Have you ever noticed your neighbors eyeballing you every time they see you? You might not understand why they are doing that because you seem like a law-abiding citizen. You look back on your actions and can’t remember anything that might have caused such a reaction. But in reality, you’ve been cranking up your amp and jamming out with volumes that could have handled large stages. It seems like a harmless behavior to us but in reality it could be disturbing the hell out of your neighbors or family. Nobody can tell you to stop practicing, but they can suggest buying headphones. It’s an easy solution that will enable you and your acquaintances to continue friendly and harmonious lives. If not, you’ll have yourself a tool that will help you listen to your sound closely and examine every single property in it. Today we’re going to introduce 10 best headphones for guitar amps that are available on the market right now. Keep on reading to find out which one is better for you or maybe take a look at some of them to satisfy your curiosity. Either way, it’s time to begin our journey!
Top 10 Best Headphones for Guitar Amp
Purchasing decent headphones and listening to the sound they emit is like wearing glasses for the first time when you have poor vision. I don’t know if you have ever experienced that but it’s like regaining appreciation for colors and textures all over again. Everything that seemed bland, looks vibrant and colorful now. The same thing happens when you wear headphones such as Audio-Technica ATH-M50x for the first time. Their playback sounds in the quality that you didn’t think existed. These fellas have an amazing level of clarity in all frequency ranges. Treble is there but it doesn’t bother you and basses sound quite defined, as well (no, it doesn’t feel like someone is hammering your eardrums, which is one of the most pleasant features). These headphones have proprietary 45mm large-aperture drivers that are combined with rare earth magnets and copper-clad aluminum wire voice coils. They also have a detachable cable so that you don’t have to change the headphones themselves if the cord breaks. The quality is fantastic here, but there are certain flaws that you should keep in mind. Regardless, we can still say that Audio-Technica ATH-M50x is one of the best headphones for guitar amps.
- Detachable cord
- Makes it comfortable to listen to higher volumes
- Well-presented treble, bass and mid-range
- If you wear glasses, you’ll feel discomfort after using them for a while
- The ear pads aren’t padded enough
If you can’t afford to pay more than 100 bucks for your headphones, then I have a wonderful option for you. It’s almost half the price of the previous model, yet the quality is still amazing. AKG K240 Studio offers more than one would expect for the price. It comes with a detachable cord, which means that you can easily change. The length of the cable that comes with it is 3 meters, but you could go for something that’s even longer. It has a semi-open design, which means that the sound is a bit more open compared to the closed-back models. The dynamic range seems quite nice – the frequencies are produced decently. One of the flaws that you might encounter is that the sound bleeds from the headphones. It could be inconvenient for recordings, but if you simply practice with it, I don’t think you’ll have any issues with that. AKG K240 Studio has 30 mm XXL transducers which are packed with patented Varimotion diaphragms in order to guarantee high quality sound (which, by the way, is more than wonderful). In short, these bad boys are probably the best option for the price.
- Semi-open design
- Replaceable wire
- Relatively affordable
- The sound bleeds more than one would like (could be inconvenient for recordings)
- The ear pads aren’t thick or comfortable enough
It could be crucial for any guitarist, beginner or professional, to purchase high-quality headphones. Nobody wants a pair that will make their sound dull, lifeless and destroy its dynamics. That’s why it’s important to get your hands on a studio quality model, such as Sennheiser HD 280 PRO. It will enable you to listen to the best version of your sound, discern every single component and find mistakes easily. It will help you recognize good qualities as well and, generally, assist you in the process of crafting your tone. These bad boys have wonderful noise cancelling capabilities, isolating you from the chaotic uproar of the outside world. They are foldable as well, making sure that they don’t take up too much of your precious space. Sennheiser HD 280 PRO might be extremely comfortable for you, but it might also be inconvenient. It has a different shape, which has the tendency to make you feel like your scalp is being squeezed (but, again, you might not have that issue). This fella does have its flaws, but trust me, they are worth it once you experience its sound! It’s certainly one of the best headphones for guitar amps.
- Even, balanced signal
- Amazing sound quality
- Cancels outside noise quite well
- Might not be comfortable on your head
- The cord is too heavy
If you don’t have experience with headphones, you might think that they are all the same if they are of a good quality. It’s easy to assume that you’ll receive similar responses from the majority of them, but that simply won’t be true. Some are more dynamic, while others have flatter response. Take KRK KNS 8400 as an example. It definitely belongs to the second category, which is something you should think about before making a purchase. Its bass response is quite rolled off, meaning that you might emphasize low-end too much if you’re crafting your tone via these headphones. They are audible, but they aren’t as punchy or accentuated as one might have liked. But that’s understandable, since these fellas were made for transparent performance. The brand wanted to create a device that would retain the maximum authenticity of the sound and we should all agree that they have succeeded in that. KRK KNS 8400 is a closed-back model with decent noise cancelling properties. It has a high-efficiency neodymium 40mm driver to make sure it doesn’t need much power. In brief, it’s a wonderful thing, you just have to figure out if it’s suitable for you or not.
- Clear sound
- Replaceable cable, ear and head pads
- Bass is quite rolled off (certain frequencies won’t be emphasized enough)
- The cord might be too long and get in the way
Moving onto another impressive model, this time we’re taking a look at Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro. It’s one of those headphones that you won’t want to take off once they find their way to your ears. They are extremely comfortable to wear, as they feature thick pads for your ears. The band is leathered and adjustable, making sure that they fit your head perfectly. These bad boys are created for those musicians, who spend a lot of time in the studio. They have the capability to reproduce your sound precisely. You’ll even be able to hear the details that you never thought would be audible. Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro has an open-back design, which means that it is more specious in terms of sound. Highs and low-end are extremely emphasized (a bit too much for some). It depends on your application and needs, but, generally, you can easily equalize those frequencies. The biggest issue with these is that they don’t come with a detachable cord – if the cable breaks, you won’t be able to swap it for something else. Other than that, these headphones are fantastic!
- Wonderful build quality
- Reproduces every detail of the sound
- Comfortable to wear
- The cable isn’t detachable
- The highs might be a bit too piercing
If noise isolation and superb sonic quality are your priorities, then Yamaha HPH-MT5W will be a perfect choice for you. It offers musicians the opportunity to scrutinize their sound closely, listen to all the details precisely and change whatever they want to improve. The build quality is great, especially considering the inner components that make it work so well. They have 40 mm custom drivers with CCAW voice coils that guarantee clarity and accuracy in terms of sonic reproduction. They also make sure that a wide range of frequencies (20Hz – 20 kHz) are transmitted to the user without straining your ears and making the whole process uncomfortable. The cord is rather long and detachable, which means you can easily change it if it breaks or wears out. HPH-MT5W is lightweight and comfortable to wear, but keep in mind that you’ll have to change the ear pads sooner or later. They aren’t as soft as one might have expected, so swap them for something else if you can. Considering the price and value of these fellas, it’s not hard to assume that they are one of the best headphones for guitar amp!
- Excellent sound isolation system
- Extremely clear, crisp and detailed
- Great quality
- The pads are a bit too stiff and can get damaged easily
We’ve already discovered such great models that you might be wondering what’s next. But let me assure you, we have a couple of wonderful options ahead of us. One of those is Shure SRH440. These are relatively affordable headphones for anyone who doesn’t want to spend more than a hundred bucks. Though they don’t have the best quality in terms of durability and construction, they have certain features that will convince you that they are worth a shot. These fellas offer impeccable performance, as they can reproduce balanced sound. Be it highs, mids or lows – all the bands are there, but none of them will be irritating to your ears. Moreover, the tone is rich and defined, making it possible to listen to all the details in your music. Shure SRH440 has a high level of noise isolations, which means the sound won’t bleed and you won’t hear outside noise either. These headphones have a detachable cord and foldable design that extend its convenience even further. Give them some time to break in and you’ll be left with excellent results.
- Detachable cord
- Foldable design
- Rich, defined sound
- Might break easily
- The cushions aren’t the best
If you don’t have a lot of money, but you still require high quality headphones for your guitar practices, then PreSonus HD7 will be a perfect match for you. It would be unfair to compare it to the models that are twice its price, so let’s don’t do that for the sake of objectivity. For the price, I don’t think you can go better than this. The sound quality is better than expected, as you’ll hear all the frequency ranges exactly where you want them to be. You’ll also be able to hear the details in your sound, which can be really helpful for developing your skills. These might not have “studio-quality” compared to some other options, but let’s face it, we’d be asking too much if we expected that here. PreSonus HD7 has a self-adjustable band that will tailor itself to your head as soon as you wear it. The cable runs from one side, making sure that cords don’t get in your way during practice. Mixing isn’t the most suitable action for these, but you can still do it if you want to. All in all, these headphones are a real bargain!
- An amazing value for money
- Decent sonic quality
- Comfortable to wear
- Doesn’t block noise perfectly
Continuing with another budget-friendly option, we should take a look at CAD Audio MH110. Again, they won’t be as good as more expensive options, but they can still do a decent job at being handy practice headphones. They have decent noise cancelling capabilities, even though they won’t eliminate it fully. They are lightweight, which makes up for the discomfort that is caused by uncomfortable ear pads. We’ve already seen that is an issue with more expensive models, as well, so I’m not surprised to see that problem in this price range either. You can always purchase another pair at a low cost. CAD Audio MH110 does a good job at replicating the sound the way it is. This means that it won’t boost or cut any frequencies – it will simply reproduce anything that you feed to it. That can be quite handy in practice, so we can’t really complain about that. I believe that this model is a perfect tool for those (mainly beginners and amateurs) who practice with their guitars and amps a lot.
- Decent sound
- Foldable design
- Noise isolation isn’t that great
- Not that comfortable
Anyone who’s familiar with guitars and effects pedals will recognize the name Behringer. Their products are always affordable and straight-forward – they never require any manual-reading or anything like that. They aren’t as good as more expensive apparatuses, but that’s only natural, isn’t it? The same goes with their over-ear headphones. HPS5000 is a comfortable model that delivers great performance. It can reproduce different frequency bands really well – in fact, it does so without breaking the bank. These headphones are fool-proof – you just plug them in with your amp and you’re good to go. The band is adjustable, which means you can alter it to your taste. Otherwise, your head will feel as if something is squeezing it, and that’s something none of us wants to experience. HPS5000 isn’t noise cancelling and it’s not claiming to be, so don’t expect it. We’d have the right to criticize the brand for that if they had included isolation somewhere in the description, but they have not. Overall, these are definitely one of the best headphones for guitar amps, especially for the price!
- Great build quality
- Decent sound
- Quite comfortable
- The cord isn’t sturdy enough to withstand years of usage
What makes up the best headphones for guitar amp?
Before we dive into our discussion, I want to get one thing out of the way. Any piece of gear requires taking a “personality test” prior to purchase. What I mean is that you should always determine what your needs are and what kind of device would suit them. In case of headphones, you should know whether you want a simple, high-quality pair or a studio quality model. You should also know if your amp supports headphones. And most importantly, you should figure out what budget you have and adjust your expectations to it. If you think that you can get a real studio quality sound for 20 bucks, you do need to do your research and educate yourself on the subject. Now that we have these factors out of the way, it’s time to concentrate on the features that the best headphones for guitar amp should have.
I’m not sure if that’s a word or not, but comfort is one of the most important features you should consider if you’re planning to spend hours with your headphones. You have to understand that your ears can get strained if the cushions aren’t soft enough. You should also know that your head might feel squashed if the band isn’t padded or it doesn’t have a proper size. It’s always better to go for a model that will enable you to change pads or adjust the size to your taste. This way you can make modifications without spending too much money (or having to buy a new pair).
It goes without saying that sound quality is the main factor which turns mediocre cons into the best headphones for guitar amp. Price isn’t directly indicative of this feature, but it still makes a difference. Generally, you want to go for something that will reproduce your sound in its authentic shape, reveal its details and playback all the frequencies well. You can find that in different price ranges, but higher-end models will have better performance. One more thing, don’t judge headphones from the sound you get the minute they arrive at your doorstep. Just like amp speakers, some of the models need some time to break in and reveal their “true” self. So don’t be impatient.
It’s only natural that we want our gear to last for a long time. Especially if you pay a lot of money, you want your headphones to withstand daily usage, don’t you? That’s why it’s important to check the build materials carefully. And remember, not all plastic is cheap and brittle.
This headline might confuse you, but bear with me and let me explain. Some of the design choices that you’ll encounter are closed-back, open-back and semi-open headphones (in other words, no, I’m not talking about their looks). There’s a huge difference between the performance of these three. It’s crucial to know what you need to figure out whether a closed-back design is a pro or con for you. If you record often, then it will be better to go for a closed-back version. The chances of bleeding are less here (though not guaranteed), and noise cancelling capabilities are better.
And finally, I’ll talk about this one briefly. There’s one simple truth: we don’t want to purchase new headphones every time a cable breaks. So it’s always more convenient to go for a model that has a detachable cord. But if the cable has a good quality (and you take good care of it), it might last you through a lifetime
Now it’s time for me to ask you the question: which are the best headphones for guitar amp for you? I did my best to present all the available options to you, now it’s your turn to do the reading and make a decision accordingly. I did also mention some of the features that a decent pair should have, but there might be other qualities that may be more important to you. Please, be patient and think about your needs carefully. More often than not, poor performance has nothing to do with the headphones themselves. It has to do with our inappropriate choices. I gave you some tips that will hopefully help you in the selection process. And the models we’ve included are definitely top picks on the market today. Determine your budget, list down your needs and perfect headphones will be a click-apart from you. Good luck!