Live the Hands-Free Life With the Best Bluetooth Headsets
Sure, you’re hard at work in the garage, but that doesn’t mean you can’t chat on the phone or listen to your favorite jams.
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Bluetooth headsets have become the standard. They’re not only convenient, but they can also be necessary for those who need to keep their hands and eyes focused on a task. A Bluetooth headset can complement your work flow or lifestyle. There are a ton of options to consider, including in-ear headsets, on ear, and over ear. I searched extensively to bring you a list of the best Bluetooth headsets.
We’re talking here about headsets you can wear mainly while you’re getting work done or messing around in the garage. They’re not really for use in your vehicle, as in many states, it’s illegal to drive using a headset or earbuds. Some states allow their use if only one earpiece is working and it’s only being used for navigation or for hands-free calling. Make certain your state allows their use before you hit Buy It Now.
- 36-hour battery life
- Excellent sound quality
- EQ customization
- Active noise cancellation
Apple AirPod Pro
- Convenient size
- Rechargeable case
- iOS/Mac OS seamless integration
- Siri voice controls
- Might not fit great in all ears
- Works better with iPhone
- Audio quality
- Great mic quality
- Can be worn left or right
- Dedicated app isn’t great
In order to find the best Bluetooth headsets on the market, I scoured the internet with certain criteria in mind: comfort, sound quality, battery life, and features. Bluetooth headsets are generally worn for long periods of time, so these key points were crucial to my decision making. I read numerous reviews from professionals, as well as reviews from everyday people who have purchased the products listed. After gathering a beefy list of potential candidates, I eventually narrowed them down to these products.
If you’d like to learn more about our methodology, click this link for information.
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Best Bluetooth Headset Reviews & Recommendations
- Battery life: 36 hours
- Fit: On head, on ear
- Excellent sound quality
- Great clarity
- Fantastic battery life
- Microphone could be better
The Jabra Evolve2 is a fantastic choice for a Bluetooth headset. In many ways, it blows the competition out of the water. This headset doubles as a pair of headphones and does both jobs extremely well. It has fantastic sound quality, clarity, and its dedicated app even gives you the option of customizing the EQ. It has an intelligent active noise cancellation feature that adjusts based on ambient noise, and also features a listening mode to increase awareness of your surroundings. It has a flexible hide-away boom-arm microphone with built-in mute and auto-answer functions. Anyone using this headset for extended periods will be pleased as the headset is very comfortable and holds an amazing 36-hour battery life. Its downsides, according to reviews, are an average microphone and a high price.
- Battery life: 4.5 hours listening, 3.5 hours talking
- Fit: In ear
- Packed with features
- Seamless integration with Apple products
- Audio quality and features great
- Works better with Apple
Apple AirPods are the world's most popular Bluetooth headphones for a reason, and the AirPod Pros are no exception. They have a great sound, fit into your pocket, charge from a case, and work seamlessly with iPhone and other Apple products. They’re feature rich, with the standouts being active noise cancellation, automatic ear detection Transparency mode, Force Touch button controls, adaptive EQ and Siri integration. The microphone quality is excellent despite its size and distance from the mouth and can be easily used with one ear. These headphones can be used hands free. AirPod Pros get the job done well, whether being used as headphones or a headset.
A potential downside is the battery life. At 4.5 hours listening time, and 3.5 hours talking time, this could be an inconvenience for some. However, charging the AirPods in its dedicated case for five minutes will provide an extra hour of charge.
- Battery life: 24 hours
- Fit: On head. Over ear
- Great audio quality
- Mic quality is excellent
- Can be worn left or right via swivel
- Dedicated app is not great
- Voice commands are tied to app
The BlueParrott is our honorable mention, but it’s a solid Bluetooth headset. It’s versatile, able to be used on both ears via the swivel on the ear piece, has dedicated buttons, and features full voice controls. The device is lightweight, making it comfortable when used for extended periods of time. This is complemented by its 24-hour battery life. Both the mic and audio quality are great.
Its major downside includes the fact that its dedicated app is not very good. It’s difficult to navigate and set up. This is a shame because the voice controls are entirely connected to the app.
- Battery life: 7.8 hours
- Fit: In ear
- Good audio quality
- Charging cable isn’t great
Both capable and affordable, the Plantronics Voyager Legend is my pick for the best budget Bluetooth headset. For those on a budget or just looking for a backup headset, look no further than the Plantronics Voyager Legend. This small and lightweight Bluetooth headset is able to get the job done without breaking the bank. Equipped with a battery capable of 24 hours of talk time, and a microphone frequency range of 150-6800hz. This headset’s noise cancellation feature is able to block out 96 percent of ambient noise. It’s also designed to work with Google Assistant and Siri, making it a hands-free device after the initial setup process. This Bluetooth headset is a great option for those looking to save money or those who often lose their devices and need a backup just in case.
- Battery life: 20 hours, 40-day standby
- Fit: In ear
- Great audio and mic quality
- Built for job sites and rugged environments
- Not the most comfortable
Anyone using their Bluetooth headset for rugged activities or job sites will want to consider the Elgin Rumble Earplugs. Designed to take a beating, this headset is dust and waterproof, as well as OSHA compliant for hearing protection. This headset is in ear, with ear clips and Kevlar cables extending from them to ensure that they never fall while using them. Elgin designed this headset to be convenient for those on the go, providing it with a tiny, yet impressive battery lasting up to 20 hours. It has quick charge and is rated at 10 minutes of charge equaling 2.5 hours. Even more conveniently, it’s compatible with Siri, Google Assistant, and Alexa.
- Battery life: 7 hours (earbud battery), 38 hours (case)
- Fit: In ear
- Great audio and mic quality
- Automatic ear detection
- Touch and voice control
- No water or dust resistance
The Happy Plug Air 1 ANC is a Bluetooth headset for the style conscious user. It has a sleek, minimal and compact design dressed in various colors and patterns, with the earbuds matching the case. They come in exclusive finishes designed by some of the biggest companies in fashion. Not only do they look good, but they’re functional. The microphone quality is great and has ambient noise suppression to make your voice sound clear even in busy environments. They’re equipped with a 40-hour battery case, six-hour battery life, fast charging via USB-C and compatibility with iOS, Android, Windows, and MacOS. The automatic ear detection is great as well, and it enables the ultra useful auto-pause/play feature that many users can’t live without.
Our Verdict on Bluetooth Headsets
Although they can be similar, not all Bluetooth headsets are created equal. Some will undoubtedly suit your needs better than others.For those who value quality, versatility, and convenience, the Jabra Evolve2 is the best pick. For those on a budget and looking to get a quality headset at a great price, we recommend the Plantronics Voyager Legend.
What to Consider When Buying Bluetooth Headset
Types of Bluetooth Headsets
In-ear headsets come with earbud attachments in multiple sizes that sit on the inside of your ear. In-ear headsets are able to block out sound a bit better than on-ear headsets, regardless of the use of active noise cancellation.
On-ear headsets are exactly as described. They sit on the ear without fully covering them. They can be a bit less comfortable than over-ear or in-ear headsets, depending on the materials used or the weight of the device. Due to the design, sound is able to bleed through the device at higher volumes, so those seeking privacy in conversation or listening sessions will want to look elsewhere.
Over-ear headsets cover the entire ear using ear cups, creating a mini pocket for sound when worn. These are generally considered to be the most comfortable option, as they put little to no pressure on the ear. They’re also a great option for those seeking privacy, as sound is less likely to bleed from the pocket of the ear cups. Thanks to the design, sound quality can be better, as ambient noise will have less of an effect on the sound as it travels into your ear.
Best Bluetooth Headset Key Features
Many headsets and headphones come with a feature called active noise cancellation. This feature uses the headset’s built-in microphones and speakers to reduce surrounding background noise. It’s most commonly used with over-ear headphones, but with the advancement of technology, in-ear and over-ear headsets often carry this feature (although less effectively).
For those with an active career or lifestyle, water and dust resistance can be crucial. Most warranties do not cover water damage, so this feature should be a major consideration for anyone who will be wearing their Bluetooth headset on a job site, at the gym, or in the elements.
Bluetooth headsets vary widely in price. In the $50-$100 range, you’ll find most headsets are smaller, mono, ear-clip style. For $120 and up, you’ll start to find some products with versatility in design and functionality. These are often available in different styles such as in ear, on ear, and over ear. They also range anywhere from earbuds to headphones, so you can find a style that’s most comfortable for you.
You’ve got questions. The Drive has answers.
Q: What can a Bluetooth headset do?
A: Bluetooth headsets allow you to listen to music, talk on the phone, and actively cancel ambient noise, all while being completely wireless.
Q: How does Bluetooth work?
A: Bluetooth works by sending short range radio signals from one device to a receiving device. These radio bursts operate on a frequency band of 2.4GHz and 2.4835 GHz. These radio bursts connect two devices and send data between the two at an extremely fast rate.
Q: What is the max range of a Bluetooth headset?
A: The maximum range of a Bluetooth headset is about 30 feet, depending on any obstacles such as thick walls or metal objects interfering with the connection.