Best Headphones For EDM
All EDM is the same...any headphones will do.
Yea that's not true at all, but it's what you see when you go to other websites that recommend which headphones are the best to get for EDM. That's why we decided to do the research, ask the questions, and dig into what makes this style of music different, and what specializations you should look for in a good pair of cans to get the best quality experience.
Now if you've landed here you probably know what this kind of music is already, but for the kids who are searching the web looking for headphones to enjoy this new music you've heard, let us enlighten you. EDM stands for Electronic Dance Music, it started in the 80's in Chicago, and has continued to evolve today. We'll get into more of that later, but for now that should get you started.
Main Quality of EDM Headphones
Electronic Dance Music is bass heavy, and usually focuses on a mixture of steady beats made by electronics. When it started in the 80's it was referred to as "house" music and followed the fall of disco. It's qualities were a 4 to the floor style, which are a steady, uniformly accented beat in 4/4 time in which the bass drum is hit on every beat (1, 2, 3, 4) in common time.
This type of music has stuck to it's roots, and even though the sub-genres have splintered, the 4 on the floor style is still the foundation for this type of music.
Knowing this, we need to focus on headphones that can pick up on that bass and deliver it with a clean sound, without drowning out the rest of the instrumentals.
Sub-Genres That Falls Under EDM
Contrary to what most people think (even the people who've been in the electronic music game for a while) EDM is not it's own new sub-genre of Electronic Dance Music! Everything that most people view as dubstep, disco, house, etc. all falls under EDM.
V-Moda Crossfade LP2
We'll start off with a pair of budget cans, just in case you're not in a position to drop close to $300 on a quality pair. Even if these are the "budget" version of the best EDM headphones, they're still an amazing pair of cans for sure. They just have a tiny bit more to be desired compared to the -100 version.
Since this music focuses on the 4-on-the-floor beat as a base with heavy bass, it only seems natural to include this set of phones that can melt your skull with a 50mm driver. The bass is a bit out of balance with these compared to other headphones though, which if you like face melting bass, then these are the perfect fit!
The mids certainly come across more clear than the bass. And the closed back style helps the natural acoustics without letting any sound leak.
The highs come sailing in nice and smooth, which we weren't expecting from the looks of these. When you look at them, with the metal plates and exposed screws, you think you're going to get overly bright highs with a bit of distortion in the mids. We were pleasantly surprised though! When the drop hits you're still able to clearly take in the upper ranges.
The V-Moda Crossfade, like most other headphone brands, boasts some of the most incredible tech to help with comfort, but does it really help? Well they let your ears rest in a pair of BLISS memory foam ear pads that are wrapped in kevlar.
Why are they wrapped in kevlar? We don't know...
And thankfully the memory foam is spread out across the headband as well. Because there's nothing worse than feeling like you have a lead pipe clamping down on your dome while you're working or enjoying music.
One of the greatest features of these cans is their durability! They've passed multiple drop tests (we didn't want to test that ourselves), and have the build quality to stand up to some pretty serious abuse.
They also come with a pretty sweet carrying case that's also wrapped in kevlar. Still not sure what that's about. Luckily they aren't pushing the envelope with too many other features like uber long distance bluetooth or bass boosting. These headphones have and extraordinary amount of bass already.
Most of the money was put into quality sound and durability. Not features.
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If you haven't noticed yet, the ATH are the most well balanced and versatile headphones around. So it's no surprise that EDM heads like to use these as a budget friendly way to rave with quality.
The ATH-M50x are one of the most popular headphones for ANY type of music thanks to the amazing balance of quality throughout all ranges. However, we're looking at these with an objective eye skewed towards low ranges of bass and the upper highs since that's what you'll be using them for.
With 45mm drivers they're only a small step behind the Crossfades when it comes to power output, but they more than make up for it with less muddy bass. The lows are deep and rumbling with enough sensitivity to allow the highs to soar at the same time without too much distortion. And the mids are in a somewhat neutral position, slightly leaning more toward the upper range.
These aren't as bassy as other headphones, but if you're focused on sound quality rather than pounding bass, these are the cans for you.
In our personal opinion, the headband is the true sign of all around comfort, but just because you pass that test doesn't mean they're great. The headband is really comfortable on these, but the ear cups will need to be replaced if you're going to listen to them for a lengthy amount of time.
And if you need to wear glasses while listening, you need to just go ahead and get the extra ear cups.
As for the build quality though, these are as solid as they come! They're not made out of metal, but every facet of them is sturdy and well put together without being too heavy.
You get the basic 90 degree swivel ear cups, sound buttons on the cable, and optional wireless play. In reality though they've done a good enough job that there's no need to fancy it up with too many bells and whistles.
A great buy for a broad spectrum of music!
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Beyerdynamic DT880 Pro 250 OHMs
Since going full open back headphones would be a bad choice for Electronic Music, we decided that the semi open back from Beyerdynamic would provide some variety, while keeping it practical for most listeners. Open back headphones give a bit more life to your listening experience because you feel like the music is actually coming from where you're listening instead of being projected into your ears. In our opinion, you get a greater level of quality connection with open back headphones.
It can be a little risky using open back headphones in a crowded place, but when you get the correct mix of ambient noise and silence the sound feels like it's emanating from the room itself. Since these headphones are only semi open back, that balance is a bit easier to achieve!
And even with 250 ohms you can use these high quality cans with your iphone, and no need for a driver.
One thing that's a hefty downfall with these headphones is the lack of deep thumping bass. Open backs generally aren't known for having the best bass in the world, but these were a bit more anemic than usual. The highs and mids performed spectacularly and were very well balanced, but that bass just needs a bit more of a kick.
This is the saving grace of these cans. They are just as plush and comfortable as they look!
Beyerdynamic sticks with the circular ear cup design though, even though we all know that (most of our ears) our ears are oval shaped. This makes them a bit tough to work with if you have oddly shaped ears, or have had surgery that might have displaced them a tad like I did.
However, over all these are some of the most comfortable headphones you'll ever wear.
Besides the modified open back style, these really are about as basic as they come. They do have a noise isolation feature, but like most headphones it's not worth paying more than $15 extra for. What they really seemed to have sank most of their money into is the comfort level and modified open back style.
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When it comes to combining tech with a love for audio, Sennheiser is in a league of their own.
The price points that they're able to create for their customers is extraordinary as well. With most of their headphones you would think you'd be spending $300+ for most of their set ups. If you're looking for features, quality, and style then you belong in this family!
These aren't as bassy as the Crossfades or ATH cans, but they deliver a solid thump. Thanks to their EAR tech (we'll talk about that later) they also have a tremendous grip on sound stage, which gives a slight feeling of open back headphones, but with the convenience of closed back passive noise isolation.
The mids are really where these headphones shine with EDM. The bass may not melt your ears, the highs might not be soaring, but man the mids come in straight and smooth every time! And what's better is that you don't need a driver with these bad boys either. Of course it won't be the best sound quality ever if you're driving straight from an iphone, but it's always nice to know the option is there.
These are pretty amazing for closed back headphones when it comes to ear comfort. You can wear them for hours without your ears starting to sweat, or having them feel like a vice on your head. The headband also does a great job of providing padding and not going soft when you need it.
The EAR (Ergonomic Acoustic Refinement) tech is great at driving quality sound into your ears without wasting any volume. They do also come with the noise isolation feature, but like we've talked about before, it's not a truly necessary feature to have on a great set of cans.
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