With the launch of Apple’s new iPhone 7 comes a couple of changes. One of the main differences is the removal of the headphone jack in order to require headphones to use the lightning port. For anyone focused on style + functionality, this can be difficult because this means new gear, which means spending more money.

Before you freak out, this was bound to happen at some point. Yes, it leads to more sales for Apple because everyone has to buy new headphones or adapters to make their current headsets work.

The thing is, many headphone manufacturers have wireless headphones now that are really affordable, so you don’t even need to buy lightning headphones. But if you do decide to go with lightning headphones, this will allow for BETTER sound quality. And for that reason, I’m all for it.

So you have two choices, go for headphones that have a lightning cable, or wireless headphones, or both.

I’m going to focus primarily on cutting the cord with this article and detail some wireless headphones. As more high quality headphones get released with the lightning cable, I will add them to the list.

There are many different kinds of headphones. Do you want over the ear cans, in-ear isolation, on-ear cans, around the neck wireless, etc? The list goes on. You just have to figure out what you feel comfortable with and understand where you’ll use them.

For instance, in the gym, I use earbud-type headphones (Bose Sport) that don’t have complete in-ear isolation. This means they go slightly in my ear without falling out, but I can still be aware of my surroundings. Many people in the gym would rather block out every noise and prefer full in ear isolation or over the ear, noise-cancelling headphones.

If you work in an office that allows you to wear headphones, you may not want full noise-cancelling and would rather hear if someone is calling your name. But you may not want in-ear isolation and would prefer easy to take on/off on-ear headphones.

My suggestion is, if you can, try these on in store and see what works with you. With the major brands, they will have test models, but for many of the in-ear or smaller sets, it will be difficult to try them.

As much as I am an audiophile, this list would not make any audiophile list! Head to head-fi.org if you are interested in that. This is for people who want a versatile set that can work in many different situations.

That means whether you are:

  • At the gym
  • In the office
  • Student library
  • Commuting
  • Walking
  • Watching movies on your computer
  • Traveling
  • And more

Now on to the list of headphones!

Bose QuietComfort 35 Wireless Headphones, Black


If you travel a lot and need noise cancelling, these are for you. They have the best noise cancelling in its class. You’ll find other headphones with better sound quality, but these are the best when it comes to blocking out noise when traveling. It can be used in environments where you need some quiet too. The sound quality is good enough that you can enjoy all different times of music and audio.

B&O PLAY by Bang & Olufsen Beoplay H8 Wireless On-Ear Headphone with Active Noise Cancelling, Bluetooth 4.2 (Gray Hazel)

This is pricier but I would argue it’s the best all around set on this list. Good noise cancelling, but great audio quality for a wireless set. It covers a wide spectrum of the sound stage. If you can afford it, this is a top pick. It’s also super comfortable to boot.

Sony MDRZX770BT Bluetooth Stereo Headset (Black)

A cheaper wireless over the ear option that doesn’t break the bank. Sony’s cans are always good on the bass side of things if the music you listen to requires that. These can be found on sale for under $99 quite often.

Jaybird X2 Sport Wireless Bluetooth Headphones – Midnight Black

For the active person, this is a great set. Jaybird can be hit or miss when it comes to durability. But as long as you don’t throw them or pull them everywhere you go, they will last. These are in-ears so make sure they fit before you decide to keep them long term.

NuForce BE6i Wireless Bluetooth Headphones with aptX, AAC and Long Battery Life, Grey

These are probably one of the best looking set of in-ears I’ve ever seen. It’s hard to make a decent looking in-ear set in gray or gold, but these look incredible. I love the metal build which makes them more durable and gives them a high quality look. Bonus: these are magnetic and they stick together so they’re easy to store.

Apple Airpods – $159.99

lightning headphones iphone 7

While Apple’s headphone options have never had the best quality, they’ve functioned the best. They work the best with the iPhone and the microphone surprisingly, has always been the best when it comes to working with Apple products. I would like to see how the mic will perform on this, but I imagine it will be great. It’s supposed to block out noise so that your voice is clear.

With these, you won’t have any wireless connectivity issues when it comes to getting them to work. Apple has developed a new chip that will allow it to have a great connection to your iPhone. The sound quality will be pretty good and you won’t have to worry about them breaking easily. You might have to worry about losing them because of their size though!

You should definitely check to see if these will fit. I have trouble getting the current earpods to fix, so I have to get Earhoox

in order to make them fit in my ear. They’re not the best looking option, but it allows me to get the full functionality of the headphones that Apple provides.

Yes, there are cheaper options, but you know what you’re getting with these and that alone might be the worth the price for you. They also look great too!

Apple Beats Solo3 Wireless – $299.99

lightning wireless headphones iphone 7

Its been 3 years since Beats launched new studio wireless headphones as well as some of the rest of their other products. So these are long overdue and very much expected. Like the new Airpods, these are going to be very Apple-centric and work wonderfully because of the new chipset, You won’t have issues connecting and there are obvious benefits to using them with your iPhone.

There is nothing about a new set of Studio Wireless headphones (over the ear), but there are the new Solo 3 which I recommend for on ear cans. If a new Studio Wireless was launching, that would be my pick in this category. It’s very possible that one might launch just in time for the holidays though.

Also, Apple provides an amazing warranty to their Beats line. I had a set of Beats Studio Wireless and they were kind enough to overnight me a replacement unit because of a small issue. And they were purchased before Apple even bought Beats! Apple’s customer service is outstanding when it comes to this and I would gladly purchase their headphones for this reason.

For the price, you will find other headphones with better sound quality, but Apple does a great job of providing an overall experience to their devices. It’s simple to use and well put together.

I was never the biggest fan of Beats. There are just too many better options out there for the same price. It’s why I got rid of my Beats Studio Wireless. But I will definitely give these a try or look out for an updated Studio Wireless with Apple’s new chip and lightning connectors.

Expect an in-depth review from me on these to give you more information on them.

CONCLUSION

With some serious changes to the new iPhone comes the need to make changes to the accessories you’ll use with them. you can always use the inlcuded lightning adapter with the phone to plug in to your current headphones. You will see a sea of lightning compatible headphones released as well as many more wireless versions over the next few months. So go ahead and choose the style that best fits your lifestyle and your needs. After all, headphones aren’t solely about style, but function and comfort as well.

Are you going to get the new iPhone 7? If so, are you going to get new headphones or use what you currently have? Let me know in the comments!

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