First off, Beats by Dre will not be mentioned in this article. While they make some serviceable headphone models, they are far from the leaders in the industry. But what are the best headphone brands out there? Who makes the best models? And how durable are they? These are the questions we’ll help answer, as well as give some recommendations for models we think are a good use of your hard-earned cash.
#1 Sennheiser – HD25
It’s hard not to hear about Sennheiser when you look into headphones. They’ve been around since the end of World War II and have a reputation for making some of the most legendary headphones around. The Sennheiser HD-25’s are widely regarded as on of the most “bomb-proof” (durable) models around. And because of this, you’ll see these in many recording studios around the world as well as in the arsenal of DJ’s. You really can’t go wrong with any of Sennheiser’s models, but the HD-25 hold a dear place in headphone history due to their attention to detail and how they can be repaired to work like new.
#2 Sony – MDRV6
Next up is basically the direct competitor to the Sennheisers. You’ll see the Sony MDRV6’s with DJ setups all over the place. For many it has been there go to model for decades. Sony is well known for more than just headphones but their experience in the studio monitor headphone space has given them a great reputation for a couple decades. It’s really a toss-up between the MDRV6 and the Sennheiser HD25’s for best DJ or studio monitor set.
#3 Shure – SE315
Shure is most well known for their stellar work on professional microphones. But a lot of what they learned there has passed into their amazing sound isolation technologies used in their headphones. The Shure SE315 in-ear are one of the most well-build sets of headphones available. This is because Shure allows you to fully replace the cable if it becomes damaged. And this isn’t even to mention the amazing deep bass and accurate highs that these tiny headphones can dish out. Throw away those terrible ear buds and step it up a couple levels. These are the best small headphones you can buy.
#4 Beyerdynamic – DT-990-Pro-250
We needed to put in a less than household name in this list. Beyerdynamic is a family owned Germany business that has been in the audio business since 1924. And their products really show the pedigree that they have built up over the years. The Beyerdynamic – DT-990-Pro-250 are probably the best bang for dollar headphone purchase available if you are looking for a reference set of headphones. These will give you 90% of what a much, much more expensive set offers (we’re talking thousands of dollars here). Awesome build quality, near reference sound reproduction, comfortable cups, a full 2-year warranty… What else do you want?
#5 Koss – KSC75
Ok… Here me out here. I put these on the list because these are outrageous value. These are $15 headphones that outperform most hundred dollar pairs. If you need something that sounds great but won’t break the bank then these are your best bet. And Koss offers a lifetime warranty on these which firmly positions them in the buy it for life BIFL category. Sure, they won’t sound nearly as good as any of the top 4, but they will certainly get the job done. And you’ll have some money left over to buy a couple albums with the savings.
Here is the full list of our top 5 best headphones from least expensive to most expensive.