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The 4 Best Beats Alternatives

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Beats by Dre makes headphones with amazing audio quality and tons of great features, but they come at an expensive price point. The best Beats alternatives offer the gold standard of Bluetooth connectivity to ensure you never miss a beat, adequate drivers to accurately produce a great range of sound, and built-in mics to support phone calls and voice commands.

For the most seamless pairing with your devices, you’ll want to pick headphones that use Bluetooth 5.0, which is the most up-to-date wireless communication standard. Not only does Bluetooth 5.0 work faster over longer distances than its predecessors, minimizing lag, but it also uses less power for longer battery life and listening times.

If sound quality is your biggest deciding factor, you’ll want to pay attention to the headphones' driver size. The drivers are essentially the small speakers inside each headphone and are typically better able to reproduce powerful mids and lows with a larger diameter. Since earbuds are naturally smaller than on-ear or over-ear headphones, they’ll have correspondingly smaller drivers. For fitness aficionados, you’ll want a water resistance rating of IPX5 or higher to ensure your headphones can stand up to sweat or light rain.

Another factor to consider is the battery life. Someone who wears their headset during long commutes and throughout the workday will need significantly more battery power than someone who only wears their headphones a few hours a day. If you plan to use your headphones to make calls or for virtual meetings, you’ll also want to make sure you pick a pair with an internal mic, ideally one with noise cancellation that makes your voice sound clear while filtering out ambient noise.

1. The Best Alternative To Beats Studio 3 Wireless Headphones

  • Drivers: 40mm
  • Battery life: 30 hours
  • Bluetooth: 5.0
  • Active noise cancellation: yes
  • Water resistance: IPX5

These over-ear headphones with active noise cancellation offer many of the same features as the Beats Studio 3 at a fraction of the price. The soft foam pads with adjustable cups are super comfortable to wear, which is a great complement to this headset’s outstanding battery life. You can use these merely for active noise cancellation for up to 40 hours, or listen to music or videos for up to 30 hours. On the off chance you do run out of battery, you can still listen and charge simultaneously using the headphones’ wired mode.

If you’d rather stay in tune with your surroundings, these headphones also offer a transparency mode which lets in ambient sounds of traffic or conversations. The audio quality is also superb, with 40mm drivers that produce powerful and clear sound.

Tribit’s headphones run on Bluetooth 5.0, which minimizes latency and stays connected with up to 33 feet of wireless range. They also boast an IPX5 water resistance rating, so they can handle sweat or a bit of unexpected rain. When it’s time to stow these headphones away, they fold down to save space and come with a soft and compact padded case.

One reviewer wrote: “Absolutely amazing what Tribit has pulled off at this price point. Clear, full sound with a huge stage. Clean design and fantastic semi-hard case. There is zero difference between the sound with ANC on or off. I can't state it well enough to do these justice. If you are looking for the best under $200 get them!!!”

2. The Best Alternative To Beats Solo Pro

  • Drivers: 40mm
  • Battery life: 50 hours
  • Bluetooth: 5.0
  • Active noise cancellation: no
  • Water resistance: not rated

These sleek on-ear headphones from Jabra can stand up to long days of listening, with up to 50 hours of battery life per charge. They also boast an ultra-fast charging time — just 15 minutes of charging can give you up to 10 hours of listening. The 40mm drivers produce robust sound, but you can also customize your listening preferences using Jabra’s MySound app to prioritize different ranges or adjust volume for each ear.

These headphones also work well with voice assistants like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant, and they have two internal microphones to reduce noise during phone calls. You can pair them to two devices at once, so it’s easy to hop between a call on your phone to music playing on your laptop or vice versa.

The on-ear design with plush memory foam ear pads is a little more compact than over-ear headphones, and can be more comfortable for prolonged use for those with glasses while also lending passive noise cancellation. The headset also folds down to a compact size for easy storage.

One reviewer wrote: “I'm used to using larger, more expensive headsets, that have almost an identical sound element as this headset. I was surprised by the quality of these headphones. The manufacturer thought of small details such labeling the left and right inside the cushion. These headphones are convenient to travel with due to their slim design. They have a stunning slick look. Lightweight. Extremely comfortable to wear. The headset talks you through the process of downloading the app. Definitely easy to set up. On the app you have options to customize or change the music presets. The battery can last up to 50 hours!”

3. The Best Alternative To Powerbeats

  • Drivers: 10mm
  • Battery life: 12 hours
  • Bluetooth: 5.0
  • Active noise cancellation: no
  • Water resistance: IPX7

The Flame 2 sport headphones come with several options for silicone tips, memory foam tips, ear wings, and more to ensure a comfortable fit, and the flexible ear-loop design helps keep them secure, even during super vigorous workouts. They also boast an IPX7 water resistance rating, which means they can survive an accidental dunk in a pool or a sudden downpour.

The Flame2 uses Bluetooth 5.0, so you can expect to listen to videos and music with minimal lag while also using less power overall. These headphones are also able to connect to two devices simultaneously, and feature noise cancellation on the internal mic to help reduce background noise and keep your voice sounding clear.

Since the earbuds are smaller by design than on-ear or over-ear headphones, the drivers are also smaller at 10mm. But reviewers noted that the Flame2 headphones are still able to produce powerful bass and are adequately loud for tuning out background noise during workouts.

One reviewer wrote: “The bass knocks on these. These are the best budget headphones hands down. In my humble opinion, they're better or on par with Beats sound quality. This company delivers. What they lack in marketing they make up in quality performance. If you don't believe me, look up any YouTube video about these.”

4. The Best Alternative To PowerBeats Pro

  • Drivers: not listed
  • Battery life: 35 hours
  • Bluetooth: 5.0
  • Active noise cancellation: yes
  • Water resistance: IPX7

These truly wireless headphones from Holy High come in three colors and are great for everyday wear. The IPX7 water resistance rating on these headphones means they will stand up to sweat or rain, and Bluetooth 5.0 ensures stable connections to your devices while listening to music or taking phone calls.

The Holy High earbuds have a five-hour battery life, but the included charging case extends the battery life up to 35 hours. The case offers fast-charging as well, and can be fully charged up in 1.5 hours. The earbuds have a soft ear-hook design that stays in place during high-intensity activities like running or jumping, but still feel comfortable after prolonged use.

The driver size isn’t listed for these headphones, but reviewers were impressed by the sound and pleasantly surprised by the quality of active noise cancellation. At $40, the value of what you get for the price point can’t be overstated.

One reviewer wrote: “The quality of these headphones are amazing! They are my go to when I go to the gym. What I also like about this is the charging case. It's so convenient! After you are done using them, just pop them right into the charging case. Never have to worry about them dying on me either. The comfortability is the best. It doesn't bother my ears at all. It also stays in my ear during my workouts as well. The sound and noise cancelation is great. The sound is very crisp and pleasing. Overall, I definitely recommend these headphones. You won't regret it.”

Also Great: A Pair Of Beats Headphones That Won’t Break The Bank

  • Drivers: not listed
  • Battery life: 12 hours
  • Bluetooth: 5.0
  • Active noise cancellation: no
  • Water resistance: not rated

If you’re looking for a pair of brand-name Beats headphones at an accessible price point, the Beats Flex earbuds are a perfect pick. They have a layered driver with dual chambers that deliver powerful bass that sounds rich and well-balanced. With the headphones’ 12-hour battery life, you’ll be able to listen to your favorite music or podcasts all day without stopping to charge.

Thanks to Apple’s W1 chip, pairing these headphones to your Apple devices is instant and easy. If you use an Android, there’s an extra step of downloading the Beats app in order to adjust your headphones' setting or monitor their battery life. Either way, the headphones use Bluetooth 5.0 for the best connection possible between the earbuds and your devices.

Snapping the earbuds together using their internal magnets will automatically pause your music, and the inline control features a single multifunction button for answering calls, pausing music and the like and a volume button on the side. These headphones don’t have a listed water resistance rating or noise-cancelling capabilities, so if those features are important to you, check out some of the other picks on this list.

One reviewer wrote: “Just got these a few days ago, and I LOVE them. The battery life is great! It charges in less than an hour and for the price the sound quality is pretty good. The Bass hits well, so do the Mids and Lows. I also like the W1 chip inside these headphones, works well on both my android phone and on my 5th Gen Ipad. Overall, these are a great pair of headphones to pick this Holiday Season.”