Wired or wireless? The age-old question of headphone technology.
Choosing between the two types of headphones can be a difficult decision. While wired headphones offer a stable, dependable connection and often produce higher-quality sound, wireless headphones provide the convenience of a cord-free connection and increased mobility.
To help you choose the right pair, we've put together 7 quick tips to consider when making your decision. From sound quality to connectivity, battery life to durability, our tips will guide you through selecting the perfect pair of headphones for your lifestyle.
1. Does it have good sound quality?
Sound quality is generally the top priority when choosing a headphone. In terms of audio quality, wired headphones would produce a more accurate and dynamic sound due to the fact that wired headphones do not need to compress the audio signal to be transmitted wirelessly. At the same time, wired headphones reduce the risk of interference which otherwise would affect the quality of sound.
This means that wired headphones can produce a more accurate and dynamic sound quality and would be a great choice if sound quality is the no.1 most important factor about headphones to you.
However, the technology in wireless headphones is getting better and more advanced. Many now offer high-quality audio that is on par or even better than wired headphones. For those looking for wireless headphones that can really hit the spot with high-quality noise cancelling and concert-level sound qualities, check out Headphones 700 by Bose.
2. Is it easy to use?
Ease of use is the second most important factor to consider. When it comes to convenience, everyone has different views about how user-friendly their wired or wireless audio devices are.
Wired headphones have a plug-and-play setup that lets you play your music within seconds without the risk of any unwelcome connectivity issues. With wired headphones, there isn't a risk of any unwelcome connectivity issues.
However, there's no denying that wires can restrict the user's mobility and users always have to take extra care to prevent their wires from tugging on things or becoming tangled. Users are also physically tied to their audio source.
Wireless headphones, however, can function even when your mobile device or computer is a distance away. Without a cord, the risk of your headphones getting hooked on stuff by accident while you're on the go is virtually zero. Most wireless headphones also come with various controls that allow you to skip tracks, adjust the volume, and answer calls at the touch of a button.
3. Is it compatible with different devices?
Compatibility usually isn't a main factor one would consider when choosing headphones since they can generally connect to most devices. However, the audio performance can be a concern if you have a brand-new pair of wireless headphones that you want to connect to an 8-year-old laptop.
Bluetooth connection is the default connection mode for wireless headphones. Bluetooth versions are backwards-compatible and can work with lower Bluetooth versions, so there's no need to worry about your new headphones not working with an older phone or laptop. We recommend for the supported Bluetooth version be at least 4.0 or higher for optimal performance.
Another popular function to consider when choosing wireless headphones is whether they come with built-in voice assistance, such as Google Assistant, Siri or Amazon Alexa. If you use voice assistants regularly, having the option to control your music, make calls and set reminders with your voice is a significant plus in terms of convenience.
Wired headphones work with any device with a standard 3.5mm audio jack, but some newer devices may require an adapter. They are objectively simpler to use, as some wireless headphones may need you to download an application before they can be used.
For those that don't use voice assistants and don't need the one-touch functions that wireless headphones tend to come with, wired headphones are an easy choice in terms of ease of use.
4. Is it portable?
Both wired and wireless headphones have their pros and cons. Wired headphones typically have a cord that can be a hassle to deal with on the go since they get tangled by themselves sometimes. However, they don't require charging, so you never have to worry about wired headphones running out of battery life while travelling.
If portability is a top priority, consider investing in a pair of wireless headphones with long good battery life. Another option would be getting wireless earbuds which are small and easy to carry in your pocket or bag.
Ultimately, the choice between the two comes from your personal preferences and lifestyle.
5. Does it have good battery life?
Battery life can be a genuine concern when choosing between wired and wireless headphones. However, of the two options, only wireless headphones rely on battery power, so choosing a pair with good and long battery life is important.
The average wireless headphones have battery lives that last anywhere from 8-12 hours, some lasting even longer. So looking for one with a battery life that will last through your daily activities can never be a bad idea.
Some wireless headphones come with features such as fast charging, which is a great way to boost battery life while you're on the go. Fun fact — active noise-cancelling headphones consume more battery power to cancel out background noise, so they usually have a shorter battery life than regular wireless headphones.
6. Is it comfortable?
Both types of headphones can be comfortable to wear, but the fit and design can vary depending on their brands and the consumers they were designed for. Making sure to try out different styles and types is essential to find out which ones feel the most comfortable for you.
For wired headphones, the length of the cord and the weight of the headphones are the most significant factors to consider. The headphones you're considering should have a long enough cord to reach your device without being too bothersome or heavy.
For wireless headphones, over-the-ear headphones tend to have a more comfortable fit than on-ear headphones but can be bulkier. If comfort is youra priority to you, consider investing in a pair of lightweight wireless headphones designed to provide you with both quiet and comfort, such as the Bose QuietComfort® 45 headphones.
The materials used in the construction of the headphones play a big part too. For example, headphone cushions made with breathable materials would be preferable if you're constantly travelling or exercising, so your ears won't get too hot and sweaty even after hours of use.
7. Is it expensive?
Although wired headphones are cheaper than wireless headphones, both types of headphones can vary in price, from budget-friendly options to high-end, premium models.
You can find basic wired headphones for as little as $5, while premium models can cost several hundred dollars. Wireless headphones can also range in price and start around $50, while premium models could cost nearly a thousand. Keep in mind that wireless headphones require additional technology such as Bluetooth, voice assistants, noise cancelling functions and touchscreen functions that add up to the overall cost.
Wireless headphones with the functions mentioned above and long battery life would likely be more expensive.
Find your budget and look for a pair that offers your desired features and qualities within your price range. There isn't always a need to spend an arm to get a good pair of headphones, but consider the long-term cost.
So... wired or wireless headphones?
The answer is up to you. It depends on your intended use and what you value most in a pair of headphones. Use our list as a checklist to find one that suits all your needs when making a decision.
If you're looking to buy wireless headphones, check out our collection at One Futureworld. We provide free shipping to any address in Singapore. You can also visit our demo room to try out our headphones in person.