We all know that the headphones available in a great variety of designs and sizes. However, there is nothing better option than the best open back headphone if someone prefers reduced isolation and an immersive listening experience. This technological equipment is known for developing a spacious soundstage. In this post, we will talk about this equipment and give you very informational content. Your knowledge will get a boost for sure after reading this complete article for sure.
Which is best: Closed back or Open back headphones?
This type of question is common to arise in the mind of people while buying a pair of headphones. It solely depends on the requirement that varies from one individual to another. Let’s first talk about the open back headphones.
Open back headphones are the ones that let the air goes through ear cups to the element of the speaker. It ensures that no pressure get buildup and affect the sound quality along with no echoes in the headphones. It is the major reason that a great number of head-end headphones have an open back design.
On the other hand, the closed back headphones have a fully sealed back that doesn’t allow the sound to pass through ear ups and instead it let it out for reaching your ear. It may be better at blocking outside noise, but it came at the expense of affecting naturalness in the music.
So, if you are looking for a headphone to listen to high-quality audio files critically, then the open back ones are the better choice. However, if you want to listen to music on the way in the train or plane, then closed back will be a better choice. We suggest the professional people go for open-back headphones as it transfers the sound naturally to the ears.
What are the best open back headphones in 2021?
It is quite evident that you will find a great variety of options while buying open back headphones. They manufactured by a great number of brands in various price ranges. All these things are enough for confusing anyone’s mind that may result in making the wrong choice. For helping our readers, we have created a guide about the best open back headphones in 2021. Let’s check out and buy your favorite one.
Best Open Back Headphones Under $2000
1.1 Sennheiser HD 800 S (Editor’s choice)
The Sennheiser HD 800 S has been called the best open-back headphones for a plethora of reasons. Besides the expensive price tag, the other notable areas they boast — sturdy metallic construction paired with large comfy ear cups.
These headphones come with a large 56 mm drive, which is supposedly the largest ever used in dynamic headphones. These open-back headphones are a dream come true for audiophiles wanting a clear, sharp, and balanced sound.
Supplied with one of a kind absorber technology, the HD 800 S does an impeccable job in mitigating frequency response peaks for better music experience. Moreover, these headphones arrive with two connecting cables — a quarter-inch and a balanced four-pin XLR.
1.2 HEDD Audio HEDDphone (best speaker-like headphone)
The HEDD Audio HEDDphone is an understated headphone at this price tag. This premium headphone brand has ensured that these headphones ooze out detailed and crystal clear music, irrespective of the environment you are using these.
These headphones come with a single exchangeable 2.2-meter cable. Equipped with the AMT (Air Motion Transformer) technology, these headphones boast of the same driver used in speakers.
Best Open Back Headphones Under $1000
2.1 Grado GS1000E Statement Series (best premium pick)
The Grado GS1000E is a classically designed headphone that you can buy for having a brilliant experience. There is a leather coated headband added on the device, allowing you to wear it for a long time. This well-built product has connected earcups that can be adjusted through metal sliding options. The presence of stitching provides an attractive touch to its aesthetic. Its earcups manufactured from mahogany material for better protection.
The company has added firm foam on the earpads for adding comfort to your listening experience. On top of that, these earpads are very airy and light, ensuring unique sound signatures. Both high & low frequencies have complex harmonics that you will enjoy for sure. It is one of the best open-back headphones that offer a unique sound to the listeners.
- Provide hi-end sound effortlessly
- Equipped with stunning wooden cups
- Provide very rich bodied vocals
- Cost almost US$ 1000
2.2 HiFiMAN HE-560 (best in design)
Boasting of a powerful drive system, the HiFiMAN HE-560 is perhaps the best open-backed planar magnetic headphones under $1000. These headphones entice listeners with elegant wood finish ear cups paired with a metal frame and soft leather headband.
These headphones include durable materials like the uniquely designed cable composed of crystalline copper and silver. Featuring single-ended drivers, the HE-560 provided a more natural soundstage and spatial imaging. Weighing closely about 14 ounces, these headphones are light and comfortable while having them on for long periods.
Best Open Back Headphones Under $500
3.1 Sennheiser HD 660 S (perfect alternative to first one)
If you aren’t impressed by the quality and build the previous choice, then the Sennheiser HD 660 S will surely woo your mind. It is a dynamic headphone that equips with improved transducers for offering low harmonic distortion.
This exceptional product provides a great balance of performance, value, and construction. There is a wider frequency response offered by these headphones ranging from 10 Hz to 41kHz.
It is the best open back headphone thanks to its solid resistance of 150 Ohms. When considered its design, they are fully comfortable to build along with soft & thick padding. On top of that, it equips with detachable cables that don’t get damaged at all. Overall, this awesome headphone is a perfect choice to make for enjoying a pleasant experience.
3.2 Shure SRH1840 Professional (best stay-at-home headphone)
SRH1840 Professional is Shure’s first open-back, circumaural headphone. Comprising high-quality materials, the headphone boasts a padded, lightweight steel headband. The headband offers comfort to the ears, making it the ideal piece of listening device for indoor use. This feature 40mm neodymium drivers, which give out impressive music across different frequency ranges.
The SRH1840 Professional is supplied with two cables paired with gold-plated connectors that fit right into each of the ear cups. The major downside of having these is — that they’re not compatible when traveling because these aren’t foldable.
Best Open Back Headphone Under $400
4.1 Sennheiser HD 600 Open Back Professional Headphone (best overall)
Nothing can beat the critical listening experience offered by the magnificent Sennheiser HD600. It comes with an excellent build along with providing a well-balanced sound to the listeners.
There is a unique sound reproduction provided by these comfortable over-ear headphones that come with large ear cups. Furthermore, the open back construction of this product let the headphones pass an incredible amount of air.
4.2 AKG K702 Reference Classic Studio (best under US$ 200)
If you have a budget under US$ 200, this great and comfortable set of open back headphone is a perfect option to go for. It is an efficient device for both critical listening and professional use. If you prefer listening to high-quality music in a quiet environment, then it is the investment that you need to make.
The retro construction, along with larger circular ear cups make sure you feel fully comfortable while wearing it. They might not have enough portability and has a bulky built, but the performance offered by this headphone makes sure you enjoy the perfect experience.
We suggest you buying this earphone if you prefer to enjoy critical listening. It isn’t a suitable option to go if you commute consistently and want to enjoy music during that time. It sounds brilliantly with an amp as well as high-res audio.
Best Open Back Headphone Under $300
5.1 Sennheiser PC 373D (ideal for gaming)
If you are looking the best open back headphone for gaming, then you can go for Sennheiser PC 373D thanks to the wide soundstage. It may have simple construction, but the perfect gaming experience offered by these headphones will blow your mind. It has a thick-padded headband along with massive earpads for better comfort.
Furthermore, this headphone set has a large mic that ensures you can deliver clear messages to teammates. These drivers provided a frequency response between 15 Hz-28 kHz with a 50 Ohms resistance. That’s not all; there is a very solid immersive experience offered by an in-line dongle along with 7.1 channel Dolby surround sound.
5.2 Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X High-Fidelity Gaming Headset
With an excellent 3D wing support system and advanced 53mm drivers, this robust headphone set can offer pretty fantastic sound reproduction. Its open-air construction provides crystal clear clarity in sound to ensure that the users have an exceptional experience.
It can work brilliantly for both listening songs and enjoy gaming perfectly. There is a simple volume control added on the device for ensuring convenient use for the buyers.
5.3 GRADO SR325e (best audiophile headphone)
The SR325e is one of GRADO’s highest-selling headphones under the Prestige series. Sporting the similar and visually-appealing design, these headphones charm listeners with some nostalgic vibes.
The look and feel of these headsets are robust and promise to last longer than expectancy. Moreover, the ear cups on these can rotate 360-degrees, making it a feature to consider for traveling purposes.
The SR325e delivers sharp music and bliss to the ears. The notable point about having these is — crystal clear and bright music under all environments. These are undeniably the worthy pieces of sound machines under $300, that give top-end headsets a run for their money.
Best Open Back Headphone Under $200
6.1. Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro (best mid-range pick)
Known for exceptional sound quality, the Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro is something that you will love to buy. This open ear headphone is an ideal studio application despite being available at an affordable price.
It is a perfect mixture of strong bass, treble sound, and transparent performance. There are circumaural & soft ear pads added in this equipment for providing a tremendous wearing comfort. The rigid and sturdy build of this product ensures that it can easily tackle with accidental falls.
You will get a soft carrying case and adapter along with headphones in this package. You can buy it in two different colors- grey and black for giving you some extra choice. Furthermore, the availability of two variants makes sure you enjoy all types of music with this headphone.
6.2. Audio-Technica AUD ATHAD1000X (best budget-friendly pick)
If you have a little bit lower budget, then these incredible & spacious headphones can be the choice that you can make. Available at a price below US$ 120, you don’t have to put too much pressure on the pocket for buying this open back headphone.
They made for individuals who prefer making their home listening better than ever. The unique headband construction adds much-needed comfort when listening to music for a long time. Besides that, the company has added self-adjusting paddles and fully cushioned ear cups for prolonging the listening sessions.
There is a chance that you may be worried about its quality considering their price range, but they are enough for surprising their buyers with a moderately well-built construction. However, these headphones aren’t capable of stopping noise isolation, but you can’t complain at such a price.
Also Read: 10 Best Headphones between $500 and $1000
6.3 Philips X2HR Fidelio (best open back headphones under $200)
The Philips X2/27 Fidelio is a refreshed version of the X2 and has been the most impressive headset we’ve tested under $200. These headphones sport a sophisticated, durable design that enhances the music listening even more.
Backed by acoustic open-back architecture, these headphones offer pristine audio fidelity. Supplied with 50mm neodymium drivers, the X2HR offers exceptional dynamics and detailed music to the ears.
These headphones arrive with multi-layered diaphragm technology, offering a quality bass response. The design and bass at this price is value for money.
Best Open Back Headphone Under $100
7.1 Samson SR850 Reference (best for accurate sound reproduction)
The Samson SR850 is a professional headphone pair that you can buy for having awesome sound reproduction. It is a V-shaped open back product with a frequency response between 10 Hz and 30,000 Hz that ensure perfect bass and treble projection. On the other hand, their 32 Ohm impedance let the buyers use the headphone without any preamplifier.
On top of that, you can use them remotely due to their low impedance. There is a fixed wire terminated added in its 6.3 mm gold plated adapter and 3.5 mm TRS jack. Additionally, it can be used thanks to natural & secure adjusting headband comfortably. No doubt it is one of the most brilliant open-back headphones that you can enjoy for studio reference sound.
7.2. Sivga SV007 Over-Ear Headphones (best under $100)
Finding such quality headphones with open back design at such a price is almost an impossible task. It has a classical construction and known for producing exceptional sound quality.
The manufacturer has crafted SV007 with all-natural wood to feel pleasant while listening to the music. There is a pretty larger sound stage offered by these headphones along with minimum damage to the ear.
There are two ear cups added on this headphone for better comfort thanks to its 180˚ rotation feature. The availability of a stretchable headband, along with high-quality leather makes it flexible for fitting various head shapes. Overall, it is a brilliant choice that you can make if the budget is a little bit low.
7.3 Spadger CD990 (best open back headphones for mixing)
The Spadger CD990 is the best alternative to the SR850, considering the price range. These headphones come with large earpads, embossed in leather that offers ultra-comfort to your ears.
These are supplied with long detachable cables alongside a gold-plated screw tight plug and additional pair of earpads. Furthermore, the headbands can be adjusted to sit according to the size and shape of the user’s ear.
The CD990 weighs about 10 ounces, making these perfect for carrying around when traveling. These are Hi-RES studio certified, meaning you get the best professional sound experience with these headsets.
We have created this list about the best open back headphone after a tremendous testing process that has lasted more than 70 hours. We suggest you decide after identifying your needs and budget. All these products are high-quality headphones that you can buy without any worry. If you want to go for a once-in-a-lifetime purchase, the Sennheiser HD 800 S is the best premium buy. The Sivga SV007 is an affordable option when you have budget constraints. Good luck with your buying process.
1. What are the best headphones for music production open or closed back?
- There have been debates on which among the open back or closed-back headphones is better for music production purposes. Each of these headphones arrives with their pros and cons, but when considering music production — the closed-back headphones steal the show.
- Closed-back headphones offer more isolation, thus preventing audio from leaking when recording music. These headphones have this ability to allow musicians to hear the tiniest of details playing within the music. Their efficacy lies in restricting unnecessary external noise happening in the environment.
Whereas with the open-back headphones, these tend to be more suitable for mixing and mastering purposes. The audio leakage is significantly higher than the closed-back headsets.
2. What are semi-open back headphones?
Semi open back headphones are less closed-back, which do not entirely close the speaker elements. Since these allow air to pass between the chambers, these headphones tend to leak more sound and welcome in more noise. Sharing resemblance with open-back headphones, these are made to be plugged in less-crowded areas like home and fall short when commuting.
3. Is it important to have an amp to use open back headphones?
- The use of amp is another question that often leaves avid music listeners clueless. Several headphones work smoothly at 30 Ohm, while few headphones work from the mobile at 50 Ohm. Any headphone that comes with 50 Ohm or above can ooze out music at the best quality. If you are purchasing headphones with high impedance levels, using an amplifier is the best option.
4. What are the benefits of using open-back headphones?
The benefits of using an open back headphone are numerous over a closed-back headphone. The following are a few reasons to start using an open back headphone:
- Comfort: The primary reason to choose these headsets is the level of comfort they have to offer. Since these have an open exterior, the air passes freely to keep your ears comfortable for long listening sessions.
- More natural sound: These headphones offer a smooth flow of sound from the back of the set, thus providing listeners with a detailed and more lifelike sound experience.
- Environment-friendly: The best part about listening with open-back headphones is — the ability to keep up with the environment. Experts suggest that there has to be some connection with the ambiance, helping you learn about what’s happening around (traffic, honking, etc.)