Best Open Back Headphones for Gaming Review And Guide 2021

Gaming is intense. It requires all your focus and attention. It needs you to invest each of your body cells to the thrill to win.

Although it’s no big deal for passionate gamers, at times, it does become challenging. Despite wanting to give their very best to the game, gamers get often held back by the limitations of headsets. Yes. That’s accurate. That’s the degree of impact of a headset upon one’s gaming experience.

But well, this list of best open-back headphones for gaming aims to help address these very issues. We know how the quality of the headset dictates your gaming experience. And so, we bring you the top ten affordable and premium quality open-back headphones.

With these, you can pursue the purpose of your life without furrowing a brow or fretting even for a second! So, let’s get straight to it!

Sennheiser HD 599
Razer Kraken Gaming
Sennheiser HD 650
Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X
Beyerdynamic 459038
Philips SHP9500
Samson Technologies SR850
AKG K 701 Stereo

Top 10 Best Open Back Headphones

1. Sennheiser HD 599 Open Back Headphone – Top-Rated 

Sennheiser HD 599 Open Back Headphone

Here we have the Sennheiser HD 599 Open Back Headphones that get scrutinized to be one of the best open-back headphones for gaming. This pair of headphones retail at the price of  $199.95, which is not quite bad for the product you’ll receive. It is certainly worth it!

Initially,  you will observe that these headphones have holes in the earcups. It means that they are not closed-back but open back as they claim to be. Open-back headphones are great for video editing, audio recording, and gaming. These headphones are quite professional. And, you can use them by a wide range of consumers, from professionals to on-the-go youth.

Also, like other pro headphones, Sennheiser HD 599 Open Back Headphones got tuned to be flatter. So,  there is no room for excessive-high, mid, and low notes. It makes this pair of headphones the best for gaming. A win-win situation!

The cherry on top is that the cable that comes along with these headphones is detachable! It means that you can swap it out from 3.5-millimeters or 6.5-millimeters and vice versa at any time! Having a detachable cable is just like having a portable battery, totally a deal-breaker!

  • Aesthetic 

  • Sturdy

  • Comfortable 

  • Lightweight

  • Portable  

2. Razer Kraken Gaming Headset – Budget Buy 

Razer Kraken Gaming Headset

The Razer Kraken Gaming Headset is known to be a very affordable headphone retailing at only under 100. As a gaming headset, it comes with well-tuned drivers, and the company has included the gel foam ear cups to make these headphones stand out in the market. Truly a deal-breaker!

As you unpack the box, you’ll find your headset, 3.5-millimeter of cable, a splitter to connect the headset with your PC. As for the comfort level, the ear cups are highly comfortable and cozy to the ears. The headband comes with a thick layer of cushion, adding more to the comfort.

The heavy metallic structure accompanied with soft foam all-over adds to the reliability of the headset. In addition to that, this pair of headphones has a very even sound quality, and you can use it for various purposes ranging from gaming to just listening to music, making it an all-rounder!

Along with being affordable, these are also very customizable according to personal preferences and game settings. Thus, giving the users the best experience at a very low price with all the comfort and accessibility this headphone has to offer.

  • Spacious soundstage

  • Thick padding on the headband

  • Robust built

  • Minimalistic look

  • Affordable

  • No swivel ear cups

  • Slightly heavy

3. Sennheiser HD 650 Open Back Professional Headphone – Premium Pick 

Sennheiser HD 650 Open Back Professional Headphone

Well, here’s the king! Fancy and premium! No wonder it comes from a legendary name, i.e., Sennheiser.

Sennheiser HD 650 features a unique built with a rather metallic feel. As a gamer, we best you will be thrilled by its sharp and arresting aesthetics.

The over-ear ear cups are huge and engulfing, while the thickly padded headband provides comfort. The thick padding of the ear cups and headband balances out the heavyweight of the headset.

Additionally, the greater surface area of the ear cups and the use of premium-grade neodymium magnets bring about maximum efficiency.

Plus, with a wide frequency range of about 12 – 39000 Hz, Sennheiser HD 650 picks every single sound. Yes! We mean it! You can get an idea of it by the fact that you will be able to detect a player standing a good distance from you in a game.

And as you may already expect, it comes with a warranty! You can rely upon the brand to cater to all issues and queries for the complete two years.

  • Unique design

  • Durable

  • Balanced sound

  • Wide frequency range

  • It comes with a 2-year warranty.

  • Heavyweight

  • Expensive

4. Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X Open Air High-Fidelity Gaming Headset 

Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X Open Air High-Fidelity Gaming Headset 

Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X Open Air High-Fidelity Gaming Headphones are amazing headphones. These high-quality headphones have received massive appreciation from the gaming community. 

Audio-Technica is trying to get in the market for providing the best gaming realm by offering innovative headsets. And  Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X Open Air High-Fidelity Gaming Headset is one of them. These are open-back gaming headphones, which means that they are not closed-back like you see in other headphones. Unlike other headphones, the sound is coming around you, not directly to you. That’s so cool!

These are extremely light and comfortable headphones that weigh just 10.05 ounces! Meanwhile, other closed-back versions weigh around 11.28 relatively heavy ounces! 

This headset has 53-millimeter drivers, and they push out the frequency response of 5 Herts to 35,000 Hertz. Hence,  the produced audio is rich and immersive! 

The connection on the tip of the headphones is the 3.5-millimeter jack, and its cable has a length of 1.3 meters with an option to extend available if necessary.

Moreover, it has a three-dimensional wing support system that houses the non-traditional headband. The on-board microphone is small and nimble. Thus, making it good in terms of not just sound quality but accessibility as well.  It is a good choice if you don’t have a loud environment!

  • Immersive sound

  • Lightweight 

  • Comfortable 

  • Sturdy

  • Takes time to adjust 

5. Beyerdynamic 459038 DT 990 PRO

Beyerdynamic 459038 DT 990 PRO

Probing through the market for the best open headphones for gaming, we find one widely chosen pair of headphones that is the Beyerdynamic 459038 DT 990 PRO. 

These are an idealistic choice for gamers who are not true audiophiles. If you can relate, then these headphones are for you!

The build of these headphones is economical but hefty at the same time. The ear cups consist of plastic. It might make you feel that they are of low quality. But, when you use them, they don’t feel like they’ll break easily. The headband of these headphones is very thick and plush, which makes them very comfortable to wear!

These headphones have a very long curled-up cord attached to them. Imaging on this pair of headphones is great too. Most importantly, these headphones can’t get plugged into any controller as they operate at a certain level. Hence, limiting their compatibility.

Furthermore, listening to music on this headset when you’re not gaming is excellent. The sound quality is great, and it is a perfect experience coming up to the level of high-end headphones like Beats 300-dollar headphones. These headphones also come with a warranty card. A win-win situation going on here!

  • Value for money

  • Durable

  • Comfortable 

  • Good sound performance 

  • Classy design 

  • Limited compatibility 

6. Philips Audio Philips SHP9500 Over-Ear Headphones 

Philips Audio Philips SHP9500 Over-Ear Headphones 

The Philips Audio Philips SHP9500 Over-Ear Headphones get considered to be very affordable.  Undeniably, the best open-back gaming headset. 

Also, these headphones have a wide range of frequencies that is from 6 Hertz to 35,000 Hertz. They are even 102 Decibels loud, which means that they can get extremely loud! This pair has 50-millimeter drivers, and it comes in a very well enclosed packaging. 

They have a sleek and very attractive shape. They fit the user perfectly. The headband has a covering of premium foam. So,  you can use them as desired without  feeling worried of them while you game. They have the comfiest ear cups and a very user-friendly structure.

The Philips Audio Philips SHP9500 Over-Ear Headphones come with a detachable cable, which is highly demanded by the users to make the headphones portable.  It makes the headphones easy to use and carry. These headphones are not only the best for gaming, but you can use these headphones for listening to music as well. No doubt a very budget-friendly all-in-one headset!

  • Good sound quality 

  • Comfortable 

  • Sturdy

  • Very affordable 

  • Easy to carry

  • Not good sound isolation 

7. Samson Technologies SR850 Semi Open-Back Studio Reference Headphones

Samson Technologies SR850 Semi Open-Back Studio Reference Headphones  

The Samson Technologies SR850 gives you only the best at very affordable pricing. With a professional-grade audio quality, these open-back headphones deem ideal for in-studio usage. They are so lightweight you can conveniently wear them for extended time periods. 

The circumaural design makes them fit into any head shape or size and enhances their self-adjusting capabilities. Samson designs these rugged headphones to last. Also, they have all the elements to provide you with the best audio quality. 

The high sensitivity even lets you keep track of the faintest to the highest sounds. Moreover, it comes with a stereo adapter that increases accessibility and functionality. 

  • Comfortable

  • Self-adjustable

  • Professional-grade audio

  • Comes with stereo adapter

  • Rugged design

  • Lightweight

  • Not removable cord 

8. AKG K 240 MK II Headphones 

AKG K 240 MK II Headphones 

You can’t expect just-average from AKG, you know. And so, when formulating this list of best open-back headphones for gaming, we were eager to check out AKG’s take at it. We are quite glad to announce: we are not the slightest bit disappointed!

AKG K 240 MK II made it to our list with flying colors. The latter features over-ear earcups with a generous but relatively thin line of padding. For this very reason, we recommend this variant to both professionals and beginners. That’s because such a construction, coupled with its lightweight built, makes it an ideal option for lengthy sessions.

Moreover, the use of 30 mm transducers with Varimotion diaphragms delivers rich, dynamic sound. The use of cutting-edge tech in this headset brings forth a soundstage spacious enough for you to get a lead and direction in gameplay. Some users felt that the mids and vocals are a bit flat. But the powerful bass and accuracy of sound balance this out.

The AKG K240 MKII headphones also feature a professional mini XLR connector and come with both straight and coiled cables. The straight cable measures around 3 meters, while the coiled one’s length is about 5 meters. You will also get a convertible jack plug for connecting portable equipment easily.

What’s more, it comes with a 10-foot long straight cable and a 16-foot long coiled wire. You can interchange and use either of the two as per convenience.

For your ease, AKG also provides a convertible jack plug, which enables connection to portable equipment. So, even if you’re on the go, you can connect it with all your devices.

However, the looks may not satisfy your cravings for super sleek looks. The company preferred using a plain black tone to keep the appearance lowkey.

Well, from our eye, we suppose it’s an undercover benefit! You get to carry the headset anywhere and everywhere without drawing unnecessary attention. Cool and comfortable. Isn’t it?

  • Replaceable earpads

  • Highly Comfortable

  • Good connectivity

  • Rich and spacious sound

  • Detachable cables

  • Lightweight

  • Powerful Bass

  • Sturdy built

  • Average looks

9. GRADO SR80e Prestige Series Wired Open-Back Stereo Headphones

GRADO SR80e Prestige Series Wired Open-Back Stereo Headphones

Grado does it light but does it well. SR80E demonstrates that quite well. The latter comes at a reasonable price and features a minimalistic build. Given these facts, one would expect the performance to be more or less average. But that’s where Grado SR80 takes you by surprise!

These come equipped with cutting edge technology comprising premium drivers and sophisticated engineering. Thanks to this, the sound output of the headset is active, rich, and lively! Unlike most other headsets at this price point, it is neither boring nor unacceptably boomy.

In actuality, the sound is rather balanced. We must admit, the soundstage isn’t as spacious as most other open-back gaming headphones on this list. However, it isn’t what you may term it as depriving soundstage.

With that said, the headband of this gaming headset is relatively thin in construction. Although it contributes to its lightweight and slim profile, it feels slightly uncomfortable because there is no padding on the headband.

The earcups, however, appear to be the entire opposite. They feature thick padding and have an over-ear structure. Hence, they feel comfortable and satisfied during gaming sessions. Such a construction is particularly beneficial for those who wear glasses.

And hey! There’s a cherry on top; it’s a safe purchase, at least for the price point. You will get a warranty for the headphones for one complete year!

  • Lightweight

  • Replaceable earpads

  • Balanced Sound

  • Affordable

  • It comes with a one year warranty.

  • No padding on the headband

10. AKG K 701 Stereo Headphone Level 1

AKG K 701 Stereo Headphone Level 1

The AKG K 701 Stereo Headphone offers exquisite functionality at a budget-friendly price. Comfortable to wear, you can wear these headphones for hours in a row without feeling the least bit of discomfort. The stylish looks give you a trendy feel as well. Also, these stereo headphones are designed-to-last. Thus, offering longevity. 

Their adjustable and flexible design allows a secure fit with comfort. The AKG K 701 Ultra Reference Class Stereo Headphones do not compromise on audio quality at all. They offer dynamic sound quality. Hence you can enjoy the highs and lows of your audio with utmost comfort.

  • Comfortable

  • Durable

  • Stylish looks

  • Dynamic sound quality

  • Adjustable

  • Not for professional use

How to Choose the Best Open Back Headphones?

There you go! Now, you know the top ten best open-back headphones that are taking the market by storm these days.

But here comes the real: how do you choose which one of these is the best pick for you? Well, yes. You’re right there. All of these are the best of the best and hence a good choice for you.

But even so, picking out a model according to your preferences can help you make the best of your hard-earned money! So, here we go!

Things to Consider

An open-back headphone differs from a closed-back headphone in terms of construction. Open-back headphones feature minute openings on the backside while the closed-back headphones have a sealed earcup.

Despite this difference, there are several common features between the two. All of which are worthy of your attention and consideration before purchase. These include:

Wired VS Wireless

Some variants of open-back gaming headphones come with wire connectivity while featuring a wireless design. Wired variants restrict mobility, while the wireless ones don’t.

However, the wired versions are cheaper, and as per tech experts, open-back headphones deliver smoother sound. At times, Bluetooth or other forms of wireless connections can disrupt the sound quality due to poor connection with the internet source or between the devices. On the contrary, wired headphones may develop wire cracks, bents, or fractures.

On-ear VS Over-ear

On-ear design refers to an earcup that fits perfectly atop the ear. It’s a good choice for those who are only getting used to the idea of using headphones for gaming. Since they fit right over the ear, they do not cause irritability for beginners. The same applies to those who wear glasses or are prone to headaches.

Over-ear engulfs the ear and provides an immersive listening experience. However, these may feel heavy or difficult to handle for some users.

Sound Profile

Purchasing a gaming headset without paying heed to the sound profile – that’s probably one of the worst mistakes a gamer can make. The sound is what enables a gamer to track the other players and make their way out of a battlefield successfully.

Generally, almost all open gaming headsets will provide you with admirable surround sound. Even so, when making your final purchase, you need to look in for angled drivers and a spacious soundstage. Deep and powerful bass is always a bonus!


Perhaps, when seeking the best open-back headphones for gaming, comfort is a factor that most games seem to overlook, thinking they will deal with it anyway. After all, they’re gamers, and they know how to tackle.

 Well, we don’t mean to shatter your confidence in your skills. You might as well be good at dealing with practically every obstacle. But why trouble yourself when you can get better options?

When there are options in the market with thicker padding on the headband and earcups, flexible structures, and lightweight built, why buy yourself something hard and irritable?

It will not only enhance your gaming session. But it will also ensure a healthy future for your neck and head. Heavyweight headsets can cause immense strain, and long periods of such pressure can cause permanent damages. Thus, we suggest you look into the comfortability offered by a headset on a priority basis.


Should you get a separate amplifier with open-back headphones?

Not necessarily! Whether you need an amplifier or not, it truly depends on your preferences. Open-back headphones reproduce sound much better, as compared to the closed-back variants, so the chances are that you will most likely not need an amplifier.

Are noise cancellation and noise isolation the same features in open back gaming headphones?

No! Noise isolation refers to the ability of a headphone to block out the ambient noise. It also refers to the ability of headphones to keep the sound from leaking. As you must have already guessed, this is entirely against the working principle of an open-back headset.

Open-back headphones may not feature noise isolation, but they may feature noise cancellation, especially in their microphones. With this feature, the microphones enhance your voice and suppress the ambient noise so the other can hear you.

Final Words

Well, congratulations! Now, you are a pro at choosing the best open-back headphones for gaming yourself! You know about all the top-rated variants in the market today. Plus, you’re well aware of all the aspects to consider before making a final purchase. So, there you go! We hope you settle with one that truly satisfies your needs.

And hey! It’s natural of you to feel a bit torn between the masterpieces given above. Give yourself some time, sort your needs from your wants, and you shall find the best one. If there’s still some confusion, we’ll recommend you to go with our top-rated! It’s affordable with multiple endorsements. You will love it! Good luck!

Last Updated on February 18, 2021

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