Soundcore Space One review: Bargain noise-cancelling headphones for the masses

For the price, Soundcore's latest over-ear headphones have some seriously impressive specs

Soundcore Space One review
(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)
T3 Verdict

The Soundcore Space One aren't the most premium headphones, but these sleek cans are an absolute steal at this price point. You get decent, bass-rich sound, comfortable folding design, adaptive ANC and transparency modes, and a suite of additional features, such as HearID, for an impressively low price – it's hard to argue with that.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Sound tailored to your hearing

  • +

    Adaptive noise cancelling

  • +

    Ergonomic, comfortable fit

  • +

    Wear detection

  • +

    Folding design

  • +

    Long battery life

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    ANC needs refining

  • -

    Some features are almost hidden in the Soundcore app (e.g. wear detection)

  • -

    Feels less durable than some premium over-ear cans

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Soundcore Space One review in a nutshell: fantastic value-for-money headphones with adaptive noise cancellation, personalised sound, comfortable ear cups and folding design.

Soundcore by Anker is a popular brand, thanks to their ability to design audio products – primarily headphones, earphones, and portable speakers – that sound good but don't cost the earth. Their latest product, the Soundcore Space One, fits perfectly into this mould and offers a bunch of excellent features for not a lot of money.

The new cans aren't the best noise-cancelling headphones, but they are an amazing value-for-money alternative for similar audio products from big-ticket brands such as Sony, Bose and Beats. Sure, some corners have been cut, but you still get a lot of headphones for your hard-earned cash. Should you buy one? Let's find out.

Soundcore Space One review: price and availability

The Soundcore Space One headphones were released in August 2023 and are available to buy now at Soundcore UK and Soundcore US for a recommended retail price of £89.99/ $99.99, which is an excellent price—AU price and availability TBC. The cans are available in three colours: Jet Black, Latte Cream, and Sky Blue. I tested the Latte Cream colourway.

Soundcore Space One review

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)

Soundcore Space One review: specifications

  • Driver size: 40mm dynamic speaker
  • Maximum Volume: 93dB
  • Sensitivity/SPL: 115dB @1KHz 1mW
  • Speaker Impedance: 16Ω
  • Harmonic Distortion: Input 0.126V, 50Hz-8KHz ≦3%
  • Frequency: 20-20KHz
  • Signal to Noise Ratio (dB): 70dB, f=1kHz, Pin=1Pa (A-Weighted)
  • Sensitivity: -35dB, f=1KHz, Pin=1Pa, 0dB=1V/Pa
  • Codecs: AAC, SBC, LDAC
  • Microphone: 3-MIC, AI-powered
  • Ingress protection: N/A
  • Active noise cancellation: Adaptive Noise Cancelling (depth of noise cancelling: 40dB)
  • Transparency mode: yes
  • Battery life: 40 hours (ANC on), 55 hours (ANC off)
  • Weight: 265g
  • Connection: Bluetooth 5.3
  • Other features: 

Soundcore Space One review

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)

Soundcore Space One review: design and build quality

The Soundcore Space One look handsome in the images, and I liked the new colourways, which reminded me of the Beats Studio Pro with its earthy tones. Not like Soundcore's cans are earthy; they are trying to look different, not just a cheaper, dumbed-down version of popular brands' products, an approach many affordable headphone manufacturers adopted over the years.

The Space One look good but feel slightly less premium in the hand. The headband and the earcups are made of a combination of PU leather and cushioning, which are soft and comfortable but not quite as sleek as – you know – premium over-ear cans. For the price, though, they are perfect and come across as decent-quality headphones.

On an anecdotal level, one of my colleagues mistook the Soundcore Space One for the Beats Studio Pro, partially because Soundcore's logo looks similar to Beats (from a distance), and the material of the headphones looks sophisticated. Long story short, the Soundcore Space One look the part.

Soundcore Space One review

Soundcore Space One folded in their carry bag

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)

They don't just look cool but also fit well, thanks to the large ear cups and the 8° Floating-Axis Design. This allows the cups to move independently and to a very high degree, ensuring they don't press on any parts of your ears/skull the wrong way. The soft PU leather cover of the headband and the cups is rather comfortable, too.

My only concern is the longevity of the headphones, which I can't comment on after just a couple of weeks of use. So far, the plastic joints that facilitate the folding mechanism of the Soundcore Space One are fine, but I wonder how many folds you'll get out of them before they snap.

The all-plastic construction might not lend an air of indestructibility to the Soundcore Space One, but it sure helps them feel light. At only 265 grams, the Space One headphones are what I'd call market average in terms of weight. They are lighter than the bass-heavy Skullcandy Crusher ANC 2 (332 grams) and the top-rated Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless (293 grams).

One cool feature (at this price point) is wear detection, which, strangely, isn't activated automatically. To activate it, you have to pair your Space One with the Soundcore app, go into the settings, and set up the feature. I found the process slightly strange, as I assumed wear detection was good to go straight out of the box. That said, it's not hard to set up the function once you find the option in the app. I just wish it was highlighted a bit better.

Soundcore Space One review

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)

Soundcore Space One review: audio performance

Soundcore puts the most emphasis on the active noise cancellation prowess of the Space One, claiming that the cans offer twice as substantial noise reduction as the Soundcore Life Q30 headphones. Said ANC is also adaptive, meaning it automatically adjusts based on the environmental sound levels around you.

ANC is robust enough, although it's far from the best on the market. The best noise-cancelling audio product title goes to the Apple AirPods Pro 2, closely followed by the Beats Studio Buds Plus. Of course, those are much smaller than the Soundcore Space One headphones and have the advantage of sitting in your ear canal, which improves passive noise cancellation.

But back to the Space One. Active noise cancellation does an admirable job of reducing noise levels. However, in my experience, it struggles with blocking out some sounds in the lower register. Instead, it makes them sound muffled and distant but still audible. Increasing the volume helps to drown out these sounds, but you won't be able to completely cancel them out.

Soundcore app screenshots

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)

On a more positive note, the Soundcore Space One headphones have one of my favourite features, HearID,  which tailors the sound to your hearing. This is especially useful for older users who might not pick up sounds in the higher register as well anymore. I activated this as soon as I started using the cans, and they sounded pretty good as a result.

Of course, activating HearID can significantly alter the sound profile, but I doubt audiophiles would opt for the Space One anyway. For everyday use, they sound more than good enough, albeit a bit bass-heavy, which is not all that surprising from a Soundcore product (they often are). And although there is no Dolby Audio or spatial sound, the sound emanating from the cans is full-bodied and well-balanced.

The headphones have a transparency mode and a feature called Easy Chat, which resembles Apple AirPod Pro 2's upcoming Adaptive Audio. You can activate Easy Chat by covering the left face plate or starting to speak (the latter is in beta mode). Easy Chat automatically reduces the volume and increases mic sensitivity, so you can chat with people without stopping the music.

Admittedly, covering the left face plate while talking to people is clunky, but once the algorithm is trained to perform the task automatically, this will be a killer feature for sub-$100 headphones.

Soundcore Space One review

(Image credit: Matt Kollat/T3)

Soundcore Space One review: verdict

It feels extremely nitpicky to criticise the Soundcore Space One. They aren't the most premium headphones, nor are they excellent audiophile audio equipment, but at this price point, these sleek cans are an absolute steal. For $100/£90, you get decent, bass-rich sound, comfortable folding design, adaptive ANC and transparency modes, as well as a suite of additional features, such as HearID.

I can't stress enough how good value-for-money the Soundcore Space One are. You won't get anything nearly as capable as these cans for this price that aren't just cheap knock-offs of big brands. If you're on a budget and don't want to compromise too much on sound or comfort, you should seriously consider the Soundcore Space One.

Soundcore Space One review: also consider

It's hard to recommend any other headphones in this price bracket. If you can't quite spend as much as the Soundcore Space One, you can consider the JBL Tune 660NC. Strong, rich audio with a heavy focus on the low-end is what you get from these headphones. They aren't as bassy as the Space One, but their punchy sound performance paired with a simple, smart design, excellent noise cancelling capabilities and hours upon hours of battery life make these some of the best budget headphones you can buy. Read Yasmine's full JBL Tune 660NC review.

Matt Kollat
Section Editor | Active

Matt Kollat is a journalist and content creator who works for and its magazine counterpart as an Active Editor. His areas of expertise include wearables, drones, fitness equipment, nutrition and outdoor gear. He joined T3 in 2019. His byline appears in several publications, including Techradar and Fit&Well, and more. Matt also collaborated with other content creators (e.g. Garage Gym Reviews) and judged many awards, such as the European Specialist Sports Nutrition Alliance's ESSNawards. When he isn't working out, running or cycling, you'll find him roaming the countryside and trying out new podcasting and content creation equipment.