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Setiawan

Open back bluetooth headphones?

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I've never been into headphones, but have recently become interested. I've tried my girlfriend's Sennheiser HD 450's, and enjoy the convenience of being able to connect to multiple different digital sources wirelessly. The one thing I don't like is the closed back nature of them. It feels a little claustrophobic, a little too detached from my actual surroundings. So, I've started looking for open back BT headphones, and maybe I'm just not looking in the right places, but I can't really seem to find any? Or at least, none from reputable brands.

 

Am I mistaken, or is there actually a noticeable lack of open back bluetooth headphones? I'm thinking it maybe has to do with the difficulty of engineering such a product. With closed headphones, you can conveniently place the circuitry and batteries behind the drivers, and if anything, doing so might aid in blocking noise. With open headphones though, there would be a lot fewer places for these components to be placed.

 

In any case, if anyone has any recommendations for open BT headphones (perhaps in the $200 - $300 range), would love to hear it!

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My guess is that the people who would generally buy open back headphones, would not be happy with the compression required to send the music over  bluetooth especially if the source was vinyl.

I know the codecs for the data transmission over bluetooth are improving, but I still would think that a Bluetooth, open back headphone would be a very, very niche market.

Also, if you haven't already, try turning off the noise cancellation in the headphones  - it makes big difference in mine (Sennheiser PXC550)

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Posted (edited)
47 minutes ago, Setiawan said:

Am I mistaken, or is there actually a noticeable lack of open back bluetooth headphones?

The lack of open back headphones is because there probably isnt a huge market for open back bluetooth headphones, don't think it would have much to do with engineering them.  Also there just isn't a market for it as there are also existing products to fix this issue.  People who want bluetooth typically want closed back as they use them outside where you do not want bleed from the headphones or hear the outside world.  So to avoid engineering 2 headphones spending more money on research and development they just make closed back ones.

 

Also there are plenty of bluetooth adapters which would convert open back headphones to portable bluetooth ones, they dont cost a lot if you want to deal with junk, higher quality ones cost a little more.  

Edited by sly_bastard

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3 hours ago, sly_bastard said:

The lack of open back headphones is because there probably isnt a huge market for open back bluetooth headphones, don't think it would have much to do with engineering them.  Also there just isn't a market for it as there are also existing products to fix this issue.  People who want bluetooth typically want closed back as they use them outside where you do not want bleed from the headphones or hear the outside world.  So to avoid engineering 2 headphones spending more money on research and development they just make closed back ones.

 

Also there are plenty of bluetooth adapters which would convert open back headphones to portable bluetooth ones, they dont cost a lot if you want to deal with junk, higher quality ones cost a little more.  

This sums it up really.

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I don't really have a use-case for an open-back, wireless pair of headphones. But if I did, I'd probably buy the Grado GW100 in a heartbeat. 

 

I do use a Grado SR80 (with a modded removable cable) from time to time with an ES100 wireless DAC/amp around the house. It has its moments.

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perhaps they see if wireless they are for on the go...which means you wouldn't want wireless ? strange as am using closed back at home more to not distract others at home at moment given our lockdown :D 

 

as far as open back Grado... I'd encourage greatly to check out. Grado make really great phones and open backs. no idea on their wireless versions ...

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Lithium batteries degrade over time, after which, you'll have to look into replacing it or the entire headphone. For me, I'd rather get a decent wired headphone (or two or three or ten) and a bluetooth module. You can then replace the bluetooth module with whatever the latest bluetooth spec is (Qudelix-5K with aptX Adaptive, LDAC, AAC, aptX-HD support today, something else better tomorrow).

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44 minutes ago, deafenears said:

Lithium batteries degrade over time, after which, you'll have to look into replacing it or the entire headphone. For me, I'd rather get a decent wired headphone (or two or three or ten) and a bluetooth module. You can then replace the bluetooth module with whatever the latest bluetooth spec is (Qudelix-5K with aptX Adaptive, LDAC, AAC, aptX-HD support today, something else better tomorrow).

yep am the same in thinking... also adds weight of batteries as well on top of the BT ability. and then the inevitable charging....

 

still there is clearly a market for it ...

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