Headphone Buying Guide: Open vs. Closed Headphones
Open vs. Closed Headphones
Open Design Headphones
- Open Headphones are designed to allow some outside noise to mix with the headphones' output.
- Some listeners prefer the open natural sound (think listening to speakers in a room) rather than the isolated sound of closed headphones.
- Open headphones may also boost sound clarity depending on the type of music you are listening to.
- In general, open headphones are more comfortable with lighter pressure on the ear area.
- Open headphones do allow sound to leak out, therefore people around you may be able to hear what you are listening to.
Grado SR80i headphones are an example of open headphones.
Closed Design Headphones
- Closed Headphones are designed to isolate your ears from outside noise.
- This isolation is useful for DJs, critical listening (ie. music production), and "zoning out".
- Closed headphones generally provide a heavier bass sound.
- Commuters who use headphones may prefer closed headphones because outside listeners will not be able to hear your music.