Editorrating 3.9 Edifier W820NB Plus are a strong contender under $100, especially in sound. However, at this price point, Edifier had to take some shortcuts. The new Edifier W820NB Plus are the upgraded version of the non-Plus model. While both share the same body, the Plus is almost brand new internally. You get Hi-Res audio certification even for wired listening, stronger active noise cancelling, better noise reduction during calls, and (looks like) new 40mm titanium-coated drivers. Best of all, Edifier is asking for $80 for W820NB Plus, the same price as for the non-Plus model. However, to achieve that price, build quality had to suffer. While it keeps the weight down, the fully plastic body doesn’t feel reassuring (with some very sharp corners). More on that later. So, can the pros outshine the cons? Are Edifier W820NB Plus worth it? Let’s find out. Price: HeadphonesAddict is user supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. Edifier W820NB Plus Hybrid Active Noise Cancelling Headphones – LDAC Codec – Hi-Res Audio – Fast… Edifier W820NB Plus Hybrid Active Noise Cancelling Headphones – LDAC Codec – Hi-Res Audio – Fast… $79.99 $89.99 in stock 1 used from $79.19 as of September 26, 2023 5:05 am Buy now Amazon.com Pros & Cons: Balanced, natural, and decently detailed sound Long battery life of 33.5h per charge with ANC Strong indoor Bluetooth range of 65 feet Decently comfy and removable earpads Splendid call quality in quiet enivornments… … but muted and distorted in louder environments Average passive & active noise cancellation All-plastic design, no protective case Category ratings: Editorrating 3.9 By HeadphonesAddict Userratings 3.9 User Ratings: 9 Category Sound Comfort & Fit Durability Battery Features Noise Isolation Noise Cancelling Bluetooth Value Our rating 4.0 4.0 3.5 4.5 4.0 2.5 3.0 5.0 4.5 User rating 4.1 3.6 3.3 4.5 3.8 2.9 3.5 4.9 4.4 RATE THIS MODEL User Rating _._ No Rating 1.0 Bad 1.5 Meh 2.0 Acceptable 2.5 Average 3.0 Good 3.5 Almost great 4.0 Great 4.5 Almost Perfect 5.0 Fantastic User Rating _._ No Rating 1.0 Bad 1.5 Meh 2.0 Acceptable 2.5 Average 3.0 Good 3.5 Almost great 4.0 Great 4.5 Almost Perfect 5.0 Fantastic User Rating _._ No Rating 1.0 Bad 1.5 Meh 2.0 Acceptable 2.5 Average 3.0 Good 3.5 Almost great 4.0 Great 4.5 Almost Perfect 5.0 Fantastic User Rating _._ No Rating 1.0 Bad 1.5 Meh 2.0 Acceptable 2.5 Average 3.0 Good 3.5 Almost great 4.0 Great 4.5 Almost Perfect 5.0 Fantastic User Rating _._ No Rating 1.0 Bad 1.5 Meh 2.0 Acceptable 2.5 Average 3.0 Good 3.5 Almost great 4.0 Great 4.5 Almost Perfect 5.0 Fantastic User Rating _._ No Rating 1.0 Bad 1.5 Meh 2.0 Acceptable 2.5 Average 3.0 Good 3.5 Almost great 4.0 Great 4.5 Almost Perfect 5.0 Fantastic User Rating _._ No Rating 1.0 Bad 1.5 Meh 2.0 Acceptable 2.5 Average 3.0 Good 3.5 Almost great 4.0 Great 4.5 Almost Perfect 5.0 Fantastic User Rating _._ No Rating 1.0 Bad 1.5 Meh 2.0 Acceptable 2.5 Average 3.0 Good 3.5 Almost great 4.0 Great 4.5 Almost Perfect 5.0 Fantastic User Rating _._ No Rating 1.0 Bad 1.5 Meh 2.0 Acceptable 2.5 Average 3.0 Good 3.5 Almost great 4.0 Great 4.5 Almost Perfect 5.0 Fantastic CONTENTS (show more) Edifier W820NB Plus related: Best budget Bluetooth headphones Sound 4.0 Great Edifier W820NB Plus have a relatively balanced and non-fatiguing tuning out of the box with decent detail retrieval. However, they sound best in Ambient sound mode. Check the Edifier W820NB Plus – A/B sound test: Edifier W820NB Plus Sound Quality Test – HeadphonesAddict Learn how to understand sound comparisons. Almost all Bluetooth headphones require some custom tuning to sound better. Edifier was bold enough to offer its house tuning without the option to customize the EQ (despite saying otherwise on the website). Fortunately, the default sound signature is nicely balanced with smooth bass and midrange. There are some issues in the upper ranges, but more on that in a sec. Edifier W820NB Plus Frequency Response As seen from the graph, using Ambient Sound mode (green) gives the most balanced bass and midrange. Bass: Well-controlled but lacking sub-bass energy Lower frequencies have a very neutral response, with some differences depending on which ANC mode you use. Leaving ANC off boosts the sub-bass, contributing to extra punch and warm sound. In contrast, enabling ANC does the opposite and even slightly lowers the bass below the neutral line. Interestingly, if you want the most accurate low-end, you must enable Ambient mode. It results in only a slightly elevated bass that sounds natural, but you lose some of the sub-bass rumble. Overall, the bass feels tight and controlled, perfect for music genres like metal, while giving a decent rumble to hip-hop and pop songs. But if you want to rattle your skull, look at the best bass headphones instead. Midrange: Balanced and natural The midrange is also neutral, which gives instruments and vocals a very natural tone. Everything sounds just the way it should. The aluminum-coated dynamic driver inside Edifier W820NB Plus. Vocals are smooth and free of sibilance, regardless of the vocalist’s gender. Even “Lift Me Up” by Rihanna, which tends to show harshness in upper ranges, sounds passable on the W820NB Plus. Likewise, instruments, acoustic and electric, sound how they should. Though, they’re a bit on the bright side due to the lower treble peak at 8kHz. Treble: Good clarity but lacking refinement Edifier decided to stay away from elevating the upper treble above 10kHz to increase resolution and air (just like in other Edifier headphones) and boost the 8.5kHz region instead. That creates a sense of clarity but adds unnecessary shimmer and brightness to the sound. Detail retrieval is decent, and cymbals sound textured enough if you want to enjoy some smooth jazz. However, the high-hat hits get easily lost in the mix during busy instrumentation. Changing EQ presets doesn’t do much apart from “Classical,” which further boosts the treble region. Therefore, we advise you to use the “Classic” preset and Ambient mode for the best sound quality. For the most accurate tuning, it’s best to keep using the “Classic” preset. As for the soundstage, it is pretty intimate. Sounds don’t feel trapped in your head, but you also don’t sense as if the music floats around you. Furthermore, imaging could be slightly more accurate. Sounds are still placed where they should be, but some headphones can pinpoint their location more accurately. Nonetheless, Edifier W820NB Plus should satisfy any budget audiophile who wants headphones for travel without breaking the bank. Moreover, W820NB Plus’s midrange sounds more natural than on their flagship Edifier WH950NB. The latter sound smoother and more textured, but not necessarily $70 better. For around $80, Edifier W820NB Plus are definitely worth checking out. Does wired mode change sound? Instead of a 3.5mm jack, W820NB Plus use a USB-C port for wired audio. Since it uses internal DSP, the sound and volume don’t change compared to Bluetooth. You must buy a separate USB-C to USB-C cable to run Edifier W820NB Plus wired from your smartphone. However, the connection doesn’t work everywhere. Windows 11 refuses to recognize them as an audio playback device, only as a mic. Though, they worked okay on Windows 10 and Android smartphone. It’s worth noting that Edifier included the USB-A to USB-C cable and not the USB-C on both sides. That’s fine for computers, whereas you need to buy a separate cable to run them from a smartphone. Check out similar headphones: Best Bluetooth headphones under $100 Best over-ear headphones under $100 Comfort & Fit 4.0 Great Edifier W820NB Plus have a lightweight design with soft and decently plush earpads, which are only adequate for shorter listening sessions. In contrast, stability is suitable even for exercising. These W820NB Plus use over-ear pleather earpads. They’re filled with memory foam to increase plushness and to even up the pressure from clamping force. Unless you have big ears, the earpads on these over-ear headphones should cover them entirely. They aren’t the deepest, so you might feel the back of your earlobes touching the sides. Overall, headphones are pretty comfy. But compared to Edifier WH950NB, which are much plushier, so they’re a better fit for long listening sessions. Edifier WH950NB are in every way comfier, better built and performing headphones. But they also cost more. Moving to the fit, the headphones arrive with a relatively strong clamping force. While that’s great for stability, it’s terrible for comfort. We advise you to leave them overnight, stretching over some books to ease up the clamp and become comfier. Learn how to make them more comfortable from our in-depth article. You can safely use them during workouts if you seek stable headphones that don’t fall off your headphones after every movement (note that they lack sweat resistance). A slightly annoying thing is the air pumping in and out every time you readjust the earcups. It’s something that isn’t present in other headphones. Another design oversight worth pointing out are the sharp plastic corners around the headband. You can scratch yourself if you accidentally hit the corner. Headband’s edges are designed to form a uniform shape of the headphones, but they’re also sharp as a result. Here are headphones that provide better stability during workouts: Best workout headphones Best headphones for running Durability 3.5 Almost Great Edifier W820NB Plus have an all-plastic build that doesn’t look too reassuring, with no included bag or case for added protection. But you can at least change the earpads if they ever become stiff. The new W820NB Plus use the same body as the non-Plus version. That means a fully plastic design; even the headband extension is plastic. It isn’t the cheapest nor the most premium one. Headphones are still quite flexible, but we don’t have the same confidence stretching them compared to headphones with an aluminum frame. There’s even an exposed wire inside a headband connecting the two cups. You can see the cable connecting the 2 earcups running inside a plastic headband extender. Furthermore, headphones lack a case or a bag to store them in (despite coming in a bigger packaging as the WH950NB, which have a carrying case). On the other hand, earpads feel pretty good. They’re made of soft memory foam and faux leather and are relatively plush. But, with regular use, they’re bound to stiffen up. Fortunately, these headphones use snap-on earpads with a plastic frame similar to the WH950NB, which makes them user replaceable. We’re unsure if Edifier sells the replacements, but you can buy third-party ones for $19. Earpads can be easily swapped for new ones. It’s worth mentioning that while Edifier W820NB Plus are stable enough during exercise, only 2 layers of tiny mesh stands between your ears and the driver. Meaning that moisture from sweat can quickly get into your headphones. Since they lack an official IP rating, be cautious if you plan to use them during workouts. Battery 4.5 Almost Perfect Edifier W820NB Plus’s battery life of 33 hours and 20 minutes per charge places them somewhere in the middle, which is solid. Thanks to fast charging, you get another 7 hours in just 10 minutes. Edifier W820NB Plus Battery Comparison Premium headphones have difficulties reaching 30 hours on a single charge. Meanwhile, affordable offers like the W820NB Plus can do that with ease. More accurately, during our test at 50% volume and ANC enabled, Edifier W820NB Plus had a battery life of: 33 hours and 20 minutes That places them somewhere in the middle compared to other ANC headphones. While they’re still far away from outstanding 1MORE SonoFlow, 33 hours is still suitable enough for long trips. Furthermore, if you ensure to charge them during pauses, fast charging can quickly juice them up: Adding extra 7 hours of playtime in a 10-minute charge. Features 4.0 Great Edifier W820NB Plus have all the features of premium headphones but at a lower price. We just miss more customization options. It would be a surprise if Bluetooth headphones under $100 wouldn’t come with features like active noise cancellation, ambient sound mode, and even a companion app. App’s front page (on the left) and selecting multifunction key functionality (on the right). The Edifier Connect app packs a good selection of extra features, like: Soothing sounds EQ presets Low-latency Game mode Shut Off feature Unfortunately, you can’t customize the controls. Also, you need an app to enable turning ANC/transparency off with a button under the right earcup. Otherwise, you can only switch between ANC and ambient mode, just like in Apple AirPods Max. EQ presets The app offers 4 sound profiles: Classic, Classical, Rock, and Pop. There’s a very tiny difference between them. There’s no custom EQ option like on the rest of the Edifier headphones we’ve tested. Despite saying you can customize the equalizer, we can’t find the option. Not even after updating the app a few days ago. Maybe they will add the custom EQ in a later update. Soothing sounds You get 32 different relaxing sounds of nature, animals, fire crackling, and even some abstract tunes like “3D Soundscape”. They vary in length from just 23 seconds to 4 minutes and more. Make sure to open the in-app player and select if you want to have the sound playing on repeat. Otherwise, the sounds will keep on changing. The audio samples are indeed very relaxing. A minor complaint is that they start with a fade-in and end with a fade-out, which can be distracting, especially on shorter sounds. Microphone Quality Microphone performance in Edifier W820NB Plus has 2 sides; it goes from excellent to mediocre just by changing the environment. Edifier W820NB Plus microphone test: As mentioned, these headphones perform differently depending on the surrounding noise. When you’re someplace quiet, they pick your voice really well. However, moving to a noisier place changes the whole picture. While background noise is successfully removed, your voice gets muffled and occasionally difficult to understand. We advise you to stay away from noisy places during phone calls for the best call quality. Noise Isolation 2.5 Average Edifier W820NB Plus use a relatively thin plastic shell that doesn’t block much noise outside or keep it in. They do have some sound leakage. You might think that firm clamping force and over-ear design result in great passive isolation. Well, not if the earcups are made of thin plastic. It looks like there’s some resonance between 200-400Hz that actually boosts this region by simply wearing the headphones. The plastic used in W820NB Plus doesn’t absorb ambient noise that effectively. You can hear most of what’s happening around you, just slightly muffled. As a result, active noise cancelling is a must if you want to enjoy music peacefully. Noise Cancelling 3.0 Good Edifier W820NB Plus don’t live up to the promise of reducing -43dB of ambient noise. But their active noise cancelling still makes your commute a little more peaceful. Edifier W820NB Plus active noise cancelling test: Edifier W820NB Plus ANC Test – HeadphonesAddict The new W820NB Plus supposedly have all new ANC tech compared to the non-Plus variant, reducing down to -43dB of environmental noise compared to -38dB. Based on that, these headphones should be on par with the best. However, in reality, their bigger brother WH950NB beats them in every area. Looking at the graph, Edifier W820NB Plus can reduce down to -35dB of background noise and not -43dB. The latter is truer for the more premium Edifier alternative. Based on the graph, the WH950NB are better than W820NB Plus across the entire range. Strangely, the lower frequencies is where these headphones perform worse. They can only reduce them by -10dB, which means you can still hear some cabin noise during a flight. The performance improves in the midrange and treble. So they can mute the speech to a reasonable degree. How about ambient sound mode? Ambient sound mode or transparency mode boosts bass and lower midrange up to a natural level but starts going down after 1kHz. To get the most out of Ambient Sound mode, set it to +3. The performance is overall better than WH950NB, but not nearly as good as some true wireless earbuds like 1MORE Aero or EarFun Air Pro 3, which boost frequencies up to 3kHz. This means that you can have a conversation while wearing the W820NB Plus, but the voices sound muted. Bluetooth 5.0 Perfect Edifier W820NB Plus offer class-leading Bluetooth connection stability on top of supporting LDAC and Game mode. Sadly, no multipoint. Headphones come with Bluetooth version 5.2, which isn’t the latest. That could lead to Bluetooth interferences if you use them in a room full of wireless devices. At least in our experience, we haven’t encountered any issues, despite having 2 Wi-Fi routers and at least 6 other wireless gadgets. Moreso, headphones actually showed outstanding connection range. Edifier W820NB Plus only use physical controls. In our indoor test, we left our phone and walked on the other side of the house, passing at least 2 brick walls to see when headphones would start stuttering. Edifier W820NB Plus offer a range of: Up to 65 feet (or 20 meters) That’s on par with Apple AirPods Max and TrueFree F1, both offering class-leading indoor Bluetooth range. Most Bluetooth headphones and earbuds can reach around 40 to 45 feet. Sadly, headphones don’t support multipoint, so you can forget about multitasking capabilities. How to pair Edifier W820NB Plus? First-time pairing requires you to turn the headphones on, and they immediately go into pairing mode. To pair them to a second device, turn them off and back on while holding the power button. You will hear a “Pairing” prompt from the speakers. What Bluetooth Codecs Do They Use? Headphones under SBC, AAC, and LDAC Bluetooth codecs. You must activate the latter inside the Bluetooth menu’s settings. Furthermore, you can select the audio sampling quality when using LDAC, from 44.1kHz/48kHz to 96kHz. You have to select the best audio quality setting inside the app to get the most out of LDAC. Is There an Audio Lag? You don’t need to worry about audio lag during videos on YouTube or social media since these apps are already optimized to sync the audio with Bluetooth headphones perfectly. On the other hand, there’s a bit of delay in mobile games. Interestingly, Game mode doesn’t seem to reduce it, at least to the naked eye. There may be a bug in the firmware that will get fixed eventually. Should You Get Edifier W820NB Plus? 4.5 Almost Perfect Edifier W820NB Plus definitely deserve attention due to their excellent default tuning, which is rare to see in Bluetooth headphones under $100. Otherwise, you always have to make some adjustments. If you enjoy a great sound without paying a premium, Edifier W820NB Plus are a worthwhile pick. Overall, we highly recommend these headphones for anyone who wants to take excellent sound quality on the go for under $100. We hope Edifier can make the sound equally good with all modes and not just in Ambient mode. On the other hand, people expecting a high level of customizability and ability to block outside noise should look elsewhere. ANC performance and build quality could be better, but at $80, that’s a worthy trade-off for what you’re getting. Edifier W820NB Plus Hybrid Active Noise Cancelling Headphones – LDAC Codec – Hi-Res Audio – Fast… Edifier W820NB Plus Hybrid Active Noise Cancelling Headphones – LDAC Codec – Hi-Res Audio – Fast… $79.99 $89.99 in stock 1 used from $79.19 as of September 26, 2023 5:05 am Buy now Amazon.com How do Edifier W820NB Plus compare to the competition? Edifier’s have a more accurate sound out of the box, while most competitors aim for an extreme bass boost. Headphones have an outstanding Bluetooth indoor range, easily surpassing similarly priced rivals. They offer replaceable earpads, whereas most competitors come with glued ones. They have an average battery life of around 33 hours per charge, with most competitors lasting a few more hours. ANC performance is nothing to write home about, which is on par with most competitors. Edifier W820NB Plus Alternatives 1MORE SonoFlow You can fix their slightly muted sound with some EQ, but the Edifier’s are more natural overall. The same goes for Ambient mode, which sounds very thin in SonoFlow. Both have mediocre passive isolation and ANC, but 1MORE’s are better built and have a protective case. Furthermore, SonoFlow have an incredible 60-hour battery, making them a better pick for longer voyages. 1MORE SonoFlow review Anker Soundcore Life Q30 Expect a more energetic and bright sound that you need to tone down in the app if you want a more natural music listening experience. The Q30s have a slightly cheaper-feeling build (due to rattling) but come with a carrying case. Their app is also richer with features. Also, headphones offer multipoint, the same rock-solid Bluetooth, and a battery life that’s 10 hours longer than Edifier’s. Anker Soundcore Life Q30 review Edifier WH950NB They have a more relaxed sound that isn’t necessarily more natural but feels more mature. You also get some custom control over the EQ. Build quality and comfort are definitely on the WH950NB side, with plusher pads and headband, aluminum frame, and carrying case. ANC is also a significant strength of the premium option, outperforming the W820NB Plus in every aspect. But they cost around $150. Edifier WH950NB review What’s in the Box? Edifier W820NB Plus Bluetooth headphones USB-A to USB-C audio and charging cable User manual Specifications Type: Over-ear Connection: Bluetooth 5.2 Back design: Closed-back Drivers: 40mm dynamic Frequency range: 20-40.000Hz Impedance: n/a Weight: 7.8 ounces (221 grams) Mic & Controls: Yes Water resistance: None Battery life: 33.5h (with ANC), 49h (without ANC) Charging time: Quick charge – USB-C Active noise cancelling: Yes, hybrid Bluetooth codecs: SBC, LDAC Wireless range: 65 feet (20 meters) Microphone: DNN noise cancelling tech Peter SusicPeter’s childhood interest in audio has grown into a full-blown quest to find the best headphones. He’s got many years of editor experience trying out numerous audiophile and consumer headphones. His words: “After many years, I can confidently say which ones are good and which ones are terrible.” Find his honest opinion in his reviews and guides.