Closed-Back Headphones for Gaming: How to Choose the Best Ones

Are you looking for the best closed-back headphones for gaming? You’ve come to the right place as this guide provides a comprehensive look at what to consider while choosing the perfect pair.

Tom’s guide is here to help you make an informed decision and tackle all your gaming needs with ease.

When it comes to gaming, audio is a key component. Quality sound can make all the difference when doing a task like playing an online shooter, but achieving that quality depends largely on the headphones you choose. If you’re looking for a great pair of gaming headphones, you must consider both ear design and sound quality before settling on your purchase.

Below is a comprehensive guide to choosing the best closed-back headphones for gaming.

Explanation of the importance of choosing the best closed-back headphones for gaming

The gaming world has quickly evolved from the days before there were sophisticated headsets available to today’s array of advanced gaming accessories. With the introduction of highly specialized gaming hardware including virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) systems, headphones have become invaluable tools in interactive play. For gamers who rely on headset sound performance as one of their primary resources for interactive entertainment, it’s essential to choose the right type of headphone. One popular choice among gamers is closed-back headphones.

Engaging in a great gaming experience requires accurate directional sound localization and a high-quality immersive audio experience. Closed-back headphones offer optimal sound isolation and superior audio reproduction over open-back headphones, even in noisy environments. Because they completely enclose both your ear cups with a solid casing, the exterior sounds don’t leak in nor does any internally produced noise escape from them either. This ensures that your ears are only hearing what’s absolutely necessary for your game experience – providing maximum concentration on task as well as eliminating distractions from any exterior noise sources such as computer fan noises or loud pets!

Brief overview of what will be covered in the guide

This comprehensive guide will provide a detailed overview of closed-back headphones for gaming and how to choose the best ones. We’ll explain what makes these headphones superior choices for gaming and discuss their key features, such as sound quality, comfort, durability, and more.

Additionally, we’ll cover various types of gaming headphones and their pros and cons so you can make an informed decision when selecting the best pair for your needs.

Finally, we’ll recommend five great options from different price ranges to help you find the perfect model with all the features you’re looking for.

Understanding Closed-Back Headphones

Closed-back headphones are designed to provide a seal between the listener and environment, ensuring that sound cannot escape from the headphones. This creates an immersive soundstage that enables users to more accurately listen to their favorite music, podcasts, or games. Understanding the design and construction of closed-back headphones is important for any potential buyer who wishes to make an informed decision when purchasing.

The most common type of closed-back headphones feature padded earcups that fit over the entire ear, such as circumaural (over-ear) or supraaural (on-ear) models. Both styles feature cups with soft padding and adjustable band sizes, allowing a perfect fit for any user. The cups are often equipped with soundproofing materials to ensure a completely immersive experience. Closed-back headphones also possess a solid back plate that prevents sound leakage or outside noise from entering into the inner workings of the headset.

Furthermore, closed-back headphones generally have richer bass frequencies due to their tight seal around the ears and improved acoustic isolation, as well as a better frequency response than open-back models since all sounds remain trapped inside the headset’s cavity. These benefits make this style of headphone ideal for gaming applications since they provide more accurate in-game cues and enhanced immersion characteristics when compared to open back designs.

Definition and benefits of closed-back headphones

Closed-back headphones are said to be one of the best types of listening devices for gaming. They provide excellent sound isolation and improved bass response, helping gamers to become fully immersed in their chosen game and accelerate their gaming performance.

The design of these headphones consists of two sealed chambers, which basically creates a barrier between the environment outside the headphones and your ears. This barrier prevents external sound waves from entering your ears while providing superior quality audio at the same time. Not only do they offer good noise cancellation, but they also usually produce a more balanced sound, since they prevent sound waves from reflecting off the walls of an enclosed space where most people tend to game.

As well as providing you with an immersive experience, this type of headphone also gives you a clear edge when it comes to online gaming – able to hear distant sounds in greater detail can give you an extra tactical advantage over your opponents.

How they differ from open-back headphones

When choosing a pair of headphones for gaming, it is important to understand the differences between open-back and closed-back headphones. Closed-back headphones block out external noise, while open-back models allow outside noise to reach your ears. This makes open-back headphones ideal for use in loud environments where you want to be aware of your surroundings. Additionally, because open-back headphones do not completely block out external noise they do not suffer from the same sort of sound leak that can occur with closed-back models.

The downside of using open back design in a gaming environment is that they generally have a less punchy bass response than their closed back counterparts. They also do not provide as much isolation from external noises meaning that you may hear more environmental sounds coming through the headphone speakers during gameplay.

In terms of comfort and portability, both types offer comparable results making either model suitable choices depending on individual preferences and needs. Ultimately, the choice will be dictated by what type of environment you plan on using the headphone in or if you need or prefer more sound isolation than ambient noise awareness while gaming; if so then closed back models are generally the better choice since they offer superior sound privacy/isolation when compared to their open back counter parts.

When to choose closed-back headphones for gaming

When it comes to gaming, closed-back headphones can be the perfect choice due to their ability to produce sound in a very enclosed and sealed “room”. This can provide better clarity of sound as well as a more immersive experience for gamers, since there is little or no external noise interfering with the soundscape. Closed-back headphones are also preferred by professional gamers since they provide better concentration and focus on the game itself.

Also, if you have a large living area where multiple people can enjoy video games simultaneously, then closed-back headphones are ideal because they ensure there is no sound leakage when playing on the same system. Not only that, but they are historically more affordable than their open-backed counterparts and offer excellent value for money. Finally, when tracking audio used for game streaming or competitive gaming livestreams as well as competitive gaming tournaments (such as esports events), most participants use closed-back headphones.Open-back vs. Closed-back Headphones: What's the Difference?

Factors to Consider When Choosing Closed-Back Headphones for Gaming

Closed-back headphones for gaming can be a tricky purchase. Several factors should be considered before investing in the right one for your gaming needs. Here are some of the key features to consider when making that critical decision:

-Soundstage: Soundstage is a term that refers to the ability of headphones to simulate an open environment or speaker field. This indicates how well a headphone can separate tones and sounds coming from different directions — creating an immersive experience. Headphones with higher fidelity soundstages are ideal for gamers because they allow users to experience sound cues accurately and feel immersed in their game.

-Drivers: When it comes to sound quality, it all boils down to the drivers of a headset. Large drivers in closed-back headphones need more internal space, while smaller drivers are compromised at the expense of negligible external sound leakage. There is no ideal size when it comes to driver size; however, bigger ones usually mean better audio quality.

-Impedance: Impedance is measured in ohms and describes how much power an audio source will have over a headpiece’s electrical resistance. High impedance headsets require larger amounts of power from an external source (like amplifiers or receivers), whereas low impedance headsets don’t need as much output from their signal sources — perfect for portability and gaming on mobile devices like phones or tablets!

-Comfort Level: Comfort is essential when using any type of headphone, especially if you plan on wearing them for extended periods during gaming marathons! Look out for foam earpads and headband padding (for those who wear glasses) as these details make a world of difference in terms of comfort level. Closed back headphones offer superior noise isolation so make sure you look out for models with earcups that fit snugly around your ears without being overly tight or squeezing too lightly against them over longer periods!

Sound quality

The sound quality of a pair of closed-back headphones is greatly determined by its drivers. Drivers are responsible for producing the desired audio output and enhancing the overall sound. The size and type of driver will also have an impact on sound quality, so it’s important to pay attention to the specifications before investing in a particular product.

The larger the driver size is, the more air movement it can generate and consequently, the better bass response you’ll experience. Mids, highs and low-end all contribute to an immersive gaming experience, so it’s essential that all aspects are present—this is where having good drivers comes in handy!

Open-back headphones tend to produce more accurate sound quality due to their open design, while closed-backed headphones focus on preserving isolation by blocking external sounds from entering your ears without distorting audio output.

Frequency response

When selecting a set of closed-back headphones, one of the most important characteristics to consider is frequency response. Frequency response is the range or bandwidth over which the headphones can reproduce sound. This is typically measured in Hertz (Hz), with a lower cutoff frequency and an upper cutoff frequency. The lower cutoff determines the level of bass that can be heard, while the upper limit determines how loud and clear the treble will be. On a graph, the frequency response looks like a range of mountains with peaks representing different volumes at different frequencies. Closed-back headphones generally have less extreme peaks and valleys than open-back counterparts, leading to flat or neutral responses overall.

Having a wide frequency response also ensures that any extra details in soundtracks and audio recordings are heard without any distortion. To ensure maximum accuracy, try to find models with frequency responses ranging from 20 Hz up to at least 20 kHz – this should cover everything from bass and mids to highs and beyond.


Impedance is a key factor that affects sound quality, comfort, and power performance. It is also helpful when determining compatibility with amplifiers or receivers. At its core, impedance measures the amount of electrical resistance present in your headphones. The higher the impedance value, the greater the electrical resistance of the headphones and vice versa. In general, headphone impedance can range from 16 ohms (low) to 600 ohms (high).

Most gaming headsets feature moderate to low impedance making them flexible enough to work across multiple types of audio sources such as PCs and game consoles. Good quality gaming headsets are usually built with an impedence of between 30-50 ohms for optimized performance on both mobile and desktop platforms. Higher impedances may allow for more detailed sound but will require additional power from a dedicated amplifier or receiver to drive them adequately at loud volumes.

Low impedance headphones are designed for smartphones and portable device use as they require significantly lower voltage or wattage than their higher-impedance counterparts do. As a result, low-impedance models tend to be somewhat less efficient than higher-impedance ones in terms of sound quality.


Sensitivity is closely related to impedance — the lower your headphones’ impedance, the higher their sensitivity. The general range of headphone sensitivity is between 90 dB and 120 dB, but it’s worth noting that this is affected by frequency. Generally, higher frequencies require less power to reproduce than lower frequencies.

If you’re looking for maximum loudness and clarity, look for headphones with high sensitivity ratings — typically over 117 dB — but keep in mind that any headphone delivering more than 120 dB of sound pressure can cause hearing damage if used at excessively high volumes. If you use headphones frequently in noisy environments, it’s a good idea to look for models with higher sensitivities.The 4 Best Gaming Headsets | Reviews by Wirecutter


Choosing the right closed-back headphones for gaming is an important decision. You want to find headphones that are comfortable, provide great sound, and have a good fit. When deciding which ones are best for you, there are a few things to consider: budget, type of game, sound quality, isolation, and portability.

When it comes to buying closed-back headphones for gaming, it’s important to know what you’re looking for and where you should look for the best products that fit your needs. Doing some research online can provide valuable feedback from gamers who have tried various products so you can make an informed decision. Additionally, reading reviews from customers on each item can help narrow down your selection as well as eliminate any potential disappointments with your purchase.


How do I choose the best gaming headphones?

When choosing the best gaming headphones, there are a few factors to consider such as sound quality, comfort, build quality, and features like microphone and wireless connectivity. It’s important to consider your budget as well as your gaming needs before making a decision.

Are closed headphones better for gaming?

Closed headphones can be better for gaming because they provide better noise isolation and can prevent sound leakage. This can help you focus on your game without getting distracted by external noises.

What is better for gaming closed-back or open back?

It depends on personal preference and the type of gaming you do. Closed-back headphones provide better noise isolation, while open-back headphones provide a more natural soundstage. Open-back headphones can also be more comfortable to wear for extended periods of time.

What headphones should I use for gaming?

You should use headphones that are comfortable, have good sound quality, and fit your budget. It’s also important to consider whether you need a built-in microphone or wireless connectivity.

Are normal headphones OK for gaming?

Normal headphones can be used for gaming, but they may not provide the best sound quality or comfort for extended gaming sessions. It’s recommended to use headphones that are specifically designed for gaming.

Why gamers prefer wired headphones?

Gamers prefer wired headphones because they provide a more reliable and stable connection with minimal latency. This can be important for fast-paced games where even a small delay can make a big difference.

Why are most gaming headsets closed-back?

Most gaming headsets are closed-back because they provide better noise isolation and prevent sound leakage. This can help you focus on your game without getting distracted by external noises.

Should gaming headphones have bass?

Gaming headphones should have balanced sound quality, including a good bass response. This can enhance the gaming experience by providing more immersive and impactful audio.

Is Bass important in gaming headphones?

Bass can be important in gaming headphones as it can enhance the sound effects and provide a more immersive experience. However, it’s important to have a balanced sound quality overall.

How loud should my headphones be for gaming?

The loudness of your headphones for gaming should be set at a level that is comfortable for you and does not cause discomfort or hearing damage. It’s recommended to follow the 60/60 rule, which is to listen at no more than 60% volume for no more than 60 minutes at a time.

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