The 8 Best Headphones for Piano Practice on the Market

Choosing the right digital piano headphones is nearly as important as selecting the right digital piano.  Both learning proficiency for beginner pianists and quality sound balance for advanced musicians rely on a superior instrument and quality accessories.

Before looking at even your first pair of headphones, take time to consider your environment, intended use, proficiency, and budget. Are the headphones for you or are you purchasing them for a child? Will you be using the headphones for practice or sound recording? Do you need to block out ambient noise from apartment neighbors or are you the one who wants to play at all hours without disturbing the peace?

It’s best to know going into your search exactly what you need your digital piano headphones to accomplish and how they enhance your overall experience with music. Once you have that figured out, it’s time to look at the market and hone your search down by a few critical components.

Below, please use the interactive guide below to see some of the best selling headphones on the market that can work with many digital pianos:

Sony MDR-7506
Audio-Technica ATH-M50x
Sennheiser HD 650
Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro
Sennheiser HD 800 S

What to Consider Most Before You Buy

Because headphones have such a broad spectrum for use, it’s important to narrow your search to those things which make a pair of headphones best for digital piano usage. Later I will share eight of the best headphones on the market for use with digital pianos but before I get to that, I wanted to talk about some of the things to consider when you are shopping around.

  • Sound

Although there are many features to consider when purchasing a set of headphones, none could be more important than sound quality itself. There are many things that contribute to quality of sound such as noise-cancelling technology and customizable settings. There is no definitive measure of sound quality and it is dependent upon the user to determine if the sound quality is equal to his or her preference.

  • Design

Wrapped up in the element of design is the aesthetic, comfort, and quality of materials. Comfort, for most, is the biggest concern out of the three since headphones may be worn for hours on end and ears can be very sensitive. Quality of materials directly effects the longevity of the product.

Cracking, peeling, and bending of materials can all affect not only the comfort of the headphones but also the sound quality. Aesthetic is not as important, especially if you intend to wear the headphones at home or in a private studio, but if you want your headphones to travel with you as part of your daily routine, consider the style in your shopping.

  • Added Features

Added features are those things which improve efficiency or enhance the luxury of your headphones. Some added features are becoming commonplace such as wireless and wired options and others are more complex augmentations for customized sound. Some added features can be a deal breaker so be sure you understand your intended use and exactly what you need to achieve high performance.

  • Value

Unless you are shopping without a budget, value is a necessary filter to use when shopping. Value is about finding the best quality sound, design, and added features for the best price. Using side-by-side feature comparisons and products review, such as this one, can make value comparison a little easier. 

  • Product Reviews

Shopping for digital piano accessories can be difficult, but searching for headphones is made harder by the sheer volume of options on the market. I’ve combed through some of the best options out there and rated them on sound, design, added features, and value to make the job a little easier for you.

So without further ado, here are the 8 best headphones for piano practice on the market:

1) Edifier H650

Let’s be honest. Not everyone is an audiophile and a lot of us just want something better than our Apple ear buds. The Edifier H650 will suit most with it’s simple design, simple features, low cost, and flexibility. These are highly comparable to the Sony MDRZX110NC noise cancelling headphones. Priced at about the same (under $30), they provide equitable sound and coverage but the Sony MDRZX110NC does allow a user to go wireless with batteries.

The H650 comes in white and four other colors (black, blue, pink, purple, and orange) making it one of the most diverse in style that we have on this list. The headband is a no-nonsense incased aluminum frame so while it looks neat, it’s not the best for comfort. The set does fold and swivel to make packing it easy. They are also extremely lightweight.

There are some downsides to this headphone set especially if you are an advanced pianist looking for powerful sound and studio-use components or if you are a frequent traveler/commuter looking to disconnect. The headset is lightweight because it’s light on features.

First of all, the H650s do not have the option to go wireless as there is no battery option. Second, there is no microphone option which will not matter if you typically use a studio-quality mic for recording but it means you cannot use this set with your mobile phone to take calls. Third, there is little to no noise cancelling technology involved beyond the cushioned ear cuffs.

So who is the H650 ideal for? Children and beginner pianists. The small over-ear cuff is perfect for little ears and the jewel tones will be a delight for kids of all ages. The low-tech, low-cost headset will not break the bank while also allowing children and beginners to enjoy isolated digital piano play and practice.

  • Sound – ★★★
  • Design – ★★★★
  • Added Features – ★★★
  • Value – ★★★★

Price – $26.99

Final Comments – The HD560s are great for children, beginner pianists, and those who are just looking for a more comfortable option than ear buds. They are low of features and technology but also extremely low cost.

2) Cowin E7

Cowin may not be a name that jumps immediately to mind, but their E7 headphones are some of the most popular with online retailers. 

If flashy chrome style is your go-to-look, then the E7 is your match and available in black, blue, purple, silver, and red, you have a lot of options to choose from. The materials are not the most durable or comfortable for long periods of time. The chrome is prone to showing finger prints which I am not a fan of.

Headphones are fully adjustable and the ear cuffs swivel. Controls on the ear cuff double as volume control and skip track. Bluetooth is a great feature but there is some latency with the Bluetooth engaged. The pairing is quick and easy and the range is average for Bluetooth, still there are better options out there if you want to use Bluetooth with your headphones.

The headphones come with your standard AUX cord, a microUSB, and a faux leather drawstring bag.

  • Sound – ★★★★
  • Design – ★★★
  • Added Features – ★★★
  • Value – ★★★★

Price – $69

Final Comments – Overall, this headset is a great value simply because it does provide quality sound and a lot of features, even if they are no top notch, for less than $100. This headphone set is for anyone who wants more for less.

3) SOL Republic Master Tracks X3

Although SOL Republic is relatively new to the scene as a headphone company, they have managed to produce a great series with the Master Track headphone set. The Master Tracks X3 is stylish, comfortable, and delivers studio quality sound.

The Master Tracks X3 shows off a predominately black matte finish with the stylized SOL logo on the ear cuffs. More comfortable than the original tracks, the X3 has an extremely flexible body with bendable headband which you can swap out for different colors to customize.

Due to the design and materials, the company and most users describe the headset as virtually indestructible which is a great feature if you are often lugging your headphones and digital piano around.

Previous versions of the Master Tracks were heavy-handed with the bass to give it a club-like sound but this version is well-balanced. It’s important to note that the X3 sounds best at higher volumes.

Admittedly, most of us probably do listen to our headphones at a higher volume but if you are considering a purchase for young pianists or are extremely cautious about your own hearing, these might not be the right option for you. Since the X3 does have a more robust bass line, it might not be suitable for strictly classical pianists but they can be useful for music production.

It has a split cord design which can be cumbersome but built into the cord is a control button that allows you to adjust volume, answer calls (if connected to your phone), pause/resume/skip music tracks, and if you press and hold, it will activate Siri on your Apple device.

The X3 also comes with a carrying pouch which is helpful since the set does not fold up for storage or travel.

  • Sound – ★★★★★
  • Design – ★★★★
  • Added Features – ★★★
  • Value – ★★★

Price – $149

Final Comments – As I mentioned early on, the SOL Republic Master Tracks X3 is all about delivering a superior sound experience matched by stylish design since whether it makes sense or not, headphones are often a fashion choice. For the price, these headphones are an excellent value.

4) Sennheiser HD 599

Apart from the product name being a handful, this headphone set is a simple pleasure for listeners looking for good sound quality in their headphones.

Style-wise, these headphones are sleek with durable plastic material and the over-ear padding is ultra-soft velour. Some of you might read “ultra-soft” and fear rapid degradation over time but the ear pads are replaceable which can be a nice feature. The set comes only in silver with a mix of near-chrome and matte finishes.

The tradeoff for these headphones is that they are open-back (openings on the back of the ear caps) which means it does not have the ability to isolate sounds as some of the noise canceling headphones do. While open-back headphones provide their own unique version of rich tones with a more natural sound, it does mean ambient noise such as traffic or children will pierce through. If you are going to use these headphones in a studio or have little ambient noise to worry with, this will not be an issue.

The 3m cable is detachable with a 6.3mm jack and a 3.5mm jack adaptor included. Keep in mind the cable is about 10’ long so it’s not very portable but since it is removable, if you have a great system for headphone and cable storage during travel, you may be fine.

  • Sound – ★★★★★
  • Design – ★★★★
  • Added Features – ★★★
  • Value – ★★★
  • Price – $199

Final Comments – For the price, the Sennheiser HD 599 is a great in-home, in-studio headphone set with quality sound. It’s not ideal for any other use because of the open-back design and it does not have the range of connectivity that many more expensive wireless sets have. You get what you pay for!

5) AKG N60 NC Wireless

If you are looking for a set of headphones that provide noise cancelling, portability, and good quality sound without spending a small fortune, the N60 NC just might be your best option.

The sound quality and noise cancelling are not the best on the market but they are more than satisfactory. The headphones work great at low volumes, as well. This feature may not seem like much for it’s important for young listeners who are prone to be more sensitive to higher volumes.

The design aspects are not much to write home about. It is durable and the plastic components make this headset lightweight and portable. There are controls located on the right ear (power, track, and volume) while the left ear houses the USB port and 3.5mm female socket.

With the headphones, the box includes a 3.5mm male-to-male cable, a microUSB cable, and a neoprene carrying case.

  • Sound – ★★★★
  • Design – ★★★
  • Added Features – ★★★
  • Value – ★★★★★

Price – $249

Final Comments – The AKG N60 does not aim to be the best on the market, but it does provide a step up in quality, comfort, and features for the value. It’s an excellent product in the middle of the market.

6) Sony WH-1000XM3

Sony’s competition to Bose’s QuietComfort 35II, the WH-1000XM3 is a remarkable pair of headphones. At a price competitive to the Bose set, this is arguably one of the best noise cancelling sets on the market right now.

There are two aspects of this headphone set that make it a great option for digital piano practice. For starters, the sound quality is amazing and the noise cancelling technology allows you to hear your own play without the distraction of ambient noise. Second, the wireless listening option allows you to use the control interface on the set which works really well for quick adjustments with the touch of a finger.

The two downsides really are the relative uselessness of the EQ settings. For some these settings might improve the overall experiences but I found them to be unnecessary. The factory settings are excellent for sound quality. The other downside is the price. Although it is a great value in its price range, it is quite pricey for a pair of headphones.

Their sleek, modern design features a textured, matte finish to the exterior material and the cushion for the over-ear piece is comfortable. It is predominately made of plastic which makes it lightweight, but the material is durable. The headphones come in black or champagne.

The headphone set comes with a carrying case, an airplane adapter, a microUSB cable, and 3.5mm male-to-male cable.

  • Sound – ★★★★★
  • Design – ★★★★
  • Added Features – ★★★★★
  • Value – ★★★★

Price – $349

Final Comments – Because of its sound quality and added features such as excellent noise cancelling technology and longer lasting battery life, the Sony WH-1000XM3 are a great value in its price range. These headphones are excellent for audiophiles who have the budget to buy quality, style, and features.

7) Beats Studio3 Wireless

Although the Sony WH-1000XM2 is the best in this price range, the Beats Studio3 Wireless headset remains a popular set and it needs to be included in this review. Although not significantly different in exterior design from the previous Beats series, the sound quality has been boosted with this rendition which makes it worthy to mention as well.

The noise cancelling technology has been improved with the Pure Adaptive Noise Canceling (Pure ANC) which as it suggests, adapts to your environment and the sound levels around you.

The battery life for the Beats Studio3 is significantly improved with about 20 hours of usage in full ANC mode and up to 40 hours if noise cancelling is turned off. Like many other headphone sets, the Beats Studio3 has a rapid charge option called Beats Fast Fuel which give you an additional three hours of usage with 10 minutes of charging.

One of the Beats Studio3 Wireless headphones biggest drawbacks is it’s bulkiness when folded for travel. Although this is not specific to its use for digital piano headphones, if you plan to use it for commuter or plane travel, it’s certainly a factor.

The price as a factor in purchasing headphones for digital piano practice is not a great value, but if you also plan to pair your headphones with an Apple device, the added convenience of the Apple W1 chip (enables easy, instant Bluetooth set up with iOS devices).

The headphones come in white, red, blue, and matte black as base colors but you can fork over a little more for their special edition colors, shadow gray and porcelain rose.

  • Sound – ★★★★★
  • Design – ★★★★
  • Added Features – ★★★
  • Value – ★★★

Price – $349 (although sale prices are starting to emerge)

Final Comments – Compared to the noise-cancelling technology and sound quality of the Sony WH-1000XM2 for the price, the Beats Studio3 is not the better value; however, the battery life, variety of colors, and Apple Bluetooth integration might be enough to tempt.

8) Sennheiser Momentum 2.0

The Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 combines the sound quality and technology of Beats Studio3 Wireless and Sony WH-1000XM2 but with upgrades. The comfort and style, noise cancelling technology, and connectivity are improved with the Momentum 2.0.

In terms of style, the Momentum 2.0 is sleek, modern, and yet comfortable. The large, ergonomic memory foam ear cups make for long periods of comfortable use. The headband is stainless steel which is very durable.

The Momentum 2.0 uses NoiseGard for it’s hybrid active noise cancelling technology. It works incredibly well. Active listening noise canceling technology works by using microphones in the ear cuffs that listen to ambient noise and response. Combined with the larger ear cuffs, the noise cancelling technology is eliminates almost all ambient sound.

Bluetooth connectivity is a plus as more and more digital pianos provide the same advanced connectivity. The Momentum 2.0 delivers high quality sound through its Bluetooth connection so it works just as well as the cabled connection. You can also be connected to 2 devices at the same time which can be very efficient.

The headphone set includes a 1.4m audio cable, 2.5 mm low-profile angled plug, USB charging cable, in-flight adapter, and carrying case. 

  • Sound – ★★★★★
  • Design – ★★★★★
  • Added Features – ★★★★
  • Value – ★★★★

Price – $499 (although sale prices are starting to emerge)

Final Comments – Although this is an expensive headphone set, the quality, design, technology, and connectivity match the price tag. If you are a professional or advanced musician who wants to have the same experience through your headphones as you will through your digital piano’s speakers, this is your best bet.

Something to keep if you’re still a bit undecided is the fact that the SOL Republic has promised two new headphone sets in 2018, the Soundtrack Wireless and Soundtrack Pro Wireless.

Final Thoughts

There is no perfect option when it comes to headphones, but there are options that can meet your individual needs. The eight headphone sets reviewed in this article fit a variety of needs, proficiency levels, scenarios, and budgets. Everyone hears music in their own unique way and it’s all about finding your fit.

If you consider the sound, design, features, and value, you should be well on your way to making an informed choice. Most importantly, stick within your budget and don’t be fooled into believing that superior sound only belongs to the most expensive option on the market.

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