Audiobooks have profoundly changed the way that we consume the written word. They provide us the ability to ‘read’ while performing other functions: working, driving, or even eating a meal. However, audiobooks can quickly be ruined when they are drowned out by other noises in your environment.
This is why it is key to have a great pair of headphones on hand. There are many different headphone options available and today we are going to show you which models are the best and why you should consider them. Listed below you’ll find the top quality headphones for audiobook listening in 2017, sorted by category.
Top Headphone Qualities
When you purchase a pair of headphones you need to make sure that you are looking for several important characteristics. While there are almost countless types of headphones, the traits that they share are more important than the ones that they do not. Here’s what you want to look for:
Noise Reduction/Noise Cancelation
As we highlighted above, nothing can ruin a listening experience more than hearing every audible sound leak right into your story. Look for headphones that offer some level of noise reduction. There are two options you will be paying special attention to: noise isolating headphones and noise cancelling headphones. We’ll dig deeper into the differences in their respective categories.
What you hear through your ears comes to you by way of sound frequency. The human ear is particularly attuned to the lower end of the frequency range, thus making a stronger ‘bass’ frequency more important. Audiophiles are typically more concerned with frequency when it comes to music, but don’t short change your audiobooks either.
Headphones are so much more than simple audio conduits. With the growing popularity of satellite and wireless tech, headsets are beginning to gather their own neat little features. Higher end headphones now offer satellite controls for pausing, skipping files, and adjusting your volume.
Finally we are going to touch on comfort. Comfort is integral for audiobook listening because you are going to be distracted if your ears are hurting. We will dig deeper into this category below. Typically comfort is decided by size, earbud material, and ear placement (over ear, inner ear and so on).
Best Bluetooth Headphones
We are going to kickstart our list by taking a look at the top wireless headphones available for audiobook listening. These headphones are wire-free for ease of use which makes them particularly popular for people who are engaging in physical activities while listening: driving, working out, working at their desk. The headphones listed below utilize Bluetooth technology to communicate with your device, thus putting a priority on longterm battery life and ease of use.
Budget Friendly: LG Tone Infinim HBS 900
The first pair of headphones that we will cover comes to us by way of LG. LG produced their HBS-900 as an affordable option for listeners who want something simple, with a long battery life. These headphones are light enough that you will forget you are wearing them while solid enough that you won’t worry about breaking them. You battery will run about 14 hours per charge.
Luxury Option: JayBird X2 Headphones
If you want to spend up on your headphones then the JayBird BlueBuds might be for you. What we dig about this option is that they were made with rough-housing in mind. If you are going to be jogging on the treadmill you don’t want a pair of headphones that will weigh you down. You’ll get 8 hours of playtime per charge in a rugged, lightweight, inner ear and sweatproof design. Made for both music and audio books, this little powerhouse covers the frequency range with harm.
Best Noise Cancelling and Noise Isolating Headphones
Next up we are going to discuss the best noise modifying headphones out there. This style of headphone comes in two varieties: noise isolating and noise cancelling. Noise isolating headphones are made with the aim to segregate you from ambient noise via a physical barrier. Noise cancelling headphones utilize special technology to literally neutralize offending soundwaves. Can you guess which is more expensive? We like noise cancelling headphones for relaxing around the house while noise isolating headphones are great for when you are traveling because they still allow you to hear enough to get around. Both styles will work to protect your hearing from long-term damage.
Noise Cancelling: Cowin E-7 Noise Cancelling Headphones
This popular pair of headphones utilizes noise cancelling technology in order to allow you to completely immerse yourself within your audio book. There is a physical switch on the headphones that turns on the noise cancelling function. These headphones feature 30 hours of playtime per battery charge, giving you long lasting life while out and about. The headphone cups are made to swivel up to 90′ while they feature protein earpads for long lasting comfort.
Noise Isolating: Status Audio HD
When your needs are simple and your audiobook is great, look no further than the Status Audio HD. This pair of headphones was designed with studio grade quality in a minimalist package. What we love about this headphone set is that it features a deep and resonating bass frequency which really gives your audiobook some life.
Best Cheap Headphones
Alright, so we’ve taken some time to ingratiate ourselves with the different styles of headsets. We’ve looked at a few top options that will dramatically improve your audiobook listening experience. Now we are going to take a look at some more budget friendly options. Listed below you’ll find the three major categories of headphones (In Ear, Full Sized, and Airpod) as well as our favorite budget pick for each.
In Ears – Panasonic RP-HJE120
Panasonic has long since taught us that you don’t need to spend a ton of money in order to get a decent pair of headphones. This budget friendly pair of headphones features a wide frequency range to maximize the audio life of your audiobooks. These are light, durable, and useful for no-frills listening.
Full Sized – JVC HARX700 Precision Headphones
What if we said you could get a full bodied, luscious pair of headphones for under $50? The JVC HARX700 offers you the perfect budget friendly pair of headphones for audiobooks. What we love about this pair is that it is incredibly comfortable thanks to the high grade ear cups. JVC focused on giving the HARX700 deep bass response, as well, so you’ll never miss a word of your audiobook.
AirPods – EGRD Wireless Bluetooth AirPods
Just because your headphones weigh only a few ounces doesn’t mean that they should skimp on quality or features. This model of AirPod features Bluetooth 4.1 tech for wireless listening. You’ve also got a responsive microphone that allows you to reject/accept phone calls and adjust your listening experience with a few words. The EGRD also has noise cancelling technology, a rarity for budget friendly airpods.