If you’re a frequent music listener, you know the importance of a good pair of headphones. From comfort to noise quality, the right style will make all the difference to the everyday jogger or workday music lover.
When it comes to choosing the right pair, however, there are a variety of options to consider. So, before you pick out the cheap Bose headphones on Craigslist, take these important factors into consideration.
If you’re using your headphones frequently, you need a certain level of comfort. AskMen.com suggests, “… You want to make sure that they’re not going to snag on your hair or rest uncomfortably on the cartilage of your ears.” So, the first qualification to make is what will be comfortable for you. There are two main factors to consider.
- Shape: For some people, earbuds become uncomfortable after many hours of use. Be sure to consider the size of your ears, as this style doesn’t always cradle comfortably in every ear contour.
- Padding: Ear cup style headphones are considered some of the most comfortable options; the padding and cup style keep your ears from being pushed back, avoiding any discomfort during long term use.
Choosing the right style will be very important in your headphone decision process. What fits the needs of a runner may be very different than what works for someone who uses them for eight hours a day. There are a variety of styles to choose from, however be sure to try out the two main styles to get an idea of what will be best for you.
- Earbuds: Good for listeners on the go, such as travelers or joggers, these provide minimal material with good sound quality.
- Full size headphones: For some, earbuds don’t fit right or quickly become uncomfortable. Full size headphones come in a number of sub styles, including ear-pad, circumaural and over the ear.
Once you’ve take care of the comfort and style of your headphones, you want to consider different features that would be ideal for your headphone use. Take into account when and where you’ll be using them, as well as price; often times extra features, means more money.
- Noise cancelling: How do these work? Lifehacker.com explains, “Noise cancelling headphones sample the noise around you and play an inverted version of that sound in your ears, cancelling out the noise around you.” So, if you’re using headphone in heavily populated areas, such as the subway, these will be beneficial.
- Wireless: For active music listeners, wireless headphones are ideal. These usually utilize Bluetooth technology, and allow you to avoid tangled or bouncing wires. Unfortunately, these require frequent charging, which can be a pain if you need headphones in a pinch.
Choosing the right headphones is much more involved than picking up the first pair you see. If you’re using them on a daily basis you want to be sure to consider comfort and style, as well as pricing. And, don’t forget to try them on before buying to ensure you’re happy with the fit.