As of now, we are at the height of the corona crisis, and a record number are forced to work from home. Many people have not tested it for more than a short time, and then it is actually good to get away with the laptop to write an email or similar. When you suddenly have the whole work week at home, you quickly discover several things. It is inconvenient to sit at the kitchen table in the long run. And it’s hard to concentrate when a hundred other everyday matters take up space in the conscience. Suddenly you miss the office.
In addition to creating a more ergonomic workplace, there are things you can do to be able to concentrate. Partly to have clear working hours when you do not want to be disturbed. Partly to be able to lock yourself in to get some peace and quiet. It is not always possible to close a physical door, but there are technical aids that last a long time.
Noise-Canceling Headphones, block out much of the disturbing sounds. Partly because they are physically sound-insulating and partly because they also work actively to remove even more. Microphones record what sounds in the environment, and then a negative sound signal is generated that simply eliminates the noises. In this test, we look at more affordable models that more people can afford to get in order to work more efficiently.
Different types of noise reduction
How is it that noise-canceling headphones can cost anywhere from a few hundred bucks up to four times as much? It depends on the technique they use.
Feed Forward uses an out-of-the-clock microphone to detect noise. Thus, it hears the sound before the ear, and has more time to generate the signal and becomes better at filtering out high-frequency sound. The downside is that it does not hear what you hear, which can result in it actually amplifying the noise. It also operates on a narrower frequency range and is sensitive to wind noise.
Feedback uses a microphone inside the watch that hears what you hear. This allows it to adjust the signal if necessary. On the other hand, it is not enough to adjust high-frequency sound. It also requires a little finesse so that it does not filter out parts of the music along with the noise.
Hybrid noise reduction combines the two techniques and has microphones both inside and outside the watch. This allows it to filter high frequency sound and adjust the signal. On the other hand, the solution costs twice as much, and better microphones are also required, which further increases the price tag.
Products in this test
Supra Nitro-X BT
Superb sound quality
Supra Nitro-X BT passes competitor after competitor, but unfortunately stumbles on the finish line.
Good noise-cancelling has become cheap
Sony's budget model Sony WH-XB900N borrows from the luxury model and thus becomes impossible to beat.
Philips is back with affordable headphones
Philips PH805 sounds good for the price even if they didn't have noise reduction.
Jays q-Seven Wireless
Best budget choice
Jays q-Seven Wireless: It is impressive that you can get both good sound and ok noise reduction at this price.
JBL Live 650BTNC
Headphones full of contradictions
With as many disadvantages as advantages, it is difficult to recommend JBL Live 650BTNC.
More for commuting than long flights
Pioneer headphones Pioneer SE-S6BN works well on the street, but are not the most effective at reducing noise.
Sennheiser HD 450BT
Reliable Sennheiser headphones
Sennheiser's most affordable NC headphones Sennheiser HD 450BT is a safe purchase.