If you’re looking for the best budget earphones, you’ve definitely come to te right place when visiting AliExpress. There isn’t any other webshop in the world where you can find so many great cheap earphones. What are the best budget earphones?
It’s a jungle out there. Let this be your guide to the best budget earphones from China.
There is an insane amount of budget earphones on AliExpress and GearBest, but not all of them are good. In fact; the quality of the IEM’s listed differs from insanely good value for the money to absolutely horrible.
I’ve bought and tested over fifty Chinese cheap earphones from AliExpress, GearBest and Amazon. I can now safely recommend the best budget earphones under 10, 15, 20, 25 to 50 dollar. I already wrote a blog about my personal favourite earphones for under 5, 10 and 25 euros, by the way.
Updated July 20, 2019: I now added personal favourites in each price class
This article is a summary of many of the great Chinese earphones you can find on AliExpress, GearBest and Amazon. The general rule of thumb is AliExpress and GearBest are cheaper, but Amazon could save you around two to three weeks of delivery time. With the links is this article, I only refer to shops I trust.
Before we move on to the recommendations; some things to know:
Why it is great to order earphones from China
- Earphones/ IEM’s from China have an insane price quality ratio.
- Materials and build quality are often better than Western alternatives.
- Sound quality is often A LOT better than Western alternatives — if you know where to look.
- Even the cheapest earphones listed in this blog, deliver a more refined and detailed sound than for example, the Apple Earpods.
Why it is tricky to order earphones from China
- Waiting times for delivery can be up to three weeks.
- You will likely not know the brands in this list — however: you don’t pay for brands either. ;-)
- Getting a full refund is difficult, and sending an IEM back is near impossible.
Tips to optimize the sound of your earphones:
- Do you have Spotify or another streaming service? Make sure you set the audio quality to the highest setting — such as Extreme quality in Spotify.
- Always test the different sized ear tips that come with the earphone. When you hear the bass in a good way and the earphone is comfortable, your seal is good.
- Try experimenting with different ear tips for different sound results too. Ear tips with wide holes will boost the bass, ear tips with smaller holes often the higher tones.
So, let’s start this guide of the best Chinese earphones on AliExpress or GearBest which you can buy safely. These are the best cheap earphones on AliExpress:
Best Chinese earphones under 10 dollar:
- EZaudio D4: Detailed sounding earphones with great attention to vocals and instruments like guitars. The bass is purely supportive and doesn't dominate the sound. [AliExpress]
- KZ ATE (Personal favourite): A warm sounding earphone with a nice bass and an airy feel to it; delivering lovely details up close and further away from you. Suitable for all genres. [GearBest] [AliExpress]
- KZ EDR1: A true allrounder. Warm sound, smooth bass, mids and highs. You can never go wrong with this one. [GearBest] [AliExpress]
- UiiSii HM7: Impresses with a solid, smooth sound. And… has a nice little scent to it. Really. [GearBest] [AliExpress]
Best Chinese earphones 10-25 dollar:
- Boarseman CX98: Suited for analytical listeners; with clear and crisp mids and highs, and a supportive bass. [AliExpress]
- CCA C04: A bass lovers earphone, with much emphasis and good details in the bass, and a bit toned down mids and highs. [AliExpress]
- DZAT DF-10: Warm and bassy, the DF-10 still delivers some sparkle in the higher sounds. Come in wood — which looks great. [AliExpress]
- Einsear T2: Warm sounding, with a quick bass and clear and crisp vocals. Very suitable for almost all genres. [AliExpress]
- KZ ED16: Delivers a full bodied bass and mids, and has huge airyness to it, making the sound feel like you're in a stadium. [AliExpress]
- KZ ED9: Delivers an amazing quantity and quality of higher tones, still top notch for this price. [GearBest] [AliExpress]
- KZ ZSA: More neutral sounding than other KZ's, and due to the small size they fit great. Even for sleeping or under helmet purposes. [AliExpress]
- KZ ZSN: Great soundstage, excellent placement of instruments, crystal clear vocals and a delicate bass. Recommended for everybody — beginner or expert. [AliExpress]
- Nicehck EP10: Like Apple Earpods, but made from metal and in stylish black or grey. For bass lovers, with lots of bass quantity and quality and an airy sound. Less suited for vocals. [AliExpress]
- Senfer DT6 (Personal favourite): Wow — amazing soundstage and detail, a nice combination of a warm and bright sound, with a good bass support and without becoming tiresome. It gets better when you buy a different mmcx-cable. [AliExpress]
- Tennmak Pro: With an addictive bass, pleasant warm sound and a natural feeling soundstage, this earphone will please many. [AliExpress]
- TRN V20: A neutral-like sound with a solid amount of detail, though with a boosted fat bass. Makes most genres and songs sound fun. [AliExpress]
- UiiSii CM5: A solid performing allrounder with a warm sound signature. [AliExpress]
- VJJB K4S: Real lookers available in three types of wood, with a bass heavy and warm sound. Great for electronic dance music. [AliExpress]
Best Chinese earphones 25-35 dollar:
- Alwup UPC630 (also available as Malloom Water Drop and Timmkoo C630): A huge amount of details in higher tones and instrumental positioning combined with a subtle bass. Perfect for classical and jazzy pieces. Sounds better with an AMP than on your phone though. [AliExpress]
- KZ ZSR: A great and engaging sounding earphone, with a delicious bass, a sweet amount of detail in mids and highs and an ‘airy’ sound. [GearBest] [AliExpress]
- Moondrop Crescent: The most neutral and balanced sounding budget earphone you can get. No boosted bass, mids or highs: everything is in perfect, natural balance here. [AliExpress]
- Tiandirenhe TD R (Personal favourite): These beautiful looking ear diamonds deliver a full, airy sound, with a great soundstage and solid amounts of detail. [AliExpress]
- Urbanfun HiFi: Don’t let the name deceive you. This is not a bass heavy earphone — it actually delivers an impressive neutral and detailed sound. [AliExpress]
Best Chinese earphones 35-60 dollar:
- Artiste DC1: A true fun sounding IEM you can listen to for hours. Addictive and uplifting bass, full bodied mids and with a solid build. One of the very few you can wear cable down. [AliExpress]
- KZ ZS10 Pro: Deep sub bass, great detail retrieval, excellent sound stage and instrument placement, and a more honest tonality than most older KZ models. Top notch. [AliExpress]
- RevoNext QT2s (Personal favourite): The sweet spot between a layered, deep bass and a warm, full yet clear sound in the mids and highs. An incredible performer for this price. [AliExpress]
- Senfer EN900: Original looking and very bright sounding earphones, with a deep bass, clear vocals and mids and lots of detail. [AliExpress]
- Senfer XBA 6in1: This other IEM of Senfer has a deep bass and vivid and clear mids as well, ideal for vocal songs. [AliExpress]
- Tin Audio T2: The most neutral sounding and balanced earphone you can buy for this price. Constructed in metal, neat packaging and if you must, you can strengthen the bass greatly by closing the bass hole. [AliExpress]
- ZhiYin Z5000: Put these in your ears with the stock tips and you’re overwhelmed by the dark bassy sound these have. Put longer eartips in them (sold loose), and the sound becomes engaging, with a quick and full bass, amazing airiness and sweet details. [AliExpress]
— Last updated: July 20, 2019. Removed the older RevoNext QT2 now the QT2s is in this list, removed the TRN V80 for it's surpassed by others; added the Tiandirenhe TD R and KZ ZS10 Pro. I added personal favourites in every price range.—
Disclaimer: affiliate links
I put an insane amount of hours in testing and comparing these earpones. I hope to make searching for great Chinese earphones a little bit easier for you.
Planning to buy one of the earphones listed? Please consider doing it via my buying links. These are affiliate links from AliExpress, GearBest or Amazon, from which I’ll gain a little percentage of the price. I only put links on products I truly recommend. Buying a product via such a link won’t cost you extra, yet it will support me a bit in my research on affordable audio. ❤
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Also check out my review site on the best True Wireless Earphones!
I’d also love to hear from you what you’ve chosen. Please share in the comments, or contact me: bart @ tekstmeister.nl.