Best Student Headphones at HeadRoom
The top headphones we recommended for students have several characteristics: They block ambient noises to allow concentration in loud places; by same token, they avoid dreaded headphone 'leakage' so you won't disturb roomies or raise the hackles of the librarian. The selected headphones will be portable and durably built to withstand many trips in a backpack. And, of course, they must be well-priced so that you don't have to survive school eating Ramen (Mac & Cheese is soooo much better).
We need to say right off the bat that if you want to love and enjoy music for the rest of your life, please listen to your headphones at safe volumes. Low-quality headphones with poorly designed drivers distort the jagged signal peaks in the uppers mids / treble frequencies, making the sound harsh and potentially damaging to the ears. The sweet gear we've chosen below will allow intense music enjoyment without turning up overly loud just to hear clearly.
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Affordable Headphone Solutions For Students
In-ear headphones are extremely compact and can offer excellent sound quality, but they can be a little troublesome if you need to hear your surroundings. Nonetheless, they can make truly great headphones for blocking noise while studying without any audio leakage worries. Our favorite low-cost in-ears around $50 are the well-balanced Sennheiser CX 300 II. And the unique 'clip-on', open-earpiece style of the Koss KSC-75 remains a student's best-sounding bargain in the entire headphone world priced under $20 bucks!
In 'over-the-ear' headphones, the Sennheiser HD201 simply can not be bettered at the price. In a more full-size design, the Superlux HD668B is a sonic barnstorm of rich potent bass and incredibly clean tone. For listeners seeking a detailed treble sound with great dialogue/speech intelligibility for watching DVD movies or interpreting audio on computers, the 'on-ear' beyerdynamic DT235 headphones are worth every penny at $59 bucksand offer very comfortable, basic looks that belie great sound quality. Bassheads, rockers, and urban music lovers will get a kick out of the Sony MDR-XB500 with its huge bass, plush earpad comfort, and hella throwback looks.
'Mid-Priced' Headphones with High-Value for Students
We'll tempt music lovers with a few recommendations that could make a worthwhile investment for a successful long-term academic listening career. Etymotic Research is the originator of in-ear headphones and their Etymotic HF5 headphones are phenomenally detailed in the mids/ highs; try the HF3 model if also needing an iPhone/iPad mic. With more fun low bass than the Etys, the Shure SE215 and SE315 have detachable cords which can be upgraded to iPhone or smartphone mic cables if desired. A neat design for those looking to have a small compact 'on-ear' headphone to throw in the backpack, the hip Noontec Zoro is an extremely good-sounding, well-built headphone that folds for transport. Amongst the very best 'under-$99' closed cans anywhere is the Shure SRH440 offering truly stunning sonic performance; these are an ideal dorm room choice for sound quality afficionados.
The longest-lived model in the category, the classic Sennheiser 280 Pro is a 'full size' closed headphone which folds for transport/storage, and is amongst the most renown cans of this type due to its flat tonality and solid noise-blocking isolation ability. It's still a #1 choice for location recordists, film audio, and TV camera mic monitoring. For much more musical and fully dynamic acoustics, the wonderful Audio Technica M50 slays other headphones anywhere near its $159 price, also fully collapses for transit, and works well directly from iPod or iPad. But if 'open' full size headphones are your thing and isolation is not required, the German-engineered Sennheiser HD518 has an extremely accurate, engaging and lively sound certain to reveal every nuance within your music; its one of our favorite affordable headphones ever from Sennheiser.
Lastly, all these headphones will be significantly improved with a good headphone amp. Many headphone amps are battery powered, and many amps also have an internal DAC (digital to analog converter) for use with laptops and computers. Browse our selection of headphone amp and contact our sales staff for personalized advice on what amp may be good for you.