Top 5 active noise cancelling truly wireless earbuds

Here’s our top 5 pick for the best earbuds with ANC, the perfect travelling companion for music lovers wanting to block out the noisy world.

For our top 5 AirPods competitors, click here. Or to see our top 5 over-ear headphones with ANC, click here.

Our criteria for ANC earbuds are great sound quality, solid noise cancellation, good controls, in a compact package, with handy smart features.


1. Bose QuietComfort EarBuds – $279
  • Noise cancelling earbuds—11 levels of active noise cancelling let you enjoy music, podcasts & videos without distractions. Transparency Mode lets the outside world in for quick conversations.
  • Acclaimed Bose sound—Crisp, clear details. Deep, full bass. The innovations in these noise cancelling earphones produce exciting, lifelike sound that’s full and balanced at every volume level.
  • Comfortable earbuds—Easy to wear all day long because every surface that touches your ear is made from soft silicone. Includes 3 eartip sizes to help you get the best fit.
  • Sweat & weather resistant—These IPX4-rated wireless noise cancelling earbuds are proven to pump out great-sounding music, even when they’re subjected to rain, sleet, hail, snow or sweat.
  • Powerful battery—These wireless earbuds play for up to 6 hours on a single charge. The wireless charging case provides up to 12 more hours battery life—and it’s compatible with any Qi-certified charging mat.
  • Simple touch controls—Controlling your wireless noise cancelling earbuds is as easy as tapping and pressing the surface—similar to how you control your phone.
  • Built with Bluetooth 5.1—Bluetooth earbuds work within 10 m of your device. When you’re on calls, the microphone system rejects most of the noise around you. Compatible with iOS and Android.

Bose provide the best sound quality and active noise cancellation you can find in earbuds. There are a few minor issues, such as a bulky case and a lack of true customization for controls, but if you can see past the smaller details, these are the best money can buy. Bose QuietComfort Earbuds are brand new, so you won’t be finding any great discounts any time soon.


2. AirPods Pro – $219 (sale price)
  • Active noise cancellation for immersive sound
  • Transparency mode for hearing and connecting with the world around you
  • Three sizes of soft, tapered silicone tips for a customizable fit
  • Sweat and water resistant
  • Adaptive EQ automatically tunes music to the shape of your ear
  • Easy setup for all your Apple devices
  • Quick access to Siri by saying “Hey Siri”
  • The Wireless Charging Case delivers more than 24 hours of battery life

I believe the AirPods Pro are the best option for iPhone owners with at least one other Apple device, such as a Mac or iPad. AirPods’ quick pairing feature, along with automatic device switching and other smart features make them perfect for those in the eco-system. The battery life is the weakest of the five, but being released around a year ago means they can be found on sale quite often.


3. Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 – $269.95 (sale price)
  • Enjoy unrivalled high-end stereo sound created by Sennheiser’s unique 7mm dynamic earbud audio drivers.
  • Switch off your surroundings and focus on the deep bass, the natural mids and the clear treble thanks to Active Noise Cancellation providing you with high-fidelity sound even in noisy environments
  • Experience uninterrupted play time with the new 7-hour battery life that can be extended up to 28 hours with the charging case for your wireless headphones.
  • In the mood for a movie marathon? With its ergonomic and lightweight design, you can experience unbeatable sound in unbelievable comfort when lounging in front of the TV or while strolling through the city.
  • Control your exceptional sound with customisable touchpad technology built into both earbuds handsfree via voice control or with your smart devices.

Sennheiser come in at third place with their fantastic sounding Momentum True Wireless 2. They have great battery in and out of the case, however the case is a little on the larger size and lacks wireless charging. Retailing at $300, these are the most expensive earbuds on the list and still a little too pricy while on sale.


4. Samsung Galaxy Buds Live – $169.99
  • Hear every sound come alive. 12mm speakers with sound by AKG work together with Galaxy Buds Live’s ergonomic design to deliver spacious sound, while the large driver and bass duct help emit deep bass with air flow that lets sound flow seamlessly.
  • Made for your ears. Galaxy Buds Live sit softly inside the ear, giving you a fit for all-day comfort with less fatigue.
  • Active Noise Cancellation. The first Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) for open type on Galaxy’s true wireless buds keeps the noise out, but lets the world in. It reduces background noises without missing what’s important, like voices and announcements, so you hear more of what you want to hear

A truly unique design in a sea of circular and stem-like wireless earbuds. While the Galaxy Buds Live offer ANC, the lack of a seal lets in a considerable amount of noise in loud settings. These may be more suited to those looking for a more open design. With a launch price of $170, these are the cheapest ANC earbuds worth your consideration.


5. Sony WF-1000XM3 – $228
  • Digital noise canceling: Industry leading anc lends a personalized, virtually soundproof experience. Phone call: A built-in mic enables you to take hands-free calls
  • 24bit Audio signal processing delivers dramatically improved sound quality
  • Battery life up to 24 hours with carrying case (with 10min quick charge for 90min of play time)
  • Easy and clear hands free calling; Leave your phone where it is, just speak with a double tap to the earbud
  • Truly wireless design with uninterrupted L/R simultaneous Bluetooth transmission
  • Alexa enabled for voice access to music, information, and more. Activate with a simple touch.
  • Smart listening by adaptive sound control automatically switches to ambient sound mode based on your activity
  • Smart listening by adaptive sound control automatically switches to ambient sound mode based on your activity
  • Quick attention mode and wearing detection make conversations effortless
  • Sony, headphones connect app for Android/iOS to use smart listening technology to control your ambient sound settings

One of the best sounding and effective ANC pairs when released in August last year, but have since been overtaken by the competition with a bulky design, no sweat/water resistance or multi-device support. The 1000XM3 are due a refresh. While they’re currently not on sale on Amazon, they can often be found discounted.

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