There was a time when noise cancelling audio gear was the exception rather than the rule; few products had the feature and few buyers were willing to pay the premium to get it. Things have changed. Sure, noise-cancelling audio gear is still a little pricier than the average set of headphones or earbuds, but it’s really arrived in the mainstream. In the last few years, we’ve seen ANC (active noise cancellation) appear in every level of earbuds, from budget to premium.
It’s no mystery why that’s the case. Noise cancellation is a godsend for anyone who has a noisy commute or who works at home with road and street noise right out the window. And the technology has gotten cheaper and more widely available. Put those factors together, and the market is virtually flooded with noise-cancelling earbuds.
The best noise-cancelling earbuds are comfortable to wear, dampen or eliminate background noise, sound good when you’re listening to music, and offer extra features like voice assistance or automatically pausing audio when you take them off. Which earbuds have the right combination of those features for your needs and budget? Follow along on this roundup of the 11 best noise cancelling earbuds, and let me help you decide which is right for you.