Over-the-ear headphones that will be music to your ears

Over-the-ear headphones that will be music to your ears

Headphones you can count on to sound great.

Headphones you can count on to sound great. (David Nicolai via Unsplash/)

From enhanced bass response and volume to increased sound isolation, there are countless reasons why over-the-ear headphones reign supreme when you want the most out of your music collection. Due to the size of their speaker enclosures and drivers, over-ear headphones in particular make for a wider and more realistic listening experience that has an effect similar to sitting in front of stereo speakers. Because the lips of these designs fall around and outside your ears, they stay cleaner longer than earbuds and provide a more intimate and sealed-off experience that’s ideal for use in noisy environments. If sound quality and listening comfort are among your criteria in a pair of headphones, but you don’t want to sacrifice portability and ease of use, this is a great place to start.

Here’s a list of our favorite over-ear headphones currently on the market.

Best overall: Shure AONIC 50 Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones

Onboard controls right at your fingertips.

Onboard controls right at your fingertips. (Amazon/)

Here’s a robust pair of over-ear headphones from veteran audio manufacturers Shure that make for a rugged and versatile all-around choice. They’re designed for foldable portability combined with a comfortable, enclosing fit and feature noise-canceling tech that you can turn on and off with the flip of a switch. Even though they’re wireless by design, these headphones are fully compatible with 3.5-millimeter analog audio and USB-C wired audio inputs, and their speakers are driven by a premium amplifier that supports multiple Bluetooth codecs including AAC and aptX HD. On top of all this, they’re packed with a 20-hour-life battery so you can travel comfortably knowing you won’t have to go without your tunes.

Best voice-controlled: Bose QuietComfort 35 II Wireless Bluetooth Headphones

Rocks a 20-hour battery and offers firmware updates via the app.

Rocks a 20-hour battery and offers firmware updates via the app. (Amazon/)

These noise-canceling headphones from Bose offer a comfortable, hands-free user experience that’s ideal for delivering crystal-clear phone calls, music, and more on the go or in busy work environments. They pair up to your phone or another device via Bluetooth and are fully voice-control compatible with Alexa, allowing users to take control of their listening experience without lifting a finger. The onboard dual-microphone system ensures excellent ambient sound rejection and focuses on voice during calls, and the noise-canceling feature operates at three different levels at your discretion.

Most stylish: Skullcandy Crusher Evo Wireless Over-Ear Headphones

Compact travel case included.

Compact travel case included. (Amazon/)

If sleek, clean lines are your thing, these Crusher Evo wireless over-ear headphones pack style in spades. Their eye-pleasing and understated foldable exterior belie the gold mine of advanced technology packed inside, including a 40-hour battery, fully adjustable bass response, personalized sound tailoring via the Skullcandy app, and built-in locating technology from Tile that allows you to “ring” your headphones if you misplace them. The onboard quick-charging tech can deliver around four hours of playtime with a 10-minute charge, too, so no more regrets if you forget to charge up before a trip.

Budget pick: Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Hybrid Active Noise Cancelling Headphones

Certified hi-res audio delivered in an affordable package.

Certified hi-res audio delivered in an affordable package. (Amazon/)

Comfy memory foam ear cups and a battery life of up to 60 hours make this pair of headphones from Anker Soundcore a cost-effective and versatile over-ear solution for listeners on a budget. It’s Bluetooth 5-compatible and delivers active noise-canceling for phone calls and music listening using an array of four onboard microphones. Soundcore’s BassUp technology actively monitors your music and enhances bass response as you listen to deliver intense beats, and the speakers’ frequency response features extended treble that stretches up to 40 kilohertz. On the rare occasion that your battery life runs low, the Q20′s offer 3.5-millimeter wired AUX input support for unlimited listening.

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