The multiple levels of personal audio

18Written by Costbuys

When it comes to personal audio, which covers ear buds, headphones there are several different types there are to choose from. There are also several add-ons that can make each of them perform better. Here are a few things to look out for when web shopping:

Ear buds

There are two options here, the standard and in the ear. In-ear are now the most popular and completely cut-off outside sound. They also come in different sizes to fit the different sized ear canals. In-ear models provide much better sound than the standard and can do so due to the isolation. There are also Bluetooth wireless versions of both types.

Over-ear

These are what would normally be called headphones. These come in various sizes and levels of quality. As you would expect, the higher the level of quality, the more expensive. There are some models that provide high-quality audio at a discount online but those are hard to find due to demand. As the above, they are available in wired and wireless models. However, the high-end headphones do not come in wireless.

Open back

This is a variation of the over-ear models. These are the same except that the back of the earpiece is open and provide an acoustic effect that increases the sound quality. These are more expensive by default and only come wired.

Upgrades

To improve the quality of most of these, one of the popular upgrades is to use a USB DAC rather than the built-in one on the computer or the phone. Another is to replace various parts of the headphones with aftermarket items to change the nature of the sound.

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