Noise-cancelling headphones 2019 – there were more than
usual as this Bluetooth, Noise Cancelling category bred like rabbits.
The main additions to Noise Cancelling Headphones 2019 were voice
assistants (OK Google, Alexa and some Siri), move to USB-C and PD charging, better
Adaptive (intelligent) noise cancelling, BT 5.0 and longer battery life.
Where to start with noise-cancelling headphones 2019? At the top of course.
Note that we are referring to consumer-grade headphones (over
the ear) and earphones (in-ear) not studio monitor cans. We have put ‘street’
price guides (many online) rather than RRP.
What excited me in 2019 – noise-cancelling headphones 2019
Similar ‘warm and sweet’ sound to the Momentum 3
with bass starting a little
20/30 hours BT/3/5mm ANC
USB-DAC to allow it as a USB headphone on a
227g and fold flat/in makes it perfect as a travel
Honourable mention: Bose 700 $499–599 best noise cancelling and hands-free speakerphone use 4.8/5
The noise cancelling is exceptional
Bose sound is ‘synthetic’ and verges more on ‘bright-vocal.’
Its four beamforming mics are amazingly clear for hands-free speakerphone use
260g and new style but it does not fold so its not perfect for travel
We also reviewed many other headphones
Bowers and Wilkins PX7. $509-599. 4.7-out-of-5. Excellent effort, 30-hour BT/ANC but lacking an EQ for a custom sound.
AKG N700 $220-250 – good adaptive noise cancelling but uses older BT 4.2 and SBC codec. Mid-centric sound signature makes these best for clear voice
Microsoft Surface 4.2/5 $499 – without being unkind the kindest thing we could say is these are unique and the result of three years involving a large team of Microsoft engineers rather than re-brand someone else’s device. Surface lovers won’t regret the purchase, mid-centric, 290g, BT 4.2 and Cortana, Google and Siri support.
Jabra Elite 85h $349, 4.5/5 were the most exciting and have the potential to take on the big guys. It has BT 5.0, adaptive noise cancelling and good all-rounders. The initial price of $499 made them uncompetitive.
JBL Live 650 $199, 4.5/5 – great warm and sweet sound and a $249 price to blow you away
Sony WH-1000XM3 $340-399, 4.9/5 reviewed in December 2018 and technology has passed it by. At the time it was a class leader and for many at under $380 it still is. It supports LDAC high res, AAC and SBC and was our reference headphone in 2019.