Every day we are bombarded with so much noise that sometimes music can be our only refuge. With noise-canceling headphones, you can totally tune out unwanted sounds so you’ll be able to enjoy your music whenever and wherever you want. Use them in your daily commute, a long-haul flight, or even at the office to slip right into audio nirvana. Save up to $150 when you get the Sennheiser HD 4.50 BT, Beats Studio 3, and Sony WH-1000XM3 ANC headphones on Best Buy today.
– $91, was $180
For just $91 on Best Buy, a huge $89 off their normal retail price of $180, the Sennheiser HD 4.50 BT are wonderfully inexpensive for a pair of noise-canceling headphones. However, it’s apparent where Sennheiser had to cut corners in order to lower their price: Build construction. What you get is an all-plastic affair and although there’s memory foam cushioning, the synthetic leather covering the earcups doesn’t scream opulence. Thanks to the memory foam, wearing these circumaural (over-the-ears) headphones even for long periods of time won’t feel like a pain endurance test. You don’t get any fancy case for storing these headphones, but they do swivel flat and the simple canvas bag that they come with is fine.
For controls, the right earcup features a multifunction button for music playback and accepting calls, and volume up and down buttons which you have to press simultaneously to turn the ANC on. The 4.50 BT’s noise-canceling is decent but can’t compete with more premium noise-canceling headphones, particularly the Sony WH-1000XM3 (see below). It’s enough to eliminate the low hum of airconditioning, normal crowd hubbub, and traffic noises, but not enough to completely muffle the roar of a plane’s engines. If you’re a frequent flyer and want to be fully immersed in your in-flight entertainment, these may not be the headphones for you.
The sound quality is really good. The bass is full-bodied but not overpowering, the treble sparkles, and the mids are warm and very natural-sounding. The 4.50 BT’s sound signature would definitely work well with a variety of music genres.
Battery life is also top-notch. With ANC on, you get 19 hours of playback and an even longer 25 hours if you’re just going to use Bluetooth. Once it’s out of juice, just connect the cord and continue listening to your music wired.
The Sennheiser HD 4.50 BT’s noise-canceling is good but far from perfect. There are definitely other headphones out there that can offer total music immersion. However, if you’re budget-conscious and don’t really need that much noise-canceling power, you won’t find a better and more reasonably priced pair than these. Get them for just $91 on Best Buy today.
— $200, was $350
Recently, Apple-owned Beats has been receiving a lot of flak from audiophiles, claiming that the company’s headphones are all style and no substance. While we can agree to a certain extent that Dr. Dre’s headphones build quality is a bit questionable, we can’t deny the fact that they do sound great. Case in point: The Beats Studio 3. There is a lot to love about these wireless headphones, including outstanding iOS connectivity, fantastic noise-canceling, and phenomenal battery life. We even have little to complain of in terms of audio quality, although as most Beats headphones the Studio 3 can get excessively bass-heavy. Right now, you can score them on Best Buy for $200 instead of $350 — a massive $150 off.
The Beats Studio 3 look perfectly well-built even though they are made almost entirely of plastic. For the price, most people would expect real leather, aluminum, or Alcantara, but Beat’s choice of materials is fine, albeit far from luxurious. These headphones have a beautiful matte coating that’s fingerprint- and dirt-resistant. Best of all, they don’t dig into your skull even with prolonged use, unlike the ill-fitting Solo3. This is due to the earcups’ uber-soft cushioning, pivoting action, and advanced venting, which makes for a secure but super comfortable fit.
Thanks to Apple’s W1 wireless chip (the same one found inside the AirPods), all you need to do is to turn these headphones on and if they’re in close proximity to your iPhone, iPad, or MacBook, a nice little pop-up will appear for immediate pairing. All you need to do is hit “yes.” Aside from the seamless pairing, another benefit of the W1 chip is the tremendous battery life. These headphones can last up to 22 hours and even longer with active noise cancellation off.
Speaking of noise-canceling, Studio 3 boasts one of the best ambient sound-eliminating tech in the business. Called Pure ANC, it involves two onboard microphones inside the earcups that monitor and adapt to environmental sounds many thousands of times per second. A lot of noise-canceling headphones noticeably distort audio or have a faint hum to them, but we didn’t notice any of that with the Studio 3.
As mentioned, Beats put a tad too much emphasis on the bass with the Studio 3. While this will definitely make pop songs toe-tappingly good, it does tend to drag down mid-frequency sounds (mostly vocals and instrumentation) a bit. Still, we think many would appreciate this kind of sound, especially young people. Get the Beats Studio 3 noise-canceling headphones on Best Buy for $200 instead of $350 today.
– $280, was $350
The new and improved WH-1000XM3 is Sony’s premium noise-canceling headphones offering and our choice for the best headphones of 2020. They’ve got a lot going for them. First is how cool they look. Sony got rid of the rugged, leathery finish around the earcups and replaced it with a new plastic chassis, making for a far sleeker silhouette. The change in material made the WH-1000XM3 more lightweight and slender, enhancing wearability. Plus, the swivel design of the earcups guarantees supreme comfort. The cups are ergonomically padded and made even larger for bigger ears, and the material is nicely breathable, so you won’t feel uncomfortably hot even after long wear.
Aside from their pleasing aesthetics, the Sony WH-1000XM3 headphones are very solid when it comes to noise cancellation. Thanks to Sony’s new QN1 processor, this technology has dramatically improved both audio processing and noise cancellation. Turning on the ANC practically obliterated every loud sound in the environment, from people to vehicles. The WH-1000XM3 also adapt their noise cancellation based on where you are. Through Sense Engine, these headphones let in certain traffic noises like horns and sirens, so you won’t get run over by a car while listening to music.
Music sounds immaculate with these headphones, supported by 32-bit signal processing, a high signal-to-noise ratio, and low distortion. Studio recordings sound impeccable, while live recordings are completely immersive. Basses sound punchy and strong, but without overpowering the beauty and subtlety of the mids and highs.
You can operate these headphones through gestures as well as by pushing buttons. When you cup your hand over the right earcup, music will automatically pause so you can have a conversation. Swiping and tapping also lets you play/pause, skip/return tracks, and adjust the volume. Lastly, the Sony WH-1000XM3’s battery life can last an epic 30 hours between charges. Even charging these for just 10 minutes allows you to use them for five hours with active noise cancellation.
The Sony WH-1000XM3 are hands-down the best headphones that you can buy right now. They are a bit pricey, but as they say, you’ve got to spend a bit of money for real quality. They normally retail for $350, but with Best Buy’s awesome $70 discount, you can snag them for $280.
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