8 Best Wired Headphones in 2022: [Tested & Compared]

The wired headphones get you closer to the music than wireless ones, no matter how advanced the wireless technology inside a wire-free handset is. While wireless technology inside a wireless phone is streaming compressed audio, for now, audiophiles are equally severe about preserving every little bit of musical detail. 

Even though many people stream music on streaming services like Spotify, and even those who have audio files on their phones frequently stream over Bluetooth, wired headphones may seem like a relic of the past. 

If you’re reading this, you know that a wired signal delivers higher quality than nearly any streaming signal. Maybe you need an adapter to use wired headphones with your cellphone these days, but many people think it is well worth the minor investment. 

Based on my research, I am here to discuss what kind of wired headphones are available and what factors to look for when purchasing one. Above all, I will give you my top 8 recommendations for the wired headphones on the market. So, keep on reading.

How to Choose the Best Wired Headphones?

If sound leaking isn’t a problem, selecting on-ear or over-ear headphones with open backs would provide a more extensive, natural sound. For public transport, choose a set of closed-back headphones, which seal the sound. 

On the other hand, some in-ear models are suitable for long-term use. If you plan on using your headphones at home, you should ensure they are comfortable. In-ear headphones are a good choice for on-the-go use, but you might want to select a pair of well-padded over-ears. 

Noise-canceling wired headphones are becoming rare as wireless noise-canceling headphones are now widespread. It has occurred simply because wired headphones are now prominent. Case and wire protection are frequently offered with wired headphones. Wired headphones are usually connected to devices using a 3.5mm headphone socket or an ‘aux in’ port. With specific wired models, a larger 6.35mm socket allows them to be connected to hi-fi separates. 

Factors to Consider While Buying The Wired Headphones

Source

Here are some things to keep in mind while purchasing a wired headphone set. 

Headphone Drivers

The most common driver styles in headphones and earphones are dynamic and planar magnetic types. The single full-range dynamic driver is located in each earcup’s enclosure. Audiophiles have recently become particularly interested in planar magnetic drivers, which use a magnetic field to vibrate a large flat surface. 

Planar magnetic headphones are praised for delivering detailed, precise audio across the entire frequency range, with minimal distortion and accurate bass response. Because these headphones’ enclosures are often large and uncomfortable to wear outside the house, those who employ even rarer and more expensive electrostatic drivers are also often uncomfortable. Planar magnetic in-ears are also uncomfortable and awkward to look at. 

Dynamic drivers or balanced armature drivers are usually seen in earphones. Because balanced armature drivers are incredibly tiny and lightweight, manufacturers may put several ones into a single earpiece, each of which covers a different frequency range. Two- or three-way stereo speakers produce a more accurate signature sound, but everything depends on how the devices are tuned. 

Each of the given choices has its strengths and weaknesses, but they are all equally good. 

Earphones vs. Earbuds

In simple terms, there are no in-ear headphones on this list. Because no earphones seal off the ear canal, there are many problems with sound quality—ear-to-ear balance and bass performance are negatively impacted. 

Small earphones that penetrate the ear canal and seal it off (also known as in-ear headphones) guarantee proper left/right channel balance and bass reproduction. While people may use these terms interchangeably, I will be referring to in-ear headphones exclusively for this post. 

Over-Ear vs. On-Ear Headphones

There are two basic headphone constructions: circumaural, which fit around and over the ear, with earcups that make a gentle seal against the skin and scalp, and supra-aural, which sit on the ear and don’t make a seal around it. It’s much simpler for most folks to recall over-ear and on-ear headphones, respectively, the same as these two designs. 

The majority of the headphones I recommend here are circumaural, as creating a seal is also a method to enhance the immersive experience. However, there are still some fantastic-sounding on-ear headphones. Comfort is a significant issue for many people. An over-ear pair is preferred in specific scenarios, such as recording/overdubbing in a studio, as they are less liable to leak audio. 

Open vs. Closed Headphones

Some over-ear headphones leak sound, even though most of them do not. These open-back designs are popular because the design allows ambient noise to enter the earphones and create an immersive listening experience. Why would you want to buy a pair of headphones that leaks sound? Open-back headphones allow more airflow around the drivers than most other models. 

Studio, office, and public settings are all better suited to closed headphones, which are less likely to leak audio. These headphones can also provide magic if that is what you desire. 

Choose Your Sound Signature

I aim to inform you which wired headphones I think sound best, so I have excluded ultra-bass-boosted models as they do not provide an accurate auditory experience. It has been a trend for years now to find massive-bass headphones, although it is not difficult to do so. The difficulty is finding accurate ones. 

When I mention “flat response” or “flat sound signature,” it may seem negative. A flat sound signature indicates that the sound is accurate or close to authentic and does not over boost or sculpt frequencies excessively. 

While boosting and sculpting are applied to all sound signatures to some degree, they all sound different if they didn’t. In recent years, accuracy-focused headphones and earphones have amplified bass depth as subwoofers and speakers have become better at creating deep bass rumbles. As soon as this is feasible, artists and producers desire to include more bass in their tracks. As long as the bass is clean, accurate, and not overly enhanced, it can be included in a sound signature. 

Headphone Cabling

It’s worth looking out for a removable cable, as it’s much easier and cheaper to replace than a whole set of headphones. Cables are frequently the cause of problems, and it’s, therefore, essential to spot a good one. 

Are you looking for headphones or earphones that let you take calls? Most audiophile or studio models don’t have microphones or remotes, but in recent years, some models offer two cables, including a microphone. 

You should also check if the cable includes a microphone and remote control. For wired headsets, you will often receive a jack adapter for stereo and pro-audio equipment. The adapter is usually included with 3.5 mm earphones, which can be purchased inexpensively online. 

Here are the best wired headphones available on the market. Let’s get started!

Comparison of Best Wired Headphones


IMAGE

MODEL

FEATURES

COST

RATING

Grado SR325x
1.8 m cable length, 340 g weight, 8 conductor super annealed copper wiring

CHECK PRICE

4.4 /5
Rode NTH-100
40mm driver, Over-ear type, 5Hz – 35kHz frequency response

CHECK PRICE

4.3 /5
Austrian Audio Hi-X15
1.4m cable length, Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available, No in-line remote and mic

CHECK PRICE

4.5 /5

Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X

1.8m, 3m cable length, Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available, No in remote and mic

CHECK PRICE

4.7 /5

Grado SR80x

1.8m cable length, Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available, No in-line remote and mic

CHECK PRICE

4.5 /5

AKG K52

40mm driver, Closed-back type, 32 Ohms impedance

CHECK PRICE

4.5 /5

Beyerdynamic Amiron

3m cable length, Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available, No In-line remote and mic

CHECK PRICE

4.3 /5

Beyerdynamic T1 (3rd Generation)

3m cable length, Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available, No in-line remote and mic

CHECK PRICE

4.3 /5

Let us explore each of the listed wired headphones.

Best Wired Headphones in 2022

Choosing the right wired headphone can be challenging, but this buying guide and listing 8 headphones can help. Here’s more information. 

1

Grado SR325x

One of the best award-winning headphone

Source

SPECIFICATIONS

  • 1.8 m cable length
  • 340 g weight
  • 8 conductor super annealed copper wiring
  • Unparalleled Sound
  • Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available
  • No in-line remote and mic

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

CHECK ON AMAZON

Positive
  • Tough build
  • Strong cable
  • Amazing sound quality
  • Great detail and dynamics
  • Amazing entertaining performance
Negatives
  • The new earpads might not suit everyone
  • Open-back design leaks sound

Grado’s Prestige headphones have been one of the finest produced by New York Grado over the last 30 years. Although the series has evolved, the latest ‘x’ generation models provide the same balance of quality and value as their predecessors, the SR325e. The SR325x is similar to the Award-winning SR325e model, except for the flat foam earpads, the updated cable, and the lighter-colored stitching on the padded headband. 

On the other hand, the SR325x delivers a superior, cleaner, and clearer listening experience than the SR325, thanks to its excellent detail and precision. If you want fabulous wired headphones and don’t mind having an open-backed design that leaks sound, the SR325x is the best choice. And at this price, they’re unbeatable. 

2

Rode NTH-100

Top affordable wired headphone

Source

SPECIFICATIONS

  • 40mm driver
  • Over-ear type
  • 5Hz – 35kHz frequency response
  • 349g weight

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

VIEW AT AMAZON

Positive
  • Well made
  • Comfortable headphone
  • Confident sound
  • Superb detail, well built, excellent value
Negatives
  • Some need more sonic excitement
  • ‘Cooltech’ ear cushions only effective up to a point

In my Rode NTH-100 review, I discovered that these headphones have everything you would hope for in a reasonably priced set. They deliver audio in an awe-inspiring way, while simultaneously, they are the opposite of modern. If you wish to hear every detail of your audio work, they are almost flawless—ideal for professional use. 

Not only is the NTH-100 not that expensive but it delivers a superb audio experience. Many headphones of this quality would cost five or ten times as much, which indicates how excellent these wired over-ear headphones are. You can purchase these affordable wired over-ear headphones for a great audio experience. 

3

Austrian Audio Hi-X15

Perfect wired headphones for people on a tight budget

Source

SPECIFICATIONS

  • 1.4m cable length
  • Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available
  • No in-line remote and mic
  • 255g weight

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

VISIT SITE

Positive
  • Amazing sense of timing
  • Clear, open presentation
  • Dig out plenty of detail
  • Well built
Negatives
  • Requires plenty of running in
  • Need partnering with suitable electronics

The first-ever wired headphone range from Austrian Audio, a Vienna-based firm founded by former AKG employees, is the Hi-X15. It provides a lot of decent choices, but we’d select the Hi-X15 first. They’re reasonably priced but don’t feel cheap. The Hi-X15 would shame a lot of cheap-looking competitors thanks to its classy design, which includes proper metal hinges and ‘slow retention’ memory foam earpads. 

The Hi-X15s maintain the soul of a song intact while delivering consistently high detail levels, making them an exceptional value at this price point. I wouldn’t advise coupling these with a suitable DAC/headphone amplifier, but if you do, you’ll be rewarded with one of the finest-sounding wired headphones. 

4

Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X

One of the best wired headphones

Source

SPECIFICATIONS

  • 1.8m, 3m cable length
  • Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available
  • No in remote and mic
  • 343g weight

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

CHECK ON AMAZON

Positive
  • Controlled nature
  • Amazing insight
  • Worth the money
  • Musically cohesive presentation
Negatives
  • Not comfortable

Beyerdynamic says the DT 900 Pro X is a top-notch studio headphone. We were confused by this description. After using them extensively, I still can’t figure out why these over-ear headphones wouldn’t be suitable for home use. They’re well constructed, comfortable, and sound excellent, so I like them a lot whether they’re studio-oriented or not. 

These Beyerdynamic headphones satisfy the ‘studio’ requirement by supplying all the resolution, stability, and control required to dissect a recording. Still, at the same time, they communicate the emotional impact of the music as effectively as anything I’ve heard at this level. These are a must-have headphones if you want a high-quality wired set of headphones at this price. You’ll be happy you bought them after you hear them. 

5

Grado SR80x

Open-backed wired headphones that is worth the money

Source

SPECIFICATIONS

  • 1.8m cable length
  • Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available
  • No in-line remote and mic
  • 220g weight

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

VIEW AT AMAZON

Positive
  • Light and comfortable headphone
  • Fantastic open-backs
  • Top-leading insight
  • Punchy, musical performers
Negatives
  • Very leaky

Grado’s SR80s are one of the company’s longest-running designs, which indicates how excellent these wired headphones are. Everything I enjoy about the SR80s—their expressive, rolling dynamics and superb insight—is present in the SR80xs. These headsets are born performers with a refined, clinically pure sound. 

I like the way these headphones feel. The headband of Grado’s SR80x is padded with leather, and the 1.8m cable is durable. In addition, the round foam ear pads should adequately protect most ears. Because they are open-backed, they are probably best utilized at home. 

Grado’s SR80x is one of the finest wired headphones available for this money; therefore, they are not required to be revolutionary. 

6

AKG K52

One of the top over-ear wired headphones 

Source

SPECIFICATIONS

  • 40mm driver
  • Closed-back type
  • 32 Ohms impedance
  • 110dB sensitivity
  • 18Hz-20kHz frequency response
  • 200g weight

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

VISIT SITE

Positive
  • High built-in quality
  • Incredible VFM
  • Best value for money
  • Comfortable headphone
  • Balanced sound
Negatives
  • Not the warmest sound
  • Cheap build

The AKG K52 delivers an enormous soundstage, excellent balance, and insane detail for a bargain price. 

Build quality is also a surprise, and although they are mostly plastic, the metal headband and super soft ear pads prevent them from feeling cheap. They are lightweight, and although adjustment is rudimentary, they will not fall off, particularly since you will not be raving or commuting in them anytime soon. 

The sound is a bit cold, but if you know about the AKG’s slight drawbacks before you buy, you’ll leave feeling like you stole the store. 

7

Beyerdynamic Amiron

Top high-end headphones with excellent sound quality

Source

SPECIFICATIONS

  • 3m cable length
  • Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available
  • No In-line remote and mic
  • 15 – 24,000 Hz frequency response
  • 40 ohms impedance
  • 340g weight

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

CHECK ON AMAZON

REASONS TO BUY

+ Great bass detail

+ Clear and organized sound

+ Handles treble well

REASONS TO AVOID

– Nothing of note

Beyerdynamic’s Amiron headphones are incredibly comfortable. Amiron headphones have Alcantara microfibres, micro velour earcups, and headbands (similar to suede), which are luxurious. You’ll enjoy hours of listening with these headphones. 

The sound quality is excellent as well. I particularly like Amiron’s clear midrange voices, precise timing, and how they handle complicated rhythms without issue. 

Grado’s are like the Amirons in that they are open-backed and leak sound like a sieve, so the usual public transport warning applies. If you have a high budget with you and want a beautiful set of headphones, the Amirons will satisfy you regardless of what type of music you like. 

8

Beyerdynamic T1 (3rd Generation)

Great set of headphones for immersive listening

Source

SPECIFICATIONS

  • 3m cable length
  • Bluetooth & Noise-canceling isn’t available
  • No in-line remote and mic
  • 360g weight

TODAY’S BEST DEALS

VISIT SITE

Positive
  • Clean, balanced sound
  • Well made
  • Comfortable headphone
  • High-precision sound
  • Perfect spatiality
Negatives
  • Requires top-class partners 

The original T1 open-back headphones are a touchstone for me regarding premium headphones. The new version is easier to drive for laptops and mobile devices. 

It provides the same sound quality as the originals but with fewer high frequencies and a smoother finish. The music is delivered with the same sense of power and authority, and vocals are provided with the same level of detail and nuance. 

The T1s are pleasantly shaped. Alcantara-covered headbands and generously velour-trimmed earpads make them comfortable for long listening sessions. These wired headphones are difficult to appreciate on a brief listen, but after a few days or weeks, you may find yourself charmed by them. 

FAQs on best wired headphones

1. Are wired headphones better quality?

Wired headphones function similarly as big speakers do. For personal listening, they are little speakers. Wireless headphone technology has improved significantly over the years. But, nothing compares to the quality of wired headphones. 

Analog signals are used in wired headphones to provide excellent sound quality. As analog signals handle more data than digital signals such as Bluetooth so, your audio will not have to undergo as much processing to reach you. Therefore, they can deliver it in its original quality without audio compression. 

Summary

I’ve finished my roundup of the top 8 wired headphones for 2022, and I am sure you’ve found what you’re looking for. My top recommendation is Rode NTH-100. 

While I would like you to read through my suggestions and decide what you desire to buy next, I want you to make an educated choice when you purchase the best wired headphones. 

Have a great time shopping! 

Mark Dalio

Mark Dalio

Mark is a tech-obsessed serial entrepreneur who also enjoys reading and writing. He has a strong urge to keep learning and talking about technology and thus decided to become an author.

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