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Best fake AirPods of 2021

Included in this guide:

Best fake AirPods
(Image credit: Regan Coule/Tom's Guide)

The best fake AirPods are designed to replicate the iconic stemmed design of the Apple AirPods and AirPods Pro — albeit without Apple's premium pricing. Most recent earbuds tend more towards a rounded shape, like the Beats Studio Buds and Sony WF-1000XM4, but if you prefer the elongated look, these could be your most economical options.

Frankly, Amazon is covered with AirPods clones, but a lot of these tend to just be cheap knock-offs with no effort put towards making them an actually serviceable set of headphones. That’s why we’re highlighting the pairs below: even if they don’t beat the very best wireless earbuds on sound quality, we know from our testing that they have genuine qualities to offer. Read on, then, for our picks of the best fake AirPods.

What are the best fake AirPods?

The best fake AirPods can be difficult to track because they're often sold through third-party retailers with no association with Apple. As such, Amazon pulls the knock-offs from time to time to avoid copyright complaints. We try to keep an eye on the availability of the buds, and update this round-up as sale information changes.

Currently, QCY T5S stands out as the best fake AirPods. These buds are water-resistant, produce high-quality sound, and are very affordable, especially after undergoing a price drop on Walmart (at the time of publishing). They also come with a low-latency Gaming Mode and customizable features that can be accessed through a companion app. You can purchase T5S in Black or White.

The EarFun Air is second on our best fake AirPods list. These buds outperform the AirPods on battery and sound, while offer IPX7 waterproof protection, something that's not all that common on the most expensive earbuds. This model also isolates ambient noise very well.

Mobvoi TicPods Free is our third pick for the best Fake AirPods. These colorful long-stem buds come with solid sound and noise isolation. Their unique shape allows for a secure and comfortable fit. Also, the touch controls and digital assistants perform well for seamless operation.

The best fake AirPods you can buy today

Best Fake AIrPods: QCY T5S

(Image credit: QCY)

1. QCY T5S

The best Fake AirPods overall

Specifications
Size: 1.6 x 0.3 x 0.2 inches (charging case)
Weight: 0.1 ounces
Battery Life (Rated): 6 hours, 35 hours (charging case)
Bluetooth Range: 30 feet (10 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Impressive sound+Accompanying app+Comfy and snug Strong+Strong Bluetooth connection
Reasons to avoid
-Touch controls are too sensitive-Lacks bass

An upgrade to the T5, QCY’s latest release brings new features, surprisingly good sound, and stronger connectivity into the fold. There is a companion app available that provides some customization, from the button functions to sound adjustment via equalizer. You’ll get crisp, high-quality sound for the price, granted the bass levels won’t match what the AirPods produces. Gaming Mode returns and helps reduce audio lag when playing video games. Having Bluetooth 5.1 is also huge for maintaining a fast and stable connection with compatible devices.

Battery life exceeds the AirPods by an hour and the charging case holds 11 more hours than its rival, though be mindful that high volume and Gaming Mode will decrease playtime by 30 minutes to an hour. The touch controls are a little too sensitive as well.

Read our full QCY T5S review.

Best fake Airpods: EarFun Air

(Image credit: EarFun)

2. EarFun Air

Fine-sounding fake AirPods with lengthy playtime

Specifications
Size: 2 x 1.2 x 2.2 inches
Weight: 0.2 ounces
Battery Life (Rated): 7 hours; 35 hours (with charging case)
Bluetooth Range: 49 feet (15 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Bright soundstage+Excellent noise isolation+Stable battery life
Reasons to avoid
-Poor touch controls-Charging case is bulky and heavy

A sleek all-black design and powerful specs for a budget-friendly price, EarFun has clearly taken cues from other sub-$100 competitors like Anker. The Air is a solid effort that’s well engineered on the audio end, giving high-pitched vocals prominence on recordings, while producing rich bass depth to balance out sound. We attribute the Air’s resonant output to the buds’ fit, as the tips create a tight seal around the ear to keep music from leaking out and noise from seeping in. You’re also getting much more playtime out of these than the regular AirPods or AirPods Pro; we appreciate the buds coming fully charged right out of the box.

The charging case is wireless charging compatible, but it’s also larger and heavier than most other models. However, the Air’s biggest problem is the touch controls, which fail to work most of the time.

Read our full EarFun Air review.

best Fake AirPods: Mobvoi TicPods Free

(Image credit: Mobvoi)

3. Mobvoi TicPods Free

Colorful wireless earbuds with adaptive controls

Specifications
Size: 1.6 x 0.5 x 0.2 inches
Weight: 0.6 ounces
Battery Life (Rated): 4 hours; 18 hours (with charging case)
Bluetooth Range: 30 feet (10 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Water-resistant design+Effective noise isolation+Loud and clear sound+Vibrant color options
Reasons to avoid
-No companion app-Limited gesture controls

The Mobvoi TicPods Free is another top pick for the best fake AirPods since it packs plenty of functionality into a minimalist, dangling design. The buds offer up to 18 hours of playtime with its bundled case, and their intuitive gesture controls make for seamless playback and call management. They also produce loud, clean audio, and are compatible with Google Assistant and Alexa, which makes them more useful to Android users. The unique shape and multiple ear tips allow for a more customized fit as well.

Thanks to a recent markdown, the TicPods can be had for almost half the price of Apple’s signature buds, with minimal trade-offs. Unlike the AirPods with their monotone white color scheme, TicPods come in three shades, including our favorite, Lava. 

Read our full TicPods Free review.

Best fake AirPods: Anker Soundcore Life P3 review

(Image credit: Regan Coule/Future)

4. Anker Soundcore Life P3

The best fake AirPods with ANC

Specifications
Size: 1.5 x 0.9 x 0.9 inches
Weight: 0.2 ounces (per bud)
Battery Life (Rated): 6 hours (ANC on), 7 hours (ANC off), 30 hours (with charging case and ANC on), 35 hours (with charging case and ANC off)
Bluetooth Range: : 30 feet (10 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: : Yes
Reasons to buy
+Customizable sound+ANC on the cheap+Good battery life
Reasons to avoid
-Call quality disappoints-Touch controls don't always work

With the Letscom T19 gone MIA from shelves, it's up to the Anker Soundcore Life P3 to provide an affordable noise-cancelling option. With an MSRP of just $79, this pair is certainly accessible by ANC standards, and the effect is pretty good for the money. As is general audio quality, with a warm, satisfying sound signature. Battery life stands up to the added strain of noise cancellation as well.

Surely there must have been cut corners, to get premium features on a set of buds this cheap? Maybe slightly: the touch sensors and call quality could both be better. But as as ANC earbuds go, few are as affordable as the Soundcore Life P3, and even fewer can perform as well. And yes, it's available in white.

Read our full Anker Soundcore Life P3 review.

Best fake AirPods: TaoTronics SoundLiberty 53

(Image credit: TaoTronics)

5. TaoTronics SoundLiberty 53

The best fake AirPods overall

Specifications
Size: 3.2 x 1.5 x 1.1 inches
Weight: 0.7 ounces
Battery Life (Rated): 5 hours; 50 hours (with charging case)
Bluetooth Range: 33 feet (10 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Impressive audio performance+Slightly better battery life than the AirPods Pro+Portable and powerful charging case
Reasons to avoid
-Controls and fit could be better-Lag with virtual assistant

The model that put TaoTronics on the true wireless map, the SoundLiberty 53 (previously known as the TWS TT-BH053) packs surprisingly good audio and respectable battery life into an AirPods-style design. Its biggest feature is the charging case, which has been scaled down to accommodate portability and holds up to 50 hours of playtime. That’s pretty amazing for wireless earbuds priced under $50. TaoTronics also sells the buds in black, if you’re trying to get away with that whole AirPods-custom-paint-job look from a distance. 

Just be aware that while these are our current favourite fake AirPods, a low price doesn’t guarantee perfection. During testing, we noticed the tap gestures were highly sensitive and often misinterpreted commands to raise volume or enable the digital assistant. There was also some lag present when calling up Siri and Google Assistant; we often had to wait a few seconds before speaking or else the digital assistant wouldn’t recognize commands.

Best fake AirPods: LG Tone Free HBS-FN6

(Image credit: Regan Coule/Tom's Guide)

6. LG Tone Free HBS-FN6

Fake AirPods that clean themselves

Specifications
Size: 1.29 x 0.63 x 0.98 inches
Weight: 0.19 ounces
Battery Life (Rated): 6 hours (single charge), 18 hours (with charging case)
Bluetooth Range: 35 feet (10 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Surprisingly good sound+Terrific ambient-listening mode+UVnano technology to sterilize the buds+Great noise isolation
Reasons to avoid
-Touch controls are finicky-Look too similar to the AirPods

Any pair of wireless earbuds that can sterilize themselves deserves cool points, but the Tone Free HBS-FN6 is more than just a one-trick pony. Despite sharing the same bland long-stem, white plastic appearance as the AirPods, LG’s buds sound far superior, thanks to Meridian audio technology that creates an expansive soundstage to enjoy boomy lows and detailed highs. The companion app expands functionality by allowing users to customize the controls and sound via well-engineered EQs. We even found LG’s ambient-listening mode to be right up there with some of the best; the dual-mic system picks up external sounds across the frequency spectrum with precision.

The touch sensors can be frustrating to deal with at times, not registering tap gestures, which could be a deal-breaker for those who find themselves often adjusting volume or activating the digital assistant several times throughout the day.

Read our full LG Tone Free HBS-FN6 review.

Best fake AirPods: Anker Soundcore Liberty Air

(Image credit: Anker)

7. Anker Soundcore Liberty Air

Great sound and comfort for the price

Specifications
Size: 0.7 x 0.5 x 0.2 inches
Weight : 2.1 ounces
Battery Life (Rated): 5 hours; 20 hours (with charging case)
Bluetooth Range: 30 feet (10 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Clearer sound than the AirPods+Lightweight with a secure fit+Standardized battery life
Reasons to avoid
-Poor touch controls-Design scratches easily

We have always considered the Liberty Air True to be the first legitimate AirPods clone when it released back in 2019, and for a few good reasons. One, sound quality surpasses the performance on most of the models in its price class, as well as the current-gen AirPods, producing clear, bass-forward audio to enjoy contemporary music genres. Two, the inclusion of ear tips is a huge bonus, delivering a pleasant and stabilized fit. Three, the 5 hours of playtime you get is pretty close to what Apple’s buds offer and is longer than the AirPods Pro, though the latter requires extra juice to operate noise cancellation, which these buds don’t have. 

Had Anker managed to make the touch controls more reliable and the design less of a scratch-n-scuff magnet, then the Liberty Air could have been a bigger threat to the real thing. As it stands, it's a still a worthy member of the best fake AirPods club, and is a lot cheaper than the newer Liberty Air 2.

Read our full Anker Soundcore Liberty Air review.

Best fake Airpods: Urbanista Stockholm

(Image credit: Urbanista)

8. Urbanista Stockholm

AirPods lookalikes with strong wireless performance

Specifications
Size: 0.8 x 0.4 x 0.4 inches
Weight: 0.2 ounces
Battery Life (Rated): 8 hours, 40 hours (with charging case)
Bluetooth Range: 30 feet (10 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Decent audio+Reliable connectivity+Slightly more attractive than the AirPods
Reasons to avoid
-Subpar battery life-Poor noise isolation

This pair of earbuds may share the same silhouette as the AirPods, but the Stockholm is a more fashion-forward option, thanks to a matte finish that comes in multiple colors. Bluetooth 5.0 holds up strong, so you’ll be able stream music and take calls several feet away from your audio source without experiencing any dropout. The buds also connect instantly to devices when removed from the charging case. Sound is crisp, but don’t expect much bass or highs when listening to music; you’ll want to stick to vocal-driven recordings to enjoy audio performance. We recommend the buds more for podcasts and videos. 

Where the Stockholm loses points is in battery life, which is below standard at 3.5 hours on a single charge. That's a far cry from the company's latest over-ear headphones, the Urbanista Miami.

Best fake Airpods: Lasuney True Wireless Earbuds

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

9. Lasuney True Wireless Earbuds

The best waterproof fake AirPods

Specifications
Size: 0.7 x 1.8 x 0.7 inches
Weight: 0.4 ounces (per bud)
Battery Life (Rated): 5 hours, 30 hours (with charging case)
Bluetooth Range: 35 feet (10 meters)
Digital Assistant Support: Yes
Reasons to buy
+Nicely designed+Secure fit+Easy-to-use controls
Reasons to avoid
-Lacking bass-Poor mic

A newer release, the Lasuney True Wireless Earbuds merit a look based on design, ease of use, and you guessed it, price. IPX7-rated waterproofing gives you stronger protection than the AirPods Pro (IPX4 water-resistant), making these buds wearable for workouts and around the pool. Just don’t be foolish and dunk your head in the water with them on your ears because they aren’t built to survive submersion. The egg-shaped speakers ensure an agreeable fit and rest pleasantly on the concha. Physical buttons are placed at the top of each bud to make executing functions a breeze as well. These aren’t bad hallmarks to work with for $20.

Sound is crisp for the most part, but we do wish there was a greater emphasis on lows and highs. The microphone is also abysmal and won’t do you any good when activating Siri or taking phone calls. 

Read our full Lasuney True Wireless Earbuds review.

How to choose the best fake AirPods for you

If you’re here, you’ve probably decided you want to get a pair of the best fake AirPods instead of the real thing. Both AirPods and AirPods Pro regularly go on sale, so be sure to check out our updated AirPods sales pages to see if the Apple-made earbuds fall in your budget before spending money on lower-quality knock offs from different manufacturers.

While all of the pairs above adopt the AirPods’s iconic, white plastic aesthetic, several sacrifice audio quality in the process. If you want a pair of the best fake AirPods to make it seem like you’re sporting real ones, prioritize a replicated design more than how the buds sound. But if you still want your new headphones to get you in the groove for commutes, workouts or phone calls, consider choosing a pair above that offer decent audio technology. Even if they don’t look exactly like genuine AirPods. 

How we test the best fake AirPods

We call in and test the best-selling fake AirPods from Amazon and other suppliers taking note of when pairs are pulled from the website or re-listed under different product names. When new styles appear, we call them in and consider them for this list.

For reviews of the best headphones, design and appearance take a backseat to performance and battery life. But for this list of the best fake AirPods, we prioritize how much each pair looks like real AirPods, pointing out the aesthetic differences of the cases and buds. 

After we gauge design, we listen to music, catch up on podcasts and make calls using the best fake AirPods contenders. We tune our ears to catch static or other faults with these low-cost buds, and decide whether they sound good enough to recommend. The headphones listed here might not be perfect, but they've at least passed the test.

Alex Bracetti

A lifestyle journalist with an affinity for consumer products, Alex has over a decade of experience and has worked with popular publications such as Complex, Thrillist, Men’s Health, Gear Patrol, AskMen, and Hoop Magazine. He currently focuses on audio, reviewing the most coveted headphones in the market for both Tom’s Guide and Laptop Magazine.