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Top 10 Best Noise Isolating Earbuds Recommended In 2020 Reviews

Noise isolating earbuds are all the craze at the moment as people are retreating into their own little worlds more every day. Whether you don’t want to be disturbed during your morning commute or shut out the daily hustle of the modern world, you need a good pair of noise isolating earbuds.

There are a lot of over-head headphones that fit this category too, but some people don’t find the over-ear design comfortable and thus need earbuds/earphones.

Therefore, we decided to review the very best Noise Isolating Earbuds currently available. So, let’s for through them and find the perfect pair for you…

best noise isolating earbuds

Best Noise Isolating Earbuds Comparison Table

ProductDesignSoundFeaturesRating
Design
Lightweight and comfortable. Loose fit, but stable.
Sound
Horrible sound staging and dated sound.

Decent bass, but some audio masking at high volumes.
Features
Wireless.

Active Noise Cancelling.

19 Hours of Battery life.

Micro-USB Charging.
5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)
Design
Designed with hearing protection in mind.
Sound
Great balanced sound.

Decent noise isolation.
Features
Wired headphones.
4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)
Design
Spring reinforced earbud with a thick cable.

Cable goes over ear first.
Sound
Needs time to break in. They sound better after multiple listens.
Features
Wired headphones.
4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)
Design
They provide a great seal and go around the ear first.
Sound
Monitoring earphones that sound great.
Features
Detachable cables.

Wired headphones

Great as a monitoring device.
4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)
Design
Certified hearing protection.
Sound
Don’t sound all that great. Designed with protection in mind.
Features
Hearing protection certification.
4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)
Design
Certified hearing protection.
Sound
Don’t sound all that great. Designed with protection in mind.
Features
Hearing protection certification.
4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)
Design
Wrap around ear first, then insert. Quite big, so can cause discomfort.
Sound
Amazing sounding headphones, if you can bear the design and comfort.
Features
Great as a monitoring device.

Wired headphones
4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)
Design
Feel a little cheap, classic earbud design.
Sound
Extra bass, excellent for casual listeners.
Features
Wired headphones
4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)
Design
Feel a little cheap, classic earbud design with some nice wooden accents.
Sound
Underwhelming sound.

Lacks some bass and clarity.
Features
Wired headphones
4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)
Design
Cheap feeling with an uninspired design.
Sound
Included ear tips sound horrible.

If you use custom ear tips, you can find some pleasure listening to these.
Features
Wired headphones
4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)

Top 10 Best Noise Isolating Earbuds To Buy 2020 Reviews

1 Bose QuietComfort 20 Earphones

The QuietComfort 20 is the predecessor of the current Bose QuietControl 30. And these earphones have a great looking and feeling design. They are lightweight and comfortable to wear for long periods of time, no matter what you’re doing. And provide a nice loose feeling fit, without ever feeling like falling out.

They are stable enough in ear for exercising, and the noise isolation is superb.

Superb isolation…

These earbuds were the first in Bose’s now extended range of active noise cancelling earphones. Even so, the technology here is almost class leading, only falling behind the Sony WF 1000XM3 earbuds.

The sound quality is where the earbuds start showing their age. The sound staging isn’t great at all, and stereo separation doesn’t sound that accurate. The isolation provides decent bass if you get an airtight seal. The higher frequencies take a bit of hit.

At higher volumes, you will experience some audio masking and subtle distortion. While the sound leaking is almost non-existent, and the microphone is average and struggles to separate voice from other sounds in noisy environments.

Fantastic battery life…

Battery life is great at 19 hours on a full charge. The battery takes just under two hours to charge to full capacity. Unfortunately, the charging method of micro-USB is very dated and slow by modern standards.

These earphones also aren’t wireless. If you’re not a fan of wires tangling everywhere, you should definitely avoid these.

And if you want to find out more about the latest version, check out our Bose QuietComfort 35 II review.

Bose QuietComfort 20 Earphones
Our rating:5 out of 5 stars (5 / 5)

Pros

  • Great active noise cancelling.
  • Great battery life.

Cons

  • Wired earphones.
  • Average sounding.
  • Price.

2 Etymotic Research HF3 Earphones

Etymotic started out making professional hearing protection monitors and eventually branched out into the headphone game. And their expertise in hearing protection and noise isolation is truly heard in the HF3 earphones.

Once you’ve messed around with the different sizes of ear tips and found the perfect fit that seals off your ear canal, which could take a while, you’re set to go. And boy do these earphones sound great!

A thing of the past…

Once the seal is formed, the noise isolation makes sure that cars honking and people shouting during your morning bus commute become a thing of the past.

The bass here sounds natural and not boosted at all. This provides tight and punchy bass frequencies that don’t overpower the rest of the mix. Vocals stand out nicely, and the sound staging gives all the instruments room to shine.

Ring, ring…

The added microphone sounds fine. And it’s good for taking the occasional call mid-commute or in noisy environments.

Note that these earphones are not wireless and require a 3.5 mm input, which is slowly being fazed out by phone manufacturers.

Etymotic Research HF3 Earphones
Our rating:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros

  • Great noise isolation.
  • Excellent range of sound.

Cons

  • Wired earphones.
  • Finding a good fit can take some time.

3 RHA MA750i Earphones

The RHA MA750i are well designed and built in-ear earphones. The build quality is excellent with a thick cable and spring reinforced plug end. The in-line remote is made of stainless and feels sturdy as well.

The design for the earbuds themselves has the cable going over the top of your ears first before you put them in your ear. Some might find this design uncomfortable. However, it does allow for some more stability when walking or running and felt comfortable for extended periods of time for us.

Great choice of ear tips…

There is great versatility with all the different ear tips provided – nine to be precise. And there are even memory foam and double-flanged tips included if you prefer those. There is also a clothing clip, and zip-up carrying pouch included.

The sound of the earphones took some time to come around. When we first listened to them, they sounded raspy and very muffled. Only after a week of listening to the earphones did we break them in. Therefore, what you’ll find after some time is a great sounding pair of earphones, so don’t judge them on that initial listen.

Crystal clear…

The frequencies are well rounded, and none overpower any other. However, the bass is thick and a bit on the louder side, which is great if that’s your preference. You’ll find the mid frequencies to be clear and left with enough space to shine through the mix.

The noise isolation is fine for everyday use. Not as great as the previous two devices and nowhere near active noise cancelling levels of isolation. The in-line microphone sounds on par with most devices at this price range. It’s fine for casual use, but business calls are still better on your mobile device itself.

This is another pair of wired earphones and should be noted if your mobile device does not have a 3.5 mm jack.

RHA MA750i Earphones
Our rating:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros

  • Great build quality.
  • Nice variety of ear tips.
  • Great sound.

Cons

  • Takes time to “break in” the earphones.
  • Wired earphones.

4 MEE audio M6 Pro Earphones

The MEE audio M6 pro earphones boast detachable cables and flexible earbuds that can bend to fit your ear comfortably. This means optimal comfort and ease of use for motorcyclists who want to wear earphones inside their helmet or people who don’t particularly enjoy wired earphones because of the lack of versatility.

The earphones come with a nice variety of ear tip sizes and double flange ear tips as well. You’ll also find a 6.3 mm stereo adapter and carrying case in the box. The included stereo adapter means you can connect them straight into a studio monitor, audio interface, or amp.

Nicely balanced…

The M6 pro boasts well balanced 10 mm driver that sounds crystal clear with well-rounded low frequencies that don’t overpower the rest of the frequency range.

These are monitoring earphones and are catered towards musicians. This is why they sound so well rounded in the low and high frequencies. The mid-range frequencies do take a backseat, and this is where a lot of the vocals sit within the mix. If you’re a bassist, keyboardist or guitarist, these earphones will be a perfect fit for you.

On and off stage…

Sound isolation is great once you find the perfect fit and superb for musicians on and off the stage.

They have an IPX-5 rating for some sweat resistance for when you’re rockin’ out on stage as well.

MEE audio M6 Pro Earphones
Our rating:4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Pros

  • Well balanced frequencies and sound.
  • Comfortable and flexible design.
  • Detachable earbuds.
  • Ipx-5 rating.

Cons

  • Wired earphones.

5 ISOtunes Pro Earplug Earphones

These are a wireless pair of earphones that come from Haven Technologies. The company specialize in producing earplug earphones that have been tested in labs to acquire a hearing protector rating. If that rating is important for you, this pair of earphones will be high on your list.

You’ll find that these earphones have a simple design with a sturdy cable and in-line volume module. There’s a good choice of ear tip sizes and triple flange ear tips for a more casual fit. It’s important to find a fit that seals off your ear canal completely. If it does not, the noise isolating won’t be great.

Great for shutting off the world…

The sound they produce is fine. There’s some nice punchy bass present; however, the higher-end frequencies lack some depth and brightness.

The noise isolation is good in noisy environments. If that’s your main use for these earphones, you won’t find better sounding earphones. They do a great job of blocking almost all noise from the outside whilst still retaining decent sound quality.

Long-lasting…

They connect using Bluetooth version 4.1, which will give you good range and low latency. The battery lasted us just over 10 hours at 50% volume. Considering the tight seal, you won’t be listening to them at higher volumes anyway.

The in-line microphone sounds fine for phone calls and will suit most daily situations. If you need to use it in noisy environments, you will find that a lot of noise gets picked up by the microphone.

ISOtunes Pro Earplug Earphones
Our rating:4.1 out of 5 stars (4.1 / 5)

Pros

  • Wireless Bluetooth version 4.1.
  • Great noise isolation.
  • Good variety of ear tips.
  • Excellent battery life.

Cons

  • Average sounding.
  • Getting a good fit can take time.

6 ISOtunes Xtra Bluetooth Earplug Earphones

A lot of workplaces require certified noise isolating earplugs. This can cause problems for people who love listening to music on the job when they can. However, the ISOtunes Xtra earplug headphones provide a solution to this very niche dilemma, because these earphones are ANSI-certified and OSHA standard compliant.

The earphones feel as comfortable as any sort of noise cancelling earplugs allow. Expect a tight fit that seals up your ear canals. There is some pressure coming from the tighter than usual fit, but in turn, it allows for exceptional noise isolation.

Simply fades away…

People on the bus fade away, the humming of a lawnmower or jackhammer seem distant and almost non-existent.

The sound quality provided is great for what you get. You won’t be buying these headphones for the sound quality first. There is a good amount of balance between the frequencies, and music is pleasant to listen to. Podcasts and audio-books sound great too. But, the fact is you’re buying these earphones for hearing protection first and audio quality second.

Sweat? No problem…

They come with 10 hours of playback time on a full charge and have an IP-45 rating.

ISOtunes Xtra Bluetooth Earplug Earphones
Our rating:4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Certified hearing protection.
  • IP-45 rating.
  • Great battery life.

Cons

  • Below average sound.
  • Can be uncomfortable for some.

7 Shure SE215 Earphones

Shure has a great reputation for making great sounding microphones and headphones, and this pair is no different. The Shure SE215 are a great mid-range set of earphones that offer decent sound quality and great noise isolation.

The design is different from earbuds. You wrap the cable around over your ear and then insert the earphones. The design covers all your ear and may cause a little discomfort for some people.

For stage or gym…

However, the design is great for musicians who move around a lot. The wrap around the ear provides extra stability. This can also be used for any sort of physical activity like jogging or lifting weights.

For everyone else, you’ll find decent comfort for extended periods of time with some discomfort if you wear them all day. The earphones are also detachable, and new cables can be bought to replace yours if they break.

Quality monitoring…

They work great as ear monitors as well for musicians when performing on stage. The noise isolation is superb with the right fit and blocks out most noise apart from some low hums.

The sound is catered to the more casual listener, with the sound leaning more towards the bass side. It’s not bad at all, but if you want earphones that are well balanced and sound like the original mix, look elsewhere.

Warm and fuzzy…

They provide a warm and fuzzy sound with some good clarity. You won’t ever find them sounding thin or tinny. There’s no wireless here, and you will need a 3.5 mm jack input on your device.

Shure SE215 Earphones
Our rating:4.3 out of 5 stars (4.3 / 5)

Pros

  • Warm consumer-friendly sound.
  • Decent comfort with great stability.
  • Detachable earphones.

Cons

  • The design isn’t for everyone.
  • Detachable earphones are great, but wireless is more convenient.

8 Sony MDR-XB50 AP Earphones

The XB series of earphones from Sony stand for eXtra Bass. This range of earphones are budget-friendly and targets the average music consumers who think more bass equals better sound.

The build quality is on the cheaper side considering the price range and consumer base Sony is making these for. And unfortunately, they look like the kind of earphones you buy at the 5-dollar store.

Lack of options…

There are only four sizes of ear tips available, which is common within this price for Sony earphones. It is unfortunate considering getting a seal is key to experiencing the bass in its full capacity.

So, if it is bass you want, the 12 mm drivers provide massive amounts of bass that ooze all over the mix and makes your head rattle. It’s rich and punchy with ample amplification. If you EQ these just right, you can expect some serious power from the little drivers.

Bass all the way…

Obviously, the rest of the mix gets overblown by the bass. But that’s what you want when you buy these earphones. No one is buying “extra bass” earphones and expecting a balanced mix.

The noise isolation average. The ear tips, if well fitted, block out enough noise for a pleasurable experience and more than enough for the bass to really shine. They also don’t leak much sound, great for public commuting or office use.

EDM lovers…

Considering these are some of the cheapest earphones on the list, they make a great case for being the best pick for the average consumer. If you want decent noise isolation and great punchy earphones to blast EDM or Trap, this should be your pick.

These are not wireless earphones and use a 3.5 mm jack, so make sure your device has one. However, the in-line microphone is almost unusable, and we wouldn’t even touch it with a 10-meter stick, so don’t buy these if call quality is on your list of priorities.

Sony MDR-XB50 AP Earphones
Our rating:4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)

Pros

  • Rich sounding, bass-heavy sound.
  • Price

Cons

  • Not wireless.
  • Unbalanced sound might not be for everyone.
  • Cheap design and feel.

9 Symphonized NRG 3.0 Wood Earbuds

The Symphonized NRG 3.0 Wood earphones are budget-friendly earphones with a somewhat premium look and feel. The wood finish gives the design a classy look, but the dated design defers some of that premium feeling that the wood brings. The cables are sturdy and rubberized.

There is a wide variety of ear tips sizes but no foam tips for a more comfy fit. The ear tips design is pretty much your standard earphone design with nothing special.

Different opinions…

This is either great news or bad news, depending on how you feel towards them. Some find the design comfortable, whilst we feel the design doesn’t allow enough comfort for longer periods of time.

The sound is average with the bass sounding underwhelming. The mid-range frequencies sound great and gives the vocal performances some extra nuance and clarity.

The high-end frequencies don’t sound too great, though. There’s a lot of noise present when things get loud like cymbals crashing. This makes the overall listening experience a bit lackluster and sometimes even painful.

However…

They do provide some decent noise isolation. When music is playing, you won’t hear much, except for some low hums or very loud shouting and honking.

There is no sound leakage whatsoever. If it’s because of the decent isolation or poor sound performance, we’re not sure.

Symphonized NRG 3.0 Wood Earbuds
Our rating:4.2 out of 5 stars (4.2 / 5)

Pros

  • Good noise isolation.
  • Premium feel.
  • Price.

Cons

  • Below-average sound quality.

10 Soundmagic E10 Earphones

The Soundmagic E10 earphones aim to provide a decent upgrade from your below-average earphones included with your mobile device at a budget-friendly price. And you’ll find a very common and uninspiring design suited at the price level.

But don’t let their looks fool you…

Provided you throw a decent foam ear tip on them, not included in the box, you might find yourself presently surprised.

With the given ear tips, we found the isolation lacking. Without a solid seal, you’ll have a lot of noise leaking. This results in the bass sounding thin and low in the mix. The rest of the sound also loses clarity, and the highs don’t shine as they should.

Much better…

When we replaced the provided ear tips with a reasonable pair of foam ear tips like Soundmagic’s very own memory foam ear tips, we found ourselves pleasantly surprised.

These budget earphones sounded much better. The bass was thick and punchy and made the music sound much warmer. The mid and high range was bright and clear, and no audio masking was present.

The sound profile fits the average music listener perfectly with the low and top-end boosted a bit, making them perfect for modern music. The company’s foam ear tips also provide far better noise isolation than the included ear tips, why they just don’t include them in the package, we have no idea?

Soundmagic E10 Earphones
Our rating:4.4 out of 5 stars (4.4 / 5)

Pros

  • Good sound.
  • Comfortable.
  • Good build quality.
  • Price

Cons

  • Included ear tips don’t do the earphones justice.

Also, Need Your Earbuds For More Than Just Noise Isolation?

If so, check out our reviews of the Best Wireless Earbuds for Small Ears, the Best Noise Cancelling Earbuds, the Most Durable Earbuds, the Best Sound Quality Earbuds, the Best Headphones and Earbuds for Sleeping, the Best Earbuds under 50 Dollars, the Most Comfortable Earbuds, as well as the Best Earbuds under 100 Dollars on the market.

noise isolating earbuds

So, What Are The Best Noise Isolating Earbuds?

Finding great noise isolating earbuds can be tricky. There are great active noise cancelling options at premium prices. The…Bose QuietComfort 20

is superb if you can afford them and the best of the lot.

If you’re not looking for anything fancy and just want to jam to your favorite tunes the…Sony MDR-XB50

is the best fit. They are inexpensive and sound great.

If you are in the market for certified earplug earphones, the…ISOtunes Xtra

…is by far your best option. The Bluetooth wireless connection is a great added feature for earbuds that focus on protecting your hearing and is convenient when doing physical work.

Happy listening.

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