Monitor headphones are headphones that are designed to deliver accurate and neutral sound reproduction, without any artificial enhancements or coloration. They are often used by musicians, producers and audio engineers who need to hear every detail of their recordings or mixes. But are they good for gaming too?
The answer is not so simple, as different gamers may have different preferences and expectations when it comes to sound quality. Some may prefer a more immersive and cinematic sound, with powerful bass and surround effects, while others may value clarity and precision, with balanced frequencies and spatial awareness. Monitor headphones can offer some advantages and disadvantages for gaming, depending on what you are looking for.
Advantages of Monitor Headphones for Gaming
One of the main advantages of monitor headphones for gaming is that they can deliver a very detailed and realistic sound, with minimal distortion or interference. This can help you hear subtle cues and nuances in the game audio, such as footsteps, gunshots, explosions, dialogue and environmental sounds. You can also appreciate the sound design and music of the game more fully, as monitor headphones can reproduce the original sound as faithfully as possible.
Another advantage of monitor headphones for gaming is that they can provide a wide and accurate soundstage, which is the perceived size and location of the sound sources around you. This can enhance your sense of immersion and presence in the game world, as well as your spatial awareness and positioning. You can pinpoint where your enemies or allies are coming from, and react accordingly. Monitor headphones can also create a more natural and open sound, as they often have an open-back design that allows some air and sound to pass through the ear cups.
Disadvantages of Monitor Headphones for Gaming
One of the main disadvantages of monitor headphones for gaming is that they may not suit everyone’s taste or preference when it comes to sound quality. Some gamers may find monitor headphones too flat or boring, as they lack the extra bass or treble boost that some gaming headsets offer. They may also miss the surround sound effects that some gaming headsets provide, which can create a more immersive and directional sound. Monitor headphones may not be able to deliver the same level of excitement or impact that some gamers expect from their game audio.
Another disadvantage of monitor headphones for gaming is that they may not be very comfortable or convenient to use for long gaming sessions. Monitor headphones tend to be heavier and bulkier than some gaming headsets, as they have larger drivers and ear cups. They may also have a tighter clamping force on your head, which can cause fatigue or discomfort over time. Monitor headphones may also require a separate microphone and amplifier to use with your PC or console, as they often have a high impedance and low sensitivity that need more power to drive them properly.
Monitor headphones can be good for gaming if you value accuracy and realism over immersion and excitement when it comes to sound quality. They can offer a very detailed and neutral sound reproduction, with a wide and accurate soundstage that can enhance your spatial awareness and positioning in games. However, they may not suit everyone’s taste or preference, as they lack the extra bass or treble boost and surround sound effects that some gaming headsets offer. They may also not be very comfortable or convenient to use for long gaming sessions, as they tend to be heavier and bulkier than some gaming headsets.
Ultimately, the best headphones for gaming are the ones that suit your personal needs and preferences. You may want to try out different types of headphones before making a decision, or read some reviews from other gamers who have used them. Some examples of monitor headphones that are popular among gamers are:
- Beyerdynamic DT 900 Pro X: This over-ear, open-back planar magnetic gaming headset features a lightweight magnesium frame and a design that mirrors the rest of the company’s LCD lineup.
- Sennheiser HD650: This over-ear, open-back dynamic headphone is one of the most revered audiophile headphones in the market, with a smooth and balanced sound signature.
- Drop + Epos PC38X: This over-ear, open-back dynamic gaming headset is a collaboration between Drop (formerly Massdrop) and Epos (formerly Sennheiser Gaming), with a clear and natural sound quality and a detachable microphone.
- Nuraphone Headphones: This over-ear/earbud hybrid headphone uses active noise cancellation and personalized sound profiles to create a unique listening experience for each user.