Being a frequent traveller is a lifestyle for many people today, and it is only wise to make it worth the while. People read novels on board, play video games while on the train or just gaze at the beauty of nature while away.
What happens if you have to make business calls at the windy beach or watch a movie when in a vehicle filled with noisy kids? What do you do if you want to calm your thirsty soul with quality music but your next-door hotel resident cannot stop shouting as he watches football?
Try out quality headphones on the market. There are several specifically designed for travellers, and you cannot go back once you get yourself the one suiting your specifications. Below is a guideline you can use when purchasing headphones, and listed some of the best on sale.
What to Consider When Buying Travel Headphones
I know; the colour and shape should impress you. However, there is more to these gadgets than what meets the eye. Functionality is what makes the experience of how much you shall enjoy using your earpieces. Below are factors to take into consideration;
There are two main types; over-ear and in-ear headphones. In-ear is less bulky and reach the ear canal directly. Over-ear cover the whole ear and usually go over the head. I prefer over-ear headphones, but it is just that; preference. Go with whichever you like.
I consider this the number one factor. Any external distractions are uncalled for when I am absorbed into my videos and music. You do not have to listen to twins crying throughout a 12-hrs flight.
Also, you would not want your phone conversations leaked to the person next to you; hence quality headphones must have excellent noise cancellation. Purchase headsets whose noise cancellation can be modified depending on the surroundings.
Average Battery Life
If you chose wireless headphones, you will need to keep them charged for you to use. You will be happier with an average battery life of more than 20hrs. Most of the best headphones recharge fast and serve you all day.
Wired or Wireless?
Wired earpieces have an auxiliary cable connected to the phone or laptop. It could be detachable or fixed. Such is best for those who move about with their devices even in a room. Wireless headsets connect to devices using Bluetooth mostly. They are convenient and safer to use. Your electronics always stay away from the public eye if you so wish.
Headphones should not weigh more than 0.9lbs if you intend to travel light. In fact, their weight should be almost insignificant to your luggage. If you wanted something heavy, you might as well have carried your home theatre with you.
Most travel headphones cost more than $200. If you consider buying the best quality, the cost is in that range. However, there exist cheaper ones that give you good sound and meet some of your specifications. My advice; save up for the best.
If you try it on and feels a little squeezed on your ears or loose on your head, leave it. You may be sleeping with headphones on. Waking up with a headache is not the paradise you want when travelling. Buy those that have comfy ear cups and probably those that have adjustable lengths too.
6 Top-rated Travel Headphones
|Headphones||Wireless||Weight||Average Battery Life||Available Colours||Price (Amazon)|
|Sony WH-1000MX2||ü||0.61lbs||30hrs||Black, Gold||$249.99|
|Bose QuietComfort 35 II||ü||0.52lbs||20hrs||Black, Silver||$349.00|
|Sennheiser PXC 550 Wireless||ü||0.51lbs||30hrs||Black||$296.95|
|Bose QuietComfort 25||û||195g||12hrs||Black, White||$199.99|
|AKG N60NC Wireless||û||150g||30hrs||Black||$149.95|
|Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2||ü||0.65lbs||24hrs||Black, Tan||$143.21|
1 – Sony WH-1000MX2 – Best Noise Cancelling Headphones
You are unlikely to hear any sound from your external environment unless you tune it to quick attention mode. It auto-adjusts noise cancellation depending on where you are. It is easy to customize the sound using Sony I Headphones Connect App and still keep the music true to its original recording. Other specs include:
- Weighs 0.61lbs
- Average battery life is 30hrs (10-minute charging boosts you for 70 minutes)
- Available in black and gold
- Costs $249.99
These are the best headphones if you want to avoid external noise when on call. You will also not leak any sound to disturb those around you.
2 – Bose QuietComfort 35 II – Best Wireless Travel Headphones
Bose QC 35 II is comfortable to your ears when on a long ride. It has perfect noise cancellation that can be adjusted depending on your environment. To top it all up, it has a dual-microphone system and a volume optimized EQ. Below are its features:
- Has built-in Google-assistant (you receive texts via voice command and manage daily tasks)
- Weighs 0.52lbs
- An average battery life of 20hrs (15-minute charging boosts you for 90minutes)
- Available in black and silver
- Costs $349.00
As much as Bose QC35 II cost me, it is more of a worthy fortune than it costs. The noise cancellation is dope, I can use Siri virtual assistant on it and it is comfy.
3 – Sennheiser PXC 550 Wireless – Best Headphones for Long-hours Travel
With an average battery life of up to 30hrs when fully charged, Sennheiser PCX 550 has proven to be the best headphone when travelling for long hours. You can even go to the beach for a whole day without the battery dying. It recharges in 80 minutes. Other features are:
- It is lightweight (0.51lbs) and sturdy
- Can pair with two devices simultaneously
- Available in black
- Costs $296.95
- Has two well-padded ear cups with a stable fit
I like how efficiently you can customize the sound of music and videos to your fit. You will use voice prompts and touch controls. Despite it being a little leaky at high volume, it is the best outdoor headphone.
4 – Bose QuietComfort 25 – Best Travel Headphones for Apple Devices
Are you into iPads, iPods and iPhones? Well, these headphones are what you are lacking to complete the package. Bose QC 25 has an inline remote that enables you to control music functions and pick calls hand-free with its microphone. It also comes with a compact case to save on packing space. Other amazing features include:
- Weighs 195g
- It is wired (3.5mm) and has lithium polymer battery included
- Has a 56-inch inline remote and microphone cable
- Available in black and white
- Starting price is $199.99
Noise reduction is significant with Bose QC 25 and you get to enjoy deep and powerful sound as you relax or make calls.
5 – AKG N60NC Wireless – Most Powered Wired Headphones
AKG N60NC has the best deal a wired headphone could have. It weighs 150g and is sold with a carrying case. It has a 3D-axis folding mechanism, making it easy to pack. Moreover, it has a 30hr battery life and a detachable cable. For $149.95, you will enjoy crystal-clear sound of music as you travel this chaotic planet. Other features of N60NC are;
- Has 32 ohms impedance
- Its frequency response is 10Hz – 20 kHz
- Uses lithium-ion battery
- Available in black colour
- Has a 2yr warranty in the US
It definitely has great noise cancelling features. It is totally for you if you are seeking the best wired travel headphones at a friendly price.
6 – Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 – Most Budget-friendly Quality Wireless Headphones
For just $143.21, you can purchase over-ear headphones that deliver a blend of rich bass and crisp highs to your ears. It has ANC switch to enable you to minimize ambient noise as you go about your business. Also, The Backbeat Pro 2 can connect to two devices simultaneously; you shall switch between them as you like. Below are its additional features:
- Average battery life is 24hrs
- Has lithium-ion battery
- Weighs 0.65lbs
- Available in black and tan colours
If you like dancing and moving about as you listen to music, you are sorted. You can go a 100m-range from your Class 1 Bluetooth devices without connectivity disruption.
Not many people actually consider taking their time to research on headphones. It is usually just about what fits the ear and has the best sound from their favourite music. Random buyers always keep coming back for another headset – because the randomly purchased ones do not last long.
As the wise person you are, consider buying the best headphones as per the guide. It is worth the value of your money and time. Enjoy your headphones moments pal.