Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds - Excellent Wired Noise Cancelling Earbuds for the Price

Published on Dec. 18, 2023, 4:23 p.m.

Looking for a pair of affordable noise cancelling earbuds? The Koss QZ Buds deliver effective active noise cancellation and great sound quality in a wired form factor. In this review, we’ll take a look at the key features and performance of these earbuds to see if they deliver on value.

Overview

Koss is an American audio brand founded in 1958 and well-known for making affordable, high-quality headphones and earbuds. The Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds are their first pair of wired earbuds with active noise cancellation. Featuring a sleek all-black design, these earbuds aim to provide great noise isolation without the need for batteries or charging.

 Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds

Key Features:

  • Wired active noise cancelling earbuds
  • Effective noise isolation
  • Clear and balanced sound
  • Lightweight and comfortable fit
  • Convenient in-line controls
  • Monitor mode for situational awareness

Design - Sleek and Understated

The Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds have an understated matte black finish with metal accents on the earbuds and inline microphone. The subtle design gives them a premium look and feel that punches above their affordable price point. The earbuds are relatively small and lightweight, making them comfortable for extended wearing.

Features - Effective ANC and Convenient Controls

The key feature of the Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds is active noise cancellation powered by a single AAA battery. The noise cancelling effect is decent, effective at reducing ambient noise from airplane engines, traffic, crowds and other moderate noise sources. There’s also a monitor mode that lets in outside sound when you need situational awareness.

For music and call control, the inline microphone and buttons allow you to play/pause, skip tracks, adjust volume and take calls. No need to touch your phone while on the go.

 Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds

Crazy-Easy to Use

These earbuds couldn’t be simpler to operate. Just plug them into any 3.5mm audio source and start listening. Use the one-button controls to play/pause music, handle calls and activate monitor mode when needed. No complex controls or companion app required.

Sound Quality - Clear and Balanced

With a frequency response of 10 - 20,000 Hz, the Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds deliver very good sound for earbuds at this price. The audio reproduction is clean and balanced, with clear mids and highs. Bass is punchy but not overpowering. Combined with the noise isolation from the in-ear fit, you get immersive sound.

Crystal-Clear Microphone

The built-in microphone captures your voice with crisp clarity on phone calls. No one will know you’re using discreet in-ear earbuds thanks to the advanced mic tech.

Peaceful Noise Isolation

The ergonomic earbud design provides a tight seal that passively blocks external noise. Add active noise cancellation, and you’ll enjoy serene silence in noisy environments. The monitor mode lets in ambient sound when you need it.

Lasting Battery Life

While most ANC earbuds need daily charging, the Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds just need an occasional AAA battery swap for unlimited noise cancelling power. You’ll never miss a moment of music.
 Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds

User-Friendly Controls

The one-button inline remote makes it effortless to control music, take calls, and activate ambient monitoring mode. No need to touch your phone while on the move.

Comfort and Fit - Designed for All-Day Wearing

The Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds come with 3 sizes of silicone eartips and 2 sizes of foam tips to accommodate different ear shapes for a secure and comfortable fit. The lightweight earbuds stay securely in place during activity. Users note the earbuds are comfortable enough for prolonged wearing.

 Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds

Brand:

Koss, founded in 1958 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA. Known for making quality, affordable audio products.

Use Cases:

Great for travel, commuting, work and study environments where you want to isolate distracting ambient noise. The monitor mode allows you to temporarily let in sounds when needed.

User Feedback Analysis:

Reviews from audiophile shoppers provide insightful feedback on living with the Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds everyday. Here’s an in-depth look at what users highlight in their real-world experiences.

For many reviewers, the stand-out feature is the active noise cancellation powered by the wired AAA battery pack. They describe the ANC as extremely effective at blocking out ambient noise, from chatter in cafes to rumbling bus engines. The noise isolation provides a blissful oasis of calm during commutes and travel. However, some users feel the ANC could still be a notch stronger to compete with premium models.

Comfort and fit draw universal praise, with most users able to wear the Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds for hours without fatigue. Reviewers compliment the lightweight construction and selection of eartips for achieving a tailored, stay-put fit. Even side sleepers can comfortably use them in bed. However, some with smaller ears find getting a tight seal difficult.

In terms of audio quality, users describe the sound signature as well-balanced with sparkling treble and deep, controlled bass that avoids muddiness. The sound is engaging enough for immersive music listening. However, audiophiles note the buds still lack the spacious soundstage of over-ear headphones.

For call quality, the built-in microphone receives kudos for picking up voice clearly and filtering out background noise. Callers can’t even tell users are on earbuds. Though some users face occasional dropouts when moving far from the phone.

When it comes to build quality, user opinions diverge. Some praise the sturdy metal housings while others report issues like earbuds failing after a few months. There are mixed experiences with cable durability as well.

Overall, buyers praise the Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds as a budget-friendly way to enjoy effective noise cancellation paired with better-than-expected sound. With some caveats around longevity, the feature set remains impressive for the affordable price tag.

Pros:

  • Effective active noise cancellation
  • Lightweight and comfortable fit
  • Balanced, immersive sound
  • Convenient onboard controls
  • Monitor mode for situational awareness
  • No battery charging required

Cons:

  • Noise cancellation could be stronger
  • Cable may lack long-term durability
  • No app for adjustments

Value - Impressive Features for the Price

For under $50, the Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds deliver very good value with their combination of effective active noise cancellation, balanced sound, convenient controls and comfortable fit. The wired design avoids battery charging issues. While the ANC may not match more expensive models, it outperforms other earbuds at this price point.

Conclusion

With the Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds, Koss has added noise cancelling capabilities to their wired earbuds line at an affordable price. The effective ANC, great audio quality and lightweight comfort make these earbuds a great choice for budget-conscious buyers looking to reduce ambient noise in travel and work environments. For those who prefer the simplicity of wired earbuds, the Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds deserve a top spot on their shortlist.

 Koss QZ Buds in-Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earbuds

Specifications:

  • Connectivity: Wired 3.5mm
  • Driver: Unknown
  • Frequency response: 10 - 20,000 Hz
  • Impedance: 32 ohms
  • Noise cancellation: Active with monitor mode
  • Microphone: In-line omnidirectional
  • Controls: Inline 3-button remote
  • Eartips: 3 silicone sizes (S/M/L), 2 foam sizes (M/L)
  • Battery: 1 AAA battery required
  • Weight: 3.84 oz

What’s in the box:

  • Koss QZ Buds earbuds
  • 3 pairs silicone eartips (S/M/L)
  • 2 pairs foam eartips (M/L)
  • Airline adapter
  • Carrying case
  • Quick start guide

How to Use:

  1. Select eartips that fit your ears securely and comfortably. Twist to lock them onto the earbuds.
  2. Insert earbuds and adjust until they seal your ear canal. This improves noise isolation and bass response.
  3. Install 1 AAA battery into the inline control box to power active noise cancellation.
  4. Connect the 3.5mm plug to your audio source. Use the inline buttons to control volume, tracks and phone calls.
  5. Press the monitor button as needed to temporarily allow in sounds from your environment.
  6. Take off the earbuds and place in carrying case after use.