Whether you like to jam to your favorite songs or professionally make music, studio headphones are a handy thing to have in your arsenal. These headphones are designed to reproduce the most accurate sound so that you can hear even the tiniest details. They’re comfortable, durable, and easily transportable, so you can use them as long as you need to.
If you think that they’re expensive and you can’t afford them, you’re wrong. Thanks to the wide variety of headphones, getting a decent pair won’t empty your bank account.
Keep reading to discover the best low-priced studio headphones with a price range under 100, which are equally as good as the high-end expensive models and offer incredible sound quality.
What Are the Three Headphone Types?
Closed-back headphones allow the listener to only listen to what they want and block external sounds. The outside sound is mostly blocked out when you place the closed earcups on the ears. So, if that’s your desired result, you should always choose a good pair of closed-back headphones.
Another thing that makes them amazing is that they have the finest bass and extended frequency ranges, making them the ideal studio headphones for use in loud environments.
They are, however, the heaviest headphones to wear, so they are not ideal if you have to wear them for long periods of time.
Open-back headphones have a semi-open design that allows the air to pass through. Because of this, the sound they produce is airy. These headphones don’t block ambient sound or external noise but produce a clear and natural sound, making you aware of your surroundings.
Therefore open-back cans are great for recording your vocals, home use, or mixing for long hours. Don’t forget that others can hear the audio if the volume is too high.
In-ear monitors are small headphones that go into the ear.
Even though the in-ear monitors are small, they can isolate external sound. Because of that, they’re widely used by musicians on stage. With them, they can hear their live performance without hearing thousands of fans clapping and screaming.
You can also use in-ear monitors if you want to listen to music on the go.
What Is Frequency Response?
The frequency response of studio headphones is the range of audio frequencies that headphones provide. They’re presented in Hertz. For example, most headphones have a range between 20 and 20,000 Hz, where the first numbers refer to the frequency of bass and the second ones to the treble.
This is helpful because when you’re about to buy some professional studio headphones and read their specifications, you’ll be able to choose the right ones based on your preferences. Remember, in general, the higher the frequencies, the better the sound quality.
What Is Impedance?
Impedance is the resistance of the headphones to the electrical current. It’s essential for restricting the flow of electrical current. Sounds complicated eh?!
The impedance is displayed in Ohms, and the higher the headphone impedance, the more power they’ll need. For casual listening to music, everything between 40 and 60 Ohms is good.
Things to Consider When Buying Studio Headphones
Buying the perfect pair of studio headphones under 100 might be challenging, as the choices are endless. Keep reading to discover what details you should pay attention to, as these things can make an enormous difference.
You’ll be surprised to discover that headphones with a short cable often provide better sound quality. However, if you’re a musician or a DJ, you’ll need a longer cable because that offers more freedom to move.
To be able to find the right headphones, you should know that underneath the rubber layer on the cable, the metal is usually copper or silver.
Silver is the best, but high-quality copper will be a suitable choice if you’re on a budget. So if you’re looking for a cheaper pair of professional studio headphones, search for a good cable quality.
Wireless vs. wired: which is better?
If you don’t want to be bothered with tangled wires or waste your time untangling them, wireless headphones are the ideal choice. Your lifestyle also plays a role in your choice because if you have an active lifestyle, you’ll want to use wireless headphones.
Another great thing about them is that they’re easily portable so you can take them anywhere. Wireless headphones are often foldable, making their portability even more convenient. Moreover, they use Bluetooth, so you can easily pair them with any device.
The downside is they run on batteries. If the batteries run out and you’re in the middle of a project, it can cause problems. There is also some discussion about the sound quality not being quite as brilliant as a wired connection.
Wired headphones produce higher audio quality and will allow you to notice every little mistake in the audio, which can be a handy feature if you’re making music!
Another important detail is that they don’t require charging, so you’ll never run out of battery in the middle of your favorite song.
How comfortable are budget studio headphones?
If you are planning to use your headphones often, comfort is essential. Although most budget studio headphones under 100 are very comfortable, you must pay attention to a few details to be sure that you’re buying those that provide the highest level of comfort.
First of all, they should have thicker and softer padding. The headphones with extra padding provide maximum comfort for your ears. Another feature that will increase comfort is an adjustable headband.
You’ll also want them to be light, as wearing heavy ones will tire you more than you realise.
Tracking and Monitoring
If you’re an aspiring musician who wants to record and produce, you’ll need a set of headphones suitable for tracking and monitoring. Tracking means recording, and monitoring refers to listening to the audio.
Mixing and Mastering
Although mixing a track is usually done with a set of studio monitors, having a dedicated pair of mixing cans (headphones) is really useful. You never know when you’ll need to mix something on the fly…
Mastering – in all honesty, mastering is done on monitors. However, it’s not a bad thing to be able to test out your master on a set of headphones.
Getting headphones that provide sound isolation is another important factor if you travel often and love to listen to music without being bothered by the surroundings. The headphones with sound isolation have thicker padding and other materials that block external sound.
It’s important not to mix the headphones with sound isolation with the headphones that provide noise-cancelling, as the noise-cancelling feature in headphones uses technology to block the external sound instead of proper materials.
Noise-cancelling headphones are great when you absolutely need to shut your ears off from the outside world. But you’ll never want to mix or perform with them. They’re specifically used for the enjoyment of listening to music.
The last thing you should consider when buying studio headphones is the sound quality the headphones produce.
In this world, you get what you pay for. Our advice is always to buy a decent brand name. They have millions invested in their research and development, so why wouldn’t you want to utilise that?!
Tracking headphones are not only great for recording, but they also do a good job of making sure sound doesn’t spill from the headphones to the microphone.
This way, if you’re recording your voice and listening to a track simultaneously, the sounds won’t get mixed.
Monitoring means listening to or analyzing the recorded sound, whether vocals or instruments. You’ll want your monitoring headphones to provide the highest sound quality.
Usually, monitoring headphones are closed-back and perfect for home use or in the studio.
Are Budget Studio Headphones Worth It?
If you pay careful attention to the important things discussed in this article, and make sure that the budget studio headphones you’re interested in offer good sound quality and isolation, then yes, they can be worth it.
If you’re making music as a hobby in your home, there’s no need to spend a lot of money. You can have incredible results with budget studio headphones for under 100.
Consumer vs. Studio Headphones
Gaming headphones (aka Regular or Normal Headphones)
Regular headphones don’t have a wide frequency range, but the positive side is that you won’t be able to hear the tiny imperfections in the sound. This makes them great for casual listening to music or gaming but not for much more, especially not for professional use. If you’re a young musician, and even if you play music as a hobby, you should get studio headphones.
The studio headphones are the perfect choice if you want a more professional approach to music. Designed to provide raw and accurate sound reproduction, you’ll be able to hear even the tiniest detail of the musical composition.
Studio headphones are a must if you need headphones for recording, mastering, monitoring, or mixing audio.
Headphones vs. Studio Monitors
You now hopefully understand that studio headphones are specifically designed to give you a clear, unaltered sound. The color of the sound isn’t changed in any way. But how do studio headphones differ from studio monitors?
Studio monitors are loudspeakers explicitly designed to be used in a studio environment. They are the speaker equivalent of your studio headphones – you just don’t wear them on your head!!!
Usually, they’re used for mixing, as balancing the mix is often easier on monitors than on headphones. But it is handy to have both options.
The 10 Best Studio Headphones Under 100
So now for our list. We have tried to offer different options to ensure there is something for everyone, but they all have one thing in common; they’re all the best cheap studio headphones!
Cheap headphones don’t equate to bad headphones – it just means we think these models offer outstanding value for money. They all have excellent quality sound at an affordable price, which to us, makes them great headphones.
Best Studio Headphones Overall
Features: Drivers with rare earth magnets, two detachable cables, and rotating ear cups
Perfect For: Studio producers, DJs, and people mixing or mastering audio; one-ear monitoring
Comes With: 47-120″ coiled cable; 120″ straight cable
- Extremely comfortable fit for extended periods
- Excellent build quality with comfortable ear pads
- Extended frequency response
- Good for studio recording
- Great price
- No audio controls
Best Budget Studio Mixing Headphones
Features: Extremely clean sound and soft, replaceable earpads
Perfect For: Mixing audio and people who enjoy listening to music when traveling
Comes With: 0.1″ to 1/4″ Adapter
- Adjustable headband
- Highly accurate sound reproduction
- Comfortable for long wear
- A balanced sound with accurate audio reproduction
- Extremely durable
- No detachable cable
Best Open-Back Headphones
Features: Light, open back, and isolated earpads with an ultra-wide frequency response
Perfect For: Anyone who loves to make, record, and mix music
Comes With: Screw-on adapter; free ESI Realphones software
- Ideal for music production
- Amazingly good sound reproduction and frequency response
- Very comfortable headphones
- Lightweight design
- 2″ neodymium drivers
- Doesn’t entirely block the external noise because they are open-back
Best for Beginners
Features: High-quality materials; 40mm drivers with neodymium magnets
Perfect For: Beginners and those who mix and track audio
Comes With: 0.2″ adapter
- Block the background noise
- Extra padding
- Comfortable for long sessions
- Closed-back design
- Great for tracking and mixing
- Has the audio technica sound
- Long, undetachable cable
Best for Tracking
Features: Ergonomic pads; closed back studio headphones with sealed earcups
Perfect For: Individual tracking and monitoring; usage on laptops, mixers, and phones
Comes With: A gold-plated adapter
- Non-clip stable headband
- Comfortable fit
- Excellent sound isolation
- Robust construction
- Provides great sound quality
- You can’t remove the cable
Best for Professional Use
Features: Neutral and flat frequency response; 40mm neodymium magnets drivers
Perfect For: Use in a recording studio and casual use; making music
Comes With: Protective pouch for carrying; gold plated adaptor
- Closed-back (closed ear) design
- One of the best sounding headphones on our list
- Easily foldable
- The cable is too long
Best for Monitoring
Features: Solid bass frequencies; lightweight; easy to carry anywhere
Perfect For: DJs, personal casual listening to music, and monitoring audio
Comes With: Gold-plated 1/4″ adapter; soft carrying bag
- Increased bass response
- Extended frequency range
- Soft earpads and headband
- Foldable design
- Detachable cable
- No audio control
Best for Studio Use
Features: Studio-grade headphones with ambient noise attenuation
Perfect For: Studio use, studio monitoring, and mixing
Comes With: 1 x HD 280 Pro II Headphones; 1 x Screw-Type Adaptor To 1/4″
- Comfortable fit
- Over ears design
- Amazing noise isolation
- Highly accurate sound and frequency response
- Cheap studio headphones, but one of the best headphones on this list
- A bit old-fashioned looking
Best for Long-Time Use
Features: Components and design of premium quality
Perfect For: Young musicians; recording; everyday listening
Comes With: Adjustable lightweight headband
- Closed-back design
- Padded earpads
- Self-adjusting headband
- Wide frequency spectrum
- Clear sound, no matter the genre
- The cable isn’t detachable
And although you’d never want to mix with these, we thought we would throw into the list our favorite pair of noise-cancelling earphones:
Features: Two 1.5″ neodymium drivers and effective noise-cancelling
Perfect For: Gamers, public speakers, and aspiring musicians
Comes With: USB cable; detachable microphone
- Adjustable padded headband
- Flexible microphone
- Compatible with many devices
- Detachable mic
- Amazing audio quality with excellent sound isolation
- No audio controls
- Average battery life
Summary – best studio headphones under 100
Hopefully, after reading our article and looking at our list of the best headphones under 100, you’ll have a little more knowledge of what you’re looking for.
In truth, you can’t really go wrong with any of the headphones above. They really are the best budget studio headphones on the market.
For home studios (or audio engineers), go for either the Sennheiser HD 280’s or the AKG K72’s.
If you’re looking to do home recording as a musician, then go for the ESI eXtra’s or the SonyMDR-7506’s.
And if you’re looking for a fab set of monitor headphones, you can’t go wrong with the Audio Technica ATH-M40x; I think they’re one of the best studio monitor headphones on the market.
Enjoy your search, and drop a note in the comments below to tell us what you decided to buy.
What are the best studio headphones under 100?
All the studio headphones mentioned above are considered fabulous studio headphones under 100. It doesn’t matter which one you choose; each pair would be a great choice. The only thing you should base your decision on is why you need the studio headphones. It may be for tracking, mixing, or simply enjoying your favorite music.
Don’t worry if you’re unsure and simply want affordable, good-quality studio headphones. Audio Technica ATH-M40x headphones are one of the best studio headphones with a price range under 100, so you can’t go wrong with them. They’re great for music production, have amazing features, and have excellent value for money, so when in doubt, this is the safest choice you can make.
What headphones are good for studio?
Studio headphones are durable and provide better sound isolation than regular ones. They should be padded because padded earpads will allow you to wear the headphones even for hours if needed comfortably. Equally important is for the headphones to be lightweight, so they don’t put any weight pressure on your head and ears.
As you already know, all of the above headphones provide these features, making them good for studio use. Plus, they cost less than 100, which makes them cost-effective, especially considering everything they offer. That’s why buying any of them would be a fantastic choice.
What kind of headphones are best for recording vocals?
When you’re looking for the best headphones for recording vocals, always choose headphones that are closed-back. The studio headphones with this design prevent sound bleed when recording your vocals resulting in clean audio. Also, good headphones for recording vocals must provide a flat frequency response for a natural sound when recording.
The headphones for recording vocals need to be foldable. This feature will make it very easy to take them anywhere with you. A pair of Shure SRH240A or the Sony MDR-7506/1 headphones would be great, as both offer astounding quality for a very low-cost price.
Are AKG good studio headphones?
You had the chance to read more about the AKG K72 headphones above, so it’s obvious they’re an excellent choice. Not only are the AKG K72 studio headphones truly considered one of the best studio headphones, but they’re also affordable, have a great frequency response, as they cost less than 100!
The headband is adjustable, and it’ll fit you perfectly. The headphones are very comfortable, so you’ll be able to wear them as long as you want. Other features that make this pair of headphones so good are that they’re professional, comfortable, and light. What’s more, they’re also very practical. You can use them for mixing music, but you can also use them for listening to your favorite artists, as the sound they produce is incredible.