Best Noise Canceling Headphones Under $100 Android Central 2020
If you want to get the most out of your favorite music or podcast, noise-canceling headphones are the way to go. They block out ambient noise around you, making it easy to focus on what's playing — something that's especially useful when flying, working at a coffee shop, or just being out in public. We've rounded up six of the best ones you can get for less than $100, including the Soundcore Life Q20 as our top overall pick.
- Best Overall: Soundcore Life Q20
- Best Alternative: TaoTronics SoundSurge 60
- Best Value: LETSCOM H033C
- Best Colors: COWIN E7
- Best Comfort: RCA Bluetooth Headphones
- Best Bass: OneOdio Bluetooth Headphones
Best Overall: Soundcore Life Q20
Anker's Soundcore brand has been at the forefront of a lot of budget-minded audio gadgets, and the Life Q20 headphones are another reminder of why Soundcore is one of the most compelling players in the game.
Using a hybrid active noise cancellation system comprised of four ANC microphones, an internal feedback microphone, and an external feedforward microphone, the Soundcore Life Q20 can block up to 90% of ambient noise. That's primarily focused on the low and mid-end of sound frequencies, allowing the Q20 to effectively silence the low rumble of an airplane engine or blowing air conditioner.
40mm drivers allow for powerful sound, including Soundcore's BassUp tech that strengthens the impact of any bass in your music. Battery life is also excellent, with the Q20 giving you 40 hours of total playback. When it does come time to charge up, plugging the headphones in for just five minutes is enough for four hours of use. The only real downside? Not too many color choices.
- 40mm dynamic drivers
- Blocks a wide range of low and mid-range frequencies
- BassUp technology for more powerful bass
- 40-hour battery life per charge
- Five-minute charge = four hours of playback
- Only available in two colors
Checking all the boxes
The Soundcore Life Q20 are some of the best headphones in this niche, offering impressive ANC, sound, and battery life.
Best Alternative: TaoTronics SoundSurge 60
A great alternative to the Soundcore Life Q20 are the TaoTronics SoundSurge 60. The SoundSurge 60 match the Q20 on almost every level, making this a worthy competitor.
Sound quality is excellent on the SoundSurge 60, being nice and balanced without any distortion/rattling in the low-end. Bass isn't the punchiest, but overall, everything sounds great on these headphones. The active noise cancelation is also a big plus, once again performing the best when blocking out low-frequency sounds.
The Bluetooth 5.0 wireless connection is as solid as you could ask for, the 30-hour battery life is more than enough for long-haul flights, and you can quickly get an additional two hours of playback with only five minutes of charging. The plastic design featured on the SoundSurge 60 isn't the most premium-feeling we've ever come across, but it gets the job done.
- Easy-to-use ANC
- Reliable Bluetooth 5.0 wireless connection
- Total battery life of 30 hours
- Fast charging speeds
- Available in fun colors
- Plastic design isn't the nicest out there
Also worth a look
Between the effective noise-canceling and well-balanced sound, the SoundSurge 60 are well worth your dollars.
Best Value: LETSCOM H033C
All of the headphones on this list give you a lot of bang-for-your-buck, but none go quite as far in this regard as the LETSCOM H033C. If you're trying to spend as little as possible while still getting a quality pair of headphones, these are for you.
Design-wise, the H033C looks pretty good. There's a textured pattern on the sides of the earcups, not to mention the incredible red color LETSCOM offers. They're also comfy to wear thanks to the well-padded headband.
LETSCOM's 40mm drivers and Hi-Fi sound mean the H033C sound a lot better than you're likely expecting. Everything has an enjoyable balance to it, and when you combine that with effective noise cancellation, the end result is pretty darn great. The 25-hour battery life isn't awful, but compared to the other headphones on our list, it's the weakest of the bunch.
- Unbeatable price
- Comfortable to wear
- Available in a gorgeous red color
- Hi-Fi sound with 40mm drivers
- ANC works as you'd expect
- 25-hour battery is the weakest on our list
We don't know how LETSCOM can afford to sell the H033C for this cheap, but we sure are glad that it does.
Best Colors: COWIN E7
If you want your headphones to stand out from the crowd, COWIN has you covered with the E7. The plastic used for the earcups is on the cheap side of things, but the outstanding colors more than make up for it. You can get the basic black or white for something subdued, or go with blue, green, purple, or red. No matter which one you choose, all of them look incredible.
COWIN also gets things right when it comes to noise-canceling and audio quality. Similar to pretty much every pair of headphones on this list, the E7's ANC shines with lower frequency sounds, and music is played with a balance that should please everyone. Battery life is another win, with the 30-hour endurance being ideal for travel.
Should anything go wrong with the E7 after your purchase, COWIN covers the headphones with an 18-month warranty.
- Legit noise cancelation
- Sound quality is great
- 30-hour battery
- Excellent color options
- 18-month warranty
- Cheap plastic
Make yourself stand out
With six gorgeous colors at your disposal, the COWIN E7 will make sure you look great while rocking out to your music.
Best Comfort: RCA Bluetooth Headphones
RCA is one of those companies that's been around for years, but as far as consumer tech products go, it isn't as prominent as it once used to be. However, when it comes to affordable noise-canceling headphones, RCA has one of the best options out there.
These RCA headphones are easy to overlook, but you'd be missing out on something great if you did. They have a 30-hour battery life, active noise-canceling that can block up to 90% of ambient noise, and superb sound quality.
Perhaps the biggest draw to RCA's headphones is the design. Thanks to the soft ear pads, breathable mesh, and ample padding, these are some of the most comfortable headphones you can treat your ears to.
- Ridiculously comfortable
- Soft ear pads and breathable mesh
- ANC reduces noise up to 90%
- Battery lasts 30 hours
- Convenient playback controls
- No quick charging
As comfy as can be
The best headphones are the ones you can wear for hours on end without any discomfort, and for this, RCA delivers.
Best Bass: OneOdio Bluetooth Headphones
Finally, let's talk about the OneOdio Bluetooth Headphones. OneOdio is a relatively unknown brand, but it just so happens to make some of the very best headphones in this price segment.
Taking a look at the spec sheet for OneOdio's headphones, it's darn impressive what you get for your money. There's Hi-Fi sound with an emphasis on powerful bass, active noise canceling, Bluetooth 5.0, 40-hour battery life, charging is done via USB-C. If you ask us, all of that sounds basically perfect.
These are still under the $100 limit, but they are the most expensive headphones on our list — possibly making them a non-starter for folks really trying to watch what they spend. However, if you can afford them, OneOdio is offering something really special.
- Hi-Fi sound
- Powerful bass
- USB-C charging
- 40-hour battery
- Bluetooth 5.0
- Most expensive on the list
Boom boom boom
With booming bass, 40-hour battery life, and USB-C charging, OneOdio's headphones have a lot to offer.
The market for noise-canceling headphones under $100 is larger than you might think, and while any of the picks on this list are deserving of our recommendation, we have to go with the Soundcore Life Q20 as our number one choice.
Simply said, these headphones do it all. They look good, sound great, and the noise-canceling works as well as you can ask for at this price. The 40-hour battery life is also incredible, not to mention that it's made even better with the impressive fast charging feature.
You get all of this at a phenomenal price, coming in well less than the $100 limit.
Credits — The team that worked on this guide
Joe Maring is Android Central's News Editor and has had a love for anything with a screen and CPU since he can remember. He's been talking/writing about Android in one form or another since 2012 and often does so while camping out at the nearest coffee shop. Have a tip? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org!
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