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What is Active Noise Cancelling Headphones?

  • 20 min read

Active Noise Cancelling Headphones – An Introduction

Active noise cancelling headphones are a type of headphones that use technology to cancel out external sounds. By analyzing the incoming sound, the headphones emit an inverted sound wave that cancels out the external noise, creating a more immersive sound experience. These headphones are ideal for environments with high levels of ambient sound, such as airplanes or busy offices. They come in various designs and sizes with different features and price ranges.

One of the most significant benefits of active noise cancelling headphones is that they reduce the potential for hearing damage caused by playing music too loudly in noisy environments. With this technology, it’s possible to listen to lower volumes while enjoying clear audio quality. Noise-cancellation also increases productivity and concentration, leading to better performance in tasks requiring attention.

In addition to external sounds, some advanced models allow users to switch between active noise cancellation and ambient modes, amplifying specific sounds like announcements or conversations.

Pro Tip: When using active noise cancelling headphones for extended periods, take breaks every hour or so to avoid ear fatigue.

Think of active noise cancelling technology as a bouncer at a noisy club, kicking out all the unwanted sounds and leaving only the sweet melodies of your music.

Understanding Active Noise Cancelling Technology

To understand the active noise cancelling technology in headphones, you need to know how it works and its benefits. How active noise cancelling works and the benefits it provides for headphones are detailed in this section.

How Active Noise Cancelling Works

Active Noise Cancelling technology utilizes electronic processing to cancel out unwanted sound by producing opposing sound waves. These waves accurately mimic and counter the incoming noise, neutralizing it before it reaches our ears. By doing so, it diminishes external disturbances like traffic noise or the hum of airplane engine on long flights.

This mechanism relies on the use of microphones placed near our ears that pick up external sounds. The sound system quickly identifies the duration between actual externally generated sound and their antiphase signals, which reverse the phase of actual ones. The system adjusts its frequency accordingly and continues to produce these composite antiphase signals unless there is a change in circumstances or environment.

Additionally, ANC functions best for noises with repetitive waves and confined space-like echoing sensory due to its wave mobility property. Additionally, ANC devices are effective in reducing low-frequency background noise levels whilst battling limited reach when presented with high-frequency noises such as sudden shrieks or human voices.

Do not miss out on enjoying your favorite TV shows peacefully or listening to your favorite music without any disturbance with active noise cancelling headphones! Wondering how headphones work? With various forms available depending upon budget and type of need, it’s time you get yourself one!

With active noise cancelling headphones, you can finally ignore your annoying co-workers without actually having to ignore them.

Benefits of Active Noise Cancelling Headphones

Active Noise Cancelling Technology Ensures Peaceful Listening Experience

  • Reduces surrounding noise for better concentration
  • Protects ears from high-decibel background sound
  • Prevents hearing damage and fatigue
  • Improves audio quality by reducing external noise
  • Enhances music listening experience in noisy environments
  • In-built microphones allow users to switch between cancellation levels

Additionally, active noise cancelling headphones are equipped with a rechargeable battery that can last for hours. The lightweight design ensures they are comfortable to wear for extended periods.

Research suggests that active noise cancelling technology not only helps reduce distractions but also promotes productivity, creativity, and overall well-being.

Studies show that individuals exposed to constant noise have an increased risk of heart disease, stress, anxiety, and poor cognitive function. Active noise cancelling technology can help counteract these negative effects.

According to Consumer Reports, the best active noise cancelling headphones as of 2021 are the Sony WH-1000XM4 and the Bose QuietComfort Earbuds.

If you’re looking to drown out the noise of your co-workers, ex-partner or just life in general, these types of active noise cancelling headphones have got your back (and your ears).

Types of Active Noise Cancelling Headphones

To better understand the different types of active noise cancelling headphones, you need to divide them into sub-sections. In order to find the perfect headphones for your needs, this section, “Types of Active Noise Cancelling Headphones,” will detail Over-ear, In-ear, and On-ear headphones.

Over-ear Headphones

Over-ear headphones are a type of active noise cancelling headphones that enclose the ear completely. This type of headphone offers an immersive audio experience by blocking external noise and generating high quality sound.

  • They provide excellent noise isolation due to the large size of the ear cups.
  • They are comfortable to wear for long periods as they distribute the pressure evenly across the head.
  • Over-ear headphones come in both wired and wireless variations with advanced features like touch controls, voice assistants, and ambient mode.
  • Their sound quality is superior to on-ear or in-ear headphones, making them ideal for music production and critical listening.
  • Many over-ear headphones have a foldable design for easy storage and portability.
  • Some brands offer customizable sound profiles through their companion apps which can be personalized according to user preferences.

It is essential to consider factors such as weight, size, and battery life while buying over-ear headphones. Some models may be bulky and heavy, causing discomfort after extended use. Additionally, some batteries may not last long enough for travel purposes. Hence it is imperative to choose a pair based on personal preference and use case.

A friend once told me how he used his over-ear headphones while working from home during the pandemic. The noise-canceling headphones technology blocked out any interruptions from his surroundings and helped him focus better on his work. He was also pleasantly surprised at how comfortable it was to wear all day without causing any discomfort or pain.

In-ear headphones: because sometimes you just need to cancel out the world and get lost in your own earwax.

In-ear Headphones

In-ear earphones: A professional’s guide

In-ear headphones function by creating a seal between the listener’s ear canal and the headphone driver, blocking out external noise. Here are four types of in-ear headphones you should know about:

  • Passive In-ear Headphones that provide noise reduction through insulation alone.
  • Noise Isolating Earphones with silicone or foam tips for better noise isolation.
  • Active Noise Reduction Earbuds with electronic circuitry designed to neutralize background noise.
  • Tri-Port Acoustic Headphones using an acoustic array to block ambient sound effectively.

Moreover, In-ear headphones improve sound quality by reducing distortion caused by environmental noise, providing comfort and portability for extended usage.

Fun Fact: The origins of in-ear headphones go way back to the 1950s when engineer John C. Koss developed his first pair of stereo earbuds as a wave of personal audio equipment was emerging. Today, countless options with advanced technological features make in-ear headphones a popular choice among consumers looking for an immersive listening experience.

Block out the world and your coworker’s terrible music taste with these on-ear noise cancelling headphones.

On-ear Headphones

On-ear headphones are a type of noise cancelling headphones that fit on the ears. These headphones use noise cancelling technology to limit external sounds, offering an enhanced listening experience.

  • On-ear headphones come in different shapes and sizes, with varying levels of noise cancellation technology.
  • They are popular for their lightweight design, making them more comfortable to wear for extended periods.
  • On-ear headphones are often more affordable compared to over-ear or in-ear noise cancelling headphones.

Unlike over-ear headphones, on-ear headphones do not completely cover the ear, which means they may not be suitable for users looking for complete noise isolation.

A study by Statista shows that global shipments of headphones that block out background noise when talking are forecasted to reach 336 million units by 2024.

Block out the world, but never the bass – explore the must-have features of active noise cancelling headphones.

Key Features of Active Noise Cancelling Headphones

To understand the key features of active noise cancelling headphones, the article focuses on providing you with a solution through the exploration of sub-sections. These include noise-cancellation strength, design and comfort, battery life and charging time, and compatibility with various devices.

Noise-cancellation Strength

The ability of headphones to reduce external noise is crucial for an uninterrupted listening experience. Understanding the Noise-cancellation Strength of active noise-cancelling headphones helps in determining the level of isolation from ambient sounds. A table showcasing different models and their noise-cancellation strength can assist buyers in making informed decisions. The below table illustrates the noise-cancellation strength of three popular headphones – Sony WH-1000XM4, Bose QuietComfort 35 II, and Sennheiser Momentum 3.

HeadphonesNoise-Cancellation Strength
Sony WH-1000XM4Excellent
Bose QuietComfort 35 IIVery Good
Sennheiser Momentum 3Good

It is crucial to note that the Noise-cancellation Strength of a headphone is not merely judged by its ANC technology but also by design and build quality. Therefore, it is best to research before buying earphones. Pro Tip: Check out reviews from trusted sources to ensure that you make an informed buying decision when purchasing active noise-cancelling headphones. Who needs a masseuse when you have Active Noise Cancelling headphones, giving your ears a much needed break from screaming kids and wailing sirens.

Design and Comfort

For the auditory experience to be of high quality, active noise cancelling headphones need to have a suitable design and comfort level. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

  • The design of active noise cancelling headphones must strike a balance between stylishness and functionality. They ought to boast an appealing aesthetic that distinguishes them from standard headphones, while still providing sufficient functionality.
  • Noise cancelling headphones ought to fit snugly on the head without being too tight or too loose. This makes sure they provide ample noise insulation without causing discomfort during prolonged usage.
  • High-quality cushioning – whether made from leather or synthetic materials – enhances the user’s comfort when utilizing these headphones. The cushioning should be absorbent, moisture-wicking, and breathable.
  • Active noise cancelling headphone designs should carefully consider ergonomics by taking into account various head shapes and sizes. Additionally, many individuals wear glasses as well; therefore having a comfortable band reduces pressure on the ears, making them more practical.

A lesser-known aspect is that certain wireless active noise cancelling headphones often employ touch controls which function significantly with touchpads located on each cup. Rather than pressing buttons, using these controls make it simpler to change volume levels and switch tracks on-the-go.

To ensure durable wearability of these headphones;

  • Avoid using them under inclement conditions where moisture can permeate their internal mechanisms.
  • Keep your headphones clean by wiping them down after use with soft cloths without immersing them fully into water/volatile solvents (alcohol).
  • Utilize hard covers provided with some models while travelling with your headsets.

Your headphones may have a longer battery life than your relationship, but at least you can charge them up again.

Battery Life and Charging Time

To optimize the performance of Active Noise Cancelling Headphones, it is vital to understand their Battery Life and Charging Capability. Below is a table with relevant details you need to know.


The BI column represents the Battery Life, which can last up to 24 hours on average. The CP column signifies the Charging Period required in hours for a full recharge. Lastly, the AC column represents its charging port compatibility that conforms with Type-C USB connections. These headphones come with rapid charging capabilities and long-lasting batteries, saving you the hassle of frequent charges. Unique features like automatic pause/resume when taken off or put on are factors you ought to consider before making a purchase decision. To enjoy optimal battery life and charging benefits, it’s advisable to discharge the battery periodically rather than frequently topping up. Furthermore, avoid overcharging since this may affect your battery’s lifespan; it might even lead to a battery outbreak that can cause harm. Therefore, get yourself these headphones that guarantee long battery life and good charging time instead of regular recharging and fading sound quality while enjoying your music or calls peacefully. Your active noise cancelling headphones are compatible with everything except your annoying co-worker’s constant chatter.

Compatibility with Various Devices

Active noise cancelling headphones are compatible with a wide range of devices, allowing for a seamless listening experience. These headphones can be easily connected to smartphones, tablets, laptops, and other devices via Bluetooth or wired connections. They can also be used with in-flight entertainment systems on airplanes and gaming consoles.

One of the key benefits of the compatibility feature is that it allows users to switch between different devices without any hassle. For instance, if you are using your headphones with your phone and receive a call, you can easily switch to your laptop without interrupting the call. On some models of active noise cancelling headphones, pairing multiple devices at once is also possible.

In addition to common devices like smartphones and laptops, these headphones can also work with smart home appliances such as Amazon Echo or Google Home. This means that users can enjoy their music and podcasts while working around the house or controlling their home systems.

Using active noise cancelling headphones not only blocks out unwanted external sounds but also enables users to enjoy them on nearly all technological applications today. Don’t miss out on having the best quality sound experience by acquiring an amazing pair of active noise-cancelling headphones today!
Block out the world with these headphones, unless someone’s talking about how great their non-active noise cancelling headphones are.

To explore popular brands of active noise cancelling headphones, the solution is to dive into the market leaders. Bose QuietComfort, Sony WH-1000XM, and Sennheiser Momentum are three of the most renowned noise cancelling headphones in the world. In the following sub-sections, we will briefly discuss the features of these headphones.

Bose QuietComfort

The popular noise-cancelling headphones by Bose, known for their QuietComfort range, are a top choice for audiophiles. These headphones have been designed to block out external noise effectively while producing high-quality audio.

A table showcasing the different Bose QuietComfort models and their specifications would be beneficial. The table may include columns like Model Name, Noise Cancellation Level (dB), Battery Life (hours), Weight (grams), and Price in USD.

Notably, the Bose QuietComfort range features advanced noise-cancellation technology that automatically adapts to the listener’s surroundings. This allows for uninterrupted audio performance regardless of location.

The history of these headphones dates back to 2000 when Bose introduced its flagship model, the QuietComfort NC-1. Since then, the brand has continuously improved its noise-cancelling technology and released new models such as the QC35 II and the QC Earbuds, which boast superior sound quality and comfort.

In summary, if you’re looking for high-quality noise-cancelling headphones with exceptional sound quality, consider the offerings from Bose’s QuietComfort range. With decades of expertise behind them, these headphones offer cutting-edge technology that continues to evolve over time.

Sony WH-1000XM – because sometimes silence is truly golden, especially when you’re avoiding someone you don’t want to talk to on public transport.

Sony WH-1000XM

Active noise-cancelling headphones from this well-known brand are the highlight of the series. Sony WH-1000XM boasts dynamic sound quality and top-notch ANC that rivals even the best in the industry, immersing you into your music deeply.

  • Customizable EQ settings allow for personalized audio output.
  • Over 30 hours of battery life on a single charge.
  • Adaptive noise cancelling mode for seamless transitions between environments.
  • Touch controls on cups for easy playback and call management.

To add to its vast features, Sony WH-1000XM encompasses further advanced Digital Sound Enhancement Engine (DSEE) technology that enhances the sound quality further, optimizing high-quality wireless audio on Bluetooth devices. This makes it an ideal choice for travelers, commuters or folks looking for a high-end headphone experience.

Rumor has it that in 2018, Sony WH-1000XM was one of the best-sold models among the premium headphone segment and received rave reviews from users across the globe. The line has since been improved with enhanced features and integration with AI assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.

Block out your noisy coworkers with the Sennheiser Momentum – unless they’re telling you how great your new headphones look, of course.

Sennheiser Momentum

The headphones come with an ergonomic design that is comfortable to wear, even for extended periods.

They include Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity options, USB-C charging, and voice assistant compatibility.

Audio quality is unparalleled with deep bass and crisp high notes producing cinematic sound.

Despite being expensive, the Sennheiser Momentum headphones are worth their price tag for serious audiophiles who value superior sound quality.

The Momentum line has evolved over time with distinctive designs and superior technologies to meet consumer needs. Recently, Sennheiser entered into a partnership with Formlabs to produce custom-made ear tips made possible by 3D printing technology. This will ensure utmost comfort, perfect fit, and excellent audio quality for users.

Moreover, unusual metal accents on the side add a unique touch of luxury to enhance their appeal among consumers. These headphones have been very successful since their inception in 2012 and have acquired high recognition worldwide amongst other audio products.

Choose your perfect pair of active noise cancelling headphones wisely, because blocking out the world doesn’t mean you have to block out quality sound.

How to Choose the Best Active Noise Cancelling Headphones for You

To choose the best active noise-cancelling headphones for you with the sub-sections – Set your budget, Consider your needs, and Test the headphones. The key is to determine what features you need, how much you are willing to spend, and what level of noise cancellation you require. By considering these factors, you can make an informed purchase that meets your specific requirements.

Set Your Budget

To determine an appropriate budget for active noise cancelling headphones, consider the following guidance.

  1. Assess your needs and preferences.
  2. Research the prices of recommended models online and in-store.
  3. Determine a flexible budget range based on the features and quality you desire.
  4. Select a pair within your budget offering quality sound and high performance.

It’s crucial to note that opting for the cheapest option may compromise sound quality.

To ensure no compromises involve lessening Active Noise Cancelling effectiveness, set your budget sensibly.

According to research by Digital Trends, wireless headphones like the Sony WH-1000XM4 use active noise cancelling technology to offer one of the best ANC performances as of 2021.

Avoid the annoyance of hearing your roommate’s 3am Netflix binge with active noise cancelling headphones – because sleep deprivation is not a vibe.

Consider Your Needs

To ensure you make the best purchase decision when it comes to active noise-cancelling headphones, it is important to thoroughly assess your requirements. Taking into account your listening-basis, environment and the level of noise around you is crucial in selecting the most suitable set.

Consider the primary reasons for acquiring noise-cancellation headphones. Is it solely for work or leisure? Do they need to be wireless or wired? Once defined, determine the intended location of use and prevailing noise levels. This vital consideration can help zero-in on suitable ANC technology that works best in your environment.

Understand what extra features are available with the headphone model. Some headphones come equipped with app support that allows you to toggle between ANC modes and adjust equalizer settings. Check if it has a long battery life if buying wireless cans, or preferably how much time does it take while charging along with compatibility too.

Taking all these aspects into account will provide you with a clear picture of what model suits your needs best- be it for work from home or travel purposes.

Don’t miss out on optimal audio-loudspeaker experience due to indecision; take action now by assessing your needs, exploring various options and making an informed purchase judgement!

Put those noise-cancelling headphones to the test by cranking up the volume on your neighbor’s lawn mower and see if you can still hear them.

Test the Headphones

To Assess the Quality of Active Noise Cancelling Headphones:

  • Test the headphones in a quiet environment to hear their sound quality and natural sounds cancellation performance.
  • Wear them for at least 30 minutes to test their comfortability and sweat resistance.
  • Reciprocate to different music genres and test how they adapt to different pitches, tones, and beats.
  • Verify they don’t leak sound into your surroundings by asking someone next to you if they can hear anything from your headphones.
  • If possible, test them in noisy environments like airports or cafes to comprehend the intensity of their noise-cancelling performance.

Extra tip:

Consider reading reliable reviews from independent sources before making the purchasing decision. If you’re wondering what are the best noise cancelling headphones, take the time to research and compare different brands and models to find the right one for your needs.


A friend once splurged on expensive active noise cancelling headphones that claimed sophisticated noise-cancelling technology. During her flight, there was a high-pitched screeching coming from the engines that the headphones couldn’t cancel. She had no option but to remove them during most of her journey. Hence, research well before investing in active noise cancelling headphones.

Get ready to say goodbye to the roar of the outside world and hello to the heavenly sound of silence with your new active noise cancelling headphones.

Conclusion: Active Noise Cancelling Headphones – The Future of Audio Experience.

Active Noise Cancelling (ANC) headphones are the innovative technology that offers an unparalleled audio experience by reducing ambient noise. ANC headphones immerse users in their music or video without interference, providing a peaceful and soothing environment. They use microphones to detect and filter out external sounds in real-time. ANC technology is advancing rapidly, and it’s only a matter of time until they become the norm.

The Future of Audio Experience belongs to Active Noise Cancelling (ANC), which is becoming increasingly popular worldwide due to its widespread application in various industries like aviation, automobiles and hospitality. Its groundbreaking capabilities enhance communication, safety and entertainment. With advancements in Artificial Intelligence (AI), natural language processing (NLP) and semantic analysis techniques, ANC can predict sound changes more effectively by forecasting noise patterns for even higher precision.

ANC headphones are evolving away from just hearing devices into interactive communication devices for daily use. Not only do they help users listen better but also communicate better with other devices. We might see ANC headphones becoming an essential part of smartphones that detects noises from surroundings and helps in intelligently routing calls. Future models may need no physical buttons for intuitive hand gestures as improvements towards touch-free technologies advance.

For an immersive audio experience, we suggest purchasing ANC headphones equipped with Bluetooth-enabled wireless connectivity, as this function ensures smooth transmission of high-quality audio signals across distances efficiently; also having dedicated Noise cancelling Chip like QCC5100 series improves battery life significantly without compromising performance quality.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are active noise cancelling headphones?

How do Beats headphones work? Active noise cancelling headphones are headphones that use technology to reduce or eliminate outside noise, such as traffic or airplane engine noise.

2. How do active noise cancelling headphones work?

Active noise cancelling headphones use microphones to pick up outside noise and then use a special electronic system to create an opposite sound wave that cancels out the outside noise.

3. Are all noise cancelling headphones created equal?

No, not all noise cancelling headphones are created equal. Some perform better at cancelling out noise than others.

4. Can active noise cancelling headphones damage your ears?

No, why do noise cancelling headphones hurt my ears? Active noise cancelling headphones cannot damage your ears. In fact, they may actually help protect your ears by allowing you to listen to music at lower volumes.

5. What are some benefits of using active noise cancelling headphones?

Some benefits of using active noise cancelling headphones include reducing stress, improving concentration, and allowing you to listen to music or other audio content at lower volumes.

6. Are active noise cancelling headphones worth the price?

Whether or not active noise cancelling headphones are worth the price depends on your personal needs and preferences. If you frequently find yourself in noisy environments or need to concentrate, active noise cancelling headphones may be a worthwhile investment.