There are a lot of headphones for music production in the market. In this article, we’ve highlighted the best ones to help you choose.
Headphones are used every day by everyday people. But when it comes to creative purposes, specifically music production, technical headphones with advanced features are required.
Studio headphones are an integral part of music production. They are more refined than regular headphones, so critical listening can be done with them. They are typically used by sound engineers and music producers to check sounds, mixes, recordings, and the like.
Types of Studio Headphones
Studio headphones are classified mainly into two categories: open-back headphones and closed-back headphones.
Open-back headphones have vented ear cups that allow air to flow freely between your ears and the driver. They can be used for long hours because they’re very comfortable. Since these headphones are vented, they don’t cancel out background noise. Nonetheless, open-backs are great for mixing and listening since they reproduce sound accurately and naturally.
Closed-backs have a much better noise-cancellation feature than open-back headphones. With this kind of headphone, you can hear all the details of the sound or music you’re listening to. They’re the go-to headphones when it comes to tracking.
However, they’re less accurate when it comes to mixing and mastering due to low-frequency build-ups. Closed-back headphones are also less natural-sounding than open-backs.
Now, with a lot of studio headphones for music production in the market, it can be hard to select which one to buy. To help you choose, we listed down the best ones in this article. Here they are:
1. Sony MDR-7506
Sony is one of the top brands when it comes to many devices and appliances. These closed-back headphones are commonly used in broadcasting and recording studios. They have been around for a long time now and are a staple in the music production scene.
The over-ear earcups on these professional headphones are very effective for passively filtering environmental noises, which can be potentially disturbing. Sony MDR-7506 utilizes a large 40 mm PET diaphragm and neodymium magnets. It also produces a relatively wide frequency response of 10 to 20,000 Hz.
These headphones’ sound is also considered natural, so it remains the industry’s standard studio headphones. The sound quality is also accurate enough for critical listening. Sony MDR-7506 headphones are a great all-around device for tracking, mastering, mixing, and music producing.
The lightweight earpads are made of faux leather. Even though the design is basic, it’s very sturdy. In addition, it’s compact and can be folded, making it very portable. A pair of these is also very cheap.
2. Audio-Technica ATH-M50X
These are arguably the most popular and highly recommended headphones when it comes to music production. Even though they are quite expensive, they surely don’t skimp on the quality.
This fully immersive pair of headphones is the penultimate model of the critically-acclaimed M series from Audio Technica. It’s a closed-back type with an over-ear design.
The ATH-M50X uses 45 mm dynamic diaphragms that make it suitable for recording and tracking music. These studio headphones provide a frequency response of 15Hz – 28kHz. They have a very crisp sound quality with excellent bass, treble, and midrange, producing well-balanced audio. Furthermore, these headphones have copper-clad voice coils that enhance their performance.
The earcups can be rotated up to 180 degrees, so listening with just one ear is possible. The headband and earpads are professional-grade, making them very convenient to use even for extended periods. ATH-M50X is great for DJ-ing and music production.
3. Beyerdynamic DT 880 Pro
These are semi-open back headphones that are specifically developed for studio and professional use. DT 800 Pro has a 45 mm driver with a frequency response of 5 Hz to 35 kHz.
One unique thing about these headphones is that all of the parts are replaceable. Therefore, you can change them whenever you want or whenever you need to. Their circumaural design prevents strain, so they can be used for long hours. They have adjustable soft pads so that your head won’t feel squeezed.
For the sound quality, it has fantastic bass and treble response. DT 880 Pro, being semi-open back, can give you the best of both worlds. It can produce a natural and accurate sound that is a feature of open-backs, yet it can provide focus and power like closed-back headphones.
These over-ear headphones have an impedance of 250 Ohm. Mixing and mastering engineers usually prefer these because of their flat frequency response. They can also be used for both listening and mixing. Lastly, they are comfortable and durable.
4. Sennheiser HD 280 Pro
These headphones feature a closed-back, around-the-ear design. They are durable enough for travel and can be used for demanding studio functions.
Sennheiser HD 280 Pro has a “high ambient noise attenuation” feature that blocks out most exterior noise. The sound it produces is clear and accurate, making these headphones a steal with their low price.
It has soft earpads allowing you to wear it for extended periods of time. The earcups can also be rotated and folded, so they’re perfect for travel.
These headphones are amazing for listening to every music genre, from pop to classical to metal. They produce a nice flat frequency response, and you can hear all the details of the sound. Also, Sennheiser HD 280 Pro has a decent noise-filtering feature.
5. Shure SRH1440
These open-back headphones create a natural soundscape with increased sound depth. They have low impedance and are donned with 40 mm neodymium diaphragm drivers.
They are well-built and durable, with their adjustable steel-framed headband and ergonomic ear cups that are convenient for long periods of listening.
High-resolution audio can also be expected due to their robust copper coils with reinforced Kevlar outer coating.
6. Neumann Studio Headphones NDH 20
The headphones for music production feature a closed-back circumaural design. They have 38 mm neodymium drivers and an impedance of 150 ohms. Accurate stereo imaging and linear frequency response guarantee top-notch sound quality.
Neumann NDH 20 is best when you need isolation during the mixing, mastering, or sound engineering processes. Ideal for critical monitoring, it helps keep the audio neutral for editing. It can highlight even the subtlest of nuances.
It has a rugged design reinforced by a steel frame. The earcups are padded and can be folded for easy and compact storage. These headphones come with one coiled and one straight cord.
7. Sennheiser HD 599
These headphones are another product from Sennheiser. They have 38 mm oval-shaped diaphragms. With these headphones, you can experience an excellent natural spatial performance brought by its high-end proprietary Sennheiser transducers.
Sennheiser HD 599 provides outstanding comfort with its Ergonomic Acoustic Refinement design (EAR). The earpads are replaceable and equipped with large cushions, making your listening experience enjoyable.
The premium design makes use of high-quality components. The headband and earcups have matte and metal detailing, so they look very professional and classy.
These headphones come with 2 straight cables – one 3 m and one 1.2 m – and one adaptor.
With the abundance of headphones for music production, you have to know what features you prefer and for what purposes you’ll use them before purchasing one. There are plenty of high-quality options in the market, so it’s best to narrow down your choices by researching their features.