Apple made a decision to remove the charging adapter from the retail package of iPhones this year, a move that has both been welcomed as well as ill-received to a certain extent. However, the charger is not the only accessory to have vanished from the retail package. Apple has also stopped bundling the trusty earpods with its iPhones because the company believes they contribute to electronic waste. Irrespective of how you perceive Apple’s move, there is no going back. Controversial product decisions aside, if you are getting any of the new iPhone 12 models this season, you will certainly find this list of best headphones for the iPhone 12 series really useful.

We’ve rounded up headphones across different price brackets and form factors to help you pick the one that best suits your needs. Let’s get straight into it:

    Apple EarPods

    A trusty companion

    If you miss the trusty EarPods, why bother looking elsewhere? Apple’s very own EarPods with a Lightning connector are not only affordable, they also feature the familiar in-ear design with a dependable inline mic control system and are sufficiently good when it comes to call quality.
    Belkin Lightning headphones

    Better fit, less price

    Belkin’s in-ear headphones with an MFi-certified Lightning connector feature flat tangle-free cables. They have an angular earbud design with soft eartips for better noise isolation. These splash-resistant headphones have a multi-control button to handle calls and music.
    RHA MA650i Earbuds

    For music lovers

    Looking for something that offers comfort and a good music listening experience? The RHA MA650i earbuds are a great choice. They feature 380.1 dynamic drivers to provide a great experience. They ship with a large selection of ear tips of various size, shape, and materials.
    Pioneer Rayz Plus Earphones

    Wireless versatility

    For less than a hundred bucks, the Pioneer Rayz Plus earphones with a Lightning connector offer adaptive noise cancellation that adjusts sound output based on the ambient acoustics. They also respond to Hey Siri voice commands, offer a custom EQ and smart mute feature.
    Beats Flex Earbuds

    Thumping affordability

    Entering the domain of Bluetooth earbuds, the Beats Flex neckband-style earbuds have earned widespread praise for their excellent value. Sporting magnetic earbuds for music pause or play, the Beats offering use Apple’s W1 chip and are said to last up to 12 hours on a single charge.
    Aukey EP N5 earbuds

    ANC on budget

    The Aukey EP-N5 are among the cheapest true wireless earbuds that offer Active Noise Cancellation at almost one-fifth of the price of Apple’s AirPods Pro. Aukey’s IPX5-certified offering can cancel 28dB of ambient noise and can last up to 35 hours on a single charge.
    Edifier TWS NB2 Earbuds

    Best affordable option

    The well-received Edifier TWS NB2 earbuds improve upon the ANC experience offered by Aukey EP N5 by reducing up to 40dB of noise. The Edifier earbuds also offer a smart ear detection tech to control playback and come with a dedicated low-latency gaming mode too.
    Apple AirPods Wireless Case

    From Apple, with love

    Going slightly up the price bracket is Apple’s own AirPods with a wireless charging case. The updated AirPods are known for their great mic quality, the convenient auto-connection feature, and seamless switching between devices. Plus, you also have Siri just a hotword away.
    Beats Powerbeats Pro

    For fitness freaks

    If you are a fitness enthusiast and want something that can offer a good balance of comfort, durability, and sound quality, Beats has you covered with its Powerbeats Pro neckband style earbuds. It offers dedicated audio control on each earbud and comes in multiple colors.
    Jabra Elite 75t

    Luxury on budget

    The Jabra Elite 75t earbuds cost just over ten bucks more than the AirPods, but they offer a lot for that premium. To start, you get Active Noise Cancellation, a more comfortable in-ear design, up to 5.5 hours of battery life with ANC enabled, fast charge support, and great sound quality.
    Apple AirPods Pro

    Right at the top

    If you want to stick with Apple’s in-house solutions for your iPhone 12, the AirPods Pro is your best bet. The biggest advantage is, of course, Active Noise Cancellation. Plus, you also get a comfortable in-ear design, adaptive EQ, sweat resistance, and a useful transparency mode.
    Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2

    Critically acclaimed

    Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 earbuds offer the benefits of Active Noise Cancellation and use 7mm dynamic drivers to deliver an immersive stereo sound effect. They last up to 7 hours on a single charge and offer customizable touch controls.
    Sony XF-1000XM3

    As good as it gets

    Entering the premium class of true wireless earbuds, you get the acclaimed Sony WF-1000XM3 that bring ANC to the table courtesy of Sony’s proprietary HD noise canceling QN1e chip. Aside from offering 24 hours of battery life, they rely on the DSEE HX engine for sound upscaling.
    Bose QuietComfort

    Audiophile comfort

    The Bose QuietComfort line of noise-canceling headphones has made a name for itself, and the new earbuds are building on top of that legacy. Bose’s IPX4-rated earbuds offer 11 levels of noise-canceling, a comfortable design, up to 6 hours of battery life, and sound great too.
    Sony WH-1000XM4

    A class apart

    If you desire over-the-head noise-canceling headphones to fully immerse yourself in music, the Sony WH-1000XM4 offer the best value for the same price that you would spend on the AirPods Pro. The Sony headphones also support multi-device pairing, touch gestures, and voice AI control.

Our picks from best headphones for iPhone 12

If your priority is a pair of headphones that deliver a balanced music output and don’t cost a bomb either, the Beats Flex neckband style Bluetooth earphones are a great choice. The Beats offering comes equipped with Apple’s W1 headphone chip for connectivity and is claimed to last up to 12 hours on a single charge. They also feature magnetic earbuds which can automatically pause or resume music playback. Plus, the Audio Sharing feature allows users to wirelessly share audio with another pair of Beats headphones or AirPods.

However, if you desire a decent pair of true wireless earbuds for your iPhone 12 that won’t burn a hole in your pocket, the Edifier TWS NB2 will serve you just well. Priced at around $70, they offer Active Noise Cancellation, which is one of the biggest reasons for picking them up. They also offer features such as an environment sound monitoring mode, smart wearing detection, and earbud switching.

What if you want the best true wireless earbuds, but don’t dig the design of AirPods or AirPods Pro? Well, the Jabra Elite 75t are currently the talk of the town. They offer Active Noise Cancellation and rely on a 4-mic array for calling. These IP55-rated earbuds are claimed to last up to 5.5 hours on a single charge and will also let you create a custom-tuned music profile tailored for your listening experience. 

I’ve been writing about consumer technology for over three years now, having worked with names such as NDTV and Beebom in the past. Aside from covering the latest news, I’ve reviewed my fair share of devices ranging from smartphones and laptops to smart home devices. I also have interviewed tech execs and appeared as a host in YouTube videos talking about the latest and greatest gadgets out there.
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