The 23 best headphones of 2014: the best sets of earbuds and headphones for iPhone, iPad, Android and more
We review and rank the 23 best sets of headphones you can buy
By Matt Egan | PC Advisor | 14 April 14
- Reviewed on: 15 July 13
- RRP: £260 inc VAT
We found the Sennheiser Momentum headphone to be a surprising step away from the classic, level Sennheiser sound, if sadly toward the muted and tuneless thump of fashion 'phones popularised by Beats. There's little treble content to cause offence, but we found them just as wearing from excessive bass boom.
- Reviewed on: 15 July 13
- RRP: £179 inc VAT
We found lots to like in the ES-HF300 headphones, starting with their good insight into the music mix, and low scope that didn't drown out everything above. Like many far-eastern voiced headphones, they have a crisp, trebly quality that throws the window open to detail, although that can also make them over analytical.
- Reviewed on: 26 August 13
- RRP: £129.99
There are much cheaper in-ear headphones that deliver the same quality sound. Nevertheless, the Monster iSport Victory sit quite well in the ear and perform well in all conditions.
- Reviewed on: 30 July 13
- RRP: £50 inc. VAT
Decent audio quality, solid build quality, and a price that is guaranteed to shift. There's not much to dislike about the Noontec Zoro HD headphones, just don't mention Dr Dre.
- Reviewed on: 3 December 12
- RRP: £150 inc. VAT
Well-built and stylish, the iT7x headset is a full-featured, high-performance set of Bluetooth earphones. The sound isn't as good as the best wired audio equipment, but in general we are fans.
- Reviewed on: 27 July 12
- RRP: £259.95 inc VAT
Sennheiser's new Amperior headphones offer rugged good looks and excellent sound quality. Read our review to find out more.
- Reviewed on: 16 July 13
- RRP: £270
Expensive but with so much care poured into the construction and bundled accessories, it's not hard to see these are the brainchild of a music-first company. Yes, we would have liked more insight into the details of recording, but there are other headphones for that. For these Crossfade M-100s, it's about shameless audio enjoyment.
- Reviewed on: 6 November 12
- RRP: £59 inc VAT
The Philips CityScape Downtown headphones offer comfort and style for a very affordable price. Sound quality is respectable but not astounding, but we didn't expect anything more for the asking price.
- Reviewed on: 14 November 12
- RRP: £99.99
Don’t be misled by the posturing look and mock-gothic script printed over these ‘phones. They’ll suit a wide range of music – and that includes rap and metal. If you are a Heavy Metal fan then the Motörheadphönes will be Ace, and you should Bite The Bullet, make the Sacrifice and buy a pair straight away to show your allegiance. Lemmy have ‘em! If you’re more of a Mantovani person they’ll be a little Overkill and you might prefer to be Deaf Forever.
- Reviewed on: 29 October 13
- RRP: £99
The Sol Republic Tracks HD are sleek and simply designed, plus customizable down to the colour of the cord. Their sound quality is nothing to sneeze at, either.
- Reviewed on: 30 September 13
- RRP: £69.55 inc VAT
The Plantronics BackBeat Go 2 earbuds produce decent quality sound for a reasonable price and are a big improvement over the original model. However, we still long for improved battery life and better quality bass.
- Reviewed on: 21 January 13
- RRP: £299 inc VAT
The high price of the Logitech UE 9000 is what’s stopping us recommending them outright. If you can find them for a significant discount where they begin to compete with the Audio-Technicas, Boses and Polk Audios in the sub-£200 price range, we’d give them serious consideration for the convenience of the combination of Bluetooth and high-capacity internal battery.
- Reviewed on: 16 September 13
- RRP: £53.99 inc VAT
If you're looking for a solid headset for gaming, the Luxury Edition of the SteelSeries Flux is a good investment. It could use some refinement though, especially when it comes to padding under the headband.
- Reviewed on: 8 November 13
- RRP: £75 inc VAT
At £75 the WoodTones aren’t exactly cheap, but the quality construction, excellent sound, and elegant design make them well worth the investment. The ability to manipulate your device via the inline controller is a very useful one, and the wood finish elevates the WoodTones above the sea of plastic that is usually on offer.
- Reviewed on: 12 July 13
- RRP: £250 inc VAT
KEF has come up trumps with its first pair of headphones offering excellent build quality and a stylish comfortable design. After running in, the M500 headphones sound clear, punchy and balanced but won't blow you away quite as touted. They are also pricey for our liking and you can find similar or better sound quality for less.
- Reviewed on: 13 September 13
- RRP: £269.95 inc VAT
The Beats Studio is two things; firstly they are powerful headphones that are great for hip-hop or electronic music, secondly they are a desirable fashion accessory/statement. If that’s what you’re after then these are great - if you’re looking for a more rounded audio performance then you might be better off looking elsewhere, especially for the price.
- Reviewed on: 14 April 14
- RRP: £75 inc. VAT
Good to look at, nicely put together and comfortable to use. With only a couple of minor caveats we are impressed with the MeElectronics Atlas Orion. Audio quality is good but not great. But at this price that makes the MeElectronics Atlas Orion a headset worth purchasing.
- Reviewed on: 1 March 13
- RRP: £339 inc VAT
Sony’s MDR-1RBT headphones sound equally good whether you’re listening wired or wirelessly. Hooking up with Bluetooth does give a bit of a bump to bass and treble, too, as well as the convenience of no cords. The convenience of NFC - if you’ve got a compatible mobile - is even better.
- Reviewed on: 11 April 14
- RRP: £89.99 inc. VAT
We were impressed with the Creative Hitz WP380 wireless headphones, for sound quality, comfort and wireless freedom. Once you tried Bluetooth headphones going back to wired models seems rather primitive. Sound quality is great and these headphones are comfortable to wear and don’t leak much noise to the outside world.
- Reviewed on: 5 July 12
- RRP: £169
Bowers & Wilkins has delivered an excellent balance of price, design, build quality and sound performance with the P3. For the reasonable price of £169 you get a comfortable and stylish pair of portable headphones with balanced and clear sound.
- Reviewed on: 27 September 13
- RRP: £89 inc VAT
Although Denon's AH-W150 Bluetooth earphones are not for audiophiles, they produce excellent sound quality and volume at an affordable price point, particularly considering they are wireless.
- Reviewed on: 31 December 13
- RRP: £239 inc VAT
The Bose QC15 headphones make for an impressive set of in-ears which you're unlikely to regret if you travel a lot. Although sound performance isn't the best, the sensational noise cancelling, comfortable design and handy aware mode make these a great buy.
- Reviewed on: 11 July 13
- RRP: £350 inc VAT
The AH-D600 headphones offer armchair comfort with analytical insight into the musical mix. These headphones possess comfort levels that rise above lighter street-friendly designs, but that will make them a little bulky and ostentatious for most people to use on the move. Nevertheless, if you want a great taste of high-end head sound the Denons will deliver with majestic and relaxed sound.