Do you love listening to music on the go?
Are you passionate about your favorite news or talk radio stations?
Having the ability to listen to music or the radio wherever you are is essential if you enjoy audio programs.
But you can’t use the first cheap headphones to come along while listening to your favorites.
You need a pair of affordable, inexpensive, and high quality headphones to make portable listening worth your while.
Settling for anything other than the best headphones for your needs is an outrage if you ask me!
I’ve reviewed the best headphones under $200 to make your life easier.
Quick List: Top 7 Headphones Under $200
- Plantronics Wireless Pro 2 Headphones – Best Overall
- Jabra Evolve 65T True Wireless – Best True Wireless
- Sennheiser RS120 Wireless Headphones – Best On-Ear
- Jaybird Vista True Wireless – Best In-Ear
- Philips Over Ear Headphones – Best Over-Ear
- Sennheiser HD 4.50 Headphones – Best Noise Cancelling
- Beyerdynamic 459038 DT Headphones
Researching the Best Headphones Under $200
As I searched to find the best headphones under $200, I focused my research on a few key areas, including the best overall, the best true wireless, the best on-ear, the best in-ear, the best over-ear, and the best noise cancelling.
You might be wondering, “Why did you research so many different styles of headphones?” It’s a great question that deserves a simple answer. I researched these varying styles because I have readers with different wants, needs and preferences.
As an example, I have some readers that absolutely despise sticking anything into their ear canals, including earbuds. The mere thought of using earbuds grosses them out!
For these readers, I had to review at least one pair of on-ear headphones. And because I love you guys and gals and I appreciate your readership, I always choose to review the headphones that I consider the best in each category.
As you read through these reviews, just remember that I tried my best to review something for everyone within the overall theme of the best headphones under $200.
Why? Price matters. That’s why. And as my reader, you deserve to own high-quality, affordable, and exceptional headphones that won’t necessarily break the second you take them out of the box!
If you think you want to up the budget a bit, i recommend reading our article on the best headphones under $500.
The Best Headphones Under $200 in 2021
1. Plantronics Wireless Pro 2 Headphones – Best Overall
The Plantronics Wireless Pro 2 Headphones are the best overall with noise cancelling capabilities, 24 hour streaming, and real wireless freedom of movement.
✔️ What we like: Streaming from as far as 330 feet away
❌ What we don’t like: Too bulky and heavier than expected
- Powerful speaker drivers
- Active noise cancellation (ANC)
- Protective nylon travel sleeve
The Pro 2 by Plantronics are an amazing value for headphones in the $200 price range. Why? They have excellent media control buttons, 30 hours of long lasting battery life, and you can wear them for long stretches at a time because they’re ultra comfortable.
And the quality certainly doesn’t hurt either. The bass boost feature adds a modest yet satisfying amount of additional bass. You’ll love these headphones if you enjoy musical genres that pump the bass like hip-hop, EDM, metal, and funk.
But don’t fear that the heavy bass is going to overwhelm the rest of the audio because this just isn’t true. In fact, all other facets of the sound remain even and balanced, so these headphones work well with every other genre too.
Reviews have two issues with the Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2 headphones that need to be brought to your attention. One problem is they believe these headphones are too bulky. And another complaint is that the headphones are too heavy. This doesn’t seem to be a major grievance across the board. But a few people mentioned it. I personally like larger, bulkier headphones. I feel like the bigger ear cups enhance the listening experience. But you might feel differently, hence the mention of these complaints.
Overall, the Plantronics Wireless Pro 2 Headphones are a great find. They’re really comfortable if you can handle the weight (some prefer a more lightweight design) and the 30 hours of battery life and the responsive controls make these headphones definite frontrunners.
2. Jabra Evolve 65T True Wireless – Best True Wireless
The Jabra Evolve 65T True Wireless headphones are the top true wireless choice because of their superb audio quality and comfortable design.
✔️ What we like: Multiple ear tip sizes blocks out background noise
❌ What we don’t like: Too heavy or bulky for some people
- Reduced audio dropouts
- 5 hours of battery life
- 4 microphone technology
Although the Jabra Evolve 65T doesn’t come equipped with ANC technology, you don’t actually need it. They give multiple sizes of ear tips, so all you need is to use the size that fits you snugly. The snug fit will handle the rest by blocking out unwanted background noise. And believe it or not, this style of passive noise isolation minimizes almost all of the noise in the background, even when you’re in a busy place with plenty of people talking loudly and making noise.
After giving the Jabra Evolve earbuds a full charge, you can expect to get a full 5 hours of steady battery life before you’ll need to charge them again. But even better, the earbuds come with a charging case. This adds an extra 15 hours of charging power to the mix without messing up your listening experience while hanging with friends at the park, or taking a train or bus for a long commute from work or school, or any other situation.
Previous reviews felt the Jabra 65T True Wireless earbuds were too bulky and heavy. I didn’t notice this complaint too often. It seems like these reviewers don’t like earbuds in general, which may have been a big part of the problem. But the heaviness and bulkiness seemed worth mentioning anyway, so I did.
You’ll love the Jabra Evolve 65T True Wireless earbuds because of the fantastic call quality powered by 4 built-in microphones, the 20 hours of battery life including the charging case, and the UC-certified true wireless designation.
3. Sennheiser RS120 Wireless Headphones – Best On-Ear
The Sennheiser RS120 Wireless Headphones are a rare treat because they’re affordable, durable, comfortable, and great for listening to music and watching TV.
✔️ What we like: On-ear headphones with RF wireless
❌ What we don’t like: RF isn’t compatible with Bluetooth technology
- Wireless listening experience
- Connects to TVs, computers, and tablets
- Open-Air design delivers exceptional sound
The RS120 wireless headphones by Sennheiser are very attractive headphones to say the least. They were designed in all black, which is what I personally prefer when I own a pair of headphones. They also have an adjustable headband, angled ear cups, and the padding on the headband is thick and comfortable and provides maximum support.
Although the design is made of plastic, the build quality is actually very exceptional and the material they used is strong and durable. You don’t have to worry about dropping these headphones and watching them shatter into a million pieces once they fall. You can occasionally step on them, sit on them, or drop them and they should survive, but try not to do it too many times! They aren’t made of titanium!
Some people won’t like the fact that these headphones don’t possess Bluetooth technology. The RS120 headphones use lightweight radio frequency or RF for short. This style of frequency makes it possible for these headphones to connect to analog TVs, tablets, PCs, and other audio and video devices. You shouldn’t have trouble connecting them to your smartphone either, but people are so used to Bluetooth that it seems weird connecting to their phone using a different method.
In the end, the Sennheiser RS120 Wireless Headphones are a great choice for on-ear headphones because of their excellent connectivity, their strong and durable design, and balanced and natural sounding audio that provides clear vocals and distinctive sounds.
4. Jaybird Vista True Wireless – Best In-Ear
The Jaybird Vista True Wireless headphones impressed us a great deal with their earthproof design and 16 hours of total battery life with the charging case.
✔️ What we like: Uses cutting-edge JBS1 true wireless Bluetooth tech
❌ What we don’t like: Built-in microphone doesn’t sound clear during phone calls
- 3 sizes interchangeable ear gels
- Infinite EQ control
- Low-profile charging case
The Vista True Wireless Earbuds are a fine choice for anyone who loves earbuds with a lightweight design. Their overall construction and material is not only strong and durable, but it’s the smallest earbuds of this type and the lightest earbuds made by a company known for creating premium products like Jaybird.
Some earbuds and headphones are waterproof, others are sweatproof, and still others are crushproof and dropproof. Guess what? The Vista earbuds from Jaybird are a combination of all of these awesome features, which truly makes them earthproof in nature. They were constructed using IPX7 ratings as their guide, which means you can run with them in the rain, work out and build up a heavy sweat, or drop them, step on them, or otherwise give them a beating and they will still survive and thrive.
The only negative thing that I actually heard about these earbuds is the microphone has given a few reviewers problems. One reviewer went so far as to say that he talked to 10 different people and every one of them said that the audio wasn’t clear coming from the microphone. They couldn’t hear him because it would cut in and out, which is an obvious glaring problem if this is the case. It’s something that Jaybird needs to work on if this is an ongoing problem, but it could also have just been a faulty set of earbuds with a bad microphone.
As you can tell, I’m a big fan of the Jaybird Vista True Wireless in-ear earbuds. They have 16 hours of battery life, connect using the latest Bluetooth technology, and pair easily with just about every Bluetooth device that you can find.
5. Philips Over Ear Headphones – Best Over-Ear
The Philips Over Ear Headphones are a top rated choice because they use ANC technology and make it easy to manage your schedule with Google Assistant.
✔️ What we like: Strong wireless connection with Bluetooth 5.0 tech
❌ What we don’t like: Touch sensitive controls are too sensitive
- Echo cancellation microphone (clear calls)
- Folds flat for compact portability
- Rapid 5 minute charging
The over-ear headphones from Philips are pretty impressive to say the least. According to the advertisement, they have the best active noise cancelling technology out of any headphones in the industry. They use digital ANC to provide a nearly soundproof experience when desired. But the noise cancelling also allows you to turn on awareness mode, which is perfect if you need to hear what’s going on in the background like your boss, your children, or anything else for that matter.
The overall battery life is very impressive and lasts for 30 hours on a full charge. But even better, if you forget to charge your headphones for any reason you can plug them in for five minutes and get two hours of playtime that quickly. And if you can spare 15 minutes, you can charge them for a full six hours, which is pretty remarkable if you ask me.
The Over Ear Philips Headphones also have touch controls on the outside of the ear housing. Unfortunately this isn’t necessarily a good thing because one reviewer said that the touch controls were much too sensitive. She would barely brush against the controls and it would change the track that she was listening to when she didn’t want this to happen. They should work on their touch controls to make them less sensitive.
Otherwise the Philips Over Ear Headphones are an awesome buy under $200 because of the echo cancellation built-in microphone, the long battery life with fast charging capabilities, and the easy connections with Bluetooth 5.0 technology.
6. Sennheiser HD 4.50 Headphones – Best Noise Cancelling
The Sennheiser HD 4.50 Headphones are impressive with their Bluetooth 4.0 and aptX technologies and NoiseGard active noise cancelling to reduce ambient background noise.
✔️ What we like: 2 year warranty and long battery life
❌ What we don’t like: Ear cups material gets hot too quickly
- Crisp and vibrant sound
- Long 19 hour battery life
- Durable plastic material
The HD 4.50 headphones from Sennheiser are an all-around favorite because they have their patented NoiseGard ANC technology built into the headphones. With this technology in place, you can eliminate virtually all of the ambient noise from the background and it works even when competing with the loudest noises from airplanes, crowds on busy streets, and the activity taking place on a hectic construction site.
The headphones also have a feature called Near Field Communication (NFC) that comes in very handy because it makes it easy to connect via Bluetooth with all compatible smart devices. Instead of fumbling with your Bluetooth connection, hoping and praying that it stays stable, this tech will automatically connect via Bluetooth in the most hassle-free and convenient way possible without your personal intervention.
Although the HD 4.50 headphones are very comfortable and the ear cups are made with soft leather material, some reviewers complained about issues with their ears getting too hot. They say that the material on these ear cups heats up very quickly, which makes for a very hot and uncomfortable listening experience over the long term. Some people don’t mind their ears getting warm while listening to headphones. If you don’t like this experience, you’ll undoubtedly benefit from choosing a different headset that doesn’t have ear pads that heat up too quickly.
On the whole, the Sennheiser HD 4.50 Headphones are phenomenal because they create their gorgeous HD signature sound, provide the user with excellent wireless freedom, deliver long battery life and intuitive controls, and they are comfortable to wear as well.
7. Beyerdynamic 459038 DT990 PRO Headphones
The Beyerdynamic 459038 DT990 Pro Headphones have an attractive open back and natural sound and they do not require an additional amplifier.
✔️ What we like: Comfortable to wear during long listening sessions
❌ What we don’t like: Only lasted around five months
- 3 m single-sided coiled cable
- Replaceable velour ear pads
- Strong bass and treble
For those looking for an excellent listening experience with headphones below $200, the DT 990 Pro headphones from Beyerdynamic are an excellent choice. They have an open back design, so they aren’t trying to isolate every incidence of background noise. This makes them more suitable for home use then use on the subway, at the train station, or in another busy place.
Comfort is another great factor users should appreciate. The 459038DT headphones are designed with ear cups that have breathable soft leather. This provides maximum comfort at all times. And since the leather really is breathable, you’ll never have to worry about your ears getting too sweaty or overheating because you get plenty of airflow coming in to keep them cool even when you listen to music or other types of audio for many hours in a row.
The biggest negative is that one reviewer had a bad experience because his headphones only lasted for about five months before he needed to replace them. While I cannot speak for Beyerdynamic, I can say that they go out of their way to keep their customers happy. In fact, they offer their customers a two year guarantee when you purchase any of their unused and brand-new products. So after five months, the reviewer could have contacted the manufacturer to get a replacement. They will either repair the broken headphones or send you a pair of brand-new ones free of charge.
At the end of the day, the Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro Headphones are an excellent choice because of their open back design, exceptional tonal depth and spaciousness, and their extreme comfort that’s perfect for long listening sessions.
A Guide to Choosing Headphones Under $200
Finding the best headphones under $200 can become a real chore if you aren’t fully prepared for the task. That’s why I take time out of my busy schedule to write these detailed reviews. I share this information with my readers so they can avoid doing the research themselves.
On the other hand, if you prefer to research the best headphones under $200 then by all means you should go for it. But be aware that you should focus on specific key areas before you make your purchase.
I want to inform you about the most important things to look for when evaluating headphones, so I’m going to share some critical things to consider below and I hope you use this info to the best of your ability.
Noise Cancellation or Noise Isolating Capabilities
Some headphones really go above and beyond by using ANC noise cancelling technology to improve your listening experience. This technology can either completely remove all of the background noise from your awareness, or remove just enough to create a great listening experience but still allow you to hear what’s going on around you.
Or you can get earbuds that have noise isolating capabilities. While this doesn’t actually work with technology, the earbuds are snug enough that they fit comfortably in your ears canals and block out all the background noise. Look for these features to help improve your overall listening experience.
While this feature isn’t critical for every pair of headphones, it’s definitely important if you’re getting true wireless headphones that you intend to use on a regular basis. Why is this a serious feature? Well, you’d rather not lose your ability to listen to your headphones because you bought a bad pair with poor battery life.
You should look for a pair of headphones that has a minimum of five hours of battery life, but if you can get 24 hours of battery life or more than it’s even better.
Stereo Quality Sound
Sound quality likely doesn’t need to be mentioned but you’d be surprised how many people forget to consider the sound quality because they’re worried about other bells and whistles. It’s certainly nice to have comfortable ear pads, the best Bluetooth connectivity, voice assistant tech, and other great features. But if the sound quality is poor, this will ruin the entire listening experience and you’ll likely toss the headphones in your drawer with the intention to never use them again.
Finding Affordable Headphones Has Never Been Easier
Headphones are an essential part of your everyday listening experience so you deserve to own the best headphones under $200 to deliver tremendous sessions that provide comfort, incredible audio, and a wonderful overall experience.
You’re either going to love making this investment or fear that spending too much money is a problem. That’s why I focused on sharing my favorite inexpensive headphones made with the highest quality but sell for less than $200.
You’ll get high quality audio and a comfortable experience with these recommendations. Plus, you can buy them using cash because they’re really inexpensive, so you don’t have to worry about spending a small fortune while putting yourself in debt.
Use this info to find a great pair of headphones that meet your everyday wants and needs.
- Taotronics SoundLiberty Pro P10 Earbuds Review
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- Over The Ear vs On-Ear Headphones Compared – Which Is Best For You?
- 6 Best Closed Back Headphones Under $200 (Quality & Affordability)
Simon is a music lover, musical instrument player and passionate audio afficionado. When he is not playing the guitar or listening to music he is either eating tacos or snoring too loudly.