Best headphones under £200 2022: Top options from Apple, Sony, Bose and more – British GQ

A solid pair of wireless headphones should be your best friend if you spend any amount of time listening to music away from home. Got a lengthy commute to work? Off on your holiday travels? Love banging out your playlist in the garden? Everything is made a little better if you’ve got some high-quality tracks to keep you motivated, but we realise that some headphones can get more than a little pricey. Not everyone has the funds to purchase Apple’s obscenely expensive AirPods Max, but frankly, you really don’t need to spend a wad to get the best sound quality.

Audio brands have spent a long while building excellent, comfortable noise-cancelling headphones for the modern audiophile that don’t exceed £200, and we know exactly which models are worth considering. And they come in all shapes and designs as well, whether you’re after a top pair of wireless headphones like Sony’s premium WH-1000XM3 or a more flexible, portable pair of Bluetooth wireless earbuds like those from Apple.

So which do you go for? There’s a lot to choose from and if you’re on a budget, you’ll want to squeeze as much value out of your hard-earned pennies, so read on to find out our top picks of the best headphones under £200.

Best headphones under £200

Apple is well known for its punchy, high-quality Bluetooth headphones, but the best you’ll find under £200 right now are the AirPods 3rd Gen that come with instant connectivity to iPhones, a decent, high-quality soundstage, and the rock-solid Apple smarts.

Keen to get stuck into the world of active noise-cancelling headphones (ANC)? Sony’s top-tier WH-1000XM4s are our favourite headphones overall, but those on a budget will find plenty to admire with the XM3s. Great sound, a gorgeous studio headphone design, and exceptional noise cancellation to dispel background noise are what you’ll find with these brilliant cans.

Looking for something to keep you company during training? Any wireless headphones that can keep up with your running schedule are worth considering in our books, and these affordable ones from Bose suit those needs, with great sweat and water resistance, a decent battery life, and excellent sound quality to keep you motivated.

How much should I spend on headphones?

As with many gadgets, it’s easy to be wooed with specs and end up overspending on a pair of headphones. If you’re keeping the belt tight at the moment, there are plenty of high-quality over-ear wireless headphones and earbuds that can keep up with a busy lifestyle of travelling, commuting or exercising.

The best wireless headsets with exceptional sound and build quality can easily set you back £300 or more, but the midrange sweet spot is between £100 and £200. At this price range, you’ll find some of the more advanced features like active noise cancellation, aptX audio playback, smart voice control, and touch controls, without having to sacrifice too much audio quality.

If you’re interested in finding out what are the best headphones, we’ve got you covered, with roundups on the best true wireless earbuds, noise-cancelling headphones, over-ear headphones, and running headphones.

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