Samsung has long defended the headphone jack as the rest of its competitors ditched the legacy port. While we are more than a little sad to see it go, we aren’t too surprised to learn the Note 10 and Note 10 Plus no longer feature a headphone jack. Now that the headphone jack is gone, you’re going to want a good pair of wireless headphones. That’s where Android Authority and the Sound Guys team come in!
Below are some of the best wireless headphones you can buy for the upcoming Note 10 and Note 10 Plus. Keep in mind we focused on true wireless earbuds because those are arguably the future, but there are plenty of “traditional” wireless headphones that are worth checking out over at our sibling site, SoundGuys.
Best Wireless Headphones for Note 10 and Note 10 Plus:
There’s a certain synergy when you use earbuds that are made by the same company that built your phone, and that’s why we highly recommend the Samsung Galaxy Buds for Note 10 buyers.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds not only look great, but sound good too. The sound signature on the Galaxy Buds is surprisingly neutral-leaning, which may be attributed to AKG’s tuning. Due to the accurate frequency response, harmonic distortion and auditory masking are minimized. This results in greater detail and clarity than earbuds which boost bass frequencies. Those with eclectic musical taste should seriously consider these as they’re sure to perform well with nearly any genre.
The Galaxy Buds are also exceptional when it comes to battery life, with only a few like the Creative Outlier Air beating it. In our internal tests, Samsung’s true wireless earphones lasted 6 hours, 32 minutes on average before they needed to be recharged. Considering most commutes are shorter than that, these should last you through most of the day.
Best sound quality: Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless
When an old industry leader comes in with a high-end product, we pay attention and so should you. Sennheiser’s debut into the true wireless field offers extremely good sound quality, but it comes as a fairly steep price. You get what you pay for, however, as the Momentum True Wireless sound a lot better than their peers.
Unfortunately, there aren’t much in the way of features here, and what you’re paying for is raw performance. If you want weather sealing, Qualcomm TrueWireless Radio Plus, memory foam tips, active noise canceling, or health tracking: you’ll have to look elsewhere.
However, Sennheiser’s app allows you to control how your music sounds so you can EQ yourself. You can also add in a little bit of outside noise so you can hear your surroundings on the street, or you can just shut them out by hitting the toggle in the app. Fairly intuitive touch controls also give you the ability to control your music, answer/end calls, and adjust the volume. If you take an earbud out, it automatically pauses your music.
Best for noise canceling: Sony WF-1000XM3
Sony’s entry on this list is a solid jack of all trades, and a master of noise cancellation. Though not as good as its big brother, the WH-1000XM3, these ‘buds do a fantastic job at attenuating low-frequency sounds. This is super important because the base frequencies of most music live in the lows, which are very hard for in-ears to block out. If low-frequency noise gets into your ear canal, you’ll perceive a larger loss in audio quality due to auditory masking.
These true wireless earbuds sound good, too. Even though the only high-quality Bluetooth codec supported is AAC, the new QN1e chip and DSEE HX processing promote clear audio reproduction. Again, it’s disappointing to see such limited codec support, but oftentimes it’s hard for listeners to distinguish between high-quality codecs anyway.
Battery life is above average: we were able to draw out 4.76 hours of playback before placing them into the case for a recharge. Quick charging is afforded, and just 10 minutes in the case affords 1.5 hours of playback. To completely charge the case takes 3.5 hours via the included USB-C cable.
While the Sony WF-1000XM3 are quite expensive, they’re the best ANC true wireless ‘buds out there. These attenuate plane engines and car rumbles extremely well. Regardless of how far your traveling, you can rest assured that it’ll be a quiet endeavor.
Best for workouts: Beats Powerbeats Pro
If you’re looking for a pair of workout buds, you can’t do much better than the Beats Powerbeats Pro. The earhook design means everyone can wear it without worrying if they’re going to fall out. Even better, these are IPX4 rated so you’ll be protected from sweat damage while working out at the gym. There’s also great connection quality thanks to the H1 wireless chip inside that makes pairing seamless.
It’s also worth mentioning that the Beats Powerbeats Pro have absolutely stunning battery life compared to other true wireless buds. Our tests suggest you can expect to get around 10+ hours on a constant output of 75dB which is insane
Best under $100: Creative Outlier Air
If battery life and affordability are your main concerns, the Creative Outlier Air is king. These provide some of the best battery life, save for the Beats Powerbeats Pro. In our testing Creative’s true wireless earphones lasted 7 hours 47 minutes on average before they needed to be recharged. Considering most commutes are shorter than that, these should last you through most of the day — even if you take them to the gym, which you can thanks to their IPX5 water-resistant rating.
This is better for power users that need a near-constant earphone presence. While 76 percent of poll respondents (n=5,120) use their headphones under three hours a day, those that need more than that should look to models like the Outlier Air or the Jabra Elite 65t.
Sound quality isn’t the most accurate given how the earbuds exaggerate bass frequencies. Additionally, they don’t isolate very well, meaning outsider noise may be heard with the earbuds in. That said, the sound remains surprisingly clear and the reproduction of three-dimensional space is impressive. Worth noting: some listeners have experienced connectivity issues. However, SoundGuys’ review unit and separately purchased Creative Outlier Air unit showed no signs of battery life or connection strength issues.
If you want a pair of true wireless earbuds that does everything well with aptX and AAC support for less than $80, then the Creative Outlier Air is the best pick out there.
Best under $50: JLab JBuds Air
A pair of true wireless earbuds that are under $50 and yet don’t suck? That’s exactly what you get with the JLab JBuds Air. While they’re not perfect, they hit a good note with their $49 price tag, and they don’t force you into making any major tradeoffs. Battery life is decent, but not amazing, same for the sound… and the fit.
There are a couple other rough edges, like the fact that calls only come in through the right earbud—and that they’re bulky. However, the app the JLab JBuds Air comes with works surprisingly well, and you wouldn’t be able to tell that these are far cheaper than the rest of the models on this list. If you’re not ready to commit to true wireless earbuds, the JLab JBuds Air are a great first pair.