Headphones for acapella/classical

Discussion in 'Ask The Experts' started by headphonesbeginner, Jul 28, 2010.

  1. headphonesbeginner

    headphonesbeginner Casual Listener

    Jul 28, 2010
    Hi guys,

    I am looking for a pair of headphones (not earphones) for classical music/acapella stuff. Sometimes the acapella tracks have a lot of background noise (crowd and atmosphere noise - if possible I'd like to be able to hear the truest quality of voice that is possible given the recording quality).

    I am thinking about £40 but I really dont know if this is enough.

    From what I have read headphones give better sound quality than earphones but I am not sure.

    Any help would be most appreciated as there just seems to be so much choice!!

    Thanks! :)
  2. Shaun-HiFi

    Shaun-HiFi Administrator Staff Member

    Aug 30, 2008
    Headphones for acapella & classical music

    First of all, welcome to the forum!

    Headphones do generally give a more natural sound than in-ear headphones, although in-ears can offer very high levels of clarity and detail due to the type of speakers better quality earphones use (balanced armature drivers). For example earphones from Westone and Phonak are particularly good at offering a well balanced sound with lots of detail.

    The natural sound character of over-ear headphone seems mostly due to the fact the sound enters the ear normally, i.e. you don't have an earphone stuffed into your ear canal! ;)

    Headphone manufacturers often have a leaning towards a particular sound signature across their range. For example Sennheiser definitely have a leaning towards warmth over clarity, whereas the Audio-Technica Hi-Fi headphone range focus more on midrange detail (particularly good for classical, vocal and acoustic music). Grado is another brand that focuses on clarity, while also offering a warm tone. We're big Grado fans here.

    Another point to consider is comfort and fit. Some people find in-ear headphones uncomfortable, although this can be solved with Comply Foam ear tips (or even custom fitted sleeves). Some full size headphones are more comfortable than others, e.g. fully over ear designs are normally more comfortable as they do not press down on your ears.

    As far as price is concerned you do get what you pay for. You will hear significant improvements in sound quality upto about the £350 point. After that it becomes a case of diminishing returns, although there are some incredible high end headphones that really stand out (e.g. Beyerdynamic Tesla T1, Grado GS1000, etc).
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 28, 2010

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