Hey! Guys hope you all are doing well, and in this comparison guide, I am going to point out my top picks for cheap open-back gaming headphones. Now are you really looking for good open-back headphones for gaming? Then, you are at the right place.
Audiophile like you can me crave for more sound quality. With open-back headphones, you can get immersive audio quality as compared to other gaming headsets.
However, open-back headphones are not so good at positional accuracy, often required in competitive games like CSGO and Rainbow Six Seige. I will find and review such open-back headphones which have are good at positional accuracy.
All that we gamers expect from the headsets is the purely natural feel of the game world around us. So for this sole purpose, the headphones should be picked very carefully to ensure the best experience. Fortunately, open-back headphones are capable of fulfilling this need.
Before we move into the list, we should know what open-back headphones are. Open-back Headphones are designed so that the sound from the outside world can get into the user's ears, and the noise from the headphones can also get to the outside world a little bit.
These headphones are mostly used for studio-based work, but we gamers can also benefit from them.
These are perfect headphones for games like DOTA 2, Witcher, Assassin's Creed, or GTA series. Moreover, they are also perfect for you if you crave more sound quality.
These are my Picks for the Best Open-Back headphones for gaming purposes.
We all know what Sennheiser is capable of. The "Sennheiser Game" was launched specifically for gamers. As this series was intended for gaming, Sennheiser has put more benefits for gamers.
The Sennheiser Game One is an Open-Back gaming headset with a good quality microphone attached to it. I found this headset to provide exceptional audio quality and good positional accuracy with the Stereo Sound effect.
The Sennheiser Game One comes with two 3.5mm TRRS cables; one is dual 3-meters while the other is 1.2-meters. Although the headset has a plastic build, it felt a lot more sturdy to me. Thanks to the plastic build, the headset is very lightweight, making it easy to wear them for long gaming sessions.
Even though the headband can be adjusted, I had to expand it to the full extent for a proper fit. The headphone came with velvet ear pads which felt a little warm after some while.
The microphone is attached to the left earcup. Which can be rotated to mute it.
In general, the headphone did a pretty job in providing a good level of comfort.
Since this is a gaming headset, we tested it by typing on a mechanical keyboard with talking over the mic at the same time. The microphone did pick up the keyboard keypresses, but it did not distort our voice's audio quality.
We also tested this headset's microphone on the Android S8, Windows PC, and iPad. And, surprisingly, it remained clear in all the devices. Which qualifies perfectly for a gaming headset. Moreover, the microphone on this headset is passive noise-canceling.
The headphones have an open-back design. So you will be able to hear your neighbors screaming and yelling on the different Appartement. You will not be able to get more punchy and strong Bass compared to Closed-Back headphones.
On the other hand, since they are open-back headphones, they provide a more open and wide soundstage.
I was not surprised when the music sounded a little warm and dark with these headphones since they are from Sennheiser. And, that is because their High-end frequencies response (AKA Treble) is more recessed. Fortunately, a high recessed treble leads to a more comforting listening experience on long gaming sessions.
Absolutely, Suppose you do not care about super punchy bass and want to experience the depth of open-world games like Skyrim. In that case, this headset is good for you. However, keep a note that the ear cups may get a little warmer after some time of use.
Audio-Technica has not failed to impress us with their headsets. The Audio-Technica ADG1x is an Open-Air headset suitable for gamers. Thanks to their high-end sound quality and wide sound stage.
The Audio-Technica ADG1x came with a 1.2-meters long cable with a gold plated 3.5mm mini plug. A gooseneck microphone can also be found on the headphone. The microphone is not removable, which could have added more value to the product.
The only problem with this headset is the size. The Over-Ear design of this headset has massive ear cups. Which can be a little problematic for VR users. But, do not let the size misguide you. The Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1x is super light with a weight of 285 grams.
The plastic build quality might feel a little cheaper; however, the headset is very robust and strong. The thing I liked the most about them is the comfort. The plush material padding is super comfortable. Also, the 3D-wind support (as the manufacturers call it) does a good job reducing the weight on the head.
How I hate the control box on this headphone. It only provides volume control and a mute mic button, which are not very responsive.
While testing the microphone, we found out that it is relatively neat and suitable for online gaming. The detailed audio captured from this microphone is full of texture. The microphone is super-cardioid with a frequency response of 100Hz to 12,000Hz.
As compared to the Sennheiser Game One, the Audio-Technica's mic is not as much good. If your purpose is to use this headset for streaming, you might need a separate microphone.
Since they are Open-Back headphones, the Soundstage is very wide. The game sounds more free and immersive and not too close to your ears.
The audio quality is not that good for listening to music or audio editing, but it is good for gaming. The 53mm, sound driver unit reproduces sounds with neat and clear quality. The sound quality is neutral and not Bass heavy. On the other hand, the highs are crisp without being painful.
You can. However, I would definitely go with the Sennheiser Game One. It provides more microphone quality in a lesser price range. As for sound quality, they definitely sounded better than the Sennheiser Game One.
The Fidelio X3 is among the top-line headphones in the Open-back industry. The well-known Youtuber, Jacksepticeye is using the previous model Fidelio X2 for his videos and streams. The Fidelio X3 is tuned to provide good and punchy Bass with fatigue-free Treble. This audiophile headphone is suitable for music lovers, but gamers can also benefit from its good sound quality.
Just like the Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1x, the Fidelio X3 comes with 2 headbands, one for support and one for sit atop your head. However, this headphone does a pretty dang job in reducing the pressure points on the head, unlike the ATH-ADG1x.
The Fidelio X3 has pretty big shoes to fill in, and it comes with a price range of around $300 on Amazon. The Fidelio X3 looks more modern and latest than the previous model, Fidelio X2hr. They look more premium, but it comes down to personal preference.
The Scottish leather used for the padding makes them super comfortable on the head, of which the included card (in the box) tells you as much.
There is no swivel on the earcups, which was a little turnoff for me. The big news is that they switched from the single 3.5mm jack to the dual 3.5mm jack, which is a good upgrade from the previous model. A balanced 2.5mm TRRS cable is also provided with the headphone.
The big turnoff for me was the connection design. The Fidelio X3 requires the cables to be connected to both earcups, which can get hard to find the Left and Right sides properly.
The good thing about them is that I didn't require any amp for them to work properly. The plush memory foam on the earpads provides excellent comfort. And, what I liked the most is that they are removable ear pads.
The Fidelio X3 comes with 50mm driver units, which provides more progressive and controlled roll-off over mids and highs while maintaining good quality. I was able to hear the voices and dialogues in the games very easily.
On the other hand, the Bass was not very appealing. Philips could have added more weight to the Bass quality of the headphone. The Fidelio X3 is certified as Hi-Res headphones because of the wide frequency response of 5Hz to 40,000Hz, which is more than most standard gaming headsets.
What qualifies them to be good gaming headphones is the soundstage. The wide and open soundstage on the Fidelio X3 provides more depth to the gaming world while maintaining an excellent sound positional accuracy, even though they are open-back.
If you already own the Fidelio X2 and wondering if they are worthy enough to upgrade, then Yes, go for it. Philips had made efforts to make them safer and more balanced headphones than the Fidelio X2 and made them more generic. The only thing to worry about is the microphone, you will have to get a separate microphone for your online games.
However, you can also check the Hifiman Deva. They are a good competitor for Philips X3.
HIFIMAN Deva is currently the best-selling headphones on the market with almost every feature a gamer or a studio worker needs. In features, you name it they have it. The best feature among them is that you can easily switch them from USB Type C to 3.5mm jack to totally wireless.
his is a new design from HIFIMAN. However, it fits perfectly with most people. The Build quality of Hifiman Deva is excellent. As the image suggests, the headphone is very durable.
And speaking of the image, it speaks everything. The clamping force of the headphone's arc is very on point. They stay perfectly on the head without applying too much force on the ears. And the fabric used on the padding of the earcups is also very comfortable.
The Hifiman Deva uses Bluetooth technology for wireless connectivity.
Deva uses a unique configuration unit, promising excellent sound quality. With their rated impedance as low as 18 ohms, they make sure that you are getting the more efficient and more accurate sound than ever.
The positional accuracy that they provide is really exceptional. Which makes it easy for gamers to locate and get the upper hand over their opponents.
The low frequencies of the headphone are really good. They can produce excellent bass for music lovers. The highs and the Mids are also very fine with crispier, natural, and decent audio quality.
The Bluemini Device is also provided with the headphone. This black-colored device fits into the 3.5mm plug on the headphone. It works as an amplifier, and exceptionally increase the audio quality of the headphone.
The 7-10 hours long battery life also comes in handy with many applications. Most gamers don't game for 7-10 hours long in a single session. Just like me, they tend to take breaks between the session (which is however recommended for your gaming performance and mental health); therefore, the battery life is good.
However, apart from gaming, I found the battery life a little low on many occasions. But, you can always switch to the wired mode, if the battery runs out.
The Hifiman Deva comes with a built-in microphone. In general, the microphone quality is good enough for normal calls and chats. You can use it for in-game chats on Discord. But, you will be better off with a separate microphone for gaming.
Yes, If you want an audiophile wireless headphone with aesthetic looks for your gaming. The Hifiman Deva comes with a Bluemini device that works as an amplifier to increase sound quality. The 7-8 hours of a battery may be a little turnoff. But, it is enough for most gamers.
These Over-Ear, Open-Back headsets are fashioned to satisfy their user's comfort and suitable for long gaming sessions. Weighing approximately 235 grams, these headphones have low clamping force around the ear with a good level of comfortability.
The user can easily wear them for 7-8 hours without any discomfort. However, using a headphone for that long is not recommended.
A good microphone combined with your AKG Pro Audio K702 will make a beastly duo.
The AKG K702 has very solid build quality, but the portability with these headphones is very limited. These cannot be folded. In general, The K702 has decent looks, which might not be appealing for most, but enthusiasts will love it.
As you can see, the headband and supporting arcs are separate. The bottom headband (that sits on your head) reduces the pressure points on the head. The headband is very flexible. And, the body feels like it can stay intact for 3-4 years easily.
The removable cables are plugged at the bottom of the right earcup. Even more, the replaceable earpads also add more value to the product.
What I love about them is the mini XLR cable used for the connection. It increases the efficiency of exchanging the sound signals from your device to headphones.
The AKG K702 has a rated impedance of 62ohms. You will need an amplifier or sound card with them. However, it will exceptionally increase the sound quality.
Keep in mind that these headphones are intended for studio workers. Therefore, they provide more neutral and natural sound quality.
These headphones are very efficient in producing audio with the right sound stage to back their image. AKG K702 has neutral bass. They were not designed to boost the bass. But their ability to locate sound's source is good enough to give you a good gaming experience.
Their impressive sound quality is why they are listed in our list of headphones for classical music.
The AKG K702 covers a wide range of frequency responses. Therefore, they cover the Lows and Highs perfectly. However, I found the Bass to be more natural and not punchy.
These headphones are made to give more clear acoustics and vocals. They can give great help to competitive gamers (especially FPS games). However, they are best for storyline games like Assassin's Creed.
You bet. if you are looking for an Open-Back headphone with natural sound quality and maximum durability. Then AKG is the way to go. However, keep a note that you will need an amplifier or sound card for them to work properly. And, the Bass is not punchy; it is in the fine line between neutral and natural.
Sennheiser's HD600 really stands out for its name. They feature sound quality, which is simply incredible. The HD600 comes with neodymium ferrous magnets that maintain the high sensitivity and excellent dynamic range of the producing sound.
The HD600 are featuring computer-optimized magnets that reduce harmonic and intermodulation distortion. And, with its good stereo sound quality, The HD600 becomes an ideal choice for both gamers and studio workers.
However, their high impedance rate will need an amplifier or sound card to work properly.
The Sennheiser HD600 comes in a very decent-looking and simple box. On picking the headphones up, you will notice a weird texture on the top of the headband, which felt like kitchen cabinets on the first look.
The notable thing is that they are very lightweight. The headband can be adjusted according to your head size. The thick padding on the earcups and headband makes them super comfortable.
The right amount of clamping force, lightweight, and padding makes them the most comfortable headphones on the list. However, the structure of the wires is really messed up. The wires need to be connected to both earcups.
The Sennheiser HD600 has a normal soundstage for an open-back headphone.
The Bass response is intermediate and responsive, while the highs are extremely good. So, if you are a fan of Hip-Hop music and love to play open-world games, then they will do a good job for you.
After listening to them, I would definitely ditch Sennheiser Game One. They sound natural and balanced. Some headphones provide better Highs, while others are good at Lows. That is not the case with HD600s. They do a good job in providing good Highs, Lows, and Mids.
Suppose you want more comfort and balanced sound quality with excellent Highs, Mids, and Lows. Then, Sennheiser HD600 is safe to go. However, keep in mind that they require an amplifier or sound card to work properly.
Specially designed for long-term sessions, these headphones are inspired and based upon their cousin AKG K702 with the more superior build quality and same dynamic drivers. The AKG K7XX have a detachable cable of 3m in length. This set has a unique black body with a red silhouette.
The great thing about these headphones is their sound stage that makes you closer to the sound you're listening to. AKG K7XX gives an overall good sound in terms of treble, bass, and other factors. And about its accuracy, they are very excellent in locating the source of the audio.
AKG K7XX have an impedance of 62 ohms, which is more than enough. With their good surround sound, AKG K7XX stands out from other top-notch open-back headsets.
ATH-AD700X is designed to give a fully natural sensation to the user producing no sense of pressure on the ear. Equipped with 3D wing support this set makes sure that users can use them for an extended period without compromising the comfort.
ATH-AD700X is super light-weighted and comes with a highly conductive OFC Single-sided cord that prevents it from tangling. Furthermore, these headphones are also very durable and can stay intact for a very long time.
The 53mm driver makes sure that the sound produced has clear treble and good bass. In terms of its efficiency and accuracy of producing sound, it comes with 38 ohms of impedance. Like other headphones in this list, these headphones are also very good at locating and separating the position of the sound.
The golden Jack given with the set can also play an important role in the quality of audio it produces.
You can find my detailed review of Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X here.
DT 990 PRO is a Professional open-back, over-ear headphones good for sound mixing, editing, listening to music, and gaming as well. The DT 990 Pro has a very great name in the headphones industry, and rightly so.
The fabric used for the padding of these headphones is also very great and comfortable. In terms of comfortability, these headphones give a relaxing and cozy feel when worn. It can help you play games more relaxingly, as we all know that online games can get frustrating.
These headphones are also very durable. They can withstand the harsh use of an angry gamer for a very long period. The build of these headphones is solid and they are made of good durable material.
DT 990 PRO gives good surround sound, with excellent and clear treble and excellent solid bass. Fashioned with 250 ohms of impedance, the DT 990 Pro works significantly greater when it is paired with a good sound card or an amplifier.
DT 990 PRO gives a good experience when it comes to sound accuracy. You can locate and determine the sound easily with these headphones, making them good for both gaming and studio work.
In terms of comfort, DT 990 PRO has soft velour ear pads and gives the option to replace them, which adds more durability to the set.
AKG K245 gives excellent comfort to the user by its over-ear, open-back design. This foldable headset gives you the ability to carry your studio-quality headphones everywhere you want with a size that almost fits all backpack or laptop bags.
Its soft ear pads make them comfortable and a headband with self-adjusting gives them the ability to fit almost every head size. The unique design of their separate supporting arcs with a headband inside also adds more points to its comfortability and appearance.
In terms of sound quality, AKG K245 gives the best audio quality as compared to its price. This set gives almost every function that a high-end headset has to offer. From 50mm transducer to surround sound effect to the good sound stage. This set stands out among the top headsets.
The lows with these headsets are very heavy and they give good bass. The Mids and Highs also feature clear, decent, and natural audio quality with the excellent treble. Making them an exceptionally good option for audio mixers, music & movie lovers, and gamers.
You just need to pair AKG K245 with a good gaming microphone and you are good to go.
Samson SR850 is the Semi-open back headphone that proved suitable for mastering, mixing, tracking, playback, and as well as gaming.
Their good surrounding quality tracking capabilities make them a good option for gamers. Samson SR850's linear frequency response is the reason for their precision and accuracy, hence suitable for critical mixing of sounds of and tracking the opponent in multiplayer games.
SR850 provides a smooth and sweet sound with warm and tight bass thanks to 50mm neodymium drivers. As for comfort, these headphones have soft velour ear cushions and have a self-adjusting band, so you don't have to worry about the proper fit. It can easily be said the best headphone under $50.
As for the build quality, Samson SR850 is capable of surviving for a very long time with the typical daily usage of an average gamer. They can also withstand mediocre impacts, making them very durable.
From light-weighted and sleek design to top-notch sound quality, Philips SHP9500 is stepping up the game to another level.
It comes with 50mm neodymium drivers to ensure maximum sound quality. Philips SHP95000 has 32 ohm of rated impedance, which makes them very good at producing the sound efficiently with lesser energy required.
Furthermore, the sound that these headphones produce is very intimidating. From great bass to clear vocals, this headphone does a good job in satisfying its user.
Also, as all gamers require, the positional accuracy with these headphones is better than most of the headphones in this list. That's because these headphones were exclusively made for gaming.
Philips SHP9500 comes with exceptional durability because of its durable steel headband. These open back, over-ear headphones are equipped with a comfortable headband cushion with ear cushions made to keep your ears fresh as ever and are engineered to fit naturally on the listener's ear so that the audio signals are channeled directly to the ear to create a dynamic and authentic experience.
AKG K240 are professional studio headphones built as Semi-Open back type. This headset wide dynamic range, increased sensitivity, high sound levels, and solid bass suitable for all music lovers, studio workers, and gamers alike.
Its 55 ohms rated impedance may require good sound drivers or an amplifier to sound good. but when provided their sound quality increases significantly. Not to worry either, they sound really good without any sound card too.
Like any other headphone on the list, AKG K240 are also good in locating and separating the audio to a great degree.
AKG's K240 offers replaceable ear pads and detachable cable, which makes them more durable. Its self-adjusting headband with a flexible steel structure makes sure that you'll never have to worry about fitting. Its flexible yet durable fabric is the reason for them to be more durable; furthermore, its gimble-type suspension makes them suitable for wearing it for an extended period comfortably without any ear fatigue.
Open-back headphones are manufactured in such a way that they let air pass through their earcups. Now it has many advantages, like air moving through its earcups allows us to wear them for an extended period without any ear fatigue or ear sweatiness.
The atmosphere also helps with the sound stage of the headphones and makes them feel broader and more natural. That is because unlike closed-back headphones, the sound does not bounce back in the ear cup. Instead, it flows away. This reduces the bouncing of audio, makes it feel natural and realistic, and also helps to increase the accuracy of the sound.
Open back are suitable for studio-based work as well as gaming. But it can be problematic to use them in a noisy environment, let's say like in gaming zones.
Open back allows you to hear anyone from the outside world. Now, this is an advantage, and also a disadvantage depends on how you look at it.
You should also check "How headphones can affect your Lifestyle".
Now there are some features that a buyer should keep in mind before jumping into buying headphones. These features define how the headphone is going to perform.
So we already narrowed down the list of sets for you. Now you just need to find your perfect game.
You can also check "How to make your headphones sound Louder".
The impedance of a headphone is measured in ohms. Now ohms are defined as "the electrical resistance between two points."
The headphones with low impedance are accessible to power up; thus, they allow the signals to pass through in a more efficient manner, which is music.
Now basically, what this means is that when we have a headset with high impedance, it means they have more electrical resistance; thus they need more voltage to be able to function correctly.
Whereas low impedance headphones have low resistance, and less energy is required to power them up. Now, this is the significant difference between high impedance headphones and low impedance headphones.
Sensitivity is how loud and how effectively an electrical signal is getting converted from the source device (that could be your PC, Console, Mobile device).
We should be looking for headphones with higher sensitivity because the higher the SPL (Sound Pressure Level), the higher the sound, and the amplification of the sound will be.
"The difference between the headphones and making music, it's like, okay, I have a new business here that I'm proud of, but my soul still remains in the music-making process." Dre. Dre.
Concluding everything, I would say that Open-back headphones can also be great when it comes to gaming. You just need to pair them with a quality microphone and you are good to go.
However, it is not that simple. You need to choose carefully among the list of many Open-back headphones. That's because not every one of them is good for gaming.
If you like this content then please share it with your friends as well. They might as well be looking for something like it.
Simon here is an audiophile that loves to try out new audio equipment and loves to listen to different genres of music. Being an active student of Audio Electronics, He is more than capable of discussing different elements of headphones. A Powerful Music Can Change The Tone Of Your Heart, That Is The Real Power Of Music.