Find the best earbuds with a microphone that are great for answering phone calls in loud places.
|Rating||Price||Connection||Mic Quality||Battery life||Noise-cancelling||More info|
Apple AirPods Pro Best overall
Bluetooth 5.0 (+ H1 chip)
5h + 24h in case
Jabra Elite 7 Active Runner-up
8h + 22h in case
Aukey EP-N7 Great value
5h + 20h in case
TaoTronics Soundliberty 80 Best classic earphones
2.5h + 16h in case
Jaybird Vista 2 Best for sports
8h + 16h in case
Skullcandy Ink’d 2.0 Best wired
Wired – 3.5mm
SoundPEATS Sonic Best under $50
14h + 20h in case
While everyone likes the convenience of having multiple features stuck into one device, their quality varies significantly. It’s the same with microphones.
Earbuds, especially true wireless ones, sit far away from your mouth. Therefore, they require a lot of processing to isolate your voice more clearly.
However, the performance is bad in most cases, with lots of distortion, loud ambient noise, or muffled voice.
Price doesn’t really matter when it comes to mic quality in earbuds. Some premium earbuds, like Sony WF-1000XM4, can actually disappoint with their performance.
That’s why we’ve tested and collected only the best earbuds for call quality so that you can make a more educated decision.
Best Earbuds with Microphone
1. Apple AirPods Pro
The best pair and the most popular true wireless pick for most people.
- Sound better than original AirPods
- In-ear fit that’s suitable for moderate exercise
- Effective noise cancelling and isolation
- Seamless user experience with iPhone/iOS
- Sweatproof with IPX4 certification
- Expensive even among premium alternatives
- No built-in volume controls
- Cheap lid mechanism on the charging case
AirPods Pro have a balanced sound quality throughout the frequency range, with minor elevation in the upper midrange to boost vocals.
That is especially important when making voice calls to hear the caller’s voice more clearly.
Furthermore, mics work incredibly well. Active noise canceling, Transparency mode, and overall call quality are excellent. No wonder AirPods Pro are such a huge deal among customers.
By pairing them with an Apple device, you enable extra features such as Dolby Atmos, Spatial Audio, Audio Sharing, switching between two devices simultaneously, and ear canal scanning.
Earbuds also have decent battery life and support wireless charging. Sadly, you have to use voice commands to change the volume.
Another highlight is comfort. Many users swear by these as the most comfortable earbuds on the market. Unfortunately, ear tips don’t go very deep, so their stability is only decent.
2. 1MORE Evo
Premium earbuds with a perfect combination of great active noise cancelling and microphone quality.
- Great build with quality materials
- Super-fast and Qi wireless charging
- Good level of customizability
- Splendid comfort & stability
- Great active noise cancellation
- Impressive microphone quality
- Good bass performance…
- but with harsh treble
- Below average passive noise isolation
- Mediocre Bluetooth range
Each earbud is equipped with 3 microphones, carefully listening to the outside noise. The result is excellent active noise cancelling performance, rivaling the best in class.
Furthermore, 1MORE Evo excel in microphone quality as well. Phone calls sound excellent in a quiet environment (for true wireless buds), with minimal distortion.
Call quality gets more compressed when speaking in a loud place, but you remain perfectly understandable.
3. Aukey EP-N7
Undeniably the best call quality on a budget that can rival premium models.
- Excellent comfort
- Good fit and stability
- Impressive active noise cancellation performance
- Great call quality for the price
- Decent overall battery life
- Warm sound
- … but with too much bass
- You have to force SBC to eliminate video lag (Android)
The sound quality is good for the most part, with a strong emphasis on punchy bass notes. The midrange and treble stay relatively relaxed, so the EP-N7 make for a very pleasant listen.
Despite their affordable price at just $40, the EP-N7 are truly compelling true wireless earbuds with mic. Not only do they do a great job with active noise cancelling, but the voice quality is also superb.
Earbuds successfully block the majority of surrounding noise during voice or Zoom calls, even in more demanding situations.
On top of excellent call performance, you can expect a more comfortable fit as well. You can wear them for hours without having to take a break.
Get Free Headphones by Joining Our Giveaway
Click on the button below to find out this month’s giveaway prize.
4. TaoTronics Soundliberty 80
The AirPods lookalike with robust construction and equally excellent mic performance as Apple’s earbuds.
- Good overall sound
- IPX8 water-resistant rating
- Excellent microphone quality
- Support for both AAC and aptX
- No audio lag with videos and games
- No passive isolation whatsoever
- Subpar battery life
- Poor stability
For classic earphones, the sound quality is quite good. It’s decently full and airy, providing an enjoyable experience even for long listening sessions.
The design of these true wireless earphones strongly resembles Apple’s AirPods, with a few unique accents to distinguish one from the other. Both use automatic ear detection to pause music.
For more than half the price, call quality is quite impressive and comparable to more premium models.
Sadly, Soundliberty 80 don’t have great battery life. 2.5 hours per charge is hardly enough for daily use. Moreover, there’s no passive isolation like in other earbuds that use ear tips to ensure a better seal.
5. Jaybird Vista 2
Great true wireless earbuds for sports that also deliver clear call quality.
- Great out-of-the-box sound
- Excellent comfort and stability
- Extremely durable with water-resistant charging case
- Good battery life
- Feature-rich companion app
- Decent active noise cancellation
- Occasional connection stutters
- Error messages during firmware updates
Out of the box, the sound profile is smooth and slightly V-shaped. The audio performance is suitable for most music genres, from rock to hip hop. You can flavor it to your taste inside a companion app.
Vista 2 have a similar design as their predecessor. Only this time, they’ve added a fabric mesh on top of earbud controls and mics.
The mesh provides greater noise reduction wind noise when you have to answer a call outdoors.
Microphones perform pretty well in both quiet and loud places. On top of that, earbuds offer active noise cancellation and ambient sound mode.
Additionally, earbuds sport a highly durable build, with an IP68 rating and MIL-STD-810G military standard of durability. Even the case has an IP54 splashproof rating.
6. Skullcandy Ink’d 2.0
The best wired earbuds for making phone calls on the go.
- Decent microphone quality
- Comfortable fit
- Overly bass-forward sound
- Cheaper build
As with many budget consumer earbuds, the sound of the Ink’d 2.0 is leaning towards the bassy side. If you like more bass-focused music, these will suit you well. Just don’t expect a highly detailed presentation.
Earbuds have a pretty ergonomic design that provides a tight fit without causing discomfort. You can wear them for hours without problems.
Inline remote houses a mic that does its job quite well. It can isolate your voice clearly enough, even when you enter a noisier room.
On the flip side, excellent noise isolation helps you hear the caller better.
7. SoundPEATS Sonic
A reliable pair for phone calls and good sound quality that doesn’t cost too much.
- Great sound quality
- Amazing battery life (14h/charge)
- Comfortable fit
- Reliable Bluetooth 5.2 connection
- Support for aptX Adaptive
- Overly boosted sub-bass
- Cheap-feeling construction
A reasonably balanced presentation is cut off by a huge boost in the sub-bass. You don’t even hear it in many cases, but the lower bass can get overwhelming in more modern genres.
The Sonic’s mics are more than decent enough for answering voice calls in all situations. Earbuds pick up a clear voice that’s fully understandable, regardless of the amount of background noise.
If you make many voice and video calls per day and want your earbud’s battery to last for long periods, these are worth checking out. With up to 14 hours on a single charge, they have the longest battery life on this list.
They’re also simple to use and have a reliable Bluetooth 5.2 connection. Unlike many others on the market, Sonic even support a futureproof aptX Adaptive Bluetooth codec and mono mode (so you can use only one earbud).
JBL Reflect Mini NC
Another great sports true wireless earbuds that also excel at mic quality. Durability and stability are top-notch, and you can pair them with an app to fully customize your experience.
Skullcandy Push Ultra
Their earphone design provides good awareness, while ear hooks ensure they don’t fall off. They’re a great alternative to classic earpieces, with good call quality.
Dirt-cheap truly wireless earbuds with good quality mics and excellent sound quality. They’re very basic and cheaply made, but for a lower price than $30, you can’t complain much.
Samsung Galaxy Buds Pro
Premium Samsung true wireless earbuds with a quality microphone system that make your voice sounds natural and decently full. On top of that, the buds have a Harman curve sound output and can actively reduce ambient sounds using ANC mode.
How to Pick the Best Earbuds with Microphone?
Before buying earbuds with microphone, you have to ask yourself a few questions to narrow your search.
Where Will I Make Calls With a Mic?
While most earbuds with microphones perform well in quiet places, it’s the loud ambient noise that makes the biggest difference.
If you plan to make phone calls with earbuds in a noise-free environment (using Microsoft Teams from home), almost any earbud will do the job.
On the other hand, if you’re often in a noisy environment, like on the streets, daily commute, or loud offices, investing in earbuds with a great ANC mic is a must.
Do I Need Quality ANC Technology for the Mic?
Most mics, especially those built into wireless earbuds, use special noise reduction technologies (cVc is most common) to isolate your voice during calls.
Much like in a previous question, if you make regular or conference calls in a noisy place, a good noise-cancelling mic helps make your voice understandable.
Still, not all earbuds that use cVc have great performance. This is just an algorithm that takes the signal and processes it.
Even the best noise cancelling tech can’t perform miracles if the mics are of bad quality or poorly placed.
How Do the Earbuds Fit?
If you plan to use earbuds for phone or video calls, chances are you will be using them for extended periods. Therefore, comfort is of the essence.
If you can’t test them personally, browse through various reviews to better understand how comfortable earbuds are.
The latter is even more important if you have smaller ears. Truly wireless earbuds can be a bit bulky, so picking the right ones can be a chore.
In general, look for more ergonomically shaped and light earbuds, as they usually offer the best fit.
What Sound Quality Do I Want?
That can be a bit tricky since there’s no guarantee that the best-sounding earbuds will also have excellent mic quality.
If the main priority is the call quality, make a list of your favorite earbuds with a mic. Then, check how each sounds like and only then decide which one you should buy.
What Makes a Quality Microphone?
A quality microphone can pick up your voice even in challenging situations. Voice must be as full as possible, with as little distortion and artifacts.
To achieve that, built-in mics have to resort to the latest technologies for background noise reduction.
Earbuds must pick up your voice with good enough clarity so that the person on the other end of the line understands you.
Furthermore, microphones must be sensitive enough so that your voice doesn’t appear too quiet. If the mic is quiet and earbuds boost your voice afterward, it can introduce lots of noise and distortion.
Since microphones also pick up unwanted ambient noise, they must know how to reduce it.
One way of doing that is to use multiple mics. One is facing your mouth to hear your voice better, whereas the other(s) listen to outside noise.
By having both your voice and ambient noise information, earbuds can filter out unwanted sounds and highlight your speech.
Active Noise Cancelling Technology in Mics
First of all, active noise cancellation technology for phone calls is different than noise canceling technology in headphones.
The latter cancels out more background noise for you, a headphone user, whereas the other block ambient noise from your voice so that the caller can hear you better.
It works similarly to regular noise filtering tech, just that this time around, it uses special chips (cVc) to erase everything around you actively.
cVc takes the information from all microphones on earbuds and uses a computer algorithm to isolate your voice.
Does it Pick Up Wind Noise?
Wind noise can be a big problem when making calls outdoors. Apart from good active noise cancellation, earbud manufacturer has to strategically place microphones to reduce a chance creating wind noise.
Jaybird Vista 2 uses such a practical solution, placing a mic under a fabric mesh. Newer ear buds like Sony WF-1000XM4 rely on an algorithm to cut out wind noise.
True wireless earbuds sit pretty far away from your mouth. That’s why some struggle to keep your voice clean, boosting the volume and introducing unwanted static noise.
No wonder that the best wireless earbuds for call quality have a stem to move the mic closer to your mouth.
Get Free Headphones by Joining Our Giveaway
Click on the button below to find out this month’s giveaway prize.
How Does a Mic Work?
For a basic understanding, a mic catches sound waves and transforms them into an electrical signal.
Of course, that signal is full of unwanted noise, so it has to use tricks to make it sound better.
To ensure clear call quality, the mic uses various filtering options.
The most basic one uses at least 2 mics. One is picking up your voice, while the other listens to background noise. Mic later filters out what he hears as ambient noise and only focuses on your voice.
A more advanced approach uses a computer algorithm to isolate your voice and cancel out ambiance. It’s called cVc, and is found in most Bluetooth headphones with integrated microphones.
Types of Microphones in Earbuds
For tiny devices such as in-ear headphones, you require tiny microphones. Manufacturers tend to pick between 2 different types: ECM and MEMS.
1. ECM is an older design, which uses slightly more space than MEMS. It’s also more power-hungry and less resistant to noise that’s induced by electronics.
However, it’s the cheapest to manufacture, easily swappable if it stops working and more resistant to water by design.
2. MEMS, on the other hand, is much smaller and more power-efficient. It’s also more resistant to heat and produces less noise.
That’s why it’s the most common type of microphone in today’s wireless headphones, where every bit of space matters.
Which is Better: ECM or MEMS?
As mentioned before, both have advantages and disadvantages. In general, using MEMS design makes more sense since it’s smaller and more power-efficient.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How do I know my earbuds have a microphone?
This information is usually stated on the box. Also, almost all Bluetooth earbuds have a built-in mic.
On the other hand, wired earbuds have a casing (and possibly remote controls) somewhere on the wire. If not, then they lack a microphone.
Do all earbuds have a mic?
While only some wired earphones have a microphone, all Bluetooth ones have one built into the housing.
What does built-in mic mean?
It means that the mic is located inside the housing of an earbud/headphone. Most Bluetooth audio devices use built-in microphones.
What’s the difference between earphones with mic and without it?
Earbuds with microphones can provide additional features, such as answering phone calls and summoning voice assistants. Furthermore, mics are essential for both active noise cancellation and ambient sound mode to work.
In contrast, earbuds without a mic can only play audio.
Are earbuds good for phone calls?
Wired or wireless earbuds, they both perform equally as well as bigger headphones. Also, earbuds are smaller and more practical to carry around.
Of course, a dedicated headset with a boom mic is still the best choice for making phone calls.