AKG K812List Price: $1,990.00$1,499.00
Audio Technica ATH-M70x Professional Monitoring Headphones$299.00
Beyerdynamic DT 1770 Pro$599.99
Direct Sound Extreme Isolation EX-25List Price: $139.95$99.95
Shure SRH1440List Price: $374.00$299.00
Shure SRH1840List Price: $624.00$499.00
Shure SRH240AList Price: $75.00$59.00
No asset is more important to an audio engineer than his or her ears. It’s important to take care of your ears – long periods of exposure to excessive volume can cause irreparable hearing damage. Music today is commonly listened to on headphones, so it’s important to use headphones for reference to be sure that your mix will translate. Because audio engineers are likely to spend an enormous amount of time listening to headphones, so it’s essential to find a pair that is comfortable and that doesn’t cause ear fatigue.
What to Consider
Headphones come in all shapes and sizes. The most common type of headphones for professional audio work are circumaural, meaning that they go around the ear (as opposed to supra-aural headphones, that sit atop the ear and tend to cause discomfort). Circumaural headphones provide better isolation, both to keep you from hearing sounds in the room and to prevent the sound coming from your headphones from bleeding into any microphones. Circumaural headphones are often labeled as “open” or “closed”; open headphones allow more room sound in and tend to bleed into the room, making them more ideally suited to mixing work (when there’s no risk of the sound bleeding into a microphone) than tracking – the last thing you want is to listen back to a perfect vocal take and realize that the microphone picked up the mix from the singer’s headphones. Closed headphones have a thicker shell on the outside and are perfect for tracking situations.
Studio Headphones vs. Consumer Headphones
Not all headphones are created equal. Consumer headphones come in many forms (circumaural, supra-aural, earbuds, etc), and generally lack the wide frequency range of studio headphones. When recording or mixing, you need to be able to hear every detail of the sound, so the wider frequency range makes a big difference.
Most headphones require very little power in order to deliver significant volume levels. However, some headphones have what is called a high impedance (typically 50+ ohms) and deliver lower volume levels, particularly when used with portable consumer devices. Headphones with higher impedance have built-in protection from being blown out, and typically provide a clearer, more transparent sound.
When you’re in the market for a pair of headphones, Westlake Pro has you covered. We carry all of the top brands, including Yamaha, Sony, Focal, AKG, Audio Technica, Beyerdynamic, Sennheiser, and more. Our knowledgeable staff of experts can help you find the right pair of headphones to fit your budget and keep your ears happy for years to come.
We will beat any price, anywhere. We aim to provide the best service possible, and our staff of experts is ready to get you the gear you need with industry-leading service and support at the best price, guaranteed.