Best full sized passive noise isolation headphone WITH active noise cancellation? (Under $100)
Jun 23, 2020 at 4:57 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 4


New Head-Fier
Dec 28, 2016
I do quite a decent amount of walking and it's mainly in neighborhoods. Sometimes though there are people mowing, using edge trimmers, blowing by in really loud cars, motorcycles, etc. and I can hear it and it bothers me with my current headphones (Monoprice 8323 stock). I know those don't block enough to prevent hearing damage.

I do not like IEM's. I've been looking up and it seems like passive noise isolating headphones are better for medium pitch to high pitch noises and active noise cancellation is best for low to lower middle pitched noise.

So I was wondering what is the best headphone that has a combination of the two for under $100? Even if the SQ is lower should I also maybe look into those hearing protection headphones like the WorkTunes from 3M and such as well?

Thank you very much.
Jul 13, 2020 at 10:27 PM Post #2 of 4
I would check out and their noise isolation category/scores for wireless ANC over ear headphones. They measure attenuation with ANC off and with ANC on.

Typically, headphones that are more solidly built will have better passive isolation but it's only going to be effective for higher (shorter wavelength) frequencies. For the same reason, you can hear bass through walls, you'll hear outside bass through almost any headphone without active noise cancellation.

I have tried the 3M Worktunes and found their bluetooth to be quite poor. It would disconnect all the time with the phone in my pocket literally 4 feet away. Many Amazon reviewers complained of the same thing. Also, they are extremely bulky/heavy and would not be pleasant for me to wear if I was out walking/exercising.

For under $100, the Mpow H10 may be a model to look at. I own a pair and use them when running the snow blower and they work fairly decently for canceling out the lower frequencies. They don't eliminate all noise but when I take them off, I am amazed at just how loud the snow thrower is. But they run big and are too big for my small head - so it's not a perfect fit for me as they might say. If the Mpow H10 fit you well, they may be a good match given your price range. You can see what else has listed but the one other that comes to mind is the Mixcder E9 model (I think).

Good luck.
Jul 16, 2020 at 6:00 AM Post #3 of 4
This might not be what you're looking for but I know Costco often has the Sony WH-H900N for around $169 on sale (2 years ago, could be even cheaper now), over-budget but a pretty good fit to what you're looking for.

Another one would be the Sennheiser HD4.50 BTNC, on sale on Amazon now for $115ish but the noise cancelling isn't the best. I tried it on plane and it works quite well but you can still hear a little when people talk around you.
Feb 10, 2022 at 8:33 AM Post #4 of 4
This is similar dilemma to the one I'm in now, with the difference that my budget is even lower, about $50. :)
I need cheap ANC headphones for commuting and I mostly listen to audiobooks and podcasts. So things like nice bass and treble are not a must, it's mids that need to be fine (or at least passable). That and the sound isolation, bearing to mind the around ~$50 limit.

I'm looking at these headphones (some are above the price limit, but still worth considering):
Anker Soundcore Q20
Anker Soundcore Q30
Taotronic Soundsurge 90
Oneodio A30
Also another ones from above vendors, and several others like Mpow.

There's also this opinion on reddit where they comment some of the above headphones:

Based on all the reviews I managed to find (some on youtube, some written), the most likely candidate is Oneodio A30 (about $45 shipped). Only thing that I dislike is the white noise that some users report, and absence of ambient mod (which is not a deal breaker).

Can somebody offer another option/idea? :)

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