During the rise of the digital age, it is not just our screens and handheld devices that have seen some upgrades. While an acoustic piano still has its place in the music world, the digital piano has taken both practice and production to new levels. With it, you want to ensure you can hear every detail of the sound coming from your instrument.
Thankfully, almost every digital piano features a handy headphone jack, so you can plugin and play, the only question is – which headphones are the best for use with your electric keyboard? That is where we step in. We have assembled a list of the best headphones for use with your digital piano, and explained exactly what to look for when you make your choice!
Why Use Headphones For Digital Piano?
As electric keyboards come with built-in speakers, you may be wondering what are the benefits of using headphones instead? Nowadays most digital pianos come with a reasonable set of internal speakers but they just do not compare to the clarity of tones and nuances you will hear through a good set of headphones.
Keep in mind that to really feel the advantages of using headphones with your piano you will want a good quality pair. A budget pair of mp3 style earphones will not offer the same depth of sound supplied by a good pair of over-ear headphones, thanks to the greater soundstage they supply.
There is also the added benefit of being able to keep your sound to yourself, as well as blocking out background noise around you. That way you need not be disruptive or distracted, letting you tune in to your music entirely, with no complaints from those listening around you.
What Is A Soundstage?
The term soundstage refers to the way in which we perceive our distance from a sound. For example, imagine you were attending a live orchestral performance, now picture the clarity and impact of the music from the front row compared to the seats way at the high back of the concert hall. They sound completely different, right?
Thanks to the acoustics within a concert hall, a great range of sound is achieved. The wide spaces, hard walls, and domed ceilings, all specially designed to bounce and reverberate the sound to its listeners, provides a more intense experience than what you would find at an open-air performance. Headphones use a true or virtual sound-stage to mimic this experience.
On the whole, closed-back headphones are more widely available than open-backed. However, are open-backed headphones better for the digital piano is the real question at hand. If you are looking for a more natural sound when playing your digital piano, then open-backed headphones will provide just that.
As the back of the ear cups are open rather than closed, there is less air pressure build-up that can lead to sound distortion. Not only do they provide more ventilation, but the open backs also create a more spacious soundstage than closed-back headphones can. Although both can still give you excellent quality if you purchase the right pair – we will share our recommendations further on.
The downside of open-backed headphones compared to closed backs is the reduction in ambient noise cancellation, as well as additional sound leakage. If you want to completely immerse yourself without outside distractions or wish to practice without disturbing those around you, closed backs may be your preferred option.
Can I Use Earbuds with my Digital Piano?
While technically you can use earbuds while playing your keyboard, for the best quality of sound and superior comfort we recommend over-ear headphones. Due to the earbuds’ smaller size, they do not have the capacity to store sound drivers as large as that of over-ear headphones.
Smaller drivers cannot deliver the same range of frequencies and although they can produce a pleasant sound, they will not clearly depict every nuance in the tone of your instrument. When playing and practicing we understand it is important for a headphone to accurately replicate every note you play on your electric keyboard, which sadly not all earbuds can deliver.
Can I Use Bluetooth Headphones with my Digital Piano?
Although you can use wireless headphones with digital pianos equipped with Bluetooth connectivity, we do not recommend it if you are looking for the best long-lasting, stable connection. Bluetooth headphones do come with the benefit of free range of movement, and there are no cables to untangle before you can sit down and play. The drawback, however, is the lag in sound caused by the latency between the two devices.
What is latency? You may be asking, and how does it affect playing the keyboard with headphones? In layman’s terms, latency simply means the delay between your electric keyboard producing the sound and your headphones receiving them. The bigger the delay, the harder it will be to play due to the unsynchronised audio that you are listening to.
What to look for when choosing headphones for digital piano?
If you like to immerse yourself in your music and play for hours on end, then there are two things you will want to consider when choosing the best headphones for your electric keyboard.
Sound and comfort.
The quality of sound is one of the most important features to look for when choosing the best keyboard headphones for you. If you want to fully experience the complete range of sound that your instrument can deliver then you want a set of headphones that can produce high definition sound. Look for a pair that covers a wide range of frequencies, without compromising on clarity, a strong connection will also ensure there are no drop-outs to disrupt your music.
When playing for long periods of time, wearing headphones can cause your ears to grow tired and hot. Look for a lightweight pair, with comfortable padding and ventilation if you want the greatest level of comfort. Protect your ears from heaviness and sweat, while making sure the music doesn’t have to stop until you are ready.
Can I plug headphones straight into my digital piano?
Many headphones are now readily available with detachable cables sporting both 3.5mm and 6.5mm audio jacks, however, some unfortunately still do not. This can be frustrating if the headphones you have your heart set on have a jack that will not fit into your keyboard. Thankfully there is an affordable and simple solution – a headphone adapter.
While adapters can impact the connection quality, there are many popular choices available such as this one here, that can achieve high-fidelity sound. Look for a gold-plated adapter for superior durability. Gold is a metal resistant oxidation, reducing the chance of rusting that could interfere with your signal strength so you can enjoy playing without disruption or static.
Review of the Best Headphones for Digital Piano
Now for the recommendations. Below we have listed some of the best headphones available for playing your electric keyboard, to provide an excellent level of audio clarity while you practice. Truly immerse yourself in your music and experience your instrument as you never have before with one of the following headsets.
For 65 years, AKG have been producing studio-quality products that help both professionals and audiophiles experience some of the greatest sounds available on the market. If you want to create the most acoustically natural and realistic music with your digital piano, then the AKG K712PRO headphones are an overall great option.
The open-backed design creates a truly wide soundstage with great ventilation for long periods of use.
“Coupled with the wide frequency of 10 – 39800 Hz you can hear every detail and nuance of your instrument as you play”
allowing you to hear your music with incredible accuracy.
As with all open-backed ear cups, background noise reduction is not as effective as closed backs. However, the thick velour ear pads are both comfortable and practical, keeping your ears free from fatigue while helping to isolate some of the noise for you. With a soft genuine leather headband and lightweight design, you may never want to take the K712PROs off.
A certain amount of sound leakage is also to be expected as well from an open-backed design, but maybe forgiven when you hear the clarity of the sound delivered by these headphones. Using specially selected transducers and flat-wire voice coils, the impulse and treble responses are greatly improved in comparison to other models, creating a phenomenal audio experience.
- Spacious Sound Stage
- Wide frequency range of 10 – 39800 Hz
- Thick velour ear pads
- Lightweight and Comfortable
- Specially selected transducers and flat-wire voice coils
- Limited background noise reduction
- Increased sound leakage
2 Sony MDR7506 Professional Large Diaphragm Headphone – Best Studio Sound
A popular choice throughout recording studios and amongst other professional audiophiles, Sony have been providing studio-level audio for years, and the MDR7506 are a fantastic affordable option.
If interested, check headphones for music production.
With 40-millimeter driver units, the MDR7506s are capable of producing highly clear and defined sound. They are also equipped with an impressive frequency range of 10 hertz to 20 kilohertz, allowing you to experience a full range of bass, midrange, and treble with excellent clarity. If you want to hear clarity in every note you play on your digital keyboard, these over-ear, closed-backed headphones are a great choice.
Although the earcups offer great noise isolation, some buyers have mentioned they can become quite hot and uncomfortable after extended use which you may wish to consider before purchasing. However, the non-detachable, 3m coiled cable with gold plated plug, will ensure a strong and stable connection for as long as you do decide to play.
- 40-millimeter driver unit
- 10 Hertz to 20-kilohertz frequency range
- Gold plated plug for reliable connection
- 3m coiled cable
- Generously padded headband
- The cable is not detachable
- Can make ears warm and uncomfortable after extended use
3 OneOdio Wired Studio HiFi Over-Ear Headphones – Best Budget
If you are on a tight budget but do not want to compromise on sound quality then the OneOdio Studio HiFi headphones are the best choice to pair with your keyboard. Too often cost can impact the clarity of the audio delivered by a headset, however, OneOdio’s over-ear design comes built with 50mm neodymium drivers to provide a full range of frequencies.
The tight-fitting, closed, earcups give excellent noise isolation to avoid disruptions to your practice and those around you. Manufactured with a memory protein cotton-filled headband, you can personalize your fit, however, some buyers have reported that the tight fit of the design can become uncomfortable when worn for long time periods and the band is less durable than higher-end competitors.
The braided cable is able to provide a fast and strong connection with your instrument, and the headset provides anti-loosening ports to secure either the 3.5mm or 6.35mm audio jack. Dual ports also allow you to connect to multiple devices at once and listen to the sound of each output at the same time, or share your audio with a friend.
Although these headphones may not be quite as comfortable or long-lasting as some of our higher-end recommendations, if your priority is for quality sound on a budget these are a fantastic choice!
- 50mm neodymium drivers provide a great range of frequencies
- Tight-fitting closed-cups for good noise isolation
- Anti-loosening ports allow for stable wired connection
- Memory protein cotton filled headband
- Studio quality high-definition sound
- Reportedly stiff and uncomfortable for some buyers
- Less durable
4 Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO 250 Ohm Over-Ear Studio Headphones – Best Comfort
If you want a high level of comfort from your headphones whilst ensuring that you still receive defined, high-resolution audio, then check out the Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro. A firm favorite amongst professionals, these over-ear headphones are a great choice for the digital piano.
“With a single-sided 3m coiled cable, you can easily plug the 6.35mm jack straight in and play, with a good range of movement, allowing you to reach every key without restriction.”
It is worth noting that the cable cannot be removed and replaced with an alternative like many other wired options that are available.
Designed with a strong spring steel headband, not only are these headphones comfortable but secure. Sitting easily over the ears, the earcups feature replaceable, velour pads that can be changed and adjusted to maintain maximum comfort. Coupled with the closed backs, the earcups passively block ambient noises around you, eliminating distractions while you play.
Despite having closed backs, the DT 770 Pros are able to create an impressively spacious soundstage for a more natural-sounding audio experience. Any bass is delivered clearly without distortion, while higher frequencies are also produced with excellent detail for a truly high-definition sound, perfect to really notice every nuance in the tone of your keyboard.
- Strong spring steel headband
- Velour padded, adjustable ear cups
- 3m single-sided coiled cable and 6.35mm audio jack
- Spacious soundstage
- High definition audio without distortion
- Non-detachable cable
- Not as easily portable due to long, fixed cable/bulky design
5 Sennheiser HD 599 Special Edition – Best Open-Backed
No list of headphone recommendations would be complete without a pair of Sennheiser’s, a brand that for 75 years have been dominating the audio world. But what are the best pair of Sennheiser headphones for playing a digital piano? The HD 599 open-backed special edition headphones are praised by both musicians and audiophiles alike.
Thanks to the open-backed design, the HD 599’s are able to produce a natural and spacious soundstage, whilst ensuring the clarity of each note is consistent as you play. Sennheiser have engineered this set with their powerful aluminum voice coil transducers, to deliver high-definition sound while minimizing distortion, allowing you to hear exactly what your instrument should sound like.
Unfortunately, the drawback of the open-backed design is the lack of background noise reduction and increased sound leakage. But if this is not an issue for you, then both the sound quality and comfort make the HD 599s a great choice. Enjoy playing for hours on end with the large, velour-padded, ergonomically designed ear cups. Simply plug into your keyboard with the 3m audio cable and lose yourself in the music.
- Natural and spacious soundstage
- Aluminum voice coil transducers deliver high definition sound
- Minimal distortion
- 3m audio cable with 3.5 and 6.35mm jack
- Large, velour padded, ergonomic earcups
- No noise cancellation
- Increased sound leakage
6 Yamaha HPH-50B Compact Closed-Back Headphones – Best Yamaha Headphones
Yamaha are famous for their high-quality goods, from their audio equipment to musical instruments, it’s a brand many know and trust. When creating a list of the best pair of headphones to use with your digital piano, we could not leave out such a prominent brand within the music world.
Available in black and white, the Yamaha HPH-50B can be matched to your instrument for a stylish and professional look when playing. The iconic logo is displayed on the padded on-ear earcups, so you can remain comfortable as well as fashionable while playing. But keep in mind the on-ear design will not block out as much ambient background noise.
These compact headphones do not compromise on sound quality, with an excellent balance of bass and treble so that you can fully appreciate your instruments’ sound. The driver unit also features a 90-degree swivel mechanism, so you can angle the sound perfectly to your ear. Finally, the HPH-50B comes with a 2m aux cable, with a gold plated stereo plug for an uninterrupted connection.
- 90 Degree driver unit swivel mechanism
- Compact design
- Available in black or white
- Padded on-ear earcups
- 2m aux cable
- On-ear fit offers less ambient noise reduction
- No active noise cancellation
7 V-MODA Crossfade M-100 Over-Ear Noise-Isolating Metal Headphone – Best Durability
On top of a high-quality audio experience, we understand that the durability of your Headphones can be just as important. Whether you need them to withstand regular traveling or you are just a bit clumsy, the V-MODA Crossfade M-100 Headphones provide peace of mind with their superior strength and lightweight design.
“The M-100s use an incredibly strong StealFlex Headband, coated in vegan leather, to create an almost indestructible headset that just cannot be matched by plastic.”
Using the CliqFold hinge mechanism, you can compactly fold away your headphones and place them in the convenient Exoskeleton storage case to keep them safe when traveling or not in use. When you arrive at your destination, simply plug in and play to enjoy the impressively wide soundstage for a closed-back design.
With a 5 – 30,000Hz frequency range and 50-millimeter dual-diaphragm drivers, you can immerse yourself in the music you create, hearing every note on your digital piano clearly and precisely. The ergosoft foam cushions, although reportedly small, offer great noise isolation, however may be uncomfortable after extended use if the XL pads are not purchased.
- 50-millimeter Dual-Diaphragm Drivers
- Noise Isolating Ergosoft Foam Cushions
- Steelflex Headband coated in vegan leather
- CliqFold hinge for precision folding
- Exoskeleton storage case
- Immersively wide soundstage
- May become uncomfortable after extended use
- Earpads can feel small
To Wrap Up
Whether you are looking for optimum comfort, excellent noise reduction, or high definition studio-quality sound, we hope our list of the best headphones for the digital piano has helped you make your choice. Here is a quick recap of our recommendations:
- Best Overall – AKG K712PRO Open-Back, Over-Ear Premium Reference Class Studio Headphones
- Best Studio Sound – Sony MDR7506 Professional Large Diaphragm Headphone
- Best Budget – OneOdio Wired Studio HiFi Over-Ear Headphones
- Best Comfort – Beyerdynamic DT 770 PRO 250 Ohm Over-Ear Studio Headphones
- Best Open-Backed – Sennheiser HD 599 Special Edition
- Best Yamaha – Yamaha HPH-50B Compact Closed-Back Headphones
- Best Durability – V-MODA Crossfade M-100 Over-Ear Noise-Isolating Metal Headphone
Take the time to decide which features are most important for your personal preferences and get ready to hear your instrument as you may never have heard it before!