We use cookies to allow us and selected partners to improve your experience and our advertising. By continuing to browse you consent to our use of cookies. You can understand more and change your cookies preferences here.

Coronavirus Read our latest advice
Reviews based on facts
Our rigorous tests find the facts, and our impartial reviews tell you the truth about how products perform. First month £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel anytime.
Try Which?
19 October 2020

Best wireless headphones for 2020

Sound quality and battery drain are no longer a concern with wireless headphones. We’ve rounded up some excellent models to suit you.
BestWirelessHeadphones
OT
Oliver Trebilcock

Most wireless headphones work using Bluetooth. The best Bluetooth headphones are comfortable and have enough battery to see you through several long-haul flights. Most importantly, they don’t sacrifice sound quality for wireless convenience.

In our independent lab tests we've uncovered the best  wireless headphones that sit over, in or on your ear. Our experts have handpicked some of our favourites that we recommend in the tables below.

Only logged-in Which? members can view our recommendations in the table below. If you’re not yet a member, join Which? to get instant access.

Looking for more recommendations and buying information? See our expert guide to the best headphones.

Best wireless over-ear headphones

Over-ear headphones completely surround your ear they're larger than other pairs, but can be more comfortable to wear and often offer extra features. Many over-ear wireless headphones are noise cancelling too, blocking out external noise.

Sign up to reveal product image
91%
Best Buy
£249.00
Reviewed

These over-ear headphones are a landmark launch, becoming the highest-ever scoring wireless headphones at our expert lab. The industry-leading active noise cancelling is the best we’ve yet seen, they’re superbly comfortable, and the 27-plus hour battery life goes the distance. They’re foldable and there’s even a detachable cord if you forget to charge them, plus a whole host of optional settings in the accompanying smartphone app.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in
Sign up to reveal product image
77%
Best Buy
Great value
£89.98
Reviewed

These are fantastic-sounding Great Value over-ear noise cancelling headphones – they’re so good they’ve even beaten many pairs double their price in our tests. It’s a real challenge to find a pair with effective noise cancelling in this price range, and these really do deliver.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in
Sign up to reveal product image
74%
Best Buy
£259.00
Reviewed

Headphones with effective active noise cancelling can be extremely expensive. But these headphones are a slightly cheaper option that are also excellent, with superb noise cancelling. In fact, they’re ideally-suited to travelling, with a compact design and travel case, lightweight feel and good build quality. A great alternative to bulkier pairs, and cheaper than many rivals too.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in

Best on-ear wireless headphones

On-ear headphones rest on top of your ears, rather than surrounding them. This allows the earcups to be smaller, but they can be less comfortable to wear over longer periods as the earcups put pressure on your ears.

Sign up to reveal product image
78%
Best Buy
Safety alert
£109.00
Reviewed

These on headphones are ideal for your commute, with excellent active noise cancelling to block out unwanted background noise. They sound excellent and are comfortable as well - plus conveniently fold up into their provided carry case for easy storage. The safety issue only applies to very early batches and relates to the carry pouch.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in
Sign up to reveal product image
70%
Best Buy
£199.95
Reviewed

If you love listening through headphones at home and want to do away with wires, these could be the perfect pair. They make for very immersive listening and have nice retro looks. They have a lovely warm, natural tone with a wide range of sound frequencies produced and plenty of detail.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in
Sign up to reveal product image
67%
Great value
£29.99
Reviewed

These lightweight on-ear headphones are a great option if you’re looking for a versatile pair on a budget. The sound quality is great and they’re easy to use.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in

Best wireless in-ear headphones

The most compact and lightweight type, in-ear headphones form an acoustic seal around your ear canal, while earbud headphones rest on your outer ear. Earbud headphones are usually very cheap pairs they can be easier to fit, but tend to leak more sound to your surroundings. One exception is the Apple Airpods, which are wireless earbud headphones.

Sign up to reveal product image
80%
Best Buy
£129.00
Reviewed

These headphones are some of the best-sounding our lab has tested. They're designed to pair perfectly with iPhones, and even allow you to control Siri without having to get your phone out of your pocket. They’re light and comfortable, so are easy to take out and about with you.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in
Sign up to reveal product image
74%
Best Buy
£145.00
Reviewed

If you want to save yourself from the daily chore of untangling wires, truly wireless headphones could be ideal. These big-brand headphones come with a charging case that provides two full charges. They are suitable for exercise and are sweat and weather-resistant, plus the sound quality is strong. Find out how our expert panel rated the comfort of these headphones, and whether there’s anything you should watch out for.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in
Sign up to reveal product image
72%
Best Buy
£59.00
Reviewed

This lightweight Bluetooth corded in-ear pair has plenty of detail in the treble frequencies, and sound is natural and punchy with a lovely strong bass. They have a cord which you wear round the back of your neck and are generally comfortable to wear, with a good snug fit in your ears. The earphones have small magnets on them, to minimise tangling, with them tidily clipping them together around your neck when not in use.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in

Not found the product for you? Browse all of our headphone reviews.

Wireless headphones to avoid buying

The convenience of wireless headphones won't count for much if you get a pair that can't produce great audio. The worst models we see at our test lab are bad enough to induce headaches, with harsh sound and uncomfortable fits. Make sure you check the table below so you can avoid some of the worst offenders.

Sign up to reveal product image
39%
Don't buy
£39.99
Reviewed

These budget over-ear wireless Bluetooth headphones are a shining example of ‘too good to be true’. At a rock-bottom price, they’re barely more expensive that some of the cheapest in-ear wired headphones. They seem to have all the useful features, including a mic and controls to answer and control calls, as well as volume and music controls, and the earcups swivel flat for easy storage. However, sound quality is appalling. Bass is boomy, but also thick and dull; sound is muffled and lifeless, lacking articulation and excitement, and highs are tinny and harsh.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in
Sign up to reveal product image
32%
Don't buy
£45.00
Reviewed

These affordable headphones may have barely passable noise cancelling technology, but the headphones themselves are heavy, hot and uncomfortable to war. Sound is muffled, dull and lacking in detail. Battery life is also well below the manufacturer's claims. Avoid.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in
Sign up to reveal product image
31%
Don't buy
£50.78
Reviewed

You'll want to steer well clear of these headphones. They're actually meant for use in the home, so you can listen to your hi-fi or TV late at night without disturbing others. Unfortunately though, you're the one that will end up being disturbed if you buy these headphones. The sound is rotten - a distracting hiss swamps everything you listen to.

Sign up to reveal product
First month only £5, then £9.99 per month, cancel any time
Already a member? Log in

Wireless headphones FAQs

Will wireless headphones work with any smartphone?

Pretty much, yes. The vast majority of wireless headphones and all the models featured in the tables above use Bluetooth to connect wirelessly to your phone. Bluetooth is a universal standard, so you'll be able to transmit music from any Bluetooth-enabled phone, laptop or tablet to any pair of Bluetooth headphones. 

Things do get slightly more complicated, as there have been different Bluetooth standards released over the years. The later versions allow music to be transmitted in higher quality and use less battery power. Don't worry though: if the headphones and the music source are both compatible they'll automatically use the higher-quality version.

How do you charge wireless headphones?

Most wireless headphones now have a built-in rechargeable battery, and typically come with a charging cable ending with a standard USB socket. To charge such headphones from the mains, you usually need to purchase a USB plug adapter with a power output (watts) suitable for your device, as these aren't typically provided in the box. 

Most headphones will charge from a standard USB charger plug like those supplied with mobile phones. For example, if you already have an Apple 5W USB power adapter for charging your iPhone, you can also use it to charge your Apple AirPods headphones. Choose any reputable brand for the adapter - it rarely needs to match the brand of your headphones. Some headphones will support higher power adapters for faster charging.

Can wireless headphones sound as good as wired?

The reasons are complicated but, in short, yes, wireless headphones can sound just as good as a wired pair for most people's purposes. The thing that matters most for sound quality is the physical design of the headphones. The best wireless headphones are capable of playing music in CD quality and above, and it's a matter of scientific debate whether we can even hear differences in quality above this.

How does Which? test and recommend wireless headphones?

We use a panel of five experts to judge every pair of headphones on their sound quality, comfort, durability and how much sound they leak. We also look at how stable the wireless connection is between the headphones and smartphone or MP3 player, to make sure you get uninterrupted music.

View all Headphones