The Best Open-back Headphones for Gaming Experiences

Eric Chan

Your headphone choice can have a considerable impact on the gaming experience. Closed-back headphones are a common choice compared to open-back headphones. Compared to closed-back headphones, open-back headphones don’t confine sound and offer a more realistic gaming experience. 

The difference between closed-back headphones and open-back headphones comes down to audio quality. Open-back headphones don't have a plastic cover at the back to allow more airflow. This, in turn, changes the way games and voice chat sounds. Gamers have described them as having a more natural and realistic listening experience.

Open-back headsets tend to appeal more to gamers, music lovers, and audiophiles. As the gaming experience appeals to more audiences, more open-back headphones for gaming sessions are appearing. A dignitary gaming session will require finding quality open-back headphones that come with a microphone.

Open-back headphones lower the isolation level between you and your surroundings to deliver an immersive gaming experience. The unique design produces a spacious soundstage that makes you feel like you're listening through speakers in the room rather than something directly on your ears.

The Best Open-back Headphones for Gaming

1. Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X Open Air High-Fidelity Gaming Headset

Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X Open Air High-Fidelity Gaming Headset
  • Advanced 53 mm drivers provide extremely accurate sound reproduction for FPS (first-person...
  • Open-air design provides unrivaled sound quality clarity and comfort
  • Improved 3D Wing Support system offers hours of comfort and a secure fit
  • Audio-Technica's state-of-the-art microphone enables crystal clear in-game voice...
  • Simple volume control and locking microphone mute switch enable one-hand operation

Top of the list is the Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X headphone. It will render you entranced in an outstanding gaming experience thanks to the giant 53mm drivers that pump up pronounced sounds across all frequencies. The Audio-Technica ATH-ADG1X open-back headphone is bound to shine in fast-paced games, where you'll need to hear your enemy’s footsteps for victory.

This specific model is well known for its superb ergonomics, especially since the 3D Wing Support system that the Audio-Technica integrates lets the headband adapt to the head posture. Additionally, the ear pads are well padded with foam that makes them ideal for extended gaming sessions.

It has an in-built microphone that supports noise cancellation. This means that your audio communication with the team is no longer set back.

Audio-Technica also includes a windscreen on the microphone to enhance the audio clarity further. The audio mic has a volume and mute switch, so you won’t have to use the push-to-talk button.

All these features rank it as one of the best open-back gaming headphones.


  • It has an impressive frequency response.
  • It has a comfortable headband and ear pad set.
  • It has a premium Gooseneck high response noise-cancellation microphone.
  • It has a windscreen on its microphone.
  • It has a 2-meter extension cable for your PC gaming.
  • It has advanced 53 mm drivers that provide accurate sound reproduction for First-Person Shooter and other games.


  • The 53 mm drivers add the overall weight.
  • It's relatively pricey.

2. EPOS I Sennheiser GAME ONE Open-back Headphones

EPOS I Sennheiser GAME ONE Gaming Headset, Open Acoustic,...
  • Signature Sound Dynamics -Engineered For Incredibly Natural And Accurate, High Fidelity...
  • Noise-Canceling Microphone - The Flexible Boom Arm Easily Adjusts For Best Voice Pick-Up...
  • Open Acoustics - The Classic High-End Open Acoustic Gaming Headset Is Designed For...
  • Quick Volume Adjusting – An Integrated Volume Control Is Built The Right Ear Cup Of The...
  • Open back design keeps head cool while delivering extreme sonic clarity and accuracy...

The Sennheiser gaming headsets' level of comfort quality is primarily targeted at gamers.

These gaming headphones are moulded into a lightweight frame that won’t burden the gamer's head. The ear pads are upsized with velour to improve the immersion and give you long-term comfort. Regarding volume controls, they’re ingeniously placed on the right ear cup for easy access.

Among other perks, the Sennheiser Game ONE is powered by Sennheiser’s noteworthy drivers that provide a realistic sound quality experience, especially with the acoustic open-back design in the equation. 

It's built for convenience, with a microphone that features active noise cancelling that lets you effortlessly mute the audio. You can mute the audio by raising the boom arm to the headband’s level. 

The pair has an integrated cable that is durably made of braided fabric and that has a separated the audio and mic jack. If your gaming rig supports an audio-mic combo output, the gamer will need a gaming splitter.

Overall, the Sennheiser headphones are crafted with the gamer's comfort and sound quality in mind. The Sennheiser is excellent for gamers who spend a considerable amount of time in gaming.


  • It's a multiplatform gaming headphone. The included cables make it compatible with the PS4, PC, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and Mac.
  • It has a classic slim and lightweight design It has a proprietary speaker system that delivers the bass extension that is balanced with the other frequencies for next-level acoustic clarity.
  • It has a microphone with a flexible boom arm to easily adjusts voice pick-up positioning, minimises background noise, and conveniently mute.
  • It has a volume knob that is built on the right ear cup.


  • The Sennheiser has a slim profile that may be a little uncomfortable for some users.
  • The volume control doesn’t have a zero per cent minimum volume option.

3. Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X Audiophile Open-Air Headphones

Audio-Technica ATH-AD700X Audiophile Open-Air Headphones Black
  • 53 mm drivers reproduce clear treble and midrange. Connectivity Technology: Wired
  • Bobbin-wound CCAW voice coils for superior power handling. Impedance: 38 ohms
  • Sensitivity: 100 dB/mW . Full open-air type headphones produce no sense of pressure on the...
  • Lightweight aluminum honeycomb casing with excellent acoustic properties
  • Self-adjusting 3D Wing Support provides a comfortable listening experience; total ear-fit...

Audio-Technica staunchly continues in the tradition of providing excellent and quality sound devices for audiophiles. The AD700X is a breathable, smart headphone with a tremendous soundstage that makes the gamer’s life much more comfortable. 

With excellent input, these open-back headphones offer a next-level sound clarity that works impressively in first-person shooter games such as Half-Life, CSGO, and games that require an extensive pick-up of sound for a more enjoyable experience. 

The trebles and mids of the ATH-AD700X are outstanding, and the 53mm drivers on the open-back headphones help them achieve this feat. The open-back headphones feature an elastic TPE sheath, which makes the wireless prone to entanglements.

What's more, the 53mm driver gives an excellent treble reproduction, and the comfortable pads on the headset can allow you to wear them for long hours. Overall, these gamer headphones are one of the best open-back headphones when it comes to gaming.


  •  It has an adjustable headband with a 3D wing support system.
  • It has an excellent treble and mids.
  • It has an open-air honeycomb mesh design that makes it lightweight, giving it maximum breathability and to reduce pressure buildup.
  • It has an outstanding directional sound that works perfectly for gamers.
  • It has a clean and dapper design.
  • It has a flexible headband and padded earpads for comfortable wear.


  • The cable is non-detachable.

4. Beyerdynamic DT-990 Pro Open-back Headphones

beyerdynamic DT-990 Pro Acoustically Open Headphones (250 Ohms) with...
  • Bundle Includes: Beyerdynamic DT-990 Pro Acoustically Open Headphones (250 Ohms) and Hard...
  • Type: It is an open diffuse-field studio headphone (250 ohms) with a dynamic transducer
  • Diaphragm: It is an extremely lightweight diaphragm for superb impulse performance
  • High-Frequency Response: 5 to 35,000 Hz frequency response and offers excellent sound...
  • Comfortable for Extended Period Use: Soft ear pads and adjustable, sliding, earpieces...

Beyerdynamic is a German company that has long produced sound devices for acoustic performance. The Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro are a reminder of this excellent audiophile device tradition. The DT 990 Pro headphone is perfect for music production in studios and works as good for gamers.

This versatile headphone has a pronounced bass quality that most open-back headphones hardly achieve, making them a great choice for gamers who would like a wholesome experience as they play games or watch movies.

The Beyerdynamic 990 gives a professional sound quality with ease and build quality that assures gamers durability in a premium all-plastic design. These gaming headphones have a wide soundstage that gives an accurate directional sound reception.

Moreover, the headband has plenty of cushion that is enough even for wider heads. The clamps also loosen up on subsequent usage. These open-back gaming headphones produce a well-balanced high-fidelity sound with utmost comfort for gamers. 

Overall, it is one of the best open-back all-rounded headphones.


  • It has a premium sturdy plastic construction for durability.
  • It has a high-fidelity sound.
  • It has an impressive soundstage capability making it gamer-friendly.
  • It has an excellent bass quality for an open-back design.
  • It has an excellent sound-fidelity.
  • It has an outstanding sound quality that doesn't use an equaliser.
  • It comes with a large Knox gear hard shell headphone case.


  • The coiled cable is un-detachable.

5. Philips SHP9500 Gaming Headset

PHILIPS SHP9500 HiFi Precision Stereo Over-Ear Headphones (Black)
  • 50mm neodymium drivers deliver full spectrum of sound
  • 1.5m cable gives you freedom of movement for indoor use
  • Comfortable double layered headband cushion, breathable ear cushion for longer wearing...
  • Finishing of connector: gold-plated, acoustic system: open, Magnet type: neodymium

Philips is a leading brand that continues to manufacture quality electronic gadgets. These open-back headphones for gaming are not any different. They still deliver a top-quality sound experience that works for gamers and audiophiles alike. 

The Philips headphones have a sturdy plastic build quality that resists bending and holds a steel headband which is the most vulnerable part for a premium all-round experience. 

The SHP9500 is a high-end headphone rated as one of the best open-back headphones for gaming available in the market. It has an impressive overall experience thanks to the 50mm neodymium drivers with an outstanding high frequency and remarkable Mids.

It has angled drivers that make sure that they are perfectly latched on your ears for the best gaming sound experience. Additionally, the open-ended design doesn't allow any pressure buildup for comfortable listening sessions.

Interestingly, it has an extra padded dual metallic headband setup that is durable, breathable and convenient for long gaming sessions.

For these reasons, the Philips SHP9500 gives a crisp sound that is well-balanced with an excellent soundstage that makes it perfect for the gamer in you, and it also makes excellent audiophile headphones for audiophiles.


  • It has 50 mm, neodymium drivers for an outstanding HiFi sound.
  • It gives such outstanding gaming qualities at an affordable price.
  • It has a premium build quality for its price point.
  • It has a great soundstage capability for realistic sounds.


  • They experience some sound leakage while using, which makes them not suitable in a small room.
  • They don't have replaceable ear pads.

Factors to Consider When Buying Open-back Headphones for Gamers

1. Quality

The design quality and audio quality depend on the quality of the materials. Premium quality headphones for gaming have high fidelity to ensure that you don't get any distortion.

2. Construction

The best headphones are highly comfortable and are padded with super-soft ear pads and a double-padded headband. Some are placed at a very reasonable price.

3. Drivers

Drivers are essential components used to produce sound signals headphones. In most headphones, the drivers are of great quality.

Since drivers are not sealed, the driver has to be durable and sturdy. For top fidelity sound, consider getting headphones with magnetic drivers.

If an accurate and authentic sound reproduction is essential to you, consider going for headphones with planar or magnetic drivers.

Note that the driver size is important too. The driver size determines how well some of the frequencies will be produced. For an effective low frequency, i.e. the bass, a driver in the size of 40 mm or above is ideal. Most of the headphones reviewed have a standard 50 mm driver.

4. Size

Most headphones are supra-aural, which means that they cover the ears entirely. Some headphones can be circumaural, meaning that they cover the ears partially. The size doesn't have much to do with the sound quality and vocals, but it affects overall experience and comfort.

The best open-back headphones for gaming should have the appropriate padding on the headband and ear cups to provide comfort for longer gaming sessions. However, the extra earpad material is not always the best because then it means it increases the weight.

Frequently Asked Questions on An Open-back Design Gaming Headset

A. What is the impedance, and how does it affect the sound quality?

Impedance is the resistance experienced by an audio signal passing through the headphones. It can be rated either high or low depending on whether the headphones have in-built amplifiers to deal with a low impedance. However, the higher rating devices need a specialised amp to sound good. For instance, a high impedance headphone won’t sound good on a smartphone since it doesn’t have an amplifier.

B. Wired or wireless headphones?

Generally, wired headphones perform better and are less pricey than wireless headphones. The lag and longevity problems have been somewhat resolved, but even then, high-quality wireless headphones definitely cost more.

C. Can gaming headsets be used for everyday tasks?

Open-back headphones are not for everyday use, and there's no all-rounder. They lack the low bass, which makes listening to music great on headphones. However, the Beyerdynamic headphones come somewhat close.

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