2021 has been a year for the books! As we head into the new year, many people are completely transitioning to working from their home office, prompting an upgrade in headphone gear. This list will help you find the best headphones for laptops on the market that fit your certain niche.
If you spend a lot of time making phone calls, you may want to opt for wireless Bluetooth headphones with noise cancellation. This will give you more mobile flexibility, such as going to get something to drink or eat but not wanting to stop what you’re doing. If you’re more of a gamer you’ll want something with a good external mic.
Wired or wireless? Although wired headphones usually cost less and can be more efficient because of their simplicity, they can also be great for long Netflix binges. If this sounds like it would suit you better, stick with the classic wired headset. However, if you’re a lot more active and find yourself making snack and bathroom trips, then wireless headsets are right up your alley.
Lucky for you we got you covered. We’ll point you to some of the best headphones for laptops in 2021.
13 Best Headphones For Laptops In 2021
1. Picun Wired Headphones
Picun headphones are great for technology-friendly people because of their simplicity. The in-line microphone will let you talk with friends and family if your hands are tied up with something else. They also have a 47-inch long braided cord, durable for everyday use and no tangles.
- 6.98 ounces
- 3.5mm headphone jack
- Dual 40mm drivers
Sample Customer Review… These are very light and comfortable headphones. The cushions are soft, I could have these on for hours and they don’t irritate me. It does have a plastic material feel, as long as you’re not too rough or drop them repeatedly they should last. There was no hassle trying to get it to pair.
Once the Bluetooth was set, they instantly paired to my Galaxy S9 as soon as I flipped the on-switch. The sound quality is really good for the price too. It has deep bass and clear highs and mids. The quality stays the same even in wired mode. It is as noise-canceling as it claims to be. The buttons are easy to use and it has a built-in mic, so I can answer calls easily. (In Wired mode the Bluetooth shuts off so the buttons on the side don’t work. You can still answer calls using the mic though).
The battery life is pretty decent. It has about a couple of hours of playtime (the longest I’ve had the headphones connected w/o charging was about 9 hrs) and it took about 2 hours to fully charge. So far this is one of my favorite purchases!Read more reviews on Amazon.com
2. Sony WH-1000XM4
With industry-leading noise-canceling ability, these Sony headphones will last you a full day with up to 30 hours of battery life. Sony’s programmed advanced technologies have given new meaning to the word simple, with built-in Alexa and speak-to-chat technology that will automatically reduce the outside volume during phone conversations.
- 3.5mm x 1 headphones jack
- Voice control
- Multi-device pairing
Sample Customer Review… I really enjoy this headset! It is expensive but worth it! It feels very light on your head. You can immediately notice some noise cancellation when you put the headset on even without it being powered up. The sound quality is top-notch. One of my favorite features is being able to cover the right ear with your hand and it will immediately lower the volume so you can have a conversation with someone and it will return back to regular volume immediately once you stop covering it.
The 30-hour battery life is amazing! It is very easy to control the volume/skip song with the swipe feature on the right ear. One thing which I think Sony will implement in the future is having the carrying case provide extra battery like what was just introduced with the Bose 700 and has been a feature for wireless earbuds.Read more reviews on Amazon.com
3. Marshall Headphones
These headphones come with a detachable cord and a built-in microphone. Marshall is known for simplicity and high quality. They’ve taken a few steps back in the past year with their new launches, but these are a classic that’s great for using anywhere at any time.
- 6.28 ounces
- 3.5mm headphones jack
- 40mm dynamic drivers
Sample Customer Review… The earpieces are a little small, but the sound quality makes up for it! It makes all the music you listen to sound like you’re hearing it live! It’s made by the Marshall Amplifier company which is known for its amazing sound and the crunch of its full stacks. The hard shell protective case is sold separately and is very cheap.
The headphones come with a charging cord and auxiliary cord with a built-in microphone for phone use that also doubles as a remote when listening to music! The headphones rarely ever need a charge, the battery charges to use for 30 plus hours of headphone use. It’s worth it! I’ve had the headphones for a couple of months and only charged them twice. I listen to music every day and I wanted a set of headphones to last.
I burn quickly through cheap headphones and I thought this would be a nice investment. I now recommend these headphones to anybody and everybody that appreciates the power of music. It’s an excellent gift for musicians. I bought a pair for my dad and brother and they absolutely love them! I, myself, own two pairs out of three and I can’t get over the sound quality!Read more reviews on Amazon.com
4. Sennheiser HDR 175
These lightweight headphones are built for comfort, simplicity, and a great listening experience at a fair price. If you’re into gaming on your laptop and enjoy listening to music just as much, this would be a good suggestion. These are one of the best headphones for laptops as they are lightweight and perfect for casual listening.
- 310 grams
- 17Hz – 22kHz frequency range
- RF connectivity
Sample Customer Review… I tried several brands of wireless headsets and these are the best by far. The transmitter supports two headsets so my wife and I can both listen at the same time. The radio transmission has better sound and range than the Bluetooth sets I tried. I have had Sennheiser products before and have an analog set of model RS-120s that are about 10 years old.
These work quite well from the optical output of my TV and the sound is clean and works well with soundtracks that have low volume, poorly mixed dialog. The ear cups are large enough to fully enclose your ears and comfortable enough for hours of constant listening. I would buy these again without hesitation.Read more reviews on Amazon.com
5. Bose 700 Noise Cancelling Headphones
These are great for listening to your music, podcasts, and phone calls. The Bose 700 comes with 11 different levels of active noise canceling so you can listen to everything you need to without any distractions. Although these Bose headphones are a bit heavy, they still may be great for you if you’re on the move often. They also come with easy access to Alexa and Google play. One of the best things about these headphones is the unrivaled voice feature that keeps your voice quality clear even with wind for foreign background noise.
- 8.8 ounces
- 11 levels of noise cancelation
- Stainless steel
Sample Customer Review… I’m blown away by these headphones and how clear the sound is. The noise cancelation is the best I’ve ever experienced, I can’t hear the keys as I type this review now. You get what you pay for, these are exceptional headphones and worth the price if you want quality sound and great noise cancelation. You can control the volume and noise cancelation level via your phone, app, and headphones themselves.Read more reviews at Amazon.com
6. Apple AirPods Max
The new Apple AirPods are great for those are who hardcore Apple fans to the core. The new AirPods Max that Apple rolled out before the holidays were widely sought out for the smooth, space gray design and that magical touch that apple seems to always put on their products. The Airpods come with an expensive price tag, but they received a 4.5 pulse score out of 5 and are a top choice for the best headphones for laptops.
- Lightning headphones jack
- 1 meter cable
- Bluetooth and NFC connectivity
Sample Customer Review… Noise cancellation absolutely top tier. I didn’t find weight to be an issue as I mostly listen using over-ears while sitting down and don’t move around a ton. The range for Bluetooth is decent– I can walk all over my home. Very comfortable and the music quality is superb for Bluetooth/wireless. Since I listen to Spotify, it is the best quality you’ll get out of wireless in my opinion.
The transparency mode is pretty darn good but if your music is too loud you may still have issues hearing others talk of course. The price is absurdly high but that’s Apple for you. But they are exactly what they advertised. Quality built product, sound, noise cancel, comfort. But you will benefit most if you already use some Apple products like an iPhone; otherwise, just get the Sony MX4’s which are the closest comparable noise-canceling earphones you’ll get.
I don’t regret spending as I’ve been using them nonstop, never have to turn the volume all the way up as it gets plenty loud at 75-80% and the battery lasts an extremely long time.Read more reviews on Amazon.com
7. Avantree 4189 Wireless Headphones
The Avantree 4189 wireless headphones are perfect for long gaming or Netflix binges! The ultra-long playtime feature was specifically designed for use up to 40 hours. You can also pair two sets of these headphones together and watch T.V. with a friend or family member.
- 196 grams
- 7.48 x 6.69 x 3.15 in.
- Range up to 100ft.
Sample Customer Review… Automatically pairs every time they are turned on! Easy to install! Everything you need to install in the box (several different cables included to match every TV connection configuration!) Great sound and very comfortable! I like the small transmitter for the TV and the simple way to charge the headphones. NO bulky stand or cradle with this system!
I do not notice ANY lag time with the sound transmission. This is the first purchase of any TV headphone system I have ever purchased. This system is a home run. I have only used it for less than a week, but at this point, I am very satisfied with this product. Some systems are much more expensive, but I don’t know what they could offer better than this system.Read more reviews on Amazon.com
8. Cowin E7 Wireless Headphones
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The Cowin E7 wireless headphones are some of the best traveling headphones on the market. With an extra-long life span of 30 hours per charge on Bluetooth mode, these make great headphones for long car rides, playing guitar, and video conferences.
- 3.5mm audio cable
- 45mm drivers
- 90-degree rotating ear cups
- 30-hour battery life
Sample Customer Review… This is an elegant set of headphones for a very reasonable price! I use them on my computer and they sound great. They were easy to pair with my computer via Bluetooth. They are easy to adjust and they cancel out background noise extremely well. The headphones are comfortable to wear and the quality of sound is excellent. I am happy with this purchase and I would recommend them to others.Read more reviews on Amazon.com
9. Jabra Elite 45h
The Jabra Elite 45h headphones are high in sound quality and comfort and have a variety of helpful, user-adjustable features like voice assistant support. At full charge, the Elite 45h gives you 50 hours of continuous playtime. The audio performance can even be calibrated in the Jabra Sound+ app. These headphones are also some of the best when it comes to fast charging; just a 15-minute charge grants you 10 hours of use. With the slim, cushiony design, dependent charge, and high sound quality, you can wear and use these headphones for hours on end.
- Lightweight and compact, 8.82 x 7.2 x 1.97”, 6 ounces
- Bluetooth range 40ft
- Battery life 50hrs
- 40 mm speakers
Sample Customer Review… Very comfortable. I’ve worn them for hours with no ear pressure discomfort at all. They weigh less than 6 oz and have a padded headrest. Longest battery life. After two days of use, I’m down to 88% power. Great sound, made even better by a really cool feature unique among the tested units: There’s a phone app that allows you to tweak the sound and features.
It even has a hearing test that independently tests each of your ears (you know…press the button if you hear the tone) and tailors the headphones to your hearing profile. On top of this are a five-band equalizer, the ability to adjust how long they stay on (including indefinitely), and other features. While these features are only available via smartphone, your settings remain in the headphones while using them with a computer.Read more reviews on Amazon.com
10. SoundMagic E11C Wired Earbuds
Portability is key when looking for quality headphones for a good price, and it doesn’t hurt if they’re as stylish as these SoundMagic earbuds. SoundMagic E11C delivers a balanced sound performance that comes at a great price for those with a budget. These are perfect for Zoom meetings and Skype calls, and since many activities remain online, these could be perfect if you’re constantly talking to colleagues on your laptop.
- 10mm dynamic drivers
- Tangle-resistent cable
Sample Customer Review… The single best-sounding buds I’ve used. The closest in quality I’ve had would be Audio Technica ATH-M40x or Samson SR850s both of which are full-size headphones. They do feel more base-heavy than the other two but certainly not to a bad degree. They’re not as open as the SRs either but it’s to be expected. The audio however does feel more vibrant from these and makes for a more enjoyable listing experience.
Placing them directly next to Apple earphones, these entirely blow them away in every area, offering more clarity, wider soundstage, and punchier bass and crisper highs. For the price, there is none better and they’ve become my daily drivers for both computer and outdoor use. On the matter of outdoor use, the sound isolation is very good. It’s not active so it’s by no means perfect but it does a good job keeping the music to yourself and blocking or muting the more distracting sounds.
Using them on a busy bus is no issue at all. They’re also highly durable with them going through plenty of beating over the past year. I often pair mine up with a Fiio M3K lossless audio player but with how easy they are to drive any phone can make full use of them. Cannot recommend enough and when they finally need replacing I’ll be getting SoundMagics again!Read more reviews on Amazon.com
11. 1MORE Triple Driver In-Ear Headphones
1MORE Triple Driver In-Ear headphones have a sleek and classy design, coming in both gold and silver. The earbuds sit nicely and comfortably in the ear due to the smart design. These headphones come with an in-line remote control that works with iOS and Android. This control allows you to change the volume, song selection, and take calls. Tuned by a Grammy Award-winning sound engineer and offering passive sound isolation, you can be sure that these headphones will give you the sound experience you pay for.
- 3.5mm headphones jack
- 0.05 pounds
- Bluetooth and NFC connectivity
- Three drivers / dynamic driver
- Oblique angled ear fittings
Sample Customer Review… I had expected good sound, but I was blown away by the clarity and response these earphones were able to output. The sound on these headphones is some of the best I have heard in the sub-500 dollar price range. Instrument separation is brilliant, it doesn’t sound like one source coming into your ears blended together, even in crowded orchestral music individual sounds are isolated and this results in unrivaled clarity.
Bass’s response is good as well. Although by no means headphones for people who are addicted to skull rocking bass drops, the low end is tight and clear and most importantly doesn’t have that effect where the bass leaks around and muddies up the rest of the sound.Read more reviews on Amazon.com
12. BlueParrot 550XT
The BlueParrott 550XT is great if you make a lot of phone calls daily and even has a voice-controlled calls feature, so if your hands aren’t free at the moment you can use your voice to make calls, access GPS, and play music all while you concentrate on your task. The BlueParrott 550XT has the volume and power button located out the outside of the right ear for easy mid-game use.
- USB headphones jack
- Bluetooth and NFC connectivity
- Voice control
Sample Customer Review… We’ve owned several Blue Parrot headsets and my husband has tried Plantronics and other brands. He ultimately always comes back to the Blue Parrot headsets as they seem to be the best quality.Read more reviews from Amazon.com
13. NuraLoop Bluetooth Earbuds
NuraLoop earbuds are truly “plug and play.” Just turn them on, and they will connect to your Bluetooth device automatically! They have active noise canceling and a personalized sound style that will automatically learn and adapt to your hearing. NuraLoop earbuds will last you almost a whole day of full listening with a 16-hour full charge battery life.
- 0.22 kg
- All day battery
- Personalized sound
Sample Customer Review… As a longtime Sennheiser and 1More user, I’ve been absolutely blown away by the sound quality and ease of use of these Nuraloops. From the easy setup to the incredible sound I’m an instant convert to Nura. Across the tonal range, everything I’ve listened to sounds new, fun, and accurate. Great bass, nice soundstage, full miss, and clear highs without harsh sibilance. I’ve read a lot of “for this price” they sound great… But I haven’t heard in-ear headphones at any price that beat these… Plus they’re comfortable and workout-ready.Read more reviews on Amazon.com
Buying Guide: Things to Consider When Purchasing Headphones for Laptops
When it comes to purchasing new headphones, sound quality is the most important thing to look for. Keep in mind, sound quality can be subjective. Do you prefer a well-rounded sound, or a crisp, detailed sound? Do you enjoy heavy bass? Do you want background noise-canceling?
Different headphones are made to cater to these needs. For example, headphones with dynamic drivers tend to have a more bass-heavy sound. Knowing the kind of sound experience you want and need in a set of headphones narrows your search and ensures your satisfaction with your final purchase.
Design and Comfort
Whether you plan on using your new headphones for business or leisure, comfort is a must. What kind of earbud design are you looking for? In-ear earbuds aren’t as bulky, are usually smaller and easier to transport, but can sometimes fall out of your ears.
On-ear headphones rest flat on your ear. Like in-ear earbuds, they tend to be smaller and easy to transport. However, since they press against your ear, they may not be ideal for long-term use in regard to comfort.
Over-ear headphones have a perimeter ring of padding around the cup so it sits around your ear, rather than on it or in it. For this reason, this design tends to be most comfortable with long-term use. These headphones can better block out background noise as well. There’s also the choice between open-back and closed-back earphones. Closed-back helps to further isolate sound. Open-back ear cups have a vented exterior casing, which allows for some sound to escape. This can create a wider sound profile, but those around you can hear the audio leakage.
Connectivity and Adaptability
The two most basic categories of headphones are wireless or wired. When it comes to wired headphones, you may want to consider the type of headphone jack, and if it comes with or has a headphone jack adapter available as well. You should also consider the length of the headphone cord and if it can be swapped out for shorter or longer ones if need be.
As for wireless headphones, the top consideration should be connectivity. You want to make sure your wireless headphones aren’t going to have audio dropouts or disconnections due to interference. You should also consider battery life and what energy source the headphones have. Do they charge, or do they require batteries? How long do they last before dying, and, if they charge, how long does it take to reach full power again?
Treat yourself by getting a pair of headphones from this list we made. Any pair of headphones listed could be a perfect match for you. Hopefully, you now have better insight on which wired or wireless headphones would be best suitable for you, and you know more about the best headphones for laptops on the market.
Written by Ron Alexander and Megan Kelly
Edited by Jack Leduc
Written by Ron Hare and Megan Kelly