Best Studio Headphones for Gaming in 2022

Creators prefer studio headphones for music production – especially because of their neutral sound. But professional gamers are also increasingly turning to studio headphones from our range. In this article, we explain the differences between the models and how to find the best studio headphones for gaming.

Difference between Studio Headphones and Gaming Headphones

Studio headphones are designed to reproduce sound as neutrally as possible. This makes it easier to perceive unwanted sound characteristics in a music production. Gaming headphones, on the other hand, often reproduce sound in an optimized manner. They forgive inaccuracies in the sound when gaming and amplify the low-frequency range.

Difference between Headphones and Headsets

One key point is that a pair of studio headphones does not have a built-in microphone, as is the case with a gaming headset. However, this is not necessarily a disadvantage: many gamers – and especially streamers – prefer headphones that can be integrated into the existing setup independently of the microphone.

Noise can escape from the ear cup to the outside of headphones with an Open-Back Headphone. It can happen that your external microphone picks up these noises again, which leads to interference. Your microphone should therefore be well aligned with you when you use open headphones for gaming.

Connecting the Headphone to the Console or PC

Studio headphones usually have a 6.3 mm jack adapter that can be unscrewed, so that you can also connect them to the controller of a PS5, via a 3.5 mm jack without any problems. However, you should note that high-impedance headphones are often too quiet when connected to an underpowered built-in sound card. Therefore, you might want to go for headphones with a lower impedance (below 80 ohms).

Which Headphones are right for you?

Neutral sound is not only required in music production, but increasingly also in gaming. Ultimately, the preferences of the user decide. Therefore, one cannot basically say that studio headphones are not suitable for gaming. Especially the construction of the headphones is often a matter of taste. Some gamers want to be acoustically isolated from their surroundings, while others don’t want to be acoustically isolated and want to hear as much ambient noise as possible.

How do I recognize good Studio Headphones for Gaming?

Studio headphones are for gaming, but especially for audio and music professionals who need to hear lifelike sound to work with audio. Professional headphones come in a variety of styles. In addition to the sound, the wearing comfort, the design, the weight, the impedance and the delivery cope are important.

To find your studio headphone for gaming, you should pay attention to the following features:

  • Sound: studio headphones are intended for analytical work, which is why the frequency response should be as linear as possible. It is also important that the headphones cover all frequencies from 20 Hz to 20 kHz.
  • Wearing Comfort: To listen to audio for many hours, you should prefer comfortable models with velour ear pads. These allow more air to the ear than leatherette pads, but provide poorer sound isolation.
  • Weight: For long studio sessions, lightweight headphones that weigh less than 0.5 pounds are better for your neck muscles.
  • Impedance: Impedance determines what equipment you can use the studio headphones with. So-called high-impedance models require a separate preamplifier.
  • Construction: The design of the earcups on studio headphones is either open or closed. The open variants offer the best sound quality, while closed models have good sound isolation and are suitable for travel.
  • Delivery Scope: The best studio headphones include extras such as a screwable adapter for the jack plug and a carrying pouch in the scope of delivery. Different cable and ear pad types are sometimes included as well.

What is the Best Studio Headphone for Gaming?

Which headphone designs are suitable for gaming?

There are considerable differences between the offered headphones in terms of design and size alone. Now, it’s not just a matter of taste which type of headphones you get, but there are tangible differences between the individual designs.

Below you’ll find the various common build types of headphones. There are basically three form factors: over-ear, on-ear and in-ear, with each type having its own advantages and disadvantages.

  • Over-Ear: The largest headphones among the three designs completely enclose the ear, usually have soft padding and by far the best sound. However, they are also quite heavy and the most expensive of the form factors. Still, if you want the best sound possible, you can’t go past over-ear headphones, and none of the other headphones will draw you into the game like a well-insulated over-ear.
  • On-Ear: Like the over-ear headphones, these headphones sit on your ears, though “on-ear” really means on your ears. You can hear a bit more of your surroundings, but the constant pressure on the ears is usually unpleasant in the long run. In addition, the sound is nowhere near as full as with over-ear headphones. However, the weight is lower and on-ears are a bit smaller, which makes them more portable. Such headphones are especially worthwhile if you are on the go a lot, still want good sound and still need to hear something of the surroundings, for example in traffic. For gamers who primarily use the headphones on the PC, this design is therefore not ideal, and potential is wasted here. However, those who want to switch between smartphone and PC should take a look at the on-ear headphones.
  • In-Ear: For a long time, in-ear headphones were the state of the art when it came to MP3 players or smartphones: Light, small and decent sound for on the go. However, those who play or work with such headphones all day will find the constant wearing in the ear uncomfortable and the sound is not comparable to the other two due to the construction. However, more and more in-ear headphones are coming onto the market that have several sound transducers per side and hardly have to hide behind the larger competitors. The smaller sound transducers also mean a smaller electrical resistance, so the models can be operated without an amplifier all around. The focus on mobile utility remains with the most modern in-ear variant, but in-ear headphones are also very suitable for occasional use on the PC. Many pro gamers usually use in-ears in combination with over-ears.

Which brands and manufacturers perform well in tests on studio headphones?

High-quality studio headphones are a must for professional gaming. If you don’t need just any headphones for the iPhone, but real equipment for the professional gaming, then you’d better invest a little more. If you buy cheap studio headphones, i.e. rather no-name studio headphones, you could quickly regret this later when gaming.

When buying, it is best to look for the following established brands:

  • Beyerdynamic
  • Audio Technica
  • Sony
  • Superlux
  • Sennheiser
  • AKG
  • Samson
  • Yamaha

FAQs on Studio Headphones for Gaming

Are there Studio Headphones with Bluetooth?

In the rarest cases, there are wireless studio headphones. The technical equipment usually does not have wireless technology and it is not advantageous in the studio. Nevertheless, some manufacturers offer wireless studio headphones. However, these are supposed to bring superior sound quality, so people listen to music with them via smartphone.

Studio headphones with Bluetooth are often a technically slimmer version of pure studio headphones and are therefore less suitable for music production than for demanding music listening on the go. If superior sound quality is also important for music enjoyment, you are welcome to use such a device.

Are studio headphones harmful to hearing?

The headphones are not less or more harmful than other types of headphones. Rather, it depends on the volume at which you listen to the tracks through the headphones. Anything above 85 decibels is considered damaging to your hearing.

Why are the best Studio Headphones for Gaming Over-Ear?

Most models of studio headphones for gaming are over-ear studio headphones. In this design, the ears are fully enclosed by the ear cups. Thus, you hear less of the outside world and can fully concentrate on the game.

When should studio headphones be open or closed?

Studio headphones differ primarily in terms of their construction. They are either completely closed and have high sound isolation, or they are open and thus improve the sound in the room. There are also semi-open models for flexible use. The following table shows the differences between the types.

Closed Studio Headphones
  • impermeable back of the earcups
  • best sound isolation
  • ideal for the vocal booth
Open Studio Headphones
  • back of earcups permeable and perforated
  • transparent and spatial sound
  • ideal for mixing and mastering
Semi-Open Studio Headphones
  • semi-permeable back of the earcups
  • neutral sound with moderate external sound attenuation
  • suitable for all applications in the recording studio