Best Splurge Earbuds
- Shure SE425-CL
Best All-Round Earbuds
- SoundMAGIC E11C
Best Budget Earbuds
- Avantree E171
Despite many phone manufacturers’ attempts to kill off the 3.5mm jack, many of us still prefer to use a solid set of wired earbuds. Compared to a wireless set you don’t have to worry about battery life, a separate carry case, or having them just fall out. Compared to a set of over-ear headphones, they’re less difficult to store, less intrusive, and – generally – cheaper.
If you’re looking to get a set of wired earbuds, it can be tempting to just go for the cheapest set you can find, but it can be worth spending a bit more to get a better-quality set.
To help you find a great pair, we’ve drawn up a list of the best wired earbuds in 2021.
- 20-40kHz range
- In-line controls
- Triple drivers
- 3 drivers
- 1.2m cable
The 1More Triple Driver In-Ear headphones have – as the name would suggest – three different drivers to produce sound. The headphones weigh in at 18 grams and have a set of in-line controls and a microphone. They also come with other extras, such as a carrying case and a shirt clip.
The headphones and the extras that come with them have a premium feel. The earbuds themselves are all metal, they come with a selection of three different foam and 6 different silicone tips, so you can get the perfect fit. The 1.2-metre cable is braided fabric at the top, and then plastic below the Y split.
- 15Hz – 22kHz
- In-line controls and microphone
- Machined aluminium earbuds
- 10mm driver
- 1.2m cable
The SoundMAGIC E11C earbuds are the wired version of the wireless E11BT headphones. They weigh just 15 grams and use a 10mm neodymium driver. The earbuds themselves, the Y split, and the angled 3.5mm jack are all made from aluminium.
The package includes a storage case and three sizes of silicone tips to choose between to provide the optimum passive noise-cancelling seal. The inline controls include three buttons and a microphone.
- Three in-line controls and microphone
- THX certified
- 4 drivers
- 1.25m cable
The 1More Quad Driver In-Ear Headphones are a more advanced version of the triple driver version at the top of this list. The addition of a fourth driver improves the sound, especially the clarity in the higher ranges, but does add to the cost.
The headphones weigh in at 18.5 grams and have a 1.2 metre Kevlar wrapped cable. the THX certification shows the high level of attention to detail performed when tuned by Grammy Award winning sound engineer Luca Bignard.
- Over ear hook for a secure fit while exercising
- Sweat proof
- Multi-function in-line controls and microphone
- Single unspecified driver
- 1.2m cable
The Avantree E171 earphones have an ear hook so they can stay secure while you exercise. To make sure they don’t break when you’re working out, they’re advertised as sweatproof, although no official IP rating is specified.
The three silicon tips give you size choices to ensure the perfect fit. A shirt clip helps to keep the cable out of your way when you’re exercising. One of the great things about these earphones is the price, which is very low. The low price means you can’t expect wonders from them, but the quality is certainly satisfactory.
- Professional quality in-ear monitors
- Detachable cable
- 2 drivers
- 1.6m cable
The Shure SE425-CL Professional Sound Isolating Earphones are professional-grade in-ear monitors, designed to passively cancel out background noise for the best audio experience. These earphones can passively cancel out 37dB of background noise when using one of the broad range of included tips that fits you.
The earphones themselves are made out of clear plastic, allowing you to see the inner workings. They also feature a detachable cable which allows you to swap out to use a separately sold Bluetooth addon. The main downside of these earphones is the price, professional gear is expensive, and while these aren’t even close to being the most expensive earbuds in the series, they’re still incredibly expensive for earbuds.
That was our list of the best wired earbuds in 2021. Have you got a set of wired earbuds that you’d recommend? Feel free to let us know down below.