Best In-ear Headphones in 2020

Jabra 75t wireless headphones
Jabra 75t wireless headphones (Image credit: iMore)

In-ear headphones sometimes get a bad rap, but the truth is some of the best in-ear headphones are comfortable and sound fantastic. If you're not a fan of carrying around big and bulky over-the-ear cans everywhere you go and prefer something a little more subtle, in-ear headphones are the way to go. The Jabra Elite 75t (opens in new tab) stand above the pack as the best overall because of its versatility and price.

Best Overall: Jabra Elite 75t

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Jabra 75t vs AirPods 2 headphones

Jabra 75t vs AirPods 2 headphones (Image credit: iMore)

The secure fit and design of the Jabra Elite 75t do a lot to help the sound quality and make them the best in-ear headphones on the market right now. The sound-isolation, thanks to how snuggly these fit in your ear, is excellent and it's easy to tune out the outside world by pumping the volume up on your favorite tunes. Plus, considering the type of headphones these are, the Jabra Elite 75t have excellent bass, and I never found the sound to be distorted, even at high volume levels.

Moving on to the physical headphones themselves, the Jabra Elite 75t have onboard controls that aren't gesture-based. You have to press the button on each ear to do various things like control playback, invoke Siri, and more.

The last thing worth highlighting is the excellent Jabra Sound+ app that lets you control a few different things. It has an EQ that you can adjust with custom settings or pick on of the six presets. The best part of the app is the ability to activate the "HearThrough" feature, which allows the built-in microphones to pick up outside noise and allowing you to hear a bit of what's going on around you.

Jabra Elite 75t

Great price on a great set of truly wireless earbuds

Reasons to buy

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Great price
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Fantastic companion app
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Amazing sound isolation
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HearThrough feature

Reasons to avoid

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The battery life of the earbuds could be better
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Charging case is a bit bulky

Whether you're looking to work out or just commuting to and from work, the Jabra Elite 75t are a versatile set of wireless earbuds.

Best Workout Companion: Jaybird X4

Jaybird X4 promo photo

Jaybird X4 promo photo (Image credit: JayBird)

Admittedly, the Jaybird X4 earbuds are not perfect, but they're certainly the best workout headphones you can buy right now. When you combine their feature set and sound quality, it's pretty hard to consider any other pair of workout earbuds.

They come with a few sizes of ear tips, as well as three fin sizes, so you can mix and match to find what works best for you. Some people may not like the rubber, sort of suction cup-ish ear tips, which is justifiable. If you don't find the perfect fit, they can feel like they've completely dammed up your ears.

The icing on the cake for these 'buds is how quickly they connect and the great playback controls. I turn them on, and they connect instantly and immediately give you the remaining battery percentage, which is just dynamite. And I love the control sounds to let you know you're skipping a track, going back, or turning them off. It all comes together perfectly to make a very compelling product and some of the best in-ear headphones we've tried.

Jaybird X4

Exceptional battery life and a solid overall experience

Reasons to buy

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Phenomenal battery life
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Great sound
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Excellent companion app
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Comfortable fit

Reasons to avoid

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Proprietary charging cable

The Jaybird X4's in-line playback/call controls along with the Jaybird app make for an exceptional, intuitive experience.

Best for iPhone: AirPods 2

Apple AirPods on iPhone

Apple AirPods on iPhone (Image credit: iMore)

AirPods, now in their second generation, are considered to be the best product the company has produced in many years for good reason. They pair easily with Apple devices, and switching between devices is a cinch. They also sound better than your standard wired earbuds. Plus, the 5-hour battery life, with another 24 hours thanks to the charging case, means they should last throughout your day and more. However, some people might have trouble getting the AirPods to stay in their ears.

Airpods 2

Amazing for Apple users

Reasons to buy

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Lots of battery life with charging case
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Seamless switching between Apple products
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Wireless charging case

Reasons to avoid

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A little pricey
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Only really good with Apple Products

AirPods are an iPhone's best friend. Long battery life, fast charging, and an incredible way to interact with your Apple Products.

Best Wired: Marshall Mode EQ

Marshall Mode EQ

Marshall Mode EQ (Image credit: Marshall)

Who says the best in-ear headphones need to be flashy? The Marshall Mode EQ prides itself on delivering a balanced soundstage, but there's an option to turn up the bass by pressing a toggle on the remote. It comes with sturdy construction, a single-button remote that lets you receive calls and control music playback, integrated microphone. Plus, the retro design flair makes it stand out.

Marshall Mode EQ

Fantastic balanced sound

Reasons to buy

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Nice balance sound stage
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Fantastic price
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Four different sizes of ear tips

Reasons to avoid

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Non-replaceable cable

When it comes to a balanced sound in a wired pair of headphones, the Marshall Mode EQ are hard to beat.

Best Neck Earbuds: Bose QuietControl 30

Bose QuietControl 30

Bose QuietControl 30 (Image credit: Bose)

While neckbuds (or neck earbuds) aren't the most popular type of headphones on the market, the Bose QuietControl 30 are good enough to convert any non-believer. Not only is losing something on your neck much harder to do with simple earbuds, but they also reduce the strain on your ears.

Bose is known for having good sound quality — especially nice clear bass that doesn't muddy up your music — and Bose QuietControl 30 are no exception. With three different levels of noise-cancellation, you can choose just how much of the outside world you want to hear when you're out and about.

Bose QuietControl 30

Premium sound on your neck

Reasons to buy

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Reduces strain on ears
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10-hour battery life
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Great companion app

Reasons to avoid

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Expensive

The Bose QC30 are a reliable pair of in-ear neckbud earbuds. They go around the back of your neck; that way, you have a super low chance of losing them.

Best Low-Budget option: Aukey Latitude

Aukey Latitude promo photo

Source: Aukey (Image credit: Source: Aukey)

If you want to go wireless in the gym (and there's no reason why you shouldn't at this point), but you don't want to spend a ton, then these are the earbuds for you. 1.5 hours of charging gives you 8 hours of playback, and Aukey has a two-year warranty should anything go wrong.

They sound much better than any low-cost pair of headphones have any right to sound, but they only have an IPX4 rating, meaning while they should be able to handle your sweat no problem, it's likely a good idea to give them a quick wipe after you're done your workout.

Aukey Latitude

The Aukey Latitude earbuds have a price that massively belies their quality.

Reasons to buy

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Affordable
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Two-year warranty
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8-hour battery life

Reasons to avoid

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Only IPX4
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MicroUSB charging

The Aukey Latitude earbuds are surprisingly excellent. They're wireless, have a long battery life, and have remarkably good sound.

Best for Sports: Powerbeats Pro

Source: iMore

Source: iMore (Image credit: Source: iMore)

Powerbeats Pro is Apple's newest set of Beats-branded earphones. They're the first of their kind from the Beats line in that they are the first truly wireless headphones from the department.

They're incredibly comfortable (though for some, canal buds are painful), have rich and well-balanced EQ for a fantastic listening experience, and stay put in your ears.

Their only real flaw is in the charging case, which is bigger than it needs to be and isn't particularly convenient. There is also no way, at this time, to purchase a second charging case, so you can't have one at home and an extra sitting at work.

Powerbeats Pro

Reasons to buy

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Truly wireless
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H1-chip-enabled
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Great battery life
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Voice-activated Siri support

Reasons to avoid

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A bit bass-heavy
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Bulky charging case

Want a pair of truly wireless earbuds that have the H1 chip that isn't AirPods? You're going to love Powerbeats Pro.

Bottom line

The Jabra Elite 75t (opens in new tab) stand out as some of the best in-ear headphones you can get today. With impressive sound quality, a fantastic companion app, and a truly wireless design, its easy to take a pair of the Jabra Elite 75ts anywhere.

Finally, at 7.5 hours per charge and an additional 20 hours in the case, battery life isn't groundbreaking. However, it's easy to manage your battery with intermittent charging to get through the workday and into your evening just fine.