For anyone who regularly travels by air, active noise cancellation technology in headphones is a boon. This helps to reduce strain on your ears by blocking out the loud hum of the airplane engines, and it also makes it a lot easier to listen to audio through your headphones. Although the technology tends to work best in an airplane cabin, there are plenty of other use cases where it works as well, including on a commuter train or bus, in an office environment, or even at home to block out the hum from your ceiling fan or air conditioner.
Headphones that offer active noise cancellation aren’t typically affordable, and the best performance is priced at a premium. However, we’ve seen some recent launches that offer decent active noise cancellation at more reasonable prices. This feature also isn’t largely restricted to over-ear headphones anymore; we’ve seen some impressive in-ear and true wireless earphones with active noise cancellation recently. Here’s our list of the best active noise cancelling headphones and earphones that you can buy right now, updated in September 2020.