The Best Noise Cancelling Headphones

The purpose of every headphone is to provide top quality sound every time and for every track that is played through it. In this sense, audio quality and sound performance are important aspects for every headphone. Along with reproducing sounds, headphones should also be able to cancel out outside noise so that the user can truly enjoy the musical experience. Hence, noise cancellation also becomes an important feature for headphones.

Headphones offer two kinds of noise cancellation, passive and active cancellation. In passive noise cancellation, the design of the ear cups as well as the padding used in it help to keep some amount of noise away. These materials block sound waves from reaching the ears, and hence, disturbance is reduced. Active noise cancelling headphones, on the other hand,  so everything that passive noise cancelling do, and on top of it, they create an extra level of noise reduction.

They provide this extra layer by creating sound waves that mimic the external sound waves. However, the difference is that they are inverse of external sound waves. So, when there is a crest in external sound wave, it is matched with a trough in the internal sound waves and vice-versa.

As a result, the sound waves cancel out each other, so they do not reach the ears. Due to this advanced mechanism, active noise cancelling provide a greater degree of isolation and allow users to enjoy their music without any distortions. These noise cancellation headphones are offered by different manufacturers to meet the audio needs of their respective customers.

Some of the best noise cancelling headphones are reviewed below:

1. Audio-Technica ATH-M30x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones

Audio-Technica ATH-M30 Professional Studio Monitor Closed-back headphones are of the best noise cancelling headphones that are retail for less than $100. Its rugged design and its high sound quality make it a great value for money. One of the most noticeable aspects of these headphones is that their thick cables that end in a large reinforced plug. These cables are sturdy and do not tangle often. This sturdiness extends to the headphones too, as they are built from good quality materials. Surprisingly, these headphones are lightweight weighing only seven ounces despite its sturdy build. The overall design of these headphones is simple, and yet stylish.

It is completely dark black in colour, and looks plush with its leather padding. The head bands are covered with good padding to ensure that it is easy on the skill while the thick foam and leather cover make it comfortable for the ears. Also, the ear cups swivel on axis that helps to give a good fit for users. At the same time, this swivel mechanism makes it easy to fold down and carry. Along with the design, sound quality is also impressive.

Though these headphones do not have active noise cancellation technology, the large ear cups and its lush padding help to keep out wanted noise. As a result, users are able to listen to the audio with greater detail and clarity. Moreover, these headphones sound clear on every track, and this adds to the listening pleasure for users. Notes are well-balanced, and they sound open despite having a closed back design. The bass is moderate, and sound warm and flat. This aspect can be a little disappointing for those who are looking for booming sounds, but nevertheless, these headphones are a great buy because of their amazing sound balance and quality.

2. Sony MDRZX550BN Bluetooth and Noise Cancelling Headset

Sony MDRZX550BN headphones some of the best available technology such as bluetooth and active noise cancellation to take the pleasure of listening to whole new levels. The design of these headphones is fairly simple and straight. It is a mix of black and sedate with some parts having a matte finish and others, a glossy finish. Despite this simple design, there are many finer aspects that are present in its design. Firstly, it is highly resistant to scratches, which goes to show the high quality material used in making these headphones and the resultant reliability that comes with it. The padding is also at the right amounts to make users feel comfortable without being too heavy.

In fact, they are lightweight and portable as they weigh only a mere 230 grams. Another aspect that makes it easy to carry is that the ear cups swivel inwards and fold down well. Controls for bluetooth are present on the bottom of the ear cups. A simple on/off switch will allow users to move seamlessly between wired and wireless options. A long press on the power button turns on the noise cancelling headphones and almost 8-second push will turn on bluetooth. There is also a noise cancellation button that users can turn on if they are in crowded places to have a greater degree of privacy while listening to their music. Audio performance of these headphones is also excellent as most notes sound warm, rounded and powerful. Bass notes are intense while the lower end notes are clear and audible. Sounds are precise and lively, and this makes it a great pleasure to listen to any genre. In a nutshell, the $100 price tag of these headphones is so worth the money.

3. Bose QuietComfort 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones

Bose is one of the pioneers in noise cancellation technology, and the Bose QuietComfort 15 headphones lives up to the reputation of the company. These headphones look stylish and classy. The outer side of the ear cups are embellished in silver while the remaining parts are black. The padding on head band and ear cups make it super comfortable for users, and at the same time, it is lightweight enough to be portable too. In fact, these headphones are one of the best choices for outdoor use because they are lightweight, and the ear pads put only a small pressure on the ears. A salient feature of these headphones is their noise cancellation technology that is powered by a AAA battery present on the right ear cup.

This battery gives users the choice to turn on active noise cancellation when they are in a high-decibel area, and at other times, the ear cup design ad padding blocks out noise effectively. Either way, users can enjoy music quietly and without any disturbance, hence this name for these headphones. Other than noise cancellation, these headphones also sound great. Bass is balanced and well-managed, and the sounds are airy and enjoyable. There is an emphasis on the low-to mid notes to give better warmth to some notes and to make it sound pleasing. Overall, these noise cancelling headphones are comfortable to wear, keep out noise effectively and sound great. Though they can be on the expensive side, it is definitely a good investment for music lovers.

4. Sennheiser Hd 439 Wired Headphone

Sennheiser is a company well-known for its top sound quality, and Sennheiser HD 439 reflects this brand name’s uniqueness. A noticeable aspect of these headphones is their detachable, something that is not found in most models of Sennheriser. There were two cables that come with these headphones, the first is a standard 1.4 mm cable while the second one is a long 3 feet cable that gives users a wider reach to use their headphones. It also comes with 6.3 mm adapter plug, but no headphone case or bag is included in the accessories.

These headphones are made of light plastic material, so they are super lightweight. At the same time, these headphones are also well-built, something that users should take for granted considering that these headphones are in the $100 price range. Also, Sennheiser HD 439 headphones clamp well on the head without causing discomfort while the velor pads on the ear cup provide a nice touch to the ears, so users do not feel fatigued while using them. In terms of sound quality, these noise cancelling headphones are top class. The bass is excellent without sounding overpowering while the high notes are detailed without being too piercings or shrill. The mids are good too, though they sound a little recessed. To top it, these headphones come with excellent noise cancellation that keeps most noises away. Overall, these headphones are for all round use as they sound good on any genre. The price is definitely reasonable for the sound quality it offers.

5. Bose QuietComfort 25 Noise Cancelling Headphones

BOSE Quiet Comfort 25 headphones are one of the best noise canceling headphones available in the market today. Along with their noise cancellation, the overall design and sound quality make it a must-buy headphones for music lovers. The design of these headphones is sturdy and comfortable. Though there is quite a bit of plastic that has gone into its construction, Bose has struck the right balance between durability and portability.

These headphones look chic with their black color, dual hinges that help to fold and the plush looking ear cups. The accessories that come with these headphones include a cable that has an inline remote and microphone to work with Apple devices, though it works well with Android and Windows smartphones as well. A good-looking case to store these headphones also come along with the package. As for sound quality and noise cancellation, these headphones are excellent.

The Bose Quiet Comfort 25 comes with active noise cancellation technology that can keep out almost any noise, though the downside is the presence of a low humming noise that some users may find irritating. In terms of sound quality, these noise cancelling headphones sound lively and exciting because its notes are clearer and brighter. The bass is tight and clean, without sounding overpowering in any track. The highs are crisp while the mid-range notes sound warm and pleasant. Overall, these headphones are most ideal for those who are looking for top class noise cancellation feature. The sound quality and design is also excellent, to give users a complete package that has everything in it.

6. V-MODA Crossfade LP Over-Ear Noise-Isolating Metal Headphone

V-MODA CROSSFADE LP headphones are steeped in luxury and sound quality, thereby making it one of the best choices for anyone who is looking to listen to simple and clean music. In fact, USA Today has named these headphones as the “2012 Headphones of the Year.” These headphones have won many such award that merit its style and performance. The design is attractive, and is in tune with the reputation that V-MODA has earned.

This company is known for its stylish headphones, and Crossfade LP is no exception. It is an all-black headphone that comes with full-size ear cups and super-cushy leather padding. The head band is also heavily padded to ensure that users feel no fatigue even when they listen for hours on end. Along with these heavy padding, these headphones also give a great fit for any head size and shape. Sound quality and noise isolation are also good on these headphones. The sound quality is balanced and detailed, so users can hear every note with high levels of precision. The high notes are crisp without screeching or piercing eve at high volumes while the mid range notes are warm and pleasing.

The low notes have high clarity that is not seen in many headphones today. Lastly, the bass and treble blend with other sounds well, and do not sound too intense or overpowering. It uses active noise cancelling technology that acts as an effective barrier for noise even in crowded places. The existing padding provide good passive isolation, and it is topped by active noise isolation to give users complete privacy while listening to their favourite tracks. The final verdict –  these headphones offer good sound quality that is encased in a stylish design. Though it could be a little pricey at around $250, it is sure worth the cost. In short, noise cancelling headphones give users the ultimate listening experience as they can stop worrying about external noise intruding into their music. Along with noise cancellation, the above headphones also provide excellent sound quality and a stylish design that is sure to make heads turn. Overall, these headphones are every music lover’s best friend!

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