The Best Wireless Headphones

Posted on 11 May 2022

After 22 hours of research, analysing 67 models and testing 23 of them, we have determined that the best wireless headphones nowadays are the Soundcore Liberty 3 Pro, due to their excellent price-quality ratio.

This comparison is certified 100% impartial and follows our selection process.

Our choice, Best mid-range

Soundcore Liberty 3 Pro

Without any major flaws, these headphones are at the top of the podium because they manage to combine comfort, good sound and endurance, while offering more advanced customisation and connection options.

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At the end of this test, they perfectly meet our expectations and more. We particularly liked the comfortable design, the good fit, the responsiveness of the controls, their many customisation options, the good sound quality, the interesting call quality and the overall good endurance. Moreover, they have a multipoint connection and the case is very compact. In our opinion, this is one of the best models on the market because it is complete and adapts to all users’ needs.

 

 

Best budget

Jabra Elite 3

Simplicity and efficiency are probably the two words that best sum up these affordable headphones. Although they lack options, they are durable and comfortable for ears.

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Overall, they offer a good price-quality ratio. They are simplistic but they do the job well because they manage to combine comfort, ease of use, endurance and good sound quality. Moreover, they support the AptX format and their casing is compact. In our opinion, some additional functions could be welcome (sound control, manual equaliser…) but we can still be satisfied with this product, especially if you just listen to music all day long. On the other hand, our tests have shown that the quality of the calls can be improved.

 

Best high-end

Sony WF-1000XM4

Another big hit from Sony, with another success in sound control, audio quality and endurance. They are aimed at the demanding audiophile.

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With their impeccable sound quality, rich in bass and instrumentality, they are truly red-hot in the wireless headphones market. During our test, we were particularly impressed by their sound control (considered the best in the business), good call quality and convincing durability. These few Sony improvements do come at a cost, and the size of the earbuds may deter some buyers, but they are a strong contender for all other models.

 

Mid-range alternative

Jabra Elite 75t

Relatively versatile, these headphones are suitable for both sportsmen and women who listen to their music on a daily basis, both in the office and while on movement. Their advantage is that they are good in all areas.

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These headphones, an evolution of the Elite 65t series, have everything you’d expect from a model of this price: resistance to outdoor environments, more than decent battery life, stable connection and quality sound… That’s why they got a very good score in our tests. All you have to do is enjoy your listening in comfort. Their recent price drop makes them even more interesting, but their lower endurance puts them in second place. A new version is on the market, but unfortunately it faces very tough competition against high-end models.

 

High-end alternative

Apple AirPods Pro

These are the first headphones from the Apple brand that can claim high audio quality. They are perfectly integrated into the Apple ecosystem and will delight Apple fans.

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These new Apple headphones will delight users with their real sound quality and effective active sound control. However, they are so well integrated into the brand’s system that their compatibility with other systems is impaired. Another negative point is their below-average battery life.

 

Our selection

Our choice, Best mid-rangeBest budgetBest high-endMid-range alternativeHigh-end alternative
Soundcore Liberty 3 ProJabra Elite 3Sony WF-1000XM4Jabra Elite 75TApple AirPods Pro
Soundcore Liberty 3 ProJabra Elite 3Sony WF-1000XM4Jabra Elite 75tApple AirPods Pro
Without any major flaws, these headphones are at the top of the podium because they manage to combine comfort, good sound and endurance, while offering more advanced customisation and connection options.Simplicity and efficiency are probably the two words that best sum up these affordable headphones. Although they lack options, they are durable and comfortable for ears.Another big hit from Sony, with another success in sound control, audio quality and endurance. They are aimed at the demanding audiophile.Relatively versatile, these headphones are suitable for both sportsmen and women who listen to their music on a daily basis, both in the office and while on movement. Their advantage is that they are good in all areasThese are the first headphones from the Apple brand that can claim high audio quality. They are perfectly integrated into the Apple ecosystem and will delight Apple fans.
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Honorable mentions

Sennheiser CX True Wireless (£88,99 upon publication): fewer features in aid of endurance, hearing quality and comfort. These headphones are simple but effective, with complete controls and customisable sound. Despite their size, they fit well in the ears and have a stable connection. However, some latencies, the lack of some options and the quality of calls in noisy environments are points on which the German manufacturer must still improve.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 (£99 upon publication): perfect for an urban use and for Samsung users. With their elegant, discreet and comfortable design, they are very appealing, especially when combined with good sound quality and overall effective sound control. The lack of support and the touch control are the two main criticisms of this model. As a result, we do not recommend them for sports or video games. And if you have a Samsung smartphone, it is even better to enjoy all its features.

Jabra Elite 85t (£128,08 upon publication): a new competitor enters the arena. A revised version of the Elite 75t, this new model further improves all its performances in order to tease the top of the range references. We can say that it is a winning bet for Jabra, which succeeds in offering a model that is competitive in all aspects, but unfortunately still too short compared to the masters of this range (Sony and Apple).

 

 

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How to choose your wireless headphones?

Wireless headphones have become popular and we are faced with a massive influx of new models every week. With so many pairs of earbuds, it’s hard to find the perfect wireless headphones.

To help you in your search, we have determined the necessary criteria to consider before purchasing this product.

  • Quality of the sound: this includes the quality of the bass, treble, etc. In general, the goal is to reproduce the sound as faithfully as possible, while at the same time aiming for a fairly dynamic rendering, for a greater listening pleasure. In some cases, an equaliser can be used to balance the sounds or modify their colour (more bassy, for example). As a bonus, support for codecs such as AAC or aptX allows you to enjoy high-quality audio, which is more relevant to audiophiles.
Soundcore Liberty 3 Pro
Sound quality is the first thing you should look for when buying headphones. | Source: Selectos
  • Soundproofing: this can be of two kinds, active or passive. Passive is determined by the earpiece itself, while active requires a software intervention: microphones pick up the sound around you and send a negative frequency (equivalent to that sound) in response to cancel it out. It is the same principle as 1 + (-1) = 0.
  • Comfort: this is important to ensure that you get the most out of your headphones over long periods of listening. Generally, brands offer different sizes of ear cushions or several silicone tips to provide the best ergonomics possible and to adapt the set to your morphology. Choosing the right ear tip also has an impact on the sound quality, as it provides better isolation from external sounds.
1more Confobuds Pro
Do not hesitate to try out different tips to ensure an optimal comfort. | Source: Selectos
  • Fit: this criterion implies that your headphones should fit as snugly as possible to your ear to minimise the risk of loss. This is particularly important for sportsmen and women. Some models offer a function to find the headphones with a sound signal if necessary.
  • Resistance: “IP” stands for “Ingress Protection”, in other words, it is the protection index that evaluates the resistance to solid or liquid elements (such as sweat, water or dust). The IP is made up of two numbers: one that indicates the level of protection against solid particles such as sand and dust (from 0 to 6) and a second that communicates the resistance to water and therefore to sweat (from 0 to 9).
Jabra Elite 3
The fit of your headphones should be good, especially if you use them for sports. | Source: Selectos
  • Connection quality: this is determined by the type of connection your equipment has. Generally, this is Bluetooth 5.0, which guarantees minimal latency when it is well optimised. Other factors are the stability of the link with your device and the range of use, which should be the best possible to avoid unexpected dropouts. Some models may offer you a choice between optimising for audio quality or stability, which will usually be related to your usage.
  • Battery life: wireless means using a battery. The average battery life of these headphones is around 5 hours. Many manufacturers provide a charging case that allows you to store and carry your headphones while charging them. With this, it is usually possible to use them for about 20 hours without having to use a power outlet.
Google Pixel Buds A
Most wireless headphones models now come with a charging case. | Source: Selectos
  • Controls: some manufacturers favour touch controls, but they can be difficult to use. Physical buttons may be less elegant, but they are more convenient when your hands are sweaty or if it is raining, and they prevent accidental presses when you put the headphones back on. The controls allow you to manage all sorts of actions without the smartphone, and they can sometimes even be customised from the app.
  • Microphone quality: microphones are used to make telephone calls. Their ability to reduce wind noise, manage sibilance and avoid saturation while reproducing voices fairly influences the quality of calls in quiet environments as well as in noisy ones.
Sennheiser CX True Wireless
The controls allow all kinds of actions to be managed without the smartphone. | Source: Selectos

 

Translated by Aylin Akturk 

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