There are a lot of headphones out there in the market from a lot of good brands like Philips, Sony, Audio Technica, baeyerdynamic, Edifier, JBL, Sennheiser, Bose V, Moda, and more. Some people do not care what brand is purchased as long as the headphone does what they need it to do but if you are a cautious buyer below are a list of you might want to look into while buying a new pair headphones:
1. Over the Ear or On the Ear
Over the ear or on the ear headphones have a bigger cup that covers your ears completely and is very good for noise cancellation and it’s the same one I’m currently using right now while I’m listening to some music and it’s awesome (epic music in case you’re wondering what kind of music). On the ear headphones as the name suggests; is on the ear but does not cover the entire ear because there is no earcup.
If you do not want to use a separate mic or if you do not want to use the mic on your device, try and check out headphones with the mic. I would recommend you look at headphones with the retractable mic or at-least a mic that does not permanently stick out of your headphones because at some point you will end up breaking it even if you’re careful and I’ll be the first to admit – I broke one myself sometime back and I had to buy a new one. I’ve seen some headphones that have a detachable mic too which might be worth a look but we’ll need to be careful not to misplace the mic if we go in for that option.
3. Noise cancellation
When you are checking out the description for your headphones; try and see if you can spot anything about noise cancellation, if you have noise cancellation as one of the features of your phones, you need not worry too much about installing applications on your computer or other devices to cancel out the unwanted sounds. For example, when you are on a call on skype early in the morning and those annoying birds who have nothing better to do with their lives other than chirping; noise cancellation might help in getting rid of the birdy noises outside and to focus only on your voice.
4. Driver unit
It is that little thingy inside your headphone that converts electrical signals into sound and is mainly made up of a magnet, voice coils and a diaphragm. A driver unit’s diameter is measured in mm(millimetres) which is used to find out its capabilities in producing sounds but usually you will notice that size of the driver unit is more if the headphones are bigger. I know this is boring stuff like everything else here but it might help in picking out a great sound pair of headphones.
5. Volume Control
Try and see if you can find a headphone with the option to control the volume and this is important because sometimes you will find that there are audio files or music playing online so low that you can hardly make out words and I know some of you may have come across this problem once or twice. When you have already maxed out the device volume and you can’t go any higher, the additional volume increase option can be very useful in these situations but be sure to reduce the volume when you are done or you will blow up your ear drums.
6. Frequency Range
Now I’m assuming you do not have super hearing; so the frequency range between 20 to 20,000 Hz wherein 20 Hz is the bass frequency and 20,000 Hz is the treble frequency. You do not need anything beyond 35,000 Hz. Now if you have super hearing or if you are buying headphones for your dog try and limit the frequency range to 65,000 Hz for your dog’s ears and also be sure to let me know who manufactures those kind of headphones.
7. Wireless or Wired
A wireless headset let you use the headphone without the need to have a wire running all the way from your device to your headphones but a wired one does. I know wireless looks like a good option and yes it is good because you have the freedom to move around and do other stuff but think about the high price of the headphone and the number of batteries you’re going to have to keep buying just to replace the drained out batteries and even if those are rechargeable batteries, what if you are in the middle of a call or on an in-game voice chat doing voice chat stuff and the battery suddenly runs out, you will have a lot of problems trying to get those headphones back online. If you can find a pair of headphones that support both wireless and wired usage then you’re golden if not wired headphones are the best option.
8. Open or closed back headphones
Open back headphones are those that have open cups which let you take in the noise of the environment with the sounds coming from the headphones; remember the chirping birds from earlier? Yeah, you’re going to be listening to the birds talk instead of the other person on the other end of the call. A closed back headphone gives you better noise isolation and you will hardly hear the sounds in the environment.
Apart from what was already mentioned above you will need to worry about the price and the number of kidneys you will have to sell to buy one if you’re looking for the fancy ones but for the most part headphones are not that expensive and you’ll find a wide range of options to choose from. You may also want to decide on whether you want a headphone that connects via USB or pin, I feel like pins are better because you can use them on many devices and I’m not sure if anyone else has come across the issue with a USB connector headphones giving out static noise; there was also an instance wherein I set the volume to 2% while I was watching a movie and then all of a sudden when I knocked the USB connector a little, the volume jumped up to 100% and destroyed my ear drums – I think it was a Sennheiser headset that did that. The advantage of the USB connector is that you need not worry about the problem of having two pins – one for mic and one for headphones but then again that is not that big of a problem to worry about. If you want me to recommend something then I say go in for the Audio-Technica ATH-M50x if you fancy wired headphones, for wireless right now QuietComfort 35 is doing really well.