Do you want to enjoy your music player or video games to the maximum? Are you disappointed by the inferior quality headphones that came with your smartphone? Do you work in a noisy office space where you can’t listen to the other person over phone, or enjoy the music you carry in your phone? If you have faced any of these situations you need new set of headphones. No matter how expensive your phone or music player is, the stock headphones included in its package are average at best.
Gone are the days when all headphones were of the same design and you could buy the one from your trusted brand. At present there are plenty of them available and what works for your friend might not work for you. We have put together this easy to understand guide to help you navigate through the best headphones this year and choose the right one.
Things to Consider for Headphones
Headphones have evolved a lot in the past decade and they do a lot more than just making sound. Some of these functions are:
- Remote control of your mobile device
You would hardly find a headphone that ticks all of these boxes. Thus, before diving into the ocean of headphones, we recommend you pick the features that are non-negotiable for your and the ones that are nice to haves but not mandatory.
Top 10 Headphones Ultimate Ranking
Unlike other electronic goods (say a memory card, hard drive, a laptop or even a TV), buying a headphone online is not a good idea, unless you have tried the sound. The reasons would become clear as we list out the common aspects to watch out for before buying headphones:
- Sound. That’s what you buy headphones for, isn’t it? Other than producing crystal clear sound, headphones should also be able to cancel the noise produced from surroundings. If you are a real audiophile, you will be able to pin point the differences in bass and treble as well, other than the usual maximum volume level that an average user would compare.
- Ergonomics. This is a very important feature, keeping your health in mind. If you plan on using your headphones continuously for hours, we recommend you avoid in-ear and ear bud varieties. These might appear comfortable and play good sound, there will be little (if any) noise isolation and your ear would definitely pain after prolonged usage. Circum-aural and supra-aural varieties work best in terms of noise isolation and ergonomics, although they come more expensive than the in-ear and earbuds.
- Wireless Connectivity, Inline Microphone and Control Buttons are few of the things that are of great convenience, though you might not want to compromise on the ergonomics and sound quality to get these.
Keep in mind that you buy headphones for quality sound minus the pain. Additional features are always nice to have but we don’t advise sacrificing any of the above two for the bells and whistles.
3 Best Headphones Reviews
You buy headphones for performance, comfort, compatibility and overall quality. This one ticks all of those boxes without requiring you to pay over the roof. It is already a bestseller and has had its performance praised by critics, audio engineers and reviewers. Its circumaural design fits snugly around your ear and it plays out natural, clear and enhanced sound. Its noise cancellation ability makes it particularly useful in loud environments. It retains the excellent quality of its predecessor (ATH M50) and irons out the little glitches such as improved removable cables and ergonomics (no pain whatsoever after prolonged usage).
The ear-cups have a swivel friendly design, which lets you rotate them through 90 degrees which facilitates one – ear monitoring. Combine these with robust material, detachable cable and professional – grade padding and you have the best of both worlds, i.e. a headphone that produces excellent sound and does not require to be looked after like a baby as it has the flexibility and durability to survive rough handling.
Sennheiser has produced some stunning headphones and this pair is the latest example. Sound quality and noise cancellation are absolutely top notch, as you would expect from a Sennheiser product. Luxurious ear pads and detachable cable make it easy to store and carry around. Unique over the ear, open back design result in natural output but that can be a negative when you are at noisy places like a subway where you don’t want environmental noise to come in (or quiet places like a library where you don’t want others to listen).
If you are looking for top quality headphones to be used in a quiet setting (such as your home or a music studio) without shelling out a lot, these are highly recommended.
When an industry leader like Bose uses “noise cancelling” in the name of its headphones, you expect them to have come up with something pathbreaking and the QuietComfort 20 will not disappoint you. If your primary use is going to be at public places such as the gym and subway, you want your music to stand out and these achieve exactly that. In ear design does have its set of limitations as you are bound to experience some discomfort during prolonged use but the sound quality more than makes up for that small blemish. The big positive of earbuds is that they are really portable and can be carried around in their little pouches, which completes the package.