Hey. I'm looking for a new pair of lightweight and compact (ideally closed back) headphones for field recording as my DT100s are a little bulky and I'm not happy with the quality with any other pair I have. Does anyone have a recommendation?

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    Dear James, there are many headphone questions in the site, and most of the answers have very good suggestions for different budgets. I recommend you to quick search those. May be some would answer your question directly. Jun 29, 2010 at 18:17

5 Answers 5


I'm a fan of the Sennheiser HD280 headphones. Good isolation and they are comfortable. They fold up for easy transportation too. I've seen these guys used during multiple applications.

  • Cheers - that looks pretty much what I'm after. I don't drive so like to keep my kit as compact as possible for walking around. Jun 30, 2010 at 12:15
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    Got myself a pair of HD380's. Couldn't be happier. Jul 17, 2010 at 10:29

The Sony MDR-7506 headphones could be considered something of a de facto standard. You see them show up all the time on film sets, at live sound mixing consoles, used by ENG news teams, in recording studios for monitoring, etc.

I haven't tried all of the headphones out there, but if you run across a pair of headphones on a gig, there's a reasonable chance it will be these.

You wouldn't want to listen to them all day long, but they can really shine a microscope on things in your mix that your monitors may overlook.


I'm very fond of the DT 250! I may be mistaken as I havn't actually tried out the DT 100 myself, but I've got the impression 250, though still covering the ears perfectly and isolating from the outside world very well, is a lot smaller than 100? I can't imagine myself going to work without my DT 250 :-) No matter what I'd say that's as compact as it get as long as you want truly professional headphones. If it doesn't cover the ears completely you'll probably have a lot of muffled direct sound disturbing the monitoring.


Everyone I know seems to rave about Sennheiser HD-25s, never tried them myself, but I've heard great things about them. They have on-the-ear cups rather than over/in ear, so they can become uncomfortable after long periods of use though.

My personal preference are Beyerdynamic DT770s. They have over-the-ear cups, are super comfortable and sound really good (good low end reproduction). However, I often find that voices are really sibilant on them, but I still love them to bits.

Hope this helps,



Wow, everybody is loving their Senny's huh? I used a pair of 280 Pro's for a while, then upgraded to 25's. I liked them ok, much better and more comfortable than the 280's. Still found myself getting a lot of the old sweaty ear rather quickly, and I didn't care much for the way they fit - which could be down to my sorta small head. Not sure, but in general I just found myself wanting to take them off way too often.

I just sold those and grabbed a pair of AIAIAI TMA-1's. Really loving these things. Super duper comfortable, two kinds of swappable ear pads, great sound, not to mention they look pretty darn cool. I can sense some coloration, and are probably best suited for DJ use, but it's not obtrusive and doesn't hide anything that I've noticed so far. Perhaps they present a bit on the bassy side. My main thing in the field is comfort and having something that kills a decent amount of ambient noise while not weighing down my head. I had them on for a good 6 hours straight last week and didn't get sweaty or uncomfortable once. Like these cans a lot.


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