Choosing the best over-ear wired headphones
Choosing the best over-ear wired headphones
Choosing the best over-ear wired headphones

The very best over-ear headphones right now

Despite the fact that traditional wired headphones are increasingly fading into the background in the list of preferences of most buyers, connoisseurs of good sound still prefer them. It is the wired connection to the signal source that guarantees maximum sound quality, but most models will require a good amplifier to reveal their potential.

We have collected in our rating the most interesting models that launched in 2023, the list is compiled by increasing price.

9. Moondrop JOKER

9. Moondrop JOKER

The principle is dynamic | Acoustic design – closed | Resistance – 68 Ohm | Connection – 3.5 mm

Pros – low price, light load for the amplifier, original design

Cons: at this price, none

Verdict – high-tech headphones at a minimal price

These headphones have drivers with a 50 mm composite diaphragm, including a metal dome and a flexible polymer suspension. It is driven by a neodymium magnetic system and a voice coil made of copper-plated aluminum wire. The acoustic volume is machined from brass and has an original asymmetrical shape, calculated by finite element analysis to prevent the occurrence of standing waves. The ear pads in the model are easily replaceable by the user, and the removable cable is equipped with 3.5 mm mini-jacks at both ends.

8. THIEAUDIO GHOST

8. THIEAUDIO GHOST

The principle is dynamic | Acoustic design – open | Resistance – 60 Ohm | Connection – 3.5 mm

Pros: low price, low resistance, interesting design

Cons – low sensitivity

Verdict – an interesting model, modified based on customer feedback

The model is distinguished by the use of original emitters of its own design. The dynamic drivers installed in the headphones are called Sapphire; they use a 40-mm diaphragm made by applying a metal-ceramic composite containing titanium to a polymer substrate. The 180 nanometer thick membrane has excellent stiffness and high internal damping. The magnetic emitter system is made of neodymium. The headphones have an open acoustic design; their low sensitivity of 91 dB suggests use in conjunction with a good stationary or portable amplifier.

7. HarmonicDyne Athena

7. HarmonicDyne Athena

The principle is dynamic | Acoustic design – semi-closed | Resistance – 34 Ohm | Connection – 3.5 mm

Pros – high-tech emitter, light load for the amplifier, low price

Cons – practically none

Verdict – headphones from China with excellent price-quality ratio

Unlike most composite diaphragms used in headphones, the 50-mm membranes in this model were obtained not by applying a layer of metal to a polymer substrate, but by creating a full-fledged alloy of metal and carbon-ceramic fibers. The voice coil is wound with the finest wire, and a powerful magnetic system ensures high sensitivity. The semi-closed acoustic design with slotted ports on the sides of the cups helps distribute airflow more evenly around the driver. The earcups are made of metal and plastic, the outer panel is made of especially durable glass. The cores in the cable are made of monocrystalline copper, the model weighs 320 grams.

6. Sivga Luan

6. Sivga Luan

The principle is dynamic | Acoustic design – open | Resistance – 38 Ohm | Connection – 3.5 mm

Pros – wooden cups, low resistance, very beautiful

Cons – wood requires careful care

Verdict – headphones with stunning design and airy sound

According to the traditions of the company, the ear cups are made of natural wood; depending on the color, two species are used – ash or zebrawood. The headband is made of aluminum, the headrest is made of leather and velor with lining. The dynamic drivers in the model have a composite diaphragm with a diameter of 50 mm with the inclusion of “organic” carbon fiber, the suspension has a nickel coating, and the magnetic system is made of a neodymium-iron-boron alloy.

5.HarmonicDyne Zeus Elite

5. HarmonicDyne Zeus Elite

The principle is dynamic | Acoustic design – open | Resistance – 32 Ohm | Connection – 4.4 mm/XLR 4 Pin

Pros – bio-cellulose diaphragm, light amplifier load, carrying case

Cons – slightly cool sound

Verdict – headphones with stunning design and dynamic sound

The headphones use a dynamic emitter of the company’s own design. It uses a 50mm composite diaphragm incorporating biocellulose with a long stroke. The voice coil is wound with the finest copper-plated aluminum wire, the cups are made of metal and zebrawood wood, and the inserts in the headband are made from it. The ear pads are covered with genuine leather and suede and filled with memory foam. The delivery set includes two balanced cables – with a 4.4 mm minijack and a four-pin XLR.

4. Audeze MM-100

4. Audeze MM-100

Principle – isodynamic (planar) | Acoustic design – open | Resistance – 18 Ohm | Connection – 6.35 mm

Pros – branded planar emitters, low price

Cons – you can still feel the weight

Verdict – planar headphones at a low price

The cups in the model are made of aluminum alloy, the guides are made of steel, and the headband has an elastic stop for fixing on the head. The weight is 385 grams, which is light for planar headphones, but not so light compared to others. The acoustic part includes proprietary planar drivers with an ultra-thin diaphragm with a diameter of 90 mm and a Fluxor magnetic grille made of N50 neodymium. A detachable 3.5mm cable connects to one cup, making it more comfortable to wear.

3. Sennheiser HD 660S2

3. Sennheiser HD 660S2

The principle is dynamic | Acoustic design – open | Resistance – 300 Ohm | Connection – 6.35 mm/4.4 mm

Pros – signature high-resolution sound, comfortable fit

Cons – requires a good amplifier

Verdict – classic never gets old

The new generation of classic headphones has an open acoustic design, but the main changes affected the branded drivers. They use a 38mm polymer diaphragm with a lightweight aluminum coil and a vented magnet system. Together, this made it possible to reduce the resonant frequency to 70 Hz, which had a beneficial effect on the reproduction of the low-frequency range. The nominal impedance of the headphones is 300 Ohms, which means they are used in conjunction with a good amplifier. The headphones come with two detachable cables, equipped with 6.35 mm and 4.4 mm jacks, as well as a case for storage and carrying.

2. Hifiman Audivina

2. Hifiman Audivina

Principle – isodynamic (planar) | Acoustic design – closed | Resistance – 20 Ohm | Connection – 6.35 mm / 3.5 mm / XLR 4 Pin

Pros: natural wood and leather, excellent workmanship

Cons: Expensive and heavy

Verdict – the best planar headphones of the season

The headphones have a closed acoustic design, a sensitivity of 97 dB and an impedance of 20 ohms makes them an acceptable load even for not the most powerful amplifiers. The headband is made of a combination of aluminum and genuine leather, and the ear pads are also covered with leather and filled with memory foam. The isodynamic radiator has an ultra-thin NEO Supernano membrane and a Stealth magnetic system that ensures optimal airflow. The earcups are made entirely of natural wood and varnished; the model weighs 470 grams. The headphones come with three cables with different connectors.

1. Erzetich Charybdis

1. Erzetich Charybdis

The principle is dynamic | Acoustic design – open | Resistance – 43 Ohm | Connection – XLR 4 Pin

Pros – aluminum, carbon fiber and amazing quality materials

Cons: price and considerable weight

Verdict – the most expensive dynamic headphones of the season

The company’s top model is handcrafted at the company’s own factory in Slovenia. It is equipped with isodynamic emitters of its own design, and the cups are machined from a solid aluminum billet. The model has an open acoustic design; a removable cable connects to four-pin connectors located outside the earcups. The headband is made of carbon fiber and genuine leather, the ear pads are offered in two finishes – velor and protein leather. The only negative is that the headphones weigh 720 grams.

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