Audio Features

5 Best Budget Earphones Under $30 in 2018

It is undeniable that having a pair of good and quality headphone would change the way you listen to music.  The portability is the golden factor of headphones where you can have a good time to enjoy music anytime and anywhere you go.

We never expect that such a piece of mechanism will bring us into a new level of music experience in our modern days.  We feel relaxed, entertained, and blown away at the moment we put that gizmo in our head.  The invention of noise-canceling headphones even freed us from the annoyance of unwanted noise in our environments. We take advantage of it every time we are on travel by train, on the airplane, or at any moment we need it to isolate ourselves from disturbances.  

With such phenomena, no wonder why the production of headphones including headsets becomes a fad.  In fact, statistics show that headphones and earphones have a market value of 15 billion U.S. dollars in revenue.  So how is that matter?

What matter is that most of us spend money trying to find the best headphone that we feel is something exceptional and sounds great.  But why we should pay for extra bucks if we could spend a lot less with an ideal pair of earphone or earbuds?  Would you believe that an earphone and earbuds could not break in the party?  And for under $30.00, this will change your perspective on how you look at it in this itsy-bitsy tiny little widget.

It’s Black Friday time!  Please stay with me while I walk you through in the park of Amazon and look into the 5 most affordable but good sounding earphones.

#1 BETRON DC950 Earphones

This is one of the sweetest spots of the earphones industry that you can always have the option to choose the very least expensive one and Betron DC950 is probably my number #1 on the list.

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For under $12.00 (without microphone), you can have a pair of earphone with a stylistic design.  It is one of the best design I have seen in this category of budget earphones.  The color combination of its FLAT cable (1.2 meters length) with black on one side and red on the other side is artistic.  Aside from color, I also like the tangle free feature of its cable.  There is no hassle of untieing its cable everytime you want to use it.

With its Deep Bass Ports and 11.55 mm Neodymium driver, it has a frequency response ranging from 20Hz – 20kHz, you can expect with this earphone to deliver a fair to middling bass effect.  Anyway, that is all about the technical side.  Measuring frequency response is a different matter to understand.  I just refer you on headphone.com if you want to learn more.  

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I can never imagine that spending just a few bucks with this earphone, you can still get a carrying pouch on the package.  Thanks for such open-handed generosity.

Though most cheap earphones are built with plastics that justifies its price, the end silver caps of this earphone is made of metal.  Its gold-plated jack end is also a plus that enhances its bass to deliver detailed sound.

Please note that if you want to have a microphone and volume controller, you need to pay for an extra buck which cost $15.00.

You don’t need to worry if you have Apple or Android devices.  This earphone works well either.

The Drawbacks

Since the shape of its earbud in both sides are almost parallel from each other, you might take some time to distinguish easily the left bud from the right bud.  But it is not really a dealbreaker.  It is reversible and still works in case you use it otherwise.

I think, my main concern with this earphone is the earpieces or earbud tips which do not fit snugly on the ear.  It cannot stay in if you keep on moving and keep slipping out if you use it during jogging or work out on the gym.  At any rate, this is not a sports earphone.

I have my recommendation on the list below for sports earphone so please continue reading.

#2 PANASONIC RP-HJE125-K Wired Earbuds 

Do not judge the book by its cover.  That mirrors with this piece of earphone from Panasonic RP-HJE125-K without microphone and volume controller.  This earphone as it looks is nothing remarkable in its appearance because what is appealing is wholly in the inside.

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Though it is available in various colors, which is a good score for personal choice of styling, the design is not something you can wow nor can make you roll in the aisles. So, what is the showpiece?  It is the sound quality.  Let us dig the secret behind.

This earphone labeled as “ErgoFit” sounds true.  It is designed to fit perfectly on ears.  It applies the principles of science in Ergonomics to optimize the suitability of its elliptical-shape earbuds on the ear.  As you notice, this earphone is so small (with 9mm neodymium drivers) but that mini size is the reason why it gets through inside and fit easily.  Furthermore, the buds are accurately angled for left and right ears.  It is not reversible and you can distinguish easily even in the dark which one fits on the right and left ears.

With its adeptness that conforms to our ears, you can precisely notice its ability to passively cancel and block ambient noise.  That is the simple principle of the noise-canceling earphone.  The more it seals around your ear canal, the more it can block and isolate the external noise in your surroundings. In effect, you can hear the music much louder and clearer.  I explained it to you further on my review on noise-canceling headphones.

The stereo audio quality which tonally balanced the crisp highs and deep low notes are its best features.  I can even hear the details of every instrument in the music I played whether it is classical, rock, hip-hop, and rhythm and blues (RnB).  To be honest, I could not really believe that this kind of earphone with such a small size could deliver a decent pump of bass inside.  

I am not really a fan of earphone since it is my presumption that small size earphone does not have the power to provide a pretty good tone of bass.  Just for curiosity, I bought my first earphone – the Xiaomi Piston III  and to my dismay, what I bought is a piece of junk.  Feeling robbed and disappointed, I never thought that I could give a try once more until I found this Panasonic ErgoFit, this changes my mindset. 

This earphone could not blow you away but you will be surprised by the clarity of its audio, vocal and soundstage performance.  Yes, despite its size and looks, this earphone could give you a rightful magnitude of bass for its price.  

This earphone is compatible with smartphones such as Apple, Android, and Blackberry devices.

The Drawbacks

The main issue of this earphone is its thin and long chord or cable which is not made up of silicone materials.  It feels cheap and tangles easily.  Its chord cannot last in the long run of everyday use unless you care enough and take care of it.

#3 MAXROCK Noise Isolating Sleep Earplugs 

There is no better way of feeling refresh in the morning after a good night sleep.  There is no secret.  Good night sleep is a key to a full energize body which let you to wrap-up the whole day labor.  So, what is the point of using earplugs at night?

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If you are troubled of making a better sleep whether it is because of the snoring partner at your side or just a scratch of your Scooby-Doo, well it is a good idea to use an earbud.  You can have the option to buy Macks Earplugs for a value pack but if you want to take advantage of using an earphone not just for sleeping purposes or air travel, Maxrock Sleep Earplugs and Earbuds could be a fine piece of stuff you can have.

What is beneficial from using this pair of earphones is that you can use it intertwined as a sleeping earplug and as an earphone while enjoying music as well.  Specifically, it is made of soft silicone that makes it lightweight and comfortable for long time wearing.  What I most like that captures my interests is its design with double layer ear tips that can fit entirely on ear canals.  Since it has dual ear tips,  it increases the sound isolation and blocks out background noise. By spending a few bucks, this earphone could not only aid you to improve your sleep, but you will also get a decent sound at its price.  Comes with Zipper Carry Case is a bonus of this product.

Please do note that this editor will not be responsible for using this product as an earplug for an extended period of time because it can cause health issues such as earwax blockage and temporary hearing loss.

The Drawbacks

You could not expect a good bass in this too small piece of an earphone.  For an average listening, the sound is not pretty bad at all. 

Persons with large ear canals may also get frustrated for not having a good fit because of the tiny ear tips.  The durability of its materials may not last for a longer use.  Eartips is irreplaceable.

#4 SENSO Bluetooth Wireless Sports Earphones 

Earphones are not created equal.  Each has their own distinctive features.  Most are built for the compliment of sound quality first while some are created just for the seek of sports-minded persons.  Senso Wireless Sports Earphone is one of those you can truly enjoy while doing active sports whether working out on the gym or running on the trails and outdoors.  Though it publicizes as True HD High Fidelity Sound of rock-solid bass and crisp treble, I could fairly say that it is not far from reality but that is not the best feature of this earphone.

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This is a sports earbud and so what we are after is to fulfill its purpose to stay firm on ears without falling out whatsoever.

What I like most on its design are its distinct ear hooks which loop and hold fast around the ears.  These ear hooks provide a good grip of its earbud when inserted on the ear.  Thus, it makes you feel fit and safe on ear all the time.

Other features which are compelling are its tangled free chord.  Since this a Bluetooth earphone, it does not need a long cable.  If you are tired of messing a long cable, it is worth to upgrade wirelessly.  It is the best score of having a Bluetooth earphone, there is no coil-and-twist hassle of the cable all around.  Just for one main point, Bluetooth devices need to be charge frequently which could be a fair side of the cable connections.

Yes, you need to charge this unit to actively use the Bluetooth feature to connect to your phones for up to 30 feet.  In just one charge for 1.5 hours, you can use it anywhere for 8 hours with standby time that lasted up to 240 hours.

It is worth to mention that it has an integrated mic which enables you to answer calls on your phone and do a hands-free calling at the same time.  This is also a certified  IPX7 for a sweatproof protection.

I could not hold on to my sit if I would not tell you its 1-year manufacturer’s warranty and a 30-day no-questions-asked return policy.  Don’t worry, you do not have to be bothered by their customer service, they establish a good customer support for most customer reviews on Amazon.

The hard carrying case is a home run and a great compliment for such a budget price.  Bonus items included are the dual port USB car charger and a 3ft. charging cable for Apple (Lightning connector) and Android (Mini USB connector) devices.

The package also comes with 3 sets of ear tips of different sizes for your best fit.

You cannot ask for more with this piece of earphone!

The Drawbacks

The ear hooks may not fit for everyone, particularly for small ears.  Since every single person had different sizes of ears, you can take at your own risk in trying this product.  Anyway, their customer support is stable and certified for 30 days return guarantee if you are not satisfied at all.

#5 SONY MDRXB50AP Extra Bass Earbud 

If you are a die-hard bass-lover fan, you can’t afford to skip this Sony MDRXB50AP Extra Bass Earbud.  In my personal opinion, we cannot feel the beat of the true nature of music if there is not enough bass that pumps through our ears.  Of course, other musical instruments such as piano, guitar, violin, saxophone and many more are elements of music that stir different emotions.      

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Though bass is the lowest pitch of the musical range, it provides the harmonic and rhythmic support to the other instruments.  In factual, you can actually feel the power of the bass sensed by our sensitive eardrums that goes through our brain and body.

I am not claiming any expertise in the professions of music but what I am talking to is just a personal experience on what I feel about the forcefulness of bass in natural music.  Everyone who really appreciates the liveliness of music in their personal lives could tell you so the same.  You too could also get the drift and hold it.

Needless to say, Sony is not new to the grade of providing extra bass to its line of audio products.  Bass is synonymous to its brand.  And this earphone is one of their product that can give you a satisfying punch of bass in the shell.

Thanks to its Bass Duct Design that sealed tightly on the ear which further makes it a good isolation earphone compared to its others counterparts.  It also features a flat cord that reduces tangle.  A carrying pouch is also included in the package.  It is just a bonus pouch but not that generous as the Senso hard carrying casing does.

It also has an integrated microphone and multi-function control button for a smartphone.  It works with Android and iOS devices.

Like the Panasonic RP-HJE125-K Wired Earbuds, this earphone also has the right angles between the left ear and right ear.  So, there is no hassle to distinguish which one fits on right or left ear.

The Drawbacks

If you can take a closer look at the picture below, you will notice that this is quite a little bit bigger than most earbuds. 

Its multi-function control button only play, pause, and skip the track.  No volume control.

The Bottom Line

It is the most challenging on your part as a consumer to buy a pair of earphone or earbud without having an actual test.  This is the real world of shopping online that most of us merely rely on reviews. 

How can you trust this article?  Despite the number of earphone products out there, what I have listed here is the best earbuds you can buy in just $30.00.

For reasons that these products are on top not solely on my personal experience and opinion but based on customer reviews on Amazon who bought these items.  There is no sweat in choosing one.  

Just please bear in mind that every earphone I enumerated above has qualities and features that may differ from each other.  Always consider your preference before you pick up a cup of tea that well-suited your taste.

One thing for sure, these earphones won’t hurt your purse.  It is not the price alone that makes you a winner but the quality you will get can stand in good stead.

Now you can sit down and enjoy your Black Friday with a real steal.  

About the author

DEL

Del is an affiliate marketer and has a personal interest in web design. His quest is to find remarkable consumer electronic devices and determine its capability and usefulness. Though serious, he is quite funny and curious. Good attitude, fairness, and simplicity are characters that matter to him most.  

21 Comments

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  • Hey. I am a great lover of music and these earphones are superb. Thank you for sharing your choice of the 5 best budget earphones under $30 in 2018.

    I think I love the SENSO Bluetooth Wireless Sports Earphones . At least I can use the earphones without carrying my phone around in my house. It’s beautiful too.

  • Hey there,

    Cheap earphones. A great invention. You can carry them with you without being afraid of losing them, or someone stealing them. You can always buy a new pair. Also great for people who just want a decent pair of earbuds for basic music listening and who don’t care too much about the bass or the quality of the sound – provided that is is decent.

    I’d go for the Bluetooth pair and the Noise Isolation Earplugs. I think they are great for work, and noisy environments.

    Thanks for letting us know!

    Marios

  • I have been looking to buy a set of ear phones/plugs, because it will make the time go faster at the gym if I listen to music while I ride the bicycle. 

    I also need ear plugs for bed time, as my husband likes to turn the television on in the early hours of the morning and it always wakes me up. I actually need things to cover my eyes as well.

    I like the look of the Maxrock earphones you mention in your post, and the silicone must make them more comfortable to sleep with too. The price is great too for this two in one product.

  • Wow, I am in need of some ear buds for the airplane, and this seems like an affordable option for me!  

    With the price being so reasonable I am not so worried about them not lasting a super long time.  And if they do, hey that is just a bonus.  I like the Panasonic ear buds, probably because I like that particular brand anyway for electronics.  

    Great information, thanks!

    • Hi! Matt’s Mom.

      Panasonic brand for sure is a trusted name established for years.  There is no doubt why the PANASONIC RP-HJE125-A Wired Earbuds could not be easy to outmatch by the other 4 brands among the list when it comes to sound quality.  

      Just take the precaution of its long chord.  It tangles easily.

  • Thanks a lot for such thorough review. I must say that I enjoy using earphones and I am using it on consistent base especially while going to school. What I always look when buying these is design and quality. It is most important for me that earphones endure for a long time. I like Panasonic brand, I am using it so I will definitely order RP-HJE125-A Wired Earbuds.

    • I definitely agree with you Daniel.  

      You won’t regret to try the PANASONIC RP-HJE125-A Wired Earbuds.  It will surely boost your music experience.  

      Thanks and have a great day!

  • A good set of headphones (or, 3…I like having back-ups!) are so hard to find.  Like you said..everyone’s ears are different, including what frequencies sooth us or, freak us out!  

    I’m a bass girl all the way.  Sony has always been pretty good to me but, when I went on a deep bass search a few years ago I was left wanting.  You are the second person telling me these Sony MDRXB50AP Extra Bass Earbuds are the bang for the buck sound I’ve been searching for.

    It may not be a big deal to others but, Sony also stopped having volume control (which is never coming back to low-ends apparently ha!) and mics on their low-ends for a while as well so, I’m grateful that feature is back!  I have AKG’s that came with my new Samsung Galaxy phone but, honestly, I’m scared to take them from the house at that price!

    I also have the skullcandy smokin’ buds, excellent bass but, I have to do all kinds of weird things to keep them attached to me while I’m working out *tucks cords under tank-top straps!*

    It might be sign, since I was shopping for mobile phone car mounts as well today, that I should check out the Senso Wireless Sports Earphone instead.  I can even test them out to see if it’s a good fit.  I don’t have tiny ears but, I have that oddness of tiny ear-holes! 

    • I really like to hear your experience Frye.   

      Sony MDRXB50AP Extra Bass Earbud is a powerhouse when it comes to bass.  There are other brands that could kill the mighty bass of Sony MDRXB50AP but it would cause extra bill.  

      If you are not an audiophile, the decent bass and sound performance of Sony MDRXB50AP would be enough.  But who cares for under $30.00 earphone?  It won’t hurt our pocket at all.  

      Just one more thing.  I also included in my review the drawbacks of Sony MDRXB50AP.  Please take note that its size is quite big compared to the other four on my list. 

      I personally like the PANASONIC RP-HJE125-A Wired Earbuds because it is tiny in size and fits snugly on my ears.  I can never ask for more with this piece of earphone.  The sound clarity is there and its bass is surprisingly forceful.  Except that this is a wired earphone and its long cable mix-up easily from time to time.  

  • I did not know that sleep earplug headphones existed… I think I might need to buy a couple, one for me, and one for my wife. Apparently we wake each other up with some regularity because of our snoring.

    We usually like to listen to something together before we head off to sleep so… the Maxrock earphones would be a perfect solution.

    And considering the “warning” about frequent use, just use them as ear plugs when I need a really good nights sleep.

    • Maxrock is one of a kind earphone that could be used as an earplug as well. 

      You can benefit from its design because it has a dual ear tips purposely to block out background noise.  Just take caution of using it frequently to prevent health issues. 

      Now, you can have a good night sleep 🙂  

  • I really enjoyed viewing the dissection of the earbud at the top of the page.  I’ve never thought of there being so many parts to earphones and earbuds.  That was really interesting.  Thank you for sharing the different kinds of earbuds and earphones.  It’s saves so much time and money rather than trying them all out and more trying to find the perfect ones for my own ears.  I was mostly interested in those SENSO wireless sports earphones.  Those look like the kinds that I would enjoy the most.  Thank you 🙂

    • Thanks Kaeyoes for your interest in SENSO Wireless Sports Earphone.  

      SENSO is one of the most affordable sports earphone you can buy under $30.00.  It is really hard to find in the market a bargain deal like SENSO.  

      Yes, you will enjoy using it both for leisure and sports.  

  • I have been looking for some more earbuds because the ones I have start to hurt my ears after awhile. I usually use mine when I am workoing out. I was thinking for black friday I would buy some cheap earbuds. 

    I think the maxrock noise isolating sleep earbuds sound good to me. I like the way they will conform to my ear and I should’nt have to adjust them all the time like I do with my current earbuds. I dont need them for sleeping but if they are designed to be comfortable for 8 hours surely i can wear them for 1 hour.

    You said they dont have a volume button. Can I still turn them up and down with my phone?

    • Hi Travis!

      Yes, you can control the volume through your phone.

      Maxrock Noise Isolating Earplugs is a nice choice if you want to prefer a good isolation pair of earphones. It features a dual layer ear tip that makes it stand to block outside noise.

      Just note that Maxrock is not a sports earphone. The Senso Wireless Sports Earphone may suit its purpose if you wish to use it during work out and running outdoors.

      Thank you for your interest to read my article.

  • best earphones ever, look and it bring real music experience. It is amazing that revenue expected is near 15 billion in United States with a prize of $30. I wonder which year will it take place around the globe,  I really like the rubbersnof it and for sure this earphones provide high volume and listening of music experience.

    • Thanks Sanele for your interest.

      Investing in a good pair of earphone under $30.00 is not a big deal at all. Just think over your personal preference before buying the right one.

  • I personally love Maxrock. It is comfortable to the ears. Are there any headphones you could advice to get? I ask because I tend to have pain in my ears from too much noise and trying to raise the volume as they do not accommodate. Ear pieces are affordable at times but I feel headphones are more convenient.

    Thanks.

    • I think Maxrock Noise Isolating Earplugs could serve its objective.  Due to its dual layer ear tip, you can take advantage of its feature to isolate ambient noise outside and freely listen to music at the same time.   

      We will be glad to hear your personal experience on the product at the future. 

      Thanks.  

  • I can’t believe I can get the BETRON DC950 Earphones for $12?  That is pretty amazing.  I absolutely love the flat cable and the sleek design and red chord.  I love them, and I really am in awe that they are $12!!  I’m there!  I clicked the link, and they even come with a 30-day money-back-guarantee.  That rocks!  I love them all, but since I have to buy several pairs for my kids, I’m going with these.  Thank you so much for the great info! 

    • Yes Babsie, you can have the BETRON DC950 Earphone for just $12.00.  It is the most affordable earphone on my list. 

      That is a fact that we don’t need to break our penny banks barely to have a good sounding pair of earphone.