The 8 Best Headphones Under $100 to Buy in 2018

Crank up the volume and rock out to your favorite tunes

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The Rundown

  • Best Overall: Sennheiser HD280PRO at Amazon, "All the features you could want in a pair of headphones, including high-quality audio, comfort and the ability to drown out ambient sounds."
  • Best Budget: Panasonic RP-HJE120 at Amazon, "Fit snugly in your ear using an ErgoFit technology and are soft enough to conform to the contours of your ears."
  • Best Design: SIVGO SV005 at Amazon, "Features a solid wood design around the earcups instead of the standard plastic or metal you’d find in just about every other device."
  • Best Earbuds: 1MORE Triple Driver at Amazon, "Ship with angled tips to ensure a snug fit and come in nine sizes, so you can decide which one has the best fit."
  • Best Dual-Use: Mpow 059 at Amazon, "Last up to 20 hours on a single charge. And in case you want to talk to friends, a built-in mic allows for hands-free calling."
  • Best Sound: Sony MDRXB800 at Amazon, "Outstanding audio quality with power, deep bass and solid performance at the mids and highs."
  • Best Battery: Cowin E7 at Amazon, "Can last a whopping 30 hours on a single charge during continuous Bluetooth playback."
  • Best for Ease of Use: iDeaUSA Headphones at Amazon, "Able to connect to devices up to 33 feet away and can last a whopping 25 hours on a single charge."

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Sennheiser HD280PRO

Sennheiser’s HD280PRO offers the best balance of all the features you could want in a pair of headphones, including high-quality audio, comfort and the ability to drown out ambient sounds.

The Sennheiser over-the-ear headphones are designed with big, plush earcups and two pads at the top that aim at improving comfort throughout the day. These are wired headphones, however, so if you’re on the lookout for a wireless variety, you’ll need to turn elsewhere. That said, the headphones’ cord measures a whopping 9.8 feet, so you won’t need to worry too much about tangling.

Sennheiser’s headphones are designed for professional DJs first, so you’ll find their audio quality, featuring stereo sound and accurate linear sound production, to be among the best on the market.

Senneheiser’s HD280PRO headphones don’t come with active noise-canceling features that will work behind the scenes to drown out ambient noise. They do, however, feature a modular design and construction that’s aimed at dramatically reducing ambient noise.

If it’s mobility you’re most concerned about, Sennheiser has you covered there, too. Its HD280PRO headphones have folding and rotating earcups and weigh just 1.3 pounds, making them easy to bring along wherever you go.

Want to take a look at some other options? See our guide to the best Sennheiser headphones

Best Budget: Panasonic RP-HJE120

The affordable Panasonic RP-HJE120 earbuds fit snugly in your ear using an ErgoFit technology and are soft enough to conform to the contours of your ears. Better yet, the earbuds come with three different earpads in small, medium or large, so you can ensure a proper fit.

Panasonic’s RP-HJE120 won’t offer the best sound on the market​ but should be capable of getting loud enough for you to at least enjoy the music you’re listening to. And since they’re so small, you can throw them into a bag and pull them out throughout the day whenever you’re ready to listen to some tracks.

The headphones are of the wired variety and come with a 3.6-foot cord. For customization’s sake, you can choose from nine different color options, including blue, orange and red, to match your style and outfit.

Best Design: SIVGO SV005

When it’s time to strap on headphones that will get people to pay attention and ask where you found what you’re wearing, the SIVGO SV005 is a great place to start.

The headphones are large, over-the-ear options that come with 50mm dynamic drivers and five diaphragms to play what the company calls “exceptional audio quality.” It also comes with a headset cable that features remote controls and a microphone when you’re listening to music on a smartphone or media player, as well as a stereo cable for home audio setups.

SIVGO’s SV005 features a solid wood design around the earcups instead of the standard plastic or metal you’d find in just about every other device on the market. The earpads themselves are made from protein leather to ensure comfort throughout the day and a leather headband at the top reduces your chances of getting a headache after prolonged use.

Each earcup features a rotation feature that allows you to place them in the perfect position to match your ear’s position and maximize comfort.

Best Earbuds: 1MORE Triple Driver

If headphones are not your style and you want something a little easier to carry around, consider the sub-$100 market’s top earbuds: 1MORE’s Triple Driver.

The earbuds feature three drivers inside that aim at offering outstanding audio quality and accurate depiction of songs the way the artists would want them to sound. In fact, the 1MORE have been tuned by GRAMMY award-winning sound engineer Luca Bignardi to ensure they create the audio experience you’d want.

The earbuds ship with angled tips to ensure a snug fit and come in nine sizes, so you can decide which one has the best fit. Six of those ear tips are silicone and three are foam.

In addition to delivering audio, 1MORE’s earbuds come with an in-line remote control that lets you control your audio without ever taking your smartphone out of your pocket. The earbuds also have a MEMS microphone that has ground wires to reduce background static and create a better-sounding call.

Need some more help finding what you're looking for? Read through our best earbuds article.

Best Dual-Use: Mpow 059

The folks over at Mpow are all about giving you options in their nicely affordable Mpow 059 headphones.

The headphones are designed to be used both in wired and wireless form. When you want to listen to music on your PC or music player, simply plug in the included cable and you’ll be able to get a direct feed to the audio playing on your devices. And for those times when you want to go mobile and ditch the wire, you can connect to smartphones, televisions and other products via its built-in Bluetooth connection.

The headphones don’t come with active noise-canceling but are designed for passive noise isolation, thanks to their large ear cups and closed-back design. These are plastic headphones, so they might not have the construction you’d expect from some others, but that also helps to keep their price down.

When you’re ready to go mobile, expect the Mpow 059 to last up to 20 hours on a single charge. And in case you want to talk to friends, a built-in mic allows for hands-free calling.

Best Sound: Sony MDRXB800

Sony’s MDRXB800 headphones sit over the ear and have a variety of high-end components on the inside, including gold-plated connectors, neodymium earpiece drivers and more. All of that translates to outstanding audio quality with power, deep bass and solid performance at the mids and highs. To keep all that audio directed at your ears instead of outside, Sony has developed a tightly sealed design that limits audio seepage and limits ambient sound intrusion.

Sony’s headphones are wired, but they come with a four-foot cord that should suffice for most uses. The earpads are made from urethane foam that Sony says, makes for a comfortable fit throughout the day. And just in case you want to go mobile, Sony’s headphones have reversible earpads that can be folded and brought along wherever you go.

Take a look at other product reviews and shop for the best Sony headphones​ available online. 

Best Battery: Cowin E7

Cowin’s E7 wireless headphones combine many of the features you might want in a pair of headphones without breaking the bank. And best of all, they last for days at a time on a single charge.

The headphones come with a sturdy design featuring large over-the-ear earcups made of a protein leather that the company says, feels like skin. If you want to drown out the noise around you, Cowin’s headphones have active noise-canceling in both wired and wireless modes.

In fact, if you want to connect the Cowin headphones to a stereo, PC, or other devices, you have the option of plugging them in directly. If it’s wireless you’re after, you’ll find the option to connect to devices either with Bluetooth or near-field communication, making them ideal options for just about any smartphone.

The headphones, which come with 40mm drivers for solid bass and treble sounds, can last a whopping 30 hours on a single charge during continuous Bluetooth playback. And if you don’t want to listen to any audio and just turn on noise-canceling, you can take advantage of the same 30 hours of use.

Best of all, Cowin’s headphones come with an 18-month warranty in case something goes awry.

Best for Ease of Use: iDeaUSA Headphones

The over-the-ear iDeaUSA headphones come with big, puffy earcups to make your time wearing them more comfortable. The headphones are wireless, so you can connect them to your devices via Bluetooth. According to iDeaUSA, the headphones will be able to connect to devices up to 33 feet away and can last a whopping 25 hours on a single charge. It’ll take just two hours to revive your low battery.

If you want to connect to wired devices or enter flight mode, you can do so with a bundled cable and flight adapter that will connect to the headphones’ AUX port.

On the audio side, you’ll find that the iDeaUSA Headphones can pump out solid audio, thanks to their 40mm stereo drivers that use a technology called aptX to maximize their quality. And in case you treat your headphones roughly, you’ll be happy to know they come with a 12-month manufacturers warranty.

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