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Choosing your Headphones

Updated on May 11, 2009

Choosing your Headphones

There are four main categories of headphones. The differences that separates them are their shape and types of pads. In the following text you will learn about this types.

Sennheiser HD-650


This type of headphones have a large foam pad that involves the ear delivering an almost perfect fit to its shape. The circumaural headphones can be opened has the Sennheiser HD-650 or closed as the Beyerdynamic DT-880.

Opened headphones have openings in their body to allow a better sound resonance but they let sound pass in both ways.The one that you are listening and the surrounding sound.

Ex: Sennheiser HD-650 and Audio-Technica

Closed headphones block outside sounds more effectively, but they also sometimes resonate worse giving you the idea that you are inside a metal can.

Unless you need to attenuate the surrounding sound you should go for the open headphones.

Grado Headphones
Grado Headphones


This type of headphones have pads that will make contact only on the top of your ears. There are only a few brands that make this type of headphones since it is a very specific type of pads. On the early 80's almost all portable headphones were like these ones but nowadays they are not very used, since almost every portable device comes bundled with earbuds. This obviously don't mean that they aren't better then the ones that I've presented here in this page, only different. For example Grado makes this kind of headphones. In this case they are opened headphones but you can also find closed headphones.

EX: Grado RS1

Canalphones or IEM's:

A Canalphone or a IEM (In ear Monitor) are a type of headphones that fit directly in your ear canal. This headphones have a superb capacity of canceling the surrounding sounds injecting music directly in your ear drums. The disadvantages of choosing for IEM's are subject to your ears size and feel. They mostly come with several sizes of rubber pads so you can find one size that suits you the best.

For example you can search for Sure or Etymotic in our store. Other brands also have this type of headphones.

Ex: Shure E3G Etymotic ER-4


These are the most common type of headphones, almost every mp3 player comes bundled with this type of headphones. They are placed directly outside of the ear canal, but without fully enveloping it. The clear advantage of this type of headphones is its price, but is clearly the worse option that you can make in terms of sound quality.

EX: Yuin PK3


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      Jamster2759 9 years ago

      Nice hub I enjoyed it alot