May 19, 2022

Best wireless earbuds 2022

By Ted Kritsonis last updated 1 day ago

We chose the best pairs to plug your ears with rich sound.

Included in this guide:1

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JabraElite 7 ProCHECK PRICE2

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SamsungGalaxy Buds ProCHECK PRICE3

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SonyWF-1000XM4 Wireless EarbudsCHECK PRICE4

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SamsungGalaxy Buds 2CHECK PRICE5

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SennheiserMomentum True Wireless 2CHECK PRICE6

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BoseQuietComfort EarbudsCHECK PRICE7

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GooglePixel Buds A-SeriesCHECK PRICE8

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BeatsStudio BudsCHECK PRICE9

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JaybirdVista 2CHECK PRICE10

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AppleAirPods ProCHECK PRICE11

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AnkerSoundcore Liberty Air 2 ProCHECK PRICE12

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RazerHammerhead True Wireless ProCHECK PRICE

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best wireless earbuds

(Image credit: Marco Miranda / Android Central)

The best wireless earbuds need more than just great sound. We’ve reviewed a sizeable number of models available and rated the absolute leaders of the pack based on every important metric: comfort, battery life, noise cancellation, water resistance, phone, and assistant integration, and so on. These tiny headphones from companies like Jabra, Samsung, Sennheiser, Sony, and others are almost as important as the phones in our pockets. Our buyer’s guide for the best wireless earbuds for Android and iPhone will help you find the pair that suits your needs and sounds the best, regardless of what you like listening to.

What are the best wireless earbuds you can buy today?

Like any pair of headphones, which earbuds or wireless headphones are fitting for you is subjective in a few key ways. They have to fit right, feel comfortable over more extended periods, and produce a pleasing sound to your ears. If audio fidelity is paramount for you, there are good options for that, just as there are options for being active or present great value without breaking the bank.

Topping our list for the best wireless earbuds are the Jabra Elite 7 Pro because they strike the right notes where it counts. We’re talking about excellent sound quality, excellent comfort, solid microphones, and accessibility — and all at a pretty reasonable price. Slightly bigger and more expensive but better-sounding are the Sony WF-1000XM4.

If sound really matters — and money is no object — the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 are so good they could rival many over-ear headphones with their clarity. It won’t matter what genre you like most, and with improved battery life to boot, these are premium earbuds worth a look.

The Bose QuietComfort Earbuds are the best when noise cancelation is a priority, but they don’t skimp out on sound quality. As a result, they are among the best available if audio clarity is on your must-have feature list. Google’s Pixel Buds A-Series play nice with any Android phone or tablet, and you’ll probably find them to be among the most comfortable to wear for long periods. The Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro have seen price drops that make them solid value for what they bring to the table. Even the tightest budget can still find something within reach in this list.

Jabra Elite 7 Pro
(Image credit: Ted Kritsonis / Android Central)

Jabra Elite 7 Pro

Best wireless earbuds overall

SPECIFICATIONS

Water-resistance: IP57Bud battery life: 8 hoursCase battery life: 30 hoursCase size: SmallDigital assistant: Google Assistant, SiriAudio codecs: SBC, AACSpeaker size: 6mm driversWireless charging: YesOther features: ANC, HearThrough, equalizerTODAY’S BEST DEALS

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REASONS TO BUY

+Excellent audio quality with solid ANC+Better fit and comfort+Outstanding call quality+Pretty good durability+Reliable button controls

REASONS TO AVOID

-Custom ANC shouldn’t be mandatory-Too few codecs

The Jabra Elite Active 75t are still available as one of the best value wireless earbuds you can wear right now, and they ultimately set the stage for what the Elite 7 Pro bring to the table. As an experienced hearing aid company, Jabra has shown a consistent ability to find balance in how it approaches both comfort and sound. These earbuds feature a nicely balanced sound signature that you can easily adjust in the excellent Sound+ app available for Android and iOS. The Elite 7 Pro also share these design and functionality principles with the Elite 7 Active, delivering smooth mid-range and treble frequencies that won’t hurt your ears, even during piercing high notes. It’s just a shame it didn’t add other Bluetooth codecs to round out a great audio package.

While there is good active noise cancelation (ANC), it’s a bit annoying Jabra forces you to customize it to your ear before you can even use the feature. What helps, even more, is that there’s excellent passive noise isolation here, which helps further the cause, owing to the excellent build that makes these so comfortable to wear, even for more extended periods.

As for battery life, you get up to eight hours per charge, with ANC on. You can stretch that further if you leave it off. The included case nets three additional charges for an overall total of around 30 hours. The case itself charges via USB-C or Qi wireless charging, including a fast-charging option where plugging in for five minutes can get you up to 60 minutes of playback.

The Elite Active 7 Pro are also IP57 water and dust-resistant, which means they’ll have little issue with sweat, rain, snow, or other water-absorbing activities. So they actually provide the same level of protection compared to the Elite 7 Active, except they don’t have the same rubberized coating the Active pair does.

These earbuds are also incredible for making calls because of Jabra’s MultiSensor Voice Technology. In our tests, the receiver on the other end told us it was among the clearest phone calls they’d ever heard from a pair of headphones. There’s also an included “transparency” mode available at the tap of a button — did we mention there are physical controls here? — that pumps in sound from the outside world through one of the three included microphones. That makes it easier to talk to people or hear the outside world without removing the earbuds. Not to mention a handy mute button when you need a moment.

Jabra also finally addressed an omission from the start by updating the firmware in January 2022 to bring in multipoint support, letting you connect to two devices simultaneously. You can also use a single earbud in mono mode for those times you don’t want to plug both ears.

For more information on why there are the best wireless earbuds available today, check our Jabra Elite 7 Pro review.

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro
(Image credit: Daniel Bader / Android Central)

Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro

Best value wireless earbuds

SPECIFICATIONS

Water-resistance: IPX7Bud battery life: 8 hoursCase battery life: 28 hoursCase size: SmallDigital assistant: Bixby, Google Assistant, SiriAudio codecs: SBC, AACSpeaker size: 13mm driversWireless charging: YesOther features: ANC, HearThrough, 360 Audio, Voice DetectTODAY’S BEST DEALS

Prime

VIEW AT AMAZON

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View at Amazon

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View at Amazon

REASONS TO BUY

+Excellent sound+Effective ANC+Rugged water and sweat resistance+Comfortable design+Spatial 360 Audio+Reliable microphone quality

REASONS TO AVOID

-Lower battery life than before-Finicky touch controls-Needs custom EQ

Samsung’s Galaxy Buds Pro take the best features from the previous Galaxy Buds+ and Galaxy Buds Live wireless earbuds and make a stand as one of the best wireless earbuds we’ve tested. It’s a distinction the company has wanted from the start, but it took several attempts to get to this level of respectability.

The design borrows heavily from the past, yet puts a different twist on these earbuds to accommodate all the extra tech inside. They’re small and nimble, but they have more girth to pack in the active noise cancelation (ANC) and other sensors that bring in the new features. They also have larger drivers to pump out crisper sound by default, with the option to choose among six equalizer presets in the Galaxy Wearable app. It’s just too bad there’s no custom EQ to add your presets to the list.

ANC has two settings (high and low) and four Ambient mode settings, but both can work together uniquely. Voice Detect lowers the volume of the audio you’re listening to and turns on Ambient once you start talking to make it easy to hear a conversation. The audio comes back when there are no voices for up to 10 seconds. Samsung claims the ANC can cut out up to 99% of background noise, but that’s primarily accurate for low-frequency sounds. Higher pitches could still break through.

With 360 Audio inside using Dolby Head Tracking technology, the Galaxy Buds Pro are also great for watching content coded in 5.1 and 7.1 surround sound. It’s a virtual spatial audio effect that enhances the reverb of a movie or show, though it’s a shame you can’t listen to music from streaming services with the same effect.

Samsung also managed to continue its steady improvement in call quality. In our Galaxy Buds Pro review, we were impressed with how clear calls were, with those we spoke to not realizing we were using earbuds. The one caution to handling these earbuds is the overly responsive touch controls, where accidental taps can often happen when adjusting them in your ears.

The good news is that they’re more rugged than you might expect. With an IPX7 rating, the level of water and sweat resistance means the Galaxy Buds Pro are perfectly suited to a run or workout. Certainly a better option that way when compared to the Galaxy Buds 2.

These features come at the expense of battery life, where you max out at up to five hours per charge when ANC is on. It goes up to eight hours if you keep ANC off, but those numbers aren’t as good as some competitors. The included case will get you three extra charges, which you can charge via USB-C or wireless charging pads. A quick five-minute charge through USB can get you up to an hour of playback.

Sony WF-1000XM4
(Image credit: Ara Wagoner / Android Central)

Sony WF-1000XM4

Best upgrade pick

SPECIFICATIONS

Water-resistance: IPX4Bud battery life: 8 hoursCase battery life: 24 hoursCase size: MediumAssistant support: Google Assistant, SiriAudio codecs: SBC, AAC, LDACSpeaker size: 6mm driversWireless charging: QiOther features: ANC, Ambient sound, equalizer, 360 Reality AudioTODAY’S BEST DEALS

Prime

VIEW AT AMAZONView at Adorama WWView at Adorama WW

REASONS TO BUY

+Outstanding ANC performance+Stellar sound quality+Amazing battery life+Wireless charging case with USB-C+LDAC and 360 Audio support+Solid app support

REASONS TO AVOID

-Touch controls need work-Smaller ears may not feel comfy-Single-bud mode only in right buds

At this point, ANC has found its way into more true wireless earbuds, but they won’t match the level attained here with the WF-1000XM4, which are world-class by comparison. Their predecessors, the WF-1000XM3, were among the best wireless earbuds available and can still hold their own, but when it comes to an upgrade, it’s hard to top this pair. As we said in our Sony WF-1000XM4 review, they won’t win accolades for beauty, but are very effective at doing what they’re supposed to.

Sony didn’t have to play too much with the existing sound profile, but did maintain a consistent design approach. Rather than skew the default sound stage to push more bass, Sony preferred to keep it more neutral, leaving plenty of room to customize it through the equalizer settings in the Headphones Connect app. That helps the mid-range breathe and come through with greater detail, while the highs maintain a warm signature. Of course, if you want bass, you can get it from the app, including through the Extra Bass feature.

Battery life is excellent, with up to eight hours alone and an additional 24 hours with their charging case. Sony chiseled that case down 40% to make it a lot more portable, which is great considering how cumbersome the previous one tended to be. Along with ANC, the WF-1000XM4 have an ambient sound mode that also performs well. And then there’s 360 Reality Audio for listening to content with a spatial effect. The LDAC codec allows you to listen to hi-res audio tracks through services that support them.

There’s a lot to like about these earbuds, and though they are among the best noise-canceling pairs available, they aren’t without some drawbacks. The fit may not be for everyone, and the Adaptive Sound Control mode still feels like a work in progress. And while the IPX4 rating does offer some water and sweat resistance, you will need to be careful not to submerge them in water and wipe them down after a run or workout to keep them clean.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2
(Image credit: Daniel Bader / Android Central)

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2

Best balanced fit

SPECIFICATIONS

Water-resistance: IPX2Bud battery life: 7.5 hoursCase battery life: 29 hoursCase size: SmallAssistant support: Bixby, Google Assistant, SiriAudio codecs: SBC, AAC, ScalableSpeaker size: 11.5mm driversWireless charging: YesOther features: Active Noise Cancelation, Ambient Sound

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