Best Headphones for Bass Guitar Reviews – Full Depth, Rich Tone

Woman playing bass guitar

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Introduction


MAKE LIFE CLICK
Best Headphones for Bass Guitar
2022

Bass is my primary instrument, and I’ve heard every joke about it in my ten-odd years of playing and performing. The truth is, bassists, hold the reins of their bands, preventing them from overplaying, underplaying, or messing up the tempo. They need to be perfectly in sync with everyone else, and to do that, they need to hear what’s going on around them.

Live gigs and rehearsals aside, bass players need to “practice” their sense of hearing at home more than anybody else – not everyone is born with the ability as weird as being able to perceive floor-level frequencies.

Years spent right next to my amp and cabs did a number on my hearing, and I don’t want my fellow bassists to go through the same tribulations. That’s why I want to show you some of the best headphones for bass guitar players available in the current market. Let’s start with my top pick of the day:

Best Headphones for Bass Guitarists Reviewed

KLH Ultimate One Open-Back Over Ear Headphones

Editor’s Pick: Classy, vintage-style headphones that sound as great as they look. Engineered to cater to the pickiest bass players’ needs.

5/5
Price Range: $$$
Brand: KLH
KLH Ultimate One Open-Back Over Ear Headphones
See Price on Amazon
…and another 29 Reviews

The Download

KLH may not be as popular as Sennheiser, Sony, or Audio-Technica, but pro bass players across all compass points are more than familiar with Ultimate One headphones. In short words, these cans boast an absolutely massive sound, full-spectrum tone, and elegant design.

It would be an understatement to say that you’ll be the main talk point of your shows with them on, as the vintage cups scream “audiophile” all over. With them on, you’ll have an opportunity to show your audience (and bandmates) that bass players can be as classy as guitarists, if not even more so.

Funnily enough, this is the only “one” set of headphones that the brand ever released, hence the name “Ultimate One”.

These headphones are sturdy as a brick house, featuring zebrawood-made cups and a band covered with exquisite lambskin. Being one of the rarest leather materials, lambskin is largely to blame for Ultimate One’s hefty price tag.

The Specs

  • Weight:  12 oz
  • Connectivity type:  Wired
  • Frequency range:  18 Hz to 22 kHz
  • Driver size:  50 mm Beryllium drivers
  • Battery life:  N/A

Stuff I like

  • Bigger-than-life sound
  • Audiophile-grade sonic performance
  • Rich, full-bodied tone with strong bass accents
  • One of the best-looking headphones available
  • Built to withstand years of use if given proper maintenance

Stuff I like less

  • Pricey
  • Fairly low availability
Overall Rating: 5 / 5 Stars

What’s in the Box:

  • KLH Ultimate One headphones
  • 2m detachable braided cable
  • 0.25-inch adapter

Sony WH-XB910N Extra Bass Noise Cancelling Bluetooth Headphones

Contender: Look smooth as you keep the groove. WH-XB910N offers a dramatically extended frequency response range and premium ANC tech.

5/5
Price Range: $$
Brand: Sony
Sony WH-XB910N Extra Bass Noise Cancelling Bluetooth Headphones
See Price on Amazon
…and another 23 Reviews

The Download

While KLH’s Ultimate One headphones are a bit superior in the department of aesthetics, Sony’s WH-XB910N is here for people that don’t mind their headphones looking a bit ordinary if they perform the part.

It’s hard to pinpoint its best and most innovative feature, but subjectively, I found its extended frequency range as the ultimate benefit for bass players. The lower frequencies almost dove into the minus range while the higher frequency range is extended by 5 kHz.

Even though its driver units are slightly smaller in comparison to my previous pick, they are still remarkably strong and versatile.

They’ve been tuned to add a bit of extra punch to the bass response, making every stroke on your strings resonate stronger, louder, and more vibrant. This can and will make a difference in a live performance setting.

I want to praise its dual noise canceling technology, as it promotes more efficient communication between yourself and whoever’s in the control room while you’re recording. Did I mention that WH-XB910N is one of my favorite sets of studio headphones?

As wireless headphones, WH-XB910N is truly a companion to hold onto if you’re a touring musician.

Let’s face it, even the coolest people on planet earth would annoy you if you spent a few days with them in a tiny van. Fortunately, WH-XB910N offers 30 hours of battery life per charge, so you’d get at least 10 hours of sonic freedom in such cases.

The only thing I didn’t particularly like about Sony’s WH-XB910N is the tight fit. The earcups can swivel a bit, but the fit adjustment mechanism is a bit clunky. Considering all the other features, this shouldn’t be too big of a deal-breaker.

The Specs

  • Connectivity type:  Bluetooth version 5.2
  • Battery life:  30 hours per charge (40 without noise cancellation)
  • Frequency range:  7 Hz to 25 kHz
  • Driver size:  40 mm
  • Weight:  8.89 oz

Stuff I like

  • Supremely broad frequency response
  • Can pick up on the faintest audio signals with ease
  • Dual noise cancellation technology
  • Super-light construction
  • Very durable

Stuff I like less

  • Its bass response can be too much, but it can be customized
  • Tight fit
Overall Rating: 5 / 5 Stars

What’s in the Box:

  • Sony WH-XB910N headphones

Silensys E7 Active Noise Cancelling Headphones

Budget Pick: Big cups, big drivers, and big sound made available at a rock-bottom price tag. Even backup headphones can look cool.

4/5
Price Range: $
Brand: Silensys
Silensys E7 Active Noise Cancelling Headphones
See Price on Amazon
…and another 3,481 Reviews

The Download

Silensys is an Amazon merchant, so don’t fret if you never heard the name. The “E7” is more popularly associated with Cowin’s E7 headphones too, but that’s a topic for another time.

What makes these cans one of the best low-end headphones is that they boast a range of powerful features that are far from common in this price range.

“Long battery life, large aperture drivers, and a polished design” is a sentence I’d use to describe a mid-range, or even a boutique pair of headphones, not something that costs a six-pack and a pocketful of change.

What I liked the most about Silensys E7 is the fact that it features an up-to-date Bluetooth version. While I was browsing Amazon, eBay, Walmart, and Target for cheap cans to have as a backup, I found quite a few models with Bluetooth 4.0 that cost more than twice as much.

E7 comes supplied with active noise cancellation technology. Even though it’s basic and nowhere nearly as efficient as ANC supplied to Ultimate One or WH-XB910N, it does a good job at blocking ambient noises while allowing you to shift back to real life with a click of a button.

One of the things I’d like to point out is that Sony’s WH-XB910N and Silensys E7 share the same battery life. If you’re looking for cans that can last through a turbulent flight trip, you don’t have to pay hundreds of dollars with E7.

The only thing you won’t be too thrilled about is how flimsy they are, but that should be the least of your worries considering how cheap they are.

The Specs

  • Connectivity type:  Bluetooth version 5.0
  • Battery life:  30 hours per charge
  • Frequency range:  20 Hz to 20 kHz
  • Driver size:  45 mm
  • Weight:  1 lb

Stuff I like

  • Fully rechargeable
  • Great sound for the price
  • Solid ANC technology
  • Available at a bargain price

Stuff I like less

  • Available at a bargain price
  • Average frequency range
Overall Rating: 4 / 5 Stars

What’s in the Box:

  • Silensys E7 headphones
  • 1 Li-Ion rechargeable battery
  • 3.5 mm cable
  • USB cable
  • Instructions manual

Phiaton 900 Legacy Digital Hybrid Active Noise Canceling Headphones

Premium Option: A set of headphones equipped with features as robust as its construction. Comfortable, powerful, and stylish, Phiaton 900 Legacy is among the best high-end cans out there.

5/5
Price Range: $$$
Brand: Phiaton
Phiaton 900 Legacy Digital Hybrid Active Noise Canceling Headphones
See Price on Amazon
…and another 71 Reviews

The Download

There is a special category of music gear that has answers to the question “what would you buy if money wasn’t an issue?” Phiaton’s 900 Legacy may be one of the priciest models on this list, but it’s also one of the best-performing headphone sets that the current market has to offer.

The 900 Legacy is currently the strongest model in the series, offering a superior battery lifetime in comparison to Phiaton MS 530, a better form of wired connectivity than BT 460, inline touch controls as opposed to BT 330 NC, and vastly improved noise cancellation technology when compared to BT 390.

With 43 hours of battery life per charge, its endurance is quite exemplary. You don’t have to worry about the bats running out of juices, even if you listened to music through your road trips, went to check in at a hotel, played a gig, and went straight into the studio the next day with them still on.

Phiaton is quite famous for introducing innovative technologies to its headphones, especially features that bring a higher level of convenience to the user. The Everyplay-X tech allows you to seamlessly switch between the wired and wireless connection, allowing you to enjoy music online or offline wherever you are.

The 900 Legacy headphone set is compatible with most voice assistants (Amazon Alexa, Google’s Voice Assistant, and such). Switching between songs as you practice your bass playing skills is as easy as calling the song you want to play next out.

These headphones are supplied with 40 mm drivers, which is not exactly what I expected out of a set as expensive as 900 Legacy.

Although they may not be as loud or as bombastic as Ultimate One headphones, they are a bit more flexible. Controlling, or better said “taming” its sound is very easy, to the point that they would pass as a pair of studio headphones were it not for the slightly bass-colored sonic signature.

Overall, Phiaton’s 900 Legacy is an excellent choice if you demand top-quality headphones and can afford them. The hefty price tag is, however, not its main drawback. I expected its frequency response to be a bit broader, but it’s closer to average than anything.

The Specs

  • Connectivity type:  Bluetooth 5.1
  • Battery life:  43 hours
  • Frequency range:  20 Hz to 24 kHz
  • Driver size:  40 mm
  • Weight:  9.03 oz

Stuff I like

  • Powerful, accurate sonic performance
  • Customizable bass response
  • Hybrid noise cancellation technology
  • Inline controls
  • Carbon graphite construction

Stuff I like less

  • Mediocre frequency response range
  • Highly expensive
Overall Rating: 5 / 5 Stars

What’s in the Box:

  • Phiaton 900 Legacy headphones
  • Shockproof carrying case
  • USB cable
  • 3.5 mm cable
  • Audio cable

HiFiMan HE400SE Stealth Magnets Version Over-Ear Open-Back Headphones

Best Value: A beautiful set of studio headphones with a leather-bonded headband. If you’re searching for headphones that can capture and reproduce music exactly how you create it, look no further than HE400SE.

4/5
Price Range: $$
Brand: HIFIMAN
HiFiMan HE400SE Stealth Magnets Version Over-Ear Open-Back Headphones
See Price on Amazon
…and another 505 Reviews

The Download

I wanted to include a pair of studio headphones for recording bass players. I have to admit, I learned that you can’t use anything when you enter the recording booth a bit later in life; HE400SE could’ve helped me create a bit stronger demo, but fortunately, now it can help you.

One of the main reasons why I recommend HiFiMan’s HE400SE is that it offers a Sennheiser-like performance without costing as much. Its neutral sonic signature and straight frequency response may be considered drawbacks if you use these cans on stage, but in a recording room, that’s precisely what you want.

HiFiMan used special magnets to ensure you won’t hear any harmonic distortion or artifacts while using HE400SE. These magnets are called “acoustically invisible” magnets because they filter any unwanted noise internally.

Regarding external noise, HE400SE is outfitted with a premium-quality active noise canceling technology. The large mesh cups and thick foam pads also provide a dependable “passive” barrier, further reinforcing the efficiency of the ANC tech.
These headphones were built to withstand a lifetime of use, but only if you maintain them regularly.

What I loved the most about HiFiMan HE400SE is how well they respond to soundstage tuning. The fact that the drivers are acoustically sealed allows you more freedom to tweak their performance.

At the same time, the casing of these driver units is a bit more delicate, so I recommend caution when doing anything that could affect its physical integrity.

Personally, I am not too much of a fan of leather on headphones for several reasons. First, leather builds up heat and makes me sweat much more than any other material. It won’t flake, unlike the faux leather used in headbands and earcups of budget headphones, but it’s far harder to properly replace than regular foam.

The Specs

  • Connectivity type:  Wired
  • Battery life:  N/A
  • Frequency range:  20 Hz to 20 kHz
  • Driver size:  40 mm
  • Weight:  13.5 oz

Stuff I like

  • One of the best studio headphones for bassists in the market
  • Sturdy 3.5 cable connectivity
  • Acoustically invisible magnets eliminate all harmonic distortion
  • Remarkably durable construction

Stuff I like less

  • The leather headband builds up heat quickly
  • A bit heavier than average
Overall Rating: 4 / 5 Stars

What’s in the Box:

  • HiFiMan HE400SE headphones

Razer Barracuda Wireless Gaming Headset

Honorable Mention: For people who value comfort above everything else, Barracuda has a gorgeous serpent-themed solution.

4/5
Price Range: $$
Brand: Skullcandy
Razer Barracuda Wireless Gaming Headset
See Price on Amazon
…and another 58 Reviews

The Download

Do you know why gamers can endure 12+ hours of gaming without ever taking their headphones off? They use comfortable headphones.

Razer Barracuda is, subjectively, one of the most comfortable headphone models a bassist can use. If you are mainly practicing at home with your cans around your ears, Barracuda will change the way you perceive long-term wearing comfort.

Barracuda is an “honorable mention” simply because it’s more popular in gaming circles. The edgy graphics and snake-like patterns on the cups won’t do the stereotype that all bass players are chill any favors, but if you’re into more aggressive music, it doesn’t get more brutal than this.

As for why Barracuda is so great for bass players, these cans were specifically tuned to deliver low-frequency tones with surgical precision. Whether you want to work on perfecting your “bass” hearing or simply want to enjoy the tiniest of details in the music you create and perform, Barracuda’s got your back.

In terms of raw specs, Razer Barracuda is a high-tier headphone model that doesn’t cost a small fortune. It boasts the latest Bluetooth version, outstanding battery lifetime, super-sized drivers, and a ton of customizable features.

The Specs

  • Connectivity type:  Bluetooth 5.2; Wired
  • Battery life:  40 hours
  • Frequency range:  20 Hz to 20 kHz
  • Driver size:  50 mm
  • Weight:  10.58 oz

Stuff I like

  • Supremely comfortable headphones
  • Super-loud and detailed sound performance
  • Togglable active noise cancellation feature
  • A variety of gratis goodies

Stuff I like less

  • A very colored sonic signature
  • The headband is slightly flimsier than average
Overall Rating: 4 / 5 Stars

What’s in the Box:

  • Razer Barracuda headphones
  • 3.5 mm combo cable
  • Type A-to-C adapter cable
  • Type C USB cable
  • Type C Wireless Dongle
  • User’s Guide

Skullcandy Hesh 2 Wireless Over-Ear Headphone

Also Consider: Skullcandy’s Hesh 2 is a decent choice for bassists that don’t mind trading long battery life for cool aesthetics, amazing sound, and comfort.

4/5
Price Range: $
Brand: Skullcandy
Skullcandy Hesh 2 Wireless Over-Ear Headphone
See Price on Amazon
…and another 8,394 Reviews

The Download

Skullcandy headphones are an “acquired taste” in my opinion. If Sony’s cans are all-rounders, Sennheiser’s headphones renowned for superb sound quality, and Audio-Technica’s headphone sets popular for innovative features, Skullcandy’s Hesh 2 is a bit of everything, only not as great.

Since I’m reviewing the best headphones for bass guitarists, I don’t want you to think that Hesh 2 doesn’t belong here, it’s quite the opposite. This is one of the finest cans in its price range, and I believe that there are many musicians on a budget that don’t mind certain drawbacks if the main specs are top-notch.

These headphones have the lowest battery life on the list, and they don’t charge as quickly. However, they are sturdy, comfortable, and sound several times better in comparison to contemporary alternatives in this price point category.

What I love the most about Hesh 2 is that it’s among the handful of low-end headphone models that comes equipped with 50 mm drivers that don’t compromise volume for sonic execution.

You’ll get to enjoy the full-spectrum sound without having to worry about harmonic distortion, which is not something many entry-level headphones can boast about.

I also love the fact that Skullcandy Hesh 2 is light as a feather. Weighing barely over 6 ounces, it can be easy to forget that you’re wearing them. Furthermore, they offer a highly flexible fit, as they feature ultra-soft synthetic leather cups. While I generally dislike faux leather for various reasons, I do have to say that it doesn’t get as hot as genuine leather.

Hesh 2 also sports inline controls, allowing you to easily customize the volume, switch between different tracks, mute songs, or even answer calls with a simple click.

Another reason why I recommend these headphones to all bass players, even if they were to serve you as a backup, is that they are very durable. Featuring a metal-made understructure, they’ll easily last years if used and maintained properly.

The Specs

  • Connectivity type:  Bluetooth 4.0
  • Battery life:  15 hours
  • Frequency range:  20 Hz to 20 kHz
  • Driver size:  50 mm
  • Weight:  6.3 oz

Stuff I like

  • Very affordable
  • Superb sound quality for the price
  • Sturdier than it looks
  • Unique aesthetics

Stuff I like less

  • Poor battery life
  • Slow charging
Overall Rating: 4 / 5 Stars

Conclusion

If you ask me, what makes the best headphones for bass guitarists is not only great sound but good ANC, sturdiness, and the ability to provide you with a comfortable listening experience in a long run.

I know that not everyone can afford 900 Legacy or Ultimate One, but I also believe that many professionals and touring musicians aren’t as well-informed about the best that the market has to offer; after all, new models are entering the scene by the minute, and with this review, I wanted to give you the finest that the market has to offer.

This post was last updated on 2022-09-26 / Some images from Amazon Product API & some links may be affiliate links which may earn us a commission from purchases.


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