Best Headphones Without Ear Pain (in 2019)

I spend a lot of time in flight from one state to another for my job. I like to use headphones on the plane, whether I’m listening to music or watching a movie (also check out my review of the best Google Assistant headphones here)..

However, it takes less than ten minutes before my ears start hurting and I have to remove the earbuds.

This is because most modern headsets are designed like small plugs with plastic clips.

It’s not at all a comfortable experience especially when you’re spending hours on a crowded plane.

If you’re anything like me, then you’ve probably experienced a similar level of discomfort with the popular headphones of the day.

Even spending a few minutes on the phone using a Bluetooth headset can lead to serious ear pain.

There are even studies that link these small earbuds to a variety of ear and hearing related health problems.

It didn’t take me long to decide that I had to break the cycle and make an effort to find a pain free set of headphones.


Sennheiser HD 4.50 — The Best Headphones Without Ear Pain

Best Headphones Without Ear Pain

If you’re tired of suffering from similar pain, then you’re really going to love the headset that I discovered after plenty of trial and error.

To my surprise, the best headphones without ear pain that I could find weren’t manufactured by the big name companies like Sony or Bose.

They were instead manufactured by a company called Sennheiser. I’m not ashamed to admit that I had never heard of the company before these headphones.

They were recommended to me by a friend at work who had been facing a similar ordeal.


Introducing The Sennheiser HD 4.50

First, let’s discuss the obvious. A major problem with most modern Bluetooth headsets is their design, which is known as the earbud design.

They are made from plastic, covered in silicon, and are meant to be shoved inside the ear.

If that’s not unpleasant enough, there are plastic clips that grab onto the outside of the ear.

If you want to enjoy listening to a headset without suffering from ear pain, then you clearly need to break away from this unfortunate design.

Before earbuds were popular people relied on over-the-ear headphones.

They are larger and can’t be tucked away in your pocket, but they are considerably more comfortable.

Even the most basic of over-the-ear headphones will result in less ear pain than the majority of all earbuds.

But then you have models like the Sennheiser HD 4.50 that are designed specifically with comfort in mind.

The Sennheiser HD 4.50 is an over-the-ear headphone set that connects via Bluetooth and utilizes high-quality noise cancelling technology.

These are features that you find in the most expensive high-end headphones.

However, in terms of price, these headphones can be considered mid-range options.

When you combine high-end features with a mid-range price you have what is called “a smart buy”.


Noise Canceling Technology

High-quality noise-cancelling headphones are very difficult to find in an affordable price range.

The market has been dominated by Bose for many years and their headphones cost far more than I’m willing to spend.

But less expensive headphones with noise cancelling technology suffer greatly in terms of audio quality.

The Sennheiser HD 4.50 manages to deliver amazing noise cancelling technology with sacrificing audio quality.

Noise cancelling technology was particularly interesting to me because I spend so much time using my headphones on flights.

Those flights can be very loud when you consider the noise from the plane, the passengers, and other media devices being used.

None of my old headsets had noise cancelling abilities so I was very excited when I got to try these.

Not only were my ears extremely comfortable during the flight, but I was also able to cut out so much of the excess noise that surrounded me.

This is all thanks to the NoiseGard feature.

One big question that I had was whether or not I would be able to use the noise cancelling technology without listening to any audio.

It turns out that the answer is “yes”.

I can put on the headphones without any incoming audio and enjoy some peace and quiet during long flights.


Sleek And Portable Design

Noise cancelling headphones that are worn over-the-ear are notoriously large and heavy.

That makes them less than ideal when it comes to airline travel.

They take up a lot of space in the luggage and their odd shape makes it difficult to pack them in an organized manner.

Once again, the Sennheiser HD 4.50 finds a way around this design flaw, which is another reason why I really enjoy them.

It turns out that the Sennheiser HD 4.50 was designed with the frequent traveller in mind.

It’s extremely compact and barely weighs more than 8 ounces.

The earcups are very narrow compared to most competitors on the market, but it doesn’t affect the comfort or the noise cancelling technology.

It seems that Sennheiser managed to find the perfect middle ground.


Well Rounded Headphones

This particular headset is designed with Bluetooth capabilities, but it also features a 3.5mm stereo jack and it comes with an audio cable.

This makes it possible to use on any device that might not have Bluetooth capabilities, such as most in-flight movies.

I was very curious as to whether I would be able to connect this headset to multiple devices via Bluetooth.

It turns out that I could.

This means I can connect it to my laptop to listen to music, but also have it connected to my phone so that I’ll hear it ring and can take the call.

Overall, these are an excellent set of headphones.

Not only is the best pair of headphones without ear pain, but it might be one of the best sets in its price range altogether.

The noise cancelling technology and the ultra-portable design also make them a great choice for people who like to travel.

Pros:

  • Comfortable ear-cups that don’t cause any pain.
  • Mid-range price with high-end features.
  • Noise cancelling technology that can be used without incoming audio.

Cons:

  • The small design might not work as well for people with larger heads or ears.

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