Looking for a pair of epic noise-canceling headphones? When we’re not in the ocean or exploring new cities, Ollie and I both have full-time jobs. Finding a quiet place to work can be tricky, especially in vibrant areas.
The best solution we’ve found to work in noisy areas is a pair of noise-canceling headphones. With a pair of these guys, even the noisiest cafe can transform into a productive work environment. And Ollie doesn’t leave the house without his stashed in his essential travel backpack.
Whether you’re traveling the world, or at home in a shared space, a pair of noise-canceling earphones are a must for any digital nomad.
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Best Headphones For Travel (and Buds)
A good pair of wireless, noise-canceling earphones can make working from anywhere easier. They also make an amazing gift for any globetrotting professional. Here’s a list of the best and most comfortable noise-canceling headphones.
1. Bose QuietComfort 35 II Wireless Bluetooth Headphones
At the top of the list, we have the Bose Quiet Comfort 35 II (or as Ollie calls them, ‘The Candi Silencer!’). Ollie brings these guys with us wherever we go. Not only do they come with 3 levels of noise cancelation but they’re also wireless (the battery lasts around 20 hours). They also look pretty amazing.
In our opinion, these are the best noise-canceling headphones with a microphone. The built-in noise-rejecting dual-microphone system is perfect for video calls or online teaching.
2. Apple AirPods Pro
If you’re an Apple fan, these tiny noise-canceling earphones are essential. The Apple AirPods Pro are sweat and water-resistant while offering a customizable fit. They’re also super compact, leaving you with more packing room for everything else.
The intelligent microphones detect noise from inside and outside your ear. Anti-noise technology counters the sound before you hear it. They also come with a transparency mode that allows you to hear what’s going on in the world around you.
3. Sony WF-1000XM3
If you’re looking for great wireless buds, the Sony WF-1000XM3 is a tiny yet effective choice. These noise-canceling earphones create an incredible listening experience while keeping out external sound.
You’ll be able to listen for up to 24 hours and the smart-listening technology switches to ambient sound mode based on your activity. Their small size makes them ideal for exercising, whether you’re in a noisy gym or running outdoors.
4. Samsung Galaxy Buds+
For more affordable wireless earphones, the Samsung Galaxy Buds+ are awesome. They fit perfectly into your ears and effectively cancel out all surrounding noise. These buds come with some of the best noise-canceling microphones, both internal and external. These offer crystal clear sound, even in noisy locations.
The battery lasts for around 22 hours and a short three minute charge time allows for an hour of listening. This is perfect if you’re commuting and your battery dies.
5. Sony WH1000XM Noise Cancelling Headphones
If you prefer over the ear headphones compared to buds, the Sony WH1000XM3 will last you for 30 hours- perfect for long international trips. They also automatically detect your listening activity and balance the noise canceling levels.
Sony uses smart technology to analyze the sonic characteristics caused by head size, glasses, and hair, optimizing the sound to your needs.
These noise-canceling Bluetooth headphones with a microphone make taking hands-free calls easy. Sony also has a nifty app for the headphones that allows you to adjust the EQ.
6. RCA Active Noise-Canceling Headphones
You don’t have to fork out too much cash when it comes to headgear. These budget noise-canceling headphones offer quality without the hefty price tag. The RCA Active Noise-Canceling Headphones allow you to immerse yourself in your music. They’re designed to be super comfortable, which is essential if you’re working for long hours.
They fold up quite nicely, meaning they’ll easily fit inside your backpack or suitcase. Don’t worry if you’re low on battery. You can switch to wired mode, plugging the headphones directly into your device for endless enjoyment. If you prefer to listen without the cord, the battery lasts around 30 hours.
7. Beats Solo Pro Wireless Noise Cancelling On-Ear Headphones
Stylish and comfortable, the Beats Solo Pro Headphones are perfect for those who want to listen to music while looking good. You can get these sleek headphones in various colors, making it easy to know which headset belongs to who (which works perfectly if you’re a digital nomad couple like us).
With an Apple H1 Headphone Chip and Class 1 Bluetooth, these headphones offer an extended range and fewer dropouts. The active noise cancellation blocks external noise, allowing you to stay focussed. They also come with transparency, allowing you to stay aware of your surroundings while listening.
8. Bowers & Wilkins PX Active Noise Cancelling Wireless Headphones
Customizing your listening experience is easy with the Bowers & Wilkins PX Noise-Canceling Headphones. The companion app allows you to tailor what you hear and how you hear it. A single charge will allow you 22 hours of active playback.
The crisp sound allows you to completely immerse yourself in movies, music, or podcasts, making it ideal for both commuting and working.
9. Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 Wireless with Active Noise Cancellation
The Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 Noise-Canceling Headphones come with a microphone that allows for optimum voice quality. It’s also great at reducing any external noise.
The NoiseGard hybrid active noise-cancellation filters out ambient noise using four microphones. This allows for ultimate isolation which is awesome in busy co-working spaces. And the headphones fold up, allowing them to fit comfortably in your travel bag.
10. Philips SHP9500 HiFi Precision Stereo Over-Ear Headphones
The Philips SHP9500 are affordable noise-canceling headphones that deliver full-spectrum, authentic sound. They come with a comfortable double layered headband cushion that can be adjusted to suit your head. The breathable ear cushion allows for longer wearing comfort.
The precisely angled drivers channel sound directly into your ears. This creates a dynamic and authentic listening experience.
Final Thoughts on Best Headphones For Traveling
You should now have a pretty good idea of exactly what earphones or headphones you need. Ollie and I are definitely more productive when we get in the zone and noise-canceling headphones help us get there.
Whether you’re in the market for a ‘Candi Silencer’ or a pair of buds, these are the best on the market. If you haven’t already, you should definitely add a pair to your digital nomad packing list.