Top 3 Best Apple Headphones Of 2023
So far, we’ve tried out seven pairs of Apple headphones. Even though they are best known for their laptops, smartphones, and tablets, they also make sleek headphones with a simple design. Their headphones are made for people who already use Apple products, and they work well with Apple’s ecosystem. Some find their design a bit boring, and they have limited functionality on Android, but they effectively deliver on the simple yet premium user experience that Apple is known for.
1. AirPods Max Wireless from Apple
The Apple AirPods Max Wireless are the best noise-cancelling headphones we’ve tried from Apple. These sleek and premium over-ears have an outstanding active noise cancelling (ANC) feature, which can cut down lots of bass-range noise like bus or plane engines, ambient chatter, and higher-pitched sounds like the hum of an AC unit. They are also made of aluminum and look and feel well-made. Their sound is mostly neutral, but it has a bit more thump and rumble that EDM and hip-hop fans will enjoy. They also have a continuous battery life of over 21 hours, and Apple advertises that a five-minute quick charge can give you up to 1.5 hours of additional playtime, though we don’t currently test this feature.
The AirPods Max have excellent noise cancellation and a mode that lets you hear what’s going on around you with the click of a button. The digital crown at the top of the right ear cup is used to control the volume and playback, and it is so smooth it is crazy. When I’m trying to adjust the headphones, I sometimes turn up or down the volume by accident. When you take off the headphones, tiny sensors on the inside of the ear cups stop the music automatically. Putting the headphones back on makes the music play again.
They can’t be turned off, and when you put them in their carrying case, they switch to a low-power mode. The carrying case is mediocre, as it’s only a sleeve that covers the two ear cups. It’s on purpose, so you can use the headband as a handle to carry it. Even though they are made of high-quality materials like aluminum and silicone, the mesh screen around the headband seems to be weak and easy to break, especially if you use the headband as a handle. If you’re looking for sleek Apple headphones that deliver a powerful noise cancellation performance, they’re a suitable choice.
2. AirPods Pro from Apple (2nd generation) Truly Wireless
Let’s start with how it looks from the outside. In this case, Apple hasn’t done much to change the size or shape of the buds or make them look much different. The first AirPods Pro were small and light, and they fit a lot of people’s ears really well, so I can’t say that was a bad choice. Some people wanted shorter stems, new colors, or even better water resistance, but they are still IPX4 splash-proof. But I thought Apple would stick with its tried-and-true design and focus on improving things like sound quality, noise-canceling, and battery life, which is now up to six hours from about four and a half hours with noise canceling on and an extra four charges in the charging case (30 hours total). With the noise canceling turned off, those numbers go up to seven hours and 35 hours total. You can get about an hour of use from a quick five-minute charge.
The best Apple earbuds we’ve tried are the Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) Truly Wireless. These earbuds are the updated version of the Apple AirPods Pro Truly Wireless and offer similar overall performance with some improvements. Their ANC works better overall, so they do a great job of blocking out noise while you’re commuting or at work. By default, they have a warm sound profile that works well with a wide range of content and genres. The company advertises its “adaptive EQ,” which changes the sound based on how well the headphones fit and how your ears are shaped. They also have a virtual surround sound feature called “Spatial Audio,” which is meant to make listening more immersive. However, like most Apple products, they don’t have sound-customization tools like an EQ.
They fit well and stay in place, which makes them good for long listening sessions. They don’t leak a lot of noise, either, so you can crank up the volume without annoying those around you. The buttons on the earbuds now click and have a volume control, which was missing from the first model. Their roughly 5.9 hours of continuous battery life is a small improvement over the last generation, but the case can only hold four charges instead of five. On the bright side, the case has an U1 chip that lets you use the “Find My” app to find it if you lose it.
3. The second generation of Apple AirPods are truly wireless
The Apple AirPods are the best of what Apple has to offer that is less expensive (2nd generation). Even though they aren’t exactly cheap, AirPods products are more affordable than AirPods Pro models. They have an open back and don’t have ANC, so they aren’t good for places with a lot of noise. The newer 3rd generation AirPods are also missing some features from the older 2nd generation. However, the 2nd generation AirPods are smaller, sleeker, and most people find them to be much more comfortable. They are also well put together. Their sound lacks bass, but their mid-range response is very accurate and makes them great for podcasts or classical music.
They have an H1 chip that makes them easier to pair with other Apple products. They also have low latency with iOS devices, so when you’re watching a video on your iPhone, you won’t hear audio lag. They don’t block out much background noise, which can be a good thing if you like to be aware of your surroundings when you walk. The battery life is only about 4 hours, which is the shortest of all the products on this page. Also, they come with a small case that can hold five extra charges. The Apple EarPods are basic, cheap wired earbuds that you can use if you don’t want to worry about running out of power or want a cheaper option. Like the AirPods, they don’t block out background noise and don’t have much bass, so they work best for things like audiobooks.
Apple is known for its focus on simplicity—things should “just work” without complicated features or extra work from the user. They don’t have that many models yet, but the ones they do have are in line with the company’s goals and work well overall. Their headphones look sleek and simple, and they usually sound pretty good. They can also be expensive, especially if they have a lot of features, but their wired earphones aren’t too expensive.