Best On-Ear Headphones in 2023 – Sublime Picks for Audiophiles

You may agree that the popularity of on-ear headphones has gone down in the last few years. However, it is not surprising that many youngsters find them to be as good as the over-head headphone models.

The on-ear headphone is the ideal model between the in-ear headphone and the over-head headphone. These models come fitted with smaller cups, that provide you with good music quality, and more importantly, give ventilation.

But they can fit much more tightly than over-head and in-ear models. Sometimes, it can provide you with an uncomfortable amount of pressure on your ears. During tests, we noticed that most of the brand models came with that kind of tight design.

However, the on-ear models come with a sound profile of your liking and definitely suit the type of music you listen to. Some of them come with additional features like Bluetooth support and active noise canceling (ANC).

In this post, we will be discussing about some of the best on-ear headphones that are sold in the market today. The model does not cover your ears entirely, which is something more of an acquired habit.

Best on-ear headphones in 2023

The over-head headphones are comfortable, durable, and even provide you with eloquent sound performance. While it can be a personal choice, but not everybody wants to wear bulky headphones with large earpads, is it not?

In contrast, the on-ear headphone comes with a small earcup that fit nicely on your ears, is travel-friendly too, and they cost relatively cheaper. Today, you can find a barrage of models in the market.

They come infused with active noise cancellation (ANC), noise isolation, and other advanced features. Here is a look at some of the best on-ear headphones that we have chosen based on main elements like audio performance, comfort, and budget.

1. Bowers & Wilkins PX5

Our first on-ear model on the list of the best on-ear headphones in 2023 would be the Bowers & Wilkins PX5 On-Ear Noise Cancelling Wireless Headphones. Now, Bowers & Wilkins have been producing eloquent models for many decades now.

The maker knows what they are doing with their luxury brand. Though their sales are not very high, the overall product is stunning. You can get everything you want from the headphone. Let us read to know more.

The model is quite lightweight and compact. It can deliver phenomenal sound performance that is produced on the Bowers & Wilkins exacting standards. It has been designed using 35mm drivers tuned to produce stunning sound quality.

The noise cancellation is powerful and ensures that you listen to what you are hearing to without any interference from outside. The adaptive noise canceling feature automatically adjusts to keep out the sound.

It has a phenomenal battery life that can provide you with 25 hours of sound performance. This can take you for 2-3 days of regular 7-8 hours of use. When you require some power, then you can recharge it for 15 minutes and get 3 hours of playback.

The model can do what you want. When you lift an ear cup to hear what’s happening around you, then be assured that the music automatically stops. You can put it back and the music plays on.

The model is produced from carbon fiber composite arms and has the strength and agility of the best models in the market. You can take them with you, anywhere. The model is priced under $400. Yes, it is costly, but sometimes the best things in life come at a price.

So, unless you want to enjoy the true powers of Bowers & Wilkins, you may want to look for something else.


  • An eloquent sound profile.
  • Goodbye to outside noise.
  • Powerful battery life.
  • Automatic features.
  • Designed from race cars.


  • It is expensive.
Bowers & Wilkins PX5
  • Brand: Bowers & Wilkins
  • Model Name: PX5
  • Color: Space Grey
  • Form Factor: On Ear
  • Connectivity Technology: Bluetooth


2. Jabra Elite 45h

Second, on the list of the best on-ear headphones is the Jabra Elite 45h, Titanium Black. Jabra is a popular company of headphones and they have been in the market for many years now. The model comes infused with advanced 40-millimeter speakers.

You will be delighted to know that it is the biggest this headphone category has to offer. The sound profile and the music performance are exquisite, wherever you listen. If you are somebody who likes to use headphones often, then you will be glad to know that it comes with 50 hours of battery life.

Besides, the model can charge quickly. When you want to listen to music, then charging it for 15 minutes can provide you with more than 1 hour of music and calls. There is the stupendous microphone call technology that lets you make and take calls on the go.

You can also use it on Alexa, Siri, and Google Assistant, with a touch of a button. We liked the design of the model. It comes compact, foldable, and lightweight, which are produced to be able to fit accurately.

It is made from soft and moldable memory foam ear cushions that provide ample comfort when you are using it. The headphone uses the latest Jabra technology, My Sound, which can be adjusted to the music experience.

With the help of the Jabra Soundplus app, you can also tweak and customize the sound quality. The model is priced under $100 making it very affordable. On the whole, this model is simply superb in several ways and comes with many features making it too hard to ignore.


  • Compact, foldable, and lightweight.
  • Customize the sound.
  • Advanced 40-millimeter speakers.
  • 2-microphone call technology.
  • It has 50 hours of battery life.


  • Poor outdoor experience.
Jabra Elite 45h
  • Brand: Jabra
  • Model Name: Elite 45h
  • Color: Titanium Black
  • Form Factor: On Ear
  • Connectivity Technology: Wireless, Bluetooth


3. JBL Live 460NC

Next on our list of the best on-ear headphones in 2023, is the JBL Live 460NC – Wireless On-Ear Noise Cancelling Headphones. JBL is no stranger to the headphone market and has produced stunning products over the years.

Their headphones are in great demand, and they make sublime on-ear headphones. The headphone features 40mm drivers and a sound signature. They produce opulent sound quality. Besides, the adaptive noise canceling is good and allows you to move around with ease.

We liked the TalkThru music feature that becomes lowered, and speech is amplified. This allows you to chat while keeping your headphones on. You can also choose the preferred voice assistant using your voice.

You can make use of the Ambient Aware feature to check the battery life or power off your headphone with your voice. With the help of the JBL app, you can simply set your preferred voice assistants.

You can now manage calls using the buttons on the ear cup. The mic technology enables you to perform stereo calls. You can make use of the model for 50 hours or 40 hours using the ANC and BT on.

You can charge it for 10 minutes to get 4 hours of playback. You will be delighted to know that the package comes with the JBL LIVE 460NC headphone, audio cable, USB-C cable, and QSG. Please use Android 6.0 or higher is required for full access to Alexa features.


  • Lightweight and foldable.
  • Exceptional sound quality.
  • Amazing battery life.
  • Fantastic Bluetooth pairing.
  • It is priced affordable.


  • Noise cancellation needs improvement.
JBL Live 460NC
  • Brand: JBL
  • Model Name: LIVE 460NC
  • Color: Black
  • Form Factor: On Ear
  • Connectivity Technology: Bluetooth 5.0


4. Beats EP

Fourth on the list of the best on-ear headphones in 2023, we have the Beats EP Wired On-Ear Headphones. Beats may not be as popular a company as Bose, Sennheiser, and Apple, but they do manufacture decent headphones.

This model has set the market on fire, and they have been able to sell several of the products with immense success. Read on to know why this unit is so unique. The model provides you with a masterfully tuned sound.

You can hear all the tones and the sound performance has intense quality. It is durable and has a lightweight design that is reinforced with stainless steel. This makes the model extremely reliable.

We liked the fact that you can take calls and control music on your iOS and Android devices. It is possible with the help of the RemoteTalk cable. The unit does not come with any battery, so you can have unlimited playback.

We liked the fitting offered on the model because it has adjustable vertical sliders for a personalized fit. Those of you who have large heads or ears need not worry because using the model, you can adjust the fitting as you want.

The only grouse is that the model does not come with ANC. This is something that we find quite weird because the models in the same price range have that feature in them. The model is priced under $100 and is affordable.


  • Lightweight design.
  • An aluminum headband design.
  • Excellent sound quality.
  • A soft carrying case.
  • It is passive only.


  • Does not come with ANC.
Beats EP
  • Brand: Beats
  • Model Name: Beats EP
  • Color: Black
  • Form Factor: On Ear
  • Connectivity Technology: Wired


5. Sennheiser HD 250BT

Our final product on the list of the best on-ear headphones in 2023 is the Sennheiser HD 250BT Bluetooth 5.0 Wireless Headphone. Sennheiser is one of the most popular headphone manufacturers in the world.

The model is infused with advanced wireless technology and high-quality sound. It comes with dynamic bass offering you with a stunning sound performance. There is an efficient audio quality with AAC, AptX codec support, and AptX Low Latency.

You will love the Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity which is amazing and can connect anywhere. The battery life is good at 25 hours. It also has excellent comfort because of the padded headband and ear pads.

The smart control app provides you with a personalized audio experience with an equalizer function. It also has a built-in microphone for phone calls. The quality of the calls was pretty good.

The model is priced under $50. A Sennheiser model comes with several features and is surely a brand for a value product. When you own a Sennheiser, there is no turning back. Why don’t you get one for yourself and see why they are popular among the users?


  • Amazing design.
  • Durable model.
  • Fantastic audio performance.
  • Exceptional Bluetooth connectivity.
  • It is cheaply priced.


  • Earcups can get painful after some time.
Sennheiser HD 250BT
  • Brand: Sennheiser Consumer Audio
  • Model Name: HD 250BT
  • Color: Black
  • Form Factor: On Ear
  • Connectivity Technology: Wireless, Bluetooth



We have ended our discussion on the best on-ear headphones. We hope that you found this write-up useful and were able to make up your mind. If you haven’t, then you can always read it again if you want to.

We have provided you with the above models based on what we think are currently the best units in the market. We have provided you with the product description, pros & cons, for you to make the proper decision.

Moreover, we have given you the buying guide on how we made the decision. As we said in the earlier part of the post, choosing on-ear headphones should be easier compared to other models, and is very much a straightforward decision.

You may not want to let the details confuse you. There is always scope for personal requirements, preferences, and listening needs in your selection. Please do write to us in the comment section telling us about your experience, we would be delighted to hear from you.

What is the purpose of the on-ear headphones?

The on-ear headphones were designed and produced for audiophiles and gym-goers. That is because they provide you with a tight fit and awesome sound performance. This provides you with intense audio quality and the ear cans do not fall down that easily due to a secure fit.

Who are the on-ear headphones for?

The on-ear headphones can be used by audiophiles and those who hit the gym. When you are somebody who likes to listen to opulent music, then the on-ear model would suit your requirement.

Likewise, when you are somebody who does a lot of physical activity like running, jogging, trekking, and using the gym, then headphones might be suitable. That is because of the secure fit, they do not come out from your head easily.

Why are the on-ear headphones expensive?

Most of the on-ear headphones are expensive as they come with several exquisite features in them. They can produce good sound quality, they have a proper fitting on medium-sized heads, and they are produced from durable materials.

Even if they fall down a few times, unlike other models, these do not break that easily. Due to the tight fitting, they can be used by people of all ages. So, if you are looking to get a gift for your kids, then this model can suit your needs.

Is a $50 on-ear headphone a good option?

Yes, a $50 on-ear headphone is definitely a good option because it comes embedded with several features. There is durability, music quality, and functionality. However, we can’t assure you of the overall features of the headphone.

Do on-ear models offer you with sublime music quality?

Definitely, they do. The headphone offers you with sublime music quality. Now, you can hear your favorite songs and watch movies as well. Besides, you can also use the model for doing your physical activities.

James Smith has always been intrigued by electronic products since his childhood. After his post graduation in electronics from a popular university, he decided to pursue a career in the electronics sector. But his calling for writing about these marvellous pieces of work got the better of him. That is how UBG was started. With a writing career spanning more than 12 years, James has worked on several hundred product reviews. During his free time, he like to spend time with his pet dog and relax in the swimming pool.