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Headphones

The Best Headphones and Earbuds of 2020

22 Jun 2020
Joseph

Seph

amaysim's tech geek

Some people may claim that music sounds better on vinyl, but we can all agree that tunes sound better coming out of bespoke, high-quality headphones, in comparison to the headphones included with your phone.

Buying good headphones or earbuds is an investment - however, with so many options, it can be tough choosing the right headphones when it's time for an upgrade.

To help keep you on the right track and inspire your next headphone purchase, we've put together a quick list of some of the best headphones going around in 2020.

Best noise-cancelling headphones

Bose Headphones

For people who have too much noise in their lives, the best headphones of 2020 are the headphones that block out all external noise.

One of the best options out there this year is the Bose Noise Cancelling 700. Bose has a reputation for high-quality noise-cancelling headphones, and the 700 looks like it won’t disappoint as some of the best over-ear headphones in 2020.

Pros

  • Amazing noise cancellation
  • Integrates seamlessly into calling and delivers high-quality sound in-call
  • Can connect to two devices at once

Cons

  • Compatible Bose app has some issues
  • One of the more expensive headphone options in the market

Best wireless earbuds

While we love the Bose headphones as some of the best over-ear headphones, in-ear earbuds are a different ball game.

While Apple would have you believe the best wireless earphones/earbuds are their AirPods, the truth is that there are a lot of other options that are just as good, if not better.

Our pick for the best Bluetooth earbuds come from Sennheiser. The Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 earbuds are here to tackle the competition and if you prefer in-ear earphones, these might be the earbuds you’ve been looking for.

Pros

  • Phenomenal sound
  • Active noise cancellation
  • Long battery life (up to seven hours)
  • Perform great when making calls and captures your voice surprisingly well

Cons

  • Buds cannot charge wirelessly
  • Might not fit inside everyone’s ears comfortably

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Best gaming headphones

For those that more interested in getting amazing surround-sound with a built-in mic for the ultimate gaming experience, earbuds won’t do the trick.

For gaming, you need something else, something like the HyperX Cloud Revolver Pro Gaming Headset.

These headphones are ideal for gamers, with Dolby Surround 7.1 and advanced audio control box with DSP sound card included. With sound so good you won’t miss a footstep or heartbeat during the action!

Pros

  • Very comfortable
  • The frame is made of steel so that it won’t snap or break like cheaper, plastic models
  • Works with PCs and consoles so that any gamer can use them
  • Ear cups sit securely on your ears to create an immersive sound experience

Cons

  • Microphone arm is not retractable or foldable so you can’t remove it when it’s not in use
  • The metal band can conduct some sound.

Best running headphones

For some, the headphones with the best sound quality will automatically be the best running headphones. But for runners, there are more factors they need to consider than simply sound quality.

The best headphones for running need to be comfortable and secure in the ear so they stay put while you run.

Our pick for the best headphones for runners is the Jaybird Tarah Pro, which also doubles as one of the best health and fitness gadgets on the market. Jaybird specialises in sports-ready sound and the Tarah Pro is one of their most impressive designs.

Pros

  • Impressive 14-hour battery life so you don’t need to recharge them while you’re on the go
  • Waterproof and sweatproof—perfect for getting active
  • Earbuds wirelessly connect to your phone but still sit on a fabric sports cord behind your neck (you’ll never lose the earbuds)
  • In-line volume controls on the cord
  • Easy to use Jaybird app

Cons

  • Some find corded wireless earbuds frustrating or uncomfortable
  • No settings to allow ambient noise

Best music headphones

Choosing the best headphones for music is never easy and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when shopping.

Our pick for the best music headphones is the Sony WH-1000XM3 Wireless Headphones. The promise of the WH-1000MX3 is “Only music. Nothing else.” And put simply they deliver.

Pros

  • Phenomenal sound
  • Light and comfortable body
  • Impressive noise-cancellation
  • Works well as a headset when you need to make calls
  • Charges via a convenient USB-C port
  • Connects wireless via Bluetooth or via the traditional 3.5mm aux port

Cons

  • Ears can get warm inside the padded ear cups
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Pixel 5

Google Pixel 5: Everything we know so far

13 Aug 2020

Fresh on the heels of the Pixel 4A being announced, the hype train for the Google Pixel 5 is now well and truly underway.

After months of speculation about whether the Pixel 5 launch would be pushed back, Google put much of this chatter to rest by providing a sneak peak of the Pixel 5 during the recent launch of the Pixel 4A.


Last years flagship device, the Pixel 4, was a phone full of potential. As we've come to expect from the Pixel series, it featured an incredibly powerful camera, however its average battery life, held it back from being a serious contender for phone of the year.

While the Pixel 4 had its flaws, it was still a really good phone overall, and it will interesting to see how this years model, stacks up against other flagship models from 2020 such as the Samsung Galaxy S20 and Apple's highly anticipated iPhone 12.

With all this said, we wouldn't count Google out from delivering something special and with such a positive early response to the Pixel 4A, perhaps 2020 will prove to be the year of the Pixel.

To help bring you up to speed on what Google has in-store with this years flagship Pixel device, here's everything we know so far about the Pixel 5.

at a glance: rumoured Google Pixel 5 features

  • Expected October release
  • 5G connectivity
  • Android 11
  • New camera features; Adjustable Flash, Motion Blur & Audio Zoom
  • 120Hz refresh rate
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G

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    Expect 5G

    It's widely expected the Pixel 5 will include 5Gconnectivity.

    The feature was all but confirmed in early August with the announcement of the Pixel 4A, where Google teased two new 5G devices, the Pixel 5 and a 5G version of the Pixel 4A, both of which are set to be released during the final quarter of 2020.

    Release Date

    Since the phone’s inception back in 2016, Google has remained incredibly consistent with their release schedule for the flagship Pixel series, with all previous launches taking place in October. This trend is set to continue, after a leak surfaced from a Google affiliated website in France, claiming the Pixel 5 will be available for pre-order from October 8.

    Android 11

    This shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise, since a beta version of Android 11 is already available for public download, however it’s expected the Pixel 5 will be the first device to don the latest Android software straight out the box.

    Some of the expected improvements and features of Android 11 include a new media player widget, easier ways to control smart home devices using your phone, a new power button menu and refinements to the messaging system and conversation bubbles.

    Pixel 5 Render
    Image Credit: Google

    Design & Display

    Last year Google teased images of the Pixel 4 in the months leading up to its official launch. This time round, the only confirmed sighting of the Pixel 5 has been the side image (seen above) which Google teased during the launch of the Pixel 4A.

    Outside of this image, there have been a number of different leaks floating about which have helped paint a picture of what this years phone might look like.

    Like the Pixel 4, it's expected the Pixel 5 will feature an OLED panel, with a matte glass finish on the back and full HD/QHD resolution. According to Front Page Tech who gained access to an early Pixel 5 prototype, a forehead bezel on the front side of the device is also expected to remain.

    In terms of refresh rate, last year we got to enjoy a smooth 90Hz experience with the Pixel 4. However with Samsung (and others) already making the jump to 120Hz and Apple reportedly looking to do the same with the iPhone 12, it will be interesting to see if Google sees this as an important feature upgrade and whether they'll look to roll out a 120Hz refresh rate with the Pixel 5.

    A Mighty Fine Camera

    While earlier leaks suggested the Pixel 5 would include a triple-lens camera on the rear of the device, more recent leaks suggest Google will once again opt for a two camera setup on the back.

    The quality of images with the Pixel 4 were outstanding, so it's not as if this should be a concern. For some though, the added flexibility of a third, wide angle lens, would of been the cherry on top, for a camera that many consider one of the top-tier mobile phone cameras.

    With that said, Google doesn't appear to be standing still, instead opting to fine-tune the Pixel's two-camera setup by adding new features.

    Expected new features include an adjustable camera flash, a new motion blur feature and the introduction of audio zoom, which will allow you to zoom in when recording video to help you capture audio more precisely.

    Long story short, it looks like we're in for a treat with this years camera setup.

    Under The Hood

    In the past, Pixel devices have typically featured the best Qualcomm chip available, which this year would be the Snapdragon 865 Plus. With the Pixel 5, this might not be case, with an inside scoop from 9to5Google suggesting the phone may be shipped with a Snapdragon 765G processor.

    The Snapdragon 765 is more of a mid-range chip, unlike the high-end Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 which powers the latest Samsung phones. This would suggest slightly less processing power than some of its competitors. With that said, the 765 is obviously no slouch and will still pack a solid punch in terms of performance.

    In terms of RAM, while it hasn't been a huge strength of the Pixel series in the past, there should be improvements on this front, with the Pixel 5 set to include 8GB of RAM in comparison to last years 6GB.

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