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You could pay more than $28 for great-sounding over-the-ear headphones — but why?


Anker

Anker’s crushing it in the audio department. Late last year, I found a lot to love in the company’s new true-wireless Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro. And today I’m here to gush over an over-the-ear wireless headphone that just shouldn’t sound this good at this price: The Soundcore Life Q10 for $27.99 when you clip the on-page $7-off coupon and then apply promo code CNETLIFE at checkout. That’s $2 below the last time I raved about it and $7 below the time before that.

The Q10 is a gorgeous set of headphones. Mixing black and red, it looks like a much pricier product — and feels like one, too, with a surprisingly sturdy design and comfy earcups that block a goodly amount of outside noise. The headphones fold (on metal hinges, no less) for easier storage and transport, though unfortunately Anker doesn’t provide a carrying case — my only real complaint.

Anker promises a whopping 60 hours of playtime (something I wasn’t able to test), and up to five hours with just five minutes of charging. That charging takes place via USB-C, though you’ll have to BYO AC adapter if you don’t have a sufficiently powered USB port.

The Q10 is Hi-Res Audio certified, which is a bit odd because that usually refers to audio sources, not gear. But this is not my area of expertise. I’ll just say that I listened to a ton of different music, all streamed from Spotify, and it all sounded terrific. Very good range, nicely balanced overall. I particularly liked the bass-boost button (though not the noisy “normal!” and “bass up!” announcements that happen every time you push it), which added extra oomph without overwhelming the music.

Prefer wired connectivity? Plug the included removable stereo cord into your phone (assuming it has a jack) or tablet.  

I didn’t try making any calls with the Q10 (I don’t like phone conversations where I can’t hear myself talk), so I can’t speak to microphone quality.

The icing on this cake: Anker’s 18-month warranty. That’s better than what you get from name-brand headphones costing considerably more.

If you bought these last time around, hit the comments and share your thoughts. I continue to consider this the best budget over-the-ear headphone deal of 2020 (so far — it’s still early).

Read more: The best headphones for 2020

Originally published last month. Updated to reflect new sale price.


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source: cnet.com

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