The first tool of a beginner DJ are the headphones. Our recommendations for the best DJ headphones in the market and what to look for when you buy one, you will find here.
The most important and useful equipment for a DJ, no matter the preferable genre of music, is the headphones. For many DJ’s this is the only tool they carry everywhere they play, along with their music library (laptop, cd’s, usb).
What is the difference between Dj and studio headphones and what features seperates them
When you are playing music and mixing tracks, you do not need to hear a full dynamic range of a song. Dj quality headphones offer dynamic Kick, Snare and HiHat which are the essential to guide you to a perfect and smooth mix. Studio headphones from the other hand offer better sound quality and flat frequency response.
Second feature that separates them is the headphone type. “Closed-back” are most common for loud environments and therefor for djing.”Open-back” might lack at isolation but offer better sound quality for the same price range.
All our picks for the best DJ headphones have this feature. There are dozens of great options out there, however we picked only the five we believe are the best according to all features, price tag, reviews and personal experience.
What characteristics are important when you are looking for dj headphones
- Headphone type: “Closed-back” – Keep in mind the dj environment is extremely noisy. So it is very important that the pair of headphones better to be “closed-back” so that it will reduce the unwanted noises around you and hear the bass loud and clear. “Open-back” or “over-ear” type of headphones do no block the background noises the same well. There are exceptions of course of open type pairs with very good isolation.
- Durability: You will spend countless hours with your headphones and no matter how much you take care of them, eventually you will drop them, crushed them against other tools in your backpack, the cable will get wrapped around it and drinks might cover them some day. Studio headphones can be treated differently but when you are looking for DJ headphones a high durable pair is important.
- Rotatable: You need folding headphones for two reasons. First because if they are not rotable are much more fragile and second, rotable headphones are easier to pack and transfer them everywhere you go.
- Sound quality (Loudness/Bass): Since we are not buying headphones for recording and studio work we do not care for a “flat” sound. We need to hear loud&clear the bass/kick and high frequencies of the song. To get that we want large drivers to deliver bass frequencies more efficiently and with less distortion. For that purpose, drivers around 40mm or larger are perfect fit.
- Comfort: Last but not least thing to concern when you buy headphones for DJing, is the comfort they provide. For sure in a studio you will spent more non-stop hours wearing them. But comfort ear-pads and headband should effect your decision for any kind of headphones.
5 BEST DJ HEADPHONES
The most popular and worn pair of headphones by DJ’s all over the world. Pioneer HDJ 2000 is a professional closed-back hi-end pair, built to take abuse.
It has a very comfortable fit, the earcups rotate in every possible way, the headband is designed for stretching and is for sure a product that will last over time and hardship. Additional HDJ-2000’s cables and ear pads are replaceable which makes those headphones a long-term investment.
The frequency range is at 5Hz-30KHz which is ideally for djing, but not the best choice for studios. Sound quality is superb, with deep and punchy bass and clear mids and highs. And last, the closed-back type offers great isolation to ambient sounds and let you to totally concentrate on mixing.
conclusion: You cannot go wrong with Pioneer. HDJ-2000 has everything you need, from sound quality to durability. They are on the top of our list, although they are a bit expensive but they worth every penny and i highly recommend them. If you have the budget to spend, go for it. You can also go for the smaller sibling, Pioneer HDJ 1500 for a reduce of budget.
Dj’s who use it: Richie Hawtin, Moby, James Zabiela, Calvin Harris
2.SENNHEISER HD 25-1 II
Another well-known and worn by many DJ’s pair of headphone. Especially artists of Techno and Deep House music preference will say that this is the probably one of the best DJ headphones they currently use. The superb reviews and support by many pro djs leaves no place to doubt the quality of these headphones.
This “on-ear” style might trick you into believing that they cannot offer good isolation, but the thing is that HD 25-1 II block out ambient sounds extremely well. So well actually that you will see it worn by people of different professions and not just DJ’s.
The sound quality is great, with clear, punchy bass and extended highs. This pair in nearly indestructible with flexible ear-cups which allows you to easily cover the one ear when you are mixing. Another plus of HD 25-1 II is that is extremely light weight and small, it is actually one of the lightest pro pairs in the market. A large number of satisfied users give excellent rating for a headphone that will probably last forever.
conclusion: Sennheiser HD 25-1 II is the biggest competitor of Pioneer HDJ-2000 for the title of the best DJ headphones. Like Pioneer’s model, the HD 25-1 II is ideally pair of headphones for djing. With superb sound quality, suitable for any professional dj. From the one hand you have the notable well-known quality of Pioneer and from the other hand, a unique design and high portable pair to transfer it with an incredible easiness.
Dj’s who use it: Nina Kraviz, Guy J, Tale of us, Avicii, Minilogue
3.V-MODA CROSSFADE M-100
Generally i wouldn’t put “lifestyle” headphones in a list with the best dj headphones, but the award winning V-MODA crossfade is an excellent pair for djing. The Italian manufacture which introduced to us a few years ago create a complete pair for professional DJ’s.
Except the nice and filled look, M-100 is very comfortable, have an excellent built and is highly durable. This is due to the flex-steel headphone band which allows you to twist them without causing any long term damage.
The 50mm dual diaphragm drivers produce powerful sound with clean and deep bass and ultra extended highs. In addition to the above, the comfortable foam ear-pads offer superb isolation blocking unwanted background sounds.
conclusion: For those who are looking for quality and design, V-MODA crossfade M-100 is a very good option. It has already collect thousands of great reviews on Amazon store and furthermore V-MODA gives small variety of color collection (mate black metal, white-silver, shadow and phantom chrome) to pick on your “likes”. It comes with a hard case to keep it safe from transporting and any other hardship.
Dj’s who use it: Pete Tong, Paul Van Dyk, Tiesto, Nicky Romero
4.BEYERDYNAMIC DT 1350
We are used to see Beyerdynamic headphones in some of the top quality recording studios. DT 1350 is a pair for dj’s as well and it is pretty amazing. All these years of headphone production from Beyerdynamic leaves no room to doubt their build and sound quality.
With this closed back type of headphone with 129dB maximum SPL you can easily hear your music over the crowd. DT 1350 has an extraordinary bass response and clear the mids and highs. It is a superb headphone for djing.
The overall appearance looks similar to Sennheiser HD 25-1, with small ear-cups but very good to block out ambient sound. Ear-pads are also rotatable and the headband is very flexible making them very durable. Similar to HD-25 they are also light weight for easy transportation. It is also great option for music with emphasis on bass sounds.
conclusion: The Tesla technology offer extremely low levels of distortion, the build is high quality, the pair is portable, very durable and i can’t find any reason not to take this headphone seriously. I would personally add that i love the design and look of DT 1350. You wouldn’t be disappointed if you decide to purchase it, it’s perfect.
5.SENNHEISER HD8 DJ
The second Sennheiser model in our list for the best dj headphones, and the most expensive one. The customer reviews are nearly perfect, making it one of the top rated headphones, with users praising it’s comfort, sound and durability. It is ideal headphone for djing and for recording studios.
Sennheiser HD8 is a closed back type offering amazing isolation from ambient sounds, and great sound quality with maximum SPL capacity at 115dB. You will hear the bass and highs amazingly well to help you perform superb beat-matching and mixing.
The top feature of HDJ 8 DJ is it’s durability, and i honestly believe that this pair can last for years and that’s because of the metal around the ear-cups, metal pivot at the joint and the flexible headband. The package also includes a pair of extra velour ear-pads and a premium hard case for transfer.
conclusion: At first sight the design and looks of Sennheiser HD8 along with it’s high price range, will probably leave you with a doubt. However, Sennheiser HD8 DJ is very comfortable and amazing durable pair which is quite important for dj’s who count dozens of hours djing per month.
Dj’s who use it: Dj Pierre, Bob Sinclair, Thomas Gold
Do not hesitate to post your comments and questions for the DJ headphones. What you wish to buy? How much you can spend? Me and my team would be happy to help!
Have fun shopping…