Best Headphone Brands of 2019
The quality of the brand plays a huge role in the decision making process when buying headphones, or at least it should if you’re serious about ending up with a competitive product for your budget. The headphone marketplace is filled with highly reputable brands, which means you are spoilt for choice.
However, there are a few that have risen to the top because they consistently deliver competitive products that don’t sacrifice on the quality in order to cut corners. In this article you’ll encounter the top brands that you should start looking at when buying your next headphones. Some of these brands offer personal audio solutions in a bunch of different categories. Therefore, you’ll be able to find a model that matches your needs.
You may have noticed that we have featured Sennheiser headphones in many of our buying guides because of the sheer quality that they produce across the different categories. For example, we recommended the Sennheiser HD 700 Headphone as the top pick in the “Headphones for Metal and Rock Music” guide, and the Sennheiser PXC 550 as the best value pick in the “Audiophile Headphones of 2019” guide.
With Sennheiser products you can expect no compromise in quality – even when they are offering a competetive price point. However, for the most part expect to pay a bit more than the competition for Sennheiser headphones. They deliver industry leading quality and the price tag matches that.
You’ll notice that many of the Sennheiser over-ear headphones have large oval earcups that allows your ears to easily fit inside. Furthermore, the audio design typically has a very wide frequency range, which means you can enjoy audio that’s rich with detail and the bass is solid.
Bose is another industry leading brand that makes use of relatively new technology to give an added dimension to their offerings. For example, the Bose QuietControl 30 were chosen as the top pick in the “Bluetooth Earbuds in 2019” guide, in part because of the noise canceling feature that allows you to adjust the level of noise cancelation. Bose takes pride in offering industry leading features that add a lot of quality and functionality to their offerings.
The majority of Bose headphones deliver an audiophile grade music performance, but for the pleasure you’ll need to spend extra. Once you opt for Bose headphones it is hard to go back as the overall fidelity is impressive and an upgrade over the majority of the marketplace.
The Bose QuietComfort 35 is one of the top noise canceling headphones on the market and they were featured as the top pick in the “Most Comfortable Headphones of 2019” guide. They are extremely popular and you have probably seen people walking around with them in your local area.
Sony can be viewed as a jack of all trades in the electronics marketplace, but their headphones deserve some recognition for their execution. They have a mix of premium and budget offerings that delivers value for money. One of their premium offerings includes the Sony MDR-XB500, which we reviewed in the “Headphones Under $300” guide and rated it as the top pick.
You’ll notice that the majority of Sony headphones have a simple looking black design, but don’t let this fool you. The use of materials and execution of the comfort ergonomics is second to none. The overall audio quality is competitive, but is not of the same quality as the top tier brands mentioned in this article.
They cater to the audiophile and general consumer marketplaces, which means there is something for everyone. Take a look at their whole range of offerings to find the headphones that match your requirements that’s within your budget.
Founded in 1942 in Berlin, Germany, Beyerdynamic is regarded as a top-performer that only releases well executed headphones. Their visual design oozes with class and the comfortable large earcups that you find with their headphones means you’ll enjoy comfort too. Their headphones typically come with an audiophile grade level of audio that’s great for the music enthusiast. The only downside of their offerings is the lack of selection at the budget end of the scale.
One of their best offerings is the Beyerdynamic T5p 2nd Gen, which we reviewed in the “Closed Back Headphones of 2019” guide and gave them the top pick award. Furthermore, the Beyerdynamic DT 1770 PRO is another solid choice that was chosen as the top pick in the Studio Headphones guide. However, both options mentioned have a premium level price tag, which means you need to evaluate the features and figure out if the asking price is worth it for your needs.
The combination of maximum sound lucidity and comfortable design is what sets the brand apart from the majority of the competition. The audio experience is life-like and you will appreciate the premium use of materials that contributes to the durability of the design.
You’ll notice a number of AKG headphones sprinkled throughout the various headphones categories we have covered. That’s because they consistently deliver headphones that pay attention to detail and don’t sacrifice on the audio quality. Take a look at the AKG Pro Audio K702, which we selected as the top value pick in the “Open Back Headphones of 2019” guide. The value for money here is off the charts and you’ll struggle to find an alternative that’s a better performer for the same price.
AKG is another German based brand that has over half a century of solid reputation. Their headphones tend to have a bulky design that might be off-putting for some, but they are durable because the materials are carefully selected. Many of their headphones are used for studio recordings, but you’ll also find some general consumer grade options that have a more reasonable price tag.
The Audio-Technica brand is known for technological advancements from one of the more reputable Japanese companies out there. They are one of the few headphone brands in the world that give you the option to customize your headphones with a large degree of freedom.
One of the best budget headphones are the Audio-Technica ATH-M20x, which we selected as the top value pick in the “Over Ear Headphones Under $50” guide. Furthermore, the Audio-Technica ATH-M50 is another solid choice, which we also selected as the top value pick in the “Headphones Under $200” guide.
Audio-Technica is an award winning company that offers highly rated headphones across various categories due to the huge appreciation by the customer base. You’ll find suitable headphones for your needs regardless of your budget.
Shure is one of the favorite brands among professionals that are looking for something extra that the majority of the competition doesn’t provide. Shure headphones impress sound engineers and the toughest audiophiles out there, which means you can’t go wrong by investing in a pair of Shure headphones.
The 92 year old brand is also one of the more expensive out there, which means you’ll need to be ready to make a sizeable investment. They are the logical investment to make if you can appreciate the extra quality that is provided.
One of the flagship offerings are the Shure SRH1840 Professional headphones that were chosen as the top pick in the “Open Back Headphones of 2019” guide. Furthermore, the Shure SE215 headphones were selected as the top value pick in the “Most Durable Earbuds of 2019” guide.
Grado is based in Brooklyn, New York and is another audio company that caters to the audiophiles among you. All of their headphones offer excellent value for money as you can expect some of the best audio in the industry.
One of their best budget offering is the Grado SR60e, which we reviewed in the “Headphones Under $100” guide and selected it as the top overall pick. However, if you are looking for something that packs more punch then take a look at the Grado Prestige Series SR325e, which we selected as the top budget pick in the “Headphones Under $300” guide.
Grado headphones are known for the minimal level of distortion when compared to the competition. You can enjoy audio that is clean and accurate. Therefore, if you are the type of audio enthusiast that hates distortion then Grado headphones are for you.
V-MODA consistently delivers highly rated headphones that the marketplace has a huge appreciation for. With the majority of their offerings you can expect strong durability, great audio execution, a visually pleasing design, and comfort. However, they do tend to be on the bulky side, which means outdoor use is not the most practical.
We reviewed the V-MODA Crossfade M-100 in the “Headphones for Metal and Rock Music” and rated it as the top value pick. It’s one of the flagship offerings that offers excellent value for money. The award winning blueprint of the V-MODA headphones are one of the more reliable in the marketplace. Therefore, you can be confident that future V-MODA releases will be inline with what’s offered today.
Beats is a relatively new headphone brand, but they have made a big name for themselves in a short period of time. Part of the relatively straightforward success is the name that founded the company, rapper and producer Dr. Dre. However, their headphones are great in their own right due to the excellent overall audio fidelity, solid bass implementation, and great visual design. A large segment of Beats fans buy the headphones due to the visually pleasing aesthetics.
We reviewed the BeatsX Wireless In-Ear in the “Neckband and Behind the Neck Headphones” guide and rated it as the top pick. Their products are known for good value when you consider the asking price. However, they are not classed as one of the premium brands due to the fierce competition at the top end of the marketplace.
As you can see from the list above there are plenty of high quality brands that deliver a superb personal audio experience. They are all fighting for their place in the marketplace and the competition is fierce, which is great news for the consumer. The strength of the competition means companies are kept on their toes as they try to improve on the current features available, develop new features, and reduce the cost of their products.