Not everyone has hundreds to spend on a pair of Apple AirPods. Luckily, there are lots of cheap wireless earphones out there that can sound just as good as more expensive options, but their price sounds a million times better.
But buying cheap earbuds can be a minefield, because you never really know what you’re going to get – especially if it’s from a Chinese brand you’ve never heard of.
You could argue that you get what you pay for, except that really isn’t the case, and we’ve found some amazing products at significantly lower prices. The options here are all under £100/US$100.
To save you the headache of finding a pair of Bluetooth earphones that impress on more than just price, we’ve rounded up some of our favourite wireless buds. Our expert team have tested all these options, so you can be sure that you’re getting a truly great deal. You can also check our main
wireless earbuds chart, too.
how we test audio.
Best budget wireless earbuds 2022
Enacfire A9 – Best Overall
If you want active noise cancelling wireless earbuds without breaking the bank then you’ve come to the right place.
Enacfire has done a great job with the A9, which are readily available for under £50, undercutting rivals. And said noise cancelling is decent along with good sound quality, useful touch controls, solid battery life and a comfortable fit.
That’s a lot of boxes to tick at this price and really the only downsides are the average ambient mode and that fact you can only buy the headphones in black.
Spend a little more on Anker or Huawei if you can but these won’t disappoint if you’re on a tighter budget
Anker Soundcore Life A2 NC – Best ANC Performance
If you’re not on a really tight budget then you’ll really struggle to find better wireless earbuds for this kind of money.
They might have a slightly cheap-feeling case and no auto-pausing tech but those downsides are massively overshadowed by great performance and a surprisingly comprehensive feature set.
As well as powerful bass, the A2 buds have excellent noise cancelling with three presets for different environments and the app offers EQ sound customisation. Throw in touch controls and solid battery life and there’s very little to dislike.
These are the best budget noise cancelling wireless earbuds you can get.
Xiaomi Redmi Buds 3 Pro – ANC & Wireless Charging
Xiaomi has done a great job with its latest wireless earbuds, offering premium features that you will struggle to find elsewhere.
Not only do they have active noise cancelling, but they have wireless charging and ear detection as standard. Add solid audio, battery life and dual-device connectivity and the Redmi Buds 3 Pro are a top-notch option.
Sure, there are no volume controls but that’s fairly standard and some ANC modes are exclusive to Xiaomi devices but they are still a great budget option.
Google Pixel Buds A – Best Smart Features
At the top end of the budget market, the Pixel Buds A have some omissions that might make you look elsewhere. Mainly the lack of noise cancelling and limited battery life of the buds on their own, although fast charging helps here.
However, Google’s cheapest earbuds will appeal to those looking for something a little different to rivals. While they are comfortable and offer good sound quality, it is the smart features that make them stand out.
The Google Assistant is built-in, there’s ear detection, Fast Pair, Adaptive Sound, real-time translation and more.
OnePlus Buds Z2 – Best for Comfort
Although they are a chunk more expensive than the previous model, the Buds Z2 are a huge improvement and well worth considering if you have enough budget. They are still very comfortable and the app offers a fit test.
They are better with OnePlus phones though as features like Dolby Atmos and low-latency are exclusive. Still, there are lots of smart features available regardless such as Fast Pair, multi-device connectivity, wear detection and customisable touch controls.
Furthermore, sound quality and ANC are both great and battery life can be long if you don’t use noise cancelling too much.
Huawei Freebuds 4i – Best for Huawei Users
Huawei has improved its budget wireless earbuds once again and they are close to being the best you can get with ANC.
The noise cancelling is good and the sound quality is top-notch as well. You’ll also benefit from solid battery life with up to 10 hours from the earbuds alone. The case has quick charging but can’t top the buds up many times.
While the buds are comfortable the case design is awkward and the touch controls are limited, too.
Although you don’t need the AI Life app for much, getting it from the App Gallery is a pain if you don’t have a Huawei phone so the FreeBuds 4i aren’t a no brainer, especially with Anker’s at the same price.
Nothing Ear (1) – Best Feature Set
From the former co-founder of OnePlus, the Nothing Ear (1) are an excellent proposition, nipping in at just under our budget price limit.
Perhaps surprising and yet they still have the kind of features typically found on pairs much more expensive. This includes active noise cancelling, wireless charging and waterproofing – a combination you won’t find anywhere else at this price range.
Overall they are good and while some will love the unusual design, others will be put off by it making them a marmite choice. They would rank higher in this chart if audio quality and battery life were better.
Mobvoi Earbuds ANC – Affordable ANC & Voice Control
Getting active noise cancelling for under £50 (or $60) is unusual so this makes the Mobvoi Earbuds stand out on its own.
While the ANC performance isn’t amazing, there is also a useful Sound Pass-Through mode so it’s not simply on or off. Sound quality is overall decent and you can also make use of voice commands and touch controls, the latter being particularly unusual at this price.
You don’t have any volume control which is a shame and the battery life of the earbuds alone is limited to under three hours.
OnePlus Nord Buds – Affordable Dolby Atmos
If you want comfortable, long-lasting and solid sounding wireless earbuds for under £50 then the OnePlus’s first effort under the Nord branding are a decent option.
They’ll last a total of 30 hours with fast charging getting you an impressive five hours of playback from a 10-minute charge. We also found the design to be irritation-free for long sessions.
Sound quality is great for cheap earbuds thanks in part to large drivers and support for Dolby Atmos with selected OnePlus phones. You also get EQ to customise the sound and touch controls, too. The main downside here is the lack of active noise cancelling.
Jabra Elite 3 – Best Call Quality
The Jabra Elite 3 don’t tear up the rule book or do anything particularly outstanding, but that doesn’t mean they’re bad.
For a reasonable price, they offer impressive sound quality for a range of tasks, solid battery life, great call quality and excellent comfort – so much so you might forget you’re wearing them at times.
Perhaps enough for most people, but you can get ANC elsewhere for this price and the touch controls are fiddly.