The Best Noise Cancelling Headphones Under $100

Headphones provide a wonderful means to isolate from the trials and tribulations of a hectic world, and just sit back to enjoy some music. Maybe with a cup of coffee, maybe with a good book, maybe out in the sun with your eyes closed, truly listening to the tones and the lyrics of that album you’ve been waiting to absorb for months now. I know I love to spend the last 45 minutes of my day in my pitch-black bedroom with my headphones on listening to some new music.

But there is a problem. If you live in an area that is inundated with noise (like I do), or experience bustling commutes daily, it can be difficult to hear your music over the tones of the outside world. The only way to cut this ambient noise sometimes is to jack the volume up of the sound entering your ears from these headphones. Which can be harmful to your hearing in the long term.

Relax, as there is a solution to this in the form of noise-cancelling headphones. Surprisingly, there are some solid noise cancelling options on the market that won’t cost an arm and a leg. While the strongest models will generally cost at least $300, plenty of options exist that dull a good percentage of outside noise for under $100. While there are some compromises that will need to be made regarding sound quality and experience, in the end, you will enjoy your music and have a much better overall experience.

Four of the strongest-performing noise cancelling headphones that fall under the $100 range that I have tested for this guide include:

  • Monster Inspiration
  • TaoTronics TT BH 07
  • Lindy BNX 60

1. Monster Inspiration

The Monster Inspiration was a solid set of noise cancelling headphones when I reviewed and tested them. They do a solid job of blocking out external distractions, while at the same time providing a relatively crisp sound quality for music playback.

Product Specifications

  • Brand name: Monster Cable
  • Sound mode: Stereo
  • Connectivity: Wired/Wireless
  • Earpiece Design: Over the Head
  • Earpiece Category: Binaural
  • Form: Circumaural
  • Dimensions (W x D x H): 171.5mm x 95.3mm x 254mm
  • Weight (g): 997.9 grams

Sound Quality

Sound-wise, I tested them out initially in a quiet space without the noise cancelling feature activated. The sound performance was fine, aligned with what would be expected with studio-style headphones at similar price points. The sound-based details were impressive, with accurate timings and middle-of-the-road dynamic ranges. However, the clarity left a little bit to be desired.

Tone balance was solid, which was a relief, as Monster also makes Beats by Dre, which are notorious for having a far exaggerated low-end. With the noise cancelling feature engaged, the sound difference was impressive. Listening to music in a coffee shop, I was unable to distinguish the hum and chatter of the patrons and the sounds of the coffee being prepared, although I did hear beans being ground ever so slightly.

One potential issue I noticed with the noise cancellation feature of the Monster Inspiration wireless headphones turned on is that the music quality diminishes. The sound hardens quite a bit, the bass gets a bit more booming, and the subtle notes are put by the wayside to drown out the outside noise.

Design Specs

The Monster Inspiration comes with a padded travel case, with a belt clip and handle. The headphones themselves are heavier and solidly built. They are a hair under 12 ounces in weight, and are glossy plastic and brushed metal. They fold well, swiveling in with solid hinges.

The Monster Inspiration’s headband and ear cups have soft padding, with faux leather coated foam. The clamp force is tight, so the headphones don’t fall off if head-banging to some tunes. The look is clean and the lines are sharp, but not too gaudy to wear in public.

The headband strap is replaceable, and interchangeable between the same faux leather on the ear cups or some standard PVC. Both are included in the headphone package. The wireless capabilities last up to 40 hours on two AAA batteries.

My Take

The noise cancelling headphones by Monster are well above average. The design and comfort is solid, and the battery life is impressive. The noise cancelling capabilities and sound quality is decent as well. There are better studio headphones at the price point, and better noise cancelling headphones at the price point, but the combination of the two can’t be beaten.

2. TaoTronics TT BH 07

Taotronics has been making some of the most well-reviewed headphones on Amazon. A relatively new to the market business compared to the others on this list, these headphones sell like crazy, as their price point is very low. However, do I think they are worth the purchase for their noise-cancelling ability?

The TT BH 07 are earbuds that are Bluetooth capable, wireless, rechargeable, and noise cancelling, all for half the price of the other headphones on my list.

Product Specifications

  • Brand name: TaoTronics
  • Sound mode: Stereo
  • Connectivity: Wireless
  • Earpiece Design: Behind the Neck
  • Earpiece Category: Binaural
  • Form: In Ear
  • Dimensions (W x H): 24.9mm x 32mm
  • Weight (g): 15 grams

Sound Quality

Within my first couple of minutes of using the Taotronics TT BH 07, I did not notice any measurable issues. The trebles are not ear-piercing, and the bass is not too overpowering. However, I did note that everything seemed a little bit flat.

Trebles and upper-mids sounded lifeless and synthetic. A negligible punch for bass also provides a limited drive rhythmically. But of course, these are earbuds, not studio headphones, so that should be noted. These potential sound related issues still keep these headphones in line with similarly priced Bluetooth earbuds.

To be completely honest, the music sounds a bit flat due to overall poor separation, flatter presentation of notes, and limited detail in tones. The sound issues for noise cancelling headphones might seem off putting, however it should be noted that these headphones are very low priced, and still provide noise cancelling features.

Design Specs

These earbuds are wireless, but have a wire between buds. They are magnetic and aluminum backed, so can be connected around the neck when not listening. Nothing about these headphones scream that they are priced as low as they are. In fact, they appear like headphones costing triple the price.

The metal caps on the earpiece have a solid design, and there are no telling seams or flimsiness in the hard plastic. The comfort level is acceptable, and there is a three-button remote that is ergonomically friendly and quick to respond to motion.

Also, the earpieces are large and fit securely with silicone tips and heavy duty ear hooks. The value for the money is increased with the Taotronics TT BH 07 due to its nose cancellation features and Bluetooth technology inclusion. The battery life is slightly low, clocking in at a five-hour playtime before needing to be recharged. It is perfect for every day use, though.

My Take

The Taotronics TT BH 07 are one of the best noise cancelling headphones under $100 on the market today. They are also the only ones on this list that are not studio headphones. With their extremely low price point and high portability compared to alternatives, they are one of the most solid noise cancelling earbuds on the market. While their sound leaves much to be desired compared to the other options in my list, they are earbuds, not studio style headphones.

3. Lindy BNX 60

Noise cancelling headphone markets have grown dramatically in the past several years. Whether looking for an inexpensive pair or looking to break the bank, choices are abound. The Lindy BNX 60 headphones combine active noise cancelling tech with Bluetooth wireless capabilities, all for under $100. Overall, I was impressed.

Product Specifications

  • Brand name: LINDY
  • Sound mode: Stereo
  • Connectivity: Wired/Wireless
  • Earpiece Design: Over the Head
  • Earpiece Category: Binaural
  • Form: Circumaural

Sound Quality

The affordability of the Lindy BNX 60, combined with their noise cancelling capacity and Bluetooth functionality, is difficult to match. Regarding sound, I was expecting to get a bright and tinny treble and cringingly booming bass. I was sadly mistaken. They delivered a balanced sound that was extremely simple and clean. The bass is detailed and clear, and the beats with the hi-hats were kept to a minimum.

These headphones also deliver a solid groove and don’t overpower with vocal ranges, although the vocals do sound a little bit muffled from time to time, depending on the singer. As noise cancelling has a tendency to accentuate treble far more than bass, turning the volume up with these tends to brighten tonal balances well.

When turning on the noise cancelling feature, it is expected that I would experience a drop in sound quality. However, I was surprised that the sound quality was minimally affected, while still doing a great job at blocking out external noises. This is all when wired. Going wireless affect the focus and punch expected when running things through Bluetooth (think the power difference between Ethernet and wifi), but it’s negligible.

Design Specs

The Lindy BNX 60 has a far more compact build than previous models, with a more adjustable headband and narrowed (yet still comfortable) earpads. They have a snug and comfortable fit, made for average sized ears like mine. They also do a solid job at noise isolation.

There is volume control, and the noise cancellation is a simple on/off switch. There is also a USB input for charging, control of tracks, and a standard input for wired options if needed. There are also multiple adapters and a solid black carrying case. There Lindy also comes with a detachable headphone cable.

The power for the BNX 60 comes from USB, connectable to a computer or standard power source, providing intense wireless sound and noise cancelling power. This is a solid advancement over AAA batteries, and when in wireless, a full charge lasts 16 hours and slightly less with active noise cancelling engaged.

My Take

The Lindy BNX 60 is not the ideal pair of headphones for audiophiles. However, when categorizing wireless, noise cancelling headphones under the $100 price point, they are difficult to beat. It’s difficult to find fault when recalling the price, and if you place value on the functionality, you can’t really go wrong with these headphones. Overall, we were very impressed.

My Overall Conclusion

Noise cancellation is a difficult thing to achieve. It’s even more difficult to achieve this and be a profitable headphone business with a sale price under $100. And it’s another animal entirely to maintain some semblance of sound quality to appease the audiophiles, while having noise cancellation features, and still being profitable with a product that meets these needs for under $100.

The fact that I could test out three models that met these specifications and still performed admirably is impressive. They all have features that make them very appealing to a variety of people.

Are you on the hunt for a compact, in-ear experience that doesn’t leave you looking like you work on an airport runway with studio headphones hanging off your head? For a more discreet noise cancelling experience, the Taotronics TT BH 07 is the perfect solution, at an unbeatable price point. However, this convenience comes at the sacrifice of some of the audio quality.

Are you instead looking for a stylish studio headphone style experience, providing a solid blend of price, audio quality, convenience, and noise cancelling abilities? If so, selecting either the Monster Inspiration or the Lindy BNX 60 will get the job done. It’s all a matter of perspective, and there are definitely more noise cancelling headphones out there at the under $100 price point. However, from what I reviewed, these are the three pairs that get the job done, and to me are the best noise-cancelling headphones under $100.

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