Buying the right headphones can be a daunting task. It can be difficult for a beginner or an inexperienced person to understand the huge variety of different headphones. In this article, we’ll go over all the details you need and help you choose the right pair of headphones for you. We will discuss all the nuances to consider when buying the perfect headphones.
Types and types of headphones
In-ear wired headphones
In-ear headphones are the most commonly available today. Many smartphone manufacturers offer a pair of these headphones as a free accessory with your phone.
These in-ear headphones are the smallest of all types of headphones. The portability of these headphones makes them popular with many users.
Wireless in-ear headphones
We have seen that cable tangle is a significant disadvantage of conventional in-ear headphones. Wireless in-ear headphones eliminate this problem and increase your comfort.
Like in-ear headphones, wireless headphones fit snugly into your ear. They come with tiny batteries to power these devices. Usually, the headphone case acts as a charger for these headphones, and Steelseries Arctis 7 reviewed.
In-ear headphones cause discomfort in your ears because they are located inside the ear canal. a poor quality pair can cause severe ear pain. The ideal solution is to use on-ear headphones.
These devices are located at the top of the ears, not inside the ear canal. The two earpieces are connected by a plastic or metal arch that fits over the head. Since the speakers are located in the ear, these headphones provide excellent sound quality.
Over-ear headphones are similar to on-ear headphones but are comparatively larger. These devices are available both wired and wireless. They have more durable padding compared to on-ear headphones. The latest available on the market have sealed ear cushions to block out ambient noise.
These headphones can block the phone ringer or doorbell. Some headphones have holes in the ear cushions.
Bluetooth wireless headphones
Bluetooth headphones have become popular today because they eliminate the need for wires.
Apple devices have removed the headphone jack in their latest gadgets to capitalize on the popularity of Bluetooth headphones. Recently, some Android smartphones have followed suit.
Headphone technical parameters
We have discussed different types of headphones depending on their design. You can also categorize them based on usage. Below we will look at the different parameters of the headphones that affect their use.
As this term implies, noise isolation means blocking the penetration of external sound into the ear. Headphones are physically positioned between your ear and external sounds, preventing them from entering your ears.
In-ear headphones have a higher degree of noise isolation due to their positional advantage. On-ear headphones are not snug against your ear. Hence, they are not as good as earmolds in terms of noise isolation.
Active noise cancellation
Many people confuse noise isolation and active noise canceling because the goal is the same – to prevent outside noise from getting into your ears. However, active noise canceling (ANC) works differently.
ANC headphones come with tiny microphones that pick up external sounds. These microphones produce opposite sounds to cancel out unwanted external noise. This is a complicated process and therefore ANC headphones will be more expensive.
This specification specifies the range of sound that headphones can reproduce. Looking at the product specifications, you will see a number that ranges from 20Hz to 20,000Hz.
Some manufacturers advertise a wider frequency range from 15 Hz to 25,000 Hz. in fact, humans cannot hear frequencies below 20 Hz and above 20,000 Hz. However, headphones with this configuration can improve the audibility of sounds.
Typically, the average consumer may not immediately notice the difference. This is a marketing trick used by many manufacturers.
Total harmonic distortion
Headphones with a lower THD sound better than headphones with a higher THD.
Manufacturers advertise THD less than 1%. However, this metric does not help predict sound quality. High-quality on-ear headphones can help make the sound clearer than others.
The soundstage is a condition in which headphones mimic the human ability to determine the direction of where the sound is coming from. For example, if someone whispers to you near your left ear, your head will automatically rotate and look over your left shoulder.
Quality headphones have the ability to reproduce spatial signals in a room. They can trick your brain into thinking that the sound is coming from a certain direction.
Open versus closed speakers
Typically, on-ear headphones are available in two styles: open-back and closed-back.
For closed-back headphones, the speakers are located in the earcup, with the exception of the area facing the ear. This ensures that the sound does not reflect, but penetrates deep into the ear canal. These headphones are great if you don’t need external interference.
In this case, the person sitting next to you does not hear the sound. In other words, they prevent sound leakage. These are the best headphones if you use them in public places like the office.
The open-back headphone speakers are open, so outside noise can easily enter the earcup. These headphones are not ideal for use in noisy environments.
However, they are very useful when you use these headphones at home or in the studio.
The lower impedance makes it easier to get more loudness. The electrical impedance of a headphone is also known as impedance.
A lower impedance level does not necessarily guarantee a higher volume level, but consumers should always check the volume ratio before purchasing a pair of headphones.
Headphone impedance is measured in ohms. Studio headphones have a high impedance of almost 600 ohms because they require a high level to provide the desired listening level.
Typically consumer grade headphones have impedance levels ranging from 16 to 64 ohms.
Stereo versus mono
Stereo headphones have two separate channels, right and left. Thus, you hear different sounds in both ears.
Stereo headphones are great for listening to music and watching movies because you can appreciate sounds coming from different angles.
You can tell if the headphones are monaural or stereo by counting the number of rings on the headphone plug. Monaural headphones will have one circle, while stereo headphones will have at least two.
How to choose the right quality headphones?
We discussed technical issues. Next, we continue our discussion of the most important features to look for in a good headphone.
Headphones cannot sound any, but a good device can suppress noise and provide a better acoustic experience. Some of the best on-ear headphones come with this feature.
Bluetooth headphones are in vogue today. These headphones operate on batteries. It is advisable to choose headphones with good battery life. Secondly, do not forget to charge the batteries in time so that they do not run out at the most inopportune moment.
Built-in microphone control
It can be annoying to receive phone calls while you’re busy listening to your favorite music on your headphones. However, emergencies can arise at any time. The best headphones have a built-in microphone control option, with which you can take calls without taking your phone out of your pocket.
These built-in microphone controls can also help you access your voice assistant and control music played through your headphones. It’s best to get used to these controls for a better acoustic experience.
Some over-ear and on-ear headphones are too large to carry around. But today, manufacturers offer the latest models of headphones with foldable cups that allow them to be folded and easily stowed away in a bag or backpack.