The best headphones under £50? Soundcore Life Q20 Review

The Soundcore Life Q20s are a pair of over-ear wireless headphones, offering Active Noise Cancelling, good battery life and great sound quality. All of this at a budget of only £48.99. I've been using them for 2 months. Let's see how they really shape up.


Sound Quality

The Q20s are equipped with a 40 mm driver in each ear and are certified for Hi-Res Audio. Overall I find the initial tuning to offer a great sound signature, which I found suitable for most genres of music. They offer reasonable clarity in the lows and highs with exceptional performance in the mids. There is a feature included known as "Bass Up", this aims to increase the volume of the low end by a claimed 43%. When enabling this feature the entire experience became muddy and a mess - in bass heavy songs it may give you the extra "oomf" you desire but in anything more it will have you fumbling to turn it off. Another let down is that the sound signature is not customisable so you are stuck with their tuning, the headphones are not included in the Soundcore app.


Noise cancelling

A staple of these headphones is that they offer Active Noise Cancelling (ANC) at such a low price point (only £48.99 at the time of writing). When enabling the ANC i found that the volume would decrease slightly and flatten the music giving it a more muted vibe. However, the performance was fantastic. Most low end sounds were completely taken out and voices were significantly quietened but higher pitch noises do still remain. Loud noises are dampened but never completely removed unless you increase the volume above them.


Comfort

Equipped with 2 over-ear leather-covered

foam ear cups and plenty of cushioning in the top headband, these headphones are a dream to wear. While on a hike recently I wore these for almost the entire trip, I barely even noticed they were on. Comfort will not be an issue when wearing these, the only thing i noticed was that my ears got a bit hot under them due to the leather. The clamping force was also not too weak or too strong offering support where it's needed. The headband also has a plethora of

sizes, choosing the ratchet the positions rather

than having a smooth sliding scale.




Portability

The Q20s have the ability to swivel both ear cups over 90 degrees and both fold into the headband as well. This contributes to them being easy to store in a bag when travelling or around your neck for quick access. The included carrying bag is nice as it can prevent them from being scratched inside your bag but it is not a hard case. This means they can still be damaged from other large objects or from being thrown around in the bag.








Design

Soundcore chose to give these headphones a rather understated look, they are made from hard plastic in a dark grey colour with black leather ear cups. The left cup houses the power button and the ANC button.










The right contains the media controls, micro USB port and 3.5 mm audio jack. Locating the left and right ear cups also couldn't be easier as on the inside in large white text are the letters L and R respectively.


Battery Life

Exceptional. When ANC is enabled a huge 30 hours of playback is possible and an insane 60 hours is possible when not enabled. During my everyday use I went over 2 weeks between charges, obviously a mixture of having ANC on and off. The battery life on these outclasses even some more expensive headphones with similar offerings in sound quality and ANC ability, and eclipses others in the same price bracket.


Mic Quality

The microphone quality was serviceable. It picked up some background noise and had a bit of echo but will get you through a call when needed.


Connectivity

Pairing was simple, just a normal Bluetooth pairing, sadly no NFC pairing here which would be a welcome addition but at this price point is expected. Once paired they stayed connected and had no issues with cutting out. The range is yet another brilliant feature, I could leave my phone on one side of my house and walk all the way to the other side without it dropping out, or leave it in my back garden and go a fair bit down the street before it disconnected. A few measly walls will not stop these monsters.


In the box

Included in the box is the usual flurry of paperwork, a 3.5 mm audio cable, a micro USB cable and a soft touch carry bag to keep them safe.







In conclusion these are a pair of great-sounding, incredible-feeling and long-lasting headphones. At this price point you won't find anything better, at higher price points you might even still consider these. Soundcore have really set the bar high here.


If you want to get pair for yourself click the link below:

https://amzn.to/2VAutaM


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