Now help ME headphone!
June 14, 2022 9:38 AM   Subscribe

In the second headphone question of the day, I'm looking for two pairs of modestly priced over the ear headphones to keep plugged in to my electric piano and electronic drums.

I have a pair of Sennheiser HD555s always plugged into my computer audio interface and an old pair of Sony studio headphones attached to my guitar multi effects pedal. I'd like to get two modestly priced over the ear headphones that I can attach to my electric piano and electronic drums. The guitar and the computer are in my office, but the drums and the piano are elsewhere--so I'm constantly plugging and unplugging, realizing I don't have the right adaptor, and realizing the headphones are in the wrong place when I'm already sitting down to play. Plus, I'd prefer to have headphones in each place so my 8 year old doesn't help herself (and then misplace) my existing headphones!

In any event, the headphones should not be awful, but don't need to be extraordinary. They don't need to fold nicely or be terribly sturdy--they will just stay put. They don't need to be a major brand. They don't need to be the same headphones for both uses, though let me know if it's worthwhile at this price point to prioritize bass response for the drums. Is $50 reasonable to budget for each?

With that in mind, do you have any specific recommendations either of headphones or places to shop for them (Woot/Techbargains/B&H closeout, refurbs)?
posted by Admiral Haddock to Technology (4 answers total)
I think the Audio-Technica ATH-M series is good for the price and seems to be longer lasting than comparable options (Sony, Sennheiser) in my experience. I have destroyed a lot of headphones in my life.

I have the M40X, which are great, but maybe a little over your budget, but I imagine the M20X and M30X would also be fine (the big advantage of the M40X is that you can replace the cable as it just plugs in to the headphones with a little locking jack, which you cannot do on the lower priced models).
posted by ssg at 10:16 AM on June 14, 2022

How much isolation do you want?

If you just want simple, light, and good fidelity, I'd go with the old standby: Koss PortaPro (classic) for $38. The problem is not much isolation, and it looks a little flimsy.

If you need something with a bit more isolation, there's the cheap Koss UR20... as low as $20 on Amazon.

Something comparable, but probably with a bit more isolation, is the Tascam TH-02 Closed Back, also $20. Or you can get the slightly upgraded TH-MX-2 for $27.

If you need something with a bit more name recognition, there's Phllips SHP2500 also for $20.
posted by kschang at 10:25 AM on June 14, 2022

I have AKG K240 Mk2 headphones plugged into my synth, and they’re comfortable & sound good. They don’t over-emphasise bass, which is a good thing in my world. Maybe slightly over your budget, but not by much.
posted by rd45 at 10:49 AM on June 14, 2022

I have a pair of Audio Technica M20X that I like a lot. They are meant to be monitor headphones so they don't boost the bass like some models, and are very comfortable, if a bit on the bulky side. On sale at Amazon at the moment.
posted by indexy at 11:48 AM on June 14, 2022

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