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mrgilder

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Noise Cancelling Headphones Recommendations

by mrgilder » Thu Oct 09, 2014 2:06 pm

So it's recently come to my attention that I do a much better job working on my art and writing when I'm totally isolated from everything. I almost always listen to music when I'm working on something, but in the past I've always kept one earbud in and one out so that I can also pay attention to the world around me. Big mistake. Last night I did an experiment and dug out a old pair of Sony over-the-ear style headphones and fully tried them out in lieu of my usual 1/2 earbud approach, and the difference in my ability to hone in on my work was noticeably better. I cranked out one of the best sketches that I've done in months.

Now I'm thinking about taking things a step further, and getting a nice pair of full-on earmuff style noise cancelling phones. The problem is, I'm no audiophile - not by a longshot - so I have no idea what will constitute a good buy. Not being an audiophile, I would also probably never be able to tell/appreciate the difference between a $50 pair and $300 pair. But that being said, I don't want a complete pieces of garbage either. I was hoping you guys could help. Here are my needs:

- This is just for sound, so I don't want or need a complete headset with a mic
- I need a simple 3.5mm plug. I don't have advanced equipment.
- I need to stay in the $50-75 range, as my budget is slim
- I'd like some sort of nice padding to reduce fatigue

I was thinking about these Audio Technica ATH-ANC27s. I've had good luck in the past buying obsolete or discontinued electronics for a good price, and at $50 down from $120, this seems like a no-brainer; however, I'm not terribly familiar with this brand.

Any help would be much appreciated.
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Teryn

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Re: Noise Cancelling Headphones Recommendations

by Teryn » Thu Oct 09, 2014 3:27 pm

I'd recommend Sennheiser's, they almost always have passive (not active, they don't always work as accurately) noise-cancelling full-can headphones at a decent price. They may (or may not) be a little bit more expensive ($90-100 at the most) than you've said, but I can vouch for two pairs over 7 years, they keep working even when the material for the ear starts to (very slowly) fall apart. I used them heavily, for the record, and the ear pieces always go before the inside electronics even show age.

Make sure they're passive, though. I read an article about this and found out the difference between active and passive noise cancelling.

Passive: thick, heavy materials in the cans/ear-covers keeps the sound outside out. No other measures.

Active: The headphones themselves create a counter-soundwave of sorts to cancel out any noise from outside, this is digitally generated by the headphones themselves in addition to what sound comes from your music playing. This works well so long as the sounds outside are timed properly with the ones inside, but if the timing is off, it can be intensely distracting to hear the sound-cancelling noises be out of sync.

This is the old style pair I used to own, a bit heavy, otherwise comfortable:
http://www.amazon.com/Sennheiser-HD-419 ... B005N8W1MO

Or, maybe something newer:
http://www.amazon.com/Sennheiser-HD-429 ... B005N8W1Q0

I also found drawing to music really helped me focus a lot, so hope this advice was helpful. :)
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Alex Connolly

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Re: Noise Cancelling Headphones Recommendations

by Alex Connolly » Thu Oct 09, 2014 3:42 pm

Seconding the Sennies. Loved the various cans and buds I've had over the years, all Sennheisers. Affordable and reliable.
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mrgilder

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Re: Noise Cancelling Headphones Recommendations

by mrgilder » Thu Oct 09, 2014 3:59 pm

Teryn wrote:
This is the old style pair I used to own, a bit heavy, otherwise comfortable:
http://www.amazon.com/Sennheiser-HD-419 ... B005N8W1MO

Or, maybe something newer:
http://www.amazon.com/Sennheiser-HD-429 ... B005N8W1Q0



Both of these look lovely and comfortable, and are well within my price range. Thank you so much. :D
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Angry Jedi

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Re: Noise Cancelling Headphones Recommendations

by Angry Jedi » Thu Oct 09, 2014 5:18 pm

I had some Sennheisers a while back -- first time I ever spent more than £10 on a pair of headphones. They were smallish "Walkman-style" earphones (i.e. not in-ear, but not full over-ear either) and did a fantastic job of blocking out a lot of outside noise. I don't think they were specifically noise-cancelling earphones, but the quality was wonderful, they were comfortable and the way they fit meant that when you were listening to something, you weren't hearing anything else at all.

Best pair of headphones I ever owned. I was gutted when I lost them, and I don't even know how or where I lost them -- probably in a house move at some point over the years. Were I to go grab another pair of premium-ish headphones, though, I'd head straight for the Sennheisers.

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