Latest DJ Headphones: 5 Of The Best

Last updated 23 March, 2018

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Top 5 Headphones
We round up our five choice DJ headphones from the past year in this article.

DJs need two things: tunes and a pair of headphones. Show up at a gig without one or the other, and you’re screwed because these are two DJ essentials that a venue never supplies. There’s a reason why, despite all the changes in DJ technology from analogue to digital, headphones have remained a staple in every DJ’s bag.

In this article we round up the five best headphones from the past year…

Top 5 DJ Headphones:

1. Sennheiser HD8 DJ

Sennheisher-HD8-DJ-Headphones

Sennheiser released a line of dedicated DJ headphones (the original Sennheiser HD 25s became DJ classics by accident, as they were meant to be all-around headphones). The HD8 DJ is its top-of-the-line model, and it shows: it’s got a predominantly-metal construction that’s reasonably compact, has excellent sound, and comes with the right amount of premium accessories for the gigging DJ.

Price: US$299
Pros: Rounded, clear bass perfect for beatmatching and mixing. Comfortable to use whether worn on your head, or hanging from your neck and mixing with one ear cup.
Cons: Pricey, as you’d expect from a top-shelf headphone model.
Read the full review: Review & Video: Sennheiser HD8 DJ Headphones
Buy it now: Amazon


2. Pioneer HDJ-2000MK2

HDJ2000MK2-Main-Image-1204x640

Pioneer DJ’s HDJ headphone series is a workhorse: the HDJ-1000 and HDJ-1500 are popular models for both beginners and intermediate DJs. However, the pinnacle of DJ monitoring, at least as far as the Japanese company is concerned, is the flagship HDJ-2000MK2. It’s sleek, is incredibly sturdy, and comes with the premium trappings you’d expect from a top-shelf model, including a zippered case and detachable headphone cables. The sound isolation on the HDJ-2000MK2 is some of the best we’ve heard as far as DJ headphones go, making it ideal for DJing in even the nosiest of club environments.

Price: US$349
Pros: Deep bass, clear highs. Excellent isolation even in noisy booths, with a fantastic build to boot. The most “pro” looking on this list, in our opinion.
Cons: The biggest spend in the entire lot (you’d probably come to expect this now whenever something is Pioneer DJ-branded). Has a slightly bulkier design than most models in this roundup.
Read the full review: Review & Video: Pioneer DJ HDJ-2000MK2 Headphones
Buy it now: Amazon


3. Sennheiser HD 25 Plus

HD-25 plus

Revered by DJs and sound engineers alike, the original Sennheiser HD 25 has been the go-to on-ear headphones for decades. The Sennheiser HD 25 Plus is an update of the classic, and comes with extra velour earpads, a right-angled plug, a carrying pouch, and an extra coiled cable to avoid snags in the DJ booth.

Price: US$199
Pros: An industry standard with a timeless look and great sound for the price – the Rolex Submariner of headphones, if you will.
Cons: Doesn’t fold into a ball or more compact shape for travel, unlike other headphones in this list.
Buy it now: Amazon


4. TMA-2 Modular Headphone System

TMA-2

The original TMA-1 by AIAIAI made waves when it was first introduced, thanks to its iconic design that’s more akin to a monolith sculpture than a pair of flashy headphones (all the rage back then, thanks to Beats By Dre). Oh, and it sounded great for mixing dance music, too.

The TMA-2 quite literally brings all the best bits of the original TMA-1 and all its other successive variants because it’s a completely customisable headphone: you assemble it online via the AIAIAI website, picking out components such as the speaker drivers, ear pads, cables, and so on.

Price: From US$145
Pros: Lets you create your own signature headphone using DNA from the TMA range of cans.
Cons: It’s a DIY set, so not for those who don’t like putting things together or making a lot of decisions (ie not for the “off-the-shelf” lot).
Read the full review: Review & Video: AIAIAI TMA-2 Modular Headphones
Buy it now: TMA-2 Website


5. RCF Iconica By Benny Benassi

RCF -iconica-dj-headphones

RCF is a loudspeaker brand that’s well-known in pro audio circles since the 1980s. Its recent foray into DJ headphones produced one of our favourite headphones as of late – the RCF Iconica By Benny Benassi is a compact, on-ear model that screams “modern”. It comes in two colours: white and “pepper black”, which is a mix of black and bronze. It ships with a zippered clamshell case, a cable with a remote, and a cable with a coiled end.

Price: US$178
Pros: The bass is rich, the build quite solid, and looks are outstanding. At just under US$180, the RCF Iconica By Benny Benassi is also budget-friendly: a sound and style upgrade in one.
Cons: On-ear models don’t block noise as well as headphones that go around your ear, so you might be cranking these up louder than usual in noisy DJ booths.
Read the full review: Review & Video: RCF Iconica By Benny Benassi Headphones
Buy it now: Amazon

Finally…

These are the best headphones we’ve used so far this year. The BPM Show is right around the corner, along with the holidays (gee, where did the time go?) so we’re likely to see some new models introduced in the coming months. As ever, we’ll review and pick out the best ones for you.

What new DJ headphones do you think should be a part of this list? Do you have any recommendations apart from what we’ve posted? Share them with us below.

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