Choosing the perfect pair of headphones

by Emily on September 13, 2017

in Articles

Headphones are the single most useful piece of tech accessory most of us use on a daily basis. With so many different types, models and price ranges to choose from, getting a new pair of headphones can be quite a difficult task to accomplish. Although there are some factors you should consider before making your decision, have in mind that there isn’t a single right answer that will work for everyone. At the end of the day, it all boils down to personal choice.

Form Factor

Headphones come in many different shapes and sizes that fit and sound completely different from one another. However, based on they fit the ear, almost all headphones can be placed in three specific categories: in-ear, on-ear, and over-ear. This is one of the first things you should decide on when looking for a new pair of headphones and the best way to reach this decision is to consider where you plan on using them and for which type of music.

In-ear

As the name implies, In-ear headphones and earbuds are small headphones that go into the ear. Cheap earbuds are often sold with various music players and sit in the bowl of your ear, while the in-ear headphones need to be placed inside the ear canal. They are lightweight and portable, making them an ideal traveling companion. They are fairly comfortable but due to their size, the sound quality is far cry from that produced by an average pair of over-the-ear headphones. If you don’t like putting things inside your ear canal, then they are definitely not the right choice for you.

On-ear

On-ear or ear pad headphones sit on the ear and don’t completely cover it. More often than not, they are open-back models meaning they not only leak music to the outside but can also let in some of the surrounding noise. They are fairly comfortable and portable and most people prefer to use them at home or at the gym. Since the majority of them features an open-back design, this makes them practically unusable in situations where there’s a lot of noise.

Over-ear

Full-sized or over-the-ear headphones feature ear cups which completely surround the ear. Although they are extremely comfortable and often produce the best sound-quality, they can be fairly large and cumbersome to wear outside of the house. Since they completely cover the ear, they can make your ears very hot when used for prolonged periods of time.

Noise cancellation

Noise canceling headphones can pick up the surrounding noise, isolate it and play an inverted version of that soundwave in order to completely cancel it out. They are the perfect choice for office workers and people who fly frequently. The only issue is that they can be somewhat expensive for the average user, but then again, they aren’t exactly made for the average user.

Wireless

Wireless headphones are a dream come true for people who keep yanking their head because they forgot to take off the headphones. Most of them work via Bluetooth, but there are varieties that work on radio or Wi-Fi signal. The only real problem is that they need to be recharged often and rarely produce the same quality as wired headphones.

Which ones are the best?

If you have high standards when it comes to sound, then you might want to set aside some cash and invest it in a pair of high-quality on- or over-ear AKG headphones. Those who are constantly on the go and would like to kill some time between destinations should consider getting a pair of moderately-priced ear buds. Gamers and those who generally spend a lot of time in front of the computer prefer large, over-the-ear headphones because they are comfortable to wear for prolonged periods of time.

Honestly, there is no right or wrong answer to this question. Your decision should be based on comfort, sound quality, the type of use and, of course, your budget. Make sure to try them on and test them out with the music of your choice. Just avoid getting the cheapest kind of headphones – they not only sound awful but they also break easily.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

antonio September 30, 2017 at 10:33

Hey Emily this a great article for newbies who want to buy a pair of headphones . I personally picked some tips from here and will keep in min when i choose my next pair of headphones. Thank you.

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Josh Roberts November 23, 2017 at 16:21

Hey Klaus,

Thanks for sharing this great article by Emily. I am actually planning to get a good headphone present for my teenager kid this Christmas! This is very helpful. 🙂

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Jayson Brown November 30, 2017 at 18:44

Very Informative article on the choosing the different types of headphones on the market today. Majorly for me sound quality,comfort and budget are what i use to choose my headphones and also daily habits play a great role too.

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