When it comes to headphones, comfort is one of the first things that you should think about. Many people simply purchase the cheapest headphones they can find in order to save money, or simply use the ones that came with their particular device. The problem is that there are a lot of problems associated with uncomfortable headphones that range from hearing loss to headaches.
Essentially, there are 5 different types of headphones. Some of these headphones come with a mic, while others do not. If you are using your headphones for voice recording or for your phone, you will need to look for a set of headphones with a mic attached. Beyond the microphone, the following are the different styles of headphones you are likely to find: ear buds, in-ear-canal, lightweight, and full-size headphones. The following will help you understand the benefits and disadvantages of each type.
Earbuds. Ear buds are the smallest on the market and fit gently inside the ear. They customarily are the types of headphones with a mic or without a mic, which come with your equipment. As far as sound quality, ear buds are not considered the mack daddy of the headphone world, however they are extremely portable, easy to attach and will work fairly well. They do not however, block out much external sound and if they come with a microphone, it is usually clumsy to use. Most consumers rate ear buds as the most uncomfortable of headphones sold on the market today. For prolonged use, they tend to be hard to keep in the ears.
In-Ear Canal. In ear canal headphones, as the name suggests are designed to fit snugly into the ear canal. One of the benefits to in ear canal headphones is that they are small and easily portable, and since they fit into the ear canal - they do help to reduce outside noise and distractions. This makes them a pretty fair choice if you are looking for a set of headphones with a mic. The sound quality of in ear canal, varies greatly from brand to brand, but they are definitely considered a step up from ear buds. As for price, in ear canal headphones with a mic normally run around $20 - $20 dollars more than ear buds according to Consumer Reports. These headphones do cause some people to get headaches and can be uncomfortable, causing ear ringing and ear pain if used for prolonged periods of time.
Lightweight Earphones: Lightweight headphones with a mic are also fairly priced. The biggest difference with the lightweight headphones is that they are designed to fit over the head and cover the ear openings. Some have cushioning where they rest over the ears. Other lightweight headphones with mics also come with an over the head earphone and a mic that is attached and sits around the mouth. They also may have an ear clip and mouth clip for the microphone. Lightweight ear phones aren't as compact as the models mentioned above, but produce great sound, are comfortable and are inexpensive.
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