12 Best headphones that don’t leak Sound, Which one to invest in 2021?


Imagine you go to a nearby café, order a cup of coffee, pick a magazine out of your bag and plug your headset. You’re listening to some good hip music, but after a few seconds you see everyone looking at you. Ever wonder why? 

No. you’re not doing anything weird that’s making people stare at you. It’s your headphones. People can hear what you’re listening to. Isn’t that embarrassing? Rather than it being embarrassing, it feels like invasion of privacy. 

This was a café we’re talking about, imagine it happening at a library, or in a plane? That would be worse, right? So what you basically need is a headphone that doesn’t leak sound, and if you’re looking to buy a headphone, your priority should be to get the best headphones that don’t leak sound.

Headphones that don’t leak sound will save you from the embarrassment and invasion of privacy you can’t see coming right now. Also, it’s worse the other way round as well. You don’t want to get a headphone with sound leakage because you wouldn’t be able to completely eliminate the noisy background that way. Same is the case with ear buds, you want to get ear buds that don’t leak sound.

Here, we have concluded a list of 12 Headphones ( +1, because we had two editor’s favorite) that don’t end up leaking sound. Throughout the review, you’d be helped with setting up your primary needs and then acting upon it. Here it is then, the best headphones that don’t leak sound.

Related: Top 12 Most Durable Wireless Headphones in 2021

12 best headphones that don’t Leak Sound, Let’s dig in!

1. Sony WH 1000XM3 – Our Editor’s choice

Sony WH 1000XM3

Talking about noise-cancelling headphones without mentioning Sony WH 1000XM3 will be wrong. It is one of the best ones available in the market. With amazing features, great battery life and a premium design, Sony WH 1000XM3 tops the chart. 

If you want to go for a headphone that offer supreme level comfort, then this should be your number one choice. XM3 will initially look like XM2, but if you compare the two, you’ll understand the difference. 

The headband in XM2 was metal, and XM3 is premium. That being said, we’ll call this switch a downfall. You’ll see copper highlights, while the previous one had silver ones. The ear-cups are matte, which makes it look X2 better. 

Features and Specifications

Sony has been working on their microphones lately. In XM3 the microphone has been improved a lot. If you’re calling someone, they’ll be able to hear you fine. There’s no need of unplugging your headphones to pick up a call, which makes it more convenient for the user. 

You can permanently turn on the Noise-cancelation mode. This might come as a surprise but with XM3, you can just simply turn on the noise cancelation mode, play nothing and take a nap peacefully. 

The battery life is extraordinary. A 10 minute charge will give you 5 hours of playback time. 5 HOURS!! To charge it a 100%, you might need 3 hours only. When fully charged, the headphones will give a playback time of 30 hours. It is a bit pricey, but this much in $350 feels justified to me. The additional features make it one the best ones out there. 

Pros
  • Supreme comfort
  • Top Notch Noise Cancelation
  • Amazing Battery life.
  • Microphone works great.
Cons
  • Headband is made up of Plastic.

Related: 12 Best Soundbar Under 50 Dollars


2. Sennheiser HD 25 

Sennheiser Pro Audio

It is one the best headphones that don’t leak sound. If you are looking for a headphone that is endorsed and worn by DJs all around the world, then Sennheiser HD 25 should be your number one choice. People call this headphone, the DJs choice. This proves enough, right?

When we say that it’s liked by DJs, remember what exactly their need is? Their need is not just a headset that works great for the studio, but they need something that works great at stage too. 

There’s crowd, large speakers and a lot of music and chatter, so a DJ’s number one requirement is a headphone that can eliminate the background. These work amazing at noise isolation, so you don’t have to worry about sound leakage either. 

Features and Specifications

Sennheiser HD 25 has a 16-22,000 Hz. One more thing you need to be sure about is the weight of the headphones. You don’t want to go for something that is way too heavy on your head. That being said, Sennheiser HD 25 is super lightweight. 

It doesn’t end there. 

The headphone is also very comfortable. It’s basically known as one of the most comfortable headphones available in the market. The comfort is there because of it being lightweight. 

You might feel like they won’t be durable because of it being lightweight, that’s really not the case. They are super durable, we can basically call them tough! With these headsets you don’t have to worry about them getting broken. 

The headphones use a lightweight aluminum voice coil. The audio quality is great and we already know that a DJ loved headphone is surely going to have some badass sound quality, so that’s that!

Pros
  • Can be easily worn extensively.
  • Super lightweight, but durable.
  • Has a frequency range of 16 – 2200 Hz.
Cons
  • The design is not really interesting

3. Audio Technica ATH-M50X 

Audio Technica ATH-M50X 

Audio Technica has a great name in the Audio Industry. It has released good products, but the one that stays the top is the Audio Technica ATH-M50X. They are also DJ loved headphones, but the masses love them equally. It is one the best headphones without sound leakage. 

It offers noise isolation, the extent of which is 36 Decibels. They have cushiony ear-cups, slightly but good. The ear-cups move90 degrees, so you can flatten them around and wear it. 

One drawback is the padding. You after wearing it for a while might want to take them off because of the sweat. They have color options for you to choose between. The options aren’t a lot, but you’ll surely find something you like. 

Features and Specifications

They are portable. So, you can use them in a compact way. Just fold them around, and you’ll be able to carry it easily. So that’s an add-on feature that you should consider going for. 

They come with a really soft pouch. One drawback is that these are plastic so you can’t throw them around. But, to secure them, you can put them in the pouch and you’re good to go. 

The ear-cups are larger than the previous models, so they surely give a better experience. There’s a drawback that comes with it. The padding is a bit stiff, so you might have a slightly hard time moving it around. 

Pros
  • Good design
  • Can isolate the noise
  • Comes with a soft pouch, can be carried easily
  • Compact design.
Cons
  • Can feel stiff a bit
  • Padding causes sweating after sometime of usage.

Related: 10 Best Gaming Headset for Big Heads for 2021


4. MPOW 059 – 

MPOW 059

If you’re looking for something budget friendly, then there’s nothing better than MPOW 059 Wireless headphone. Where the premium ones cost $300, the MPOW 059 carry the price tag of $40 (Available for $33 on Amazon Right now)

What do you expect a $40 headphone to do? Just play music, I guess? It does more than that, so that’s a plus already. The battery life this model possesses is quite incredible. You can play music for about 20 hours, isn’t that great?

The headphones are wireless, so you don’t have to worry about not being able to carry it freely. One major drawback is the fact that they can be a little tight on the ears, so if you’re looking for a running partner in the form of a headphone, this one isn’t ideal. 

Features and Specifications

First things first, they are available in a lot of colors. Though, they are a bit plastic-y looking but what do you expect a $40 headphone to do? It is comfortable, so you don’t have to worry about that. 

When it comes to the budget, it is one of the best headphones that don’t leak sound. Its low frequency extension is at 10 Hz, so it is indeed great. It has got a decent bass. One more thing to consider is the fact that it supports both wired and wireless designs. 

One thing that you should look for in a headphone is its compact design. You can fold the headphone and easily carry it everywhere. This is a major plus. One more thing to mention here is the fact that the material is good, it wouldn’t break unless you smash it hard.

Pros
  • Compact design
  • Color options available
  • Great Price
Cons
  • Plastic-y looking

5. Cowin 37 Wireless Headphones 

Cowin 37 Wireless Headphones 

Good headphones without sound leakage are not always expensive. If you’re looking for more affordable options then Cowin 37 is something to consider. It’s a wireless headphone, so you don’t have to worry about not being able to use the headphones with full potential and ease. 

Users often talk about its strong build. It’s sturdy, and durable. They carry faux leather, hence, are very comfortable. One more thing it has to offer is a built-in mic. That’s a plus. 

The ear-cups are large, so they cover your ears properly, but the head band doesn’t support different head sizes. That’s one thing to check out. They have a glossy finish, so if you’re into that, you’d love the design. 

Features and specifications

So, the Cowin 37 wireless headphones have a kickass battery life, which goes up to 30 hours of playtime. They can make your ears sweat if you’re using them in the gym, but are decently breathable. 

It comes with a pouch, which keeps the product safe. They carry NFC technology, a built in mic for hands-free calling and active noise cancelling technology. You can connect Cowin 37 with iOS and Android both. THAT’S SOMETHING TO APPRECIATE

The battery life is amazing, at least for a $70 headphone. If you charge them for 10 minutes, you can easily play music for an hour. Their bass accuracy is legit amazing. They don’t leak much noise, but can’t 100% block them. It is indeed one of the best wireless headphones without sound leakage available in the market. 

Pros
  • Great for commuting
  • Great Price
  • 30 hour battery life
  • Carries Active noise cancellation Technology
  • Supports Android and iOS both.
  • Durable.
Cons
  • The pouch doesn’t prevent them from breaking.
  • Can get sweaty after sometime.

6. OneOdio A71 

OneOdio A71 

OneOdio is a Hong Kong based company that releases good and affordable Headphones. The headphone literally retails for $30, and to our surprise, it has a lot of goodies to offer. 

This piece is recommended for drummers who want to invest in good noise-isolating headphones. For drummers, over-the-ear version is recommended. These are a good pair of studio headphones as well. 

They will block most of the outside noise. For a $30 headphone, I’d just expect it to work properly and I’ll be sold, but this pair has a lot to offer. They’ll block 80-85% of the background noise, which is a fair amount. 

Features and Specifications

They don’t carry memory foam ear-cups and you might assume that they won’t be comfortable, but to our surprise, the headphones are actually comfortable. They will sit on your ear comfortably, but wouldn’t press onto your ears hard. 

These headphones are plastic-y, so yeah, you have to be careful while carrying them around. The number one feature of these pair is portability. They are extremely portable, you can fold them easily and carry without being scared of them breaking.  

The wire that comes with it is fairly long. 3 meters to be exact. We all know how frustrating the short wire is. I mean what’s the point of owning a headphone if you can’t connect it with the TV, and sit on the sofa comfortably. This pair will let you do it. 

Pros
  • Low Price Tag
  • Can Isolate noise
  • Compact Size/ Portable.
  • Carries a 3 meter long wire.
Cons
  • The headphones are not as sturdy as they should be.

7. Bose QuietComfort 35 II  — PRICEY BUT KICKASS!

Bose QuietComfort 35 II

If you just one to invest in one good headphones, and you’ve got no budget restriction, then we would recommend the ultimate Bose QuietComfort 35 series 2. It’s Wireless, Noise Cancelling and have a battery life of 20 hours. 

They are one of the most comfortable headphones you would have ever put on. They are super lightweight, hold onto your head really well, but are not extremely tight that you head ends up hurting. That’s what you need, man! The right amount of comfort. 

They seal your ear, so you might get a little sweaty on the ears. So, if you’re looking forward to use it while performing intense workouts, these shouldn’t be your number one choice. 

Features and Specifications

In the box you see a sturdy case, a charging cable, and an audio cable. They are really flexible, so you can throw them in the bag without a second thought about it getting smashed badly. 

If you want to customize the color, that can be done too. Just simply go to the Bose’s website, pay a few extra bucks and get the desired color. One the left ear-cup you will find a button that actives Google Assistant/Alexa or controls between the different noise cancellation modes. 

They are portable, not the best kind of portable, but they do a great job. They can be folded, but their over-ear design is a bit larger. They are super sturdy, the plastic is of good quality, and a few drops wouldn’t do anything to it. Also, the sound quality is amazing!!

Pros
  • Super Lightweight and Comfortable
  • Can be customized in different colors.
  • Battery life is 20 hours.
  • Comes with a dedicated button for google assistant.
Cons
  • It’s on the pricier side.

Headphones: 10 Best Headphones that look like Earplugs in 2021


8. Sony MDR7506

Sony MDR7506 are in the market since quite a while. If you’re considering to buy a good pair of headphones, you might have heard people recommend this one. These pair are super comfortable, carry a great price tag and offer a lot of goodies. 

They are durable. Some people say that they work great for a few years only, but $90 for a few years? We don’t mind. One good thing is the fact that you can replace the pads which cost $10 only. This will make them more durable. 

They are a full-size headphones but weigh only 8 ounce which is obviously lighter than what a full-size pair weigh. They are breathable, but long sessions of listening to music might end up making your ears sweat. 

Features and Specifications

They are portable, not the best kind of portable, but gets the job done. They do get folded into being more compact, but they are already not too huge for an over-ear headphone. 

The bass is amazing, and so is its mid-range. The cable it comes with is really long, but not removable. If you want to plug the headphones to a TV, and Netflix, these will do great. 

These are amazing studio headphones. You’ll get strong bass, not pushy, but great. Noise isolation is decent. It doesn’t support various head sizes, but if you’ve got a comparatively big head, these would work great!

Pros
  • Good price
  • Great Sound, amazing bass.
  • Comes with a long cable. Great for Studio Work.
  • Lightweight and comfortable.
Cons
  • Cable can’t be detached.

9. Sennheiser HD 280PRO

Sennheiser HD 280PRO

These headphones were released in 2003, and are meant to be used for studios. You already know that if a headphone is called a ‘studio headphone’, they are and should be breathable. 

You might want to wear headphones for really long hours. Here’s where Sennheiser HD 280PRO does the best. You can wear it for long listening sessions, with utmost comfort. Your ears wouldn’t end up sweating or getting warm. 

They are fairly good at isolation noise. If you’re at a café, people might not be able to hear what you’re listening to, but they might bleed a bit when you’d be recording something in the studio. 

Features and Specifications

They don’t distort much. Even at higher levels, these pair can handle deep bass quite easily. These headphones are great for mixing, recording sounds and can be used by sound engineers. 

One drawback is the fact that the cable it offers is not-detachable, that might set people off. The ear-pads are large, will easily fit around the ears. They are sturdy, so you don’t have to be SUPER careful while using them. Like a few drops wouldn’t hurt much. 

It has great bass. It isolates the noise really well. They are a bit heavy, so people with larger heads might mind them after a few hours of usage. The headphones have a synthetic leather headband which makes the experience quite comfortable. 

Pros
  • Amazing with noise isolation
  • Comfortable and sturdy.
  • Great Design.
  • Good for Studio related work, and sound engineers.
Cons
  • Padding can get tight on larger heads.

10. AKG Pro Audio K92

AKG Pro Audio K92

The AKG Pro Audio K92 offers a Closed-back design, because of which the sound leakage is minimal to none. The headband is stretchable, unlike many which end up pushing onto the head. They are super lightweight and the company has really worked on providing ear comfort. (If that’s even a thing). 

They are not pricey, so you’re getting a good deal if we compare the price with the features offered. These can be used in Studios and outside studios, like when you just want to Netflix and Chill. 

The gold accents the product carries doesn’t make it another pair of dull-designed headphones. It looks great, and it makes you feel great. In case you’re wondering, the gold isn’t tingling-your-eyes-hard gold, rather it’s the subtle kind of gold. 

Features and Specifications

The headband is adjustable, so it works great for every size of head. And also, you can easily wear them around your neck too, because sometimes headphones are so tight that they literally hug onto your neck, HARD! 

The cable is just plugged to the left side of the ear-cup, which means the wires wouldn’t get tangled together. The cable is un-detachable which kind of sets us off, because it’s 2021, and this is the least you expect from a headphone today.

The design will not end up making your ears hurt. You can listen to music for long hours without ending up sweating. Its bass response is great, and they can be used as gaming headphones as well. Infect, they make a good pair of gaming headphones. 

Pros
  • Comfortable pair of headphones.
  • They have an adjustable headband.
  • Fair price.
Cons
  • The cable is not detachable.

11. Bowers and Wilkins PX7

Bowers and Wilkins PX7

Bowers and Wilkins PX7 is a pricey pair of headphones, but if you want to get some really kickass headphones, then these are some really good headphones to invest in. The B&W PX7 are over ear headphones, but they are not heavy which most of the over-ear headphones end up being. 

Their battery life is something that wouldn’t disappoint anyone. You can play music for 30 hours continuously after fully charging these headphones. The headphones look and feel premium. If ‘handsome’ is the right adjective to use for really stylish headphones, we’d want to call them that! 

These are big headphones, but can be flat folded, making it to be carried around pretty easily. They aren’t just noise cancelling wireless headphones, they are much more superior to that. No matter what you’re listening to, these provide the best listening experience. 

Features and Specifications

The bass is great. You can use these in wired mode as well, so these work amazing for studio related work too. These are available in grey and silver colors. The earcups carry mottled plastic which looks great. 

The left ear-cup has a button that controls noise cancellation. There are 3 modes; low, medium and high. You can switch between the modes through that button. Low will help you with ignoring the chatter in the background, while high will make your train rides peaceful. You can completely block the noise by keeping noise cancellation at high. 

The previous version called PX was a great deal too, but PX7 is comes with advancement. In PX7, they have used microfiber in the ear-cups and arms, which make the headphones feel more comfortable than the PX. 

Pros
  • Premium Design
  • Can switch between noise cancellation modes.
  • Cups and arms carry microfiber.
  • Great battery life. (30 hours)
Cons
  • Pricey

12. Audeze LCD-1 

Audeze LCD-1 

If you are not restricted with budget, Audeze LCD-1 will be a great headphone to consider buying. The company has been making products for audio engineers, DJs, drummers, basically musicians. They’re premium quality headphones, which work great for studios as well. 

The case it comes with is equally stylish, and make commute safer. The sound quality is exceptional and clear, so weather you’re using them to play GTA, or are playing something from Spotify, Youtube, Apple Music, it’ll work amazing regardless of the platform. 

If you’re someone who wants to feel every beat, analyze and experience it, then this is for you. You’ll hear clear music, that’s a promise. It cancels the noise completely, but does leak a fair amount of sound. That being said, if you want to completely ignore whatever is going on in your background, Audeze are for you. 

Features and Specifications 

They have worked closely to make these pair one the best sounding headphones. The ear-cups are padded really well, are super lightweight, and weigh 250 grams only. For you to enjoy long sessions with no discomfort, they have used plenty of padding. 

The insides carry Planar Magnetic Drivers, which deliver voice with utmost clarity. The frequency range is extra-ordinary. They deliver frequencies from 10 Hz to 50 KHz. You can fold them to their compact size. They also come with a USB charger. 

It doesn’t come with additional features like controlling noise cancellation modes, or having the choice to use them wired, or wireless. Looking at the price, a few additional features would have been great. Nonetheless, there are a lot positives to look at. 

Pros
  • Extraordinary frequency range
  • Lightweight – 250 grams only.
  • Clear sound
  • Insides carry Planar Magnetic Drivers.
Cons
  • Pricey
  • Doesn’t carry additional features.

13. Status CB-1

Status Audio CB-1

These pair costs $70, but when you’d look at the design, you’d expect them to be $150. That’s how solid, and classy the design looks. Champagne-gold colored circles, makes the ear-cups look prominent, also adds a bit classiness to the design. These rings are metallic. 

This headphone works great for recording voice overs, dubbing, basically everything. What’s really annoying is to fix the tackled wire. To avoid this, the wire is plugged to one cup only. This makes the headphones more portable as well.

The headband gives a luxurious feel. The ear-cups are padded really well. Overall, the headphones are really lightweight and doesn’t hold onto your head tight – as if you’re having a migraine. So, for long listening sessions, these will work great. 

Features and Specifications

The cable is plugged to the left ear-cup. The box carries two cables. They’re removable. One of the cable is a coiled one, while the other one a long straight cable. Long straight cable works great, if the device you’re plugging them into is placed at a distance. TV, for example. 

It carries a sound stage design which helps improving the recording experience. Its over-the-ear design helps noise cancelation and improving the recording process. The headband hugs your head well. It wouldn’t be super tight, but it wouldn’t fall either. 

They don’t come with extra ear-cups, and the cables don’t have a mic either. So you’d want to unplug your headphones to pick up the call. So, this wouldn’t be ideal for gaming. The sound quality is great. It’s a blend of great sound quality and utmost comfort. 

Pros
  • Fairly priced.
  • Works well for long listening sessions.
  • Comes with Two removable cables.
Cons
  • The cables don’t have a mic.
  • They’re not ideal for gaming.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I stop my headphones from Leaking sound?

There are a few things that can be done. The first thing you should be doing before investing in a headphone, is to get noise isolating headphones. If not that, add a pair of ear-muffs to your headphones. Adding another layer will decrease the sound leakage. If you’re on the bus right now, and need an immediate solution, then just lower down the volume. It is not a long term solution, but will get the job done. 

Why do headphones leak sound?

There are certain items that basically block the sound to leak. Such as the ear-cups and ear-pads. When air vibrations penetrate through these items, it causes sound to leak. What you basically need are two things. The first being others not able to hear what you’re listening to, and the second being you not being able to hear others. 

Headphones without sound leak

Too great headphones that don’t cause sound leak are Sennheiser HD 25 and Audio Technica ATH-M50X. If you don’t have budget restriction, then go for B&W PX7, or Audeze LCD-1. If price is a concern, go for Bose QuietComfort II.

Does Sony WH-1000XM3 leak sound?

If you’re keeping your volume at 80%, sound will leak. Below 80, you wouldn’t hear the sound leak. Nonetheless, turning the volume up all the way is dangerous, so if you keep it on 80 or below that, you’re good to go. 

What headphones block out sound?

A lot of noise-isolating headphones are available in the market. You have different options, according to different budget. Audio Technica ATH-M50X is one of the best noise-isolating headphones available in the market. A few good options include Sennheiser HD 25,  Cowin 37, MPOW 059, and B&w PX7. 

Can you still hear with noise cancelling headphones?

Noise cancelling block ambient noise, which basically means background noise. If you’re wondering if you can hear the background noise with the headphones plugged in, you might be able to hear loud sounds, but not the chatter.

Are the Sony 1000XM3 worth it?

Sony 1000XM3 is pricey, but worth it. It costs $350, but the features are worth it. They are really comfortable. The mic is great, so you can call easily. They are over-ear and works great for cancelling the ambient noise. 

Is noise cancelling safe?

Noise canceling headphones are safe. Mobile Phones emit radiation that are harmful, that noise canceling headphones don’t. If you work at the airport, or maybe at someplace where you can hair a lot of planes, trains, and loud noises, using a noise canceling headphones will actually protect your hearing. 

Does sound leak from Airpods?

Airpods do leak sound, but the leakage is very minimal. According to some people, it’s better to have minimal sound leakage, because you don’t want to either block everything that’s happening around you. So, for example, if you’re on the road, you should be able to hear a car honking at you. Nonetheless, sound leakage is very minimal so you’d be able to ignore it. 

Must Read: 10 Best Surround Sound Headphones for Movies | Reviews | Jan 2021

Takeaway

Sound leakage can make you feel uncomfortable. You don’t want others to hear what you’re listening to, sometimes you might be listening to something really personal. To avoid that, you need a noise canceling headphone. 

One good headphone to invest in is the Audio Technica ATH M50X. The larger ear-cups help in leaking less sound. The extent of noise isolation is 36 decibels. You can fold them to get them into more compact size. 

That being said, we’d recommend you to understand your needs first. See, if you really want something with cool additional features or your primary need is to just get a noise-isolating headphone with good sound quality. 

If you’re an aspiring DJ, then your need will be to go for something like Sennheiser, because it’s literally what people call ‘a DJ headset.’ It’s comfortable and the noise-cancelation is on point. 

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Usman Mani
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Usman Mani

Md. Usman is a tech enthusiast with an experience of over 10 years in the field of affiliated marketing. He used both of his passions to come up with engaging content that's authentic, compelling and helps users buy the best products online.

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