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  • Dave Nathanael

Wireless Audio Listening in 2021?

Quite recently, many students and colleagues asked me on my opinion on wireless earbuds / headphones.

I'll make this blog post as short as possible, but I'll try to keep it informative!


However, worth to mention that wireless audio headphones are still expanding and getting more and more polished. Here are some of my thoughts on the current state of wireless audio headphones, per April 2021.

But take it with a grain of salt, cos I'm not a fully-experienced audiophile; I just happen to have very high interests in audio technology, audio listening (both analytical listening and leisure listening), and keeping myself updated with the newest audio tech.



PRO & CONS of wireless headphones (over wired headphones):

+ Convenience

+ Portable (cable-free)

+ Easy to connect to multiple sources / devices

- Less audio quality

- ANC: hissing sound & added pressure to your ears

- Mostly are more expensive, compared to wired-headphones with the same sound-quality


IN-, ON-, & OVER-EAR Headphones:

My personal taste would definitely be the over-ear headphones; before going to on-ear, then in-ear.

Over-ear headphones comes with open and close back design. Open-back designed headphones creates natural space / almost always bigger soundstage, and close-back creates more of a condensed sound; people with bass-heavy heads tend to like close-back headphones more, since close-back headphones produces pumping bass; though sometimes sacrifice clarity on the mid and higher registers.

In-ear, for my taste, would just sound too much of that 'in-your-head' sound without much spatial room to listen to.



However in this era, many people, me included, would have a second pair of headphones; not for listening enjoyment, but for convenience. I also use a wireless headphones, with ANC, which benefits when I have to take bus going somewhere a bit far. But at home, I always go back to my over-ear big chunky headphones with my silent environment to really enjoy the music with such a pristine details and big sound-stage.


Here I'll list some of the wireless headphones, from each category. And I'll list everything in order from my top-pick to the lower alternatives; have it in mind that the pricier isn't always the better! :) I have tried maybe 80-90% of the headphones listed in this list. I'd highly appreciate if you could use this link to the Amazon site as well. Just to make it very clear, as an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases (from Amazon.ca). Thank you for supporting!



OVER-EAR:

- Beyerdynamic Amiron Wireless, $$$$$: https://amzn.to/3xgABHm

- DROP Panda Wireless, $$$$$: https://amzn.to/3tGNgRH

- Sennheiser Momentum 3 Around-Ear, $$$$$: https://amzn.to/2QePt8t

- Sennheiser HD1 (or "Momentum 2") Around-Ear, $$$: https://amzn.to/2QePkBX

- Bang & Olufsen Beoplay H9 3rd Gen, $$$$$: https://amzn.to/3xgzNCk

- Sony WH1000XM4, $$$$$: https://amzn.to/2RQ5T7r

- Audio-Technica ATH-M50xBT, $$: https://amzn.to/3dEkxaw

- Sony WH1000XM3, $$$: https://amzn.to/3xbzVTD

- Bang & Olufsen Beoplay H4 2nd Generation Over-Ear, $$$: https://amzn.to/3gw9cv2

- Apple AirPods Max, $$$$$: https://amzn.to/3ehRyIE

- Sennheiser Momentum Around-Ear, $$: https://amzn.to/2QePkBX

ON-EAR:

- Sennheiser HD1 (or "Momentum 2") On-Ear, $$: https://amzn.to/3sGBTI3

- Bang & Olufsen H8i On-Ear, $$$$: https://amzn.to/3dDyOnR

- Grado GW100, $$$: https://amzn.to/3esc5KN

- Sennheiser HD65, $: https://amzn.to/32DqfDm


IN-EAR:

- Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2, $$$: https://amzn.to/3avPXh7

- Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 1, $$: https://amzn.to/32JyZHL

- Sennheiser CX400 BT, $$: https://amzn.to/3gCXFKa

- Bang & Olufsen, $$$$: https://amzn.to/3sGhh2w

- SoundPEATS TruEngine 3SE, $: https://amzn.to/2QLkUqT

- Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro, $: https://amzn.to/3awBqls

- Jabra Elite 85t, $$: https://amzn.to/32CEY1b

- Jabra Elite 75t, $: https://amzn.to/2QNjKuO

- Apple AirPods Pro, $$: https://amzn.to/3dDBjX8



Enjoy your time! :)

I'll try to make a list for my takes on wired headphones soon, in a new blog post!