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DJ Headphones

DJs are always the life of the party and when it comes to DJ headphones you need reliability while performing. Whether you’re a club DJ, mixer, or a backyard Dj, a comfortable, an accurately sounding and designed headphone will help you in stay focused on the music. So how do you choose between DJ headphones? We will break down everything a new or even a professional needs to look for and take into account before their next pair of DJ headphones.

Sound Quality

Unlike Studio headphones, the primary purpose is not for production. DJs need headphones that have deep bass and clear audio to command their music the way it is meant to be. There are four features within every headphone’s sound quality. They make up the dynamic sounds of every individual headphone. By measuring and checking these specifications newbies and professionals alike will be able to buy the right DJ headphones for them.

Example of DJ Headphone Specification Comparison Chart

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Image Credit: planetdjblog.blogspot.com

Driver Diameter (mm)

Think of the headphone “driver diameter” as a “mini-speaker” within each earpiece that converts the electrical power to sound.
Just know when looking at DJ headphones, you typically want to buy at least 40mm drivers. As they will usually produce deeper bass.

Maximum input (mW)

The “maximum input” is a measurement rating in “milliwatts” (mW). The higher rating is, the less distortion you will hear.
When buying headphones for professional usage always buy headphones with a power rating of 3000mW, for minimum or no distortion.

Sensitivity (dB/mW)

A Headphone’s “sensitivity” is the sound pressure level produced and measured in decibels (dB/mV).
Make sure to check the sensitivity is just right and not high as it can cause damage to your ears over time.

Frequency Range (Hz)

The “frequency range” of a headphone are measured by hertz (Hz). A single hertz refers to one cycle per second (cps).
The average person can hear 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz. Although when buying headphones is it not necessary to go any wider than that.

Design

The design aspect of DJ headphones is important as you will need to hear not only the crowd but when to switch the tracks over. The ultimate dynamic in being a DJ is being able to mix and command your music the way it should be.

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Durability & Comfort

DJs are always adjusting and moving their headphones and it is of importance that they are durable enough to withstand heavy usage. The ideal headphone should last you an average of two to three years. Make sure before buying that you always check the headband strength, hinges, and joints. It would be terrible if you were performing live and your headphones came apart or even loose and forced you to stop your session.

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However you wear them, a DJs headphones should always be comfortable. Generally speaking, the more padding the headphones have, the more comfort they will provide. Just made sure to check for weight as it can put a lot of unwanted strain on your neck.

Swiveling Design & Cords

Having a swiveling mechanics or your headphone is not only professional looking but it can help you become a better DJ as well. Swiveling mechanics on DJ headphones is an essential part of mixing. While mixing you will undoubtedly be looking at your upcoming cue. Having one ear open ensures a better transition to the next track. As you will not have to mess around with your headphones every time you want to transition.

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Compatibility is a small but necessary step in DJing. Most DJ headphones come equipped with a 3.5mm (1/8″) jack, which are compatible with all smartphones and iPods. However, almost all DJ controllers and mixers can only handle a bigger 6.25mm (1/4″) jack. These are normally easy to find as they are the same size for electric guitars. If you already have boughten your DJ headphones with a 3.5mm jack, do not worry. You can also buy a small converter to a 6.25mm for around 5 – 10$.

Having foldable DJ headphones makes traveling around that much easier. Not having to worry about your headphones breaking before your next set is a relieve within itself. It is likely that while traveling to your next DJ session if your headphones aren’t foldable, they are more prone to cause accidental damage.

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It is also good to keep in mind that DJ headphones never have a two corded design as it is more prone to cord snagging and in-booth accidents. DJ headphones will always have a single cord design for easy to use mixing and moving.

Closed-Back Design vs. Open-Back Design

Every professional DJ should know that closed-back headphones are the better choice for one simple reason. Closed-back headphones isolate unwanted background noise and typically produce a better bass response. Especially important when it comes to timing the transition of your upcoming track.

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While open-back headphones are specifically designed to let background noise in. Not a potentially good choice if you are in a noisy place and on top of that a DJ. When transition comes into play, DJs will most likely have to turn their volume up to ear-damaging levels to hear the right transition timing.
Consider Your Mixing Stance

As we talked about in with the swiveling mechanics, the most common technique of DJing is by mixing with one ear on and one ear off. But the way you stand has all of the difference between getting better and staying the same. Those who decide to stand stiff using their shoulder to hold the ear piece on could take some time to use too and may not be easy for some. But if you buy DJ headphones with earpieces that spin out of the way of wearing them. It is necessary while DJing but can definitely help new or veteran DJs

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