Whether you’re looking for the best headphones to wear while listening to music, the best headphones for monitoring, or just something to keep the sound in your ears and not in those of the people surrounding you, finding suitable headphones is important. At least for someone like myself who considers listening to music one of their favorite activities, having the proper headphones is paramount to enjoying it!
I myself have gone through literally thousands of dollars throughout my life trying out different styles, models, and brands of headphones, and as such have found plenty of great headphones and plenty of duds. After trying out so many different kinds, I’ve managed to gain somewhat of an affinity for what the best headphone brands are – which brands make the best headphones around. While some companies might hit a home run occasionally with a pair of great headphones that have everything in place, there are only some that consistently manufacture top of the line audio equipment.
Audio Technica has been a huge name in the audio equipment business for quite a while now – founded and established in 1962, the Audio-Technica corporation has been making audio equipment for 50 years now! Designing and manufacturing everything from phonographic magnetic cartridges, wired and wireless microphones, and of course headphones (among other types of audio equipment), they have plenty of experience. A trusted name in the audio business, they’ve been providing the microphones for the grammy’s for the past 10 years.
As far as headphones are concerned however, Audio Technica might not have the longest list of products to show off, but each of them are considered extremely high quality, especially the Audio Technica ATH-M50, which we did a full review of. They were also included in our list of the best DJ headphones!
Audio Technica’s full list of headphone products are as follows:
Audio-Technica ATH-WS55 – over the ear consumer Solid Bass headphones
Audio-Technica ATH-M50 – over the ear professional studio recording headphones
Audio-Technica ATH-AD500 – over the ear
Audio-Technica ATH-AD700 – over the ear professional studio recording headphones
Audio-Technica ATH-CKS55 – consumer Solid Bass in ear buds
Ranging anywhere from under $100 to almost $200, you have a few different options (including earbuds rather than full sized over ear headphones) depending on your preferences and budget if you’re considering Audio Technica headphones. Many DJ’s use them in live performances as well as for studio monitoring or just simply listening to music at your leisure. All of their products are build with excellent quality and can take quite a bit of a beating before taking on any damage.
Sennheiser was first formed in 1945 in Germany just a few weeks following the end of WW2. To this day it is a family owned company with just over 2,000 employees, over half of them working at its headquarters in Germany.
Senneheiser is world renowned to this day for their audio equipment. Besides designing and manufacturing some of the best headphones in the world, they also make microphones, telephony accessories, avionic headsets for personal and business applications, etc.
They made their first headphones and released them to the public in 1968, which solidified them as pioneers in the industry. Their designs revolutionized and lead the way for the types of headphones we know and love these days by vastly improving upon the designs of the time in terms of sound quality and portability.
These days, Sennheiser headphones remain one of the best headphone brands in the world. Offering a huge variety of headphones and earbuds in just about any style you can imagine, with prices that range from under $50 all the way up to $1500 for their top of the line models. Audio professionals of all kinds, including mixing and mastering professionals, DJ’s, and professional pilots all utilize Sennheiser headphones or audio equipment in some way or the other, and as such they’re one of the few brands that truly deliver the best headphones in the world at a reasonable and flexible price range.
Denon is probably one of the oldest audio equipment companies around that you’ll find. Originally founded in 1910 (and subsequently seeing a number of slight name changes and owners ever since), they now manufacture a large amount of audio devices and products, including tuners, wireless music systems, Blu-ray players, AV receivers, and of course headphones!
Denon, much like Sennheiser, also offers a very wide range of headphones. Available in open or over the ear designs, wired and wireless, earbuds, etc. prices range widely from around $50 to well over $1000 for the best headphones they have available.
Denon attempts to stay ahead of the game in terms of innovation as well, this year alone announcing over 11 new headphone designs and lines of headphones. Several will include the ability to access wireless applications which will allow sifting through music without any other equipment than the headphones themselves! Also on the horizon are headphones specifically designed for exercising which are sweat/water proof.
“Grado Labs“, the company through which all Grado headphones and products are designed and manufactured through, was founded by Joseph Grado in Brooklyn, New York.
Grado headphones are considered some of the best in the world, and are held in high regard among audio enthusiasts worldwide. Unlike some of the other headphone brands included on this list who produce audio equipment which includes headphones, Grado is dedicated almost exclusively to headphones. Keeping much more of a low profile than most other headphone brands, they proudly rely almost exclusively on word of mouth advertising.
Quality over quantity is what Grado headphones are all about, and they’d rather sell less in order to keep top notch quality a priority. Unlike just about any brand of headphones that I’ve encountered, all Grado headphones are hand crafted to ensure each and every pair is of the highest quality. Each and every pair of Grado headphones are made with their “vented diaphragm” technology, which incorporates a large air chamber which surrounds your ear. This lowers any distortion or frequency resonance and extends bass response considerably, making Grado products some of the best headphones for bass music.
Much like many of the other headphone brands, they offer a variety of different headphones at different price points in order to accommodate any and all consumers. . There are currently five “families” or lines of Grado headphones being produced including the prestige, reference, statement, and professional series.
Founded in Austria in 1947, this now American owned company has been designing and manufacturing audio equipment of all types for over 50 years. Microphones, wireless audio systems, and headphones are just a few of the products that AKG is involved with.
They first got started out making headphones in 1959, when they designed the “K50” model, which was the worlds first open back headphones. The current flagship models for the AKG headphone line up are the K701, K702, and Q701. Each are nearly identical, save for a few minor differences. The K702 features a removable cord and is black, the K701 is white. The Q701 also has a detachable cable and comes in three color variants: white, black, and a flashy green. All three models are still in production. The K701s have been largely used by professional musicians and technicians in recording studios.
Besides their flagship models, AKG has a wide range of headphones that cover just about anyone’s price range. Starting at under $100 for their basic headphone models, their prices also range all the way up to $1500 for their best headphones available! All are considered by audio professionals and DJ’s to be some of the highest quality that you can get.
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