Shopping·7 min read

Over-the-Ear Headphones For Every Budget

over the ear headphones wireless headphones wired headphones
Design: theSkimm | Image: Amazon
March 28, 2023

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To say the over-the-ear headphones market is vast is an understatement. If you’re looking for a new pair and don’t know where to begin, we’ve rounded up the ones we think are worth adding to cart. From budget-friendly pairs to splurge-worthy noise-cancelling headphones to wireless ones HQ’rs love for working out, our recs include options across a range of price points. Queue up the playlists and let’s get shopping.

Sony over the ear headphones

A budget-friendly pair of wired headphones for professionals…

Whether you’re in tech, recording, or production, or just want some high-quality sound for your at-home DJ hobby, these headphones are a solid choice. They’ve got 40-millimeter drivers (i.e., speakers) for crisp and powerful sound, a frequency response of 10 hertz to 20 kilohertz, and a closed-ear design that prevents any unwanted sound from passing through. If you’re thinking about taking these on the go, snag the headphone and case bundle that’ll keep them where you want ’em at all times. ($80.52+, Amazon

Buy it
audiotechnica over the ear headphones

Professional-grade over-the-ear headphones…

These are great for mixing, tracking, DJing, or just casually listening to your favorite tunes. They come in both wireless and wired options, and a range of colors to choose from. Customers love the collapsible ear cups that make traveling a cinch, and the pro-level earpad and headband construction that provides hours of comfy wear. ($169+, Amazon)

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grado over the ear headphones

Entry-level headphones that deliver high-quality sound…

These have been hand-built in Brooklyn and are the fourth generation of the brand’s Prestige series. They’ve got 44-millimeter drivers that reduce distortion, redesigned cables, and an extra-cushy headband that’ll feel comfy for hours. Customers say they produce incredible mids and highs with enough bass to provide quality sound for the price point. ($99, Amazon)

Buy it
wireless headphones apple headphones

Wireless headphones from Apple that live up to the hype…

These are an HQ’r fave thanks to their sleek design and top-notch noise cancellation. Use the two buttons at the top to trigger Siri, toggle between songs, raise and lower the volume, and switch from noise-cancelling mode to transparency mode. You’ll get 20 hours of listening with a full charge and a slim storage case that’ll extend battery life. This pair is designed with detachable ear cushions that can be cleaned with gentle soap and water, and it comes in five different colors. BRB, adding to cart. ($479+, Amazon)

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bose over the ear headphones

HQ’r-approved noise-cancelling headphones from a premier brand…

Our editors love these Bose headphones thanks to their sound quality, battery life, touch controls, and (of course) noise cancellation capability. They deliver clear and crisp sound, last up to 20 hours per charge, and have easy-to-use controls that let you skip, pause, play, and adjust volume. All this plus a super-sleek design? It’s a yes from us. Read our full review of this pair, plus our thoughts on a similar Bose model, here. ($329, Amazon

Buy it at AmazonBuy it at Bose
beats over the ear headphones

Bluetooth headphones lightweight enough to wear while working out…

We’re not going to say these are the best over-the-ear headphones for working out, but they’re definitely in the running (see what we did there?). These come in seven different colors and deliver top-notch noise cancellation, 22 hours of listening time, and a fast-fuel charge: Plug them in for just 10 minutes for three hours of charge when the battery is running low. One of our editors has been using these for years, and they’ve had consistently long battery life since day one. Plus, iPhone and Android users alike can enjoy seamless pairing and switching between devices. ($199.99+, Amazon)

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Cat headphones

Cat headphones perfect for snagging first place…

These over-the-ear headphones are a great choice for gamers. They come in either pink or black, and have tons of streaming capabilities. Like a built-in microphone with noise-cancelling abilities, cooling gel-infused ear cushions to prevent overheating, stream-reactive lighting, and so much more. Players, start your engines. ($99, Amazon)

Buy it
Skullcandy over the ear headphones

Wallet-friendly Skullcandy wireless headphones…

If you’re looking for a low-stakes pair you can commute with, vacation with, or work out while wearing, we rec these from Skullcandy. They’re durable, comfortable, have a long-lasting battery life, and are great quality for the price. Customers also say they appreciate the tight-hugging ear padding that provides an element of noise cancellation. ($50, Amazon

Buy it
Baby headphones

Child-friendly wireless headphones…

Now your little one can enjoy their favorite tunes with a built-in volume limiter for your peace of mind. These come in four different colors, provide 28 to 30 hours of listening on one charge, and are made from spill- and accident-proof materials that’ll extend their longevity. ($29.99+, Amazon)

Buy it at AmazonBuy it at Belkin
bang and olufsen headphones

Ultra-luxe over-the-ear headphones that’ll last…

If you’re willing to drop a pretty penny on an investment pair, these premium Bang & Olufsen headphones are a worthy option. They’ve been crafted with high-end materials like titanium, lambskin leather, and memory foam, and come with a hard case that’ll protect them wherever you go. You’ll get 38 hours of playtime, advanced noise-cancelling abilities, multiple built-in mics, and two 40-millimeter drivers. Hello, luxury. ($739.99+, Amazon)

Buy it at AmazonBuy it at Saks Fifth Avenue

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