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Best wireless earbuds under $100

Stay cheap while staying wireless.

Published onMay 15, 2024

The Best
Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC
MSRP: $99.99
Check price
Battery life
LDAC, AAC, SBC codecs
Fast pair
Wireless charging
Chunky case
Many EQ presets are too bassy
Best for Android
Samsung Galaxy Buds FE
MSRP: $99.99
Check price
Small case
Good ANC
Minimal moisture resistance
Information-hungry app
Too bassy
Best portability
1MORE ComfoBuds Mini
MSRP: $99.00
Check price
Small, portable, durable build
Very comfortable
Great noise canceling for price
Good sound with SoundID integration
Wireless charging
Sound depends on listening mode
No custom EQ
Poor microphone quality
Best workout
Jabra Elite 4
MSRP: $99.99
Check price
Sound quality
aptX for Android users
Five band EQ
Fast Pair and Swift Pair
Lightweight case
Great isolation
Active noise cancelling isn't amazing
No AAC for Apple users
Might not fit large ears
Controls have minimal customization
Bang for your buck
JLab JBuds Mini
MSRP: $39.99
Check price
Extremely portable
IP55 rated
Good isolation
Good companion app
Easily lost
May fall out of some ears

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Just a few years ago, functional and reliable cheap true wireless earbuds would have been an oxymoron, but now they’re being released in droves. You no longer have to shell out $150-plus for a pair of solid, truly wireless earbuds. Instead, as technology has progressed, you can save money and enjoy the latest and greatest audio engineering. Here are the best wireless earbuds under $100.

  • This list of the best wireless earbuds under $100 was updated on May 15, 2024, to add a section on the Nothing Ear (a).
  • Be sure to check out our list of the best wireless earbuds under $50 for more great value options.

Why is the Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC the best pair of wireless earbuds under $100 for most?

The Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC with the buds out of the case shown on a wood top.
Harley Maranan / SoundGuys
These are definitely a contender for some of the best affordable noise canceling earbuds based on performance and value.

You’d be hard-pressed to find earbuds for a Benjamin Franklin that do most of the tasks the Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC promises. With an IPX4 rating, long battery life, and good ANC with additional wind reduction and adaptive noise canceling features, these earbuds have more features than most name-brands at this price.

Typical of most consumer wireless earbuds, the Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC boosts bass and treble compared to our headphone preference curve. The accompanying app gives you a whopping 22 EQ presets alongside a labeled eight-band equalizer so you can fine-tune your listening experience. Anker kitted out the Soundcore Liberty 4 NC with Bluetooth 5.3 and LDAC, AAC, and SBC codecs. Android users will likely get the most out of the LDAC codec. Meanwhile, iPhones will default to the AAC codec. Oh, and they also support Bluetooth multipoint, so you can simultaneously connect to more than one device.

For most people, the Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC are simply good, value-priced earbuds. They tick off most boxes, from the nearly 10 hours of battery life with ANC on to the responsive touch controls.

Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NCAnker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC
SG recommended
Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC
Price ANC • Battery life • LDAC, AAC, SBC codecs
MSRP: $99.99
These are definitely a contender for some of the best affordable noise canceling earbuds based on performance and value. With an IPX4 rating, long battery life, and good ANC, these are worth a go. You might not want to go for a run with them, but otherwise they're decent.

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Typical of most consumer wireless earbuds, the Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC boosts bass and treble compared to our headphone preference curve.

The chart below shows how the sound of the Soundcore Liberty 4 NC was assessed by the Multi-Dimensional Audio Quality Score (MDAQS) algorithm from HEAD Acoustics.

This chart shows the MDAQS results for the Anker Soundcore Liberty 4 NC in SBC soundcore signature EQ mode. The Timbre score is 4.9, The Distortion score is 3.9, the Immersiveness score is 4.8, and the Overall Score is 4.9).
An overall score of 4.9 means most people will be happy with the sound quality.

The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE bring good ANC for the price

A hand holds the open case of the Samsung Galaxy Buds FE.
Harley Maranan / SoundGuys

The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE hit the sweet spot for sub-$100 earbuds, combining practical design with solid noise cancelation capabilities. With a small, sleek case that fits in any pocket and is charged via USB-C, these earbuds are an excellent pick for the on-the-go listener. A snug fit is ensured with three different ear tip sizes included, although their IPX2 rating only offers minimal moisture resistance, so they’re not quite gym-ready. Despite this, their good ANC makes them ideal for commuters looking to drown out the rumble of daily travel, canceling up to 30dB of outside noise.

Operation is simple, with touch-sensitive controls that can be customized via the Samsung Wearable app. In terms of sound, the Buds FE offers a bass-forward audio profile that may require some EQ tweaking for balanced listening. They may not satisfy every audiophile’s palate, but the enhanced low-end is a feature many will welcome in noisy environments. The sound may lean heavily on bass, but the overall functionality and design make them a smart choice for everyday use.

Samsung Galaxy Buds FESamsung Galaxy Buds FE
SG recommended
Samsung Galaxy Buds FE
Up to 6 hours battery • ANC • SmartThings Find
MSRP: $99.99
Comfortable sound at a comfortable price
The Samsung Galaxy Buds FE are a capable set of true wireless earbuds. Don't let the small price fool you, these buds are equipped with ANC, Ambient mode, SmartThings tracking, and easy-pair with your Galaxy devices.

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Given the price point, we shouldn’t be too harsh on the earbuds deviating from our headphone preference curve. Most people will probably enjoy the boosted bass when they’re out in the noisy world — it helps make sounds in your music that can sometimes get drowned out much easier to hear.

The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 noise canceling true wireless earbuds in the open charging case, partially obscured by greenery.
Lily Katz / SoundGuys
This set of noise canceling earbuds is a good option for those who don’t for the ability to submerge the earbuds.

Initially retailing for about $150, the introduction of the more premium Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro (and time) has helped drop the price point of the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2. Occasionally, you’ll find these well beneath the $100 threshold, which is definitely worth snagging on sale. Still, for roughly $20 more, they are a pretty good upgrade. There is little trade-off with ANC, but the Galaxy Buds 2 does have better sound quality and features.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2Samsung Galaxy Buds 2
Samsung Galaxy Buds 2
Compact design • In-app ear tip fit test • Sound quality
MSRP: $149.00
A fine pair of noise canceling earbuds that might get lost in the confusing line of other Buds.
The Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 don't rattle the world of audio wearables, but they do their job well as a pair of everyday earphones. Sound quality is very good and bound to please most ears, and the noise canceling edges out that of the Galaxy Buds Pro. Still, you may have a hard time choosing the Buds 2 over the more premium Buds Pro and more affordable Buds Plus.

The 1MORE ComfoBuds Mini is a pint-sized pick

1MORE ComfoBuds Mini in hand
The charging case keeps the earbuds powered up throughout the day when not in use.

For under $100, the 1MORE ComfoBuds Mini has some of the smallest earbuds (3.7g each) on the market with some ANC on tap. In white, red, and black color options, the IPX5-rated buds can handle most daily excursions.

Interestingly, the ANC is pretty good with a function to filter wind noise, but the small size means you might not get as much environmental isolation as a more effective seal can offer. It sounds pleasant, although, for some reason, the tuning gets more bassy when you turn on the ANC. That might be a bonus for some listeners who use extra bass for focus. You will need to rely on the app to activate ANC rather than touch controls, and 1MORE customizes the sound for you based on your fit.

The battery lasts 5 hours and 19 minutes per charge with ANC. Considering the minute size of the ComfoBuds Mini (and, in turn, the internal batteries), that’s a rather impressive figure. AAC and SBC codecs are your sole options for Bluetooth connection. For the price, it’s a good pick.

1MORE ComfoBuds Mini1MORE ComfoBuds Mini
1MORE ComfoBuds Mini
Small, portable, durable build • Very comfortable • Great noise canceling for price
MSRP: $99.00
Small, comfortable earbuds that don't sacrifice features
Perfect for anyone with small ears, 1MORE ComfoBuds Mini offer good sound quality, effective noise canceling, and wireless charging. They're also water resistance which makes them a safe pick for sweaty workouts.

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Athletes and exercise enthusiasts should pick up the Jabra Elite 4

A hand holds the Jabra Elite 4 open in front of green foliage.
Jasper Lastoria / SoundGuys
The Jabra Elite 4

With the Jabra Elite 4, you get Bluetooth 5.2 along with SBC and aptX Bluetooth codec support. (Sorry, iPhone owners, no AAC here, although it still works just fine with iPhones.) Like most other Jabra products, the Elite 4 is built to endure with its IP55 dust and water-resistant build, making it great for exercise. As it lacks stabilizers, it will depend on your specific in-ear fit.

Jabra features ANC and HearThrough (transparency mode) with these affordable buds and a comfortable, sleek design with four color choices. The earbuds hardly protrude from the ear and are lightweight. They feature a multifunction button for playback and call controls and, surprisingly, Bluetooth multipoint. You can even select a designated smart assistant (Siri or Google Assistant only) to help execute simple commands.

While Jabra’s Sound+ app (iOS/Android) usually adds a significant number of software features to its other headsets, the Elite 4 mainly sports a personalized ANC, five-band equalizer, and HearThrough mode. You can also enjoy Spotify Tap integration through the earbuds for Android users, something more companies like Samsung and Skullcandy are investing in.

Jabra nails all the fundamentals with these earphones, like excellent sound quality and impressive isolation, making it a great pick for anyone’s daily driver. The ANC isn’t all that impressive, but the isolation is enough for most folks.

Jabra Elite 4Jabra Elite 4
SoundGuys Editor's Choice
Jabra Elite 4
Multipoint connectivity • Noise-canceling • In-app custom EQ
MSRP: $99.99
Affordable Jabra earbuds with mighty features for the price
With a reasonable price for ANC true wireless earbuds, the Jabra Elite 4 offer solid battery life, a good fit, and great connectivity.

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Compared to our headphone preference curve, the Jabra Elite 4 fares well. Its frequency response shows that it boosts low end slightly more than our ideal at roughly 150Hz and below. Low mids are 3dB to 5dB quieter than our target. Besides 1kHz to 2kHz and at a peak at 10kHz, the Elite 4 under-emphasizes treble. The reduced output above 10kHz shows itself more in overtone details, rather than specific instruments. Basically, it sounds good for most listeners.

The JLab JBuds Mini are good bang for the buck

A photo of the JLab JBuds Mini in their case.
Christian Thomas / SoundGuys
The backs of the earbuds have a touch interface that allows tap controls. Customize them through the JLab app.

With their ultra-compact design, the JLab JBuds Mini offers a robust set of features that belie their modest price point of $40. These earbuds can conveniently attach to a keychain, ensuring they are always within reach. Their IP55 rating brings resistance to dust and water, making them suitable for workouts and active use. Users will appreciate the good isolation and the companion app, which features EQ customization and a “Find My” option to mitigate the risk of losing these tiny devices.

The sound quality is commendable for the price, offering a consumer-friendly tuning with an emphasis on bass, which, while not high-fidelity, provides a satisfying listening experience for everyday use. Alongside thoughtful features like touch controls, these are a great choice for budget-conscious consumers.

JLab JBuds MiniJLab JBuds Mini
SG recommended
JLab JBuds Mini
Extremely portable • Price • IP55 rated
MSRP: $39.99
The JLab JBuds Mini are a diminutive set of earbuds that you can attach to your keychain. However, they offer more features than you might expect for such an inexpensive pair of earbuds. If you're looking for cheap earbuds that can handle a workout, put these on your shortlist.

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Against our headphone preference curve, these emphasize bass a bit much, but it isn’t to a wild extreme. However, there is a strong emphasis on the highs that can make sibilant sounds very loud at higher volumes.

The Nothing Ear (a) is a good jack-of-all-trades

Nothing Ear (a) earbuds inside charging case on table.
Chase Bernath / SoundGuys
The Ear (a) comes in a fun yellow color option.

While the Nothing Ear (a) may not excel in any particular area, it offers a solid all-around experience for those on a tight budget. At $99, these earbuds deliver decent sound quality, impressive noise cancelation, and respectable battery life, making them a great value proposition.

The Nothing Ear (a) boasts a comfortable and lightweight design and an IP54 rating for dust and water resistance, making it suitable for workouts or outdoor activities. The earbuds support Bluetooth 5.3 with the LDAC codec for high-quality audio streaming on compatible Android devices.

Although the sound quality won’t blow you away, it’s perfectly adequate for casual listening. There is a slight bass emphasis that can be further enhanced through the companion app’s equalizer settings. The noise cancelation performance is commendable for the price, effectively reducing environmental noise.

With a rated battery life of nearly 9 hours on a single charge and a total of 42.5 hours with the charging case, the Nothing Ear (a) should easily get you through a day’s worth of use. The clear voice microphone performance is also a standout feature, ensuring crisp call quality even in noisy environments.

If you’re looking for a well-rounded pair of true wireless earbuds that won’t break the bank, the Nothing Ear (a) is a compelling option to consider.

Nothing Ear (a)Nothing Ear (a)
Nothing Ear (a)
Stylish design • ANC • LDAC
MSRP: $99.99
Nothing delivers feature-packed earbuds that don't break the bank.
The Nothing Ear (a) delivers most of the features you expect from Nothing earbuds but at a more affordable price. Plus, they come in yellow!

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In the lows, the Nothing Ear (a) boosts sub-bass frequencies more than our ideal. In the mids, the earbuds under-emphasize frequencies from 200-500Hz. There is also a significant drop-off in the highs above 8kHz. You can make some adjustments using the 3-band equalizer in the Nothing X app to mitigate this, though not perfectly.

Should you buy the EarFun Free Pro 3?

The EarFun Free Pro 3 sitting atop a wooden table.
Christian Thomas / SoundGuys
The inexpensive yet dependable EarFun Free Pro 3 are a good buy for most.

The EarFun Free Pro 3 earbuds should be on budget-conscious consumers’ radar. They offer a compelling combination of features for under $80. They excel in delivering quality sound, a variety of ear tip options, and a user-friendly app, all housed within a compact case that supports wireless charging. Despite their affordable price point, these earbuds include modern conveniences such as Bluetooth 5.3, Multipoint connectivity, aptX Adaptive, and Snapdragon Sound.

However, they are not without their flaws; the EarFun Free Pro 3 suffers from weak Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) capabilities and a transparency mode that doesn’t quite meet expectations. Additionally, their battery life, at just under 5 hours, falls short when compared to other options in the market, which might be a significant drawback for power users or frequent travelers.

The inclusion of five pairs of silicone ear tips, three sizes of ear fins, and memory foam ear tips in the package enhances the user experience by offering better acoustic isolation and fit customization. The EarFun app further enriches this experience by allowing users to tailor the earbuds’ controls, ANC settings, and sound profile to their liking. While not perfect, the EarFun Free Pro 3 earbuds offer a strong value proposition for those seeking quality wireless earbuds under $100, making them a solid choice for everyday use and casual listening.

EarFun Free Pro 3EarFun Free Pro 3
SG recommended
EarFun Free Pro 3
Hi-Fi sound • Strong ANC • Clear calls
MSRP: $79.99

Should you buy the Anker Soundcore Space A40?

The Anker Soundcore Space A40's case open with the earbuds inside, resting on a person's hand.
Sam Smart / SoundGuys
The Anker Soundcore Space A40 is a great purchase if you’re looking for earbuds around $100.

Anyone on a budget looking for noise canceling earbuds will appreciate the Soundcore Space A40. Commuters can block out the world on the bus or train, and athletes can stay aware of their surroundings with this pair of IPX4 water-resistant earbuds.

The baseline frequency response is enjoyable, and the many EQ presets to choose from, plus the ability to customize your sound profile, make it good for pretty much anyone. The noise canceling is quite good, and the many ear tips to choose from ensure a good fit for the noise canceling and isolation to do its job. Bluetooth multipoint and LDAC support elevate the earbuds even more.

Anker Soundcore Space A40Anker Soundcore Space A40
SG recommended
Anker Soundcore Space A40
Solid battery life • Bluetooth multipoint • ANC
MSRP: $99.99
Effective ANC and lot of EQ customization options
The Anker Soundcore Space A40 true wireless earbuds have great sound and noise canceling. They support Bluetooth multipoint and LDAC connection.

The Google Pixel Buds A-Series is a smart set of budget earphones

A hand holds the open case of the Google Pixel Buds A-Series in front of a beach.
Fantastic plastic, the Google Pixel Buds A-Series closes like a shell.

The budget-friendly Google Pixel Buds A-Series succeeds the famed Google Pixel Buds (2020), and the A-Series has almost all the same specs as its pricier sibling, including an IPX4 rating, a Bass Boost feature, and Google Assistant integration. Few wireless earbuds support hands-free Google Assistant access, let alone the best wireless earbuds under $100.

Upon its release, the Google Pixel Buds A-Series had some volume quirks (it was far too quiet), but Google has since released firmware 233 to bring the output up to an acceptable level. Listeners who enjoy spoken word content will appreciate the Pixel Buds A-Series’ under-emphasized bass response, which yields much clearer vocal reproduction. If you’re exercising or enjoy more of a bass-heavy sound, then take a minute to enable the Bass Boost response in the Pixel Buds app (Android only).

Ultimately, this is a really solid set of earbuds with plenty of advanced software and hardware to keep up with newer releases. If you want additional noise canceling and Google Translate, you’ll have to pony up for the flagship Google Pixel Buds Pro, but if you can do without, these are great buds for the price.

Google Pixel Buds A-SeriesGoogle Pixel Buds A-Series
Google Pixel Buds A-Series
Terrific Android integration • Low price • Multiple fun colors
MSRP: $99.00
The core features of the Pixel Buds Pro at a lower price
If you like the Pixel Buds line but think they are too pricey, the Pixel Buds A-Series should be on your radar. They have the core features you need at a price you'll love.

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While the Pixel Buds A-Series lacks noise canceling, it uses Google’s Adaptive Sound, which essentially adjusts the volume based on background noise. This is a fine feature, but it can wreck the dynamics of a song. The earbuds have pressure relief vents that should mitigate any uncomfortable suction-like feeling you get with other earphones.

The Pixel Buds A-Series’s microphone is quite good, but its quality decreases as background noise is introduced. Take a listen to our sample below.

Google Pixel Buds A-Series microphone demo (Non-standardized):

How does the microphone sound to you?

7420 votes

The Sony WF-C500 can go anywhere

The Sony WF-C500 charging case sitting on a table with the earphones resting next to it outside of the case.
The Sony WF-C500 sounds good and doesn’t add much bulk as you go about your daily activities.

Although the Sony WF-C500 isn’t a particularly notable pair of earbuds, they have an IPX4 rating and will get the job done at just about every twist and turn.

While the WF-C500 lacks noise canceling, it has good enough isolation to rival other noise canceling earbuds. The default frequency response is very good and should please most listeners. Still, if you like to tweak things to absolute perfection, the Sony Headphones Connect app (iOS and Android) has plenty to offer. Here, you can use its five-band equalizer to adjust the sound and choose to prioritize sound quality or connection stability. For iPhones, you get the necessary AAC codec to get the best audio you can get with your Apple device. Android owners will make do with SBC or AAC only.

This is the only headset listed to support 3D audio. With the WF-C500 set up through the Sony app, you can take advantage of Sony 360 Reality Audio. However, access to 360 Reality Audio content is limited to certain services like Tidal, Deezer, and Amazon Music.

Sony WF-C500Sony WF-C500
Sony WF-C500
Small and lightweight • Comfortable ear tips • Price
MSRP: $99.00
Comfortable everyday earbuds for exercising and commuting.
The Sony WF-C500 makes for a comfortable commuting and workout companion. Noise isolation helps keep the background noise to a minimum while the lightweight design is easily worn all day long.
A chart depicts the Sony WF-C500 (cyan) frequency response relative to the SoundGuys Consumer Curve V2.0 (pink), revealing the Sony earbuds' generally pleasing sound with slightly amplified upper-midrange notes.
The WF-C500 (cyan) generally follows our house curve (pink) very closely, though the treble is a bit under-emphasized.

The WF-C500 microphone is all right in ideal conditions but really lags behind the competition when it comes to sub-optimal environments.

Sony WF-C500 microphone demo (Ideal):

Sony WF-C500 microphone demo (Office):

How does the microphone sound to you?

8065 votes
The Sony WF-C700N shown in the case with the lid open and the ear tips on a wood surface.

While the Sony WF-C700N is supposed to be a step up from the WF-C500, we recommend you save your dollars and get the latter instead. If you like all the other features of the WF-C700N, then the WF-C500 ticks most of the same boxes from size to the Sony Headphones Connect app. Still, these do come with some of the same shortcomings, like the shape, but the price ($98 at Amazon) is kinder.

The best wireless earbuds under $100: Notable mentions

A close up photo shows the Nothing Ear stick sitting on a Yamaha CS01.
Jasper Lastoria / SoundGuys
The Nothing Ear (stick) is an Android-friendly take on the classic Apple AirPods.

This is a crowded price bracket, so be sure to take a gander through our notable mentions. If you don’t see all your desired features, maybe consider upping your price threshold.

  • Amazon Echo Buds (2nd Gen): This sometimes costs a bit more than $100, disqualifying it as a top contender, but it’s a great pair of entry-level smart earbuds that retails for much less than the Apple AirPods Pro. You get hands-free access to Alexa, which is helpful for smart home enthusiasts. Noise canceling is good and rivals more expensive competitors. When it’s in stock, you can get it for $119 at Amazon.
  • Anker Soundcore Life A1: Anker’s IPX7 earbuds cost just $49 at Amazon, and feature stabilizing ear wings that keep the buds in place no matter how you move. The boosted bass response may be a bit much for most listeners, but you can amend this from your media player’s EQ module.
  • Audio-Technica ATH-SQ1TW: For just $43 at Amazon, Audio-Technica’s earbuds provide great sound quality and above-average isolation. You don’t get any app support, though; the earbuds only stream audio over the SBC Bluetooth codec.
  • Beats Studio Buds ($99 at Amazon): While the ANC won’t beat the likes of the latest Beats Studio Buds Plus, you still get an effortless IPX4-rated pair of buds with 4 hours and 24 minutes of battery life to a single charge.
  • Jabra Elite 3: Although it lacks ANC altogether, the Jabra Elite 3 is a straightforward set of earbuds at a great price ($59 at Amazon). Its aptX codec supplies great audio, and its default tuning is pretty consumer-friendly.
  • Jabra Elite 4 Active: Not to be confused with the Jabra Elite 4, this one has a greater IP57 rating with less impressive noise canceling. However, it’s still a great set for $89.99 at Jabra.
  • JBL Tune Buds ($69.95 at Amazon): If you can get a good fit with the JBL Tune Buds, you will enjoy using them. They are packed full of features and have a sound quality that most people like.
  • JLab Epic Air Sport ANC: Okay, this set of earphones is an epically good deal and sells for $89 at Amazon. You get some premium features like top-notch ANC, an ear hook design, and a relatively consumer-friendly sound. The touch controls aren’t great, and neither is the mic quality, but you’ll love these buds if you can overlook those things.
  • JLab GO Air POP: These extremely budget-friendly earbuds sound great, with over 11 hours of battery life and an IPX4 rating. Its touch controls lack some refinement, and the mic is imperfect, but it’s so cheap ($24 at Amazon).
  • Nothing Ear 1: These buds feel premium for $99 at Amazon with good sound, a bit of ANC, and a stylish and lightweight design.
  • Nothing Ear (stick): For the person who desires a pair of unsealed earbuds akin to AirPods, the Ear (stick) is a slick-looking option at a low price ($64 at Amazon) compared to AirPods. The app isn’t half bad, either.
  • OnePlus Buds Z: If you like the design of the original Apple AirPods but want something that seals your ears, you should check out these budget buds for on the product’s website. They have an IPX4 rating, quick charging, AAC codec support, and good mic quality.
  • OnePlus Buds Z2: This set of earbuds merits an IP55 rating, and you can use either Bud in mono mode. When you buy the Buds Z2, you get access to Bluetooth 5.2, which opens the door for LE Audio support. These Buds Z2 has good noise canceling, especially for the price of $99 at Amazon, but it limits you to SBC and AAC streaming.
  • Sennheiser CX ($79.95 at Sennheiser): Since its drop in price, it has become a truly excellent option for its sound quality and feature set. However, you can get the ANC-capable Sennheiser CX Plus True Wireless for only a little bit more ($89 at Amazon)
  • Skullcandy Dime 2: For well within budget ($24 at Amazon), the Dime 2 fits nicely, has an IPX4 rating, and the mics are better than you’d expect. The downside is the battery life is pretty short.
  • Skullcandy Mod XT: If you can get past the stiff buttons on the buds, the combination of the price of $48 at Amazon, IP55 rating, Bluetooth multipoint, and consumer-friendly frequency response makes this set stiff competition.
  • Skullcandy Push Active: The Push Active earbuds have an IP55 dust and water-resistant rating, making them a great option for athletes. You can access your smart assistant hands-free due to Skull-iQ, making it a smart and strong pick for $69 at Amazon.
  • TCL MOVEAUDIO S600: If you want the AirPods look and feel, you’ll enjoy the premium features at an affordable price ($99 at Amazon) like a bit of ANC, an IP54 rating, and wireless charging.
  • Technics EAH-AZ40: Frequently found on discount ($117 at Amazon) the EAH-AZ40 is a comfortable, straightforward set of buds. Its app works on iOS and Android and includes a helpful equalizer. The mic handles external noise pretty well for the price, too.
  • TOZO NC2: For some surprisingly effective noise canceling for an affordable price ($39 at Amazon), the NC2 isn’t perfect, but it’s better than you’d expect, despite a sort of useless manual, it connects to your phone faster than most flagships can muster.
  • TOZO T6: As a straightforward set of earbuds, this budget set has some quirks, like maxing out the volume when you initially connect. If you can look past such an oversight, it’s not bad for only $26 at Amazon.
  • 1MORE ColorBuds 2: The 1MORE ColorBuds 2 comes in various fun colorways to express your style through your headset. The earphones are durable, too, as denoted by the IPX5 rating. Find a pair for $99 at Amazon.

What you should know about cheap wireless earbuds

When you buy cheap earbuds, even the best wireless earbuds under $100, you’re sacrificing style, build quality, and extra features like noise canceling. Just because you’re saving money on your affordable wireless buds doesn’t mean you’re sacrificing basic Bluetooth performance though. You can read our in-depth buyer’s guide or skim the important stuff below.

How long do wireless earbuds last?

A picture of the Jabra Elite Sport Wireless, which used to be some of the best true wireless earbuds under $100, with one earbud in the case and another outside of it on a stack of magazines.
The Jabra Elite Sport Wireless used to be among the best wireless earbuds under $100 but are now difficult to find in stock.

When true wireless earbuds like these were first released, you were lucky to get four hours of playback from a single charge. Now, we have earbuds exceeding 10 hours, setting a new standard for the technology. While shelling out more than $100 on wireless earbuds is worth it for many, it’s unnecessary if you want a basic, reliable pair of everyday earbuds. Companies like Jabra and Sony are cornering the cheap wireless market with good quality products for significantly less than the competition.

The battery life of Bluetooth earbuds is already improving! For instance, the Beats Powerbeats Pro exceeds 10 hours of playback on a single charge. Generally speaking, the included charging cases make up for an across-the-board poor standalone battery life. Also, pay attention to specifications regarding fast charging, as some earbuds can top up your listening time by charging for 10 or 15 minutes.

If you’re on an international flight, you may want to look at over-ear headphones instead. Whether you’re getting a pair of the best wireless earbuds under $100 or the best earbuds you can find, the battery cells will deplete over time, forcing you to reach out to the company for repairs or to buy a new set.

What is a Bluetooth codec?

Typically, we advise listeners to keep an eye out for high-quality Bluetooth codecs. If you’re not too familiar with how codecs work, fear not. They dictate how data is transferred from a source (phone) to a receiver (headphones). Ideally, Bluetooth transfer rates wouldn’t have to make compromises between efficiency and quality, but bandwidth remains limited. Companies are always looking for inventive workarounds: Bluetooth SIG teamed up with Fraunhofer to produce LE Audio and the new LC3 codec, which will greatly improve wireless streaming standards and aid the hard-of-hearing community.

iPhone users should get earbuds with AAC support, while Android users should invest in aptX-supported buds.

If you’re an iPhone user, make sure to get earbuds with AAC support. On the other hand, Android users should get something with aptX support. While Android devices support AAC streaming, its performance is inconsistent.

What is noise cancelation, and how should earbuds fit?

An angled, aerial photo of the Massdrop x Noble Kaiser 10 Universal Pelican carrying case open to reveal all included ear tips, an ear tip cleaner, and drawstring carrying pouch; you'd be hard-pressed to find this many accessories with any of the best true wireless earbuds under $100.
Taking a few minutes to find a pair of ear tips that fit can vastly improve audio quality, specifically bass reproduction.

None of the best wireless earbuds under $100 will supply a wide range of ear tips or outperform something like Sony WF-1000XM4 or Shure AONIC Free, but improving isolation is an easy way to improve sound quality. Take a few minutes to figure out which included ear tips are best for you. Ear tips that fit well will seal to your ear canals and stay in place as you jostle your head around. Effective isolation is the oldest form of noise canceling, and it blocks external noise from reaching your ears.

Some earbuds come with fit tests in the app, but this is uncommon at this price. If you can’t get the provided tips to work, invest in a pair of third-party ear tips. Doing so could also prevent irrevocable hearing loss.

The noise canceling and isolation chart for the Anker Soundcore Space A40, showing great noise canceling in the low end.
The Anker Soundcore Space A40 cancels out noise quite well, however, not uniformly.

Increasingly, earbuds under $100 have also been released with active noise cancelation, proving you don’t need to break the piggybank to access the feature these days. However, not all ANC is equal, so we test each pair of earbuds. ANC works best on low and midrange-frequency noises, while isolation is most effective with high-pitched noises.

How should wireless earbuds sound?

The frequency response chart for the TOZO T6, showing a bass boost. Other than that, the TOZO T6 comes close to our target curve.
The TOZO T6 frequency response looks pretty close to our ideal, with some deviations in the lows and highs.

Wireless earbuds are typically aimed toward your average consumer, so the frequency response will reflect that with amplified bass and treble notes relative to the mids. Generally speaking, this is how we created the SoundGuys house curve, which we use to score how a headset sounds. This curve is not a universal truth for what sounds good, but it is what most people will find pleasant.

If your headset manufacturer also has a mobile app, you can probably use that to EQ the sound profile. Not all earbuds, especially those under $100, come with a companion app though. If that’s the case, you may want to check your streaming service to see if it has an EQ module (like Spotify) or download a third-party EQ app.

Athletes need IP-certified earbuds

IP, or Ingress Protection, ratings denote how dust- or water-resistant a product is. Our deep dive into IP ratings is a great resource, but if you don’t have time, the higher the number, the more resistant a product is to dust or water.

Why you should trust SoundGuys

A person wears the Shokz OpenMove bone conduction headphones in blue while they sit outside.
Lily Katz / SoundGuys
Our staff tests gear, so you don’t have to make a guess.

We at SoundGuys pride ourselves on our ability to provide readers with a focused understanding of the subject of consumer audio using objective measurements. We adhere to a draconian ethics policy and don’t allow sponsored content on our site in an age where that’s more and more commonplace. Our income depends almost exclusively on people being happy with the products they buy after researching them.

Frequently asked questions about wireless earbuds under $100

Yes, cheap earbuds are not necessarily bad, and for most people, spending around $100 will generally merit sufficient sound quality and even features like noise cancelation.

We have a whole list of the best AirPods alternatives, but some cheaper options include the Nothign Ear (2) or the Soundcore Liberty 4 NC, which both have good sound quality.

Not all earbuds work optimally with iPhones.iPhone users should get earbuds with AAC codec support, like the Sony WF-C500. If you are considering earbuds that support higher quality codecs such as aptX, aptX HD, or LDAC, you are completely out of luck with Apple.

For those who prioritize their workouts and need earbuds that can keep up, the Jabra Elite 4 is the top pick. Designed with athletes in mind, they ensure a secure fit and won’t budge, even during the most vigorous exercises.

If you’re looking for an immersive music experience without spending a fortune, the Soundcore Liberty 4 NC is a standout option. Its impressive sound quality and comfortable fit make it a top pick for those who prioritize audio fidelity.

Currently, we quite like the Sony WF-C500, which is on our best list for its good looks, solid functionality, feature-full app, and 3D audio.

The way songs stream over Spotify sound won’t depend on your earbuds specifically. However, better-quality earbuds will make any streaming service’s music sound better. As for the iPhone, you’ll want to look for a pair of earbuds that support the AAC codec. This codec works well with iPhones to efficiently transfer data from the source device to the earbuds to maintain the quality of your music very well.

Yes, you can always charge the case, even if the earbuds are not in the case.

Battery life is important besides the obvious reasons that charging is annoying or getting caught with a dead battery at an inopportune moment isn’t fun. The longer your battery life to a single charge, the longer your earbuds can potentially last you overall because there’s a finite number of charge cycles before battery degradation occurs. Seeing as replacing your batteries is either very difficult or, most often, not really possible, a longer battery equals a longer-lasting set of buds.

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