inserts, plugs, full-size and others


The growing popularity of this accessory is largely due to the growing market for portable electronics. Therefore, in addition to the usual models, there are new devices for sound transmission, adapted specifically for such devices. Choosing headphones, you should be based not only on your own preferences, but also on the features of the device for which this accessory is purchased. Consider what types of headphones exist, and what are their functional differences.

On-ear headphones

Classification of modern headphones

The quality of such accessories, as well as their price, is largely determined by the design features and the manufacturer. In any case, before buying, the user must independently check their sound, and if possible, compatibility with the device on which they will be used.

Headphones are classified according to several parameters. Group division is affected by:

  • design features;
  • type of installed radiator (speaker);
  • way to connect to the sound source.

Construction type

This is perhaps the most important criterion that most buyers pay attention to. When choosing headphones, first of all, you should proceed from a personal understanding of comfort. Someone is comfortable if volumetric speakers lie tightly on his ears, another will categorically not like it, this also applies to headphones inserted into the auricle and all others. And only then you should think about the sound quality, which also depends on many parameters: the design of the membrane emitter, the possible range, power.

Earphones («tablets»)

This is the most common type of headphone. They are usually included with phones and other gadgets. The earbuds are inserted into the auricle, but do not block access to other sounds. Therefore, the quality of the sound heard suffers. Such devices are not chosen by music lovers, who care about every nuance of sound. But for just listening to, for example, audiobooks or language tutorials, these headphones are perfect. They are inexpensive and sold everywhere.

in-ear headphones


  • light, compact, fit in a pocket or purse;
  • the simplest ones really cost a penny;
  • sold everywhere.


  • the sound quality is low: there are extraneous sounds from the outside, there is no bass, crackling appears over time (due to dirt on the pores);
  • wires break at bends and at junctions (moreover, expensive headphones and cheap ones are almost the same);
  • may have an uncomfortable fit, fall out.

You may be wondering: how to properly put on headphones.

Intracalal headphones («plugs»)

Such headphones inserted into the ear canal. They have a volumetric silicone or foam nozzle (ear pad), which tightly closes the ear canal from extraneous sounds. These headphones have a better range than the previous ones. They are good at low frequencies too.

Attention: vacuum headphones provide good sound insulation from the outside world. On the streets you have to be careful, because you can not hear the danger.

in-ear headphones


  • neat, compact (there are wireless and wired);
  • well fixed in the ear and completely eliminate external noise;
  • there are waterproof ones in which you can swim or take a bath;
  • good sound quality throughout the range.


  • this format is not suitable for everyone, some are uncomfortable with such a snug fit inside the ear;
  • not suitable for children
  • not hygienic (from close contact with the skin, nozzles quickly get dirty);
  • if you often, long and loudly listen to music in such headphones, it will burn to develop hearing loss (deafness of varying degrees);
  • musical gourmets note that there are problems with sound at medium frequencies.

On-ear headphones

These headphones are overhead three-dimensional or flat elements, which are fixed with arcs or a rim to the ears. They give decent sound quality, but almost completely do not cut off the external sound background. They are great for listening to music while being in a quiet place.

on-ear headphones


  • the best option for children;
  • sound good in the entire range, including bass;


  • branded headphones of this type are expensive;
  • may sit uncomfortable, pinching the auricles;
  • voluminous.

Over-ear headphones

These are headphones that completely cover the auricles with voluminous “pillows”. They completely cut off external noise. The user happens only what he wants to hear, and in very high quality. These are accessories that are bought mainly by passionate people: gamers and music lovers. These headphones can be connected to TV, computer and even to stereo systems.

Over-ear headphones

Sennheiser Momentum M2 AEG over-ear headphones

Over-ear headphones come in the following types.

  1. Open. They have a perforated or mesh outer surface. They do not have 100% tightness, so not all of the sound wave remains inside, which is why good bass is not heard in them.
  2. Closed. As the name implies, they completely cover the ear. On the one hand, this guarantees complete sound insulation, on the other hand, such tightness gives an internal echo, which is felt as a booming sound.
  3. Semi-open. These headphones have perforations, but not on all surfaces. They have absorbed the advantages of the first two types: clear sound and good tightness.

We advise you to read: which is better, open or closed headphones.


  • high sound quality at all frequencies, noise reduction is often provided;
  • come with or without wires;
  • do not cause discomfort.


  • very big;
  • expensive.

Monitor (studio) headphones

Formally, they are full size. And stand out in a separate category because of their technical characteristics. This is professional equipment with the best sound quality possible. This technique is very expensive, it is used in the work of sound engineers, dj-musicians, in recording studios.

Monitor Headphones

You may be wondering: how to choose headphones.

Emitter design

As a rule, buyers do not pay attention to this criterion. In total, four types are distinguished, but it is rare when you can find a large selection of this parameter in a store. Most often there are models with conventional speakers. It is worth starting with them.


The most popular version of the converter of electrical oscillations of sound frequency into acoustic. A membrane is located in a closed case, to which a coil with a wire and a magnet are connected. Under the action of an electric current, a strong electromagnetic field is created, which is transmitted to the membrane, in turn, it begins to move and reproduce sound.

Despite the fact that such speakers are considered the most common (largely due to the affordable price), from an acoustic point of view, this is not the best option.. But it cannot be said that they have poor sound quality, moreover, such models have a fairly wide sound range.

Such an emitter can be installed in any headphones.

Dynamic headphones

Fostex Dynamic Headphones


Devices elite class Hiend, which are not found in simple consumer electronics stores, have just such an emitter. Their price is quite high. A light sonic membrane is placed between the two electrodes. Thanks to this structure, it is possible to eliminate almost all sound distortion. Devices with such a radiator have an excellent quality of reproduction of sound information. A special docking station is used for connection.

An electrostatic emitter can only be found in full-size models.

Electrostatic headphones

Sennheiser Orpheus electrostatic headphones

orthodynamic and isodynamic

Between two strong magnets there is a radiator with a complex structure (rectangular or round membrane, made of a thin plastic film with a special foil coating). Thanks to this structure, it was possible to achieve excellent sound quality with high definition and good power reserve (relevant for loudspeakers). Like electrostatic emitters, they can only be found in full-size models.

Orthodynamic headphones

Fostex Orthodynamic Headphones


Meet in expensive models of in-ear headphones. With their compact size, they have great performance, but have a limited sound range, especially at low frequencies. But they have good quality of detailed reproduction, high accuracy and sensitivity.

Armature headphones

EarSonic SM64 armature headphones with detachable wire

This is interesting: how to choose gaming headphones.

Signal transmission method

This setting is determined by how you connect to the audio source.


The most common and affordable for many consumers are wired headphones. They have high quality sound reproduction. The connection is carried out by means of a wire of different lengths through a connector with a standard Mini-jack 3.5 mm connector.

There are also Jack 6.3 mm, micro-jack 2.5 mm and USB connectors, the latter are used in new models of accessories.

A microphone, volume control, call acceptance button can be installed on the wire. Any models of headphones can be wired, different in design, type of emitters or acoustic design.

Considering the options for wired accessories for a phone with a headset, there are three ways microphone mount.

  1. On the wire, next to the call accept button or volume control. This type is suitable for users who rarely use this option. The speaker, through which sound information is transmitted to the interlocutor, rubs against clothing when moving, which creates additional interference.
  2. Fixed position. This is the option that is most convenient for working on stationary equipment, for example, at a computer. If desired, such a headset can be connected to the phone via a standard connector.
  3. Built-in microphone. The best option for a telephone headset. But still, such a speaker picks up extraneous noise, which reduces the quality of the transmitted sound.

If you plan to often use a telephone headset for telephone conversations, it is better to choose closed-type models so that strangers cannot hear the interlocutor.

Wired headphones

Philips SHS5200 wired headphones


Modern wireless headphones save the user from constantly tangled wires. When choosing, many are wondering what they are, and what to look for when choosing wireless headphones?

Today, there are four types of wireless headphones connection, two of which — infrared and radio connection — are gradually losing their relevance. Bluetooth models are considered the most common, and Wi-Fi devices are also gradually gaining popularity, which are distinguished by a large range and the ability to play tracks directly from the network. Such devices work due to the batteries inserted into them.

There are also «hybrid» models, in which it is possible to choose how the headphones are connected to the sound source.

We advise you to read: rating of wireless headphones in 2020.

When choosing headphones, it is important not only to evaluate their design features, but also the sound quality. This is the most important criterion that you should pay special attention to. Before making the final choice, it is necessary to evaluate the capabilities of the accessory by testing it in operation. You should not base your choice on the loudest models in order to listen to your favorite music without interference. In this case, it is better to choose closed types of headphones that have good sound insulation. When using devices for personal listening to audio information, one should not forget about security measures. It is better to refrain from using such accessories on busy city streets and continuously listening to music in the headset for a long time.


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