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Headphones buying guide

Here are the 5 most important things to consider when buying new headphones.

There’s loads of choice when it comes to the style, quality and price of headphones. This handy guide will help you to decide which features to look for in terms of sound quality, durability and comfort.

Earbuds or overheads?

This decision between earbuds and overheads often comes down to what you find most comfortable. If you’re listening to music on-the-go, then in-ear headphones are handy thanks to their size, but overheads often offer better sound quality and noise-cancelling properties. However, many top-of-the-range in-ear headphones now offer both of these options, so you can enjoy high-quality music with headphones that fit in your pocket.

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Is it worth going wireless?

There’s nothing worse than getting your phone out to change the song and clumsily pulling your headphones out of your ears. If you’re looking to solve this problem by going fully wireless, then there different levels of sound quality, connectivity ranges and battery life, so bear in mind what’s most important for you. Look out for headphones that come with a built-in microphone, so you can make phones calls wirelessly too.

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Noise-cancelling

Noisy planes and loud commutes will be a thing of the past with specially designed headphones that block out the world. You could go for an Active Noise Reduction feature, which uses an additional sound to reduce external noise, but sometimes soundproofing materials used to house the speakers are just as good at making sure your music isn’t distorted by your surroundings. Some headphones can even let in certain noises, such as important announcements, so you can still block out that screaming baby without missing your flight!

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Sports headphones

Wearing headphones that fall out when you start running is no fun, so make sure you invest in a pair that are designed with sport in mind. Most sports headphones are now wireless and sit in or on your ear, allowing you plenty of freedom of movement. Consider looking for sweat-resistant headphones if you plan on an intense workout!

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On-ear or over-ear?

If earbuds aren’t for you, then you’ll need to decide if you want headphones that sit on your ears or over them. Over-ear earphones are usually more comfortable if you listen to music all day, but on ear headphones can be smaller and look more stylish for when you’re out and about. If you prefer on-ear headphones, then look for extra cushioning or a looser fit, so you can listen for longer without any discomfort.

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