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10 Headphones Best NBA Players Use

Last updated: 7 months ago
8 min read

We test and evaluate headphones using a standardized 9-point methodology. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

The NBA players love listening to music and they’re not hiding their favored headphones. Find the headphones of your favorite All-Stars.

You might ask; “How do you know the best NBA players?”

Well, we don’t claim we know much about basketball. But we looked at the most-voted-for All-Star players and checked what headphones they’re listening to.

Keep in mind, some NBA players (like LeBron James) have headphone sponsor contracts for specific brands. So, they might get paid money to be seen wearing “insert-any-brand” headphones (Beats… khmm).

Nonetheless, most guys just want to enjoy music before a game starts. And, they’re using headphones they like the most. You need something to ease the stress before the competitive NBA playoffs.

Now, let’s take a look at the NBA players’ favorite picks. 

Top 10 Headphones That NBA Players Use

Beats Studio3 Wireless

Used by: LeBron James, James Harden, Anthony Davis, Jimmy Butler, Trae Young, Zion Williamson, Nikola Jokić, DeMar DeRozan, Fred VanVleet, Dejounte Murray

Lebron James Beats Studio3 Wireless
Source: Facebook/Beats by Dre

LeBron James, the King, and the 2020 NBA champion often listen to Beats Studio 3 Wireless before a game. He uses unique models that look cooler but have the same hardware as Studio3 Wireless you can buy.

The same wireless headphones are quite popular among other basketball players as well. James Harden and Anthony Davis use the same Beats headphones before games.

Beats Studio 3 Wireless are the iconic over-ear basketball headphones with strong, powerful bass that “amps up” any genre you throw at them. They’re a popular choice for bass lovers that want extra beat in their music.

You can choose different colors with a sleek matte finish. You get adaptive active noise cancelling and up to 22 hours of battery life per charge. Fast fuel gives 3 hours of playtime for a 10-minute charge.

With Apple’s W1 chip, they work seamlessly with all Apple devices. For around $350, these are the premium Beats choice liked by many NBA players and one of the best headphones for basketball.


Used by: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Stephen Curry, Jayson Tatum, Kemba Walker, Zach Levine

Stephen Curry JBL headphones

NBA basketball stars swear by this headphone sponsor since their headphones offer excellent comfort and cool looks.

While LIVE 650BTNC are still plasticky with little metal, small details make them stand out, especially the headband, dressed in durable fabric.

Stephen Curry also likes to wear them off the court because they offer a good active noise cancellation feature. Headphones come with Ambient Aware and TalkThru features for listening to your surroundings.

Battery life is pretty great, too, giving you a total of 30 hours of playtime. Earpads from faux leather are comfy and don’t cause any discomfort whatsoever. They can also fold to save up space in your bag you bring in a locker room.

As with many JBL headphones, these also have an exciting, energetic sound. Distinctly V-shaped signature gives punchy low-end and sparkly highs, making them great for more popular genres.

For the price, the JBL’s offer many useful features and even an app to customize the sound. It’s why many other NBA basketball players wear them as well.

Beats PowerBeats Pro

Used by: Pascal Siakam, LeBron James, James Harden, Karl-Anthony Towns, and others.

Pascal Siakam PowerBeats Pro true wireless earbuds.
Source: Youtube/QC Sports

Music was always a part of Pascal Siakam’s life. He was even in a choir when young, and although he didn’t like it very much, he started to appreciate music more.

He chooses PowerBeats Pro sports earbuds for his daily drivers because their sound quality suit his music preferences.

Beats by Dre are known for their bass response, and you can’t enjoy rap, trap, and pop with a heavy low-end punch. Pro’s are overall punchy and energetic, making them an excellent pick for any music genre.

Of course, the earbuds are fantastic for any kind of sports since they come with an ear hook design. Ear hooks grab your ears like glue, offering you superb stability.

Earbuds are made from hard plastic that can resist an accidental drop. And, we all know basketball gets sweaty, which makes IPX4 protection for sweat resistance essential. They’re not water-resistant, but at least sweat can’t harm them.

These are still one of the best true wireless earbuds for long battery life, offering you around 11 hours of runtime, with another 24 hours inside the storage case.

Beats PowerBeats Pro review

Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700

Used by: Luka Dončić

Luka Doncic Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700
Source: Youtube

One of the best young NBA players in the league enjoys Bose’s top-tier wireless headphones. He even has custom-painted ones with a Slovenian flag and his jersey number on the sides.

Bose made these look minimalistic and modern, a perfect combination for commuting from home to the court. The earcups go around your ears, so you get great comfort and fit.

The modern design also comes with modern features: touch controls, ambient mode, and active noise cancellation. The latter works really well, blocking a lot of ambient noise.

You can also tweak the intensity of the noise cancellation with a total of 11 levels. Regarding battery life, they last around 20 hours and fast charge when it gets low.

Bose is targeting a balanced sound signature with a somewhat neutral but still fun tuning. Bass is slightly elevated, providing you with a full, slightly warm sound.

On the other hand, Klay Thompson likes wearing Bose QuietComfort 35 II because of their comfort and ability to shut down annoying people. Klay has a diverse music taste, from reggae to rock, and classical genre. The QC 35 II headphones’ sound signature helps a lot since they have a very neutral output, with a slight bump in the lower bass.

Related guides:

Apple AirPods 2

Used by: Damian Lillard

Damian Lillard Apple AirPods 2
Source: Youtube/QC Sports

Even though you mostly see Damian Lillard from Portland Trail Blazers wearing JBL headphones, he uses Apple AirPods in his private time. He thinks big headphones are no longer cool, which is why he opts for a more pocketable option.

And who wouldn’t? They’re iconic true wireless earbuds that start it all. They have a straightforward yet elegant design, ensuring they stand out when you wear them.

Apart from playing music, they also have a few intelligent features. One of them is automatic pause/play when you take one earbud out of your ear and a touch-sensitive exterior to perform basic commands and summon Siri.

If you take many phone calls, you will be pleased with AirPods microphones, making your voice sound clean and natural. Battery life is also quite decent, giving you roughly 5 hours of playtime.

While there isn’t much low-end, you can still hear the bass kick, but it’s not very upfront. Emphasis on higher notes makes them suitable for vocal-oriented genres and podcasts.

Apple Airpods 2 review

Master & Dynamic MW65

Used by: Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant Master & Dynamic MW65

Luxurious wireless headphones from a luxury brand. Kevin Durant definitely likes to commute with style.

The build is all about premium materials. Soft lambskin earpads feel amazing on the skin and provide hours of uninterrupted listening. Stitched leather continues on the headband, while the frame is made of anodized aluminum.

MW65 also come with active noise-cancellation. If you need to dampen the outside world, these will definitely do the trick.

Battery life is measured at around 21 hours per charge, and you also get a hefty boost when fast charging: 15 minutes add you another 12 hours of runtime.

These offer a superb balance between the low and high end of the frequency spectrum. Nothing is too exaggerated, giving you a very faithful representation of the music.

If you are an Android user, make sure you have them on aptX since it improves the sound quality.

Skullcandy Crusher Wireless

Used by: Kyrie Irving

Kyrie Irving Skullcandy Crusher Wireless
Source: Youtube/QC Sports

If you like your bass strong, then you have to get the Skullcandy Crusher Wireless. Kyrie Irving likes to pack them everywhere he goes, even on NBA finals.

Headphones opt for a matte finish, with big physical controls on the earcups and a folding mechanism for portability.

The overall construction and earpads feel a bit plasticky, but soft and comfortable nevertheless. There is a carrying pouch inside the box, which is waterproof.

But the headphones aren’t protected against water. For that see the best waterproof Bluetooth headphones.

Since these wireless headphones don’t come with any premium feature that would drain the battery, they last up to an impressive 40 hours per single charge. If you keep the bass quantity to a minimum, you can make them last even longer.

Of course, the bass is the star of the show here. There is even a dedicated slider under the earcup where you adjust the low-end quantity. If you like subwoofers, these are great. They can rumble your head like nothing else.

If you’re interested in other bassy headphones, see our guide.

What are the best Skullcandy headphones?

HyperX Cloud Alpha

Used by: Joel Embiid

Joel Embiid HyperX Cloud Alpha

Every once a while, you want to chill and enjoy video games after playing basketball. Having a great pair of gaming headphones is essential.

Joel Embiid uses HyperX Cloud Alpha headset, which is a tremendous value-for-money headset with excellent sound quality.

Cloud Alpha are well made, with an aluminum frame, hard plastic cups, and braided cable for extra durability.

The cable is detachable and features inline controls for volume and muting the mic. The microphone is clear and high quality, with minimal distortion.

You can’t have a good gaming experience without great ear comfort and noise isolation. Cloud Alpha gives you both, providing you with incredibly soft pleather earpads.

The sound is surprisingly accurate to the original audio, considering these are gaming headset. While some might want a bit more bass response to amplify the in-game effects, this tuning works for music as well.

No wonder why they found a place in our “best gaming headsets” guide.

ASTRO A50 Wireless Gen.4

Used by: Devin Booker

Devin Booker astro gaming a50

Like Joel Embiid, Devin Booker is also a passionate gamer. He has won the 2020 ESPN NBA2K tournament and enjoys playing Call of Duty: Warzone and Apex Legends.

For that, he needs quality gaming headsets that won’t let him down mid-gameplay. That’s why he uses Astro Gaming A50 gaming headphones.

These are big yet very comfortable headsets, thanks to their plush earpads. Build quality is great, ensuring they don’t break if you ever rage quit a game.

Astros connect wirelessly through a base station, where they also charge. They work on all major gaming platforms, from PS5, Xbox Series X, and PC.

Headsets provide clear sound quality with a well-sized soundstage for excellent immersion. They even support Dolby Surround for a more realistic gaming experience.

Devin Brooker collaborated with ASTRO Gaming and designed a limited edition A40 model with glow-in-the-dark aesthetics.

Muzik One Connect

Used by: Paul George, Bradley Beal, Chris Paul

Paul George Muzik One Connect

Despite being newcomers in the headphone market, they’re already loved by some of the best basketball players in the NBA. Paul George even has a custom-painted pair.

One Connect wireless headphones borrow a little bit from both the Beats by Dre and Bang & Olufsen. What you end up with is a sleek-looking headphone that might attract some looks, especially if you pair them with punchy colors.

There is a surprising amount of accessories that come with these headphones. You get an extra cable for a 3.5mm connection, spare earpads, one carrying pouch, an additional hard storage case, and a carabiner to hook them on your backpack.

Comfort is excellent thanks to the brilliant idea of including on-ear and over-ear design earpads.

You can also customize controls on the earcup, making them either change the volume, call smart assistant, and even change your smart bulb’s light.

The sound quality is nicely balanced and punchy, as it should be. Everything sounds crystal clear, which is surprising for affordable headphones like these.

Young NBA player LaMelo Ball is using the latest Muzik VISION headphones that aren’t yet available for purchase. What makes them unique is the built-in camera, which LaMelo uses to broadcast his basketball matches in real-time.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can I play basketball with headphones?

Yes, if you play alone. Otherwise, you aren’t able to hear your teammates and your surroundings, resulting in worse performance on the court. When you see NBA players warming up with their headphones, it’s because they’re obligated to do so by their sponsors.

What music NBA players listen to?

Most popular music genres between NBA players are rap and hip hop. That being said, players like Klay Thompson and LeBron James even listen to some classical music to pump them up before a basketball match.

What headphones are best for basketball?

From the most popular ones, the Beats PowerBeats Pro. Basketball is a fast-paced sport, so you need stable wireless earbuds to stick to your ears like a glue.

Read more:

Conclusion: Headphones of NBA Players

These are the best headphones promoted by big NBA names. While it’s almost guaranteed big-name NBA players are paid for endorsing these headphones, they’re also some of the most popular models. And many lesser known NBA players are using Beats, Bose, and JBL headphones out of their own choice.

The headphone brands see the basketball players as a way to extend and solidify their marketing reach. And, if that’s something that makes you interested in trying these headphones or puts you off, is up to you.

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