These are my recommendations for the best DJ headphones in 2021.
Unless you’re new to headphones, you’ll know that all of them are not equal. Apart from their sizes, there’s another factor that differentiates them: their use case.
Some headphones are meant to be used while you’re swimming or running. This type of headphones usually comes with an emphasized bass since most people listen to EDM/hip-hop during their workout sessions.
Best DJ Headphones 2021 Review Guide
On the other hand, there are headphones specifically designed for DJs. These headphones usually feature bigger sound drivers and produce more detailed and louder sound as a result.
Moreover, these headphones provide a high level of sound isolation, don’t leak sound due to their closed earcups, and come with the earcup-swivel option that is quite important for DJs.
Since most of us have a different budget when purchasing headphones, I have this roundup of DJ headphones belonging to different price categories.
Let’s get started.
Read more: best dj headphones under 100
Audio-Technica ATH-M20x: Check Price On Amazon
Best Budget DJ Headphones 2021
In case you’re reading this website for some time, you’ll know that I love Audio-Technica. I have recommended their ATH-M40X and M50XBT headphones in some previous roundups, while a friend of mine owns their M50X non-wireless version for the last four years and is pretty much satisfied with what he got.
The model we’re discussing right now is the budget headphones pair of ATH-M20X.
Weighing 190g (without the cable), these headphones are very light. It has been achieved mainly by using plastic in the build. You get some metal in headband adjustment rails, but it’s all plastic apart from that. This metal frame is thinner and also exposes the cable that connects the earcups and can be a point of failure.
Due to this fact, you must handle these with care. They can surely withstand a drop or two, but more than that? I’m not too sure.
In terms of specs, you get a larger 40mm sound driver and 15Hz-20000Hz frequency response.
Thanks to this driver, you get flat and natural sound with no distortion for most tracks. The bass isn’t as thumpy as you’d get in other headphones. Treble is slightly harsh, but this is the case with many headphones in this category.
The sound stage is similar to what you’d get in an average closed-back headphones pair. The soundstage is good but nothing to write home about.
Another thing you must consider is that ATH-M20X comes with relatively more impedance. So they won’t work that well with your smartphone.
Being budget headphones, ATH-M20X aren’t the most comfortable ones out there. The earcups are big and will fit perfectly on most ears, but they’re stiff and don’t offer a swivel option, which is a big deal in DJ headphones.
This, in addition to the lack of detachable cable, is the biggest downside here.
But still, it’s worth the money you’re paying.
Presonus HD9: Check Price On Amazon
If you have slightly more budget, then you consider the Presonus HD9. It costs roughly $30 more than the Audio-Technica ATH-M20X but offers a lot of improvements.
The first thing you’ll notice is how light these headphones are. Combined with thick earcups, this low weight allows you to wear these for several hours before having any fatigue.
The HD9 offers a wide frequency response of 10-26000 Hz. This wide range ensures you get all the lows, mids, and highs in your sound.
You get a punchy but natural bass. It’s tight and loud, but not exaggerated like in other budget headphones.
There’s a fairly good amount of midrange, which makes the vocals stand out. It still pales in comparison to the bass, but most of us will be fine with it.
The treble notes also carry a good amount of detail and accuracy but don’t sound harsh.
The 40-Ohm Impedance and 1800 mW maximum power handling allow you to use them with a variety of audio sources.
If I were to nitpick anyone downside in HD9, then it would be the poor isolation it offers compared to its competition. You can’t use them in a noisy environment.
Sennheiser HD 25: Check Price On Amazon
Best DJ Headphones 2021 For Value
Next up, we have the Sennheiser HD 25 – a midrange closed-back wired headphones pair.
Since this model has a lot of variants, let’s make it clear at the start. We are discussing the base model HD 25 – not HD 25 Plus, HD 25 light, or HD 25-I II.
It comes with a headband pair at the top. Both of them come with a good amount of padding and can be adjusted which makes them quite comfortable. One side-effect of this padding is that you can get sweaty after long usage.
The design of HD 25 can be a decisive factor whether you’ll go it or not.
While I understand this functional approach made by the Sennheiser where you get a durable and clean design, some of you simply won’t like the all-black design with no accent colors and rounded earcups.
But considering that these are made for the studio environment, I would not reject them simply on their design.
Sennheiser’s headphones are generally known for their accurate bass and midrange frequencies along with a somewhat downward-sculpted treble that makes sound detailed.
In HD 25, on the other hand, you get a strong bass response. It can’t be compared to bass headphones but is present, and you can feel it. The midrange is flat, and the treble is clear.
Overall, It results in headphones that feel good in mixing/mastering soundtracks as well as in regular usage. The imaging is accurate, but the soundstage is small.
Due to its high clamp and closed back nature, HD 25s are one of the best passively isolated on-ear headphones you can have right now.
V-MODA Crossfade 2 Wireless – Check Price On Amazon
Best Wireless DJ Headphones 2021
The headphones we have discussed so far in wired in nature.
It’s not a big deal until you break that cable. And since many of those don’t come with a spare cable, replacing this broken cable can be costly.
That’s why I went with V-Moda Crossfade 2 Wireless for the last spot. It’s the successor to the original Crossfade wireless and features areas in some keys areas.
One of such areas is comfort, where you get larger and thicker earpads with more cushioning. These rounded hexagons are large enough to surround your ears and provide a good level of passive isolation. The underside of the headband is cushioned as well, which adds to this comfort factor for these headphones.
In addition to this, you get bigger 50mm sound drivers, larger frequency response, and more battery life than its predecessor.
One downside of this bigger battery is the slightly extra weight it adds to the headphones. The overall weight is 309g.
It feels tough and sturdy, but the simplistic and bare-bones styling might not be everyone’s cup of tea, and you certainly won’t feel like taking them outside with you.
Crossfade 2 wireless comes with cable as well. You can use that cable for wired connections if the battery is low. This cable includes things like an in-line mic and in-line remote controls and is a handy addition – in my opinion.
Sound-wise, it’s one of the best Bluetooth headphones in its price range. V-Moda has made changes in the form of detail and clarity. The quality of the bass has also improved when compared to its predecessor.
One downside of this clarity is that it makes the flaws of bad recordings more prominent and makes them sound harsh.
Like other V-Moda headphones, the bass is on the heavier side. But unless you’re an audiophile, you’re good to go.
Overall, the sound can be described as somewhat balanced and feels quite open for a closed-back pair.
Unlike other wireless headphones that come with a cable, there’s no difference between wired and wireless modes.
To sum it up, these are good headphones with a lot of things to like, but I feel that features like AptX (you can get it in rose gold version) and ANC should’ve been present at this price level.