12 Best Aviation Headsets of 2019

Posted on

Are you in the market for an aviation headset, but have no idea which one to buy? You’re spoilt for choice in this marketplace so you can buy exactly what meets your requirements. We have split up the aviation headsets across 3 price categories so you can buy based on your budget.

Take a look at the buying consideration section if you’ve never bought aviation headsets before. There you’ll encounter factors such as comfort, microphone, noise reduction, brand, durability, and extra features. It’s advisable to consider every factor so that you end up with your ideal aviation headset.

We had a great time writing this buyer’s guide and are confident that you’ll learn a lot. Read until the end of the guide to have a complete overview of the aviation headset marketplace. You’ll be surprised by the amount of value for money that you can get when you know where to look.

Budget
best-budget-aviation-headset
Rugged Air RA200
4.8/5.0
Weight: 1.2 Pounds
Bluetooth: No
It has 24 decibels noise reduction and a sturdy build quality.
Check Amazon
Best Value
best-value-aviation-headset
UFQ A28
4.9/5.0
Weight: 2.17 Pounds
Bluetooth: No
Very strong noise reduction and high quality Hi-Fi speakers.
Check Amazon
Top Pick
top-value-aviation-headset
Bose A20
4.9/5.0
Weight: 0.75 Pounds
Bluetooth: Yes
Excellent comfort and competitive noise cancelation.
Check Amazon

Buying Considerations








Items by price:

Aviation Headsets Comparison Table

Best Aviation Headsets Under $100

Are you looking for budget headsets that can be used by professional pilots? Then you’ll be pleased with what the headsets in this price bracket bring to the table. Pay attention to the small details so you can tell the differences worth noting. Consider the entire list of features and you’ll end up with the headset that is a great match for your needs.

The budget aviation headsets in this price bracket don’t offer advanced features. If you’re looking for premium quality then navigate to the pricier category for a list of the top performers.

1. Best Budget: Rugged Air RA200

Rugged Air RA200View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

The Rugged Air RA200 is a high performance headset that’s ideal for buyer’s that want a reliable unit on a budget. It’s a headset that’s widely accepted by the marketplace, which means you buy knowing that it’s worth the money. Read onwards to determine if it’s an option you’ll be happy with.

You’ll achieve a noise reduction of 24 decibels, which is more than enough to drown out the loud noises that can interrupt communication. However, there is no active noise cancelation that can help remove very loud noises.

The large 50mm audio drivers provide good audio quality that is loud. Therefore, you can turn the volume up when you’re having trouble hearing what your colleagues are saying. Also, the drivers are suitable for enjoying music but don’t expect audiophile grade quality.

The earcups have a large oval shape that will fit your entire ear. There is foam padding, but it’s not soft compared with some of the more ergonomic offerings in this buyer’s guide. The headband padding is also on the hard side, which means it may not be comfortable if you’re used to very soft padding.

The stainless steel frame means the aviation headset is sturdy and can take a beating, which is ideal in a professional setting. Furthermore, the cable is not prone to damage so you can tug on it with some force without damage.

The Rugged Air RA200 is a solid budget choice, but look at the drawbacks for a balanced overview. Firstly, the headset comfort could be improved by increasing the softness of the padding. For long haul flights you need to be comfortable to enjoy the piloting experience and make good decisions. Also, the earpads can get hot after a while so you may need to take a break to avoid sweat build up.

To summarize, the Rugged Air RA200 aviation headset is a smart buy for the price conscious buyer that want durability, large audio drivers, and 24 decibels worth of noise reduction. You’ll love using this headset for short and long haul flights but you may need to take breaks.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 1.2 Pounds
Bluetooth: No
The Pros
Large 50mm audio drivers
24 decibels noise reduction
Sturdy build quality
The Cons
No active noise cancelation

2. KORE AVIATION P1 Series

KORE AVIATION P1 SeriesView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.7/5

The KORE AVIATION P1 Series comes from an established brand, which means you can buy with peace of mind. It’s a budget offering that’s suitable for all pilots regardless of what type of plane they are flying. Take a closer look at the features to figure out if there is enough here for the price.

The 24 decibel noise reduction rating means that loud noises are significantly reduced, and low to medium noises are removed. Therefore, you can clearly communicate with others using the headset and microphone. The mic has a minimalist design so durability might be an issue if it takes a few knocks.

The foam ear cups are not the softest but there is enough padding to provide a buffer for your ears. Also, there is a lot of soft padding at the headband underside allowing for a comfortable wearing experience.

The headset comes with a 1 year warranty so you can buy confidently knowing that faults will be fixed. The headset frame has good reliability so you don’t have to worry about the headset breaking down when you need it most.

The KORE AVIATION P1 Series is a good choice but you’ll need to consider the disadvantages to make a smart buying choice. Firstly, microphone durability could be improved so that you don’t have to worry about physical knocks. Also, the warranty could be 2 years so that you can enjoy stability for longer.

To summarize, the KORE AVIATION P1 Series is a no-brainer if you need a budget option that provides good functionality. The good comfort ergonomics and clear audio quality means it’s a headset that will not let you down while flying. You’ll be hard pressed to find better alternatives at a similar price.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 1.7 Pounds
Bluetooth: No
The Pros
Good value for money
24 decibel reduction rating
Gold plated plugs
The Cons
No active noise cancelation

Best Aviation Headsets Under $500

The aviation headset in this price bracket provides some of the best value for money that you’ll find. They have the right mix of performance and asking price so you can buy confidently for a good deal. The offerings here provide near premium level quality without charging the price. They are suitable for professional pilots and those that are training for a licence.

In this price bracket note the brand and build quality. Some headsets have a better construction than others. If you’re after durability then you’ll be pleased with the UFQ A28 and Cadence CA501.

3. Best Value: UFQ A28

UFQ A28View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.9/5

The UFQ A28 is a highly rated aviation headset that has all the features a modern pilot needs. The blend of the extra-strong noise reduction, amazing comfort, and good mic means there is a lot to like here. Delve deeper into the features to educate yourself on why the UFQ A28 should be your next purchase.

The headset has a maximum noise reduction rating of 52 decibels, which is among the strongest in this buyer’s guide. Therefore, you can communicate effectively in noisy cockpits without dealing with disturbing ambient noise.

The high quality Hi-Fi speakers allow you to enjoy good music quality when there is no need to communicate. Therefore, you can use the headset for more than one use, which adds to the versatility of the experience.

The premium noise canceling mic is great at removing the background noise that can cause distractions while talking. Also, you can use the volume controls to alter the volume for an optimal listening experience.

The AA batteries last for 48 hours, which is a lengthy period of time but you will need to stock up on the batteries to avoid running out when you need power the most. Also, a convenient carrying bag is included that can be used to transport the headset without damage or dirt build up between flights.

The UFQ A28 has good soft padding that allows you to be comfortable during the entire duration of a long haul flight. Adequate soft padding ensures you do not feel harsh pressure points that may cause you to take frequent breaks.

The UFQ A28 has plenty of positives but don’t discount the negatives for a balanced overview. Firstly, the high quality speakers may be overkill for pilots that will not listen to music. Also, it’s a bulky unit that may not be suitable for pilots with smaller head sizes.

To conclude, the UFQ A28 is a smart choice if you are looking for premium level quality from a trustworthy brand. The mixture of the strong mic noise cancelation, good comfort ergonomics, extra-strong noise reduction, and sturdy build means you’re getting value for the asking price. It’s an aviation headset you can take with you around the world without fear of it letting you down.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 2.17 Pounds
Bluetooth: No
The Pros
Good comfort ergonomics
Very strong noise reduction
High quality Hi-Fi speakers
The Cons
Bulky

4. Rugged Air RA950

Rugged Air RA950View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

The Rugged Air RA950 is one of their best offerings but it comes at a significantly higher price than their alternatives. It’s packed with the right features for a comfortable flying experience. You’ll also love the extra-strong noise reduction that can turn loud cockpits into quiet sanctuaries. Continue reading to learn more about what the Rugged Air RA950 offers for the asking price.

The headset comes with active noise cancelation that’s capable of 39 decibels worth of noise reduction at 3,000Hz. Therefore, you’ll love communicating with the headset in loud environments since you’ll clearly hear the person at the other end of the line.

The fully adjustable steel spring headband is designed so that you can obtain a secure fit. It’s also sturdy so it can take a few knocks before wearing out. The earcups have extensive padding on the outside and there is plenty of space for your entire ear to fit inside. Therefore, you won’t feel pressure on your ears. The headset is one of the bulkier in this buyer’s guide so you’ll need to get used to the wearing style.

The ergonomically designed mic has a foam buffer against wind noise and the boom is highly flexible so you can position it exactly where you want it. The mic also has volume controls so you can set the volume that best matches your needs.

The Rugged Air RA950 is a competitive choice but consider the disadvantages before buying. Firstly, there is no 3.5mm input jack so connectivity might be problematic with your equipment. Also, the headset is pricey and not the best value for money compared to the cheaper options in this price bracket.

To conclude, the Rugged Air RA950 is a competitive choice that provides strong noise reduction and a long-lasting fit. You’ll love wearing it for all your flights since communication quality is clear. However, it’s pricey so you need to make sure that you’ll take advantage of the extra features offered.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 1.85 Pounds
Bluetooth: No
The Pros
Ergonomically designed mic
Long-lasting comfort
Premium use of materials
The Cons
Bulky

5. Cadence CA501

Cadence CA501View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.7/5

The Cadence CA501 headset is a good choice for pilots that are looking for affordability, practicality, and durability. You’ll love the combination of features that provides amazing value for money. Continue reading to learn more about what the Cadence CA501 aviation headset brings to the table.

The headset has a bulky design but that’s to provide good comfort. There is plenty of space within the confines of the ear cups for your ears and you’ll love the extra-padding at the underside of the headband. You can use the headset comfortably during the entire duration of a long haul flight.

The proprietary AirPunch+ drivers deliver amazing audio quality that’s crisp and clear so you can communicate effectively. You won’t have to ask the person at the other end of the line to repeat what they are saying often. Furthermore, the music fidelity is great too so you’ll love enjoying music when resting. The combined functionality means you’re getting extra value for the asking price.

The headset uses a 6 inch auxiliary cable with a 3.5mm connection. Therefore, you can also combine with laptops, smartphones, and tablets. However, there is no Bluetooth connectivity so you are limited by range.

The included premium carrying case is the ideal place to store the headset when not in use. It ensures the headsets is kept clean and also there is a lower chance of damage. The case also comes with a handle so you can conveniently carry it when walking through the airport.

The Cadence CA501 is a superb choice, but there are negatives you need to be aware of. Firstly, there is no active noise cancelation, only passive. Therefore, it may not be strong enough to drown out the loudest of noises. Furthermore, the headset has a clamping force that might be uncomfortable for some – it depends on your head size.

To summarize, the Cadence CA501 aviation headset is a good choice for buyer’s that want good value for money. You’ll love the combination of the good comfort ergonomics, excellent audio quality, and handy carrying case. It’s a highly rated product so you can buy confidently knowing that other pilots approve.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 1.9 Pounds
Bluetooth: No
The Pros
Good comfort ergonomics
Excellent value for money
Competitive audio drivers
The Cons
No active noise cancelation

6. Rugged Air RA900

Rugged Air RA900View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.6/5

The Rugged Air RA900 is a good choice for buyer’s that want value for money. You’ll love the combination of the 24 decibel noise reduction, large 50mm audio drivers, and durability. It’s the design for professionals that need a headset to be a reliable workhorse. Continue reading to learn more about what the Rugged Air RA900 has on offer.

The excellent mic design has a foam coating that reduces wind noise, which is ideal when communicating with colleagues. Also, the mic is ergonomically placed close to your mouth so there is no need to speak loudly to be heard.

The headset has a bulky but comfortable design, which means you can you use it for long flights. There is extensive soft padding at the headband and ear cups so you won’t feel the pressure points squashing down on your skin.

You’ll love the crystal clear audio quality of the large 50mm speakers and the 24 decibel noise reduction rating gets rid of most ambient sounds. Communicating in the cockpit is important to get things done fast. Therefore, put your trust in the Rugged Air RA900 and you won’t be disappointed with the results.

The Rugged Air RA900 is the right choice for buyers that need a durable and clear headset. You’ll love the mixture of the noise canceling microphone, large audio drivers, and good noise reduction. Rugged is a reputable brand that consistently releases highly rated headset so you can buy confidently.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 1.2 Pounds
Bluetooth: No
The Pros
Large 50mm audio drivers
Wind canceling mic
Comfortable design
The Cons
Bulky

7. FARO G2-PNR

FARO G2-PNRView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

The headset is engineered in the USA so you can count on the workmanship. It’s the ideal purchase if you need good noise reduction, a clear mic, and wide compatibility. The FARO G2-PNR is fairly priced and professional pilots around the world are already using it with high praise. Read onwards to learn more about what the FARO G2-PNR offers for the asking price.

The 26 decibel noise reduction is more than enough to drown out low to medium noises, but you will struggle to completely remove loud sounds. Understanding each other clearly is important for fast communication in the cockpit.

The headset uses good quality materials and has a sturdy build that will stand the test of time, which is ideal when traveling around the world. Also, you can take advantage of the 3 year replacement warranty that will help you get a new unit shortly after damage.

The luxurious comfort ensures that you’re able to use the headset for extended periods. The earcups have a lot of soft padding, but they are very bulk due to the passive noise cancelation design. Also, the headband has a lot of soft padding that helps avoid nasty pressure points.

The FARO G2-PNR is a competitive choice but you need to consider the drawbacks to ensure that you get a good deal. Firstly, the bulky design means that you may feel like you can work comfortably without taking breaks. Also, the lack of Bluetooth connectivity means that you cannot connect with your smartphone or other device.

To conclude, the FARO G2-PNR is a good option if you don’t mind a bulky design and want enough comfort to take you around the world. You’ll love the 26 decibel noise reduction, good use of materials, and affordable price.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 1.25 Pounds
Bluetooth: No
The Pros
Engineered in USA
Good value for money
26 decibel noise reduction
Ergonomic microphone
The Cons
Bulky

Best Aviation Headsets Under $1,200

You’ll find the top aviation headsets in this price bracket that come with the features that allow for straightforward communication. You’ll love the premium comfort and strong noise reduction that allows you to speak without dealing with background noise. You’ll also find a few entries here from Bose, which is an industry leader.

The high asking price of the headsets in this price bracket means you’ll need to give them an extra dose of scrutiny. Evaluate the features added and compare them with the asking price. Also, make sure you need the included features for your preferred way of communicating.

8. Top Pick: Bose A20

Bose A20View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.9/5

Bose is an industry leading brand that consistently manufactures headsets that are worth your attention. The Bose A20 comes packed with some of the best aviation headset technology that’s out there but at a premium price. Therefore, you need to take a look at the features offered to determine if there is enough quality for the high asking price.

The headset comes with 30% better noise reduction than conventional aviation headsets, which means you’ll be able to communicate more clearly. Bose is an industry leader when it comes to noise cancelation so you can trust them to execute it well here.

The headset also provides 30% less clamping force than alternatives so you will feel comfortable while wearing the headset. There is extensive soft padding on the headset underside and earcups, which means you’ll love the snug fit. It’s designed to provide a pleasurable wearing experience for the long term.

The headset provides Bluetooth connectivity to improve compatibility with other devices. You can also customize your experience using the in-line control box. It allows you to manage Bluetooth connections, turn off the mic, and much more.

The Bose active EQ means you can personalize the audio profile to match your needs. You can turn up the vocals when communicating on the job or turn up the bass when you are listening to music. The Bose active EQ is simple to use and even beginners among you can get started from day 1 with a small learning curve.

The Bose A20 is a great piece of kit but you need to consider the drawbacks for a balanced overview. Firstly, the headset is one of the more expensive options in this buyer’s guide, which means you won’t find value for money. You can get away with using some of the cheaper alternatives and get by without problems. However, you’ll miss out on the attention to detail and advanced considerations this headset has been given. Furthermore, the headset lasts for 40 hours per charge but you need AA batteries, which adds extra to the cost.

To conclude, the Bose A20 is a competitive headset that is a dream come true for pilots. The combination of strong noise reduction and excellent comfort ergonomics means there is a lot to like here. However, they are expensive so you need to be sure that they are a good match for you.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 0.75 Pounds
Bluetooth: Yes
The Pros
Excellent comfort
Industry leading brand
Competitive noise cancelation
The Cons
Expensive
No rechargeable battery

9. Lightspeed Zulu 3

Lightspeed Zulu 3View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

The Lightspeed Zulu 3 is a dream come true for pilots that are after good ergonomics and excellent audio quality. They are expensive but you’re getting one of the better performing pilot headsets on the market. Continue reading to learn more about what the Lightspeed Zulu 3 brings to the table.

The contoured ear seals have a design that hugs your jawline, which means the fit is comfortable. Furthermore, there is a lot of soft padding that feels nice on the skin. Therefore, you can enjoy a long lasting fit, which is ideal for pilots that need a long haul flight solution. The headband also has decent padding on the underside, which means there are no pressure points.

The durable Kevlar components means that the structure is solid and can take a beating before wearing out. The cables are forgiving, which means that you can pull on them with some force without causing damage.

Bluetooth is available to provide connectivity with compatible modern devices. Therefore, you can connect with devices such as smartphones, laptops, and tablets. Also, you can use the 3.5mm cable for a more reliable connection.

The headset is backed by the Lightspeed 7 year warranty, which is one of the best and longest in the industry. This shows that the brand has a lot of confidence in their headset so you can buy without hesitation. The long warranty deal means you can fly a lot of miles before the warranty is voided – you may never need to buy another aviation headset for the rest of your career.

The Lightspeed Zulu 3 is a good choice but you need to consider the negatives for a balanced overview. Firstly, there is no active noise cancelation, which means noise reduction is not as good as with the Bose A20. Also, the headset is pricey and you may find comparable quality at a lower price. Therefore, if you are strapped for cash then you could look for an aviation headset in a cheaper price bracket.

Overall, the Lightspeed Zulu 3 is the right choice for buyers that have a big budget and want strong durability. Also, you can buy with confidence because there is a good 7 year warranty deal. The headset is a reliable workhorse that you can use to all year without it breaking down when it’s most needed.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 3.5 Pounds
Bluetooth: Yes
The Pros
Good comfort ergonomics
Excellent durability
7 year warranty deal
The Cons
Expensive

10. Bose ProFlight

Bose ProFlightView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.6/5

The Bose ProFlight headset is one of the lightest and most portable options for the professional that enjoys a minimalist fit. The list of impressive features means there is a lot to like here. However, the asking price is steep so you’ll need to examine the features and figure out if they are worth the asking price.

The headset goes for an in-ear fit rather than using earcups, which means there is significantly less bulk. There is a minimal amount of padding because the low weight means there is no need to protect from nasty pressure points.

The headset is designed for noisy aircraft with pressurized cabins since there is good noise cancelation. The in-ear fit allows you to create an airtight seal within your ears and block out ambient noise.

Also, the noise canceling microphone increases clarity and reduces background noise so that you can communicate clearly. The setup is designed for aircraft that utilize PTT systems and “hot mic”. Improved communication is important to quickly execute tasks and ensure the flight is safe.

The headset allows for wireless Bluetooth communication so you have compatibility with modern devices. For example, you can take calls via your smartphone without taking the headset off.

The headset comes with a bunch of accessories, which includes different eartip sizes, a carrying case, batteries, and a control module holder. Therefore, you can get going from day 1 without having to worry about buying accessories to get the experience you want.

The ergonomic mic design means it’s positioned close to your mouth without getting in the way. Also, you can remove the mic if you feel that it is getting in the way of your work and you don’t need to communicate at that instant.

The Bose ProFlight is a competitive piece of kit, but you need to consider the drawbacks for a balanced overview. Firstly, the headset is not among the sturdiest because of the design. The bulkier alternatives in this guide can take more of a physical beating before wearing out. Also, they are more expensive than they should be since it is an in-ear design.

Overall, the Bose ProFlight is the right choice for the professional that wants an in-ear design from an industry leader. You’ll love the combination of the low weight, strong noise cancelation, and included accessories. However, make sure you’ll take advantage of the features because they are expensive.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 0.31 Pounds
Bluetooth: Yes
The Pros
Industry leading brand
Low weight and comfortable
Strong noise cancelation
Good mic implementation
The Cons
Expensive

11. David Clark DC PRO-X2

David Clark DC PRO-X2View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

The David Clark DC PRO-X2 is a high end piece of kit that delivers the performance a busy pilot needs. You’ll love the combination of the great comfort ergonomics, competitive mic quality, and premium materials. Read onward to learn more about what the David Clark DC PRO-X2 brings to the table.

At first glance you may notice the on-ear earcups that contribute to less bulk. Typically, aviation headsets have large over-ear earcups to provide excellent noise reduction, but the David Clark DC PRO-X2 is different. You will appreciate the small earcups if you hate that bulky feel that causes you discomfort.

You’ll need to deal with the reduced noise reduction of this headset so it’s mostly for quiet cockpits. On-ear earcups do not provide much noise cancelation, which means in noisy environments you may struggle to hear your colleagues.

The 5 year warranty means you’ll love using this headset without worrying about damage. The long warranty time gives you the peace of mind that your big investment is not going to go down the drain.

You can take advantage of the Bluetooth technology to connect with modern devices. Bluetooth can be used with laptops, smartphones, and tablets. This inclusion of Bluetooth is the attention to detail you need from a top manufacturer.

Don’t add the David Clark DC PRO-X2 to your virtual shopping basket before considering a few of the drawbacks. Firstly, the lack of noise reduction means that you’re stuck if you are in a loud cockpit. Also, the expensive price might be a big obstacle if you have a limited budget and are looking for value.

To conclude, the David Clark DC PRO-X2m is the ideal choice for quiet cockpits. The headset is one of the least bulky on the market and provides the audio and mic quality that will please the professionals among you. David Clark is a brand that you can trust so don’t give a second thought to buying if you have the budget.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 1.9 Pounds
Bluetooth: Yes
The Pros
Not bulky
Reputable brand
Premium use of materials
The Cons
Poor noise reduction

12. Fargo G3

Fargo G3View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

The Fargo G3 is a high-end headset that offers excellent functionality for the professional pilot. It’s ideal for any pilot and cabin due to the very strong noise reduction. It’s on the pricey side so you’ll need to give it an extra dose of scrutiny before choosing to buy. Continue reading to learn more about what the Fargo G3 has on offer.

Comfort is excellent since there is extra padding at the earcups and headband. Therefore, you can fly for hours before you’ll feel like taking the headset off for a break. It’s also made from lightweight materials so it’s not as heavy as it looks.

The premium speakers contribute towards amazing audio fidelity that will impress even the professional pilots among you. Also, the mic comes with effective noise reduction that eliminates cabin noise allowing the other person to hear you clearly.

Maximum noise reduction is 52 decibels, which means you can speak clearly in loud cabins. Quick and sharp communication is key for an effective flying experience. However, the active noise reduction consumes battery life so you’ll need to use the feature sparingly.

An in-line control box is included that allows you to make changes on the go. You can accept calls via the Bluetooth connection, toggle the power, and mute the mic. Also, the large size of the control box means it’s easy to grab hold of without having to fiddle around.

The Fargo G3 is a great choice but you must take a look at the drawbacks to make a smart buying decision. The headset is pricey so you need to make sure that the features are something you’ll need on your flight. Also, the padding is not as soft as some of the competitors in this buyer’s guide.

To summarize, the Fargo G3 is a great choice for buyer’s that want premium performance with strong noise reduction. The combination of the comfortable fit, premium materials, excellent microphone, and trusted brand name means you can buy without hesitation.

View on Amazon

Tech Specs
Weight: 0.56 Pounds
Bluetooth: Yes
The Pros
Handy control box included
Comfortable fit
Extra-strong noise reduction
The Cons
Pricey
0/50 ratings