The 7 Best Headphones for Movies and TV in 2022

by SoundGearLab-Team.   Last Updated On September 12th, 2022.
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Watching movies and television on your headphones more and more often means you’ll want the perfect pair. If you think picking the right headphones for movies and tv, with hundreds to choose from, a variety of styles, and a wide range in price, is a real pain in the butt, I hear you.

That’s why we’ve put together this list of the best headphones for movies and TV available this year.

Table of Contents
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Comparison of the Best Headphones for Movies and TV

Best Open-back Wired Headphones for Movies and TVSee On Amazon
photo of the Sennheiser HD 599Sennheiser
HD 599
Best Closed-back Headphones for Movies and TVSee On Amazon
photo of the Sennheiser RS 175 RF WirelessSennheiser
RS 175 RF Wireless
Best Budget Headphones for Movies and TVSee On Amazon
photo of the Avantree HT4189Avantree
HT4189
Best Earbud Headphones for Movies and TVSee On Amazon
photo of the Avantree HT4186Avantree
HT4186
Best Premium Headphones for Movies and TVSee On Amazon
photo of the Sennheiser RS 185 RF WirelessSennheiser
RS 185 RF Wireless
Bluetooth Headphones for Movies and TVSee On Amazon
photo of the Avantree HT41899Avantree
HT41899
Best Headphones for Movies and TV for the ElderlySee On Amazon
photo of the SIMOLIO Digital SM-824D2SIMOLIO
Digital SM-824D2

Reviews of the Best Headphones for Movies and TV

The HD 599 are the premium feeling comfort first open-back headphones for audiophiles and television viewers who put sound and style at the front of their list. If you’re looking for headphones that look and feel great with some of the most advanced sound reproduction tech on the market, these pretty puppies are for you.

See On Amazon

Sennheisers HD 599 are headphones comfortable enough for you to wear all day and stylish enough that you’ll want to wear them all day. And thanks to Sennheiser’s advanced aluminum voice coil technology and the open back, those long hours will be enjoyed with the beautiful, spacious sound you’ve come to expect from Sennheisers open back series of headphones.

Besides the style and audio quality, we think you’ll dig the versatility. These wired headphones come with two detachable cables. A 6.3 mm jack cable works on your tv, and a 3.5mm jack cable works with your phone, tablet, and personal computer. That means you can use them anywhere. Because these are wired headphones they’re likely best for people watching on either phones or laptops, otherwise you’ll need a really long wire.

What We Like
Looks

These headphones look the part.

Components

Aluminium voice coils paired with the open-back design should provide a premium listening experience.

Comfort

These headphones are lightweight, leather padded, and velour covered. You should feel comfortable watching the longest of the long movies in these.

Versatility

These wired headphones come with two detachable cables. A 6.3 mm jack cable works on your tv, and a 3.5mm jack cable works with your phone, tablet, and personal computer.

Sound Quality

The audio quality on these headphones is really fantastic.

Know Before Buying
Headband

Some reviewers noted pressure on the head from the headband after hours of continuous use.

See On Amazon

The reviews are in on the RS 175 RF, and they’re as good as they come. With a compact, ergonomic, comfortable design; sound recreation precision down to pressure levels and harmonic distortion; surround sound mode and easy-to-use design, these Sennheisers will take your television experience to the next level.

See On Amazon

Sennheiser RS 175 RF are killer closed-back headphones for movie watchers and audiophiles alike looking for an immersive entertainment experience, easy-to-use convenience, and stunning looks all in one.

Beyond all of that, we think you’ll love the battery life and also the option to add a second pair. An 18-hour long battery life and an optional second pair of headphones mean they can deliver hours of entertainment not just for you but also for a friend.

These are surround sound headphones and they come with the ability to turn this surround sound feature on and off while watching movies.

The other of the two sound listening modes is Bass-Boost Mode which will give a bit more low end punch in the ear cups.

Keep in mind that these are not Bluetooth. Instead, they are wireless headphones made exclusively for television viewing.

What We Like
Excellent Battery Life

The battery life is great – a whopping 18 hours!

Optional Second Pair

The transmitter and docking station allow the connection of two pairs of headphones at once.

Controls

Controls located directly on the headphone should make using these intuitive.

Surround Sound

These wireless headphones offer surround sound mode for even a more immersive high-quality sound.

Sound Quality

The surround sound and high-quality components help give these TV headphones great sound quality.

Know Before Buying
Wireless Transmission

These can connect from over 300 ft away, but they require a line of sight for transmission for the best connection.

Versatility

These are fabulous headphones for tv and movies. Just keep in mind they won’t work for anything else.

See On Amazon

Broad connectivity, good looks, and a reasonable price top the list of impressive specs for Avantree’s HT4189 headphones. If you’re looking for an excellent performing pair of movie-watching headphones that don’t break the bank, these are for you.

See On Amazon

Avantree is a significant competitor in the home entertainment game for a reason. These budget-friendly headphones are a great example of the quality designs and ideas coming from the company.

Thanks to “faststreaming” Bluetooth 5.0 and a low latency design that gives not only perfectly synchronized audio but also allows universal compatibility, and a host of other tech-forward features, you’ll want to use these wireless headphones nonstop.

And with a forty-hour playback time, you’ll actually be able to. Just keep in mind that when it’s time to recharge them, you’ll need a compatible USB charger.

What We Like
"Faststream" Bluetooth

You’ll get perfectly synchronized audio and visuals thanks to this low Latency Bluetooth design.

Universal Compatibility

These wireless headphones will work with every tv on the market. And your cell phone.

Playtime

40 hours of playtime between charges! Enough said.

Price

These headphones are right at the sweet spot. You’ll get killer tech but won’t break the bank.

Know Before Buying
USB Charger

Unfortunately, these headphones do not come with the required USB charger.

See On Amazon

Affordability meets ease of use and premium connectivity in these Avantree earbuds. With a 20-hour battery life and seamless connectivity from your phone to your television, these comfortable headphones should rarely be out of your ears.

See On Amazon

With the HT4186 Wireless headphones, Avantree takes everything you love about their over-the-ear wireless headphones and delivers them in a small in-ear design.

Thanks to “fastsreaming” Bluetooth 5.0 and a low latency design that not only gives perfectly synchronized audio but also allows universal compatibility, you’ll be able to use these earbuds wherever you go. And with a 20-hour battery life, you’ll actually be able to.

Just keep in mind these arent “true wireless,” as they have a cord that attaches them. You’ll also want to consider that although these are more portable and adaptable than other options, that portability and adaptability may lead to a slightly worse sound quality.

What We Like
Size

Buying audio equipment primarily for your television used to mean large over-the-ear headphones. These tiny in-the-ear buds are a nice change of pace and size.

Battery Life

A 20-hour battery life in earbuds is hard to beat.

"Faststream" Bluetooth

You’ll get perfectly synchronized audio and visuals thanks to this low Latency Bluetooth design.

Know Before Buying
True Wireless

These buds aren’t true wireless, as they have a cord connecting them to each other.

Sound Quality

If you’re used to over-the-ear headphones, keep in mind that they’ll often recreate sounds better than earbuds.

See On Amazon

Sennheiser knows audio, and with their RS 185 RF wireless headphones, they deliver the goods. Featuring a soundstage expanding open-back design, all the tech you’d expect, and a comfortable design, the RS 185’s are real first-in-class standouts.

See On Amazon

The Sennheiser RS 185 will have you transported right there, asking your friends and family to enter the Colosseum. Don’t worry, though; thanks to these headphones, they’ll definitely be entertained.

With excellent quality components, near-universal connectivity, the option to hook up multiple pairs, and audiophile-reported sound quality good enough for stand-alone music listening, this pair is a premium winner however you look at them. And speaking of looks, with a future-forward design and velour-covered ear cups, they look great too.

Unfortunately, these are not surround sound headphones – for surround sound we’d recommend the Sennheiser RS 175 RF, also featured in this article.

When purchasing these premium headphones, keep in mind that they operate via a wireless transmission. That means that they can connect from over 300 ft away, but they require a line of sight for transmission for the best connection.

You’ll also want to keep in mind that some users have reported pressure from the headband.

What We Like
Components

These headphones come with excellent quality components, including high-performance transducers.

Connectivity

Connect these digitally or via analog inputs.

Optional Second Pair

The transmitter and docking station allow the connection of two pairs of headphones at once.

Sound Quality

The excellent quality sound these reproduce means they should be great for listening to music as well.

Know Before Buying
Wireless Transmission

These can connect from over 300 ft away, but they require a line of sight for transmission for the best connection.

Headband

Some reviewers noted pressure on the head from the headband after hours of continuous use.

No Surround Sound

These are not surround sound headphones but they still sound fantastic.

See On Amazon

On top of Bluetooth 5.0, great sound, and universal compatibility, two headphones in this package mean you and a friend will have hours of easy listening ahead of you. So whether sharing a song from your cell phone, watching a movie, or gaming, this dual headphone setup should fit your needs.

See On Amazon

Avantree’s HT41899 Dual Bluetooth headphones are a reasonably priced, great-looking pair of tech-forward television watching headphones. Many television headphones come with the option to purchase multiple sets. Avantree gives you what you want without the hassle, with an extra set included.

And because both sets have Avantree’s patented “Faststream” Bluetooth low latency design, you and anyone else watching will get perfectly synchronized audio and visuals. That Bluetooth feature also offers universal compatibility, meaning you can even use these to listen to music or watch programs on your cell phone.

Keep in mind that some users may find the build lacks the premium feel they are looking for when purchasing these.

What We Like
2 Headphones

Many transmitters work with two pairs of headphones, but most make you purchase the second pair separately. Not these.

"Faststream" Bluetooth

You’ll get perfectly synchronized audio and visuals thanks to this low Latency Bluetooth design.

Universal Compatibility

These headphones will work with every tv on the market. And your cell phone.

Long-distance Pairing

You should be able to hear the tv from any location in your house thanks to Bluetooth 5.0.

Know Before Buying
Overall Quality

These headphones perform great, but you may find the build quality lacking.

See On Amazon

With these headphones, Simolio thought of it all. These headphones feature professional customized hearing protection, optional personal sound amplification, easy connectivity, and everything else you’d want or need in your home entertainment experience.

See On Amazon

If you or your loved one has difficulty hearing the television, these headphones are for you.

Designed to actually protect your hearing, to amplify sound when necessary, to be easily set up, and to be strong enough to connect to the tv from nearly anywhere in the house, these in-ear headphones are the go-to pair for someone looking for a pair that will do it all.

And with a spare battery already in them and a convenient charging split between two available charging spots, you’ll never need to worry about interrupted viewing and listening.

Just keep in mind when you purchase these that the headphone base will need to be within a few feet of the television for these to work. Although small, it may not mesh with some customers’ design choices.

What We Like
Hearing Protection

These headphones use voice highlighting and noise cancellation to dramatically reduce background noise, allowing users to hear voices at a safe volume.

Sound Amplification

A personal sound amplification button allows a hard-of-hearing person to temporarily hear while someone in the room is talking.

Spare Battery

These headphones are equipped with an extra battery, allowing uninterrupted viewing.

Multiple Format Support

These headphones will work with most televisions on the market running optical, RCA, or 3.5 mm / AUX audio outputs.

Long-distance Pairing

You should be able to hear the tv from up to 100 feet away with these.

Know Before Buying
Headphone Base

The headphone base will need to be within a few feet of the television for these to work.

See On Amazon

Headphones for Movies and Television vs. Music Headphones

If you know your amazon delivery driver’s first name and rising sign, you may be asking yourself if another set of headphones really needs to come down the pipeline. Your drawers are already full of gadgets, after all.

Well, the good news is, a good pair of wireless headphones for tv and movies should also work for music. So, if you purchase a pair with all of your entertainment options in mind, you’ll be happy with what you get and shouldn’t need another delivery.

The bad news is, though, that compatibility doesn’t always work the other way. That means if you have a pair of headphones you purchased exclusively for music, although they may work for television and movies, you won’t always be pleased with the results.

Here’s why:

Headphones designed exclusively for music listening often lack features that make television listening pleasing. Sometimes they even lack the flexible connectivity required that makes it even possible, period.

See, televisions, especially older models, often require particular Wireless compatibility. Wireless headphone tech can be Bluetooth but isn’t always. Some models do rely on Bluetooth, some use Infrared (IR), and others use Radio Frequency (RF).

So if you’re getting a pair of headphones to use with your television as well as other devices like tablets and cell phones, you’ll want to find a pair that actually works on all devices.

Beyond pure adaptable compatibly, there are other things to consider when looking at a pair of headphones optimized for a wide variety of entertainment, like size and comfort and noise-canceling ability.

If you’re curious about other specific things to look for, check out the list below.

headphone on table, watching TV

How To Pick The Best Headphones for Movies and TV

There are a ton of options when it comes to the perfect headphones. Here are a few things to consider.

Versatility/Connectivity

As mentioned above, headphones for your television will often require a specific kind of connectivity.

You’ll want to choose between an RF connection, IF connection, or Bluetooth. Make sure to double-check your televisions specifications and also make sure you consider what other ways and other devices you’ll want to use your headphones with and on.

Whichever connectivity you end up using, you’ll almost certainly want to use wireless headphones rather than wired ones while watching movies (or watching TV).

RF

RF (radio frequency) wireless headphones transmit sound from your television using a Stereo frequency modulation system.

A benefit of RF wireless headphones is their extended range. You’ll be able to hear the television from almost anywhere in your house with an RF connection, and it’ll be a reliable connection at that.

A drawback of RF headphones is the way they connect. To connect a pair of RF headphones to a device, the device will need an RCA audio output or a headphone jack. That means they’re a good choice if your television doesn’t support Bluetooth. Just keep in mind that with the limited connectivity, these will most likely be exclusive television headphones.

IR

IR (infrared) are wireless headphones that rely on line of sight infrared technology to transmit audio data. That means for IF headphones to work, you’ll need to be able to see the transmitter from where you’re listening.

The benefit of these headphones, ironically, is signal strength. Although you need a line of sight for them to work, if you do have that line of sight, these headphones will stay connected and offer completely private listening with no interference from other radio signals.

A clear drawback from IF headphones is that line of sight technology. Besides needing the line of sight, you’ll also need to stay close to the transmitter.

Bluetooth

Bluetooth technology has a well-documented history outlining its progressive, impressive improvement over the years.

Although some newer TVs come, Bluetooth enabled, pairing Bluetooth headphones with most televisions today will require a Bluetooth adapter. These adapters not only allow you to connect your headphones to your televisions but also to your game systems and even some car stereos.

That ease of connection with all devices and the continuous technology improvements make wireless Bluetooth headphones a strong contender for busy professionals looking for headphones that will do it all.

A drawback, though, with wireless Bluetooth headphones is latency. You won’t notice it with pure audio, but an audio delay over a great movie or even during a meeting can be genuinely annoying.

The key here is to ensure that you get a pair of wireless Bluetooth headphones with the low-latency AptX codec – otherwise, you’ll be pretty frustrated with the lag.

Surround Sound

The best wireless headphones for watching movies will offer surround sound. However, not many headphones do. If you’re interested in this feature, be sure to check reviews or descriptions of the product before buying.

Design

With any headphones, including those meant for television, you’ll want to consider the pair’s design.

Open back

Open-back headphones are designed to allow audio to escape and also to let ambient noise be heard by the listener. So if you need to stay aware of your surroundings or don’t like the feeling of complete isolation, go for these.

And don’t worry about audio quality. Many Open back headphone fans believe the airy design actually allows for a better, more precise, and spacious soundstage.

Closed-back

Closed-back headphones are designed to isolate the listener from their surroundings. That means a more immersive experience for the listener and a quieter experience for anyone else in the room.

If you have roommates or you’re looking for a truly immersive experience, go with these.

If you’re looking for an even more immersive experience, consider closed-back headphones that also offer noise-canceling or noise isolation.

Earbuds

With the development of smaller batteries and better Bluetooth, Earbud technology has come leaps and bounds in the last few years.

If you’re looking for a pair of headphones to truly do it all in, many times, earbuds are the way to go. Just make sure, if you’re planning on using them for movies and television, you get a premium pair. Small speakers and components will mean you might find the sound recreation lacking. However, a premium pair should come with design features and quality materials that bridge the audio experience gap.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use wired headphones for watching movies and TV?

It’s not really recommended. Although you can absolutely use wired headphones for entertainment purposes, the convenience and quality of wireless Bluetooth headphones make them a better option.

What’s the difference between surround sound and stereo?

Surround sound is more immersive; it takes the traditional two-channel stereo and adds in additional channels to create a wider, more expansive feeling of ‘being there.’ This surround sound feature exists in many headphones meant for watching television and movies.

Do I need a Bluetooth transmitter to use my Bluetooth headphones on my TV?

Yes, if you want the wireless headphones to communicate with both your television and any other devices you plan on using at the same time. A Bluetooth transmitter will allow headphone’s connectivity to be extended beyond its range limitations. You should, however, check to see if your TV has a built in Bluetooth transmitter.

Are gaming headsets good for movies?

Although most gaming headsets are designed with practicality in mind more than sound quality or comfort, some of the high-end models are actually perfect for watching movies. These sorts of headphones come with a built-in microphone and some even have virtual 7.1 surround sound. That said, if you’re looking for something comfortable enough to wear while watching a 3-hour movie, you might want to look elsewhere.

Can you use wireless headphones to watch movies and TV?

Yes, wireless headphones are very convenient for movies and TV. Wireless Bluetooth technology allows you to connect easily to your television, which means that you can enjoy hours of entertainment without the inconvenience of wires getting in your way.

Should I use open-back or closed-back wireless headphones for TV?

It really comes down to your personal preference. For a more immersive experience, go with open-back wireless headphones. These models recreate audio and sound in a way that seems like it’s happening around you rather than to you. However, open-back headphones often let in external noise, which can be distracting or lead to safety concerns.

If you want to use wired open-back headphones, I personally recommend the Philips Fidelio X2HR which is very comfortable and delivers more natural audio which is great for watching movies.

Are headphones or earbuds better for watching TV?

Headphones are typically the better choice here, as they can offer a higher quality of sound—especially with the addition of 7.1 surround sound—and are more comfortable to wear for extended periods of time. They also tend to have better passive noise-cancellation properties than earbuds do.

Is extra bass good for watching movies?

Although it sounds counterintuitive, extra bass can actually be a bad thing when watching movies or television. The problem is that this overwhelming amount of bass tends to drown out the finer details in dialogue and music, which are important for maintaining an immersive experience.

Is Virtual 7.1 surround sound good for watching movies?

Virtual 7.1 surround sound is incredibly good for watching movies, but it won’t be quite as immersive as the real thing due to its audio recreation. Virtual 7.1 surround sound uses digital processing that can recreate an expansive soundscape around you—and headphones with virtual surround sound are often perfect for gaming, too.

Conclusion

Best Open-back Wired Headphones for Movies and TV
Best Closed-back Headphones for Movies and TV
Best Budget Headphones for Movies and TV

No matter the device or your entertainment choice, you’ll want to consider the same things when it comes to the best headphones for watching TV. You’ll want to look for a pair of headphones that sound good, look good, feel good, are easy to connect, and in a lot of cases, don’t break the bank.

Depending on the device you use them with, you’ll also want to make sure you have considered your connection options.

Even with all the info, with so many to choose from and so many good options out there, picking a great pair can still feel like an uphill battle.

If you need more help, check out the product reviews below.