Whether you are going to spend a whole day or just an hour in headphones, we bet you always look for comfort. Over-ear headphones have the biggest form factor and therefore are considered to be one with the most comfortable fit.
Still, it doesn’t mean that any over-ear headphones have an ergonomic design. All models differ in their performance, noise cancellation, build quality and, of course, price.
Below you can find some tips on how to choose the cream of the crop. We have also added the list of the best over-ear headphones for both pros and amateurs.
Our Top Picks
How to Choose Over-Ear Headphones
Sound depends on the number and quality of drivers the headphones are equipped with as well as their frequency range. Sure, you can find out this information just checking out the specifications of the item.
Still, probably the best way to test headphones performance is to wear them and to listen to several tracks on your playlist. Check whether you can hear the crisp highs and deep lows. Is the sound well-balanced? If the answer is “yes” then this headset has a chance to become your companion in the future.
Noise isolation & noise cancelling
As over-ear headphones have a large form factor, they often provide a great fit and seal around the ears. Thanks to this, there are a lot of models which offer great noise isolation.
But if you want to enjoy your favorite music in any environment then pay attention to the over-ear headphones with active noise cancelling. Some headsets also offer adaptive noise cancelling. It is especially beneficial for health as you won’t need to turn the volume to maximum in order to drown out the outer sounds.
Wireless & wired
All headphones can be divided into three categories: wired, wireless and those with both modes. Obviously, the best option is to have a pair of headphones that support both wireless and wired modes. Still, if you can’t stand tangles then it’s better to get a Bluetooth headset.
Note that all wireless headphones differ in Bluetooth range. So, don’t forget to check it before buying a product. Besides, they may have different Bluetooth versions. Another thing to consider is battery life and the time of charge.
In case you are planning to purchase the wired headphones, check the quality of the cords they come with. Hefty wires guarantee not only long years or service but also better sound quality and even freedom from tangles.
Comfort & Build quality
Speaking about comfort we mean not only the quality of earcups and headband materials. Over-ear headphones are rather bulky and it may be a real trouble to hide them in your bag. That is why some models are foldable. So, if you travel a lot or if you always carry headphones in your bag then foldable headset would be the best option for you. One more thing to consider before your final choice is the build quality of headphones.
9 Best Over-Ear Headphones To Buy in 2020
Bose QuietComfort 35 (Series II)
The Best Wireless Over-ear Headphones
Behind its stylish design, there is unlimited access to incredible sound. Bose QuietComfort 35 comes with top-notch noise cancellation which lets you get rid of the annoying humming of a lawn-mower under your window and plunge into the bottomless sea of life-like music.
These wireless headphones provide hassle-free Bluetooth pairing as well as Amazon Alexa. It means that Bose QuietComfort 35 can be used as a tool for getting the necessary information. You can also use them for calls as these headphones are equipped with a noise-rejecting dual-microphone system.
To make these Bose headphones even more functional you can download the Bose Connect App which will allow you to adjust its noise-cancellation level, access music sharing, personalize the headphones and manage Bluetooth connections more effectively. It’s also a great way to get software updates.
- Google Assistant button
- wired as well as wireless modes
- hefty noise-cancellation
- immersive sound
- great microphone
- long battery life
- no automatic play/pause
- poor compatibility with iOS devices
- not replaceable battery
Sennheiser PXC 550
Great Over-ear Headphones With Ergonomic Design
Sennheiser PXC 550 is a great option for those who can’t imagine their trips without high-quality music. These over-ear headphones are not only light and comfortable but also foldable, so you can easily put them in your travel bag.
Wearing this wireless headset you will forget about insidious knots and will fall in love with its ergonomic design and intuitive control. Sennheiser PXC 550 comes with high-grade NoiseGard adaptive noise cancellation that allows listeners to enjoy their favorite tracks in any environment.
By the way, this headset is provided with NFC pairing and automatic on/off. Thanks to its triple microphone array it can also boast of crystal clear speech clarity. Sennheiser PXC 550 offers 30-hour performance on a single charge.
- top-notch, adjustable sound
- automatic on/off
- great noise cancellation
- ergonomic design
- wired mode
- great microphone
- long battery life
- unresponsive touch controls
- can leak sound at high volumes
- no display to show the battery level
The Best Over-ear Headphones Under $200
These wired over-ear headphones are designed with 90° swiveling earcups to provide easy one-ear monitoring. Audio-Technica ATH-M50x is foldable, so you may always keep it in your bag when you leave your home. High-quality earpad and robust headband material guarantee comfort during long hours of use.
Thanks to circumaural contours that come around the ears Audio-Technica ATH-M50x has great sound isolation even in the loudest environment. Having extended frequency range it provides clear sounding with deep bass what makes them one of the best bass headphones on the market. Besides, its 45 mm large-aperture drivers that come with rare earth magnets and copper-clad aluminum wire voice coils make these over-ear headphones very durable.
Another advantage is a reasonable price as Audio-Technica ATH-M50x is one of the best headphones under $200.
- detailed and crisp sound with good imaging
- excellent bass
- foldable ergonomic design
- detachable cable
- lots of plastic material
- sound isolation is not perfect
- no microphone for making calls
Great Over-ear Headphones for Working-out
Sony WH1000XM3 is the best over-ear headset for travelers who spend most of their time on the road. It’s got a super fast charge that takes no more than 10 minutes and gives 5 hours of playback. On the whole, these headphones offer 30 hours of non-stop performance. And even if its battery life is over you can use a cord that comes together with this headset as it supports both wired and wireless modes.
Its noise cancelling feature will remove all the background sounds around you. There is also an option of smart listening. These headphones can easily detect your activity and automatically adjust the outer sounds. In order to use this option, you need to download the Android or iOS app.
- great noise cancelling
- comfortable design
- 30-hour battery life
- wired and wireless modes
- elegant design
- touch controls can lag
- fragile hinges
- no app available for Windows or Mac OS X
- the microphone has poor isolation
Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO 250 Ohm
The Best Closed Back Over-ear Headphones for Recording
These over-ear headphones are designed with soft circumaural and replaceable velour ear pads for comfortable wearing during long hours of listening. Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO has a durable construction with spring steel headband that will survive long journeys in your bag as well as ups and downs thanks to its high German quality.
Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO is one of the best studio headphones that can boast of vivid sound with detailed resolution. They come with ultra-low bass and clear highs. Thanks to its spacious reproduction this headset is beloved by many professionals that use it for studio applications. Still, it’s also a wonderful option for music lovers and non-professionals.
- great build quality
- replaceable parts (except for cables)
- professional sound
- great bass
- limited soundstage
- a bit recessed mids
Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2
Great Over-ear Headphones With Noise Cancelling
Looking for the best noise cancelling headphones? Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 offers a full plunge into the world of life-like music without any ambient noises. Still, you can always turn on open-listening mode to hear everything that is going on around you. There are also smart sensors which pause music automatically every time you take the headphones off.
Thanks to ANC this headset has immersive high-resolution sounding which is also well-balanced as Plantronics Backbeat Pro 2 is equipped with hefty speaker drivers. As these are wireless headphones you won’t feel confined by cables that often cause certain inconvenience. Backbeat Pro 2 can stream audio up to 330 feet for almost 24 hours.
- 24-hour battery life
- can be used for making calls
- well-balanced sound
- active noise cancelling
- smart mode
- poor bass
- a bit heavy
Bowers & Wilkins PX7
The Perfect Noise Isolation Design
Over-the-ear headphones are perfect for passive noise isolation, but the PX7 is also equipped with an ANC module. Furthermore, they react to your gestures, as the music is paused when you lift one of the earcups to hear the surrounding sounds. When both earcups are on, the music is resumed automatically.
Bowers & Wilkins equipped these headphones with 43mm drivers, which manage to deliver impeccable low notes, perfect mids, and crisp highs. Also, due to the latest Bluetooth technology and the limitless customization possibilities (they can be paired with an app) the experience is smooth and easy.
While some over-the-ear designs can feel tight and heavy, the PX7 is made from high-grade carbon fiber and features comfortable ear cushions. As a result, you can wear them for as long as 30 hours (battery life on one charge) without feeling any tightness or pressure.
However, due to fast-charging, you’ll only need 15 minutes of charging, and you’ll have six more hours to enjoy!
- High-end audio experience
- The design is comfortable due to the high-quality materials used
- You get 30h of batter on one charge
- Extra 6h of battery with 15 minutes of fast charge
- The ANC is well-designed
- Easy to customize using the specific app
- The built-in microphone could be better
- They are a bit expensive
Great Over-ear Headphones Under $100
Unlike Bowers & Wilkins PX these over-ear headphones are quite cheap. Sony MDR7506 is designed with 40mm drivers and neodymium magnets to deliver rich and clear sound. There is also a wide frequency response (10 Hz-20 kHz). All this guarantees crisp highs and balanced mids.
Sony MDR7506 has a closed-ear design that helps to reduce ambient noises. Keep in mind that these headphones do not have ANC. They are not only comfortable to wear but also portable thanks to their foldable design. Note that this over-ear headset is wired.
- low price
- foldable design
- clear sound
- noise isolation
- no ANC
- no wireless mode
- not the best option for long hours of wearing
Anker Soundcore Life Q20
A Fully Immersive Experience
If you’re looking for a pair of wireless Hi-Res Audio over-ear headphones that block surrounding noises, the Life Q20 model may be perfect! Equipped with custom 40mm dynamic drivers, the headphones allow users to hear every song with rich details and clarity.
Most headphones don’t manage to deliver the best bass experience, but Life Q20 is designed with BassUp technology. They use a specific algorithm that analyses the music and intensifies the low frequencies to create authentic beats.
Moreover, due to Hybrid ANC (designed with internal and external microphones that cancel out an extended range of low and mid-frequency noises), Life Q20 is the ideal companion in airplanes, trains, or buses.
Lastly, these headphones come with a built-in microphone that picks up your voice without any of the ambient sounds. As a result, your calls will be crystal-clear, and due to the BT 5.0 technology, there won’t be any interruptions.
- Hi-Res Audio quality
- Bass-enhancing technology
- Impressive ANC efficiency
- Supports BT 5.0
- Crystal clear calls
- Comfortable and elegant
- Ideal for noisy environments
- Come with AUX 3.5mm cable
- 40h playtime
- Can’t charge and listen at the same time
- Can’t take/make calls in wired mode
- It makes the ears sweat
- The hinges and pivots are creaky and stiff
Nowadays the range of over-ear headphones is quite impressive. You can choose whatever you like or need most of all. The main rule is to check all the specifications of the item before making a final choice.