Bluetooth is the transferring of data over a wireless connection. It was at first only used for connecting office devices like printers and keyboards, but evolved into something much bigger and better. This is because of the versatility Bluetooth profiles offer.
These days one of the biggest uses of Bluetooth are in wireless headphones. And now, more and more devices are designed without a 3.5 mm audio jack. Whether it’s to cut costs or just a design choice, the fact of the matter is, there is no better time to invest in a proper Bluetooth headphone than now.
So, let’s go through the very best currently available and find the perfect one for you.
But before that, we’ll start with our…
Best AptX Bluetooth Headphones Comparison Table
|Product||Supported Codecs||Battery Life||Noise Cancelling||Rating|
SBC, AptX and AAC.
31 hours with 7-hour charge time over micro-USB.
|(4.6 / 5)|
SBC, AptX, AptX HD, AAC and LDAC.
30 hours with 2-hour charge time over USB-C.
|(5 / 5)|
Grado GW100 Headphones
SBC, AptX and AAC.
15 hours with 2 hours charge time over micro-USB.
|(4.2 / 5)|
SBC, AptX, AptX HD, and AAC.
12 hours with 3 hours of charge time over USB-C.
|(4.2 / 5)|
The Nuraphone Headphones
SBC, Aptx, AptX HD, and AAC.
20 hours with 5 hours of charge time with USB-C.
|(4 / 5)|
SBC, AptX, AptX HD, and AAC.
30 hours with 2 hours charge time with USB-C
|(4.2 / 5)|
Top 6 Best AptX Bluetooth Headphones To Buy 2021 Reviews
1 Audio-Technica ATH-M50xBT Headphones
Audio-Technica have been making stellar sounding headphones for decades. Any and every audiophile knows Audio-Technica and would not hesitate recommending a pair to a friend.
The ATH-M50xBT is pretty much just an ATH-M50x but wireless. If you were a fan of the previous generation, then this headphone is right up your alley.
The design doesn’t change anything other than being able to fold up this pair for easy storage. However, the earpads are a little shallow, so if you have big ears, these might be a little uncomfortable. If you have normal sized ears, the little bit of depth lost inside the earpad isn’t really noticeable.
Other than the headphones, you’ll find a 3.5 mm audio jack cable, a micro-USB charger, and carrying pouch in the box.
The biggest problem here is the micro-USB cable that prevents any form of fast charging and also means you’ll have to drag a micro-USB cable around with you. You do get 31 hours on a full charge. That’s above a lot of its competition, but with a 7-hour charge time, it loses some credence.
The headphones sound great, albeit tuned more towards a consumer-friendly sound. This means the low bass frequencies are ever so slightly boosted with some reduction around the 4KHz frequency. This gives the bass and kick drum a little extra oomph whilst getting ahead of your ear’s natural timbre.
The headphones provide some isolation, but they are not noise cancelling. This means the low frequency hums inside a bus or airplane will be heard. If this is an issue for you, you should look for active noise canceling headphones.
It connects using Bluetooth’s latest version 5 and has aptX and AAC support.
- Great sound.
- Great battery life.
- Micro-USB charging.
- No active noise cancelling.
No more info? If so, check out our in-depth review of the Audio Technica ATH M50xBT.
2 Sony WH-1000XM3 Noise Cancelling Headphones
The Sony WH-1000XM3 is considered the king of noise cancelling headphones and for good reason. It comes with a sleek futuristic design and all the bells and whistles you’d expect from a premium pair of headphones.
The headphone is coated in a silky feeling matte black finished with comfortable earpads. The ear cups will fit all sizes of ears comfortably, and the soft cushioned headband provides comfort for hours on end. However, the headphones don’t fold up like most headphones, with the earcups themselves folding instead of the headband. The hard case is a welcome addition and will keep your headphones safe and clean.
The biggest addition Sony has made with their headphones, is their very own audio codec called LDAC. These headphones support standard SBC and aptX too, but LDAC is the real reason to buy these headphones.
AptX is already a refined and more efficient version of audio compression for Bluetooth streaming, but LDAC takes it to a new level. It is able to stream uncompressed high-fidelity audio at a very low latency. This means you get high-quality music uncompromised by a Bluetooth connection.
The sound on the headphones are more balanced than some of its competitors. If you prefer a more bass-heavy sound, there are other options, but these provide a clear and tight sound. If you’d like a wired connection, these offer it, and you can even turn on the noise cancelling with a wired connection.
The Sony WH-1000XM3 also boasts class-leading active noise cancelling. Even the roaring sound of an airplane engine isn’t enough to penetrate the headphones.
The Sony connects using Bluetooth 4.1 and supports connection to only one device at a time, which is one of its drawbacks.
The battery lasts 30 hours on a full charge and supports fast charging through USB-C. It charges fully in just under two hours.
- Sony’s LDAC audio codec is the best of the bunch.
- Great balanced sound.
- Fast charging and long battery life.
- Only one device can be connected at a time.
Want to find our even more? Well, simply take a look at our comprehensive Sony WH 1000XM3 review.
3 Grado GW100 Headphones
Brooklyn-based audio company Grado have been turning audiophiles’ heads for years with great sounding open-back headphones.
The Gw100 are made of plastic, which isn’t great considering the premium price tag. However, the plastic does make the headphones lighter than a lot of its competition, but makes it feel cheap in comparison.
The headphones themselves feel like they are targeting a very niche set of consumers. Open-back headphones provide great sound and spatial awareness by letting some of the environmental sounds in, and blasting some of the audio you’re listening out. In turn, it doesn’t really suit the average consumer.
They aren’t ideal for people commuting or listening to music at work, which is the main purpose of most Bluetooth headsets. And it might be better buying a much cheaper pair of wired open-back Grado’s than purchasing the Bluetooth pair.
But, if you simply can’t live without your pair of open-back headphones and feel the need to go wireless, this is the pair for you.
They fit comfy and won’t be a problem for any sized ears. The headband is a little large, and people with smaller heads might feel that they sit a little loose.
The Grado’s provide a great balanced sound aching more to the original mix than the overblown bass sound you find in a lot of consumer-friendly headphones these days.
There is some noise isolation, but it isn’t great considering the open-back design. You’ll hear a lot of the environmental noise around you. It also blasts music out, which means everybody around you can hear your fantastic or maybe horrible taste in music?
The headphones come with a Bluetooth 4.2 connection, and the latency is very low. However, the battery only lasts 15 hours, much less than its competition. They charge up in two hours with micro-USB charging.
- Open-back design.
- Open-back design.
- Noise isolation isn’t great.
- Micro-USB charging.
4 Bowers and Wilkins PX Wireless Headphones
Bowers and Wilkins are renowned for exceptionally well-crafted headphones with premium materials and superb comfort. The PX wireless headphones are no different.
The PX wireless headphones curb the leather and chrome for a 21st century design with a matte-black finish and vinyl covered earpads and headband. It feels strong and durable and looks, as the price suggests, very premium.
The earpads are quite thin compared to its competitors and helps control heat buildup. The headphones are quite heavy and clamp down pretty hard. This could cause some discomfort for people with larger heads; if that’s not you, you’ll be alright.
For a great looking pair of headphones, these sure do not sound the part.
The active noise cancelling does well in masking the low hum of the bus, but doesn’t block out any chatter from the people in the local coffee shop.
Unfortunately, the headphones lack a bit of definition and start sounding a little muddy when a lot of instruments are played together. The bass is alright and doesn’t blow you away. The mid-frequencies sound too blown out whilst the high frequencies lack the finesse or punch you’d expect in premium headphones.
It’s a shame that the design took first priority over the sound. And you’ll be able to find much better alternatives at a lower price.
The battery lasts about 12 hours, less than almost all of its direct competitors, and especially awful at its price. It takes about three hours to fully charge them with a USB-C charger.
- USB-C charging.
- Great looking and sturdy design.
- Below average sound.
- Low battery life.
For more information, please check out our comprehensive Bowers and Wilkins PX5 review.
5 The Nuraphone Headphones
Nuraphone is trying to introduce a whole new concept into the headphones market called personal sound. The headphones’ design is also cutting edge with its in- and over ear design. There are earcups that cover your ear, and earbuds that then go into your ear, and it works surprisingly well.
At first glance, you might be tempted to laugh the design off and just wander on, but you’d be making a great mistake.
The earcups fit nicely over your ear and provide active noise cancelling. This means the low hum of a bus or airplane is all but gone, whilst the earbuds block off the rest of the noises you might hear. This makes for an uninterrupted listening experience like no other.
The dual setup also allows for two acoustic drivers, one in the earcup and one in the earbud for a great sounding setup.
The personalized sound profiles work with your ears frequency responses because everyone does not hear the same range of frequencies or might be more susceptible to some frequencies.
It makes for a nice listening experience, but comes off more like a glorified EQ than an actual listening profile, since that would need more than just the frequencies you are susceptible to like your ear shape and depth and your age.
These headphones come at a very premium price, with some cool added features that unfortunately never really make the price worth it.
- Great design.
- Great active noise cancelling.
- Sound profile technology is underwhelming.
6 Beyerdynamic Aventho Wireless Headphones
Beyerdynamic is a German audio manufacturing company, and like any other German-made product, you can expect excellent build quality paired with classic and functional designs.
The build quality on the Aventho is top-notch with a beautiful fingerprint-proof matte finish, and the metal headband is durable with little flex. However, it does tend to snag some stray hairs every now and then – ouch!
The vinyl covered earpads are comfy and don’t heat up too much. The headphones clamp a little too tight and cause some discomfort after about an hour’s worth of listening.
They provide beautiful, clear mid-range frequencies whilst keeping the bass tight and the highs shining bright. The dynamic drivers are also able to differentiate between different low frequencies, making them great for any audiophile looking to experience absolute full immersion.
You can clearly hear the difference between the rumbling bass and punchy kick drums as each stand on its own in the mix.
The earcups do a good job at some noise isolation, but there is no active noise cancelling present.
The Aventho provides just over 30 hours of playback time, on par with the Sony WH-100XM3. The fast charging USB-C gets them charged fully in around two hours.
- Great battery life.
- USB-C charging.
- Great low-end differentiation.
- Great build quality.
- No noise cancelling.
Best AptX Bluetooth Headphones Buyers Guide
What is AptX?
When shopping for headphones, especially at a premium price, it is important to buy headphones that are future proof. This is where atpX comes in.
AptX is an audio codec specific to wireless Bluetooth connections. It allows for a much lower latency between the aptX device and your pair of headphones. This fixes a problem that a lot of cheap wireless headphones suffer from.
Efficiency is The Key
When you stream a movie on a site like Netflix, what happens is the audio lags behind the picture. This is due to high latency, or the time it takes for the audio to be compressed and encoded, sent to the headphones and relayed to your ears. AptX does all of this much more efficiently than standard SBC connections.
SBC, which is the standard audio compression codec, is able to compress and stream music at around 320kbps. You’d recognize that number, it’s the standard rate at which a lot of MP3’s stream these days. If you’re an average consumer that just listens to music casually, you might not even notice a difference between the 320kbps and higher codecs like FLAC.
More Data = a Better Sound
AptX can compress and stream audio up to 420kbps, which means some extra data/detail gets left in. When a song is compressed, certain frequencies are cut from the mix. However, by having more data, it means more of the frequency information remains in the song, making it sound more detailed and clearer.
AptX can only be found on Qualcomm chipsets, which means it is not on any IOS devices. Apple provides their own solution to this with their AAC codec. It’s the same as Aptx, but for Apple devices.
With Sony’s very own LDAC, you get uncompressed streams that can go up to 990kbps and puts Sony at the forefront of wireless audio streaming and is the reason why Sony is our pick for the best AptX headphones. It’s important to make sure that your device supports LDAC though, it can be found on most Flagship phones and even some cheaper phones like Xiaomi’s Redmi note 7.
Are You a Fan of Bluetooth?
If so, you’ll love our reviews of the Best Waterproof Bluetooth Headphones, the Best Solar Powered Bluetooth Speakers, the Best Wireless Bluetooth Headphones, the Best Bluetooth Headphones under 100 Dollars, and the Best Bluetooth Speakers with Radio currently available.
The Best Bluetooth Headphone Adaptors may also be of interest if you have some old technology that you want to bring up to date.
So, What Are The Best AptX Bluetooth Headphones?
Well, it wasn’t that difficult a choice, and the…Sony WH-1000XM3
…is the best aptX Bluetooth headphone on the market. With a price under $300 and Sony’s very own LDAC codec, which is superior to aptX, the Sony’s outperform all of its competitors.
They have some of the best battery life and come equipped with USB-C fast charging. And on top of all that, the Sony app is easy to navigate, and the noise cancelling is the best in class. They are completely future proof and will last the longest of the headsets, feature wise.