Here at Decoded, we don’t need to know whether you’ve been good or bad this year and whether you deserve your Christmas presents, in fact, we hope you were a little bit bad (just a smidgen mind you). Either way it’s fair to say quite a lot of you will be interested in getting some headphones or earphones all wrapped up under the tree.
My idea here is that the clock is ticking and you don’t have all that much time to compare and search and ultimately make that all important purchase, so I’m going to give you a concise selection that irrespective of what option you go for, someone is going to be happy this Christmas.
I’m going to deal with the obvious first, yes, Beats By Dre. Overly popular and overly priced. Their popularity is based more off being endorsed by celebs, than their sound or build quality, but if you are in the market for a pair and you refuse to accept anything else, then you’d do no harm in opting for these Wireless Studio Beats. If you like your bass really low slung and budget isn’t an issue, then go for it – check here
Bouncing off the back of that eye watering price point, I’d like to return to the classics. Once upon a time, in a club far far away, pretty much every DJ used to wear the ever reliable Sennheiser HD25 cans. Still used by many sound professionals who rely on their solid all round performance. You get amazing sound AND durability (all parts are replaceable IF anything goes wrong) but they’ve not been altered in more years than most DJs have even been alive. You can however pimp them up or buy the limited edition Adidas version here
A relatively new kid on the block, but a brand that has been making serious moves, is the slightly strangely name AiAiAi TMA1 cans (and yes, you’re loved ones will think you’ve made some weird spelling mistake) who have collaborated with various brands to help widen the appeal including pairing up with A-Trak’s Fools Gold label and also with Beatport. If you’re stateside you could even pick a Beatport pair up for a steal right here if you’re Stateside here
If those price points are a tad above budget, then you’d do no wrong opting for the Urbanears Platten headphone. Relatively speaking, these are bang on. They look cool, come in a multitude of colours and sound just fine for the money. The packaging and build are carefully considered too and deserve a little mention here
Finally, if over the ear isn’t your recipients thing and they’d much prefer an in ear option, then hold the front page, as I’ve got the solution to make someone very happy this year. You need to look no further than the Westone UM Pro 10 in ear monitors. They are a serious bit of kit (although not as serious as the UM Pro 20 or 30), but once you use them, you start to hear so many parts of tracks you’ve never heard before. To add to that, they are great when being used for exercise and fit snug when running and generally trying to be healthy. In fact I accidentally tested my pairs resilience by accidentally rowing over the cable TWICE and they are still holding up without any sound impairment. Most importantly these badboys can block external noise on your daily commute, the crying baby on your flight away this festive period or to just truly get in the zone here