Headphones are a perfect way to experience your television programs and videos without disturbing anyone around you, whether you like to watch late-night TV shows when your family or roommates are sleeping, or simply stay in an apartment with paper-thin walls. Not all headphones are made equally too, even the best-sounding headphones may be almost worthless to watch Television if they have trouble with lip sync.
Although wired headphones practically guarantee a latency-free listening experience, getting a long cable running from the TV through your couch may be quite the trouble. Bluetooth headphones are much more convenient but can have audio lag problems.
Thankfully, there are a number of wireless headphones whose latency is low enough to be suitable for watching TV. Most are built with gamers in mind, but there are a variety of versions still dedicated to television. See also our recommendations on the best soundbars for your TV, the best portable mini projector, and the best Dolby Atmos soundbars.
10 Must-Have Wireless Headphones
1. Best Wireless Headphones For TV: SteelSeries Arctis Pro wireless
The SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless is the best wireless headphones we’ve tested for TV yet. Many of the things that make for a better gaming experience even apply while watching TV, so all the boxes are checked off by these headphones.
Thanks to their special wireless transmitter which is compatible with a broad variety of home theater setups, they link wirelessly with no visible audio lag. They can also connect simultaneously to a Bluetooth unit, and you can combine the audio from both your mobile and your Screen.
In addition to providing a low latency connection, the wireless transmitter also serves as a battery charging point and a headphone personalization center. You can EQ effectively on the transmitter, which is very useful, the way the headphones sound and control the volume levels of the various input sources.
It even charges the removable battery of the headphones, and because they come with two batteries, you can hold one charged while the other is in use.
While these headphones have a slightly less gamer-centric look than many other gaming headphones that we’ve reviewed, they’re still quite bulky, especially since their microphone isn’t detachable.
For certain people too, the headband frame can be too low and may become awkward at the end of a long movie if the headrests are against the frame. The 2019 Astro A50 Gen 4 Wireless has a more ergonomic style that many people find more convenient, but are not as feature-packed as the SteelSeries, which are the perfect headphones for home theatre.
2. Best Dedicated TV Headphones: Sennheiser RS 185 RF Wireless
The Sennheiser RS 185 RF is the best-dedicated TV headphones we’ve tested until now. They aren’t as flexible as the other choices on this list because they won’t fit for all of your mobile devices, but they’re some of the best wireless headphones we’ve reviewed for TV if you only want anything for your home theatre. They’re comfortable, well-built, and easy to use once all of them have been set up and ready to go.
They have a well-balanced sound in the treble range with a bit of extra emphasis to help clarify voices and dialogue. Since this model has been around for quite a while, these headphones still use AAA batteries for power, but they do come with rechargeable batteries as their wireless transmitter also doubles as a charging station.
You can expect around 22 hours of battery life, and leave them set up next to your TV while they charge, which is convenient.
These dedicated TV headphones have an open-back design, meaning they have a larger, more open sound, but hardly isolate any sound. Although this can be a concern if you’re searching for anything that isn’t going to annoy people in the same place, it’s pretty good if you only want to watch your favorite movie without setting up a loudspeaker, making them one of the better movie headphones.
3. CLOSED-BACK ALTERNATIVE: SENNHEISER RS 165 RF WIRELESS
Whether you’re searching for dedicated TV headphones but want one for greater separation, grab the RS 165 RF from Sennheiser. They don’t sound as open as the Sennheiser RS 185 RF Wireless, because of their closed-back nature, but they emit less sound and block more noise. They usually have a more bass-heavy sound profile which would be enjoyed by lovers of action movies.
But they seem to sound different to various people because of the way they match-so you may hear less bass than anyone else wearing the same pair. Also, the stand has only a regular line-in audio jack, so it may not be compatible with all home theater setups.
Go for the RS 185 if isolation is less of a concern, but if you’re concerned about bothering those around you, go for the RS 165.
4. Best Bluetooth TV Headphones: Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2 Wireless
The Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2 are the best Bluetooth headphones researchers tested so far for TV. While Bluetooth doesn’t generally make the best headphones for watching TV due to audio lag issues, these headphones use a technology called aptX-LL that helps reduce latency.
Users need to buy a specialized Bluetooth adapter that supports aptX-LL and is consistent with your TV to make them work, but they provide a very well-rounded listening experience once you get everything set up.
These speakers have a well-balanced sound profile that can pull out your favorite action movie’s thump and rumble, without muffling voices. Their battery capacity is one of the best we’ve seen yet, not only boasting a whopping 30-hour battery life but also several power-saving features such as an auto-off timer and smart pause mode. They can also connect to two devices at the same time, meaning you can make phone calls without needing to unpair your TV which is awesome.
Even when their active noise canceling feature (ANC) will help with your basic daily noises, if you live next to a busy street and are continuously interrupted by the sound of outdoor traffic it will not do much.
The Sennheiser Momentum 3 Wireless is doing a much better job of blocking the low hum of passing cars, but their battery does not last as long, and they are much more expensive. All-in-all, the Plantronics offer the best value for the price and are easily recommended.
5. Best Budget TV Headphones: Logitech G433 Gaming Headset
The Logitech G433 is the finest budget TV headphones we’ve reviewed so far. Despite being wired, they are comfortable gaming headphones with a surprisingly versatile, lightweight design, especially since their microphone can be detached. If you’re waiting to watch TV from the couch with these headphones, you might need an audio cable extension, but you’ll still be getting good bang for your buck.
They have a remarkably excellently-balanced sound that matches considerably more expensive headphones, and their network device helps to ensure a viewing experience that is latency-free. They also come with a remote in-line that helps you to monitor the sound, which is of extra benefit when the main TV is just out of reach.
As a bonus, if you happen to have your home theater setup set up around a Laptop, you can also use the Logitech G HUB program to EQ as they sound and create presets for the various kinds of movies you need.
As a drawback, these headphones emit more noise than other closed-back headphones do, which you’ll notice with a pair of open-back headphones without any of the soundstage advantages. So if you watch a movie while your co-workers are trying to focus on something else, they may still overhear and distract.
An inexpensive pair of wireless earbuds with aptX-LL like the AUKEY Latitude Wireless should do the trick because they barely leak any noise at all, but they’re much less secure so you’ve got to keep an eye on the battery life.
6. OPEN-BACK ALTERNATIVE: PHILIPS SHP9500
Whether you want to watch movies with the more comfortable quality of the open-back headphones but don’t want to invest a lot on luxury audiophile headphones, get the Philips SHP9500.
These are less flexible than the Logitech G433 Gaming Headset since they have no configuration choices or extra functionality, but they are more convenient and provide a more realistic sound scene that others choose to use. They lack quite a bit of low-bass, though, so you might find action movies missing some thump and rumble.
Get the Logitech if you’re searching for anything more portable but you’ll want to opt with the Philips if you like the feel of open-back headphones.
7. Sennheiser RS 195 RF Wireless Headphones Review
The Sennheiser RS 195 are decently convenient home theater headphones that don’t enhance much on older models, unfortunately. In general they look poorer than the RS 165 but have a marginally stronger tone than the RS 175.
They do have a wider wireless spectrum but the RS series has the lowest latency. This makes their asking price rather unjustified, especially when contrasted with previous versions.
8. Astro A50 Gen 4 Wireless Headphones Review
The Astro A50 Gen 4 is great, sounding good gaming headphones too. They maintained the same design as the previous Astro A50 Wireless, but with slight improvements such as improved padding and a significantly smaller base station. Just the base station may use such headphones wirelessly, which provides reduced latency.
We have a nice sound, so if you perform in a loud setting, we ‘re not going to be the ideal choice because they’re not isolating very well. We have great battery life on the underside than the prior iteration and feel sleeker.
They have a rather strong frequency response and their sound profile is balanced. Their bass is punchy and broad, with well-balanced and precise mid- and treble ranges. They won’t sound as open-back headphones, which some might prefer, but they are still very good sounding headphones for this use.
9. Sennheiser RS 175 RF Wireless Headphones Review
The Sennheiser RS 175 has the same design and higher productivity as the RS 165 but, for critical listening, it sounds a little weaker. They ‘re not doing so well with voices and instruments and they’ve got a little too much bass. They are often not flexible enough to use in clear line-of-sight of the transmitter everywhere except indoors. They ‘re relaxed on the left, and have low lag to watch movies.
10. Sennheiser Momentum 3 Wireless Headphones Review
The Sennheiser Momentum 3 Wireless are reasonable headphones that cancel noise with good audio quality and a stylish retro look. Thanks to better sound quality, a more give accurate and improved microphone, they’re a nice improvement over the Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 Wireless.
They have a good performance in sound insulation and a good amount of ambient noise is blocked. They are however quite a bit more weakened than their predecessors, which in quiet environments will not be ideal. The Momentum 3 even so are very versatile headphones with decent overall performance.
What to consider before buying wireless headphones for TV
If you’re considering wireless headphones for your TV, you should first think about why you want them over other sound options. If you live alone and want versatile headphones that can also be used with your phone or computer, Bluetooth headphones are a good choice. However, if privacy or consideration for others is important, headphones are the best option. They isolate sound, allowing you to experience loud explosions without disturbing others. While sound quality may not be as rich as with a multi-speaker system or soundbar, headphones can still replicate multi-channel soundscapes well.
Consider your most common TV uses when choosing headphones. For 4K Blu-rays, compatibility with DTS:X or Dolby Atmos is important. These sound settings create immersive, 360-degree soundscapes, allowing you to hear sounds with more precision and accuracy. For gamers, headphones with good sound placement and a quality microphone are essential for competitive gaming and clear communication with teammates.
In summary, wireless headphones are a good option if you want privacy or need to be considerate of others. They can still provide an immersive sound experience, particularly if they are compatible with DTS:X or Dolby Atmos. When choosing headphones, consider your most common TV uses, such as gaming, and look for features like sound placement and a quality microphone.
What else can I do with my wireless headphones?
Some of these wireless headphones use their own wireless signals through a unit that is plugged into your wired inputs on your TV. Headphones that use their own system, rather than the more universal Bluetooth, tend to have much lower latency. Latency is the delay between a signal being sent and received. When listening to music, latency can be annoying—it can make moving through tracks seem sluggish, for example—but it doesn’t really ruin the listening experience the way audio that doesn’t sync with a TV can. However, these plug-in receivers are not going to be as portable or adaptable to different listening situations as a Bluetooth unit will be.
Can wireless headphones replace a multi-speaker sound system?
Wireless headphones can provide an alternative to a multi-speaker sound system for certain situations. If you are looking for a private listening experience or need to be considerate of others, headphones are an excellent option. They allow you to enjoy a high-quality audio experience without disturbing those around you.
However, when it comes to creating a truly immersive sound experience, a multi-speaker sound system still has the advantage. A high-quality sound system can reproduce the full range of sound, from the lowest bass to the highest treble, and create a more accurate soundscape. With multiple speakers, you can also create a wider, more spacious soundstage, which can be particularly effective for music.
Another advantage of a multi-speaker sound system is that it can be tailored to your specific room and listening preferences. With careful placement of speakers and calibration of settings, you can optimize the sound for your space and create a truly personalized audio experience.
Are Bluetooth headphones good for watching TV?
Yes, Bluetooth headphones can be a great option for watching TV. They offer the convenience of wireless connectivity, which means you can move around without being tethered to your TV. Bluetooth headphones are also easy to connect to your TV and don’t require any additional equipment.
When it comes to sound quality, Bluetooth headphones have come a long way in recent years. Many high-end Bluetooth headphones offer excellent sound quality, with rich bass and clear highs. They can also provide a more immersive sound experience than traditional wired headphones, thanks to their support for multi-channel audio formats like Dolby Atmos.
Another advantage of Bluetooth headphones is that they can be used with other devices, such as your phone or tablet. This means you can take your headphones with you on the go and enjoy your favorite music, podcasts, and movies wherever you are.
How can I connect my headphones to my TV without Bluetooth?
If your TV doesn’t have Bluetooth connectivity, there are still several ways to connect your headphones to it:
- Wired connection: Many headphones come with a 3.5mm audio cable that can be plugged directly into your TV’s headphone jack. If your headphones don’t have a cable, you can purchase one separately.
- RCA or AUX output: If your TV has RCA or AUX output ports, you can use an RCA-to-3.5mm adapter or an AUX-to-3.5mm adapter to connect your headphones to the TV.
- Optical output: If your TV has an optical output, you can use an optical-to-3.5mm adapter to connect your headphones to the TV.
- Wireless RF or IR transmitter: Some headphones come with a wireless RF or IR transmitter that can be plugged into your TV’s headphone jack. The transmitter sends audio signals wirelessly to the headphones, allowing you to enjoy a wireless audio experience.
- Wireless TV headphones: There are also headphones specifically designed for use with TVs that come with a wireless transmitter. The transmitter connects to your TV’s audio output and sends the audio signal wirelessly to the headphones.
Our suggestions above are what we consider to be the best home theater headphones for most people to purchase at present. We factor in the price (cheaper headphones win over pricer ones if the difference isn’t worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability.