Getting the right headphone can really change your experience with music. Just like what Dr. Dre likes to say;”people are not buying the right headphones.” Nowadays, there are various kinds of headphones available in the market; the prices vary as well. The majority of people tend to shop by brands instead of quality; which is one of the major problems. This is why it can be confusing for people to know which headphone is the best. Here is an average smart rating you can find on the Internet. Below is a graph which shows an average headphone quality of top 18 brands.
Now, we will look into more details so that we can decide who the real winner is and who gets which spots.
Fortunately, we have gathered reviews, features and specs from a research conducted by Time.com for more than 3,000 headphones and compiled a list of the best 18 headphone brands; 25% based on specs and features (noise cancelling, frequency, sensitivity, and so on) and expert reviews and 75% based on expert reviews.
The results might surprise you; so grab a cup of coffee and make sure you are comfortable because this is going to take some time.
Plantronics, Beats by Dre and Skullcandy
Plantronics got 57, Beats by Dre got 58 and Skullcandy got 62. Each brand has their share of decent products such as the Beats by Dre Solo HD and Skullcandy Navigator. These two products are similar in terms of style and they reduce ambient noise nicely. However, reviews said that the Beats by Dre Solo HD has better impedance even though it tends to require more power to produce higher volumes. As an addition, these two products have the same frequency response. Even though each of these three brands has their own decent products, their average products aren’t worth your money.
Koss, Creative and Philips
Koss got the score of 68, Creative got 68 and Philips got 72. After a little bit of research, we think that these brands offer solid products at reasonable prices. However, there is a problem; they also offer a lot of less reasonable, less solid products, which is why their scores are not that great. Nevertheless, if you are a gambler, you might be thrilled when you decide to buy one of their products from the store. On the other hand, if you are looking for something that is more high quality and satisfying, their products aren’t worth the risk.
Bose, Apple, and Panasonic
Bose managed to get 73, Apple got 74 and Panasonic got 74. Bose and Apple are very different from Creative and Philips; they are using the ‘less is more’ headphone strategy. This means that they only market three or four products with high prices. However, their products are relatively decent. For example, if you are looking for headphones that can cancel noise nicely, QuietComfort 15s by Bose is a great fit. It has high impedance and it needs more power to produce higher volumes. However, it is best to use amps when you are using very high impedance headphones. The reason Bose didn’t manage to get a higher score is because their other products received mixed reviews and they always set high prices for their products. When Apple products such as the new EarPods got great reviews, jokes started appearing in the headphone industry. That being said, their other products are quite great.
Audio-Technica, JVC and Sennheiser
Audio-Technica got the score of 74, JVC got 75 and Sennheiser got 78. As stated above, buying products of Creative and Philips is a gamble. However, buying products of one of these brands isn’t like that; it is a responsible risk. Even though none of the three brands are 100% great, each has its own distinctive strengths. Audio-Technica produces the best studio headphones in the market, and the prices are often below $150. JVC makes the best cheap earbuds available in the market; they are high quality and relatively cheaper than headphones from other brands. Sennheiser’s products have gotten a lot of praises from DJs and audiophiles worldwide, which makes it reasonable to buy one of their products.
AKG, Sony and Pioneer
AKG managed to get the score of 79, Sony got 80 and Pioneer got 83. These three brands managed to get a relatively high score in this review. This is because both Pioneer and AKG consistently make high-quality stellar headphones for audio technicians and DJs worldwide. As an addition, their prices are reasonable. On the other hand, you might be surprised to find Sony’s great score. Sony’s biggest superiority is its consistency of quality. Sony offers hundreds of products in various color and style; the prices vary too. This variation makes it easy for people to find what they want, not to mention that the quality of their products is always great.
Klipsch, Grado and Shure
Now these three brands are the top three brands in this review. Klipsch managed to get the score of 84, Grado got 89 and Shure got the highest score of them all; 90. Sure, they are really pricey. However, their headphones are reliable, and they have outstanding performances and amazing reviews by the professionals and experts in the market. If you do not want to spend too much on headphones and if you are satisfied with fairly good-quality products, something from JVC or Sony would be fine. However, if you are looking to discover a whole new level of audio enjoyment should consider buying something from these three brands because they are amazing.
That was a brief review of the top 18 headphone brands in the market. As surprising as it can be, people who are new to the headphone industry might not know some of the brands mentioned above. The main thing you should really think of when you are looking for the right headphones is why do you need it and how satisfied would you be. If products by Dr. Dre satisfy you, then why would you buy Shure products? All of it depends on the needs of each person. For example, the Bose QuietComfort 15 has strengths that are best for music with bass, while Apple Earpods has an open-air system that can bring the best of classical and jazz music. If you want to buy an expensive, high-quality product from the top brands, consider everything and make sure you have done research before so that you wouldn’t regret it; even though products from the top brands won’t disappoint anyone who is looking for quality.