Top 8 Best Budget Open Back Headphones

8 Of The Best Budget Open Headphones

If you want to experience the spacious and highly-detailed sound quality that open cans are known for, you came to the right place! Maybe you’ve been let down in the past by over-priced headphones that didn’t quite deliver the same level of quality that was promised.

If you’ve never experienced this style and want to see a few options before you settle on a specific pair – we think you’ll enjoy browsing our selection and short buying guide! We did our best to highlight the most important performance features for each pair. You’ll also be able to read a full review for each of the models listed here (using the links provided). 

If you’re anything like us, you probably agree with the importance of having all the facts before you draw any conclusions! We hope you enjoy browsing our Top 8 recommendations for the Best Budget Open Headphones!

Top 8 Best Budget Open Headphones (Under $300)

How Did We Choose? - Best Budget Open Headphones

How Did We Select Our Favorite Picks?

Before we get into the actual list, you probably want to know how we selected which models would make the cut. When it comes to this style of headphones, there are a few features that are absolutely essential. Some of the cans here check off almost every performance criteria with flying colors. 

Others on the list don’t quite excel at each and every performance aspect, but do come pretty close. Listed below are the 4 most important features to consider before making your decision. 

  • Build Quality
  • Comfort
  • Sonic Performance
  • Versatility

The 4 criteria listed above might seem like obvious performance features to consider, but here’s a brief guide on why each of them are so important for choosing the right pair of open cans! 

Build Quality – Flimsy or Lightweight?

None of us like opening up a new pair of ‘phones and realizing that they were cheaply built. This is especially true if you spent a good amount of your hard-earned cash on some cans that don’t deliver what they promise. 

Since these are open cans, most of them perform at their best for at-home or studio use. Most of them weren’t designed to be taken with you on-the-go (although how you use them is totally up to you). 

Each of the models we selected either have a very durable build that’s designed to last, or make up for a less well-built design in other areas (such as comfort). 

Comfort – Long-Lasting or Short-Lived?

Since most of the cans here are ideal for longer listening sessions, comfort is another essential performance aspect to consider. While some of the ‘phones here are more comfy than others, they will all meet your most basic needs in this area. 

The experience we’ve all likely had (mentioned above) when you realize that the cans you just got in the mail aren’t very well-built can be extremely disappointing. It’s never fun when your ears (or the top of your head) start to ache after only an hour or less of listening. 

This is exactly why we specifically chose ‘phones that have at least average comfort, but in most cases provide above-average cushion and even weight distribution. What good would your cans be if they are both well-built and super comfy but don’t sound as crisp as you’d like them to?

Sonic Performance – How Do They Sound?

This brings us to the arguably most important performance feature for many listeners. Sonic performance. Each of the models listed below have specific sonic characteristics that clearly set them apart from one another. 

Some of them have the extremely flat and neutral response that’s loved by many audiophiles and/or audio professionals. Others seem to place a distinct emphasis on bringing lows, mids, or highs to the forefront. Their driver type also factors into the equation, since each specific style produces a different kind of playback. 

No matter what your personal listening preference happens to be – the cans we selected offer a wide variety of sound signatures to choose from. Keeping that in mind, each of them also perform at their best for different types of listening and in specific environments. 

Versatility – Where Do They Perform At Their Best?

When we say ‘versatility’, we’re referring to a headphone’s ability to handle a wide variety of genres. On top of that, we think it’s important to highlight where they perform at their best. 

It’s also important to consider what type of listener you are (or plan to be). For example, if you’re someone who enjoys kicking back at the end of your day and enjoying some of your favorite albums in a solitary environment – you’ll probably be more satisfied with one of the neutral cans. 

If you’re someone who mixes and masters tracks in the studio – you’ll most likely enjoy a pair that has extremely long-lasting comfort and a specific sound profile tailored to your genre of choice

Lastly, if you consider yourself a casual listener who just wants to experience a quality entry-level option, you might enjoy a more exciting sound profile. Above all else, we all enjoy using ‘phones that are well-built, comfy to wear, and sound amazing. Without rambling on too much, there are plenty of options here that each and every type of listener can appreciate!

Top 8 Recommendations – From Our Most to Least Favorite

Now that you know how we selected each ‘phone, you can refer to the list below to see which ones made the cut! They are listed in order of our most to least favorite overall picks

Feel free to use each of the links below to jump around and check out the cans that seem the most appealing. If you’re someone who likes to start what they finish – browse the entire list from top to bottom!

Here are the Top 8 picks listed in order from our most to least favorite picks:

TOP 8 RECOMMENDATIONS
Driver Type Recommendations
Neodymium Dynamic Sennheiser HD600
Dynamic Philips Fidelio X2/27
Planar Magnetic Monoprice Monolith M1060
Dynamic AKG K702
Planar Magnetic HIFIMAN HE-400i
Unspecified Sennheiser HD 598 SR
Dynamic Grado SR325e
Dynamic Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro

If you’re ready to get started, take a look at the Sennheiser HD600!


1. Sennheiser HD600 

Technical Specs:

  • Circumaural (over-ear) ear cup design
  • Driver Type: Neodymium Dynamic 
  • Frequency Response: 12 Hz – 39 kHz
  • Impedance: 300 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 97 dB/mW
  • Dimensions: Unspecified by manufacturer
  • Weight: 9.12 ounces

Why Are The HD 600 The #1 Overall Pick?

We selected the Sennheiser HD600 as the #1 best overall pair of cans for a few different reasons. One, they’ve been around for over 20 years and are still one of the most popular choices among audiophiles. Two, based on our selection criteria, they offer the most cohesive and practical combination of performance features. 

Build Quality – Flimsy or Lightweight?

As you can see in the picture above, these cans have a glossy black/blue plastic finish that looks similar to high quality granite. (Keep in mind that they are only currently available in this color scheme.) So, they look good, but are they well-built?

One of the main differences that sets these cans apart from the rest is their headband design. Instead of a singular strip of headband padding, there are 4 individual pads along the bottom of the headband. What this does is provide an even amount of weight distribution and cushion to the contour of your head. 

Comfort – Long-Lasting or Short-Lived?

Both ear cups also feature velour-covered foam pads that are fully-replaceable if you’re not happy with them for any reason. Although the HD600 can be customized, most listeners find that they’re very comfortable right out of the box. 

Sonic Performance – How Do They Sound?

Another reason we selected these as our #1 pick is because their sound profile is purely analytical and true-to-the-track. No matter what genre or style of music you prefer – their extremely flat, detailed, and accurate response is one thing you can always count on. 

Another important quality to consider is their soundstage. The HD600 have a soundstage that is significantly more narrow than most of the other cans listed here. Now, this could be a slight downside for some since a wide and spacious soundstage is one of the main reasons to use open cans. 

Despite being more narrow than most, you still experience laser-focused detail imaging. It’s also important to note that your music won’t sound like it’s playing around you as much as it will when you’re listening with the Fidelio X2. If you only prefer an extremely bright treble, or extended low end response, these probably won’t work for you. 

Unboxing & First Impressions

Take a look at the quick video below to see an unboxing and a few first impressions!

Versatility – Where Do They Perform At Their Best?

The HD600 excel at providing the most neutral and flat response possible. Their signature sonic performance is perfect for critical listening and/or mixing and mastering in the studio. They would be perfect for you if you can appreciate never-ending comfort and a timeless build that has yet to go out of style. 

Once again, if you expect them to produce a skull-shattering bass response or sharp high end – you’ll be very disappointed. It’s hard to highlight any major flaws since there really aren’t too many to nitpick (that is, aside from their slightly narrow soundstage). 

After you read our full review using the button below, you’ll see exactly why they received an almost perfect 10 out of 10 rating! They are an audiophile’s dream and the bass-head’s nightmare. 

If you’d like to see more in-depth information, use the button below to read our full review!

If you’d like to see the more customer reviews and/or the most up-to-date pricing info, click the button below


2. Philips Fidelio X2/27

Technical Specs:

  • Circumaural (over-ear) ear cup design
  • Driver Type: 50 mm Neodymium Dynamic
  • Frequency Response: 5 Hz – 40 kHz
  • Impedance: 30 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 100 dB/1 mW
  • Dimensions: 4.33 x 7.48 x 9.05 inches
  • Weight: 13.44 ounces

Build Quality – Flimsy or Lightweight?

The Philips Fidelio X2/27 are by far one of the most surprising cans to make the cut (especially being the #2 pick). They are easily one of the most well-rounded cans to be featured here. 

Both ear cups are constructed with metal and the memory foam ear pads provide adequate room for most people’s ears. As you can see in the image above, they also have a 3D mesh hammock headband design that may seem slightly odd-looking. Does it do a good job at evenly-distributing most of the wearing weight? 

Comfort – Long-Lasting or Short-Lived?

We’ve mentioned (a few times) that the X2 might be the most comfortable cans on this list. Most of this is due to the 3D mesh hammock design. Since it’s slightly wider (and more evenly-shaped) than the suspended headband strap on the HE 400i – the weight of the sturdy build doesn’t clamp down with too much pressure. 

The mesh hammock plus the ultra-plush memory foam ear padding makes for a much more comfy wearing experience. These cans are not only super comfy, but also feature a pretty unique sonic performance. 

Sonic Performance – How Do They Sound?

The X2 are extremely fun and exciting to listen to. Why? Well, their extremely spacious and extended bass response has so much depth for a pair of open cans that it might leave you scratching your head. The depth in the low end is almost perfectly-matched by a buttery smooth mid and upper range response. 

Unlike some of the other cans we’ve covered here, the X2/27 produce a slightly highlighted low end response that manages to satisfy both bass-heads AND audiophiles. (We’re still not quite sure how they managed to pull of a feat like that.) 

Unboxing & First Impressions

Take a look at the quick video below to see an unboxing and a few first impressions!

Versatility – Where Do They Perform At Their Best?

These cans are an undeniable stand-out in terms of not only build quality and comfort – but also feature a sonic performance that’s unprecedented at this price point (and even above in many cases). 

Since they have so many great performance features to offer, we gave them an almost perfect 10 out of 10 rating in our full review. While this doesn’t happen very often, you’ll understand once you put them on and start listening. 

Their fairly neutral sound profile (with a highly-accurate and extended bass response) makes them a very solid competitor. They would be a great pair of entry-level or mid-range (and affordable) open back cans whether you’re an audiophile or casual listener.

If you’d like to see more in-depth information, use the button below to read our full review!

If you’d like to see the more customer reviews and/or the most up-to-date pricing info, click the button below


3. Monoprice Monolith M1060

Technical Specs:

  • Circumaural (over-ear) ear cup design
  • Driver Type: Planar Magnetic
  • Frequency Response: 10 Hz – 50 kHz
  • Impedance: 50 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 96 dB/1 mW
  • Dimensions: 11.8 x 12.2 x 4.9 inches
  • Weight: 1.1 pounds

Build Quality – Flimsy or Lightweight?

One of the first things you’ll notice about the Monoprice Monolith M1060 (when you pull them out of the box) is a build quality that might make you question your decision. Why are they ranked so highly if they have a cheaper build? Keep reading to see where they make up for it!

Their cheaper build quality may need some extra attention from time to time. What do we mean by ‘extra attention’? Well, in a few cases, there have been some minor issues with the headband coming loose. Although fixing it only requires a few turns of the screwdriver – some people prefer to not deal with it at all

They also use an MMCX cable that’s often seen on many Shure IEMs. Usually ‘phones with MMCX cables are designed for portable use (so if you’re a little bit confused, we understand). That being said, they do provide a long-lasting comfortable wearing experience that will keep your ears happy for hours at a time. 

Comfort – Long-Lasting or Short-Lived?

Using the firm adjustment notches on the actual headband may be more satisfying than the automatically adjustment feature on the AKG K702. While it does require manual adjustment, hearing the satisfying click at each notch is one of those features that never gets old. 

Sonic Performance – How Do They Sound?

How do they sound? The main reason they’re ranked so highly on our list is because of their excellent sonic performance. They provide extremely crisp detail separation and highly accurate imaging across genres ranging from classical to EDM. Their easy-going and fairly well-balanced response makes up for any points lost to a cheaper build. 

Unboxing & First Impressions

Take a look at the quick video below to see an unboxing and a few first impressions!

Versatility – Where Do They Perform At Their Best?

The M1060 really excel at blowing most listeners’ playback expectations out of the water. Although they could definitely use a higher-quality build – they have been consistently compared against $1,000 Audeze models (and passed with flying colors). 

If you’re someone who does a good job at taking care of your audio gear, the sonic performance is well worth some additional handling caution. They work great as a pair of studio reference cans, mixing/mastering, casual listening, critical listening, and even perform pretty well for gaming. 

If you’d like to see more in-depth information, use the button below to read our full review!

If you’d like to see the more customer reviews and/or the most up-to-date pricing info, click the button below


4. AKG K702

Technical Specs:

  • Circumaural (over-ear) ear cup design
  • Driver Type: Dynamic
  • Frequency Response: 10 Hz – 39,800 kHz
  • Impedance: 62 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 105 dB SPL/V
  • Dimensions: 4.45 x 7.83 x 8.35 inches
  • Weight: 8.3 ounces

Build Quality – Flimsy or Lightweight?

The AKG K702 are one of the best cans on this list to use as a studio reference monitor. They are very well-built and feature a unique headband design with an automatic sliding adjustment feature. 

They are fairly durable and are also among some of the most lightweight cans featured here. Their lightweight construction doesn’t skimp on build quality and also plays a major role in terms of comfort. 

Comfort – Long-Lasting or Short-Lived?

The unique headband design on these cans automatically adjusts to fit the contour of your head. Once you put them on your head, there is almost no need for any further adjustment. Their velour-covered memory foam ear padding provides enough space and cushion for most ear sizes. 

Sonic Performance – How Do They Sound?

When you’re using these as a studio reference monitor, you’ll notice that they produce a response that’s very flat and neutral. This is why they’re a great choice for both critical listening and mixing/mastering in the studio. When you need to get that perfectly-balanced mix or pinpoint any inaccuracies on your favorite albums – the K702 perform exactly as advertised. 

Unboxing & First Impressions

Take a look at the quick video below to see an unboxing and a few first impressions!

Versatility – Where Do They Perform At Their Best?

These cans excel at providing more than enough cushion and comfort for most head/ear sizes and shapes. They are easily one of (if not the most) comfortable cans out of the Top 8 listed here. The tie is still between these, the DT 990 Pro, the Fidelio X2, and possibly the HD 600. 

If you need a pair of reference cans that also make it feel like you’re hardly wearing any at all – the K702 are definitely a top competitor. If we had to highlight a single downside, it would be their slightly less accurate imaging. Overall, (for a pair of cans in this price range) they easily manage to meet and even surpass most listeners’ performance expectations. 

If you’d like to see more in-depth information, use the button below to read our full review!

If you’d like to see the more customer reviews and/or the most up-to-date pricing info, click the button below


5. HIFIMAN HE-400i

Technical Specs:

  • Circumaural (over-ear) ear cup design
  • Driver Type: Planar Magnetic
  • Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 35 kHz
  • Impedance: 35 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 93 dB/mW
  • Dimensions: 8 x 7 x 4.5 inches
  • Weight: 13.05 ounces

Build Quality – Flimsy or Lightweight?

The HIFIMAN HE 400i are pretty well-known in the audiophile community. Is their well-known reputation based on positive or negative feedback? 

One of main downsides of these cans is the included headphone. What do we mean by this? Well, for one, the detachable f-connector to 3.5 mm cable they use can be somewhat of a hassle to replace (if you ever needed to for whatever reason). 

Comfort – Long-Lasting or Short-Lived?

In terms of the ear cup and headband build, they are fairly well-constructed and comfortable to wear during longer listening sessions. They’re not the most comfy cans on this list, but do provide above-average comfort (especially at this price point). 

Sonic Performance – How Do They Sound?

They have a fairly neutral and accurate low-to-mid range response with highs that are extremely accurate and detailed. One of the other things you’ll notice is how crisp and clear the vocals sound. In the low end, they provide very little to no bass extension (which is only a downside if you mainly prefer bass-focused genres). 

Unboxing & First Impressions

Take a look at the quick video below to see an unboxing and a few first impressions!

Versatility – Where Do They Perform At Their Best?

Overall, the HE 400i are still a very popular choice for listeners ranging from casual to audiophile. While they aren’t necessarily the best for use as a reference can (due to their bright high end response) they excel at providing a very fun and exciting listening experience. 

If you can’t get past the proprietary f-connector cable because you like to replace and experiment stock cables – you probably want to keep scrolling. If you’re someone who’s looking for an affordable entry-level pair of open cans that are easily one of the most well-reviewed (in this price range) – they might be the perfect fit for you!

If you’d like to see more in-depth information, use the button below to read our full review!

If you’d like to see the more customer reviews and/or the most up-to-date pricing info, click the button below


6. Sennheiser HD 598 SR

Technical Specs:

  • Circumaural (over-ear) ear cup design
  • Driver Type: Unspecified by manufacturer
  • Frequency Response: 12 – 38,500 Hz
  • Impedance: 50 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: Unspecified by manufacturer
  • Dimensions: 8.1 x 4.1 x 9.4 inches
  • Weight: 11.8 ounces (with cable attached)

Build Quality – Flimsy or Lightweight?

If you’ve never used open back ‘phones before, the Sennheiser HD 598 SR are one of the best entry-level options available. They also have the quality build that you’d expect from one of the most well-established brands in this space. 

Comfort – Long-Lasting or Short-Lived?

Each ear cup has velour-covered padding that provides above-average ventilation. In most cases, you won’t experience any over-heating or sweat build up. The headband features a single strip of leatherette-covered padding that does a pretty good job at evenly-distributing most of the wearing weight.

Sonic Performance – How Do They Sound?

Their sound profile is well-balanced with great detail separation and fairly accurate imaging. Although they weren’t necessarily designed to be used for gaming, many people are of the opinion that they outperform other HD series models like the HD 600 (our #1 overall pick). 

Their surprisingly accurate 3D imaging and spacious soundstage makes them ideal for not only casual listening, but also for gaming and/or watching movies. 

Unboxing & First Impressions

Take a look at the quick video below to see an unboxing and a brief sound demo!

Versatility – Where Do They Perform At Their Best?

These cans excel at providing an awesome introduction to the world of open back cans for first time users. If you already own a pair of open cans, you might be more interested in one of the other models listed below. 

Their main drawback is the use of a proprietary cable that can be slightly more difficult to replace. Also, keep in mind that if you’re not a fan of a slightly mid-centric response (that’s otherwise extremely well-balanced) – they might not be the right pick for you. 

Overall, the HD 598 SR offer a level of comfort that helps further the reputation that Sennheiser has built up over the years. If you’re looking for a pair of entry-level cans that can be used for multiple types of listening as well as gaming and watching movies – the 598 SR might be exactly what you’re looking for. 

If you’d like to see more in-depth information, use the button below to read our full review!

If you’d like to see the more customer reviews and/or the most up-to-date pricing info, click the button below


7. Grado SR325e

Technical Specs:

  • Supra-aural (on-ear) ear cup design
  • Driver Type: Dynamic
  • Frequency Response: 18 – 24,000 Hz 
  • Impedance: 32 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 99.8 dB/mW
  • Dimensions: 1.97 x 6.69 x 7.09 inches
  • Weight: 0.52 lbs. 

Build Quality – Flimsy or Lightweight?

The Grado SR325e are handmade in Brooklyn, NY and have a decent build quality with minimal headband padding. As you can see in the picture above, they have a very unique outside appearance which makes them look pretty industrial and durable. 

Just like the DT 990 Pro, they also have a built-in 3.5 mm headphone cable. Both ear cushions are fully replaceable if you find that they’re not the absolute best fit for your ears.

Comfort – Long-Lasting or Short-Lived?

Their lightweight construction allows you to wear them for hours (although some people find themselves wishing for just a bit more padding on the headband). 

Sonic Performance – How Do They Sound?

Their sound signature is very bright which means they have a noticeably accented high end response. They’re not quite as v-shaped as the DT 990, since they provide a fairly well-balanced low-to-mid range response. Their bass response is accurate but lacking in depth and extension. Their sonic performance may turn you off if you prefer a v-shaped or neutral sound profile.

Unboxing & First Impressions

Take a look at the quick video below to see an unboxing and a few first impressions!

Versatility – Where Do They Perform At Their Best?

Although the SR325e may look extremely durable from the outside, they do slightly lack in terms of build quality. Since they are fairly lightweight (especially considering their full-metal ear cups) they can easily be worn for hours at a time. 

Similar to the DT 990 Pro, they also have a sound profile that’s less ideal for use as a reference monitor in the studio and better-suited for casual listening. If you primarily listen to hip-hop, EDM, or other styles of music that require a deep, extended bass response – you’ll probably enjoy one of the other models below. 

On the other hand, if you’re someone who favors a bright and lively sound profile with crisp and detailed highs – these might be exactly what you’re looking for. 

If you’d like to see more in-depth information, use the button below to read our full review!

If you’d like to see the more customer reviews and/or the most up-to-date pricing info, click the button below


8. Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO

Technical Specs:

  • Circumaural (over-ear) ear cup design
  • Driver Type: Dynamic 
  • Frequency Response: 5 Hz – 35 kHz
  • Impedance: 250 Ohms
  • Sensitivity: 96 dB/mW
  • Dimensions: 8.7 x 4.7 x 9.1 inches
  • Weight: 8.81 ounces (w/o cable)

Build Quality – Flimsy or Lightweight?

The Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro are well-known among DJs, audio professionals, and casual listeners. What is it about them that makes them such a popular choice among this crowd?

Well for one, they’re very well-built and durable. Their non-detachable 3.5 mm coiled cable is thicker around than most and was built to withstand any and all regular wear and tear. 

Comfort – Long-Lasting or Short-Lived?

Two, these cans are extremely comfortable and have both replaceable ear pads and headband padding. In fact, they are in a 3-way tie for comfort alongside the Philips Fidelio X2/27 and AKG K702.

Sonic Performance – How Do They Sound?

Their v-shaped sound signature produces accented highs that may be slightly off-putting if you’re used to listening with extremely well-balanced and flat reference cans. 

The DT 990 Pro tend to be very divisive due to their sharp high end response which makes them ideal for listening to genres like electronic, EDM, hip-hop, house music, and other more bass-focused styles of music.  

Unboxing & First Impressions

Take a look at the quick video below to see an unboxing and a few first impressions!

Versatility – Where Do They Perform At Their Best?

As we briefly mentioned above, these cans excel at providing an extremely comfortable and lightweight listening experience. Their divisive sound signature is what splits most people’s opinions since not everyone favors a sharp high end response. 

Overall, these cans are most ideal for you if you spend long hours in the studio or listening at home. They would be a great choice for you as long as you don’t mind the non-detachable coiled cable or v-shaped sound signature.

If you’d like to see more in-depth information, use the button below to read our full review!

If you’d like to see the more customer reviews and/or the most up-to-date pricing info, click the button below


What Do You Think? Which One Was Your Favorite?

Now that you’ve browsed through the entire list, what do you think? Were there any specific features or models that really stood out as your personal favorite? Do you agree with our #1 pick – or would you choose another pair as the clear winner?

We hope you found the information here helpful! No matter what your specific style of listening happens to be – we feel confident that at least one of the Best Budget Open Headphones here will be perfect for your needs! 

Let us know what you think by leaving a comment below! If you have any questions about anything else we covered here, feel free to ask below! We always do our best to respond as quickly as we can! Thanks for stopping by to check out our recommendations, we hope to see you here again!

6 thoughts on “Top 8 Best Budget Open Back Headphones

  1. Thanks for the article.  I am a frequent flyer so as you can probably imagine headphones are high on my priority list.  I have however been caught out with very expensive, not so great sets in the past so this page has given me a real lot of information that I can use.  I do have a question though – and apoligies if i missed it or didn’t undertand the terminology.  I didn’t see anything about noise cancelling or plane compatability in connectors. Do you know if any of these are recommended for air travel?

    Paul

    1. Hey Paul, 

      I think a lot of people can relate to your experience on the plane. Since open back headphones leak quite a bit of sound, they aren’t the best choice for flying on a plane. 

      By “leak sound”, I mean that anyone within a few feet of you will be able to hear your music, podcast, or whatever else you’re listening to. (You can read more about open back vs. closed back headphones here if you’re interested.)

      That’s why they aren’t ideal for listening in public, especially where you’re sitting shoulder to shoulder with strangers. Open headphones are designed to be listened to at home or in any other quiet environment where you won’t have to worry about disturbing anyone around you. 

      I’m not sure which noise cancelling headphones you’ve had a negative experience with in the past, but I would recommend reading more about the Bose QuietComfort 20

      If you’re not a fan of in-ear noise cancelling headphones, I would recommend the Sony WH-1000XM3. They’re the updated version of the Sony WH1000XM2 which are widely-regarded as being one of the best noise cancelling headphones to date. 

      Thanks for your question, let me know if you have any more. 🙂

  2. I love headphones and it’s difficult to choose the right ones for me sometimes.

    But you’ve got some really nice headphones here and I like the way you described everything in detail. I definitely look for comfort and sound first. If the headphones don’t feel right or sound great I won’t buy them. I’ve always felt that Bose made the best headphones. The Sennheiser headphones might be an option for me too.

    1. Thanks Rob, I’m glad you found it helpful!

      I agree, comfort and sound quality are two features that can either make or break a pair of headphones (regardless of wearing style).

      Bose is definitely a well-respected brand, but they have yet to step into the open back arena. When it comes to noise cancelling headphones, they’re one of the best!

      If you’ve never tried open back headphones, you might like the Sennheiser HD600. Then again, the HD 598 SR might be a better entry-level option.

      Let me know if you have any questions, I’d be happy to help. 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

  3. I thought this was a great review. It had a lot of very pertinent info and I liked the more detailed reviews for those I was interested in finding out more about. 

    I have Parrot Zik3 headphones – they start to hurt my ears after a little while, so I really liked the fact that you have info here about comfort. I also liked that you included information on the type of music/gaming the headphones were most appropriate for, that can make a big difference.

     I like the sound suppression that my Parrot Ziks have when I use them on airplanes. Can you tell me what is the main difference between open and closed cans? Is it possible to have sound suppression?

    1. I’m glad you found it helpful Erin,

      Comfort is definitely a top priority (especially if you spend over $100). Unfortunately, even when you invest in a more expensive pair of headphones, premium comfort isn’t always a guarantee. (Although every pair here scores well in that department.)

      There are quite a few differences between closed and open cans. They look somewhat similar but each style reproduces a different kind of listening experience. You can read more about open back vs. closed back headphones here for more details. 🙂

      Since their ear cups aren’t closed, they allow airflow and sound to leak. That’s the main reason why noise cancelling open back headphones by design can’t exist. I hope that helps answer your question, thanks for browsing our recommendations!

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