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Best Headphones 2021 • 6 Headphones Reviews

Headphones are one of the most popular tech devices these days. There are so many models that have been adapted for different uses. Whether listening to music, playing video games or practicing sport, today’s headphones allow us to enjoy amazing sound quality. However, other factors such as comfort and design also come into play when buying new headphones. If your new headphones don’t feel comfortable, it likely won’t be long before you decide to stop using them.

Headphones Leaderboard 2021

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Tested Products 6
Hours Spent
Hours Spent 65
Evaluated Studies
Evaluated Studies 71
Considered Reviews
Considered Reviews 292

What is a product headphone and how does it work?

Headphones are electronic devices that connect to sound players and allow an electrical signal to be converted into a sound signal. This sound signal can be heard with speakers that sit in or around your ears. In general, they are fairly lightweight and easy to carry.

What are the types of headphones?

One of the most common ways to categorize headphones is by their shape. They can be split into two distinct types: over-ear headphones and in-ear headphones. However, the over-ear headphones, can be split further into two categories; supra-aurals (headphones with pads that sit on the ears) and circumaurals (headphones designed to completely enclose the ears).

Over-ear headphones

They surround the head completely. Their dimensions are larger, therefore they are also heavier. Most video game headphones use this design.

In-ear headphones

They are inserted directly into the ear, sealing the hole with rubber bands. In-ear headphones are much lighter and smaller in size. They are easier to transport. The most suitable design for sports headphones.

Advantages and disadvantages of headphones

Having headphones allows you to listen to music and talk on the phone much more freely, as well as privately. You can use your headphones whenever, wherever without worrying that you are bothering others with your music or media. Additionally, headphones have also become an important part of fashion and style for many people over the last several years.

Advantages : 

  • They allow you to listen to music without worrying about disturbing others
  • You can use them anywhere. They are lightweight and easy to transport. They are perfect for travelling
  • Other people won’t know the music you’re listening to. With headphones you’ll have complete privacy
  • They’re also an attractive fashion accessory

Disadvantages : 

  • Intensive use may cause hearing discomfort
  • Using while driving or riding a bicycle can carry certain risks

Shopping Criteria for headphones

What will you use them for?

You don’t need the same type of headphones to listen to music at home in a relaxed way as you do to play video games or as you do when you’re travelling and listening to music on the way to class or work. So if you’re going to use them outside the house, whether it’s travelling or in your day-to-day life, you’re interested in more durable headphones.

If you’re going to use them to play video games, it’s a good idea to choose ones with a gaming profile. On the other hand, if you want to wear headphones with an attractive design, you should take a look at the Beats headphones, although they’re not the only ones that stand out for their design. Luckily, there are options for all tastes.

Sensitivity

Sensitivity is related to the sound power offered by the headphones and is measured in decibels (dB). In that sense, you should know that 3 dB increases in sensitivity halves the power needed to reach a given volume. Keep in mind that the human ear can only support up to 100 dB.

The human ear can only withstand up to 100 decibels.

Impedance

Impedance, measured in ohms (Ω), indicates the resistance of the headphones to the passage of electric current. The lower the impedance, the louder the headphones can sound for the same power. In general, headphones with between 16 and 80 ohms of impedance ensure good performance.

Equalization

The comfort of the headphones will depend on their design.

In addition to sound quality, all headphones are characterized by a particular sound profile. This depends on their pre-set equalization, or in other words, the reinforcement or reduction of certain frequencies (low, medium or high). For example, Beats headphones stand out for boosting bass.

The most common equalizers are balanced or flat, V equalization and basshead. In this sense, the one that respects the original sound the most is the flat or balanced. V equalizer powers bass or treble and is the most recommended for listening to rock, hip-hop or electronics. Basshead specifically focuses on reinforcing the bass.

Comfort

If the headphones you buy aren’t comfortable, it won’t be two weeks before you stop using them. In general, comfort will depend mainly on the design, materials, softness and padding of the earpads and, importantly, the pressure they put on the head.

Additionally, in the specific case of over-ear headphones, a larger cup will generally result in greater comfort. Another thing to consider is whether or not they are connected by a cable. If they have a cable, it has an anti-tangle system, or does it have practical clips to attach it to clothing.

Connectivity

Some headphones incorporate a noise cancellation system.

In this day and age there is a wide variety of options when it comes to connecting headphones to music players and devices. From the traditional 3.5 mm jack socket of a lifetime to Bluetooth or WiFi connections, not forgetting USB port connections. In each case, you want to know which connection standard they support.

When it comes to Bluetooth connections, the most recent version is 5.1, while for USB ports, the newest standard, as well as the fastest, is USB 3.0 type-C. However the fact is, the wired connection usually offers a higher level of quality than wireless connections.

Battery

Battery life is something you are only going to be concerned with if you are interested in wireless headphones. When it comes to this type of headphone, battery life is one of the most salient features to consider when deciding on a purchase. Nothing makes listening to music more frustrating than all of a sudden running out of battery.
Fortunately, to prevent this, many manufacturers also offer the ability to connect headphones via a cable. In any case, it is possible to find devices that offer up to 30 hours of battery life. However, keep in mind, that a longer battery life is going to mean an increase in weight and price.

Related links and sources

https://www.soundguys.com/headphones-buying-guide-8290/
https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/05/how-headphones-changed-the-world/257830/
https://www.electronics-notes.com/articles/audio-video/earphones-headphones-headsets/basics-tutorial.php

FAQ

What do you need headphones for?

You might need headphones for a wide range of reasons. You might want them for listening to music as you walk to work or class, or while you ride public transport. Maybe you want a pair specifically for gaming, or to listen to music and watch movies while you travel. Another perfect use for headphones is for practicing sports, especially running. That’s why you’d be interested in headphones that are resistant to water and sweat. In addition, there are also waterproof models available that can be used for swimming. There are even models designed to be worn as fashion accessories.

What type of over-ear headphones are there?

As mentioned above, over-ear headphones can be divided into supra-aural and circumaural. The former are quite light and easy to carry meanwhile circumaurals are much larger in size, as their earpads completely surround the ear. In this way, circumaurals offer a much more immersive sound experience.

Open or closed over-ear headphones?

The cups of over-ear headphones can either be opened or closed. Open style are those that do not completely isolate the noise from the outside, allowing a part of the emitted sound to come out. The latter, closed style, are designed to isolate noise, both inwards and outwards.

Wired or wireless headphones?

You’re probably wondering which option is best for you, wired or wireless headphones. Wired, in general, will allow you to enjoy better sound quality. However in recent years, Bluetooth connections have improved enormously, thanks mainly to the aptX HD codecs. Wireless headphones are much more comfortable, allowing you more freedom of movement. This makes them ideal for sports and for use with your mobile phone. Their connection range is usually around 10 meters. Keep in mind, however, that battery life can be a limiting factor.

What is active headphone noise cancellation?

Some headphones incorporate active noise cancellation. This is a technology that was originally created to reduce the noise pollution to workers in the air force. Noise cancellation allows you to isolate yourself from the environment and only hear the sound coming from the headphones. It is an ideal system for long journeys by train or airplane and to isolate you from noisy environments. However, it is not recommended to use it while walking down the street or riding a bicycle, as it can be dangerous. For this reason, some headphones allow you to turn active noise cancellation on and off.

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