Best Isolation Headphones Reviews

Music is one of people’s biggest pleasures in life. We listen to music no matter what we do. Sometimes at work, when we work out, or just because we want to chill in a Sunday afternoon. It’s very relaxing and makes you feel better. I always put my headphones in when I want to space out.

Vic Firth Stereo Isolation Headphones
Designed to protect musicians from the high sound levels
Drastically reduces the level of external sound reaching the ear
Automatically self-aligning for perfect fit
Direct Sound EX-29 Dynamic Closed Headphones
Dynamic closed back headphones with closed back drivers
IncrediFlex padded, fully adjustable headband; foldable for storage
Environmentally responsible natural passive isolation
Audio-Technica ATH-M30x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones
Advanced build quality and engineering
Tuned for enhanced detail, with excellent mid-range definition
Collapsible for space-saving portability

One of the things that matter the most when listening to your favorite music is the headphones. If you have a low-quality pair, then the entire experience is minimized. You don’t get that “goosebump” feeling you get from a high-quality pair of headphones. My personal favorite is the noiseisolation kind. I get to listen to my favorite music as if I were in the studio where the music was made. Nothing from the outside can bother me.

The difference between passive noise isolation and active noise canceling

To be honest, I didn’t know about this until recently. I just knew that isolation headphones cancel everything else out, but I didn’t know that there is a difference between active noise canceling and passive isolation. And the difference is not something you want to omit.

Passive noise isolation cancels everything out. The moment you put those headphones on, there is nothing in the background. Complete silence. It doesn’t matter that is music, annoying noises, or people talking. You put these on, and there is quiet.

Active isolation, on the other hand, works differently. It uses a microphone to record low-frequencysounds from the background and then sendsan opposite sound to cancel them out. It was first designed for helicopter pilots so they couldn’t hear all that humming, but it does a great job outside that domain as well. Personally, I believe that’s brilliant. However, noise canceling headphones will not cancel people’s voice, which is kind of a bummer at times.

If I had to choose, I would go for the noise isolation headphones because you cannot hear anything other than the music. Also, the noise canceling headphones may sometimes distort the sound, and they are generally low-quality. After all, the whole point is to eliminate the background noises entirely.

The benefits of using noise isolation headphones

I suppose you have noticed how people are always searching for the best headphones because they can appreciate their music better. A high-quality pair of headphones can improve your entire experience because of its benefits. Here are just a few.

  • Did you notice how your phone always alerts you that high volume can lead to permanent damage to your hearing? Mine does. Whenever I want to turn the volume up, the phone warns me about the consequences. That’s because it’s true. However, noise isolation headphones allow you to listen to music at a lower volume because it reduces the background sounds to a minimum. That means you don’t have to turn the volume up in order to hear better. It may annoy you at times, but it’s really for your own good. Nobody stops you from turning up the volume, but 20-30 years from now, you will wish you had listened to this advice.
  • There are countless studies which prove that a high volume can lead to hearing loss in the long run. Isolation headphones will prevent that from happening by allowing you to listen to music without turning the volume to a maximum. It’s a real issue, and people, especially teenagers and young adults, don’t take this into consideration, only to go deaf years after.
  • Do you know which music genre is the most susceptible of being affected by background sounds? Classical music. If you are an enthusiast, then isolation headphones are the best choice for you. Plus, since there is no noise distortion, you can enjoy music at its very best. Every detail will come forward, which will make your experience a lot more rich and enjoyable.
  • Isolation headphones come in handy when you don’t want to be bothered by what is happening around you. Say you are a gamer who wants to enjoy his time spent at the computer without distractions. Or maybe you want to ride the subway without a chatty old lady bothering you. These headphones will give you precisely that.
  • They are ideal for traveling. When you commute or travel by train or airplane often, the environment can be really noisy. I have a very hard time reading in an airport, for example. But with isolation headphones, you can block all that out. You can do whatever you like in silence.
  • Students use isolation headphones for studying. When I was in college, I had a pair. The dorms aren’t exactly quiet. Not even at night. Studying turned out to be very difficult in such conditions, which is why these headphones are very helpful. Also, they are more advanced now than they were when I was a student, so yay for you.
  • Last, but not least, isolation headphones are quite common in the music industry, especially with drummers. Can you imagine spending an entire day with all that loud music? That can severely damage your hearing. This is different from when you listen to loud music in your headphones. You don’t have to do it, but a musician is kind of forced to be there, him or her doing the music and all. Without protection, people in this industry would go deaf in a matter of years. But not if they wear isolation headphones.

The cons of noise isolation headphones

There aren’t many that I can tell you. However, one of people’smajor concerns is that the lack of background sounds can lead to dangerous situations. Let’s say you are walking down the street with a pair of isolation headphones on. You cannot hear any distress signals, if anyone is calling for help, you cannot hear. Also, you won’t hear police or ambulance sirens. Sometimes people get so “in their zone,” that they even fail to acknowledge traffic. That is potentially dangerous. So if you want to purchase a pair of noise isolation headphones, I recommend that you don’t forget about your own safety and use them only when you really need them.

What are the best isolation headphones?

The answer to that question depends a lot on what you need them for. Some people just want to block out all the sounds, while others need them in the studio while recording. Every situation requires different criteria, which is why the first thing you need to do before making a purchase is to establish the headphones’ primary purpose. Below are few suggestions that are considered the best in any given situation.

Vic Firth Stereo Isolation Headphones

These headphones were initially designed to protect musicians while in the recording studio or on stage, but honestly, nothing stops you from using them in any other circumstances. At least you know that they will do a good job. If it can stop drummers from losing their hearing, it will do a good job of blocking out all the background sound you want to get rid of. They will drastically reduce the outside noises from reaching your ear.

The Vic Firth Isolation Headphones will provide valuable protection from loud noise that can cause permanent damage to your hearing. They have an automatically self-aligning feature that makes them a perfect fit for anyone. The straight cord measure 6 feet and the large foam cushions will provide maximum comfort. Also, their purpose is also to isolate your ears from hearing anything that happens in the background.

Drummers are the most susceptible to wearing isolation headphones, which is why the manufacturer thought of them first. Maybe you don’t like to wear them when you are performing, but trust me that you will be grateful for it in a couple of years. These headphones manage to reduce the outside noise up to 24 dB, so turning up the volume is completely unnecessary. You can hear your music better, without the consequences of loud music.

One of the things that Vic Firth is famous for is that it manages to manufacture high-quality products that will last a long time. These headphones survive wear and tear, so you can abuse them as much as you want. However, make sure that transportation is safely conducted. Otherwise, you will have the unpleasant surprise of ruining them. Click here to read more reviews and buy on Amazon.

Direct Sound EX-29 Dynamic Closed Headphones

These headphones can reduce the background sound even better than the previous model. It can go as up as 28 dB. You may think that there is just a 4 dB difference, but just so you know, this amount isabout 1.4x as loud. The speaker assembly is custom-fitted and is designed to protect your eardrums while enhancing your recording experience. The sound clarity is amazing due to the advanced an-isotropic magnet drivers. The frequency range is 20Hz-20kHz.

Direct Sound Headphones are designed for portability. They can fold so you can transport them easily. Also, that feature protects their integrity while traveling. The cords are behind your ear. They will not be I your way if you are performing. The last thing you need is the cable to stop you from what you’re doing. They are meant for everyone in a recording studio, from the performer to the sound engineers.

Just because they are mostly used in the music industry, that doesn’t mean you cannot use them for other purposes as well. You can read in complete silence, you can just listen to music at home, or you can wear them while you study without anyone or anything bothering you. It’s a great asset worthy of its price.

The headband is fully adjustable, and the stereo 3.5mm with screw-on type gold plated 1/4″ adapter exceeds any expectation. The cord is 9 feet long. The IncrediFlex padding makes wearing these headphones as comfortable as possible. Nothing will get past them, and your experience will be worth it. Click here to read more reviews and buy on Amazon.

Audio-Technica ATH-M30x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones

This model has its own league, so to speak. They are designed for the professional field, so as you may have guessed, the standards are a bit higher. Audio-Technica didn’t fail to deliver to what a lot of people believe are the best isolation headphones.

The superior quality and engineering of these headphones provide incredible sound and perfect noise isolation in any circumstances. They feature 40mm drivers with rare-earth magnets and copper-clad aluminum wire voice coils. The cord measures 9.8 feet, and you’ll also receive a 6.3 mm screw-on adapter for the 3.5 mm jack, which makes them compatible with a variety of devices.

The collapsible feature makes the ATH-M30x very easy to transport, but it will also provide protection whenever you put them in a bag. The earpieces rotate (DJ style), and they swivel 15º for an optimal fitting. They are extremely comfortable as the earmuffs will completely cover your ears, not sit on them.

What makes these headphones so reliable is the combination of modern engineering with the high-quality materials. The enhanced audio clarity will turn your music into a more enjoyable experience than using a regular headset. They are tuned for a highlydetailed audio experience and strong mid-range definition. That is what makes them so versatile in any given situation.

Even if they are primarily used in a recording studio or on stage, their features make them ideal for anyone. It doesn’t matter if you just want an incredible musical experience, want to study in complete silence, or maybe you just want to mow your lawn. The Vic Firth Isolation Headphones will provide exactly what you need. Click here to read more reviews and buy on Amazon.

My recommendation

After careful consideration, I reached the conclusion that the ATH-M30x are the best isolation headphones. They have a sensitivity of 96 Db, they are collapsible, which makes them easy to transport, and the cable comes out from just one earmuff. The quality is extraordinary as well. This model will survive a lot of wear and tear. Not to mention that they have a very cool design.


In my opinion, it’s completely worth it to invest in high-quality isolation headphones. They can provide an incredible experience when you are performing or just listening to music, and they are a God-given gift when you want to space out and block every single sound around you. Click here to buy on Amazon

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