Buying Guide for Headphones

The first thing you should consider when purchasing new headphones is "where and how" you intend to use them. It's meaningless to buy a full-size set of Hi-Fi headphones if you're only going to listen to music while jogging; conversely, buying a pair of sports earbuds to use on planes is futile because they don't isolate much background noise. Try to test the headphones you desire in person if you can, and if possible, test them with the music device you plan to use them with and listen to songs you're already familiar with so you can spot any differences between them.

Headphones for DJs

A swivel/rotating ear cup is standard on most DJ headphones, and it's a useful feature for comparing the beats of a new track you're going to mix with the music coming out of the PA system at the same time. A good set of DJ headphones with great drivers will deliver a wider frequency response, which is important when purchasing a pair of DJ headphones. A lot of electronic and dance music uses low frequency sounds, so a good set of DJ headphones with great drivers will deliver a wider frequency response.

Headphones for On-Ear Use

The most common type of headset is on-ear headphones. Some feature ear cups that practically sit on your ear, while others have a larger cup like 'full size' headphones. They are also known as 'super-aural headphones' or 'earpad headphones.' The benefits of using an on-ear headphone include that they are more comfortable, your ears are less likely to warm than when using a full-size set, and some versions can fold up for simple transportation.

Headphones for in-ear use

In-ear headphones, also known as in ear monitors, IEM, earphones, or ear canal headphones, are small earbuds that fit into and seal the ear canal. In-ear headphones, like earplugs, are excellent at blocking out extraneous sounds. Because the sound from a pair of in-ear headphones is funnelled directly into your ears, it can bring out small details that would otherwise be lost over stereo speakers, listening to music with in-ear headphones is a completely different experience than listening to music over a set of Hi Fi speakers.


When you accept an incoming call on your phones headset headphones, you can listen to music while talking. Beats and JBL have a variety of headphones and in-ear headphones that include an in-line microphone as well as a control pad for controlling the music.

Headphones for Sports

Sports headphones are typically divided into two types: those with a vertical or horizontal headband, and those with an ear clip attachment that eliminates the headband entirely. All sports headphones feature a 'open-backed' design that allows background and ambient noise to pass through, which is vital if you plan to exercise outside and need to be aware of your surroundings.