Good inexpensive headphones ....?

So for a decent quality pair of headphones, not too expensive… which brand/model would you suggest?

what means “not too expensive”?

headphones for what kind of use (producing, mixing, dj-ing, mp3-player)?

During time i´ve found that there is big difference in what you are doing. If you are making beats by using great sounding sample and Vsti you can use even cheap headphones. But you need to know how tracks from professionals sound on it. It is not my approach but i have friend who did a great glitch mixes on his cheap mobile phone earphones. It has its specific sound, little harsh but but somehow right :)/>/>.
On the other hand if you are recording something or doing mix of band you can need some surgically precise EQ f.e. and cheap headphones wont discover problem frequencies right. As generally speaking i don´t recommend headphones for mixing, because speakers are much more natural, headphones are great for checking mix. They can discover sub bass and harshness of your high end better than your speakers (and its sound is not influenced by your room etc.) and help you to swiftly find problem frequency. But when i am doing panning or dynamic changes i tend to use speakers.
And i use headphones for listening music. So when i am just producing i prefer to use headphones that i know and like f.e. Koss porta pro. It have to be a comfortable experience ).
When i am sitting in studio i would use AKG K series.
But as i said dont relly on headphones too much when i am doing complex mix, they can weaken your ears very fast. (If we are talking about mixing :unsure:)

I would highly recommend beyerdynamic DT231 PRO headphones or similar, they are lightweight, comfortable and sound fantastic for the price.

the lowest in price i would go are the audiotechnica ath-m50, though the low end is a bit strong. but you have to know the characteristics of your cans anyway.
they aren’t exactly cheap, but you get what you pay for.

i know you said “inexpensive”, but if you need headphones to check your mixes, which you know is tricky with any pair of headphones and not recommended without additional monitors, i would recommend the beyerdynamic dt880 pro. they are fantastic, especially for their price. you get a LOT for that money. i still love mine as i did on the first day.

koss portapro hands down are the best sounding headphones I’ve ever used out of all the headphones I ever owned. keep in mind I never owned a pair that cost more than 50 dollars. They have an above average frequency range and they are crystal clear without coloring the audio. Great for music listening and renoising in quiet environments. also according to the many user reviews I read their lifetime warranty is no questions asked you just send them the broken pair with 6 bucks and they send you new ones. however if you are looking for headphones that offer some type of isolation (studio over-the-ear) then these aren’t for you.

Just got a pair of these on ebay for a pretty good price. Thanks for your advice =)

If the price is too good to be true, then it probably is an imitation. Beware of cheap chinese knockoffs in eBay.
My recommendation would be the AKG K550, but the ATH-M50 will do great for electronica as well.

Nah, i wouldn’t think so. They’re used, and the seller put a picture of the actual headphones, not a stock photo.

$80 sound reasonable for these headphones?

Yes, $80 for used M50s should be right.

I gotta second the portapro vote, because I have read that the Koss KSC-75 use the same drivers as the Portapro’s

I have owned several pairs of Koss KSC-75 which I have modified ( Mine have been a variation of this mod ). They sound AMAZING considering the price ($15 USD). No joke, they rival my Sennheiser HD590 which I paid much more than $15 for a long time ago.

The only thing I don’t like about the KSC-75 is they don’t isolate sound well, you can hear stuff around you and other people will be able to hear your music. So for listening in quiet environments they are not optimal. (Or loud environments for that matter, because then you will hear all the other noises) For nighttime listening so as not to disturb my fiancee, I have a pair of Sennheiser HD201. They isolate sound well and sound OK, but not near as good as the KSC-75 or the HD590.

I know you said you already ordered some ath-m50. I don’t have any experience with those but they are probably fine… But I still encourage you to pick up a pair of KSC-75 just so you can amaze yourself with the price-to-performance ratio :) And have an extra set to throw in your travel bag or whatever. :D You really can’t beat this kind of value. And of course if the ksc-75 somehow sound better than the ath-m50, you can always sell the m50’s and get your money back :lol:

organic io: thanks for sharing the link, I’ll have to try this mod soon as the risk is only 15 dollars. yeah I read the 75s sportapros and portapro pros have the same driver so I am looking forward to getting a nice alternate knock-around pair and still have the same great quality.


Portapros are extremely colored. Huge bass/midbass bump, muddy and overall not at all neutral. I’m not saying they’re bad, but they’re the epitome of “popular” entertaining sound, very unsuitable for production. Take a look at and compare their frequency response to other models.
Here’s a graph with AKG K701, pretty neutral heapdhones:
Link cause it won’t let me insert images

Stay away from AKG K-55. I owe them for 6 years now (or somethink like this) and after an hour or so the earlobe starts to hurt. I paid for them almost as much as for a pair of Technics and they were way more comfortable and the sound quality was comparable. As for frequency response it will be far from flat but it doesnt matter really.

@vozka looking at the freq response charts you mentioned, I wouldn’t say the bass/midbass bump is huge. Granted the response isn’t flat across the board but in my experience portapros don’t sound muddy at all unless you listen to a muddy production. I’ve always produced on consumer-grade gear and so far these are giving me the best results after cross referencing along with car stereo, home entertainment center, and my 2.1 mini component system.

Also, in the picture if I’m not mistaken the difference is measured between a 30 bucks hp and a 300 bucks hp… so how about that factor 10 moneys.??
My $.02: get a big stereo/hifi setup, just look at the watts. Then just listen to music you like on it for years. Then start composing on it. Also, have a Sennheiser HD 201 handy because for that price you get unbeatable comfort, sound, and (imo important) you can seal off your ears to hear nothing but the music.

Yes, I didn’t factor the price at all, I wanted to show what a good frequency response chart looks like. 6db difference is A LOT.
You can get much more neutral headphones even at that price though, I don’t know about on ears but with IEMs you’ll get much better sound (Soundmagics are cheaper and slightly better, Klipsch S3 od S4 cost about 15 bucks more here and are on a different level entirely).

I got a $35 pair of Sennheisers, and MAN, they sound fucking unbelievably good for $35. I’d wager that these babies can hold up to the low $100 price range headphones offered by some companies as well (They’ve got a frequency range of 18hz to 18khz, which IMO is pretty damn good for $35). Basically, Sennheiser is a great brand, no matter how cheap or expensive you go.

It’s quite expensive but beyerdynamic DT990 pro are the best that I know in the ratio quality/euro.

It’s very comfortable for mixing !

Try it !

Sincerely yours