Do Balanced Headphones Sound Better?

Audiophiles have long debated the merits of balanced headphones. Some people think they provide a much better sound than unbalanced headphones, while others believe there is no significant difference between them.

Balanced headphones may sound better since they have two audio signals that cancel each other out. This creates a more natural sound that is less fatiguing to listen to. The bass is also tighter and less boomy, and the mids are more forward. Additionally, the highs are smoother and extended.

This article will further discuss balanced headphones and if they are worth the investment!

Table of Contents

Do Balanced Headphones Sound Better?

How Balanced Headphones Affect Sounds?

While regular headphones let sound waves in and blast them straight into your eardrums, balanced headphones cancel out some noise.

This is due to two signal wires that are different but equal in strength and out of phase with each other. When the two signals meet, they cancel each other out, reducing buzzing or humming sounds.

The result is that you hear less of the background noise and more of what you want to hear, whether that’s music, a podcast, or a phone call.

Since they can help you focus and tune out distractions, balanced headphones are a great choice for office settings or anywhere else where you need to be able to concentrate.

But they’re not just for work-they can also help you relax and enjoy your favorite music or audiobooks without being disturbed by noise interference. So if you’re looking for a way to improve your listening experience, try balanced headphones.

You might be surprised at how much of a difference they can make.

Balanced vs. Unbalanced Headphones

There are two types of headphones: balanced and unbalanced. Unbalanced headphones have one ground wire and one signal wire, while balanced headphones have one and two signals.

Balanced Headphone Outputs

Headphone output with two signal wires is generally considered a balanced output. While a single output jack is perfectly fine for most people, a balanced output can offer a few advantages.

The question is, does this extra wiring make a difference in sound quality?

The answer is yes. First, it can help reduce crosstalk between the left and right channels. Crosstalk is when sound from one channel bleeds into the other channel, and it can be especially noticeable when listening to music with a lot of back-and-forth stereo panning.

Balanced output can also help reduce noise, providing a cleaner and clearer listening experience. Finally, a balanced output can provide more power to drive high-impedance headphones.

So if you’re looking for the best sound quality from your headphones, consider investing in a pair with a balanced output.

These headphones have less crosstalk, and audio channels are more distinct, resulting in a wider soundstage and greater detail. In addition, these headphones are less susceptible to electromagnetic interference, so they tend to produce cleaner sound overall.

The Difference in Noise Reduction

An advantage of these headphones is that they tend to have better noise reduction. This is because the balanced design cancels out ambient noise more effectively. Finally, these headphones are less likely to be interrupted by electrical interference. 

The two signal wires are less likely to pick up interference than a single wire. This can be a significant benefit if you live in a noisy environment or want to use your headphones while traveling.

Balanced Cables

Given the confusion about balanced and unbalanced headphone cables, starting with a quick definition of each might be helpful.

A balanced cable has two signal conductors that are equal in impedance to each other but have opposite polarity. The advantage of using a balanced connection is that it helps to reduce crosstalk between the left and right channels.

A balanced cable has two signal conductors that are equal in impedance to each other but have opposite polarity. The advantage of using a balanced connection is that it helps to reduce crosstalk between the left and right channels.

In other words, it minimizes interference between the Left and Right channels, resulting in better sound quality.

On the other hand, unbalanced cables have only one signal conductor and one ground conductor.

Although they are less expensive and simpler to construct than balanced cables, they are also more susceptible to interference. When shopping for headphones, paying attention to the type of cable being used is important.

If you want the best sound quality, a pair of headphones with balanced cables is a good choice.

However, if you are on a budget or don’t need the extra features this type of cable offers, an unbalanced pair of headphones will still provide excellent sound quality.

Balanced Headphones Are Fit for Home Recording Studios

If you’re setting up a home recording studio, you’ll need a pair of headphones that offer accurate sound reproduction. Different headphones are made for different purposes. Some are great for casual listening, while others are designed for professional use.

Balanced Connections

That’s where balanced headphones come in. These headphones use balanced cables to connect to your audio source.

The benefit of using headphones with a balanced cable is that they reduce noise and interference, allowing you to enjoy your music or movies at a higher quality.

Balanced connections ensure that you hear the music precisely as it was recorded. In addition, these headphones have low output impedance, which reduces signal loss and provides a clear sound.

Several factors contribute to the quality of sound in headphones. The type of driver (headphone amplifier), the size of the ear cups, and the material used in the construction of the headphones all play a role in sound quality.

However, one of the most important factors is whether or not the headphones are balanced.

So if you’re looking for something to help you create professional-quality recordings, balanced headphones are the way to go.

How To Spot a Good Pair of Balanced Headphones When Shopping

gray and brown corded headphones

If you’re in the market for a new pair of headphones, you must know how to spot a good pair of balanced headphones. After all, not all headphones are created equal. Here are a few things to look for when shopping for headphones:

  • Look for headphones with a wide frequency response. The wider the frequency response, the better the sound quality will be 20 – 20,000 Hz is the sweet spot, so don’t go beyond that.
  • Pay attention to the noise isolation. Headphones with good noise isolation will block ambient noise so that you can focus on your music.
  • Make sure they are comfortable to wear. You don’t want to get a headache after wearing them for an extended period.
  • Consider the price. Look for something affordable that will suit your needs. Don’t necessarily go for the cheapest option, but don’t overspend either.

Remember these things, and you’ll surely find a great pair of balanced headphones.

How To Set Up Your New Balanced Headphones for the Best Listening Experience

Do Balanced Headphones Sound Better?

Before you can start enjoying your tunes, there are a few things you need to do to set up your headphones for the best listening experience.

  • Once you’ve connected your player to the headphones, take a moment to adjust the fit. Most balanced headphones have adjustable headbands and ear cups, so getting a snug, comfortable fit is important.
  • Take time to adjust the balance control. This control allows you to adjust the relative level of the left and right channels so that each channel is equally loud.
  • Finally, spend some time playing with the EQ settings on your player. A little trial and error will go a long way in helping you find the perfect sound.

This is especially important when using headphones, as it helps to prevent ear fatigue. By setting up your new balanced headphones properly, you’ll be able to enjoy your music collection in the best possible quality.


Balanced headphones sound better because they represent more accurate and natural audio signals.

You’ll hear all the details in your music, movies, and games without coloration or distortion. Balanced headphones are worth considering if you want the best audio experience.

Juan Louder
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Juan Louder

I started SoundStudioMagic to learn how to record my own audiobook at home, and now I'm addicted to all the latest techniques and gear.

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