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What are the best Beats headphones in 2021?

Beats is one of the most popular headphones brands. Their products often appeal to young consumers because of their sleek designs, wide range of bright color choices and bass-forward sound signature. This makes them just as much a fashion accessory as audio equipment.

Because Beats offers various models consisting of in-ear, on-ear and over-the-ear options, choosing the right pair can be difficult. You’ll need to consider your lifestyle, desired features and budget to determine which will best fit your needs. 

The Studio3 Wireless offers one of the most balanced sound profiles of any Beats headphones, making them an ideal choice for those who like to listen to a range of music genres. They also boast active noise-canceling technology to ensure background sounds don’t interfere with your listening experience.

What to know before buying Beats headphones

Types of Beats headphones

Beats offers headphones in over-ear, on-ear and in-ear headphone styles.

Over-ear headphones fully encompass your ears, which helps to create a noise-isolating seal. Whether you purchase a pair of Beats over-ear headphones with or without active noise-canceling technology, they will all block out a decent amount of ambient sound. This seal also makes your music sound louder and gives it deeper bass. However, over-ear headphones are often heavier than other styles, and some may find they tend to get hot.

On-ear headphones sit on your ears. Since the cups don’t need to be large enough to surround your ears, they can have a lighter and sleeker design than over-ear models. Also, they don’t trap as much heat but, at the same time, don’t block out as much ambient noise. 

In-ear headphones are also known as earbuds. These rest inside your ear canal and are either held in place via friction or over-the-ear hooks. Due to the small size of their drivers and other components, they often can’t quite match the sound quality of over-ear headphones, but this does make them ideal for working out or wearing around town where you may not want large, bulky things on your head.

Wired vs. wireless

Beats Ep Wired On-Ear

Most Beats headphones are wireless, which means they will connect to your audio devices via Bluetooth. Most people find this style to be the most convenient, and Beats are generally known for having a stable connection. The downside to wireless headphones is that you must remember to charge them regularly. If you think this might be an issue, you can opt for the Beats Ep Wired On-Ear.

Features to look for in quality Beats headphones

Battery gauge

Some wireless Beats headphones have an illuminated battery gauge that makes it easy to check the remaining battery life. On models that don’t have this, you’ll have to look at your phone while the headphones are connected to see the battery level.

Rapid recharge

Many Beats headphones have a Fast Fuel function that allows you to quickly add a few extra hours of battery life after just five or 10 minutes of charging. The exact amount varies by model, but some get up to three hours of battery life after a five-minute charge.

Active noise cancellation

Headphones with active noise cancellation block out ambient sounds that could interfere with the listening experience. They do this by monitoring outside noises and then creating a phase-inverted frequency that essentially neutralizes the noise. Because of how this technology works, it is most effective at blocking constant, low-frequency sounds.

On-ear controls

Constantly reaching for your phone every time you want to pause your music, skip tracks or adjust the volume can be a hassle. For convenience, Beats headphones feature on-ear controls that let you do all of these things by simply pressing somewhere on the headphones themselves.

Water-resistant construction

If you plan on using your headphones while working out, choosing a model with a water-resistant construction, such as the Powerbeats Pro Totally Wireless, is a great idea. This ensures that sweat or getting caught in light rain won’t damage them.

How much can you expect to spend on Beats headphones?

Depending on the model and generation, Beats headphones can cost anywhere from $50-$350.

Beats headphones FAQ

Do Beats headphones work with Android devices?

A. The Beats brand is owned by Apple. Because of this, their products perform best with Apple devices. They are also compatible with Android devices. However, some functions may not work, such as automatic ear detection and single-ear listening.

Do Beats headphones have good sound quality?

A. Sound quality is somewhat subjective. Some people may love the audio quality of Beats headphones, while others may not. Generally speaking, Beats is known for its bass-forward sound profile, so if you like heavy bass in your music, you’ll probably love the sound quality on Beats headphones.

What are the best Beats headphones to buy?

Top Beats headphones

Beats Studio3 Wireless Headphones

Beats Studio3 Wireless Headphones

What you need to know: The Beats Studio3 offers a more neutral sound profile than many of their models, making them a good choice for those who listen to a range of music genres.

What you’ll love: They feature active noise cancellation, real-time audio calibration and come in a range of stylish colors that includes some two-tone options. 

What you should consider: The build quality doesn’t seem to match the price.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Kohl’s

Top Beats headphones for the money

Beats Solo Pro Wireless Headphones

Beats Solo Pro Wireless Headphones

What you need to know: These on-ear headphones have a lightweight construction and offer an impressive 40 hours of battery life when the active noise canceling feature is not in use.

What you’ll love: They feature a transparency mode so you can stay aware of your surroundings, and they support hands-free voice control via Siri when used with Apple devices.

What you should consider: Those with large heads may find them too tight.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Kohl’s

Worth checking out

Powerbeats Pro Totally Wireless

Powerbeats Pro Totally Wireless

What you need to know: With water-resistant construction and over-the-ear hooks to keep them in place, these earbuds are ideal for use while working out and jogging.

What you’ll love: They come with several ear-tip options and a charging case that provides them with up to 24 hours of additional battery life. They support audio sharing, which allows you to pair two Beats headphones to a single audio source to listen to music with a friend.

What you should consider: They are bulkier than many other earbuds.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Kohl’s


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Brett Dvoretz writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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