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tech consumer guide

Last updated on September 1st, 2020 at 03:41 pm

Top 6 Best Headphones For Field Recording

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Last updated on August 10th, 2020 at 12:12 pm

We have people who record sounds in their studio. And we have the other group of people who record the natural and human-produced sounds outside the recording studio.

Field recording i.e. recording sounds outside a studio has grown over the years.

In this article, we list the best headphones for field recording to help improve your craft.


Position
First Place
Runner Up
Best Budget
Snapshot
Sony MDR7506 Professional Large Diaphragm Headphone
Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones, Black, Professional Grade, Critically Acclaimed, With Detachable Cable
KZ ZS10 Pro, Linsoul 4BA+1DD 5 Driver in-Ear HiFi Metal Earphones with Stainless Steel Faceplate, 2 Pin Detachable Cable (Without Mic, Black)
What You Need To Know About The Headphones

What the best headphones for field recording? The Sony MDR7506 occupies that spot. Professional monitoring headphones for studio and field recording.

The Audio Technica M50x is the favourite and highly recommended headphones for field recorders. It offers superb sound quality and comfort.

Who said you can’t use earphones for field recording? The KZ ZS10 Pro are the best budget IEM earphones you can get.

Prime
Rating
-
Position
First Place
Snapshot
Sony MDR7506 Professional Large Diaphragm Headphone
What You Need To Know About The Headphones

What the best headphones for field recording? The Sony MDR7506 occupies that spot. Professional monitoring headphones for studio and field recording.

Prime
Rating
Position
Runner Up
Snapshot
Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones, Black, Professional Grade, Critically Acclaimed, With Detachable Cable
What You Need To Know About The Headphones

The Audio Technica M50x is the favourite and highly recommended headphones for field recorders. It offers superb sound quality and comfort.

Prime
Rating
Position
Best Budget
Snapshot
KZ ZS10 Pro, Linsoul 4BA+1DD 5 Driver in-Ear HiFi Metal Earphones with Stainless Steel Faceplate, 2 Pin Detachable Cable (Without Mic, Black)
What You Need To Know About The Headphones

Who said you can’t use earphones for field recording? The KZ ZS10 Pro are the best budget IEM earphones you can get.

Prime
Rating
-

Last update on 2020-09-23 at 21:15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


Preview
Name
Rating
Type and Acoustic Design
 
Sony MDR7506 Professional Large Diaphragm Headphone
Wired, Closed over-ear
Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones, Black, Professional Grade, Critically Acclaimed, With Detachable Cable
Wired, Closed over-ear
Sennheiser HD 25 Professional DJ Monitor Headphone - Limited 75th Anniversary Edition
Wired, Closed On-ear
beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro 32 ohm Limited Edition Professional Studio Headphones, Gray
Wired, Closed Over-ear
Sennheiser HD280PRO Headphone (new model)
Wired, Closed-back over-ear
KZ ZS10 Pro, Linsoul 4BA+1DD 5 Driver in-Ear HiFi Metal Earphones with Stainless Steel Faceplate, 2 Pin Detachable Cable (Without Mic, Black)
Wired, In-ear

Here Are The Top 6 Best Headphones For Field Recording


Where To Buy

Price not available

Buy On Amazon

Pros

  • Crystal clear sound
  • Comfortable
  • Noise isolation
  • Long cord

Cons

  • The long cord can be annoying and difficult to replace
  • Heavy cord

Acoustic design: Closed over-ear | Connectivity: Wired | Frequency response: 10-20kHz | Drivers: 40mm | Driver type: Neodymium | Sensitivity: 106 dB/W/m | Impedance: 63 ohm

In looking for the best wired headphones for field recording. Comfort is one of the important things you look for in a headphone. And the Sony MDR7506 delivers just that.

These headphones have super-soft ear pads that go easy on your ears. This allows you to listen to record sounds for long periods. And you know how sometimes field recording sessions can be very long.

The headphones offer great noise isolation making it a solid option for those who record in noisy environments.

Sound quality-wise, the Sony MDR7506 produces crystal clear sounds. It’s able to capture and reproduce the high and subtle sounds. In other words, these are audiophile quality headphones.

Overall, the Sony MDR7506 is a great value affordable headphone for field recording.


Pros

  • Excellent sound quality
  • Great build quality
  • Beautiful design
  • Comes with 3 detachable cables

Cons

  • Doesn’t use the standard headphone jack
  • Soundstage could be better

Acoustic design: Closed Over-ear | Connectivity: Wired | Frequency response: 15Hz-28kHz | Drivers: 45mm | Driver type: Neodymium | Sensitivity: 99 dB/W/m | Impedance: 38 ohm

The Audio Technica M50x is one of the best and highly recommended headphones for field recording. Because sound quality and reproduction are excellent. It’s able to reproduce sounds so well.

And in field recording, you know sound quality and reproduction are paramount. One of the main reasons why they are used for studio recording too.

In short, if you prioritize sound over everything. Then these are the headphones to get.

The Audio Technica M50x produces crystal clear and precise sounds. Once you put these on. You would never want to take them off.

Build quality is top-notch. Made from leather, metal, and plastic. The headphone as a whole is robust. And it is easily foldable and has its bag. You can keep it in. Included in the package are 3 detachable cables. Most headphones come with one or two.

One more thing. The Audio Technica doesn’t make use of the standard 3.5mm which connects to it. But, rather a 2.5mm jack. This makes the cables only meant for it and its siblings.

Finally, these are comfortable. Large ear pads that are soft and apply an almost perfect amount of pressure. That doesn’t cause any irritation or discomfort. They are also lightweight and do bear down on your head when worn for long periods.

On a side note, the Audio Technica is not noise canceling but are noise isolating. A major benefit if you record in noisy environments.

The Audio Technica M50x with its near audiophile sound quality is one of the best headphones for field recording. Highly-recommended.


Pros

  • Superb sound
  • Great noise isolation
  • Durable and Lightweight

Cons

  • Cable connection is a weak point
  • Not suitable for those with large heads

Acoustic design: Closed On-ear | Connectivity: Wired | Frequency response: 16Hz-22kHz | Drivers: N/F | Driver type: Dynamic | Sensitivity: 120 dB/W/m | Impedance: 70 ohm

When it comes to noise isolation. Sennheiser HD 25 is the best there is. This makes it the perfect field recording headphones for noisy environments like cities, towns, etc.

In addition to that, the sound quality is superb. The headphones can reproduce very detailed and well-balanced sound. In other words, you will be to capture all kinds of sounds during your field recording. Everything will sound sharp, clear and crisp.

When it comes to build quality, the headphones are durable thanks to its well-made construction.

When it comes to comfort, it has two sides. For those with large heads, this might not be for you. Because the clamping force is strong. But for everyone else, the Sennheiser HD 25 is very comfortable coupled with its lightweight.

You can easily wear this for several hours. The earpads are soft and don’t cause any irritation. One cool thing about the Sennheiser is that you can split open the headband to relieve the clamping force quite a bit. This improves comfort.

Every product is not perfect. And the Sennheiser’s greatest weak point is the cable connection to the earcup. Although it is well-protected. Constant pulling and tagging will wear it down. So you have to be careful.

Overall, the Sennheiser HD 25 is one of the best lightweight headphones for field recording.


Pros

  • Pure high-resolution sound
  • Superb noise isolation
  • Very comfy
  • Swappable earpads

Cons

  • Bulky

Acoustic design: Closed Over-ear | Connectivity: Wired | Frequency response: 5-35kHz | Drivers: N/F | Driver type: Dynamic | Sensitivity: 96 dB/W/m | Impedance: 32 ohm

The first thing you will notice about the Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro is how large they are. The large size and the fact that you can’t fold them makes it not portable-friendly.

However, the Beyerdynamic DT770 Pro are very comfortable headphones.

Because it doesn’t apply a lot of pressure on the sides of your head. The ear cushions are also soft and large. Your ears also do not feel cramped. All thanks to the velour pads they are made out of. Your ears will remain cool at all times.

The build quality is above average. The headphone as a whole is built like a tank. As mentioned above, it is big, large and surprisingly lightweight. The headband is metal covered in leather and the caps are made from hard plastic.

Beyerdynamic headphones are known to sound great. And these are no exception. The Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro is a closed-back headphone that has an amazing sound quality and Bass.

It can reproduce sounds very well and has great imaging along with soundstage. Pure high-resolution sound is what you get with these headphones. And the noise isolation works very well.

The Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro are great headphones that deliver over the top value. One of the best field recording headphones you can get.


Pros

  • Very comfortable
  • Superb sound quality
  • Sound isolation works well
  • Great build quality

Cons

  • Earpads get warm after extended use

Acoustic design: Closed-back over-ear | Connectivity: Wired | Frequency response: 8Hz-25kHz | Drivers: N/F | Driver type: Dynamic | Sensitivity: 102 dB/W/m | Impedance: 64 ohm

The most striking thing about the Sennheiser HD280 Pro is its jet-black colour and robotic design. In addition to that, the build quality is great. It has a solid construction overall.

The Sennheiser HD280 Pro is an over-ear closed-back headphone.

In other words, it is very comfy and the sound isolation works very well enough. You might think its noise canceling. You can wear the headphones for long hours. However, the earpads do get warm.

When it comes to sound quality, the Sennheiser HD280 Pro is awesome. No surprise here, Sennheiser headphones have great sound quality.

Moreover, the HD280 Pro was designed for professional monitoring applications and this includes field recording. Because of that everything is going to sound superb. The sound reproduced by the headphones is clean and crisp.

Overall, the Sennheiser HD280 Pro is one of the best field recording headphones. Because sound quality and reproduction are one of the best.

Plus, it was designed for professional monitoring applications.


Where To Buy

Buy On Amazon

Pros

  • Superb sound quality
  • Very portable
  • Good build quality
  • Good comfort

Cons

  • Minimal accessories

Acoustic design: In-ear | Connectivity: Wired | Frequency response: 7-40kHz | Drivers: 10mm | Driver type: Dynamic | Sensitivity: 111 dB/W/m | Impedance: 24 ohm

There is the majority who prefer headphones for field recording. And some prefer earphones for field recording. However, headphones have an advantage over earphones because of their superior sound quality.

Enter the in-ear monitor (IEM) earphones. In this case, the KZ ZS10 Pro. Not only do they provide the superb sound quality they are much more affordable than headphones. This makes them the best IEM earphones for field recording.

They are also portable and have good build quality. The comfort is good enough to be worn for quite a long time.

Overall, the KZ ZS10 Pro is the best field recording earphones. Because they have great sound quality and are much more affordable than headphones.

Finally, they are very portable allowing you not to worry about if you can bring it along or not. Highly-recommended.


What To Look For When Getting The Best Headphones For Field Recording

So you want to capture and record the ambient sounds in the environment? One of the main audio equipment you require is headphones.

In this mini-guide, we show you how to select the best field recording headphones.

Noise Isolation

Noise-isolating headphones are important when recording in the field. Especially when there is a lot of noise. Noise-canceling headphones are not recommended for field recording.

Because they give the illusion of the sound quality being better than it is.

Also, some noise-canceling headphones can result in a change of sound quality and reproduction. For this reason, you want headphones that naturally isolate sound.

Open-air headphones (headphones that don’t isolate noise) can be used when you are sure there will be no noise in the environment. In other words, natural environments far away from noisy cities, towns, etc.

Sound Quality

It’s all about the sound quality when it comes to field recording. You need headphones that are about to reproduce sounds as accurately as possible. And that means you can’t skimp on sound quality when choosing a field recording headphone.

There are two ways you can test the sound quality of a headphone:

  • Trying it out yourself or letting a sound expert try it out for you
  • Watching and reading reviews on that particular headphone

Start with watching and reading reviews on the headphone. And if you think it’s for you. You can get one and try it out to see if it truly fits your needs.

Build Quality

You are going to record sounds in the natural environment. And so it makes sense to get a headphone that has solid build quality. That way it will last longer and won’t be easily worn out.

Field recording headphones go through a lot of wear and tear than headphones used at the studio or home. Because you are always moving around and there’s also the weather conditions.

Comfort

No one likes to wear headphones that press hard against their ears. Uncomfortable headphones can’t be worn for long periods. In extreme situations, you can’t even wear them at all.

Field recording is not an easy task and you will be spending hours recording natural and human-produced sounds. So you need headphones that fit snugly and feel like pillows on your ears.

Furthermore, the headphones shouldn’t weigh a lot. Over-ear headphones are highly recommended followed by on-ear.

  • Over-ear headphones are the most comfortable out of all the headphones. They cover your ear completely and usually have soft ear pads.
  • On-ear headphones rest directly on your ears. Most of them are comfortable with some being not being so comfy.

Final Thoughts

You need the right audio equipment when it comes to field recording. And headphones are one of them.

Fortunately, with this list, you wouldn’t have any problem in selecting the best field recording headphones.

That’s it for the best headphones for field recording.

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