What’s Noise Cancellation?
What’s ACTIVE Noise Cancellation?
What’s PASSIVE Noise Cancellation?
The following video demonstrates the effect of ‘Noise Cancellation’ and the answers to above 3 questions very well! Watch it please, we HIGHLY recommend it!
The TOP 20 Noise Cancelling Headphones is made up of the following 7 categories
- TOP 3 Active Noise Cancellation Headphones
- Top 3 BUDGET-friendly ACTIVE Noise Cancelling Headphones
- Top 3 BUDGET-friendly PASSIVE Noise Cancelling Headphones
- Top 2 Bluetooth Noise Cancelling Headphones
- Top 4 Noise Cancelling Earbuds
- Top 4 Budget In-Ear Noise Cancelling Earbuds
- Best In-Ear Bluetooth Noise Cancelling Earbuds
#1. Bose® QuietComfort® 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling® Headphones
There are mainly 2 criteria we (and others) use when ranking noise cancelling headphones.
What else do we like about ‘em?
What are the CONS?
September 2014 UPDATE
A newer model has been released. Already started receiving awesome reviews. Check out the new Bose QuietComfort 25 Headphones here…
#2. PSB M4U 2 Active Noise-Cancelling Headphones
These are ranked #2 because…
#3. Harman Kardon NC Premium Over-Ear Noise Cancelling Headphones
These are our Most wallet friendly headphones with ACTIVE Noise Cancellation. Note that this is NOT PASSIVE Cancellation. Passive cancellation (noise isolation is a better word) simply cuts out the external sounds thanks to the tight fit of the earcups. In contrast, with active noise cancelling, microphones on the headphones identify various noises in your surroundings and the noise-cancelling circuitry inside the headphones produces a counteracting signal (near exact opposite wavelength). The result? Environmental noise is cancelled by the counteracting noise produced by the headphones –> Noise Cancellation!
Because of this complex NC circuitry, ACTIVE NC headphones are almost always MORE expensive than the PASSIVE NC headphones. This is why they don’t come cheap! This is why these NC headphones, even though we have categorized them as budget friendly, are NOT REALLY CHEAP.
|Audio-Technica ATH-ANC7B QuietPoint Active Noise-Cancelling Closed-Back Headphones||SOUL by Ludacris SL300WB High Definition Noise Canceling Headphones (Black/White)||Sony MDR-NC200D Digital Noise-Canceling Headphones|
Passive Noise Cancellation is generally NOT as good as ACTIVE Noise cancellation. It shouldn’t be a surprise because it is merely due to the passive ‘sealing effect’ of the earcups. The following headphones are pretty good at noise-isolation.
|Sony MDRZX100/BLK ZX Series Stereo Headphones||Audio-Technica ATH-M30 Professional Studio Monitor Closed-back Dynamic Stereo Headphones||V-MODA Crossfade LP Over-Ear Noise-Isolating Metal Headphone (Phantom Chrome)|
|These are extremely cheap at around $15-20 and have a decent amount of noise isolation. However, don’t expect these to cancel the ambient noises at a level anywhere near the PSP M4U 2s, the Bose QC15s, the HK NC Premiums or even the Audio-Technica ATH-ANC7B, Ludacris SL300WB or Sony MDR-NC200D||Again, not made to be a noise cancelling, but blocks out a decent amount of external noises and has EXCELLENT audio quality||Of these 3, probably the best passive noise-cancellation comes these V-MODAs!|
How do the Noise Cancelling In-Ear Headphones compare to NC Over-the-ear headphones?
|These are undoubtedly the BEST in-ear NC headphones for sound quality, superb noise cancelling and comfort Bose QuietComfort 20i Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones Of the in-ear NC headphones, the Bose QuietComfort 20 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones are in a class of its own. They’re noise-cancelling is SUPERB, almost as good as those high-end over-the-ear headphones. However, they’re awfully expensive for a pair of in-ear earbuds. Audio quality is not as good as that of the over-the ear NC headphones, but as good or better than other in-ear NC headphones.||Audio Technica ATH-ANC23 QuietPoint Active Noise-Cancelling In-Ear Headphones|
|Klipsch IMAGE S4 In-Ear Enhanced Bass Noise-Isolating Headphones (Black)||Sony MDRNC13 Noise-Canceling Headphones|
|This is very cheap. The only reason it’s marketed as noise-cancelling (it’s NOT REAL noise-cancellation, even though the product details say so) is because of the ‘noise-reducing fit’. Because of the ‘good fit’ with the ear canal, it doesn’t let music out or ambient noises in!
Panasonic RPHJE120K In-Ear Headphone
|Digital Silence DS-101A Stereo Analogue Ambient Noise Cancelling Headset with Microphone – Black|
|MEElectronics Sport-Fi M6 Noise-Isolating In-Ear Headphones with Memory Wire (Black)||Panasonic RP-HC55-S Noise-Cancelling Earbud Headphones (Silver)|
Phiaton PS 210 BTNC Bluetooth 3.0 Active Noise Cancelling Stereo Earphones with Mic