There’s a standard pair of headphones then there’s also the best budget noise cancelling headphones. If you think that it will cost you an arm and leg to own a pair of these cans, think again, because there are what we call the best budget noise cancelling headphones. In this article, we will be providing answers to the question – what are the best cheap noise cancelling headphones?

When choosing the best budget noise cancelling headphones, you need to consider a lot factors such as battery life, audio performance, call quality, comfort and fit, Bluetooth range, and of course, effectiveness of noise cancellation or noise reduction. Remember, considering budget models does not necessarily mean mediocre performance linked to its low price. In this article, we will be featuring the best budget noise cancelling headphones along with the functions and features each model delivers.

Best Budget Noise Cancelling Headphones: Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC

What We Like:

  • 19 hours battery life
  • User friendly control

What We Don’t Like:

  • ANC feature falters in airplanes

The Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC is one of the top picks when it comes to the best budget noise cancelling headphones in the market. The audio of this model has clean, crisp with discernible lows and highs, which is quite impressive for a wireless headphone.

You also get a good bang for your buck with the exclusive NoiseGard technology that is very effective in blocking out ambient sounds. However, you can still expect to hear some sort of engine rumbling or droning when you are on a flight. The Active NC feature also doesn’t affect the sound profile too much and only discerning audiophiles can notice the discreet differences in terms of audio quality. One of the admirable reviews of this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones is the fact that it looks really sleek and minimalist despite its wallet friendly price. The design has a matte-black plastic wrapped over the headphones, with the silver accented logo serving as an attractive centerpiece. Think of it as baller headphones sold at a lower price, more friendly than the competition, such as Sony and Bose.

Among all of the contenders for the best budget noise cancelling headphones, Sennheiser HD 4.50 BTNC is the model that looks and feels like a premium pair. Plus, the rechargeable wireless design makes it a great pick and the 19 hours battery life is more than just a bonus.

Best Budget Noise Cancelling Headphones: Sony WF-1000XM3 Earbuds

What We Like:

  • Outstanding noise cancellation
  • Compatible with Sony Connect app
  • Wireless

What We Don’t Like:

  • Wobbly touch controls

Sony has been known to be one of the noise cancelling staples, hence we included the WF-1000xM3 in our list for the best budget noise cancelling headphones in the wireless category. This model has better Active Noise Cancelling, better audio and the battery life can even compete with the AirPods Pro, making it hard to believe that it belongs to the $200 price points.

The bass of this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones is well balanced, giving music a strong and impactful presence but not getting too overpowering on the ears. Users can also enjoy the Sony Connect app to adjust sound and noise cancellation, although some find it unnecessary because the default settings already give a more than satisfactory performance. The noise cancellation tech of this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones effectively minimizes ambient sound across the frequency spectrum, giving its users a great listening experience. Some of the drawbacks of the Sony WH-1000xM3 fall on its touch controls and call quality. Overall, this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones doesn’t cost a fortune to give its users a premium listening experience.

Best Budget Noise Cancelling Headphones: Jabra Elite 85h

What We Like:

  • Impressive battery life at 36 hours
  • Tri-digital assistant support – Siri, Google Assistant, Alexa

What We Don’t Like:

  • Heavy and bulky
  • Listening mode may cause some distortion

Jabra Elite 85h is considered to be one of the best budget noise cancelling headphones that offers a lot of functionality for its low price point. Consider this as an inexpensive purchase with premium features. The Jabra Elite 85h has eight microphones that do a great job in noise reduction and neutralization to phase out distractions so users can enjoy a clear and uninterrupted phone call conversation.

Jabra’s entry for the best budget noise cancelling headphones also delivers great speech recognition to access AI assistant support like Alexa, Google Assistant or Siri. We also found the intuitive performance and responsive smart controls (on-ear detection to play/pause music, automatic power on/off) to be of great value for your dollar.

This pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones from Jabra also offers exceptional performance when it comes to audio and battery life. Whether you are planning to use this for game streaming, watching your favorite show on TVs, or simply as an audio companion for your travel, this is a great choice within a reasonable price point and it can really do its job. Sound reproduction is great and you don’t need to charge it every so often because it can support up to 40 hours of playtime. 

If there’s a downside to this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones, it would have to be its bass that has the tendency to distort sounds when the HearThrough Mode is enabled. The bulky and heavy design can also be a downer, but there’s nothing like a commuter or traveler can’t bear.

Best Budget Noise Cancelling Headphones: Sony WH-CH710N Wireless Noise Canceling Headphones

What We Like:

  • Can work in passive mode

What We Don’t Like:

  • plastic-looking build
  • AINC not as good as ANC

Sony has an image of producing headsets that are high quality and sold at mid-range price points. The Sony WH-CH710N model offers a unique feature called the Artificial Intelligence Noise Cancellation or AINC. This contender for the best budget noise cancelling headphones is a great bargain, offering crisp sounding mids, deep bass and 35 hours of playback time. This can also be used wired if you want to preserve power, which is a very useful alternative rather than sticking your nose in a book if you are in an airplane or stuck in traffic.

This pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones offer a smart noise reduction feature that is aimed to minimize the background noise. However, when compared to the active noise cancellation feature of the WH-1000xM3, the smart noise reduction feature of the CH710N is clearly inferior. Hearing loud TVs and chatty neighbors can be lessened when you use the Sony CH-710N but the sounds of washing machines and loud power tools cans till seep in.

A glaring drawback to this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones is its plastic frame which isn’t really pleasing to the eyes. For lack of better words, it looks cheap and unlike other contenders included in the list of the best budget noise cancelling headphones, it doesn’t look premium at all. However, if you just intend to use this in the office or at home, this is already an above average choice.

Best Budget Noise Cancelling Headphones: Anker Soundcore Life Q20 Wireless ANC Headphones

What We Like:

  • 50 feet Bluetooth range
  • Sleek and minimalist design

What We Don’t Like:

  • Poor sound quality in wired mode

Some believe that it’s quite impossible to enjoy high quality audio even with the best budget noise cancelling headphones. On the contrary, there are actually so many decent products that belong in the best budget noise cancelling headphones. Whether you love to listen to hip-hop, classical music or podcasts on your smartphone, there will surely be a product that can cater to your audio needs. 

Such is the Anker Life Q20 Wireless that offers incredible audio, effective noise cancellation and impressive battery life. This pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones from Anker comes with custom 40mm drivers to ensure that the sound produced is rich and powerful – bass is rich and booming, the vocal and mid-range frequencies are not muffled.

As mentioned, the battery life of this model puts it as one of the strong contenders for the best budget noise cancelling headphones. It offers up to 40 hours of playback on a full charge, and it can even extend for up to 60 hours when the Active Noise Cancellation feature is turned off. Speaking of ANC, according to Anker, these headphones realistically can block out up to 90% of ambient sounds but upon testing and based on several reviews from users, it can only block up to 70% of environmental sounds or noises. Still not bad for a product that belongs to the best budget noise cancelling headphones.

One drawback of Anker’s entry for the best budget noise cancelling headphones is the product’s inability to filter out proximate noises such as chatter of your officemate right next to your desk or the clickety clackety sounds of a keyboard. You may also want to lessen the use of the aux cable that comes along with the product because it can hinder or distort audio performance. Overall, the functionality and features of the Anker Life Q20 Wireless is good value for your money.

Best Budget Noise Cancelling Headphones: Plantronics BackBeat Go 810

What We Like:

  • Companion app has plenty of features

What We Don’t Like:

  • ANC modes may produce crackly noises in the background

Plantronics BackBeat Go 810 is considered to be a solid entry-level choice for audiophiles who are looking for reliable noise cancellation but can offer at least the same performance with the Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2 SE. With this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones, the bass is really heavy and the lows are responsive and prominent.

Not all products that are included in the list of best budget noise cancelling headphones come with a companion app, but fortunately, the Plantronics BackBeat Go 810 supports the brand’s companion app. Users can EQ the sound and can also customize voice output for phone calls. The battery life of the Plantronics BackBeat Go 810 gives 22 hours playback time with ANC mode on and 28 hours when used in standard mode.

This pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones also offers two ANC modes – High and Low – each engineered to handle ambient noise in various settings. Be careful in choosing the ANC mode because the built-in microphone actually picks up a lot of noise especially when the unit is used outdoors. There are instances when the connectivity and controls may become finicky, but overall, this is one of the best budget noise cancelling headphones in the market.

Best Budget Noise Cancelling Headphones: AKG N700NC

What We Like:

  • Professional design

What We Don’t Like:

  • Sound bleeds when played in high levels

Whoever said that the best budget noise cancelling headphones don’t offer a sleek and professional look? With the AKG N700NC, you’ll be surely in awe with its sleek and upscale design combined with its incredible soundstage. AKG is known to be a pro-audio heritage brand, and their budget entry proudly raises the brand’s flag with its elite sound performance, making it hard to believe that it actually belongs to the best budget noise cancelling headphones category.

The frequencies are balanced enough to produce detailed and clean audio and the AKG companion app also allows users to tweak different EQ settings to suit their personal preferences. The noise cancelling technology is also effective in blocking out ambient noises like chitchats from nearby people. At 23 hours battery life, this is considered to be a lackluster feature compared to other brands included in our list of best budget noise cancelling headphones. 

Some drawbacks of this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones include poor performance when used in listening modes and high sound leakage that tends to bleed and draw unwanted attention in public places. You may want to tone down the volume when you are in a quiet place such as a coffee shop or a public library because the sound may bleed and may really cause some heads to turn. Overall, this is a good choice among the products featured as best budget noise cancelling headphones. If you don’t really play your music at high levels, then you can definitely enjoy this masterpiece from AKG.

Best Budget Noise Cancelling Headphones: Audio-Technica ATH-ANC9

What We Like:

  • Comfortable
  • Three ANC modes

What We Don’t Like:

  • Needs AAA battery for ANC to run

The best budget noise cancelling headphones don’t only provide protection against ambient noises but they should also offer a great listening experience when the ANC feature isn’t being used. Fortunately, Audio-Technica ATH-ANC9 checks all the boxes with its solid audio and high comfort levels. Admittedly, this model is older than the other models in our list of the best budget noise cancelling headphones but it can be considered as an oldie but a goodie.

The headband and the memory foam in the ear cups don’t put too much pressure on the head and ears so you can use this for long periods without getting a headache. In terms of sound quality, this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones offer a balanced sound and also give its users three ANC modes to choose from – for studying, for airplanes and for noisy offices. Each mode is effective but most people prefer to use the Airplane Mode.

If there’s one drawback that this pair of best budget noise cancelling headphones has, it would be the fact that it is powered by AAA batteries instead of a rechargeable internal battery just like what most modern ANC headphones have. Of course, this is quite understandable considering that this model is a bit old, but as we mentioned earlier, this is actually an oldie but a goodie, that is if you are willing to overlook the AAA batteries.

Best Budget Noise Cancelling Headphones: Bose 700

What We Like:

  • Lightweight, easy to use
  • Minimalist design

What We Don’t Like:

  • Pricey for the budget range

First of all, the fact that we featured the Bose 700 as the last item on our list for the best budget noise cancelling headphones is because it is borderline mid-range to pricey. Sold at $349, it’s far from the price of other brands featured here that have below $100 price tags. 

If you are allergic to plastic-y models such as the Sony WH-CH710N that’s also featured in our list of the best budget noise cancelling headphones, you’ll be delighted by the build and frame of the Bose 700. The earcups are still comfortably and padded but the material is a bit stiffer than other Sony products. If you are like the princess from the Princess and the Pea that can easily detect any signs of discomfort, you may want to take a raincheck on this product.

Battery life is considered average at 20 hours. Again, this may not be considered as a legit entry to the best budget noise cancelling headphones, but if you’ve got some extra dollars there and you’re in the mood to splurge, this is a good choice. If given the chance to choose between Sony WH-1000XM3, AKG N700NC or Bose 700, we would choose either of the first two.

So that concludes our list for the best budget noise cancelling headphones. We hope that this article has helped you in choosing the best budget noise cancelling headphones that bring joy, comfort and satisfaction to your listening experience. Relaxing to your favorite music is good for your health but it doesn’t mean that you need to purchase something expensive to enjoy good audio. For more information about the featured brands and models, you can check out their respective official websites. All of the products included on our list are also available at Amazon.com.