Best (on-ear) headphones 2021: Online reviewers weigh in


The Beats Solo3 headphones use what Apple calls Pure ANC (Adaptive Noise Cancelation) to give you uninterrupted sound. ANC is a form of noise cancelation that uses advanced algorithms to monitor the sounds around you and adjust the level of noise cancellation to best match your environment. What makes it really cool is that it adjusts for sound leakage caused by your hair, glasses, the shape of your ear, and even the movement of your head. But you can turn Pure ANC off if you want to enjoy longer battery life. 

Available in more than a dozen fun colors, the Beats Solo3 headphones were the first to use the new Apple W1 chip (which are also now in the AirPods.) When the Beats Solo3 headphones launched in 2016, Raymond Wong had this to say:

“With the W1 chip, Beats was able to improve the Solo 2’s 12 hours of battery life up to 40 hours, an increase of over 3x.

The best wireless headphones, some of which cost more than the Solo 3, only get up to half the battery life of Beats’ new headphones. The only one that I could find that matches the Solo 3 on battery life is Sony’s DRBTN20, which seems to have middling sound.”

According to the PCMag review, the Beats Solo3 headphones have “Powerful, bass-forward (but balanced) audio performance” and feature “feature exceptionally comfortable earpads.” Though the headband could be more comfortable, the 300-foot Bluetooth range helps balance out some of the cons.

Amazon reviewers have plenty of good things to say about their Beats, racking up more than 3,000 reviews on the site and netting the headphones an average of 4 out of 5 stars.

Reviewer MindSeedTV had this to say:

“The Bluetooth connectivity is very simple with apple products. As soon as I turned the headphones on I was prompted with a message on my iphone asking If I would like to connect to the Solo3. Very cool. Also You can travel 300 feet away from your cell phone while wearing these and the music will not break up. That is much further than any other Bluetooth device is currently capable. Most devices allow you to get 30 ft away. So if you would prefer to charge your headphones a lot less and walk further away from your cellphone while wearing these. GO with these! if you don’t mind charging the headphones every few days and you don’t plan on getting too far from your phone. Get the Beats solo2 wireless. Sound quality and music experience will be EXACTLY the SAME!”

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