If your current work environment is a bit on the loud side or you find over-the-ear headphones uncomfortable to wear while working out, it might be time that you finally invested in a pair of noise-cancelling earbuds.
These in-ear headphones will fit neatly in your back pocket while letting you let you mute the world around you so you focus on your work or your favourite songs without being interrupted. Because everyone deserves an extra bit of peace and quiet every now and then never hurt anybody.
We’ve sorted through all of our reviews to give you the best pairs of wireless earbuds with top-quality audio performance and active noise cancellation (ANC).
These are our picks for the best noise-cancelling earbuds
Jabra Elite Elite 7 Pro True Wireless Noise-Cancelling Earbuds
If you’re looking for a more affordable option when picking a new pair of earbuds, the Jabra Elite 7 Pro combines high-quality audio with excellent noise cancellation and a crisp microphone. In our review of the lightweight earbuds, we noted that they “easily live up to the expectations that Jabra has set and are earbuds that can stand toe-to-toe with the best of them.”
These earbuds also come with three sets of gel tips, so you can have a more comfortable fit depending on the shape of your ear holes. Jabra’s Sound+ companion app also has a feature called “MyFit”, which will help you adjust your earbuds to improve the seal to get the most out of its ANC feature. The Jabra Elite 7 Pro noise-cancelling earbuds have a battery life of eight hours, with an absurd 30 hours available in the charging case.
The companion app will also let you tinker with the earbud’s equaliser, but the Jabra Elite 7 Pro sound pretty well-balanced even when on the standard out-of-the-box setting. The only thing we weren’t sold on was the middling bass reproduction.
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 3 Noise-Cancelling Earbuds
The Momentum True Wireless 2 were already a pretty excellent pair of noise-cancelling earbuds, but Sennheiser somehow found a way to improve them with the Momentum 3.
Sennheiser has a pretty good rep when it comes to having high-quality headphones and audio, and the Momentum 3 earbuds are no different. Here’s what we had to say in our review of the earbuds:
“The sound quality of the Momentum 3 is absolutely fantastic, while the earbuds are lightweight and comfortable. The combination of the ear tips and fins really go a long way when it comes to finding a good fit. The battery life is a bit on the average side of things, the charging case keeps its playback time afloat well.”
With 7mm dynamic drivers and a fully customisable EQ, the Sennheiser Momentum 3 earbuds sound great. Their playback is crisp and well-balanced, with a very punchy bass.
The earbuds have a seven-hour battery life with ANC on and an additional 21 available via the charging case. It uses adaptive ANC, so the earbuds will monitor your surrounding environment and will automatically adjust the levels of noise cancellation to help prolong battery life. While an interesting feature, this adaptive ANC didn’t fully land with us while we were road-testing the Momentum 3 earbuds. The ANC isn’t terrible or a reason not to buy these earbuds, but it can be inconsistent.
Sony WF-1000XM5 Noise-Cancelling Earbuds
No list of noise-cancelling earbuds would be complete without including something from Sony. Here at Gizmodo Australia, we’ve gone on about how much we love its over-the-ear headphones, and that love extends to Sony’s earbuds too.
In our review of the WF-1000XM5, we were pretty taken by the earbud’s incredible noise-cancellation and sound quality:
“The [WF-1000XM5] are brilliant at cancelling noise, and even better at delivering sound into your eardrums. They have a tonne of features, an app that allows you to completely customise your experience, and they offer head-tracking, 360 audio, etc – I could go on for another 1,000 words about them.”
To achieve that high-quality sound and noise cancellation, the WF-1000XM5 uses the combined power of two new processors for higher-precision performance, along with a dynamic new driver that offers a wide frequency reproduction. It even comes with a great battery life of eight hours, with an additional 16 hours from the charging case.
Where to buy Sony WF-1000XM5 noise-cancelling earbuds: Amazon Australia ($419)
Apple AirPods Pro (2nd Gen)
Depending on who you ask, the first generation of the Apple AirPods Pro is either one of the best or the most over-hyped earbuds ever. If you’re looking for a new pair of wireless earbuds and are worried about paying more for the Apple brand name instead of the quality, take it from us, the AirPods Pro (2nd Gen) live up to that hype.
In Gizmodo Australia’s review of the second generation of AirPod Pro, we praised the improved audio over the previous iteration, with adaptive EQ and Personalised Spatial Audio creating a rich listening experience. If you’re someone who values the sound of silence, its noise-cancelling abilities have also been improved and are now strong enough to cancel out the thunder of a metal gig.
However, Gizmodo Australia’s Managing Editor, Asha Barbaschow, did note that these earbuds are more geared towards people who primarily live within Apple’s walled garden:
“If you’re an iPhone owner in the market for noise-cancelling in-ear buds that sound good, have more smarts than you could imagine and come in at under $400, I couldn’t tell you these wouldn’t be worth your consideration.”
The AirPods Pro (2ndGen) has a battery life of around six hours with ANC on, with a total of up to 30 hours available from the charging case. Just don’t accidentally put them through the wash.
Bose QuietComfort Noise-Cancelling Earbuds
The Bose QuietComfort noise-cancelling earbuds do exactly as it says on the box. With 11 levels of active noise cancellation and a soft silicone design, these earbuds will help you drown out any external noise so you can focus 100% on your music while sitting comfortably in your ears for its 6-hour playback life.
The Bose QuietComfort are easy-to-use earbuds with some of the best audio quality out there. If you want crisp audio that maintains a deep bass, along with a solid user experience, these are the earbuds you want. For the price range, you can’t do much better than these.
Samsung Galaxy Buds2 Pro Noise-Cancelling Earbuds
The Buds2 Pro uses Samsung’s end-to-end 24-bit Hi-Fi processing to create a clear and crisp audio experience, including an immersive 360 Audio feature. Its active noise cancellation uses three high signal-to-noise microphones to detect and reduce ambient sound to improve your listening experience.
The Buds2 Pro has a battery life of around 5 hours with ANC on and up to hours total via the charging case, and can also give you around X minutes of playback with a 15-minute quick charge.
If you prefer over-the-ear headphones instead of earbuds, you can find Gizmodo Australia’s favourite noise-cancelling pairs here.
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