Many people can agree that the quality of the audio is an essential music factor. When you choose headphones with thicker padding, they might be an obvious choice – however, there are certain aspects, which affect the comfort levels than plush ear cushions alone.
We all know that weight is an important consideration. Nonetheless, when you choose lightweight headphones, they may generate a sore feeling as compared to the heavier ones. Surely, there are more aspects to consider than headphones with modern style and aesthetics.
In today’s article, we will tell you about the 8 best comfortable headphones for extended use in 2020. Before we tell you that, it is important that you come to know about the factors, which determine the comfort levels of headphones. Read on!
Factor Affecting Headphones Comfort
Human beings look similar, right? Yet, they are different in contours, sizes, and shapes. Similarly, headphones exhibit unique features and details, which can make a difference. For instance, one headphone might work well for one person but not for the other in terms of quality and comfort. So, here are a few things to remember when you search for comfortable headphones.
Ear Cup Extension
To date, there is no industry standard as to how small or big a pair of headphones should get. It is important to know that not all manufacturing companies choose designs, which offer an ear cup extension.
If the cup is too short and not fit over or on your ears properly, you will face problems. On-ear cups, in particular, which cannot reach down far enough will cause pressing ears against the head. As a result, there is a contact force acting on the soft tissues and this could lead to soreness.
On the other hand, over-ear cups have both a full and comfortable fit around your ears. This is one of the most essential aspects when it comes to the best headphone audio quality. Over-ear cups with insufficient vertical reach can cause a gap between the cushioning and your skin – particularly around your earlobes.
Are you familiar with the term “clamping force?” If not, let us tell you that it determines the degree of snugging up of headphones against your head. You can’t simply judge it through a visual inspection. The only true way to measure this aspect is by wearing headphones.
In addition, the clamping force shows you the pressure points – irrespective of how thick and nice the ear cushions look. For example, if it is too much, you will feel uncomfortable and will give you intense feelings if you wear glasses.
On the other hand, if the clamping force is lower, your headphones will slip off or fall with the slightest turn of the head.
Ear Cup Rotation
Earcup rotation is another important factor that determines the comfort level of headphones. Both ear cup rotation and clamping force go hand-in-hand with each other. In particular, they work together and conform to the contours of faces naturally. They also deliver even pressure.
You can find headphones with varying degrees of vertical or lateral movement. Therefore, we recommend you to pay attention to the design of the product. When you choose headphones with fixed ear cups, they will offer a small amount of wiggle room.
For example, if the front and top sides of ear cushions press hard against the head of the user than the rear and bottom sides, then it means there is little that can actually be done. Likewise, not everyone has a perfect and box-shaped head that would complement such a headphone style.
When buying comfortable headphones, you need to look for models that offer some freedom of movement. Such a design helps maintain the clamping force, which will not focus on specific areas of the skin that can cause fatigue, discomfort, and even soreness.
However, some users still feel comfortable while wearing fixed earcups headphones. There are many headphone models, which come with flexible headbands providing the desired lateral and vertical mobility. So much so, you actually want earcups that feel cozy and natural as they are capable of maintaining a firm and even contact against the head.
Depth and Size of the Earcup
The factors of depth and size apply to over-ear headphones than on-ear headphones. If the cushions and over-ear cups are too shallow, you will feel your ear are touching or rubbing against the insides. For some users, it might not be a huge problem and just a slight irritation but for many others, it could be a deal-breaker.
Usually, there are many headphone manufacturing companies that place thin fabric over the plastic or metal housing the drivers. Therefore, don’t count much on having a plusher interior for the sensitive skin.
The shape and size of over-ear cups are equally important. Let us just give you a simple example, have you ever worn shoes that were too small for your feet, if yes, then you would certainly know how uncomfortable it is to cram your ears into small spaces.
If such is the case, you will feel abrasive even with soft leather cushions. This is mainly due to constant rubbing – especially when you turn or move your head. If you have ear piercings, you will be prone to experience more irritation from ear cups with an enclosed size.
You can find many headphones that come with three different shapes – i.e. oval, circle, and D. We all know that ears are not round in shape, yet the circular cushions or cups are the easiest to deal with. Not only do they offer ample room but at the same time, you won’t be worrying about angling your headphones.
Additionally, D-shaped and Oval cushions or cups tend to a bit trickier as they might not align with your ears’ direction. Today, on the market, you will find many headphones that present ear cups capable of maintaining a straight line with the headband.
Cushioning and Headbands
Another important factor is to take into consideration both the quality and quantity of cushioning on the headband and the earcups. For instance, when it comes to over-ear headphones, the size and shape of pads on the cups actually play an important role in overall space and depth available for your ears.
Thin cushioning likewise offer little room to keep your ears from coming in contact with the hardware – so they will feel less plush up against the head. In contrast, thicker cushioning are without a doubt the most comfortable.
However, you need to keep in mind that they could put a little squeezing pressure around your ears. So, for on-ear headphones, in general, the amount of cushioning is proportional to the comfort level – especially in terms of direction.
The cushioning material makes a considerable difference. Most manufacturers use memory foam for breathability and supple-soft springiness. Remember, there are different types of memory foam, which are not created equally. Each of them is manufactured in different varieties and densities.
Moreover, the standard foam offers less support, which likewise can tend to squash down flat with time. This type of foam might be good to use within headband, however, it is best-avoided for ear cushions. The reason is that the standard everyday foam does not hold up simply.
There are many headbands, which incorporate foams under the polyester fabric, leather, or nylon mesh. At the same time, there are headphones available on the market that skip it entirely. In addition, you can find headphones, which line headbands with layers of squishy silicones.
Furthermore, there are headphones that incorporate both silicone and leather pads below the metal band. Silicon, in this regard, is capable of maintaining a softer contact with the head. On the other hand, leather provides both clamping force and structural support.
The headband padding is less significant with light-weight headphones, particularly, when the manufacturer has designed them with comfort in mind. Therefore, it is important that you pay attention to heavier headphones, the larger in size over-ear headphones.
How to Choose Comfortable Headphones
Most often, you look for headphones that come with the best audio quality and affordable price. However, when it comes to choosing comfortable headphones, you need to take into consideration the factors affecting the comfort levels of headphones – as explained above.
While choosing comfortable headphones, you need to pay special attention to the shape. By shape, we don’t mean the aesthetic shape of the headphone product. We are actually referring to the physical shape of the headphones. For example, over-ear, on-ear, and earphones, etc. So, to have an informed decision, you need to consider the following elements. Continue reading!
What things you should remember?
Without a doubt, the shape of headphones refers to the aesthetic factor, but it can also be referred to as the comfort level of headphones. It is important to bear in mind that comfortable headphones don’t mean that you can it any time or anywhere. Having said that, your headphones’ shape actually determines when you should use them.
Think about the usage
Before you opt to buy a headphone, we recommend you to think about the moments or situations in which you will use them mostly. For instance, some people like over-ear headphones for their long sessions – particularly when they are reading or studying. However, they can’t bear movement or weight when they exercise or do any physical activity while using headphones. Therefore, most users don’t use their liked headphones during exercise or physical activities – thus do not relish their purchase as they would like to.
Let us clarify this with another example. People working in offices want to enjoy soothing music while they work. However, the problem most office workers face is that their managers do not allow them to use their over-ear headphones as they think this is against the work ethics.
Well, the primary reason again here is the shape of their headphones, which are not sending a friendly message to the co-workers. Therefore, in such a situation, you need to buy smaller headphones so that you can use it comfortably in the office.
Again, how to choose comfortable headphones? Without a doubt, your headphones’ shape has everything to do with the comfort level. However, the size of the headphones, the shape of the pads, and their adaptation to the shape of your ears, head, flexibility, mobility, and rigidity, etc. are also important factors that you need to take into consideration.
Here are a few important steps to choose the most comfortable headphones. Continue reading!
Step 1: while choosing headphones, don’t emphasize much on your hearing. Instead, you need to use your touch. You must visualize using the headphones in situations that are least favorable. If you think the headphones will work well, they are worth buying. Obviously, this depends on your preferences, activities, habits, and lifestyle.
Step 2: When you opt to buy headphones online than in the physical store, the question is how you would judge their comfort level? Well, the simple answer is to look for the user reviews and read comments about the flexibility, rigidity, and comfort in longer sessions. Doing this will give you a much better idea of the headphones awaiting you.
Step 3: Headphones from larger or reputable brands may not always the best in terms of comfort levels – although the quality of sound is another thing and we are not talking about it. There are various “hidden gems” among headphone manufacturers.
So, always look for good alternatives than reputable brands. Today, there are many headphone models that have just made a name for themselves due to the brand. The quality of audio and comfort levels might not necessarily be up to the mark.
Best Comfortable Headphones for Extended Use
We are pretty much sure that by now you have come to know about the comfort levels of headphones, factors affecting the comfort, and steps involved in the purchase process of such headphones.
Considering all these factors and everything else that we have discussed above, we have chosen 8 best comfortable headphones for extended use. Remember, the selection of these headphones is based on thorough research and personal use. So, without further ado, let’s jump into the main topic!
#1 – 1MORE Wireless Over-Ear Headphones
1More Wireless Headphones are on top of the list for obvious reasons. The headband and extenders of these headphones are manufactured from aluminum, which is a much stronger material. When you make adjustments for the size, you will feel comfortable.
To give you a comfortable fit, 1More has made the headband from a rubber-like material. In addition. The ear cups of these headphones are a bit larger with plenty of padding along with a leather look.
These headphones are capable of sliding up and down to give you the right fit. We have personally used these 1More over-ear headphones and we must tell you that with just a little bit of adjustment, they give you a good fit with a proper seal and great comfort.
When it comes to the quality of sound and affordability in terms of price, we think they are great too. Certainly, these headphones are not going to produce an audio quality like Sony WH-1000XM3 – nonetheless, the overall features such as comfort, sound quality, and price make them worth buying.
- Aluminum Material and Comfortable Design
- Affordable Price
- The blue color might not be for everyone
#2 – Audio Technica ATH-AD900X
Audio Technica ATH-AD900X is second on our list of comfortable headphones. Primarily, it is the earpads of these headphones, which attract many users. It has a mesh-like casing, which is made from a durable material “aluminum,” which makes them stronger. You will be surprised if we tell you that these are lightweight headphones and weigh only 9 ounces.
When it comes to the comfort level of these headphones, the manufacturer has done a smart work by giving the pads a generous portion of padding – making them soft to touch and very comfortable. The pads are actually made from foam and a velvet cushion material is used to cover it.
In addition, the open-air design will put on pressure on your ears and allows for a great production of sound. The manufacturer has used magnesium alloy to make the main body of these headphones – thus ensuring their lightweight feature.
Audio Technica ATH-AD900X offers 3D wing support, which is the most unique feature of this product – making them versatile to be used by anyone. The 3D wing support adapts to the size and shape of the wearer’s head. This is the reason we recommend people to buy this product and that’s why this is on our list of the best comfortable headphones for extended use.
- 3D Wing Support and Durable
- Affordable Price
- No rotation or flexing of earcups
#3 – Koss KTXPRO1
Koss KTXPRO1 is one of the best headphones available on the market – as many users tend to buy them for their lightweight design and comfortable fit.
Not only do they come with an adjustable headband but they are also soft-flexible, and cushioned with high-quality material. Koss has used the toughened plastic material in making the overhead supports, which makes them stronger and flexible.
In addition, the ear cups of the headphones have softer foam padding – however, considering the design – when we tested the product, we felt that the padding would get reduced.
Koss headphones are designed to work with a wide range of devices including PC, laptop, smartphones, studio equipment, portable DVD Player, etc. So, it is the comfort level, sound quality, and versatility of these headphones that make them one of the best products on the market.
- High-quality and adequate padding for both headband and earcups
- Affordable price
- Not wireless
#4 – Grado SR80e Prestige Series Headphones
You may feel that GRADO SR80e is a bit rough to touch but still, they are very comfortable. The best thing about these headphones is that it does not make your ears feel hot – even if you use them for a longer period of time.
The earcups are constructed from the plastic material. There are metal grills underneath the foam pads as well as metal roads, which have been incorporated to fix the cups to the headband, which likewise is very adjustable because it is made from synthetic leather.
When it comes to the design of GRADO SR80e headphones, we found it quite interesting. Most of the parts are made from metal and the fascinating thing is that the manufacturer has used plastic material in those parts that would take less of strains.
This makes them quite durable and comfortable. So, durability is what makes most people buy this product.
- Large foam earpads
- Classic design and features
- Some might feel irritation on their ears
#5 – V-MODA XS On-Ear
V-MODA XS on-ear headphones are made from metal with added padding, which makes them strong and long-lasting. Since leather is attractive and hard-wearing, it also gets hot after extended use. To overcome the problem, the manufacturer has smartly fitted a piece of soft cloth inside the band, which prevents this.
The manufacturer has made the earcups from leather, which are likewise well padded and quite comfortable. We like the keen consideration of the manufacturer and the amount of effort they have done in designing and using high-quality material.
Considering the design, style, and material of these headphones, we recommend you to use them at your recoding desk or at the office. Don’t use them in the gym since leather is not the most stable material.
So much so, it is the durability, flexibility, and comfort of these headphones, which make them worth buying.
- Well-designed and constructed
- High-quality leather material
- Move around the ears a little bit that may cause the user to feel uncomfortable
#6 – HE400i Over Ear Full-size Planar
HE400i Over-Ear Headphones are designed carefully using high-quality material. Although they might not be aesthetically beautiful in appearance they are quite comfortable and user-friendly.
These headphones have a headband, which has a new planar design – featuring a soft leatherette inner band perfectly perforated that allows it to sit on the user’s head reliably. HE400i Over-Ear Headphones also have an adjustable outer overhead bar.
The design of these headphones gives the user more control in managing pressure on the ears, which is a significant factor when we talk about the comfort level. So much so, after getting used to the structure of these headphones, you will feel comfortable with the soft headband that makes contact with your head.
The best thing about these headphones that many users consider worthy is that the material from which the earcups are made. It is none other than the polymer – and the earcups are then leatherette with soft cushioning. This is the reason we recommend this product for users who are looking to have a comfortable feeling in terms of headband contact and earcups.
- Comfortable headband and earcups
- Good adjustments
- Plastic material
#7 – Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Professional
Audio-Technica ATH headphones might seem a little larger at first sight. However, they are really lightweight weighing just 8 ounces.
Yes, the appearance does look very tough, durable, and sturdy – giving the impression of heavyweight headphones. Most parts of the headphones are made from plastic. There are a few joints and rotations, which make the design of these headphones unique.
The headband is well-padded and quite adjustable. Thus, this makes them fit easily on your head and ears. Likewise, the earcups have good padding made from durable material, which is also comfortable to feel due to softness.
The comfort level of this headphone product comes from the rotating ear cups, which gives you a perfect fit. The sound quality of these headphones is also very good with balanced bass – thus making them a versatile product for everyone including audiophiles.
- High-quality material
- Excellent comfort level and durability
- Bulky/heavy appearance
#8 – Sennheiser HD 599 Open Back Headphone
One of the most reputable brands on the market, Sennheiser offers a wide range of headphones products in terms of style, design, and sound quality.
What about comfort? Well, Sennheiser HD 599 headphones are exceptionally well-designed made from both metal and plastic material. The Manufacturer has keenly taken care of these headphones’ weight. So, one of the primary benefits of this product is its lightweight structure.
In addition, Sennheiser has nicely made the earpads and cover them with a soft velour, which makes them the most comfortable headphones that feel good on the ear. These over-ear headphones provide you with an adequate amount of clamping.
These headphones fit perfectly on almost everyone because of the not too tight clamping. The headband has an added velour padding, which gives you extra comfort. They are likewise lightweight weighing 8.8 ounces – so it is worth investing in them.
- Highly comfortable and well-adjustable
- Constructed from high-quality metal and plastic
- Average sound quality
Today, on the market, you will find hundreds of headphone brands and thousands of products. However, not all of them are up to the mark – especially in terms of style, design, sound quality, and comfort level.
This is why in today’s article, we have told you about the 8 best comfortable headphones for extended use in 2020 – based on detailed research and personal experience of use. Although it depends on your preferences, we personally recommend V-MODA XS On-Ear and Audio Technica ATH-AD900X from the list. Good Luck!