Headphone is a tool used to convert electrical signal into sound signal. The electric signal which is produced by the audio player, is converted into sound signal which can be heard by human. The audio player itself can be a Discman, Walkman, Digital Audio Player, Computers, mobile phones, home theaters, and many others.

There are many kinds of headphones. Based on the appearance, headphones can be categorized into 4 types:

1. Circumaural Headphones

2. Supraaural Headphones

3. Earbuds

4. In Ear Monitors (IEMs)

Let’s see the differences among them.


The Circumaural Headphones

Circumaural headphones (sometimes called full size headphones) have circular or ellipsoid earpads that encompass the ears. Because these headphones completely surround the ear, circumaural headphones can be designed to fully seal against the head to attenuate any intrusive external noise. Because of their size, circumaural headphones can be heavy and there are some sets which weigh over 500 grams (1 lb). Good headband and earpad design is required to reduce discomfort resulting from weight.


The Supraaural Headphones

Supra-aural headphones have pads that sit on top of the ears, rather than around them. They were commonly bundled with personal stereos during the 1980s. This type of headphone generally tends to be smaller and more lightweight than circumaural headphones, resulting in less attenuation of outside noise.


The Earbuds

Among audio professionals, Earbuds and earphones refer very small headphones that are fitted directly in the outer ear, facing but not inserted in the ear canal; they have no band or other arrangement to fit over the head. (However, many consumer-quality in-ear-canal systems are also called earbuds by their manufacturers.) The outer-ear earphones are portable and convenient, but many people consider them to be uncomfortable and prone to falling out. Various models are available, starting at very low prices. They provide hardly any acoustic isolation and leave room for ambient noise to seep in; users may turn up the volume dangerously high to compensate, at the risk of causing hearing loss. From about 1990 earbuds have commonly been bundled with personal music devices.



In-ear headphones, like earbuds, are small and without headband, but are inserted in the ear canal itself. They are sometimes known as canalphones. Price and quality range from relatively inexpensive to very high; the better ones are called in-ear monitors (IEMs) and are used by audio engineers and musicians as well as audiophiles.

Thanks to wikipedia.org for the explanation. And thanks to the person who upload the pictures. What a very clear explaining picture.


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