Best Cheap Airpods Alternatives

Padear Mini X3 Handsfree Auto Connect Bluetooth Earbuds Earphones Headphones

Looking for true wireless bluetooth earbuds on a budget?

Apple AirPods aren’t the only bluetooth wireless headphone that is stream lined and convenient.

Initially the airpods looked sort of odd – but they’ve really caught on.

Why do people love AirPods so much?

The fact that they are wire-free and that they are so easy to use has really revolutionized the earbud and headphone market.

They have excellent sound quality also.

But, they are very expensive.

Here are some cheaper alternatives to Apples Airpods.

These are also great if you have an Android phone – Airpods don’t work with Android.

Some of these are much cheaper and more affordable, and some are better in certain qualities (like sound quality).

We’re going to look at the best cheap airpod clones.

These inexpensive choices for those on a budget are gleaned from reddit and amazon.

Just remember, these are cheaper than the Apple Airpods for a reason – they are not going to be as nice.

These are not the cheapest options – but if you check the reviews on the really cheap headphones – you’ll see the headphones that are less than $45 or so have a LOT of problems – they stop working, they don’t charge, they don’t pair easily, etc.

Apple Airpods vs Bluetooth Earbuds

Airpods have a fancy name, but really there are a few key criteria that makes them what they are.

First of all they are earbuds – which means a headphone in a form factor that fits directly in your ear.

They are wireless and use Bluetooth technology. They pair with a variety of devices including iPhones and Apple Laptops.

They have easy to use controls – a variety of functions can be performed by simply tapping on the earbuds.

They have very good battery life – and come with a convenient carrying case which also functions as a charger.

We also recommend you find a pair with water resistance. Because these earbuds can fall out of your ears – or because you may be perspiring excessively – it is best to get water resistant ear buds.

To be clear – water resistant doesn’t mean waterproof. The IPX7 standard means you can immerse the item briefly in up to 3 feet of water and they should be undamaged.

IPX6 and below won’t be helpful for water immersion – so be careful not to drop them in the water.

The IPX6 rating does mean you should be OK with rain, sweatproof, etc.

Comfort is also important – they earbuds should stay in place and be comfortable for long wear.

This aspect of the earbud can be an individual thing – you may prefer one style over another strictly based on comfort.

Lastly, for earbuds they have very good sound quality.

Now that we understand what makes a good competitor to the airpod let’s look at some cheaper alternatives.

Passive Noise Cancellation vs Active Noise Cancellation
Before you buy earbuds – make sure you understand the difference between passive and active noise cancellation. A lot of vendors describe their product as “noise canceling” – but there is a difference between passive, active, and noise-canceling mics.

Our Top Pick For Airpod Alternative – the Anker Liberty Air Wireless Earphone

Let’s start with the winner of this competition – this is our TOP PICK.

The Soundcore Anker Liberty Air (Buy on Amazon) are not the cheapest option – but they are one of the best.

Anker’s Soundcore line is a brand that is known for making quality accessories – at a significantly cheaper price point.

Soundcore Anker Liberty Air True-Wireless Earphones with Charging Case, Bluetooth 5, 20 Hour Battery Life, Touch Control Earbuds, Graphene Enhanced Sound, Noise-Cancelling Microphones, and Secure Fit

Want the airpod look but have an Android phone?

Then this is one of your best options.

These also pack a lot of features into them – noise canceling mic, touch control, and more.

What can you do with the touch control?

Play/Pause, Answer Call/End Call, Next Track, Previous Track, and bring up the Voice Assistant.

You do these things by either one or two touches on the earbuds. For example, touch the right earbud for “next track” and the left earbud for “previous track”.

And they have a charging case – just like the airpods.

You can get about 5 hours of use from these earbuds, and up to 20 hours total from the charge case.

And, it’s a nice charging case – it holds the earbuds in magnetically , and closes with a magnet as well.

Anker has done their homework and tried to re-create the Air Pod experience as closely as possible (without infringing on Apple’s design).

And perhaps best of all – the Liberty Air come with a complete set of ear tips.

These fit snugly within your ear canal – to give you better sound isolation (“passive noise cancellation”).

But – it also means these have significantly better sound (especially bass) as compared to the Airpods.

This is a big plus for music lovers.

Don’t like the tight fit and feel of the ear tips? Take them off!

When used without the ear tips you’ll still get good sound – just without the bass.

Soundcore Anker Liberty Air True-Wireless Earphones with Charging Case, Bluetooth 5, 20 Hour Battery Life, Touch Control Earbuds, Graphene Enhanced Sound, Noise-Cancelling Microphones, and Secure Fit
  • Graphene-Enhanced Sound: Pioneering audio technology delivers highly accurate sound with superior clarity.
  • Crystal-Clear Calls: Listen and talk through both earpieces. Noise-cancelling microphones eliminate background noise and enhance voice pick-up for flawless communication.
  • Leading Playtime: Get up to 5 hours of music from a single charge. The charging case takes the total playtime to 20 hours.
  • Integrated Touch Control: Use the earbuds to answer calls and play, pause, and skip music on-the-go.
  • What You Get: Liberty Air true-wireless earphones, charging case, XS/S/M/L/XL EarTips, 60 cm micro USB cable, user manual, 18-month warranty, and friendly customer service

Don’t want the airpod-like aesthetic of all white color?

Good news – unlike the Airpod – the Liberty Air comes in black also (Buy on Amazon).

Soundcore Anker Liberty Air True-Wireless Earphones with Charging Case, Bluetooth 5, 20 Hour Battery Life, Touch Control Earbuds, Graphene Enhanced Sound, Noise-Cancelling Microphones (Black)

Still need convincing?

We have a full review of the Anker Soundcore Liberty Air vs Apple AirPods.

Let’s look at some other contenders for best cheap airpod alternative.

More Cheap Alternatives to Airpods

Don’t care whether the earbuds look like Air Pods , but want the quality and cost effectiveness of an Anker product?

Take a look at this model:

2019 Upgraded, Anker Soundcore Liberty Neo True Wireless Earbuds, Pumping Bass, IPX7 Waterproof, Secure Fit, Bluetooth 5 Headphones, Stereo Calls, Noise Isolation, One Step Pairing, Sports, Work Out
  • Expertly Tuned Graphene Drivers: As graphene's earliest pioneers, we have used our experience to create a new driver for Liberty Neo wireless earbuds that takes full advantage of the material's remarkable properties. 100 times harder than steel and 35% lighter than traditional driver diaphragms, it oscillates with extreme precision to give your music a wider soundstage with exceptional accuracy and crystal-clear clarity across the entire frequency range.
  • Bass you can feel: our exclusive BASSUP technology analyzes your Audio's low frequencies in real-time and instantly increases the Bass by up to 43%. stop simply listening to your music, and start really feeling it.
  • Unbreakable Connectivity: An external antenna combines with Bluetooth 5. 0 to create an almost unbreakable link between your wireless earbuds and your device-even in busy places. And they feature
  • IPX7 protection: sweat guard protection creates a watertight barrier for the wireless earbuds against rain and sweat. It even resists water from the tap when you're washing away the sweat after a hardcore workout.
  • Rock-Solid Fit: Sound core's proprietary Grip Fit technology enables wireless earbuds to sit securely and comfortably in your ears-simply slide in and twist to lock. Take on an intense workout or navigate city streets knowing your earbuds will stay firmly in place.

The Anker Soundcore Liberty Neo Earbud (Buy on Amazon) are an especially lightweight design.

Each earbud is only .2 oz in weight – you can see they are smaller (as compared to the Liberty Air model.)

The downside to this is you don’t get as much play time – there is simply less battery capacity on these.

Anker Soundcore Liberty Neo Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds, Graphene Drivers, Pumping Bass, Secure Fit, Bluetooth 5.0 Headphones, Stereo Calls, Noise Canceling, Easy Pairing, Sweatproof, Sports, Work Out

But, you will get about 3.5 hours of playtime, and another 9 hours with the charging case.

These are also fully sweat proof – so they’d be great for a workout or gym option.

Anker Soundcore Liberty Neo Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds, Graphene Drivers, Pumping Bass, Secure Fit, Bluetooth 5.0 Headphones, Stereo Calls, Noise Canceling, Easy Pairing, Sweatproof, Sports, Work Out

Best of all, they retail for less than $50.

Let’s look at some more options.

Wireless Earbuds, TaoTronics Bluetooth 5.0 Headphones True Wireless Ear Buds IPX7 Waterproof Dual Built-in Mic Earphones with 3350mAh Charging Case for 120H Extended Playtime
  • Extended playtime: true wireless ear buds that last over 3 hours on a full charge; 3350mAh case can recharge the ear buds up to 40 times to give you 120H of extra playtime, doubles as a power bank
  • User-friendly: remove ear buds from the charging Pod to auto turn on and connect to your last Device, Disconnects when returned; One touch control for streamlined user interface
  • Uninterrupted enjoyment: Bluetooth 5. 0 for no signal loss or music dropouts to retain high quality audio within 10M/ 33ft operational range; straightforward to pair with any Device
  • For all occasions: with a built-in mica in each ear bud, you can utilize both single/Twin mode; use a single ear bud for working or use the pair to enjoy music alone or Share with a loved one
  • Durable & Water-Resistant: IPX7 waterproof build that keeps up with you during strenuous workouts, lightweight And compact construction to survive every aspect of daily life

The TaoTronics Bluetooth Ear Buds (Buy on Amazon) are very similar to the Libery Neo – and slightly cheaper.

Sale
NENRENT S570+ Bluetooth Earbud, Smallest Mini Invisible V4.1 Wireless Bluetooth Earpiece Headset Headphone Earphone with 400mAh Charging Case Dock for iPhone iPad Samsung Galaxy LG HTC Black (1 Piece)
  • Ergonomics Design: The NENRENT S570+ Earbud is designed according to ergonomics and the S570+ is smallest bluetooth Earbud in currently, Fits either ear, wear the bud on right ear for better call clarity
  • Bluetooth issc V4.1 Version:Supports Multipoint Technology Can connect to two different devices in 10 meters range simultaneously. which makes it fit perfectly to your ear and comfortable. Guaranteed to be 100% secure & stable during intense exercise such as running, climbing, riding, camping and other active sports even in a rainy day
  • Longest Service Time with Charging Dock:: Built-in high performance rechargeable Lithium-poly 60mAh battery,High capacity battery provides up to 6 hours call time and 4-6hr music playtime at 40-50% volume (adequate for home/office with little noise interference),full charge in around 1-2 hours and up to 130 hours standby time. The portable designed charging dock case built with 400mAh large capacity battery, which can support 3 times fully charging for the wireless earbuds. You can enjoy up to 3
  • Perfect compatible : Clear HD audio for listening to Audiobooks, Podcasts and Netflix, decent for music and calls. The S570++ is compatible with most Bluetooth enabled devices such as iPhone 5/5S/6/6S/7 Plus Series,iPad 2/3/4/Air/Pro Series, Samsung Galaxy S5/S6/S7,Galaxy Note 3/4/5 Series, iPod Nano Series, Laptop&tablets and another Smartphones LG/SONY/HTC etc
  • Support Stream Music/Video/Audio. Its hands-free function would release your hands from answering the call during driving or walking. 1 Year Worry-Free Warranty. 24-hours email contact service is available. Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns. We're standing by to assist you all the time
Bluetooth Earbuds,FOCUSPOWER-F16 Bluetooth 5.0 True Wireless Earbuds with Charging Case, 24H Playtime 3D Stereo Deep Base Audio in-Ear Bluetooth Headphones, Built-in Mic
  • 【TRULY BLUETOOTH V5. 0】: Adopt the latest Bluetooth V5. 0 and CVC noise Canceling technology. Super long effective distance as long as 66 ft., four times longer than other Bluetooth 4. 2 headphones. Make you enjoy the great deep bass as much as possible.
  • 【TRULY STEREO CALLS】: Compared with previous headphones, the F16 support stereo calls. The high sensitive microphones can achieve the truly stereo calls. Steady connection, easy and fast to connect and great compatibility.
  • 【SIMPLE TO OPERATE AND COMFORTABLE TO WEAR】: The touch-control design makes the F16 easy and convenient to operate. Support play, pause, answer/hang up calls, redial, activate Siri and many other functions. Suitable for many kinds of scenes. Ergonomic design makes you never tired to wear.
  • 【SUPER BATTERY LIFE】: Benefit from the progress of the Bluetooth technology, the power consumption can be as low as 8mAH. Double ears music playtime can be as long as 6Hrs and single ear can be 7. 5Hrs. Equipped with 400mAh charging case which can last 24Hrs.
  • 【 AND ACCESSORIES】: Focus power provides 30-day money back and 12-month manufacturer's on the Focuspower-F16. Equipped with: Two Wireless earbuds, three types of silicone ear-tips and ear-hooks (S L M), a charging case, a charging cable, a user-manual, a card and a storage bag.
Sale
PeohZarr Wireless Earbuds Bluetooth Earbuds V5.0 with Charging Case, 3D Stereo Pro Sound, Noise Canceling Earphones with Built-in Mic and MONO Mode, IPX7 Waterproof, Calls Switch Quick Access to Siri
  • INCREDIBLE SOUND QUALITY PeohZarr T40 wireless earbuds deliver an excellent audio experience to you. You'll immediately notice these have a more open, rich sound, with tighter, meatier bass the first time you wear them. You won't feel like you're sacrificing a bit of sound quality in exchange for totally cutting the cord.
  • SOLID WIRELESS PERFORMANCE As the latest generation of PeohZarr wireless earbuds, they have minimal dropouts, which set these wireless Bluetooth earbuds apart from the competition with other Bluetooth earbuds. And they can work seamlessly with almost all Bluetooth devices, like iPhone XS Max, XS, X, 8, 7, 6, Samsung Galaxy S9, S9 Plus, S8, S8 Plus, S7, Note 8, Note 7, Note 5, iPad and etc.
  • AUTO POWER ON/OFF & MONO MODE & CHARGE ON THE GO No more troublesome operations. Just take these Bluetooth wireless earbuds out from the case, they will be automatically powered on and paired. Put them back into the case to power off. Either left or right earbud can work independently, so you can take calls while letting one bud charge. Four hours of battery life per charge puts T40 Bluetooth earbuds among the best on the market, and a charging case adds four extra charges on the go.
  • ERGONOMIC DESIGN & NOISE ISOLATION & IPX8 WATERPROOF RATING Four sets of silicone tips and very ergonomic design ensure a perfect seal in your ears, serving up a comfortable fit with excellent passive noise isolation. The IPX8 waterproof rating means these wireless earphones can resist sweat, water, and rain. Perfect for working out, running and jogging.
  • 2-YEAR WARRANTY Few electronic products dare to promise a 2-year warranty, but we do. That's because these T40 true wireless earbuds are our proudest work, we do have faith in them!
Wireless Earbuds Bluetooth Earbuds V5.0 with Solid Connection and Powerful Sound. Feature 16 Hours Play Time, IPX7 Waterproof, Built-in mic. Easy to Pair Tech. Quick Access to Siri or Bixby.
  • Bluetooth 5.0 Offer seamless connection. These true wireless earbuds are third-generation True wireless earbuds with Bluetooth 5.0 technology. You could take calls and listen to music without worrying about dropouts.
  • Automatically on/off and re-connected. Enables simple wireless pairing with your Bluetooth-enabled device. All you need to do is to flip the case open and bring them close to your compatible device.
  • Sound QUALITY is rich and full. Powerful sound. The 6mm drivers deliver crisp, clear and balanced sound with solid bass. As far as sound goes, the Bluetooth earbuds produce terrific mid-range sound and bright highs.
  • Comfortable and secure fit. Snug design. Adjustable wing and ear tips that come in small, medium and large. No matter how much you move or sweat, these earbuds stay in place and fit securely.
  • Great battery life. 4 hours of battery life per charge puts among the best on the market, and a charging case adds 4 extra charges on the go. Notation: battery life depends on many factors.

Best Airpods Alternative that Looks Like AirPods

Looking for a pair of earbuds that are a dead ringer for the real thing?

You won’t find something that looks exact, but you might find something close.

(Apple likely takes legal action against anyone that makes a direct visual clone of the airpods!)

But, take a look at these.

These don’t look exactly like airpods, but they are a higher quality model.

Anker is a known brand with many quality, but affordable products.

And it’s pretty high quality – for HALF the price of Apple Air Pods.

Soundcore Anker Liberty Air True-Wireless Earphones with Charging Case, Bluetooth 5, 20 Hour Battery Life, Touch Control Earbuds, Graphene Enhanced Sound, Noise-Cancelling Microphones, and Secure Fit
  • Graphene-Enhanced Sound: Pioneering audio technology delivers highly accurate sound with superior clarity.
  • Crystal-Clear Calls: Listen and talk through both earpieces. Noise-cancelling microphones eliminate background noise and enhance voice pick-up for flawless communication.
  • Leading Playtime: Get up to 5 hours of music from a single charge. The charging case takes the total playtime to 20 hours.
  • Integrated Touch Control: Use the earbuds to answer calls and play, pause, and skip music on-the-go.
  • What You Get: Liberty Air true-wireless earphones, charging case, XS/S/M/L/XL EarTips, 60 cm micro USB cable, user manual, 18-month warranty, and friendly customer service

Here’s another one.

Sale
True Wireless Earbuds, Funcl AI Bluetooth 5.0 TWS Headphones, Waterproof Earphones with 3D Stereo AptX Hi-Fi Sound, 24H Playtime, Touch Control, Charging Case and Noise-Cancelling Mic (White)
  • [3D Stereo AptX Hi-Fi Sound] Funcl TWS earbuds are powered by a Qualcomm smart audio chip and offer a truly natural, authentic sound and deep bass performance.
  • [CVC 8.0 Noise Cancellation] Funcl Wireless Bluetooth headphones blocked out 90% of ambient noise, allowing you to talk to friends with superb voice clarity.
  • [24-Hour Playtime & Touch Control] Funcl Wireless Earbuds deliver up to 24 hours of battery life, 6 hours of listening time on a single charge and 3 extra charges from charging case. And each earbud has a touch area that lets you answer calls, control music and trigger Siri, Alexa, Google assistant easily.
  • [One-Step Pairing & Single-ear Mode] Thanks to Bluetooth 5.0, FUNCL AI in-ear headphones with lag-free connections and greater range pair single ear or both faster, making it easy to listening without interruption.
  • [2-year Warranty] Funcl guarantees a 2-year global warranty for the AI True Wireless Earbuds.

Again, it’s close – but not quite.

Best Airpod Alternative for Sound Quality

OK, this option is not cheaper than the Apple Airpods – they are actually more expensive.

But this model is our pick for outstanding sound quality.

Bang and Olufsen is a name that is synonymous with sound quality.

Sale
Bang & Olufsen 1646102 Beoplay E8 2.0 Truly Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds and Charging Case - Limestone, One Size
  • Cord free, truly wireless - be play E8 2. 0 are fitted with Qi wireless charging, making the product truly wireless. E8 2. 0 are splash and dust resistant and sport a subtle, elegant design.
  • Up to 16 hours of playtime with easy recharging on the go - E8 2. 0'S leather carrying case features wireless charging (Qi), USB-C, and holds three full charges.
  • Touch interface gives you controls over music, calls and voice commands - with simple taps on the earphones you can switch between tracks, take calls, and transparency mode and voice commands.
  • Leather case Fitted with wireless charging and a brushed aluminum inlay - with a secure magnetic click, your ear buds stay in place.
  • Earphones- 1 x 1 x 1 inches. Charger-2.8 x 1.8 x 1.3 inches

High End Airpod Alternatives

Not all these options are cheap.

The Kygo Life E7/900 Bluetooth Earbuds (Buy on Amazon) are a great alternative to an Apple product.

Have an Android phone and want a good pair of earbuds?

Or maybe you do have an iPhone but don’t want to buy further into the Apple eco-system/walled garden.

In that case, these are a good choice.

.

Kygo Life E7/900 | Bluetooth Earbuds with Charging Case, IPX7 Waterproof Rating, Built-in Microphone, Autopairing with Comply Foam Tips (White)
  • Discrete and ergonomic design
  • Accessories included for a great fit in all ears
  • Smooth auto pairing where the earbuds connects automatically with each other and the device
  • Multi-function buttons for easy handling tracks, volume and calls
  • Waterproof

Amazon Alex Echo Buds

And coming soon – we’ll have the Echo Buds (Buy on Amazon).

Amazon is diving into the earbud market – and doing it in a big way.

These aren’t out yet – but you can pre-order.

First of all, expect a quality product.

These aren’t cheap – but they are cheaper than Airpods – and will work with iPhone or Android.

Introducing Echo Buds - Wireless earbuds with immersive sound, active noise reduction, and Alexa

They’ll have Bose Active Noise Reduction built in – that’s advanced technology from a proven vendor. Bose makes amazing noise canceling headphones.

It’s a “sealed” ear bud design and comes with 3 options of ear and wing tips to ensure a perfect fit.

They’ll come with a convenient charging case – and you’ll get 5 hours of use on a charge – with a very short 15 minute “quick charge” capability when you need to top up.

Introducing Echo Buds - Wireless earbuds with immersive sound, active noise reduction, and Alexa

And – it’s got Amazon’s Alexa technology built right in – just install the Alexa app on your phone and you can get help from this smart assistant anywhere and anytime.

These are also IPX4 waterproof rated – so they should be good for your workout – or for use out in the real world.

Introducing Echo Buds - Wireless earbuds with immersive sound, active noise reduction, and Alexa
  • Immersive sound - Premium speaker drivers deliver crisp, dynamic audio. Bose Active Noise Reduction Technology and sealed in-ear design limits background noise.
  • Hands-free with Alexa - Echo Buds work with the Alexa app to stream music, play Audible audiobooks, make calls, or get directions-just ask.
  • Access other assistants - Supports access to Siri or Google Assistant from a supported device-just press and hold your earbud.
  • Long-lasting battery - Get up to 5 hrs music playback per charge, up to 2 hrs with a 15-min quick charge, and up to 20 hrs with the charging case.
  • Customizable fit for better sound - 3 sizes of ear tips help form a comfortable in-ear seal for immersive listening.

Check back here in November and we’ll have a full hands-on review of this new earbud.

Apple Air pods Alternatives – In Summary

In summary there are a lot of alternatives to Apple’s airpods.

Some are cheaper, but some work better (for sound quality, etc.)

The things you should look for are sound quality (both for voice calls and music) and how well the microphone works.

Battery life is also an important factor.

But for those on a budget – you can do pretty good.

And we think the Anker Soundcore Liberty Air is the best option for most people.

Soundcore Anker Liberty Air True-Wireless Earphones with Charging Case, Bluetooth 5, 20 Hour Battery Life, Touch Control Earbuds, Graphene Enhanced Sound, Noise-Cancelling Microphones, and Secure Fit

Last update on 2019-10-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

About the author

Tim

I'm an all around computer junkie, interested in many aspects of programming, operating systems, and enterprise IT technologies. I love Mac OS X, Linux, and Windows and more!

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