Did you know that there are actually headphones specifically designed to tune in to radio channels? They work as a standalone player without needing to be connected to your smartphones or MP3s or radios.
You’re probably wondering, why would you need it when you can just use smartphones and Bluetooth headphones? What about avoiding draining your phone’s battery and cellular data? These headphones also have relatively long battery lives, making them great for the workplace, travel, day trips, and everyday use.
If you’re considering getting yourself one, check out our list of the 10 best AM/FM headphones below.
The Best AM/FM Radio Headphone Reviews 2022
1. 3M WorkTunes AM/FM Hearing Protector
3M is a well-known American manufacturer of products for various industries like healthcare, worker safety, and consumer goods. The 3M WorkTunes headphone comes in a simple, yet easy-to-spot black and yellow look.
Comfort was obviously considered in the design process as this headphone has plush ear cushions and a padded, adjustable headband. It’s also lightweight and antenna-free, which are great features that allow you to move around freely. Another super plus factor in the comfort department is these headphones are hat-compatible with low-pressure headbands, making it fit for extended wear.
In terms of sound quality, the WorkTunes headphones are equipped with 40-mm high-fidelity speakers, which provide premium sound quality. You get exceptionally clear quality sound with these headphones and a bass boost option for a more optimized listening experience. It also has a 24dB noise reduction rating ensuring your ears are adequately protected.
No official mention is found on the product description regarding battery life. However, we found that it took us a month to change the batteries on these headsets, which is pretty impressive.
In terms of functionality, the 3M WorkTunes headphones have so many impressive features worth mentioning. First is the audio assist feature, which gives you operational and set-up guidance. This leaves your hands free to do more important tasks and allows you to operate the headset without having to take it off. Second is its easy-to-use and navigate controls, which can be operated even with work gloves on. Third, we have the auto-scan feature, which helps you scan and save up to 50 of your favorite radio stations – AM or FM. Finally, you can connect it to your smartphone via an audio jack if you wanted to listen to other forms of audio.
One thing we think that the 3M WorkTunes can improve for the next models is enhancing the volume. Hands down, the sound quality is good. But, despite the volume being on maximum, there are times when we feel like the volume should be louder.
Overall, if you’re after an AM/FM headphone that’s comfortable, high-quality, and feature-packed, the 3M WorkTunes might be a top option.
- Great comfort features – padded cushion, lightweight, hat-compatible, low-pressure headband. Suitable for extended wear.
- Great battery life – it takes a month before batteries need replacing.
- Premium sound quality with bass boost option for enhanced listening.
- Impressive features – audio assist for hands-free operation, easy navigability, auto-scan features, smartphone compatibility.
- The volume could do with enhancing as sometimes maximum volume may not be loud enough.
2. Howard Leight by Honeywell Sync Hi-Visibility Digital AM/FM Radio
Honeywell is an American company that manufactures a wide range of products, from aerospace to automotive to chemicals, plastics, and more. The Howard Leight is Honeywell’s range of hearing protection solutions, made specifically for the workplace.
The standout feature of the Howard Leight earmuffs is their overall design, with the workplace obviously kept in mind. First, it comes with reinforced fork slides for added strength and a padded headband for comfortable extended wear. Next are its reflective headband and neon green earcups, which are compliant with most workplace standards ensuring worker’s safety. These features ensure added visibility for workers, especially at night, in low light, or in poor weather conditions.
Another unique feature of this AM/FM headphone brand is its patented air-flow control technology. This results in sound reduction across all frequencies without having to increase earcup size or weight. This means the headphone is lightweight and comfortable to wear.
Sound-wise, this earmuff produces high-fidelity audio and protects your ears, thanks to the excellent noise reduction rating of 25. This is the rating recommended for construction, aviating, military, farming, steel, transportation, law enforcement, contracting, and more.
These earmuffs are powered by 2 AA batteries, and the average battery life is about 140 hours. The battery is conveniently located behind each earpiece, and the door easily snaps in and out for quick and easy battery replacements.
One obvious setback to the Howard Leight earmuffs is its relatively high price point. They come out as the most expensive headphone on this list. But if you don’t mind compromising a few dollars for the above features, then this shouldn’t be a biggie for you.
Another issue we found is that the digital display does tend to fog on extremely hot days. However, this does not appear to affect the functionality and resolves fairly quickly, so we feel this is negligible.
Overall, if you’re after a workplace complaint AM/FM headphones and don’t mind paying a few extra dollars, check out the Howard Leight range.
- Workplace compliant, high-visibility design.
- Comfortable features – padded headband, lightweight earcup.
- High-fidelity audio.
- Noise-reduction rating of 25 – ideal for a wide range of industries.
- Relatively long battery life of 140 hours on 2 AA batteries.
- Price leaning towards the expensive side.
- Digital display fogs on extremely hot days.
3. Mpow Bluetooth Shooting Ear Protection With FM Radio
Mpow is an Amazon retailer of a wide array of accessories and consumer electronics. Some of their current product range includes headphones, receivers and transmitters, device mounts, selfie sticks, and speakers.
An attractive feature of the Mpow AM/FM headphone is its multi-connectivity. Apart from being a standalone AM/FM radio tuner, it can also connect to your devices using Bluetooth connectivity or via an audio cable. This is an impressive feature, considering the price point – the Mpow is actually the cheapest product on this list.
Comfort-wise, the headphones are designed with cushioned ear pads and wide and deep ear cushions. This ensures a firm seal and minimizes the pressure over the ears, which means you can wear the headphones all day long. The headband is also cushioned and adjustable. It also has rotatable ear cups to ensure it suits any head shape.
The Mpow headphone requires three AAA batteries to operate, and replacing batteries is very straightforward. The battery compartment is located along the left ear cup, with the battery cover easily ejected with the press of a button. The earcups have a low-battery warning, allowing you time to replace your battery and enjoy an uninterrupted audio listening experience.
Finally, the Mpow has noise reduction technology up to 29dB. It complies with ANSI S3.19 and CE EN52-1 Standards, which means the headphones are suitable for use as ear protection with outdoor work. Therefore, it’s an ideal headphone when mowing, shooting, racing, in construction sites, woodworking, or other loud environments.
One criticism we have with the Mpow is although the headband is adjustable, it only stretches up to a certain length. For those with extremely large heads, the fit can be extremely tight even on the widest/loosest headband setting. So, while it may not be for those with larger heads, it’s probably still a great deal for most.
To sum it up, if you’re after an affordable AM/FM headphone with the basic features, the Mpow may be the one for you.
- Affordable – cheapest headphones on this list.
- Multi-connectivity – Bluetooth and audio-cable enabled.
- Comfortable wear – cushioned ear pads, wide and deep ear cushions, adjustable headband, rotatable ear cups.
- Easy battery replacement with a low-battery warning.
- 29 dB noise-reduction technology – suitable for use in outdoor work.
- Although adjustable, the headband may not be ideal for those with larger heads.
4. ZOHAN EM042 AM/FM Radio Headphone with Digital Display
Zohan is another Amazon ear protection retailer for a wide range of consumers, from kids to workers, to gun enthusiasts. The EM042 is Zohan’s AM/FM headphone specifically tailored for use around noisy environments.
The comfort feature of the EM042 is worth commending. Although the headphones are made of metal frames from strength, the headbands have adequate padding for comfort. Besides being a snug fit, the foam earpads also have a snap-in design, which means you can easily replace them in the future. When your earpads eventually crack or wear with time, you’d only need a fresh set of earpads rather than a new headphone. Finally, the earpads also have an anti-sweat design, which ensures hygienic use at all times.
Another appealing feature of the Zohan EM042 is its digital LCD display, which definitely adds to its user-friendliness.
These headphones are powered by two standard AA alkaline batteries. We love that the battery compartment is located on the headphone side, allowing for easy installation of the batteries.
The sound quality is also pretty decent on this set of headphones. The EM042 has a noise reduction rating of 24 dB, making it perfect for use during lawnmowing, tractor driving, woodworking, etc.
A few setbacks of the Zohan EM042 boils down to its ability to scan through radio stations. Unfortunately, it only scans stations up to around 15 miles from your area. If you don’t mind listening to your local stations, this shouldn’t be a major dealbreaker. Another scan-related issue is that the station scanner could do with a bit of improvement on sensitivity. It sometimes skips channels when auto scanning but can detect the station fine if you manually tune into it.
All in all, if you don’t mind listening to mostly local channels and are after comfortable wear with a user-friendly design, the Zohan EM042 maybe your Am/FM headphone of choice.
- Great comfort features – padded adjustable headband, snug-fit foam earpads with snap-fit design.
- Hygienic earpads – anti-sweat design.
- User-friendly – digital LCD display.
- Decent sound quality – 24 dB noise reduction rating.
- The short-range of station reach – only able to scan up to 15 miles.
- Autoscan feature could do with sensitivity improvement.
5. Stanley Sync Digital AM/FM/MP3 Radio Earmuff
The Stanley brand has been around for over 100 years. They are well-known for their range of hand, automotive, home improvement tools. Also, you might be interested to know that Stanley was the first to produce tape measures.
Design-wise, the Stanley Sync Digital headphone comes in a black and bright yellow shade, which is great for added visibility. It also has an adequately-sized digital LCD, contributing to its user-friendliness.
In terms of audio quality, Sync Digital is equipped with hi-fidelity digital stereo reception and excellent volume management technology. This allows you to create a tailored listening experience, whether you’re outdoors or simply chilling indoors.
We also love the multi-connectivity of this headphone. Other than being a standalone radio tuner, the headphones also come with AUX input jacks and cables. This allows you to connect your headphones to other devices so you can listen to other forms of audio.
Comfort-wise, these headphones have a padded headband to support extended wear. The earcups are designed to be slim and lightweight for your comfort, and they also have air-flow technology. This patented technology reduces sound across all frequencies without adding weight or increasing the size of your earcups. The ear cushions also snap on and off easily, making it easy for you to clean or replace them.
The only issue is, although we appreciate Sync Digital’s multi-connectivity, this would have been better if it was Bluetooth capable. For a headphone primarily designed for the outdoors, it’s a bit awkward to have the audio cable dragging on, especially while at work.
Overall, however, if you’re after a highly visible headphone with comfort and user-friendly features, and good sound quality, the Stanley Sync Digital may be an option.
- User-friendly, high-visibility design – bright yellow and black, digital LCD display.
- Great sound quality – high-fidelity audio.
- Multi-connectivity – AUX connectivity to your device.
- Great comfort features – lightweight, padded headband and earcups, patented air-flow technology.
- Multi-connectivity would have been better if it was Bluetooth capable.
6. Honeywell Sync Digital AM/FM/MP3 Radio Earmuff
Honeywell Retail is an Amazon retailer of safety products, such as earmuffs, face masks, face shields, to name a few. Please note, Honeywell Retail shouldn’t be confused with the other Honeywell brand we previously mentioned on this list.
The Honeywell Sync Digital Earmuff pretty much has the same features as most previous headphones on this list.
Looking at the design, the headphones come in a black and red finish with a digital LCD screen. It has easy to operate and navigate buttons, with 10 pre-set stations, so operating the headphones should be straightforward.
It has standard comfort features, such as the padded headband, cushioned earpads with a snap-in fit. It also has air-flow technology that adds to its lightweight properties.
The sound quality is decent, with a noise reduction rating of 25. This makes it suitable for use outdoors while mowing your lawn or even at your garage while woodworking.
The headphones require two AA batteries to operate, and replacing batteries is easy as the compartment is conveniently located at the headphone side.
The only issue you may have with these headphones is if you’re used to loud music on, you may find that even a max volume may not be enough for your listening pleasures.
Another downside we discovered is the difficulties of wearing these headphones if you wear a hard hat at work. You may find that the antenna is awkwardly positioned and may not be comfortable to wear with a hardhat.
In summary, the Honeywell Sync Digital is a good AM/FM headphone to consider if you are looking for the basic features and prefer the red tone over the usual fluorescent-colored ones.
- High visibility and easy navigability – red and black design, easy to operate buttons, 10 pre-set stations.
- Standard comfort features – padded headband, cushioned earpads, snap-in fit, air-flow technology.
- Easy battery replacement with convenient battery compartment location.
- Decent sound quality – noise reduction rating of 25.
- Some may find the loudness of the maximum volume inadequate.
- An awkward antenna position may make use with a hardhat uncomfortable.
7. Safety Works 10121816 MP3/AM/FM Digital Radio Ear Muffs
Safety Works is a US-based manufacturer of an extensive range of protective and industrial products. Apart from ear muffs, their range includes respirators, hard hats, vests, eye protectors, gloves, and so much more.
A notable feature of the Safety Works digital ear muffs is their ability to perfectly lock in your favorite stations. You don’t get the “fade out” of channels even while moving around for extended periods, which is great.
The Safety Works headphones also come with the expected comfort features, such as padded adjustable headbands and cushioned earpads. Speaking of earpads, they are actually built to be deeper and softer than similar products, which we find adds to their comfortable wear.
We also find the battery life to be impressive. For headphones that run on two AA batteries, we found that it was still running even after 40 hours of use. Definitely a big plus in the battery department right there!
Perhaps the only drawback with the Safety Works headphones is we don’t really think it’s suitable for major worksites, such as construction areas or roadworks. The design comes in a black and gray finish. So, it’s not really high visible, and lack of visibility is a potential hazard in some work environments.
Overall, if you want an AM/FM headphone for general outdoor use that locks in your favorite station, the Safety Works may be the one for you.
- Locks in your favorite stations perfectly without the fade-out.
- User-friendly – ability to pre-set 8 AM and 8 FM channels, digital LCD screen.
- Standard comfort features – padded headband and earmuffs, deeper and softer earpads.
- Impressive battery life – lasts over 40 hours on two AA batteries.
- It may not be suitable for major worksites due to its low-visibility design.
8. PROTEAR AM FM Hearing Protector with Stereo Radio
Protear is another Amazon retailer of audio and safety earmuffs. The brand currently has two products in their range, with the only difference being one has Bluetooth capability while the other doesn’t. The one that made it to our list is the latter, which is available in color variants of yellow or black.
A noteworthy feature of this Protear headphone is its rotatable earcups. It’s designed in such a way that the earcups can rotate into different angles, allowing you to find the most comfortable fit. Standard comfort features are also present, like the padded adjustable headband and an ultra-soft ear cushion.
In terms of its user-friendly features, the Protear has d an LCD display and buttons that are easy to operate. There is also a memory function that allows for storage of up to 8 each of your favorite AM and FM stations.
The Protear headphone units are powered by two alkaline AA batteries with the compartments located conveniently at the sides. We love that the battery compartment simply folds back instead of sliding off, which reduces the chances of the cover getting lost.
The sound quality and channel reception are also pretty good on this set of headphones. We found that there are rarely any muffled sounds, and with a noise reduction rating of 25 dB, you get more than enough noise protection levels for your ears.
One slight issue with the Protear is that you tend to get a bit of discomfort on initial wear. This may sound ironic considering we said these are fairly comfortable headphones. The thing is, on first-time wear, the earmuffs may feel a bit too tight, and the sensation can linger for a few minutes or hours. However, after prolonged use, we found that the ears do get used to them, and the tightness actually creates a nice seal to help with noise reduction.
So long story short, if you don’t mind a bit of discomfort initially, this might be a good AM/FM headphone for you to consider.
- Comfortable fit – rotatable earcups, padded and adjustable headbands, ultra-soft ear cushions.
- User-friendly – clear LCD display, easy to operate buttons, memory function.
- Convenient and easy battery installation and replacement.
- Good sound quality and channel reception – 25 dB noise reduction rating.
- Tight discomfort along with the earcups on initial wear.
9. Walker’s AM/FM Radio Muff with Digital Display
Walkers is an American brand focused on the manufacture of hearing protection solutions. Other than radio headphones, their range includes electronic earmuffs, electronic earbuds, passive muffs, kids’ muffs, earplugs, and various accessories.
A unique feature of Walker’s AM/FM radio muff is their extra-wide headband and ultra-soft finding. This is a great feature, especially if you find narrow headbands restrictive. Other comfort features included a padded and soft-cushioned earmuff for a snug and comfortable fit.
These headphones also have to be admired for their ease of use. They have a relatively large digital display screen that doubles as a clock. It also has a low battery indicator, so you know when it’s almost time to replace your batteries.
The sound quality is also great on these headphones, and in fact, the reception of local radio stations is almost crystal clear. These headsets have a noise reduction rating of 25dB, which gives your ears adequate protection when using around noisy environments.
The earmuffs have a channel memory function allowing you to pre-set eight different channels. Besides listening to your local AM and FM stations, you can also listen to music stored on your devices as the headphones come with an audio input jack.
One design flaw we spotted with the Walker’s AM/FM headphones is that the battery compartment may not last long-term use. Although the headset itself seems to be of strong and durable built, the battery compartment feels and looks fragile. And with the number of times you would be replacing its batteries, you may end up breaking it at some point. This part of the headset could definitely do with some design improvement for newer versions.
All in all, the Walker AM/FM radio muff is a great basic AM/FM headphone with all the necessary features.
- An extra-wide headband increases comfort.
- Easy to use with a digital display screen that doubles as a clock.
- Great sound quality with a noise reduction rating of 25dB.
- Channel memory function and multi-connectivity.
- The battery compartment could do with improvement in strength and durability.
10. Protear Bluetooth Radio Headphone
Inf Protear is another Amazon retailer of radio headphones.
The Inf Protear Bluetooth Radio Headphones come in a matte black design, with a PU leather headband. This design element makes it distinct from most of the headphones on this list. Other than the elegant look, it also has adequate padding and cushioning, contributing to its comfortable wear.
Connectivity-wise, the Inf Protear headphone is Bluetooth capable, so you can link it with your device for listening to other audio. This function would come in handy if you wanted to take a break from your local radio stations. It’s also a handy feature if you wanted to listen to your favorite podcasts on your phone or when taking hands-free calls.
We also have to give credit to the fact that the headphones are powered by 1200mAH rechargeable lithium batteries. Battery life is also relatively decent, lasting around 8 hours on a full charge – not too bad.
Sound quality is also fairly good, with a noise reduction rating of 25dB. The tight seal design around the earmuffs actually contributes to the noise canceling, which is great in itself. Quality of channel reception is also not affected by movement nor obstruction, so another plus in that department.
However, one warning is that if you’re the observant and meticulous audio enthusiast, you may find the bass on this headset to be lacking. However, this is not easily noticeable for the majority, so it’s not a major setback factor.
Another possible drawback to this brand of AM/FM headphones may be the relatively high price point, although again, for some, this may just be worth it.
Overall, if you want an elegant-looking, Bluetooth-enabled AM/FM headphone, the Inf Protear may be the best option for you.
- Elegant, matte black design with PU leather headband.
- Bluetooth connectivity for device pairing as well as hands-free calling.
- Rechargeable lithium batteries.
- Fairly good sound quality with a 25dB noise reduction rating.
- Relatively expensive.
- Bass may be inadequate for some audio enthusiasts.
What to Consider When Buying AM/FM Headphones
Headphones have always been popular in the gadget marketplace, and AM/FM ones aren’t exempt from this. Make sure you pay particular attention to certain features, like those mentioned below, when purchasing an AM/FM headphone.
Sound Quality and Volume Management
Needless to say, sound and volume should be the first things you look for when checking out any type of headphones.
This is particularly important for AM/FM headphones. The audio is directly transmitted from the station source and not your own device. Thus, pick one with great sound quality both indoors, outdoors, obstructed, or open spaces.
When trying a few headphones, try moving around the shop to see how the sound quality changes.
A headphone that allows easy and uncomplicated volume management is also an important feature and has noise-canceling technology.
Generally speaking, all headphones feel comfortable as soon as you pop them on. The test of comfort comes with extended use.
Try a headphone on for at least five minutes to see how comfortable it feels, particularly on your ears and over your head.
Look for ergonomic headphones with comfortable cushioning and one that’s adjustable according to your size and comfort levels.
Look for a headphone that will last you the length of your working day or a standard day trip. Battery life of at least 8 hours is good enough, but if you can get one that lasts longer, that’s obviously better.
Frequently Asked Questions
What batteries do I need for AM/FM headphones?
The batteries used in AM/FM headphones vary, but generally, the cheaper/lower-end ones require the standard AA/AAA batteries. This is okay for occasional use or if you don’t mind buying batteries every now and then. The great news is there are a lot of headphones now that have rechargeable batteries. So essentially, the battery type is dependant on the brand you choose.
Is it really important to have noise-canceling features on an AM/FM headphone?
Strictly speaking, no. If your headphone is for everyday use like walking, at home, working out, etc., then you don’t necessarily need noise-canceling technology.
If, however, you intend to listen to the radio at work, especially in the construction industry, then you probably need one. If you also use the headphones for operating noisy machinery or even for mowing your lawn, perhaps consider noise-canceling features. This is more for your ear’s protection for the longer term, and the audio quality, as a result, is only a bonus.
What is the best brand of AM/FM headphones?
The answer to this question is really dependant on how often, where, and how you intend to use your headphones. One’s budget range also plays a role in determining the “best” brand currently available in the market.
AM/FM headphones are handy gadgets for our listening pleasures and give our ears adequate noise protection, especially around loud environments. We’ve gone through the current AM/FM headphone market, and the 3M WorkTunes Headphones clearly stand out as the winner.
Its design simply ticks all the important features: comfortable ear cushions, adjustable headbands, lightweight, and low-pressure. It’s also lightweight, which makes it perfect, especially for wearing with hardhats at the workplace. Sound quality is perfect with its 40-mm high-fidelity speakers and a 24db NRR. Finally, it’s jam-packed with additional impressive features, and the price is reasonably affordable.