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DJ Headphones vs Studio Headphones

Whether you enjoy listening to music every day or work in the music industry, there’s nothing more important than a good pair of headphones. Having the freedom to pop on your headphones and instantly immerse in some good tunes makes a world of difference!
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While we can all appreciate a good pair of headphones, understanding the differences between the types of headphones available isn’t always easy. This is particularly true when comparing the two most popular types: DJ headphones and studio headphones.

Although DJ and studio headphones look similar initially, they have some very different features, made for very different purposes. This guide will reveal all.

What are DJ headphones?

As the name suggests, DJ headphones are designed with DJs in mind. They have a special swiveling mechanism that allows them to either be worn on both ears or just one ear. This is an important feature for DJs, as it lets them interact with the crowd without losing track of what they’re playing.

As well as being able to swivel, DJ headphones feature a special technology that allows them to play two different tracks in each ear. This makes it easier to cue up a track while listening to the current one.

To summarize, DJ headphones are specially made for DJs. They have a series of features that make mixing and playing as easy as can be.

What are studio headphones?

Studio headphones, on the other hand, are made for recording studios and general use. A lot of brands now use the term “studio” when referring to their everyday headphones.

Unlike DJ headphones, studio headphones don’t have a load of technical features. Instead, they simply play audio exactly as you’d expect it, through both ears.

What’s the difference between DJ and studio headphones?

DJ and studio headphones are designed for different purposes. DJ headphones allow you to completely tailor your music experience – they are there to assist with the mixing process, rather than just provide an enjoyable listening experience.

Studio headphones, on the other hand, are designed to provide a flat frequency response. This makes the listening experience a completely authentic one, allowing producers and studio members to spot flaws in a track before giving it the green light.

Comparing DJ vs studio headphones

We’ve talked through the basics of each type of headphone – now let’s dive into the specifics. Whether you’re deciding what type of headphones to get or want to learn more about them, the following information is for you. There are plenty of pros to studio headphones and likewise to DJ, but let’s dive into specifics.

Here are the five main comparison points to be aware of:


For a lot of us, purchasing a certain set of headphones often comes down to the price. But, it’s important to remember that if you buy cheap, you’ll buy twice.

When comparing the prices of DJ headphones and studio headphones, DJ headphones will near enough always be more expensive. While this will sometimes come down to the brand of headphones, DJ headphones are made from better (and more technical) materials. This alone makes them more expensive.


Next up, let’s talk about comfort. Realistically, any pair of top-quality headphones should be comfortable, with just the right amount of padding. There’s nothing worse than getting a headache or aching ears while trying to listen to music!

When comparing the comfort between DJ and studio headphones, it’s a known fact that DJ headphones win the battle. This isn’t surprising, considering DJs need to wear headphones for long periods of time in hot environments. Comfort is the absolute key.

The cushioning that lines the ear cups in DJ headphones is often made from a special material that minimizes heat dissipation. This prevents the DJ’s ears from becoming overheated and itchy while playing, further adding to the comfort. If a DJ were to wear a pair of studio headphones with normal padding, they’d probably have to take breaks every so often.

Although DJ headphones are more comfortable, this doesn’t mean that you’ll hate wearing studio headphones. These headphones also have padding, just not as much.

Power strength

In terms of power handling, studio headphones near enough always have a higher power handling ability. This is so that they can deliver the most authentic sound possible, particularly with regard to flat-frequency responses. Delivering a flat frequency response is a must-have feature of proper studio headphones, so this power is important.

Noise cancellation

Noise cancellation is a must-have feature for many headphone wearers. It cancels out any external noises, allowing you to focus on the music and nothing else truly.

While noise cancellation is a feature that both DJ and studio headphones have, you’ll find that the isolation works better on DJ headphones. This is because DJs need to hear exactly what they’re doing when playing in front of large crowds. Without noise cancellation, it’ll be hard to mix tracks and deliver the best performance possible.

Studio headphones can also provide noise cancellation, just not as effective. This is because most studio headphones have an open-back design, which allows air to pass through to the speaker. This is important for delivering a flat frequency response, but it does mean that you might hear some external noises.


If you’re someone that takes your headphones everywhere, durability is a must. The last thing you want is a broken pair of headphones after one bump or scrape!

As DJ headphones are designed for long periods of use and travel, they are made from a higher-quality of materials. This makes them slightly sturdier than studio headphones, which are often more fragile and not fit for traveling.

No matter what type of headphones you wear, be sure to handle them with care. At the end of the day, any type of electronic will break if not looked after properly!

Which is best for you?

While both DJ and studio headphones might look similar at first glance, they certainly have a lot of differences to be aware of. Deciding what’s best for you will entirely depend on what you’ll be using them for. DJ headphones can make a great addition to your DJ setup, looking like the ultimate pro.

To summarize, DJ headphones are made specifically for DJs. They assist with the mixing process, ensuring that all performances are as good as can be. Studio headphones, on the other hand, are designed for those making music or casual wearers. They deliver a more authentic listening experience.

Kelvin, our design whiz and audio tech aficionado, pens articles on audio, home technology, and hip-hop for Upbeat Geek. With a keen eye on the latest from soundbars to earbuds, Kelvin decodes the tech world for our readers. His love for travel, concerts, and a music-driven creative career underscores his expertise. Kelvin’s writing not only covers the intricacies of audio and home technology but also dives into the vibrant world of hip-hop.

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