Earbuds are amazing headphones. They are small, lightweight, portable, and allow us to take our music or content with us everywhere we go, even while running or exercising.
But the downside of earbuds is that their small size and compact parts tend to make them less durable and more prone to breaking. If you’re tired of buying new earbuds because your old ones keep breaking, check out the following article to learn about a few of the best heavy duty earbuds on the market today.
While the earbuds that came with your device have thin non-reinforced cables and weak headphone casings, these earbuds are made to last. They feature stronger housing and better materials.
While there are no completely indestructible earbuds, the following models can stand up to being dropped, pulled, and thrown in a gym bag. There are also models which stand up to sweat, moisture, and the elements. So if you’re tired of replacing earbuds, check the following models out. You’re certain to find one which is perfect for your needs and budget.
Most Durable Earbuds for Every Budget
What Makes Earbuds Last?
The two most important elements are the quality of the materials used and the quality of construction.
Stronger casings such as metal, aluminum, and durable plastics offer more protection than cheap plastic designs. The quality of the cable is also important. While some have thin, cheap cables, others feature stronger wire which often reinforced with additional rubber, Kevlar, or other materials. Some are also designed to be tangle resistant. Using braided wire is also a great way to make cables stronger.
How the headphones are put together is just as important as the individual components. If the connection between the wire and the earbud isn’t strong and reinforced, the earbuds will break no matter how good the headphone casing and wire may be. The quality of the 3.5mm jack connection and the quality of the connection from cable to earbud are two of the most common problem areas. Rugged, dependable earbuds will feature extra attention in the construction of these areas.
If you use your earbuds for exercise you should definitely own a sweat proof pair. After all, even the most indestructible set of earbuds will stop working if they are not sweat resistant. Fortunately, there are many different types of earbuds on the market that are sweat proof and weather resistant.
Another factor to consider is the warranty, as well as the quality of customer support. Does the company stand by its earbuds? Will they quickly replace broken earbuds without any hassle? A good company stands by its products and knows that customers are the life blood of their organization. Check out the warranty coverage before making a final purchase.
6 Most Durable Earbuds Reviewed
Here are six of our favorite earbuds that last. Different categories are included such as best budget, best overall, and best audiophile so you can find an ideal set for your needs.
ActionPie VJJB-V1S (Most Durable Budget Earbuds)
ActionPie VJJB-V1S earbuds feature durable construction, powerful neodymium magnets, deep bass, and a great overall sound at an incredibly affordable price. This makes them our top pick for best pair of durable budget earbuds.
The VJJB-V1S features a wide variety of eartips for the perfect fit. Once you find the right sized eartips, they are a very comfortable pair of earbuds to wear.
For a pair of earbuds under twenty dollars, the ActionPie VJJB-V1S features an excellent build quality with reinforced strain reliefs at the 3.5mm jack, as well as where the two earbud cables join. These are two areas where shorts and breaks are likely to occur. The strain relief goes a long way in preventing this.
In addition, the earbuds themselves feel well made and durable, especially considering their low price.
There is plenty of power on tap with the ActionPie VJJB-V1S. With neodymium iron boron magnets and a high performance dynamic driver system, this set of earbuds provides lots of volume and plenty of bass. The bass is not as tight and defined as in more expensive units I have reviewed. Still, considering the price, this is a great set of earbuds with enough bass on hand to make them exciting to listen to.
The midrange is surprisingly clear and not muddy at all. The high end frequencies also sound good considering the ultra-low price. They may get a little sibilant on material that is already on the sibilant side, but with most material the highs sound smooth and not brittle.
The ActionPie VJJB-V1S also features a microphone which allows you to talk hands free on your smartphone. The mic, while nothing incredible, does a fine job on calls and is easy to understand.
Overall, the ActionPie VJJB-V1S is a great choice for buyers who are looking for a rugged and durable set of earbuds on a budget. While not as great sounding as some of the higher end models, they are a step up from the earbuds which came with your device and are much stronger.
Shure SE215 (Best Overall Durable Earbuds)
In addition to being highly durable and sweatproof, Shure SE215 earbuds are also incredibly comfortable, offer excellent noise isolation, and sound amazing. This makes them our overall best pick for durable earbuds.
If you’re not used to in ear monitors, you may have to spend a little time with them and find the right fit. This type of design doesn’t feel exactly like normal ear buds. They’re not better or worse, just different. Once you get a feel for them, however, they are very comfortable to wear and stay in your ears regardless of your level of movement.
Shure makes high performance products for stage use by professional musicians the world over. Much of that mindset was put into the Shure SE215 in ear monitors. They are made with heavy duty, but lightweight casings that make them ultra-durable but also comfortable. In addition, their sweatproof design makes them ideal for exercise and gym use.
A great feature about these durable earbuds is that the wires are detachable and can be easily replaced if something goes wrong. This is a feature you don’t see often on earbuds, especially in this price range. I also like the build quality of the wires and the L shaped plug, which is less likely to be broken when bumped or hit.
Another amazing feature is the built in passive noise reduction. There is no active noise cancelling but the design and proper fit of the headphones reduce outside noise dramatically, making them a great choice when you need some peace and quiet. They’re also great on stage where the blocking of other instruments is a must.
Overall, the sound is amazing, not just for the price range, but in general. I found the sound to be flat, meaning all of the frequencies from the highest highs to the lowest lows are close to the same volume. This gives you a clear picture of what the audio is supposed to sound like.
Because of their flat response they are probably not ideal for bassheads. I don’t mean to say they are lacking in bass. For me they have plenty. The bass just isn’t emphasized or boosted to the degree that some people prefer.
If you’re looking for a great entry level to low mid-priced pair of in ear monitors, you can’t go wrong with the Shure SE215s. They are comfortable, incredibly well built, sweat proof, and have a sound that rivals that of much more expensive units.
Sennheiser IE80 (Best Audiophile Grade Durable Earbuds)
With amazing build quality, comfortable wearability, and audiophile level sound, the Sennheiser IE80s are a great choice for anyone wanting a rugged and heavy duty pair of audiophile earbuds.
(Click here if you’re looking for audiophile over ear headphones)
If you’re not used to this type of earbud, they may take a bit of getting used to. This doesn’t at all mean that they are not comfortable. They’re actually very comfortable. They also come with a number of eartip sizes, as well as ear wings so you can find your perfect fit.
The IE80s feature the build quality and premium design Sennheiser is known for. With brushed metal and durable plastic construction, the IE80s also feature detachable and easily replaceable cables in case something goes wrong. Thick rubber strain reliefs plus a heavy duty L shaped plug connector make these a pair that last for a long time.
The sound quality is absolute incredibly and will please even the most discerning listener. The sound is flat and detailed, but powerful as well. The highs are super clear with some of the most brilliant and smooth high frequencies I have heard in an in ear monitor.
The bass is not hyped or boosted, but it’s clean and powerful. I personally prefer flat bass frequencies and the IE80 does not disappoint.
The mids are equally impressive with a clear, vivid, and distinct quality that lets all of the instruments have a since of immediacy. I was also impressed with the width of the stereo image of these earbuds.
The Sennheiser IE80 earbuds are ideal for anyone wanting the highest quality sound and the most durable construction available.
Although more expensive than many models, I still find them to be a great value with a build and sound quality that is far beyond their price.
Brainwavz M2 (Most Bang for the Buck in a Durable Earbud)
With an aluminum casing and thick wires, the Brainwavz M2 is a durable set of earbuds. They are also very comfortable to wear and a have a great sound for the price.
I found this set to be incredibly comfortable to wear, but found the lightweight casing and the heavier wires require that you find the right fit in order for them to be comfortable and not fall out. Fortunately, there are different sized eartips available so you can choose the right fit for your particular needs.
With lightweight aluminum casing and thick, flexible cables, the Brainwavz M2 is a rugged set of earbuds. There is also an L shaped 3.5mm plug which makes the plug connection less prone to breakage and shorts. The cables are thicker than on many units but are flexible and lightweight enough that they don’t get in the way.
I was a little disappointed that they aren’t sweatproof or weather resistant, as I feel many who are looking for a budget set of earbuds are going to want to use them in every aspect of their daily lives, including while exercising.
The amazing sound quality of the Brainwavz M2 was a large part of why they were chosen as the earbud with the most bang for the buck. Sound wise, they hold their own with much more expensive earbuds.
The bass is a little hyped but I wouldn’t go as far as to call them bass oriented earbuds. They have a sound that is well rounded and great for many types of music.
In addition to the slightly hyped bass, the mids are clear and dynamic. Plus the bass doesn’t overpower the mids or muddy them up, a great quality in this price range for sure. I also like the highs which are not brittle or harsh.
The Brainwavz M2 doesn’t offer additional features such as a built in mic or other bells and whistles. Still, their incredible build quality and sound make them a great set of earbuds for the price.
Tweedz Earbuds (Best for Audiobooks and/or Podcasts)
Tweeds headphones are marketed as long lasting durable earbuds available in many colors using braided wires to be the most tangle-free, durable headphones around.
Tweedz earbuds come with three sizes of soft silicon eartips so you can achieve the perfect fit. I really like the feel of the silicon eartips which are comfortable in your ears for hours at a time.
Tweeds earbuds are made with durable nylon fabric which is built to last. The 100% nylon fabric is also braided which makes the cable less prone to tangling, which in turn makes the cables less likely to develop shorts or breaks.
The braided cables were inspired by the ultra-durable braided guitar cables many professionals prefer to use. The Tweedz earbuds also feature additional support at weak points, making them even more durable.
These earbuds have a sound that is balanced and neutral, with no hyped bass. That’s not to say that there is no bass, it’s just not hyped. This is why they’re such a great choice for audiobooks and podcasts.
Audiobook lovers often listen to books for hours at a time and bass heavy earbuds can make this long listening experience uncomfortable and annoying. When I listen to audiobooks and podcasts, I want a neutral earbud that is comfortable to wear, features a good level of outside noise attenuation, and offers neutral bass, clear intelligible mids, and crisp highs. In this, the Tweedz earbuds excel.
Not just ideal for audiobooks and podcasts, the Tweedz earbuds are great for just about any kind of music, providing you are not looking for basshead type earbuds. I would have no problem listening to any genre of music on them.
Additional features include a built in mic for making and receiving calls, as well as an inline remote which allows you to accept or end calls; play, pause, and skip tracks; and give voice commands to your smartphone.
Another feature is the ten exciting colors to choose from. The number of colors and the eye catching braided cables will get you noticed when you are out and about.
Considering the built to last construction, neutral sound quality, and excellent wearing comfort, the Tweedz Earbuds are a great model to consider, especially for lovers of audiobooks and podcasts.
RHA MA750 (Another Quality, Built to Last Earbud)
I found the RHA MA750 earbuds to be comfortable to wear, but I also realize that their over the ear fit may take some getting used to for some. This is not because they are uncomfortable, but because most people aren’t used to this type of design. Make sure you don’t wear them incorrectly, however, because if you do they will certainly be uncomfortable.
The RHA MA750 is a top performer in terms of durability and is made of heavy duty, durable aluminum. In fact, all of the hardware is made of metal.
They also feature tangle free cabling with a thick rubber coating. Plus, the 3.5 mm plug is reinforced with a strain relief, as is the headphone casing side. You can just tell by holding them that they are one of the best durable earbuds on the market today.
In addition to their excellent build quality, the RHA MA750 features amazing sound quality which can hold its own against much more expensive earbuds.
The earbuds have a slightly hyped bass response that, while somewhat prominent, is not at basshead level. The low end is deep, rich, and works well with many different kinds of music.
The midrange has a detailed and clear quality that doesn’t sound colored to my ears. This is unusual on a set of earbuds in this price range. I also found that the extended bass didn’t get in the way of the midrange frequencies.
The highs are clear and crisp, although a little bit subdued. I personally like this as I feel so many earbuds have too much high end. But this is all a matter of preference. If you prefer a slightly warmer sounding earbud, this model is a great choice.
The stereo image is also impressive considering the price range. The separation of the sound stage and the clarity of the mid frequencies make for an enjoyable listening experience.
The RHA M750 doesn’t have a built in mic or remote but you can step up to the RHA M750i model which does offer these features. Please note, however, that the M750i is only designed for iOS devices. As of now, there is no Android offering.
I also found the passive noise isolation of this headphone to be excellent as well. There are several choices of eartips which come with the earbuds and once you find a snug fit for your ears, the passive noise reduction is really good.
I don’t like having to turn my music up in order to drown out outside noise. I prefer for my earbuds do that for me. Once I found the correct sized eartips, I had no issues whatsoever with outside noise.
With its amazingly durable construction, excellent sound quality, wearing comfort, and effective passive noise isolation, the RHA M750 is an earbud set worth considering. Their build quality and overall sound competes with models which are double the price or more.