13 pairs of headphones walk away with Awards

The headphone market is awash with models of varying shapes, sizes and prices. It can be difficult to know where to start looking, but our list of Award-winners will help you get the best pair for your particular needs.

We've got pocketable in-ears, portable on-ears, headphones more suited to home systems and, for those who want to a cable and hassle-free experience, wireless and noise-cancelling options.

4 impressive pairs of in-ears

Contemplating your first headphone upgrade? Less than £50 will secure you a pair of brilliant Beyerdynamic Byron in-ears. Alternatively, you could jump up a level to the entertaining Klipsch R6i IIs. Both pairs offer sensational levels of sound quality for the money.

If you use a premium portable music player instead of a smartphone, or prefer using in-ears with your high-end home system, then the Shure SE425s and AKG N40s are definitely worth auditioning.

It's déjà vu for the on-ear category

The on-ear category is full of familiar faces and multiple Award-winners. The AKG Y50s and Sennheiser Momentum 2.0s will appeal to those seeking a fully portable pair, while the Grado SR80es and SR325es and Beyerdynamic Amirons sound remarkable when plugged into a home hi-fi system.

A pair of sensational wireless Sonys

For the ultimate in portability and convenience, you'll want to go wireless. Sony's WF-1000X in-ears (and 2017 award-winners) cut the cable entirely, offering excellent sound quality and the added bonus of built-in noise-cancelling. 

Staying with Sony, if you prefer wireless, noise-cancelling headphones with more traditional over-ear styling, then the WH-1000XM3s get our vote. They tick all the boxes for comfort, excellent noise-cancelling and awesome audio.


What Hi-Fi? Awards 2018: Best in-ear headphones

Denon dominates the home cinema amp Awards category

The 14 best speakers of the year scoop Awards - KEF, Dali, Mission and more

Andy Madden

Andy is Deputy Editor of What Hi-Fi? and a consumer electronics journalist with nearly 20 years of experience writing news, reviews and features. Over the years he's also contributed to a number of other outlets, including The Sunday Times, the BBC, Stuff, and BA High Life Magazine. Premium wireless earbuds are his passion but he's also keen on car tech and in-car audio systems and can often be found cruising the countryside testing the latest set-ups. In his spare time Andy is a keen golfer and gamer.