Different Types Headphones clear Simplified

different types of headphonesWhen you now decide to buy headphones, and you are trying to figure out what type of to choose, you can be confused, so now we look at the various types of headphones that are available in the market.

This also depends on what you want to use the headphones for, gaming home theater, gym, office or travelling.

1. EarBuds

These headphones are similar to the in-ear headphones. Perhaps the main difference between earbuds and in-ear headphones is that they don’t penetrate your ear canal as much and don’t have the slim design but have larger circles that press against the ear.

These types of headphones are one size fits all type of meaning that they depend on your ears to be held in place.

They mostly don’t come with cushions for the ears so the comfort depends on size of the earbuds and individual unique ear features.

Earbuds allow in ambient noise from the environment, this is a positive as well as a negative because you can be safe in traffic while using them, but they are lacking when it come to noise isolation and don’t produce the best sound quality.

The main advantage is that they are mostly less expensive than earphones or in-earphones and are smaller in size. The sound quality is also not accurate but depends on the model you find.

They are definitely for you if you are looking for headphones that are compact and easy to carry around.


  • They are portable and compact
  • Very affordable


  • They fall easily, thus not good for the gym, or outdoor activities.
  • They don’t give any noise isolation
  • Not so good sound quality because of their small speakers, thou this depends on the model and company.
  • They can hurt your ears and cannot be worn for a long period of time

2. In Ear Headphones (also known as canal phones)

As the name describes these headphones enter the ear canal.

These headphones are the most portable, as they can be folded and carried easily. This is mainly because their drivers are very compact.

They are most popular with musicians, audio engineer and audiophiles, since the IEMs are of higher quality.

They generally have a silicone ear tip for protection and comfort .As for the sound quality and style design depends on the model that you find.

They can block noise from the outside environment, if they are placed properly into the ear canal. This is important as you don’t have to increase the volume of your music, which is actually not good for your health in the long run.

In –earphones are for you if you are looking for headphones that provide portability, versatile and convenient. They are also for suitable for travel, the gym, listening to music and the best bet for on the go headphones.


  • They are very portable
  • Sound clarity
  • understandable noise isolation


  • They might be dangerous since they are so close to the ear canal
  • They are prone to sliding out.


3.Over The Ear Headphones

These are larger than most headphones and cover the entire ear. They are also known as circumaural or full-size headphones.

The main difference between the on-ear headphones and the over- the ear headphones is that these are a bit larger and cover the entire ear and are padded all round.

They feature a fully closed design this way they can close off the ambient noise and this offers good enough noise isolation.

They fit tit and snug and are quite comfortable, but this depends on the model of headphones that you buy, as the padding is different.

They are a lot heavier than other types of headphones and can cause you to sweat if you wear them for a period of time. The weight can also cause your neck to ache if you wear them for a long period of time.


  • They fit tight and snug
  • They over a great deal of noise isolation


  • They are heavy
  • Can cause you to sweat

4. Closed Back Headphones

They are bulkier than other headphones. They come in different styles; they can be either, over-ear or on-ear and are worn over the head

They can get rid of ambience noise regardless of your environment so that you can hear only what you want. This makes them good for hearing your favorite music or podcast. They can also produce excellent sound quality.

They can be used by a variety of purposes. They are mostly preferred as studio headphones as they block out the external noise and don’t have sound leakage and ensure that you hear every bit of the vocals.


  • excellent noise isolation


  • They can lead to ears sweating if used over a period of time.

5. Open Back Headphones

They are also known as Semi-open headphones. They are similar to the closed-back headphones; the main difference is that these allow sound to leak to the environment.

These like the closed- back headphones come in an on-ear style and the over ear style.

The design of sound leakage is mostly preferred by audio engineers and audiophiles because it allows the mix to remain accurate and avoid build-up of certain frequencies which happens with the closed back headphones.

There are more comfortable since there is generally less pressure created when wearing these headphones. So you can wear them comfortably for a long period of time.

Since they cover the whole ear they can also offer sound isolation.


  • They offer noise isolation
  • They are more comfortable


  • They have sound leakage
  • They are still heavier than other headphones

6. On Ear Headphones

They are also known as Supra-aural headphones. These as the name suggest the earpads rests directly on the ear. These are a lot smaller than the over-ear headphones.

The sound quality and comfort depends on the type of model you get, thou they are a lot lighter than the over-ear headphones. They also offer sound isolation but there is sound leakage to the environment.

They are comfortable and unlike the over-ear headphones they don’t cause you to sweat if you wear them over a long period of time. They fit quite snug since they mostly rest on the ears, so one has to buy ones that are of the right size otherwise they can be uncomfortable.


  • Lighter than the over-ear headphones


  • Sound leakage to and from the environment
  • They can fit too snug and become uncomfortable with the wrong fitting

7. Wireless Headphones

These headphones used to use infrared or radio frequency before to connect to devices, but now that technology is close no existent; we are in a new era now. These days they use Bluetooth for connectivity.

These headphones have a small computer chip inside them that allow you to pair with devices when you want to play music.

This offers great benefits as you are able to go wireless, this no doubt  so far is  their greatest advantage as they offer flexibility and versatility unlike other headphones.

You can use them at the gym, for outdoor activities, in the office and practically anywhere you want to be cordless.

They also produce great sound quality just as the wired counterparts, thou people complain of sound lagging but this depends on the model of the headphones, as this is factored in seamless Bluetooth connectivity.

They come in various styles, in-ear, wireless earbuds, over-ear and on- ear headphones. There is wireless style that has a connecting cord to the other pair and true wireless that don’t have any cords at all.

They are a bit more expensive than the other wired headphones due to their advanced technology.


  • They are versatile
  • They come in various styles


  • They are bit expensive
  • They require charging, the wired ones depend on the charge of the connected device.

8. Noise Cancelling Headphones

They come in both as over-ear and earbuds styles. These headphones are able to offer you active noise cancellation.

This is different from noise isolation.  Since they have a simple built in electric circuit that blocks sounds from the ambience this is done by emission of sound waves that counter those of the outside noise thus cancelling it out this is the Active noise cancelling (ANC).

This feature is important; you now have the option on canceling the sound from the ambience without putting on very loud music on your headphones. This adds to the comfort and the sound quality.

They are idle for airplanes and train commutes they can be used for the gym but not advisable for outdoor activities as there is a safety concern as you might not be able to hear income traffic.


  • Active Noise cancellation
  • Offer ergonomic features for the ear(health benefits)


  • They have the underwater dizzy effect
  • They a very expensive