Gone are the days when active noise canceling or ANC headphones were a rarity and ruled only by Bose and Sony. Today, the stage has changed for good and if you look hard enough, you’ll find quality headphones with active noise cancellation also in the budget section. Of course, they won’t have the same noise cancellation levels as their premium counterparts. That said, most of them get the job done in denying distracting sounds and noise.
Read on to find our recommendations for the best active noise canceling or ANC headphones under $200. How long will it be, let’s jump well, won’t we?
But before that,
1. Anker Soundcore Life Q20
Anker Soundcore Life Q20
It all depends on how much you expect from your headphones. If you’re looking to block out minor noise while playing the game or while working, the $60 Anker Soundcore Life Q20 makes a good buy. This pair of wireless Bluetooth headphones has surprisingly decent and balanced sound quality, especially compared to other headphones in this price range. The bass has a decent thumb again, something you won’t find in this price range.
Again, it’s worth mentioning that noise cancellation isn’t in the same league as Bose and Sony. If a train heads near you, you’ll be able to hear it.
Also, build quality is decent for around $60 headphones. The headbands curl up quite conveniently, and you’ll be able to toss them in your bag and go. The fit is comfortable, and the memory foam headphones and comfortable headband embrace the deal.
The Soundcore Life Q20 has some controls on the headphones. There’s the manual noise canceling button followed by the volume control buttons, music playback buttons and a Bass Boost button. And did we already say that it comes with voice assistant support too?
Battery life is about 30 hours with ANC, and doubles if you decide to keep ANC off.
2. Cowin E7 Active Noise Cancel Headphones
Cowin E7 Active Noise Cancelar Headphones
Another pair of affordable wireless headphones with active noise cancellation is the Cowin E7. This pair of headphones features a full sleek design with an adjustable headband, faux leather earpads and a 30-hour battery life. On top of that, these headphones have a great on-board noise canceling mechanism and do a good job of negating ambient sounds even at low volumes. These features make it perfect to use when you’re studying or meditating in the middle of a busy day.
Sound quality is good enough for casual listening. Although you don’t delve deep into the intricacies of tones, chances are you’ll be satisfied.
You will find buttons for playback, Bluetooth and NC on the headset. Even though they are easy to access, the placement is pretty tight, and it can take a while to get used to them.
On the bright side, the break is great and the 30-hour game means you can be pretty sure you’re running out of money. What’s more, there’s a bit of fast charging technology involved as well. Just 10 minutes of loading will get you 45 minutes of play time.
On the underside, the headphone’s finish isn’t impressive.
3. Plantronics BackBeat PRO 2 SE
Plantronics BackBeat PRO 2 SE
Plantronics returns with a pair of affordable wireless headphones. The successor to the popular BackBeat Pro, BackBeat Pro 2 SE managed to fix the holes that plagued the previous version. For one, BackBeat Pro 2 is compact and lightweight, making them easy to take for long periods. And the quilted diadem and headphones further embrace the business.
In performance, BackBeat Pro follows the path of its predecessor and manages to deliver clean, balanced audio with pronounced bass. Yes, double bass, this is for you.
Controls are easy to access and manage. The volume rockers are in your ears and you simply have to turn the counter to reach your desired sound volume. Like its counterparts above, you’ll find a switch to ANC. Speaking of ANC, it manages to block out ambient noise completely. It also packs a handy OpenMic knob, which lets you adjust the ambient noise level, which is a plus.
The good news is that you can change the ANC feature even when they are connected, thus saving precious battery juice. Speaking of battery life, these packs over 24 hours of battery juice. On the downside, BackBeat Pro 2 doesn’t pack NFC like its previous counterpart. When it comes to what these headphones look like, we’ll let you be the judge.
Plantronics BackBeat PRO 2 SE headphones are very popular on Amazon. Fakespot estimates that 77% of these reviews are trustworthy and can be trusted.
4. Sony Noise Cancel Headphones WHH-CH710N
Sony Noise Cancel Headphones WHH-CH710N
If you don’t want to spend as high as $200 on a pair of headphones, the average to mid-priced Sony WH-CH710N makes a good buy. Noise cancellation is good for the price and even cancels out noise from nearby objects. The soft-fill of the headphones also plays a big part in canceling out noise. At the same time, the sound quality is good for the price. It’s nice to listen to a mellow bass, meaning you won’t be overwhelmed by the boom bass.
The Sony WH-CH710N brings Bluetooth 5.0 to the table along with support for the Bluetooth AAC codec (no LDAC, sorry). Along with this you will get USB-C fast charging. About 10 minutes on the charger will buy you 60-minute playtime.
Speaking of battery life, here you get a solid 35 hours of battery life. Great, right? Best of all, you can also go the cable route if you don’t want to get into matchmaking annotations.
All controls are in the headset, along with the toggle to turn off noise cancellation. There’s also an ingenious environment mode you can use if you want to be aware of your surroundings.
However, the looks of the Sony WH-CH710N can be described as mediocre, thanks to the plastiky body. There are no hinges and the diadem does not bend in wards, which makes it a little difficult to deal with the portability perspective. On the bright side, they’re extremely light and weigh just 141 grams, less than today’s flagship smartphones (** wink wink * *).
WHH-CH710N supports voice assistants like Google Assistant and Siri.
5. Sennheiser HD 450BT
Sennheiser HD 450BT
The Sennheiser HD 450BT costs around $50 more than its Sony counterpart and offers a better audio and noise canceling experience. Again, we’d like to iterate that NC isn’t as good as its pricier equivalents, but for $200, it gets the job done satisfactorily. At the same time, these noise canceling headphones also feature Bluetooth 5.0 and support AAC, AptX and SBC Bluetooth codecs. And that’s not all. The headphones are memory shaped and make for a comfortable experience while listening to your favorite music.
Noise cancellation is solid and blocks out noise, humidity and even low volumes at volumes.
As we noted earlier, the audio performance is slightly better than Sony headphones. They’re cool to listen to, all thanks to the absence of a super-powered bass.
Like most of their previous counterparts, these can also be used as wired headphones. The best part is that you can have NC enabled when connected. All controls are on the headphones, and along with buttons for track management and volume management, you’ll also find a dedicated voice assistant button.
And the 30-hour battery life will sweeten the deal. Simply put, you don’t have to worry about the battery running out in the short term. Most importantly, the Sennheiser HD 450BT looks stylish and is comfortable to wear, and the memory shape memory headphones add to the comfort quotient.
Block all noise
These were some of the affordable headsets with ANC. If you’re willing to go the wireless headphones route, you can check out your Sony WF-1000XM3 or Sony WF-SP800N. The SP800N is the affordable option of the two and offers a good sound profile. Battery life is around 9 hours on the ANC with the charging case it provides and additional charging cycle.