Top 5 Best Headphones for Music in 2023

Classical music is one of the genres with a great deal of nuances, thus the headphones you purchase should be able to faithfully reproduce these nuances. However, different genres of music have different typical EQ curves, thus your electronic music-optimized bass-heavy headphones will not suffice for classical music.

Choosing the best headphones for classical music is not as straightforward as purchasing the most costly set available. Here is a list of some of the best headphones you can get for the greatest classical music listening experience, along with some considerations.

List of the 5 Best Headphones for Listening to Musics in 2023

5. The world’s best headphones for classical music are the SENNHEISER HD 660S.

 5. The world's best headphones for classical music are the SENNHEISER HD 660S.

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Sennheiser has made a name for itself in the headphone industry, manufacturing some of the best headphones on the market. In addition, they create durable goods. For instance, the original Sennheiser HD 600 was released in 1997 and is still available today.

The HD 660S is the renowned HD 650’s successor. In short, the HD 660S is superior to the HD 650 in every respect. The HD 650 was for many years “the standard” / “the king” of headphones, thus this is not a little statement.

In terms of soundstage, these headphones have a pretty flat midrange. The bass is robust, but it is also quite natural. The high frequencies are effectively subdued to prevent hearing fatigue.

As is customary for the HD600 series, the build quality and design are exceptional. The headphones are made primarily of plastic, but the quality is excellent. The aluminum headphone grills and headband adjustment bands give the headphones a great finish.

4. Beyerdynamic DT 880 Headphone for Classical Music

 4. Beyerdynamic DT 880 Headphone for Classical Music

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Beyerdynamic is another renowned brand that offers Sennheiser some competition. The DT 880 is considerably less expensive than the Sennheiser HD 6XX, yet its performance is comparable.

These headphones have a well-balanced sound, with a pleasant middle that is transparent and rich in detail. They lack the most powerful bass, which is acceptable for classical music. The high frequencies are slightly amplified.

The headband is non-removable and well-padded, and the ear cups are padded and covered in plush velour, as is the case with the majority of Beyerdynamic’s headphones. The headphones weigh only 0.65 pounds, which contributes to their comfort. It is acceptable that they lack the quality all-metal construction of certain other Beyerdynamic headphones in order to maintain an affordable price.

The DT 880 are semi-open headphones that permit ambient noise and sound leakage while also providing some isolation. Please consider purchasing a headphone amplifier if you do not already own one if the impedance is 250 ohms.

3. Philips SHP9500 Musical Headphones

 3. Philips SHP9500 Musical Headphones

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Please be aware that the Philips SHP9500 is an older model that has been discontinued. This section pertains to the new Philips SHP9500, which has a 5ft cord (instead of a 10ft wire) and no carrying case.

The Philips SHP9500 is lightweight due to the considerable usage of plastic, while the earcups and headband are made of metal. Despite being made primarily of plastic, they feel sturdy. The headband and earcups are covered with a highly breathable fabric, which increases comfort.

For the price, the sonic quality is remarkable. The middle is exceptionally distinct, the bass sounds strong but is not overpowering, and the treble is slightly bright. Furthermore, the 32 Ohm impedance of these headphones eliminates the need for an amplifier.

2. AKG K702 Headphones for Listing to Music

 2. AKG K702 Headphones for Listing to Music

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The AKG K702 is constructed from a mixture of plastic, metal, and leather. Giving the impression of durability and high quality. Additionally, the earcups and cord are detachable, allowing for quick customization or replacement in the event of an accident.

AKG has patented its driver technology, dubbed Varimotion, a two-layer diaphragm that is highly responsive and promises an enhanced high-frequency range and improved low-frequency performance. The AKG K702 is a very neutral pair of headphones. The bass is present but does not steal the show, the midrange is quite transparent and rich in detail, and the treble, despite being somewhat bright, is also highly distinct.

Similar to all other open-back headphones, the AKG K702 features poor noise isolation and a significant amount of sound leakage. Again, a spacious soundstage with excellent instrument separation. With 62 Ohms of impedance, you should be alright without an amplifier.

1. Audio-Technica ATH-M40x – The most effective closed-back headphones for classical music

 1. Audio-Technica ATH-M40x – The most effective closed-back headphones for classical music

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The ATH-M series is the most popular pair of headphones with a closed back. The ATH-M50x features larger drivers, which result in more powerful bass. After 5KHz, the ATH-performance M30x’s degrades. The ATH-M40x excels at reproducing classical music.

These are unexpectedly well-balanced and perform well in the midrange, which is uncommon in this price category. In addition, an amplifier is unnecessary because the impedance is 35 Ohms.

Despite having closed headphones with a narrower soundstage and overall tone that is significantly less realistic. Let’s look on the positive side: they block outside noise and do not leak sound. This is ideal for usage outside the house or workplace.

The critical frequency range is 250 Hz to 2 kHz

Classical music sounds are mostly generated by acoustic instruments and vocals, with minimal or no post-production. Certainly there is bass from instruments such as the bass drums and tuba, but we prefer headphones with a relatively neutral sound character (monitor headphones work great).

Therefore, you should avoid bass- or treble-heavy headphones, which might be problematic in modern times.

Why are open-back headphones favored?

The most common and readily available headphones on the market are closed-back models. Nevertheless, open-back headphones are particularly suited for classical music.

Due to the absence of solid, enclosed cups, sound can escape in all directions rather than being reflected within the cup, resulting in a broader soundstage and more accurate sound reproduction.

Open-back headphones are readily identifiable. Simply search for a mesh in the earcups, and in some cases you may even be able to see the internals. Due to their lack of isolation, open-back headphones are not advised for public settings or frequent commuters.

Do not overlook your comfort.

Since classical works are not as brief as contemporary music, you will spend between 15 and 40 minutes every piece. Therefore, comfort is paramount in your selection.

The enhanced airflow of open-back headphones increases the breathability of your skin, allowing you to wear them for longer periods of time.

Conclusion: Best headphones for classical music

These headphones are all fine for listening to classical music at home or in the workplace, but some require an amplifier and may be uncomfortable when worn outdoors in the sun. Additionally, open-back headphones leak sound, so you will bother others. However, keep in mind that there are no perfect headphones available.

Let us know what your favorite classical composition is, and feel free to leave any questions or comments below.

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