The AirPods craze has been sweeping the nation, but you might wonder: are they worth it? As a long-time user of wired headphones, I was skeptical of the AirPods hype.
But after putting them to the test and examining their features, I’m convinced that they can be an excellent choice for sure music listeners.
- Sound quality
- Comfort and fit
- Connectivity and battery life
- Additional features
We’ll compare AirPods to wired headphones and break down the pros and cons so you can decide which is best for you.
Are Wired Headphones Better Than AirPods?
There are advantages and disadvantages to both wired headphones and AirPods. Ultimately, it’s up to you as an individual listener to make the best choice based on your preferences and needs.
If you’re looking for superior sound quality, comfort, convenience, and reliability, consider investing in a pair of high-end wired headphones. On the other hand, if you’re more interested in features such as ANC, touch controls, and Bluetooth, then AirPods might be the better choice for you.
Read the article to determine which option is best for you by evaluating your needs, preferences, and budget.
- Read more: Can Wired Headphones Cause Cancer?
Wired Headphones Vs. AirPods: Which On Best?
The debate between wired headphones and AirPods has been a hot topic among music lovers and audio enthusiasts. AirPods are Apple’s wireless earphones, while wired headphones plug directly into a device.
Depending on your preferences, there are advantages and disadvantages to each type of headphone. There are many critical differences between the two types of headphones.
1. Sound quality
When it comes to sound quality, wired headphones, and AirPods can both offer great audio experiences. Both types of headphones have advantages, but some key differences make them stand out.
The most significant difference between wired headphones and AirPods is the size of the drivers. Wired headphones generally have more significant drivers than AirPods.
That means they can produce deeper bass tones and more transparent highs. This makes them ideal for listening to music with more detail and dynamic range.
Wired headphones usually have a wider frequency response than AirPods, allowing even more detailed sound. The sound quality is the material used to construct the ear cups or earbuds.
Wired headphones typically use heavier materials such as metal or plastic that help reduce sound leakage and provide better noise isolation.
On the other hand, AirPods are made from lighter materials such as foam or silicone, which don’t provide as much sound isolation but are more comfortable to wear for extended periods.
The type of cable used also affects sound quality. Wired headphones often include thick cables that help reduce interference and provide better signal strength.
This helps create richer audio with less distortion for a truly immersive listening experience.
Overall, when it comes to audio quality, both wired headphones and AirPods can provide great listening experiences depending on your needs.
However, you’re looking for superior sound quality with deep bass tones and a wide frequency range. Consider investing in a pair of high-end wired headphones instead of opting for wireless models like AirPods.
2. Comfort and Fit
When comparing wired headphones and AirPods, comfort and fit are key elements. It’s essential to consider the earbud design and materials used, as these will determine how well the headphones or earbuds stay in position for long periods of listening.
Wired headphones typically feature larger-sized earpieces that fit snuggly in the outer ear, providing a secure grip. This makes them ideal for activities where you don’t want your ears distracted by background noise or movements.
Moreover, most wired headphones use soft foam or leather materials that create a good seal against the outside world, offering better sound quality.
On the other hand, AirPods offer a much smaller size with a lightweight design that can easily fit snugly into your ears without slipping out.
The main drawback is that they may need to provide a more secure fit for active listeners who need something more confident in their ears.
It’s important to remember that when picking between wired headphones and AirPods, comfort and fit should be emphasized when making your choice.
Wired headphones may provide more security and better noise isolation than AirPods. Still, it’s ultimately up to you as an individual listener whether you prefer one over the other based on what suits you best.
3. Connectivity and Battery Life
Wired headphones typically require a physical connection between your device and the headphones. In contrast, wireless headphones use Bluetooth technology (or other radio frequency) to connect.
When connecting wired headphones with a device, the sound quality is usually excellent because there’s no interference from external sources. The connection is generally very reliable since it requires a physical connection.
On the other hand, AirPods may sometimes struggle with maintaining a steady connection due to interference or low battery levels. The type of Bluetooth technology used by AirPods also affects connectivity and battery life.
For example, if you have an older device that uses an older version of Bluetooth (e.g., 1.2), you may experience more frequent disconnections than if your device uses a newer version (e.g., 5).
Device and AirPods’ power management configurations can significantly impact their battery life and performance. Low settings may cause decreased output, so it is important to set them appropriately.
Wired connections are generally more reliable and of higher sound quality than wireless ones, such as Bluetooth signals. Because of their resistance to environmental factors, high-end audio equipment like professional studio monitors and home theater systems are used.
It’s important to consider both wired headphone connections and AirPod connections when deciding what kind of headphones best suits your lifestyle.
4. Additional Features
AirPods and wired headphones offer additional features that can enhance the user experience. But the types and quality of these features can vary depending on the type of headphones.
One key feature offered by AirPods is active noise cancellation (ANC). This technology creates an anti-noise sound wave that cancels out any background noises and allows you to focus on the music or audio you’re listening to.
This is beneficial for users who are in noisy environments or want to block out all outside sounds.
Another feature of AirPods is touch control, which allows you to control your audio by tapping or pressing your AirPods. You can easily adjust the volume, change tracks, answer calls, and more with just a few taps or presses.
On the other hand, wired headphones usually don’t offer ANC or touch controls (with some exceptions). However, many wired headphones still provide excellent sound quality due to their larger speaker size than AirPods and higher sensitivity levels.
Wired headphones also provide more listening stability since they don’t rely on Bluetooth connections like AirPods. As a result, they can offer a more reliable connection with fewer interruptions than wireless options such as AirPods.
It's important to consider the additional features offered by wired headphones and AirPods when deciding which type is best for you. While ANC and touch controls are great features provided by AirPods, wired headphones may be better suited for those who prioritize sound quality and reliability over convenience.
Are Wired Headphones Louder Than Airpods?
Wired headphones are generally considered to be louder than Airpods because of their larger drivers. They have larger drivers, which act as tiny speakers because they have physically more space to allow them to vibrate more air and produce more sound.
This means that wired headphones generally have a higher wattage than Airpods and can therefore produce a louder sound. This is especially true of higher-end wired headphones, which often have 50 millimeters or larger drivers.
On the other hand, AirPods are powered by tiny drivers (11 millimeters) to keep them as portable as possible. Although Airpods may sound good and have a decent soundstage, they can only reach a different loudness level than bigger drivers.
Because of the size difference, wired headphones are usually the go-to choice for people looking for the highest possible volume.
Why Are There No Wired Noise Canceling Headphones and Earbuds?
While designing wired noise-canceling headphones and earbuds is technically possible, the technology is limited in its application. The main issue is that noise-canceling headphones or earbuds rely heavily on digital signal processing (DSP) to counter external sounds.
To use this technology, a digital signal must be transmitted from the audio source to the digital sound processor in the headphones. We cannot do this through a wired connection since no digital signal is transmitted.
Wired headphones require a power source to run noise-canceling electronics. This power source is usually a battery that needs to be recharged.
The small form factor of wired earbuds makes it even more difficult to fit a rechargeable battery inside them while still keeping them comfortable to wear.
For these reasons, most noise-canceling headphones and earbuds on the market are either wireless or feature an analog sound filter to help reduce background noise.
Are Wired Headphones Safer Than Airpods?
Wired headphones are generally considered safer than Airpods in terms of health and safety. This is for a few reasons.
- Because wired headphones generally aren’t used with Bluetooth technology, they don’t emit harmful radiofrequency radiation, which can cause adverse health effects, including an increased risk of developing cancer. This concerns Airpods, which must connect to a device via Bluetooth.
- Wired headphones are considered safer is that they are more difficult to lose. Airpods are small and easy to misplace, whereas wired headphones need to be physically plugged in and are less likely to be lost.
- Wired headphones are often cheaper than Airpods, making them a more affordable option. Cheaper wired headphones may not always be as well-made as more expensive wire-free options and could be unsafe.
Do Wired Headphones Give Off Radiation?
No, wired headphones do not emit any radiation. They require a physical connection to your device, so they don’t rely on wireless technology like Bluetooth or Wi-Fi. There is no radiation emitted from a wired connection.
Are Wired Headphones Better Than Airpods?
It depends on your needs. AirPods are convenient and have features like touch controls and active noise cancellation, which are not available in wired headphones. Wired headphones typically offer better sound quality due to larger drivers, a more reliable connection, and better noise isolation. It ultimately comes down to personal preference and what type of experience you’re looking for.
Do Bluetooth Headsets Emit Higher Levels of Radiation Than Wired Headphones?
Yes, Bluetooth headsets emit higher levels of radiation than wired headphones. This is because they use wireless technology to communicate with devices, whereas wired headphones are usually connected via a physical cable. The higher the Bluetooth version (e.g., 5.0), the lower the radiation output.
Are Airpods Safer Than Wired Headphones?
No, there is no conclusive evidence that AirPods are safer than wired headphones. AirPods use Bluetooth technology, which could hurt health due to radiofrequency radiation. On the other hand, wired headphones don’t use Bluetooth and therefore do not pose the same risk.
Are Airpods and Other Bluetooth Headphones Safe?
Yes, AirPods and other Bluetooth headphones are generally safe to use. Bluetooth has been extensively tested and is regulated by the Federal Communications Commission. It is designed to minimize interference, reduce the risk of interference with other wireless devices, and limit the power output of each device.
However, Bluetooth devices can emit radiofrequency radiation, a form of electromagnetic radiation, from devices like cell phones and wireless headsets. Although research into the effects of radiofrequency radiation has not been conclusive, some studies suggest a potential connection between long-term exposure to radiation and cancer.
It is essential to use caution when using any device emitting radiation, especially for long periods. As a precaution, it is wise to take breaks from using Bluetooth headphones to reduce your potential radiation exposure.
Whether wired headphones or AirPods are better depends on the needs and preferences of the individual consumer. When it comes to sound quality, wired headphones typically offer a more robust and powerful sound with richer bass than AirPods.
They tend to be more adjustable in terms of fit and comfort. On the other hand, AirPods provide superior wireless connectivity and longer battery life than their wired counterparts.
Furthermore, they come equipped with useful features such as Siri integration and automatic pause/play when earbuds are removed or placed back in the ears. Consumers need to weigh all these factors before deciding which headphones provide the most value for money.
James Dimento is a Chief-in-Editor of SoundUnify. He is a headphone enthusiast and creative writer passionate about audio technology. He has three years of experience writing about headphones and sound quality and is responsible for creating reviews and taking care of all administration.