Walking in the park to your favorite music, playing sports, watching movies and TV shows, online calls with colleagues, listening to books, long rides in noisy transport, gaming, and streaming – these are just some of the activities where headphones may be needed. We rarely use headphones for short periods, most often we wear them for long periods. That is why it is important to buy headphones specifically for you and your needs.
There are lots of characteristics and types of headphones for all tastes.
How to choose headphones
As with any purchase of equipment, you must first decide on a budget and the purpose for which you need the device.
For example, headphones without a microphone often provide much better and clearer sound quality than a headset. That’s because technically the main purpose of the headphones is to provide quality sound for listening to music and the main purpose of the headset is to recognize the voice. Accordingly, if you do not have a goal to use headphones for calls, you cannot focus on the microphone among all the specifications. Or if sound quality is fundamentally important for you, then you are more likely to look specifically at models without a microphone, but with good noise isolation and high frequency.
If you already understand what you need headphones for, it’s time to familiarize yourself with what the varieties are. Headphones can be full size, over-the-ear, and earbuds.
These are headphones that completely encompass and cover your ears. They tend to be quite large and can be open or closed depending on the speaker back cover, which is either grilled or hermetically sealed. Full-size headphones should buy for whom it is important for sound clarity, bass, and very good isolation from background noise. These headphones due to the size and softness of the ear cushions are considered the most comfortable for long-term use. But the most uncomfortable in terms of portability and the amount of space they take up.
Not critically different from full-size, but obviously smaller and not covering your ear completely. They fit over your ears rather than covering them. Buying over-the-ear headphones can be a compromise solution for those who like the good sound and portability of headphones.
The most portable option takes up little space. They can be used on the go and you almost do not have to worry about them falling off, because they are inside the ear. Because of this, by the way, they provide some insulation from outside noise. This is a great option for students, as you can take them everywhere, and listen to the study material at any convenient place. A great solution for studying so that you don’t have to resort to buying research paper and handling the task yourself.
The downside of these headphones is that sometimes the sound quality can be lower than in full-size. And of course, they are easy to lose. Some models can fall out of your ears, so not every model is suitable for sports, contrary to the often heard opinion that earmolds are perfect for it.
Do you need separate headphones for your computer?
You can use the same headphones with both your smartphone and your computer, as long as it is a Bluetooth connection or you have the same input port. But sometimes there is a need to choose different headphones for the smartphone and computer. As an example use the case if you have a phone from Apple and the computer is from another manufacturer and you cannot connect AirPods to the computer.
What to pay attention to, when you decide to buy headphones
When you choose headphones pay attention to these characteristics:
- connection type.
- the battery life for Bluetooth headphones
- type of microphone
Headphones can be wired or wireless. When buying wired headphones be sure to clarify whether the type of connection matches what your gadget can provide. If you choose Bluetooth headphones is worth checking the Bluetooth version on the headphones and computer, or smartphone – for ideal work they must match. Headsets for the computer most often have standard connectors for connection.
When buying wireless headphones, it is important to consider their battery life. On average, this can be 4-6 hours. Determine if this matches your needs. If the runtime of the headphones is critical for you it is possible to buy headphones with a hybrid type of connection. And then in case, the battery runs out, you can continue to work your gadget through the cord.
Type of microphone
The microphone in headphones can be built-in, on a wire, or a holder. If the quality of the sound you playback is important to you, then it is worth choosing a microphone on the holder. You can adjust the sound by moving the microphone closer or farther away.
The built-in design is one of the worst mounts for a microphone. In addition to the user’s voice, it often picks up all the ambient sounds and noises. The only advantage of such a mount – is invisibility and the good aesthetic appearance of the headset in general.
Also, when selecting a model of headphones, you can understand such terms as impedance, frequency range, AFC.
What headphones to choose
- For those who work and conduct online calls will be a relevant choice among headsets. It will be necessary to understand the settings and types of microphones, and the variations in the connection of headphones to different devices.
- To use comfortable headphones with active movement is better to pick up a wireless model, earbuds, or cervical headphones. In this case, it will be great to pay attention to water-repellent coating.
- For those who care to immerse themselves in the sound of the headphones and not be distracted by extraneous noise, the main criterion will be noise isolation. In that case, it is worth adding to the basket full-size, overhead closed headphones or earbuds. The same parameter is worth considering when working in an office or other noisy room.
- If you are a gamer, there are a number of gamer headsets for you.
- A professional musician or a future Dj will pay attention to the full-size headphones in the highest price category and specific brands that emphasize equipment for professionals associated with music.