The best 10 Bluetooth headsets in comparison

Which are the best Bluetooth headsets of 2020?

Best Bluetooth headsets of 2020 (1 - 5)
Bluetooth headset comparison
Comparison winner
Bluetooth headset comparison
Comparison winner
Plantronics Voyager Legend UC
Comparison winner
Mpow EM10
Comparison winner
Plantronics BackBeat 903+
Comparison winner
Plantronics Marque 2 M165
Comparison winner
Plantronics BackBeat Go
Comparison winner
Plantronics Voyager Legend
Comparison winner
Nokia BH-905i
Comparison winner
Nokia J
Comparison winner
Jabra Engage 75 Stereo/Mono
Comparison winner
Jabra Evolve2 40 Stereo
Image
Plantronics Voyager Legend UC
100points
Mpow EM10
98points
Plantronics BackBeat 903+
90points
Plantronics Marque 2 M165
89points
Plantronics BackBeat Go
88points
Plantronics Voyager Legend
88points
Nokia BH-905i
87points
Nokia J
86points
Jabra Engage 75 Stereo/Mono
85points
Jabra Evolve2 40 Stereo
85points
Best price
Best price
Summary
Summary
  • Design (56)
  • Sound quality (33)
  • Microphone (74)
  • Power (67)
  • Connectivity (35)
  • Features (100)
  • Design (48)
  • Sound quality (44)
  • Microphone (37)
  • Power (68)
  • Connectivity (46)
  • Features (68)
  • Design (56)
  • Sound quality (42)
  • Microphone (70)
  • Power (67)
  • Connectivity (27)
  • Features (63)
  • Design (57)
  • Sound quality (33)
  • Microphone (70)
  • Power (67)
  • Connectivity (35)
  • Features (75)
  • Design (95)
  • Sound quality (70)
  • Microphone (11)
  • Power (60)
  • Connectivity (27)
  • Features (41)
  • Design (56)
  • Sound quality (33)
  • Microphone (74)
  • Power (67)
  • Connectivity (9)
  • Features (75)
  • Design (81)
  • Sound quality (67)
  • Microphone (67)
  • Power (67)
  • Connectivity (54)
  • Features (51)
  • Design (38)
  • Sound quality (67)
  • Microphone (33)
  • Power (67)
  • Connectivity (54)
  • Features (88)
  • Design (83)
  • Sound quality (41)
  • Microphone (47)
  • Power (59)
  • Connectivity (83)
  • Features (51)
  • Design (62)
  • Sound quality (67)
  • Microphone (41)
  • Power (0)
  • Connectivity (35)
  • Features (61)
Pros
Pros
  • Weather-sealed (splashproof)
  • Wind noise reduction microphone
  • More microphone(s)
  • Newer Bluetooth version
  • Wind noise reduction microphone
  • Wind noise reduction microphone
  • Passive noise reduction
  • Weather-sealed (splashproof)
  • Tangle-free cable
  • Weather-sealed (splashproof)
  • Wind noise reduction microphone
  • More microphone(s)
  • Lower low-frequency
  • More microphone(s)
  • 3.5mm male connector
  • Passive noise reduction
  • Wind noise reduction microphone
  • Bluetooth pairing using NFC
  • Newer Bluetooth version
  • Bluetooth pairing using NFC
  • Passive noise reduction
  • More microphone(s)
  • USB Type-C
Cons
Cons
  • Stereo speakers
  • Stereo speakers
  • Active noise cancellation (ANC)
  • Driver unit size
  • Bluetooth version
  • Lowest frequency
  • Highest frequency
  • Voice commands
  • Travel bag included
  • Battery life
  • Charge time
  • Number of microphones
  • Driver unit size
  • Bluetooth version
  • Noise-canceling microphone
  • Wireless
  • Travel bag included
  • Stereo speakers
  • Bluetooth version
  • Voice commands
  • Voice prompts
  • Number of microphones
  • Bluetooth version
  • Noise-canceling microphone
  • Stereo speakers
  • Travel bag included
  • Voice commands
  • Number of microphones
  • Battery life
  • Active noise cancellation (ANC)
  • Highest frequency
  • Active noise cancellation (ANC)
  • Noise-canceling microphone
  • Voice prompts
  • Wireless
  • Rechargeable battery
  • Battery level indicator
Design
Dust- and water-resistanceThe device is dustproof and water-resistant. Water-resistant devices can resist the penetration of water, such as powerful water jets, but not being submerged into water.
Dust- and water-resistanceThe device is dustproof and water-resistant. Water-resistant devices can resist the penetration of water, such as powerful water jets, but not being submerged into water.
Stereo speakersDevices with stereo speakers deliver sound from independent channels on both left and right sides, creating a richer sound and a better experience.
Stereo speakersDevices with stereo speakers deliver sound from independent channels on both left and right sides, creating a richer sound and a better experience.
Sweat resistanceResistance to sweat makes it ideal for use while doing sports.
Sweat resistanceResistance to sweat makes it ideal for use while doing sports.
Tangle-free cableThe cable is designed to minimize tangling.
Tangle-free cableThe cable is designed to minimize tangling.
Weather-sealed (splashproof)The device is protected with extra seals to prevent failures caused by dust, raindrops, and water splashes.
Weather-sealed (splashproof)The device is protected with extra seals to prevent failures caused by dust, raindrops, and water splashes.
Total score for "Design"
Total score for "Design"
Sound quality
Lowest frequencyThe lowest frequency at which the device produces audio. The lower the low-frequency response, the stronger and juicier the bass.
Lowest frequencyThe lowest frequency at which the device produces audio. The lower the low-frequency response, the stronger and juicier the bass.N.A.20Hz80HzN.A.20HzN.A.15HzN.A.40Hz20Hz
Highest frequencyThe highest frequency at which device produces audio. The higher the high-frequency response, the clearer and crispier the treble.
Highest frequencyThe highest frequency at which device produces audio. The higher the high-frequency response, the clearer and crispier the treble.N.A.20000Hz12000HzN.A.20000HzN.A.20000HzN.A.16000Hz20000Hz
Passive noise reductionThe device sits tightly in place, creating an acoustic seal which reduces background noise and prevents your music from leaking out.
Passive noise reductionThe device sits tightly in place, creating an acoustic seal which reduces background noise and prevents your music from leaking out.
Active noise cancellation (ANC)This type of device allows you to listen at lower volume levels, causing less ear fatigue as you don't have to crank up the volume to overcome background noise. Ideal for plane rides and morning commutes.
Active noise cancellation (ANC)This type of device allows you to listen at lower volume levels, causing less ear fatigue as you don't have to crank up the volume to overcome background noise. Ideal for plane rides and morning commutes.
Driver unit sizeThe driver unit is the component that produces sound in the device. Bigger drivers are more powerful and can produce better bass.
Driver unit sizeThe driver unit is the component that produces sound in the device. Bigger drivers are more powerful and can produce better bass.N.A.N.A.14mmN.A.6mmN.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.40mm
Total score for "Sound quality"
Total score for "Sound quality"
Microphone
Number of microphonesMore microphones result in better sound quality and enable the device to filter out background noise.
Number of microphonesMore microphones result in better sound quality and enable the device to filter out background noise.32221310113
Mic sensitivityIt's the 'loudness' of the sound that the microphone can pick up.
Mic sensitivityIt's the 'loudness' of the sound that the microphone can pick up.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.-26dBV/Pa
Noise-canceling microphoneThese microphones are designed to filter out background noise from the desired sound. Especially useful in noisy environments.
Noise-canceling microphoneThese microphones are designed to filter out background noise from the desired sound. Especially useful in noisy environments.
Wind noise reduction microphoneA wind noise reduction microphone is designed to reduce wind interference, providing sharper audio in windy situations.
Wind noise reduction microphoneA wind noise reduction microphone is designed to reduce wind interference, providing sharper audio in windy situations.
Removable microphoneThe microphone can be attached or detached if necessary.
Removable microphoneThe microphone can be attached or detached if necessary.
Total score for "Microphone"
Total score for "Microphone"
Power
Battery level indicatorAn indicator shows you when the device has low battery.
Battery level indicatorAn indicator shows you when the device has low battery.
Battery lifeThe device's battery life (when in use) as given by the manufacturer. With a longer battery life you have to charge the device less often.
Battery lifeThe device's battery life (when in use) as given by the manufacturer. With a longer battery life you have to charge the device less often.N.A.16hN.A.N.A.4.5hN.A.N.A.N.A.13hN.A.
Battery powerBattery power, or battery capacity, represents the amount of electrical energy that a battery can store. More battery power can be an indication of longer battery life.
Battery powerBattery power, or battery capacity, represents the amount of electrical energy that a battery can store. More battery power can be an indication of longer battery life.N.A.210mAhN.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.
Charge timeThe time it takes to fully charge the battery.
Charge timeThe time it takes to fully charge the battery.N.A.1.5hN.A.N.A.2.5hN.A.N.A.N.A.1.5hN.A.
Rechargeable batteryThe battery can be recharged and used over again.
Rechargeable batteryThe battery can be recharged and used over again.
Total score for "Power"
Total score for "Power"
Connectivity
3.5mm male connectorA standard 3.5mm male connector is suitable for use with all MP3 players and computer sound cards.
3.5mm male connectorA standard 3.5mm male connector is suitable for use with all MP3 players and computer sound cards.
Bluetooth versionBluetooth is a wireless technology standard that allows data transfers between devices placed in close proximity, using short-wavelength, ultra-high frequency radio waves. Newer versions provide faster data transfers.
Bluetooth versionBluetooth is a wireless technology standard that allows data transfers between devices placed in close proximity, using short-wavelength, ultra-high frequency radio waves. Newer versions provide faster data transfers.34.22.132.132.12.15N.A.
Bluetooth pairing using NFCDevice supports fast Bluetooth pairing using NFC so it can communicate with other devices over Bluetooth. You can fastly pair devices without entering a code by simply holding one device next to the device with which it is to be paired.
Bluetooth pairing using NFCDevice supports fast Bluetooth pairing using NFC so it can communicate with other devices over Bluetooth. You can fastly pair devices without entering a code by simply holding one device next to the device with which it is to be paired.
USB Type-CThe USB Type-C features reversible plug orientation and cable direction.
USB Type-CThe USB Type-C features reversible plug orientation and cable direction.
WirelessWireless devices allow users more freedom of movement.
WirelessWireless devices allow users more freedom of movement.
Total score for "Connectivity"
Total score for "Connectivity"
Features
Control panel on deviceThere is a control panel on the device body, so you can easily access the volume control or remote without having to interact with a cable or another device it's connected to.
Control panel on deviceThere is a control panel on the device body, so you can easily access the volume control or remote without having to interact with a cable or another device it's connected to.
Headset capabilityA headset is one headphone or pair with a built-in microphone. Headsets can be used for apps that require communication i.e. Skype, games with voice chat, mobile phones, etc.
Headset capabilityA headset is one headphone or pair with a built-in microphone. Headsets can be used for apps that require communication i.e. Skype, games with voice chat, mobile phones, etc.
Travel bag includedThe device comes with its own special case or pouch, which is useful for safe transportation.
Travel bag includedThe device comes with its own special case or pouch, which is useful for safe transportation.
Voice commandsYou can use your voice to control key functions of the device and you can easily access your device without pushing any button.
Voice commandsYou can use your voice to control key functions of the device and you can easily access your device without pushing any button.
Voice promptsWith voice prompts, you will automatically receive information via audio messages – for instance, you may find out that the battery is running low, and it's time to recharge the device.
Voice promptsWith voice prompts, you will automatically receive information via audio messages – for instance, you may find out that the battery is running low, and it's time to recharge the device.
Total score for "Features"
Total score for "Features"

How to choose the right Bluetooth headset for your smartphone

As wireless technology becomes more and more popular, wireless Bluetooth headsets are rapidly evolving, becoming more sophisticated.

Consumers have eagerly embraced Bluetooth headsets due to the ease and convenience with which they can be integrated into their lives, whether they want to have a better audio experience during commutes or workout routines or conduct professional affairs with greater accessibility and efficiency.

As the best wireless headsets match and, in many cases, exceed the capabilities of their traditional wired counterparts, the market continues to expand in terms of the breadth and variety of available products.

Due to the sheer variety of options, we have compiled this guide to give you some guidance and arm you with crucial information concerning the specs and various features of these devices so that you can find the best Bluetooth headset for your needs.

Sound Quality

Noise cancellation: active noise cancellation vs. passive noise cancellation

Noise cancellation is perhaps the most important and desirable feature of a mobile phone headset. As one of the main advantages of Bluetooth headsets is their convenience and ease of use, you can use them to carry on a conversation in a variety of settings, such as crowded subways or noisy intersections.

These environments are quite loud and make it challenging to maintain a phone call or enjoy a movie. Because of this, most of the top Bluetooth headsets employ active noise cancellation (ANC), which involves detecting ambient and environmental noise, and suppressing it by producing sound waves that cancel out the distracting noises.

While this takes care of noise issues affecting inbound audio quality, environmental noises can also disrupt outbound sound quality. If this happens to you during a phone call or video chat, the person on the other end will have a hard time hearing and understanding you.

For this reason, many mobile phone headsets also contain noise-canceling microphones, which filter out distracting background noise from the sounds transmitted through your microphone, ensuring smooth two-way communication.

Most headsets make use of two microphones to reduce unwanted noise. However, some have more than two microphones to ensure top-notch active noise cancellation capabilities. Some headsets offer passive noise isolation instead of active noise cancellation. Whereas active noise cancellation is a function carried out within the headset itself, passive noise cancellation relies solely on the earbuds themselves, acting as a seal that prevents and reduces external noise.

Stereo sound

While the traditional image of a Bluetooth headset consists of a single, simple earpiece delivering mono sound, most of the best products on the market today offer two earpieces producing stereo sound. If you generally use your wireless headset for sending and receiving phone calls, you may still find mono sound adequate. However, most smartphone users are not just making phone calls, but also watch videos on the go, listen to music, and play games – activities that require stereo headsets.

Impedance, sound pressure level, and frequency range

Some of the essential audio specifications to be aware of when researching wireless mobile headsets are impedance, sound pressure level, and frequency range. Impedance refers to the resistance of the device to the flow of electric current.

The sound pressure level (SPL), measured in decibels, is used to determine the sensitivity of a headset. SPL measures the effectiveness with which a headset converts an electrical input into audible sounds, and determines the perceived loudness of sound.

Finally, the frequency range specifies the high, mid, and low sound frequencies, which determine the pitch of the sound.

Usually, manufacturers list the lowest frequency, responsible for bass sounds, and the highest frequency, accountable for the higher-pitched sounds. As with Bluetooth versions, it is crucial to make sure that the audio specifications of your wireless headset are compatible with the smartphones, computers, and audio equipment you plan on using.

Design

Weather-sealed and water-resistant headsets

In looking for a Bluetooth headset with the versatility to withstand any situation, you may want to consider a model that is weather sealed, water-resistant, or waterproof. Weather sealed devices can withstand rain and inclement weather; they are also useful for workouts as they are not damaged by sweat. Water-resistant and waterproof devices can withstand water penetration and even immersion in water. You can read more about the difference between water resistance and waterproofness here.

Bluetooth

The Bluetooth version of the device is also an important specification to consider when making your purchase. So far, five Bluetooth versions have been developed, with the greatest strides in the technology being made in versions 3.0 and 4.0.

Bluetooth 3.0 added high-speed data transfer to the basic wireless connectivity featured in the first two versions, and Bluetooth 4.0 built upon this with further increases in data transfer, security, connectivity, and vastly improved energy efficiency. It also features a variety of sensors, allowing you to collect data on your motion, heart rate, and even body temperature, which has contributed to making Bluetooth devices integral parts of many people's fitness routines.

The top Bluetooth headsets feature Bluetooth version 4.0 or later, such as the Mpow EM10, which features Bluetooth version 4.2. When it comes to the best wireless earbuds such as AirPods and the Jabra Elite 75t, it's standard that they come with Bluetooth version 5.0 at a minimum.

The range of a Bluetooth headset is the greatest distance at which it can connect to another gadget. While Bluetooth 4.0 has a maximum range of 60 meters (200 feet), even high-end headsets begin experiencing connectivity issues at a distance of around 10-20 meters (30-60 feet).

Bluetooth version 5.0, released in 2016, has quadrupled the maximum range capability of Bluetooth devices while also doubling their maximum speed to 50 Mbits/s. When selecting your headset, remember to make sure that the Bluetooth version it runs is compatible with the version supported by the devices you'll be using it with.

Battery life and charging cases

Since the portability of Bluetooth headsets used as a means of communicating via mobile phones is one of their most compelling attributes, your device's battery life is a crucial specification.

A battery providing 7-10 hours of active use will likely suit most users' needs, and you can also find extremely long-lasting models that provide up to 6 hours of talk or listening time between charges.

Charging your battery is also easy and quick in many cases, especially with fast charging capabilities. Additionally, many headsets come with charging cases, which enable you to recharge your device on the go.

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