Headphones

We’ll find the best headphones for you.

Shot of a young woman using a smartphone and headphones on the sofa at home.

Hearing is subjective, so our headphones testing is conducted by a panel of 5 experts with a variety of ages and musical tastes.

We've tested 146 headphones.

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Overall score breakdown

Overall score is based on:

Active noise-cancelling models

Sound (50%)
Comfort (30%)
Noise-cancelling (10%)
Durability (10%)

Non-noise-cancelling models

Sound (60%)
Comfort (30%)
Durability (10%)

About our test

For our test, we get 5 expert testers to wear each pair of headphones for an extended period while listening to a range of content from various audio sources.

Each set’s sound quality was also tested using a reference ear, a device with an acoustic input impedance resembling that of an average human ear.

This was also done for noise-cancelling if applicable. The scores from the testers and reference ear are then averaged into the final sound quality score.

The same 5 testers allocate the comfort score. Finding the headphone type that’s most comfortable for you can take time, because everyone’s ears are different.

Earbuds often come with different-sized rubber nibs to help fit into your ear. Over-ear headphones tend to be bigger and heavier, so you may need to adjust the headband to get the fit right.

To test durability we stress test the headphones focusing on the joint between the cable and the speaker housing. We also assess the construction materials and any areas of obvious concern.

Stylish blue headphones on multi colored / duo tone background lighting.

Headphones guide

Before you buy, check out our buying guide.

Read the guide