Best Headphones of 2023/2024 - Holiday Gift Guide

Best Headphones of 2023 - Holiday Gift Guide

Hey Boys and Girls, Are you looking for the perfect gift for yourself or a Loved\Hated one? Well this HiFiGuide… will help you keep those holiday expenditures down to their absolute minimum (or extravagant maximum!!) so that you get the best bang for your audio buck this holiday season.

Below you will find separate categories for anything you’re looking for; from headphones

I will try to divide the category up into a few price tiers and list just some of the fantastic products I found this year. If you’d like to see a larger selection please check out the categories on hi-fi guides or my review channels linked below.

Best Wired Headphones

Anyone searching for true audio nirvana will want to start with a wired headphone. This allows you to skip past the compression, lag, and unknown characteristics (Codecs/Cheap amplification, weak batteries, etc) of wireless IEM and headphones. All you need do is plug it into a competent amplifier which will be found further down the list.

Going wired also gives the option to have either an Open-back OR Closed-back headphone. Open designs are usually not available on wireless headphones. An open headphone can sound much more natural and less claustrophobic, which is great for long listening sessions. The downside is it may bother other people in the room or office if you play loudly. A closed back headphone offers more privacy, but also less situational awareness (Crying Babies, Potential Murderers) but allows listening in a more public space or with more “Adult” sources :wink:

Basically if you want to watch porn don’t buy open headphones.

Headphone Recommendations Under $50 - $75

OPEN BACK - Koss KPH40 -

Don’t let the look of these headphones fool you, these Koss kph40 punch well above even the next two price brackets! While being very open they deliver enough low end to satisfy. These are considered on-ear and the clamp can be adjusted by simply bending the metal headband until you’re comfortable. Koss offers three different wires you can swap out, Standard 3.5mm, USB-C, or lightning. An absolute must have for any audiophile on the go .

CLOSED BACK - Takstar Pro82 -

Having been a solid recommendation for years, this Takstar pro82 has clean looks, an adjustable slider to increase Bass Response and are credited as being on of the most comfortable headphones available. Has a detachable Cable and comes in Black or Silver

Headphone Recommendations Under $150


These are a Luxurious sounding headphone with Comfort matching that prestige, the ghosts could very well be the First and Last headphone you need to buy. Sporting clean looks and a flat ribbon cable this headphone outperforms everything else in the price range, easily.

CLOSED BACK - Blon B60 - BLON BL-B60 Beryllium-Coated Diaphragm Over-Ear Close-Back Headphone

If you’re looking for maximum wub-wub { aka bass performance } look no further. With their wooden cups and comfortable head strap these headphones will impress all who try them. Delivering a smooth presentation suitable for all types of music. Plus Beryllium Drivers!

Headphone Recommendations Under $600

I’m giving several choices in this category as it is just flush with amazing pieces of hardware.I don’t wanna go into too much detail on each one, just know that there are top picks in the category.


Hifiman Ananda Nano -

Having only heard these at a show I don’t have a review yet. But just take the review below and add 50% more amazing and there you go. Not a headphone to be trifled with. Although the wire always leaves something to be desired. Comfort is perfect.

Harmonicdyne Zues Elite - HarmonicDyne Zeus Elite

The newest addition to my permanent family the elite version of the Zeus brings them far more in line with the majesty that is harmonicdyne. Having enough resolution to test amplifiers and dax in the comfort you could only find from harmonicdyne I feel like these are everyone’s best bet right now.


Modhouse Argon T60 - [T60 Argons — Mod House Audio

handmade in small batches of these headphones punch way above their price point although they do need special consideration for amplification as they are quite hard to drive. If you feel like supporting a creator and not a big company get a set of these modified fostex.

Neumann NDH20 -

one of the headphones I own two sets of. Used almost exclusively for mixing and monitoring , this German engineered set of studio headphones responds perfectly to tubes and really let you know what you’re listening to in an unambiguous neutral way. Their comfort does leave something to be desired as the pads are very stiff to trap sound in and isolate but I’m still going to recommend them as their great

Headphone Recommendations Unlimited Budget

If you’re shopping in this category you’re gonna need a stiff drink and even stiffer commitment to the cause. Having an unlimited budget could mean a $60,000 HE-1 if you wanna really get crazy.

I’ll try to keep it around the cost of a cheap used car and below. You’re Welcome.

Tungstens - Tungsten — Mod House Audio

I’m just gonna come out and say it. Theeese are the best headphone currently on sale. It is made in very small numbers usually released by lottery and the odds of you getting on that list are very slim. If you do manage to snag a single or double sided tungsten you’ll be paying in excess of $1,500 which is actually a STEAL. You will also need to sort out a very competent amplification setup as these are also some of the hardest headphones on earth to drive properly. I recommend a speaker amp and an adapter for the terminals. No, I’m not joking.

Final Audiio D8000 Pro - Final Audio D8000 Pro Collector's Edition Planar Magnetic Headphones –

Remember 8 seconds ago when you read $1500 and freaked out? Well this is the second best headphone I think you can buy… and it’s $4,800 and Made in Japan. The build is precise, the sub-bass is fluid, the comfort is nearly unmatched. You feel like you’re buying something worth the money with this headphone.That is to be expected of Final Audio however. If you absolutely have no issue buying the D8000pro, spend away.

Best Wireless Headphones

We all want to be better people, we all want to be 100% audiophile all the time. However, sometimes convenience is a requirement or a necessity, or you need the benefits of active noise cancelling. THAT is when you come to this section. Getting on a plane? Dealing with a noisy baby? House full of family members you loathe and despise? Just mowing your lawn or out for a jog? you get a bluetooth headphone for the ANC and to avoid wires. Here are some of the ones i heartedly recommend.

AKG K361 BT -

Well not the greatest looking these have enough sound quality to qualify for this list and build quality to last a while

Bose QC45 -

In the cream color and with added deconti pads this headphone remains a staple of my travels . Doing a great job on airplanes and public transport the sound quality is better than you’d expect from Bose an active noise cancelling just under apple

Apple Airpods Maxx -

The best active noise cancelling I’ve ever witnessed including an aircraft headset I tested . Build is unique but the style screams you’re an apple fanboy . Sound is adequate if not good . You’re really buying these for the noise cancelling and not for extreme fidelity . This is coming from someone using the headphones on Android

Sony Wh-1000xm4 -

Certainly more fun than both the apple and Bose offerings , this set is the lightest of the three and has the most fun sound signature and the application to control all the modes is very intuitive . I probably take these over the other two most times