphones deliver impressive clarity in audio playback. After playing multiple songs, we noticed that the instruments and percussions were more prominent than the bass. So, if you want headphones for audiobooks, zoom meetings, or casual listening, these are the best. Although, these might not be the most ideal gadget for people who love bass-boosted music.

Best premium

Sennheiser HD280PRO headphone

Sennheiser HD280PRO headphone

These are one of the best headphones when it comes to bass delivery.

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Sennheiser’s HD280Pro is specifically made for people who enjoy bass-boosted music. These sturdy headphones offer a good bass which makes the audio sound clear, vibrant, and lively. The low-frequency extension is 10 Hz which is pretty good! Moreover, the treble performance is quite impressive as well.

The unit does cancel out major noises from the background. Although, you might still be able to hear low-frequency noises such as the rumbles of airplanes and bus engines. We liked that the gadget is made from sturdy and robust materials. However, we do think they are a bit bulkier than average. So, these might become uncomfortable if used for extended hours continuously.

Best wireless

JBL TUNE 500BT headphone

JBL TUNE 500BT headphone

It has the best playback time ever! The unit offers 16 hours of listening time from only one charge.

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Offering crisp audio quality, lightweight design, an efficient microphone, and instant Bluetooth connectivity are some of the reasons why we adore this particular headset so much! JBL’s TUNE 500BT are wireless headphones that produce a satisfying audio experience for any kind of audio. The playback contains more bass and trebles which is perfect for upbeat music.

The unit also has noise cancellation properties but unfortunately, they do not remove all of the ambient noises; you might still be able to hear some. On the other hand, the earmuffs are made from PU leather which makes them comfortable to wear. The cups fit snuggly over your heads and the headband does not add any additional stress. It remains firmly over your head even if you are running so you can definetely use these for your workout sessions.

Best affordable

Sony MDR-ZX110 headphone

Sony MDR-ZX110 headphone

These headphones are some of the best low-price headphones that you can find in the market.

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If you are looking for a low-price headphone that offers a good audio experience and has a comfortable design, then Sony MDR-ZX110 is the best option. The headphones are available in three distinct colors and has a long cord. It possesses neodymium drivers which give the audio an extra ‘oomph’; it makes the audio punchy, vibrant, and immersive.

The wide frequency response is between 12 to 22000 kHz so you will be getting a bass-boosted playback that is rich and warm and you will also be able to listen to all of the low frequency sounds. Moreover, it has noise-canceling properties as well and prevents leakage too. So, you can use these in the library or office settings. Lastly, it has a full-plastic built which does make us think that it won’t last for too long. Although, the headphones are comfortable to wear.

Best for kids

Noot Products K11 headphone

Noot Products K11 headphone

The 5 feet long nylon braided cord can triumph through children twisting, chewing, or yanking it.

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Noot K11 headphones have soft padded ear cuffs and an adjustable headband so that everyone can find their perfect fit. It is also very lightweight in design which makes it ideal for small children. It is made from durable materials that ensure that the unit can survive if kids twist and yank the wire.

The audio quality is also acceptable for children. These aren’t the headphones an audiophile will love but if you are looking for a sleek and durable gadget that your child can use for an online school or youtube videos, then these are perfect. Although, the best feature is its nylon fabric clad cord that keeps the wires safe and tangle-free. No matter how much your child yanks the cable, or even chews on it, it will not get damaged.

Best noise cancelling

Bose QuietComfort 35 II headphone

Bose QuietComfort 35 II headphone

These are one of the best headphones to buy if your main purpose is to attend calls and meetings. The sound is crisp and clear and it has excellent noise cancellation.

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Bose QC 35 II Wireless Headphones provide you with three levels of noise cancellation, Bluetooth connection, noise-rejecting dual-microphone, and 16 hours of playback time! Also, these are compatible with almost all of the smart devices and gives you uninterrupted, distortion-less, and lag-free audio quality consistently!

The overall quality of the music seemed pretty good. You could hear the highs, mids, and lows perfectly but when we experimented with the audio quality, we noticed that the bass-boosted songs did not sound as dynamic as they should. Besides this, the audio quality is phenomenal. The microphone works well and the quality of voices in calls and meetings are as clear as a day! Furthermore, the headphones have a slim yet comfortable design with large earcups that engulf the entire ear.

Best for gaming

EKSA E900 Gaming headphone

EKSA E900 Gaming headphone

It offers a pleasant, loud, and clear audio response, and the microphones deliver your voice just as clearly as well.

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EKSA E900 Gaming Headphones are ideal for gaming sessions. It produces loud, pleasant, and clear audio. It is so precise that you can even hear the footsteps of other characters approaching you in the games (Call of Duty, PUBG, etc). The microphone on the other hand works just as flawlessly. The best part is that you can remove the microphones if you do not need them!

These wireless headphones are compatible with PlayStation, Nintendo, Xbox One Controller, PSP, 3DS, Tablet, iMac, and many smart gaming devices. They can also easily connect to your smartphone. Moreover, the quality of the metal frame is just as impressive as the rest of the unit. It is sturdy and protects the earcups optimally. The headband also feels sturdy yet soft over the head.

Best for zoom meetings

Panasonic RP-HT161M headphone

Panasonic RP-HT161M headphone

If you are on a budget and are prone to breaking headphones, these are of good value.

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If you are looking for low-priced wired headphones that can be used to attend calls and online meetings, then Panasonic RP-HT161 is your best choice. The headphones deliver your voice efficiently and without any lag and receives all sound signals just as efficiently. The audio quality is crisp, clear, and loud.

Unfortunately, we do not think these headphones can be used for upbeat music. The bass, high-frequency range, and mid-range do not seem to compete with each other. Despite this flaw, they do not sound too bad if you are using them casually. Moreover, we liked the padded earcups but the headband should have been thicker since it would enhance its durability.

What’s important when choosing a headphone

Sound quality

For sound quality, you need to check if the unit you have chosen has a wide frequency response or not. Wide frequency response means that you can hear sounds that have a frequency as low as 20 Hz and as much as 20,000 Hz.

The size of the driver also indicates the kind of sound quality. In simple words, the larger the driver, the better the quality of the bass and the loudness of the headphones. So, if you love upbeat and bass-boosted music, then look for headphones with larger drivers. Typically, headphones have a driver between the range of 20mm-50mm.

Durability

Check the materials the unit is made up of. Most headphones are either made from plastic or PU leather with metal counterparts. It is always better to buy headphones that have a padded headband and earmuffs. Not only are they comfortable but they also provide extra protection in case you drop your headphones accidentally.

If you are thinking of buying wired headphones then you need to also check whether the chord of the headphones has an additional coating as the noot K11 Stereo Headphones have. These ones have nylon fabric clad fabric which keeps the headphones safe even if they are yanked, twisted, or even chewed on! So, try to look for headphones that offer extra protection to the chord so it does not get damaged.

Comfort

Check whether the headphones fit snuggly over your head. You do not want headphones that slip down your head once you start walking or running. Also, check the size as well as the softness of the earmuffs and the headband. You need to check if the earmuffs cover the entirety of your ear and whether the headband presses against your head or not.

Also, check whether the headband is adjustable or not. Though most headphones have some adjustability feature, you must always check this aspect of the unit whenever you buy them because this will ensure whether you or whoever you are buying it from, get the perfect fit each time.

Price

A common misconception among most people is that a higher price means a better product. This is wrong! You should always assess products based on their features rather than the price. As you might have noticed in the above reviews, we have tried to include as many low-price headphones as we can so we can help people who have a budget constraint have the best possible audio experience without compromising on any feature.

Wired or wireless

Another important aspect to evaluate is whether you want to buy wireless or wired headphones. Though most people just buy the kind they find most convenient, you must know the benefits and drawbacks of both.

Wired headphones:

AdvantagesDisadvantages 
Usually less expensive than wireless Most modern phones are ditching the input audio jack
Offer better sound quality since they receive an analog signal which handles more data than BluetoothThe cable can get in the way and it gets damaged easily 
You do not need to ever charge them! 

Wireless headphones:

AdvantagesDisadvantages 
You can move around without keeping the cable into considerationYou need to charge them at regular intervals
There are many added features in these (Example: connect to virtual assistant)Can be expensive 
Can connect to any Bluetooth-enabled device 

As you can see, both have their fair share of flaws. So, choose the one which seems more convenient and comfortable for you. However, if you want the best of both worlds, try finding headphones with a detachable cord, as Zihnic Wireless Over-the-ear Headphones have.

FAQ

What is the good sound quality?

There are many ways that you can judge the sound quality of headphones or really any device. Two of the most effective ways is to check for low distortion and wide frequency response.

Low Distortion:
Distortion is any type of deviation in an audio signal. In simple words, it is sound/noise that alters any audio. So, if you hear any type of fuzziness, growling, or gritting in the audio, that is called distortion. As it’s obvious, low distortion means that there aren’t any disruptions in the audio you’re playing on the headphones.

Wide Frequency Response:
It is the range of the frequencies, or simply put, musical tones that the headphones reproduce.  It means how well and if a specific audio component is producing all the audible musical tones and if there is any change in the signal during production.

One way to check if the headphones you have chosen have the perfect frequency response, try playing low-frequency music on the unit and check how well the headphones reproduce the tones.

What are the effects of wearing headphones?

Constantly wearing earphones or headphones can damage your eardrums, especially if you are listening at a very loud volume. So, try to keep the volume level within the optimal range (which is mostly indicated by many phones). Generally, any noise which is over 90 decibels is bad for your hearing.

However, this depends on how long and how frequently you are exposed to them. Thus, try to limit the time you spend listening to music, gaming, or attending calls via headphones and you are good to go!

Which is worse headphones or earphones?

Both have their own advantages and disadvantages. People usually prefer over-the-ear headphones over earbuds because they are more comfortable to wear. Instead of inserting two silicone earplugs inside your ear canal, you can simply snap the headphones over your ear and the padded ear muffs surround your ear comfortably.

Furthermore, headphones provide a buffering space between your ear canal and the music whereas, with earbuds, you are directly funneling the music inside your ear canal. Although, at the end of the day, people chose the type of headphones based on personal preference and what seems comfortable to them.

Is higher Hz better sound?

The simple answer to the question is No, higher Hz does not mean better sound. Let’s first understand what ‘Hz’ means. Herts (Hz) is the measurement of the cycles per second. A higher Hz means that the audio has a higher frequency and vice versa. Low-frequency sounds usually have around 500 Hz or less whereas high-frequency sounds have 2000Hz or more.

Higher frequency means that the audio has a higher pitch or a high note. Bass frequencies that are below 20Hz are usually felt more than heard, whereas treble frequencies which are over20,000 Hz might not even be audible to us. So, no, higher Hz (which means higher frequency) does not mean better sound quality.

Final verdict

If you listen to music, watch movies, or use PS5, Xbox, or even PC, you know the importance of finding the right kind of headgear for your daily use. The best headphones are the ones that are comfortable to wear and do not cause a headache even if you are wearing them for extended periods. And of course, they need to provide the best quality of audio that is humanly possible.

To find the best one for yourself, there are a few things that you need to keep in your mind while shopping such as the sound quality, comfort, and durability. You need to assess these three aspects as thoroughly as possible before making a final decision. This will help you to make a sound choice which will be beneficial in the long run.

Hope this article proved to be a fruitful read. Good luck finding the perfect headphones for yourself!

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