Before we jump to our top picks for best over ear headphones, there are some crucial points you need to take into account when you are going to buy the best over ear headphones.
1. Connection type of the headphones
Depending upon the devices you use, you have to think of the connection type of the headphones you expect to purchase. Failing to do that means you may end up with fancy headphones that are incompatible with your devices There are several types of connection: a standard 3.5mm, dual 3.5mm, wired USB, wireless USB, and Bluetooth.
For headphones made exclusively for PCs, they will require you to install extra drivers or software. If not, you will not be able to access the advanced features such as EQ settings or surround sound. If you are looking for USB headphones on some gaming console, please make sure such compatibility is clearly stated on the box.
2. Comfort of the headphones
The best over ear headphones are comfortable and do not cause discomfort. They are made of durable, lightweight materials. Using decent quality headphones reduced the risk of a headache, neck pain or an earache after a few hours of usage.
Please note that the materials used for the headphones are not the only factor that determines if the device would be a comfortable one.
3. Open or Closed headphones?
First of all, let’s make clear about the main difference between Open headphones and Closed headphones.
Closed headphones have a solid cup around the speaker, so that your ears are completely isolated from the noises around you. Closed headphones are the nicer solution if you want to focus solely on what you hear and do not get distracted by environmental noises. And people around you will not hear any sound coming from the headphones.
As for the open headphones, their main advantage is that they produce more natural, less muffled sound. That’s possible due to the punctured ear cups. Some kind of sound would be a lot better if you use open headphones. However, the drawback is that you will hear outside noises and other people will hear noises from your headphones.
4. Sound quality of the headphones
All sound aficionados would agree that the high-quality sound can make a huge difference.
- Surround sound: The true surround sound of headphones comes from the multiple drivers kept in each side of the earpad for different audio channels. Users can also hear the sound from different angles.
- Soundstage: What is soundstage? Soundstage in headphones is the ability of the headphones that can recreate sound cues in a room. In other words, it’s the recreation of sound exactly like how the source sound is created.
The simulated surround sound is not a necessity, but let’s say it is an attractive feature the best over ear headphones should have. But if you are looking for cheap over ear headphones, you’d better stand back from those featuring a surround sound.
The best over ear headphones on the market
Eager to know what are the best over ear headphones? Here is our top picks:
1. Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro
The Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro are open-back headphones, and they are designed to be used at home or in the studio for professional analytical listening. Sound can get in and out, and the best thing about these headphones is that the open-back design gives you a great sense of space while you listen. Soundstage is also quite wide, allowing even the most “carelessly-lazy” listener to identify the exact location of where each instrument is being played.
If you've been hunting for a pair of the best over-ear headphones that are used by the world's leading audio engineers, these are the perfect ones.
2. Sony WH-1000XM4
The Sony WH-1000XM4 not only delivers great sound and packs excellent noise cancellation, but they also manage to do all of those great things wirelessly.
Other over-ear headphones offer exceptional sound quality, of course, but the WH-1000XM4 succeeds to offer the best balance of features and performance.
While they don't look considerably different from their forerunners, there is a number of new features including multipoint pairing, DSEE Extreme upscaling, conversational awareness, and auto-play/pause using a built-in sensor. All of these wonderful features can easily help the WH-1000XM4 to secure the throne of the best over ear headphones in 2020.
3. Sennheiser HD 800
The Sennheiser HD 800 are, hands down, some of the best-sounding pairs of over-ear headphones in the world, lovingly complimented by audiophiles all over the world. The Sennheiser HD 800 is paired with the proper hardware, they sound absolutely exceptional – balanced in every way.
But, they're particularly expensive and may require more audio equipment than the average user.
4. JBL Tune 750BTNC
JBL is not a strange name in the world of headphones as well as Bluetooth speakers. Consistently reliable, loyal consumers know what to expect from the brand – decent sound quality for a very decent price.
The JBL Tune 750BTNC is a superior successor as a high-spec and nicely-priced set of over-ear headphones.
The JBL Tune 750BTNC sounds great, looks great, and also fits very well. Reliable and easy to use. However, because of its reasonable price, you might miss waterproofing and a few minor features. Overall, the JBL Tune 750BTNC is wonderful for budget consumers.
1. Will headphones work with smartphones?
If you choose wired headphones with a 3.5mm cable, it will be compatible with your smartphone, given your smartphone has a 3.5mm headphones jack. However, some kinds of wireless headphones will not be compatible with a smartphone because smartphones connect wirelessly to headphones through Bluetooth, whereas gaming headphones typically use 2.4GHz radio frequency connections. If you want to connect headphones to your phone wirelessly, simply just find a Bluetooth over ear headphones.
2. Is Noise Cancelling worth it?
Are noise-cancelling headphones worth it? Yes. If you wish to protect your hearing, reduce environmental distractions, and enjoy a better audio experience, then this technology will surprise you with its impactful results.
3. What is an headphones amplifier?
Some headphones are designed to run from home Hi-Fi systems with a little more power than your average portable player or PC sound card. Unfortunately, there are many Hi-Fi products which while being excellent at their primary function have a cheap amplifier put into the headphone circuit.
A headphone amplifier is designed to drive and power headphones alone. Under the driving process, headphones will end up sounding flat and lacking dynamics. In many cases, an underpowered pair of high-end headphones will be outperformed by easier to drive low end headphones unless paired with the right amplifier.
4. How loud can headphones go?
When properly driven, most headphones will manage levels high enough that can cause hearing damage. Please note that hearing damage is permanent – and you don’t want that to happen to you. Don’t turn your headphones up to extra-high volumes because later, you will regret it. It’s also easy to train your ears to be used to listening at low volumes, which is highly recommended.
5. Are expensive headphones worth it?
On average, higher priced headphones do sound better. They are generally crisper, have a better frequency response, and are normally built from better quality materials. When you're considering a budget for headphones, you should know one thing - there are diminishing returns.
It’s obvious to see that the Sony WH-1000XM4 is one of the best over-ear headphones overall on the market at the moment. They not only deliver great sound and pack excellent noise cancellation wirelessly, but they also offer the best balance of features and performance.
For sound specialists and professionals, the Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro and JBL Tune 750BTNC are the perfect choices here. High price, but can meet all the professional demands.
If you want to save a little money, then look no further than the JBL Tune 750BTNC. They sound great, look great, fit very well, reliable and easy to use. And off these go with a very reasonable price.
Well, that’s all for this guide right now. We hope this guide could help you to choose for you the best over-ear headphones. Choose wisely and bring the most beautiful sound to your ears!