Best Open Back Headphones for Gaming (2020)

We researched throughout the internet and found the best open back gaming headphones, overall we think the HyperX Cloud Stinger was the top pair of open back headphones in terms of bang for buck. Check out our top 5 picks below.

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Top Pick
beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro 250 ohm Headphones, Gray, (459038)
Best Value
AKG K240STUDIO Semi-Open Over-Ear Professional Studio Headphones
Best Pro Pick
Sennheiser HD 650 Open Back Professional Headphone
Best Mic
Sennheiser HD 660 S - HiRes Audiophile Open Back Headphone
Top Wireless
COWIN E7 Active Noise Cancelling Headphones Bluetooth Headphones with Microphone Deep Bass Wireless Headphones Over Ear, Comfortable Protein Earpads, 30 Hours Playtime for Travel/Work, Black
Title
Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro
AKG K240STUDIO
Sennheiser HD 650
Sennheiser HD 660 S
COWIN E7
Prime
Item Dimensions
8.7 x 4.7 x 9.1 in
4.3 x 7.48 x 7.87 in
12.4 x 10 x 4.33 in
10.12 x 4.25 x 12.6 in
6.5 x 3.6 x 7.1 inches
Top Pick
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beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro 250 ohm Headphones, Gray, (459038)
Title
Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro
Prime
Item Dimensions
8.7 x 4.7 x 9.1 in
Price
Best Value
Image
AKG K240STUDIO Semi-Open Over-Ear Professional Studio Headphones
Title
AKG K240STUDIO
Prime
Item Dimensions
4.3 x 7.48 x 7.87 in
Price
Best Pro Pick
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Sennheiser HD 650 Open Back Professional Headphone
Title
Sennheiser HD 650
Prime
Item Dimensions
12.4 x 10 x 4.33 in
Price
Best Mic
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Sennheiser HD 660 S - HiRes Audiophile Open Back Headphone
Title
Sennheiser HD 660 S
Prime
Item Dimensions
10.12 x 4.25 x 12.6 in
Price
Top Wireless
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COWIN E7 Active Noise Cancelling Headphones Bluetooth Headphones with Microphone Deep Bass Wireless Headphones Over Ear, Comfortable Protein Earpads, 30 Hours Playtime for Travel/Work, Black
Title
COWIN E7
Prime
Item Dimensions
6.5 x 3.6 x 7.1 inches
Price

Best Overall

The beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro is not just good for an authentic audiophile experience; it is a work of art in the gaming realm. While it does not have any exclusive gaming features, you can easily take advantage of the DT 990 Pro’s capabilities that improve the overall experience.

Pros:
  • fluffy earpads
  • Best in small enclosed rooms
  • Crystal-clear audio
Cons:
  • Quite pricey
  • Not ideal to bring outdoors

Just when you thought the beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro is strictly for audiophiles, it is quite a fascinating pair of headphones that just suits well for gaming. While it does not include any features that may give you the upper hand when playing multiplayer games and such, it does share amazing aspects: 250 OHM power which gives you more depth in audio and a very strong foundation. It also has a headphone frequency response of 5 – 35.000 Hz; in layman’s terms, this means crystal-clear audio. You do not need to be an audiophile in order to fully appreciate the beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro; it is everything you could ever want on a non-gaming headphone. 

Best Value

The semi-open AKG K240STUDIO is a testament that you do not need to spend a lot in order to enjoy audiophile-quality headphones. And if you carry this onto video games, we are glad to let you know that it suits very well. Wear this while playing your game on any platform.

Pros:
  • Affordable
  • First-class quality
  • Sturdy build
Cons:
  • Switchable jacks are unnecessary

The AKG K240STUDIO is the cheapest on this list but certainly not holding the least strengths. In fact, the AKG K240STUDIO sounds a lot better than most gaming-focused headsets – according to gamers who used it on consoles and the PC. So, what does it include other than an affordable price? According to the product page, the K240STUDIO “delivers even wider dynamic range and higher sensitivity than its well-known and widely-used predecessor. The secret to the semi-open K 240 Studio’s sound quality is the new XXL transducers in acoustically tuned vented enclosures with circumaural (around the ear) pads. The circumaural pads envelope your ears nicely and reward you with smooth, solid bass and well-balanced, articulate mids and highs.” 

Take this with you if you want a considerable entry-level audiophile headphones for gaming.

Best Professional Headphones

Do not take the Sennheiser HD 650 lightly; it is a professional open-back headphone that many audiophiles recommend. But does it work well with video games? With its high range of headphone frequencies and stellar ergonomics, this high-profile pair of headphones will knock your socks off.

Pros:
  • Silk cover
  • Studio-quality audio
  • Amazing in-game sound quality
Cons:
  • Too expensive just for gaming
  • No dedicated gaming features

Used mostly for listening to vinyl records, the Sennheiser HD 650 has features that enhance your gaming pleasure. Whether it is listening to the epic orchestra of God of War, the sounds of mysterious violin in Bioshock, indulging in the music of Death Stranding or even spend some time indulging in the soundtrack of Undertale, the Sennheiser HD 650 is your best buddy when it comes to sound effects and music. According to the Sennheiser page, here are the following features: acoustic silk, a frequency response of 10 dB, and optimized magnet systems for minimum harmonic.

Best Microphone

The Sennheiser HD 660 S is more than just an upgrade to the model 650. While it is still technically a professional open-back audiophile headphone, it includes higher resolutions – significantly higher ones with wider frequencies to assure the broadest audio clarity possible for video games.

Pros:
  • Godlike audio quality
  • Strong build
  • Wide audio range
Cons:
  • Quite big
  • Heavy
  • Expensive

The Sennheiser HD 660 S is known for its high-resolution audio quality. There is no doubt that this expensive headphones was tailored to the strictest audiophiles on earth. While it is not made for gaming, it does have its share of amazing specs that put you in another dimension. It turns video games into a brand-new world – music and audio that you never thought would feel more immersive than ever before. Here are the features according to their product page:  dynamic with low harmonic distortion, 1dB left and right tolerance, 150 ohm nominal impedance para aramid reinforced build and very low handling noise.

Best Wireless

The COWIN E7 is a rare case of high-quality wireless open-back headphones. Audiophiles prefer wired over wireless due to audio transfers but you are not here to read about acoustics and the importance of wires for audiophiles; you are here to know if it is good for gaming. To put it short, it really is.

Pros:
  • Great audio
  • low latency
  • 30 hours battery life
Cons:
  • Microphone not working for in-game chats
  • More expensive than mid-range wireless gaming headsets

The COWIN E7 is one of the few wireless open-back headphones that work properly for video games. non-gaming wireless headphones always suffer from high latencies and lots of delays. However, we are here to tell you that it performs just like any good wireless gaming headset. The COWIN E7 also includes a noise-cancelling microphone but there is a catch; you cannot use it for in-game chats – because the E7 was never made completely for gaming. You can only use it for Discord or phone calls and that’s just about it. But if you want a wireless audiophile-level headphones for gaming, the COWIN E7 is the best choice. Plus, it lasts up to 30 hours.

What We Would Buy

Open-back headphones are great, but to use them for gaming is quite unorthodox to the point where it can anger the most meticulous audiophiles. Oddly enough, they are very good for story-based games with marvelous music and booming sound effects. Overall, the beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro wins as the best for gaming thanks to its specs that can match-up gaming-based headsets and even more. But if you think audiophile headphones are too costly, go for something cheaper – like the AKG K240STUDIO. Yet, if you want a more professional pair of headphones, do yourself a favor and buy the Sennheiser HD 650 or the Sennheiser HD 660 S instead. Or, if you hate wires, go crazy with the COWIN E7.

Editor & reviewer of gear from iOS control pad’s to high-end PC gaming hardware. He’s been gaming since the 1980s and mostly plays CS GO & Overwatch.