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Headphones

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Headphones information

Picking out the perfect pair of headphones is a very personal matter, whether you're a DJ, musician, an audiophile looking for the highest possible audio quality or a music lover with more moderate demands. On the other end of the spectrum, you'll find studio and session musicians who need an 'honest', natural-sounding pair of studio headphones - just like mixing and mastering engineers do. Our specialists know everything there is to know about headphones and are happy to provide honest, tailored advice to help you find the best model for you.

Headphones for Music

For casual music listening from the comfort of your sofa and music playback via a smart device while you're on the train, you don't necessarily need a pair of DJ or studio headphones. We recommend going for headphones that sound good and are easy to hook up. You'll also want the sound to have a little 'colour' and maybe even pack extra-powerful bass - but that's personal. Our entire range of headphones come with a product description to fill you in on the important information, including whether the model is designed for the studio, for Djs, or for casual listening. There's a separate section where you'll find In-Ear Headphones for multimedia use, e.g. listening to music via a smartphone. As tiny as they are, even these little earbuds can boast excellent audio quality.

Wireless Bluetooth Headphones

Bluetooth technology has been steadily evolving throughout the years and, these days, the convenience of Bluetooth functionality no longer comes at the cost of audio quality. Larger audio files can be effortlessly streamed to Wireless Headphones and Wireless In-Ear Headphones, which can be paired to Bluetooth devices like smartphones, tablets and laptops.

Tip: There are various wireless dongles available that add Bluetooth functionality to compatible playback devices that haven't been equipped with the function as standard.

Noise-Cancelling Headphones

One type of headphones that are only getting more popular are what are called noise-cancelling headphones: models fitted with ear-cups that completely cover the ears and isolate the ears while actively supressing ambient noise. That said, noise-suppression technology practically always requires power supplied by either batteries or a built-in rechargeable battery. In most cases, you can go a full day before running out of juice to power the noise-suppression function, which can also be turned off as needed to preserve battery life. Also, noise-cancellation doesn't mean any and all ambient sound is shut out, but you will notice that the noise level drops significantly, especially when it comes to more constant sounds like cars and planes. While they're great for getting some peace and quiet in a noisy environment even when you’re not listening to music, it’s never a good idea to use them when you need to be aware of your surroundings such as in traffic. Browse our entire range of Noise-Cancelling Headphones.

Studio Headphones

Studio Headphones are mainly used in the world of production where they're often combined with studio monitors. These headphones offer an accurate, honest representation of the audio source, in other words: extremely neutral sound. In the studio, there's a clear distinction between mixing headphones and monitoring headphones that are used for recording. To learn the difference, take at look at how each model is constructed and remember that there are three possible options: closed, semi-open and open. Closed headphones can be seen as the standard headphones and are ideal for recording since the design stops sound from 'leaking out' and getting picked up by a microphone. Open headphones literally have open ear-cups with lots of tiny holes in them. These kind of headphones are great for mixing tracks because they offer even more natural, spatially-enhanced audio.

DJ Headphones

Featuring excellent isolation, solid basses and high volume, DJ Headphones are essential bits of kit for any DJ. These headphones usually come outfitted with rotatable ear-cups, allowing you to use only one of the sides to listen to the next track in line and ensure a smooth transition in advance. If you've seen a DJ perform before, you'll know exactly what we mean.

Stage Headphones

In-Ear Monitors can be used to keep tabs on the live mix when you're up on stage. Indispensable during any intense gig, these in-ear monitoring systems offer a high-quality fit and audio quality to match.

Frequently Asked Questions About Headphones

What does the impedance (Ohms) say about a pair of headphones?

The ohmage, or impedance of any headphones differs per model (e.g. 80 Ohms or 250 Ohms) and indicates how easy it is for playback devices to send sound through them. If you're thinking about using a smartphone, laptop or any other portable device, it's best to pick a pair of low-impedance headphones, so models with a maximum impedance of 50 Ohms. On the other hand, if you're running a Hi-Fi set-up or high-end studio gear and want to make the most of your interface as well as your headphones, you're probably better off with headphones that have an impedance of 250 Ohms. Check out our dedicated blog about Headphone Impedance to learn more.

Which headphones are safe for my kids?

The ideal headphones for kids are generally a little smaller than standard. These models are comfortable, well-constructed and feature a limited volume output to ensure safe sound pressure levels. A maximum sound pressure level of 85dB is perfect for young music-lovers

Do I need a headphone amplifier?

There are several viable reasons for getting a headphone amplifier. Imagine a situation where you only have a single headphone output available while you need to hook up two or more pairs of headphones. That's where many headphone amps - even cheap ones - would save the day by setting you up with multiple headphone outputs.

The standard headphone amplifier built into your average laptop or audio interface usually isn't powerful enough to reproduce sound in full through a pair of high-impedance studio headphones. The bass frequencies will sound distorted and the volume will be extremely low, which is where the external headphone amplifier can help. Headphone amps offer ample power to get optimum sound out of high-impedance headphones. One good reason for getting a pair of these kind of headphones is the fact that they have less harmonic distortion (THD) than other headphones.

A DAC, or digital-to-analogue converter can also help to boost the overall audio quality of your playback device (but not the volume per se).

What are the best headphones for me?

No matter what you'll be using them for, there are various options available to guarantee the preferred fit. Headphones and in-ears can be roughly divided into three different fits: over-ear (with cups big enough to entirely cover the ears); on-ear (with ear-cups that are slightly smaller and softly rest on the ears); and in-ear, which speaks for itself. Since all ears are different, it's up to you decide which 'fit' is the most comfortable for you.

How much does a decent pair of headphones cost?

'Decent' is rather subjective but if we take a look at the most popular models, including the Beyerdynamic DT-770, a solid pair of all-round headphones will set you back about a hundred pounds. That said, we're talking about headphones made for critical listening here - a much cheaper model may also meet your needs, so don't forget to read the reviews!

Can I connect wireless headphones to my TV?

Some televisions feature built-in Bluetooth functionality and can be paired with any Bluetooth headphones. If your TV doesn't support Bluetooth, go for headphones that come complete with a separate wireless transmitter that connects to your TV or receiver via an RCA cable or Toslink cable . Charge your headphones, link them to the transmitter, and sit back to enjoy the show!

What accessories can I get with my headphones?

Keep your headphones in perfect condition with headphone bags, holdersand replacement parts, or browse our assortment of adapter plugs if you're looking to connect your headphones to a specific bit of kit.

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