Best in-ear headphones
As much as we love the sound and bass performance of big, hulking over-ear headphones, there are some situations where they simply tend to cause more problems than they’re worth.
Whether you’re at the gym, traveling, or just hanging out, sometimes you just want something a little more compact, something that won’t weigh you down, or maybe even a pair of headphones that’s sweat-proof. For these specialties, you’re speaking precisely of what in-ear headphones have to offer.
We’re on a mission to provide you with the best in-ear headphones around. As such, we’ve corralled our top-rated reviews so that you can do all your research and make a purchase in one place.
1. Sennheiser Momentum In-Ear
Fully-featured and powerful in-ear headphones
Acoustic design: N/A | Weight: .3 pounds | Cable length: 4.2 feet | Frequency response: 15-22,000Hz | Drivers: N/A | Driver type: N/A | Sensitivity: N/A | Impedance: 18 ohms | Battery life: N/A | Wireless range: N/A | NFC: N/A
With the appealing candy apple detailing, Sennheiser gets you in the door. But once you’re in, you’ll stay for the killer sound quality that comes from the Momentum In-Ear earphones.
These are the among the best deals in the headphones market as it stands today. The company has a version available for each flavor of mobile OS, so everyone can get in on the goodness.
Read the full review: Sennheiser Momentum In-Ear
2. Beyerdynamic iDX 160 iE
Earphones that bleed style and booming sound
Acoustic design: Closed | Weight: .1 pounds | Cable length: 4 feet | Frequency response: 10-25,000Hz | Drivers: N/A | Driver type: N/A | Sensitivity: N/A | Impedance: 47 ohms | Battery life: N/A | Wireless range: N/A | NFC: N/A
In-ear headphones hone in on portability and convenience as main draws. Unfortunately, that sharp focus can result in features like sound performance and design taking a back seat in several in-ear options in the market.
The Beyerdynamic iDX 160 iE buck that trend by providing a stunning balance in its sound quality, feature set and design.
Read the full review: Beyerdynamic iDX 160 iE
3. Jaybird X2
Sporty headphones that are great for casual listeners too
Acoustic design: Closed | Weight: 0.03 pounds | Cable length: 21″ | Frequency response: 20-20000Hz | Drivers: Two 6mm drivers | Sensitivity: 103 +-2dB | Impedance: 16 Ohm | Battery life: 8 hours | Wireless range: 30+ feet |
If you’re looking for a hassle-free set of wireless in-ear headphones, the Jaybird X2 are an easy pick. The price might seem high, but the performance, ease of use and included goodies more than make up for the cost.
Read the full review: Jaybird X2
4. Optoma NuForce BE6
Wireless in-ear headphones with (almost) no compromise
Acoustic design: Closed | Weight: 6 ounces | Cable length: 22 inches | Frequency response: 20Hz–20kHz | Drivers: Two drivers | Driver type: Dynamic | Sensitivity: 95dB | Impedance: 20 Ohm | Battery life: 6 hours | Wireless range: 30+ feet | NFC: No
If you find yourself wanting to explore the world of wireless headphones, this is a nearly perfect place to get started. Although Optoma is more known for its projectors, the BE6 prove that the company is to be taken seriously in the headphone department, too.
These $129 earphones offer a slick, compact design and sound just as good, if not better, than a trusty set of wired headphones. The six hour battery is a little disappointing, but as the only flaw in this package, it’s easy to overlook.
Read the full review: Optoma NuForce BE6
5. Polk Nue Voe
It’s like Warby Parker got into the headphones game
Acoustic design: N/A | Weight: .3 pounds | Cable length: 4 feet | Frequency response: 10Hz-21,500kHz | Drivers: N/A | Driver type: Balanced Armature | Sensitivity: N/A | Impedance: 32 ohms | Battery life: N/A | Wireless range: N/A | NFC: N/A
Not only do these look the part, similar in style to a fancy set of tortoise-patterned eyeglasses, they sound awesome and are comfortable enough to wear all day. These earphones are packed with balanced armature drivers, which ups the mids to increase crispness.
It should be noted that the inline controls built into headphones only properly work with Apple products. You’ll still get the same performance in, say, an Android phone or a Windows phone, but you won’t be able to increase or decrease the volume.
Read the full review: Polk Nue Voe
6. Shure SE215
Excellent midrange in-ear headphones for a bargain
Acoustic design: N/A | Weight: N/A | Cable length: 5.3 feet | Frequency response: 22Hz-17,500kHz | Drivers: N/A | Driver type: Dynamic | Sensitivity: N/A | Impedance: 20 ohms | Battery life: N/A | Wireless range: N/A | NFC: N/A
If excellent noise isolation, comfort and stellar sound performance are of interest to you, consider the Shure SE215.
The headphones come in a cool translucent, space grey color and among its many good traits, the best of all is that you can snag the Shure SE215 for under one hundred bucks.
Read the full review: Shure SE215
7. Bose FreeStyle
Eye-catching with great audio quality and an attractive price
Acoustic design: N/A | Weight: .3 pounds | Cable length: 3.7 feet | Frequency response: N/A | Drivers: N/A | Driver type: N/A | Sensitivity: N/A | Impedance: N/A | Battery life: N/A | Wireless range: N/A | NFC: N/A
Specifically targeted to gym-goers, the FreeStyle headphones are stocked with helpful features to help you get the most out of your music during a workout (when you need it the most). It offers a comfy and stable fit and better yet, it’s moisture-resistant design means the FreeStyle can kick it with you through your whole workout, inside or out. The only major downside is that the inline controls are only compatible with iOS.
Read the full review: Bose FreeStyle
8. Sony XBA-H1
In-ear headphones with style and bravado
Acoustic design: Closed | Weight: N/A | Cable length: 3.9 feet | Frequency response: 5-25,000Hz | Drivers: N/A | Driver type: Hybrid | Sensitivity: 105 dB/mW | Impedance: 40 ohms | Battery life: N/A | Wireless range: N/A | NFC: N/A
If you’re in the market for a set of in-ear headphones with pizzazz, the Sony XBA-H1 will be right up your alley. Whether your preference leans toward a more sporty look, or one that is simple, both audiences are served well here.
The hybrid driver unit packs in balanced armature and dynamic designs into one unit, bringing the very best that both have to offer to your ears. This results in booming bass, highs that shine and response that makes your music sound more punchy than ever.
Read the full review: Sony XBA-H1
9. RHA T10i
Premium earphones for any taste
Acoustic design: Closed | Weight: .09 pounds | Cable length: 4.4 feet | Frequency response: 16-40,000Hz | Drivers: N/A | Driver type: Dynamic | Sensitivity: 100 dB/mW | Impedance: 16 ohms | Battery life: N/A | Wireless range: N/A | NFC: N/A
The sound quality is incredible, thanks to the snug seal created when the headphones are stuck in your ear. The bass is also robust for such small earphones.
The RHA T10i look slick with a metal finish around the drivers and around the cable as well. They also come with several replacement tips if the defaults don’t fit your ear canal.
Read the full review: RHA T10i
Days of mobile on the cheap are over: Forrester