So you’ve decided to get a new pair of headphones to please the audiophile in you. Great! But now you come to the tough part: choosing headphones. With so many different brands offering so many different models, each featuring dozens of unique specs, it can be a real challenge to know how to compare headphones. If you’re facing this problem you’ve come to the right place.
In this article we will take the guesswork out of comparing headphones to help you choose the model that perfectly meets your specific requirements.
When comparing headphones online, we suggest that you avoid getting into the intricacies of the specs listed by the seller. Many times they are misleading and confusing, and it isn’t practical to compare so many different brands and models based on their specifications.
We suggest instead that you compare the headphones based on the three main aspects – design, noise-cancelling ability and wireless features.
Getting the right headphones: what to look for
When looking for headphones online or offline, you will see that they vary widely in terms of design. The two most popular types of designs are over-the-ear and snug in-canal headphones. While both these designs have their own merits, we prefer the traditional over-the-ear design.
There are many reasons why over-the-ear or around-the-ear headphones are better than in-canal earphones.
First, they are able to produce richer bass as they come with larger drivers than in-ear earphones. Secondly, they do not rely on the in-ear seal to be able to deliver high-quality sound. Music lovers mostly prefer traditional headphones over the in-ear styles because they are more comfortable to wear and are much easier to put on and take off.
However, it cannot be denied that these headphones are bulkier than those with an in-ear design, so they are less suited for the gym.
Noise cancellation ability
Another important factor worth considering when it comes to comparing headphones is their noise-cancelling abilities. If you are using regular headphones then you can increase the volume to full blast to block out outside sound. However that would mean hurting your ears.
The best option is to invest in noise-canceling headphones. While Bose noise-canceling headphones are the best, they can cost a few hundred dollars. Thankfully, these days you can find decent noise-canceling functionality in low-cost headphones too.
With noise-canceling headphones, you can shut out the annoying noises of the outside world and enjoy music at your preferred volume level.
The noise-canceling headphones are built with special technology that uses microphones on the ear cups to measure outside noise and adjust the signal accordingly to cancel it out. This is quite an effective technology that uses the power of noise-canceling circuitry.
If you are not sure about buying headphones with noise-cancelling ability then you can get some over-ear headphones that naturally block noise to some extent. This technology is called noise isolation and it works by simply sealing the ears with good quality ear cups. They might not be as effective as noise-cancelling headphones but they are cheaper.
The third important factor to consider when comparing headphones is whether you want a wired or wireless headset. Wireless headphones can come handy in situations when you don’t want dangling cables interfering with your workout or sleep. Apple has ditched the cables on its iPhone 7 headphones and they are compatible with most of the modern devices.
Early Bluetooth wireless headphones struggled with sound quality but after years of continual improvement, they are now able to deliver high-quality sound. Given the fact that the data signal in Bluetooth headphones is compressed, the manufacturers have now found ways to boost the signal to compensate for its shortcomings in terms of sound quality.
Brands like Bose and Sennheiser offer some of the best quality headphones that can cost you hundreds of dollars. However, this doesn’t mean that you spend top dollar to be able to enjoy music using headphones. If you are shopping on budget, you can find some really cool headsets for under $50.
Make sure you read customer reviews online to get an idea of the sound quality and performance before placing your order.