Do you want in on a little secret? You don’t have to go broke over wireless earbuds.
The iPhone 7 has sparked the vanishing act of the headphone jack of old, leaving a bevy of consumers in a frenzy to find a way to wirelessly enjoy their tunes. For many, the price tag of more premium options, including Apple’s new $159 AirPods, can be a bit daunting, especially with so many options on the market.
Fortunately, affordable wireless earbuds are a plenty, with almost all of the value options matching the top competitors in both user features and streaming quality. Under the price point of $50, there’s an overabundance of Bluetooth earbuds vying for your attention.
To help you cut through the noise, we’ve gone ahead and found the very best in wireless earbuds under $50, balancing attention to quality with an unbeatable price tag. With hours of digesting consumer and professional reviews, as well as in-depth, hands-on experience, this guide is your one stop shop for affordable wireless listening.
Best Overall: Zivigo ZV 750 Bluetooth Headphones
Truthfully, the Zivigo ZV 750 Bluetooth Headphones would be formidable competition for headphones at any price point, but for only $49.99, they are a no brainer.
Zivigo’s wireless earbuds boast many core features of their more pricy competitors, including Bluetooth 4.1 for clear streaming, a comfortable around-ear design, and a tight seal to lock in the best sound in the noisiest environments (think: coach seating with a baby behind you.) The box includes multiple earbud sizes, allowing you to customize until you find perfect fit to your ear. These earbuds also allow up to 30 feet between you and your device, allowing for a truly untethered listening experience.
Let’s dive into some of the standout elements of the Zivigo ZV 750 earbuds. First and foremost, these headphones display some of the best noise cancellation on the value market, using CVC 6.0 to effectively block out all the distractions of the busy world. The ZV 750s are also certified IPX7 waterproof, not just sweatproof like the competition. While you wouldn’t want to cross the English Channel with these on, heavy rain or running water shouldn’t affect them whatsoever, freeing you up to finally belt Rick Astley in the shower.
As for battery life, Zivigo’s earbuds will grant you anywhere from 6 to 8 hours of listening on a single 1.5 hour charge — a fairly standard life for earbuds of this style. If you’re prepping for a long trip and want to save the juice on the ZV 750 headphones, a single charge will also give you up to 240 hours of standby time.
Of course, upper echelon earbuds will always have one advantage: pure sound. While these Zivigo earbuds actually hold their own to the common ear, there’s no doubt that audiophiles will notice the lower quality drivers. Still, with some excellent noise cancelling technology, the thump of the bass and the crisp treble are given room to breath, making for a surprisingly well-balanced mix.
Overall, there really aren’t any true negatives to the Zivigo ZV 750 earbuds, especially given their low price point. With all the features of the top competitors, and then some, you’d be hard pressed to find a better pair of wireless earbuds under $50.
The Zivigo ZV 750 Bluetooth Headphones are on sale for $49.99 on Amazon
Runner-up: Photive PH-BTE70 Bluetooth Headphones
Quality, meet insane affordability.
At a price point of $25, the Photive PH-BTE70 Bluetooth Headphones seem cheap — suspiciously cheap. But rest assured knowing that these headphones are anything but low quality.
Of course, these Photive wireless headphones aren’t reinventing the wireless wheel. Instead, they simply offer some stellar features at a price that can’t be beat, with a comfortable design to match. The around-ear hook and tight sealing earbuds make for a quiet, no-nonsense package that feels as comfortable as some of the pricier competition.
If you’re looking for an affordable wireless earbud set to take to the gym, these just may be the ticket. The hooked design prevents the earbud from slipping out, even during the most strenuous workout. Although they aren’t waterproof like our top pick, they are sweatproof, making them perfect wear while you run to Rush’s 2112 in its entirety (respect.) In fact, you can run through multiple albums with a battery life of 6 hours on a single charge.
As for the inner workings of the Photive earbuds, it’s all fairly astounding for the price. These bad Larrys boast Bluetooth 4.0 with with aptX codec for high fidelity music streaming, putting them neck and neck with the competition. As for sound replication…hey, they’re $25. Don’t get us wrong — these don’t sound bad at all, they’re just simply outmatched by the pricier competition. But since you get what you pay for, these earbuds sound surprisingly clear for the price.
If you’re beginning the venture into the wide world of wireless listening, the Photive PH-BTE70 earbuds are quite the bang for the buck. If you’re on a tight budget and looking for wireless earbuds, you really can’t go wrong with these.
The Photive PH-BTE70 Bluetooth Headphones are on sale for $24.95 on Amazon