The City. Depending on where you live, that could be LA, Seattle, or NYC. It’s the latter for us, but many of the same rules apply no matter which urban setting you belong to. Everything is faster in The City, and you probably change your setting more times than you change your clothes.

One thing that doesn’t change, however, is your need for some space. While it isn’t always afforded to you physically, one preferred way to “get away” from it all is putting on a pair of headphones and drifting off. Which ones, though? As mentioned earlier, there are different places you might want your ear candy, and not all headphones are created equally. Well, you’re in luck! We’re going to help you with our top rated headphones for each category.
Just in case you were wondering, none of them are Dre Beats.

At Work
Sennheiser Momentum

Sennheiser is likely a brand that you’ve heard of before, and with good reason. This German manufacturer is among the most popular in quality headphones, microphones, wireless transmission solutions etc… Their Sennheiser Momentum are among the newest in the line of portable headphones. Sleek, and comfortably light on the ears, these are made for long-term listening. The sound signature deviates slightly from how Sennheiser traditionally tweaks their headphones, in favor of a warmer more colorful sound. They also come with a three button microphone which makes it considerably easier to adjust the volume or stop your music entirely when someone needs those TPS reports post haste. You can also use the built in microphone to answer important phone calls, and juggle seamlessly between your work and your relaxing music.

On Your Commute
V-Moda Crossfade M100

When you leave work, and start to head home you will probably notice that you’re not the only one with headphones on. Here in NYC, it’s actually pretty common to see half of your subway car hooked up by the head to a portable music device. What they might not have, however is your superior sense of style for picking the Crossfade M100s by V-Moda. Available in a variety of colors, and interchangeable faceplates, choose the combination that will blend seamlessly with your outfit. You can even go the extra mile and have the faceplate etched with a unique design of your choosing – ensuring that no other soul on the car will have your headphones. But don’t make the mistake of thinking these headphones are just about style. Often referred to as a ‘bass head’s delight’, these headphones have both the clarity, as well as all the oomph you’ll ever need. As an added bonus, it comes with a sweet carrying case, and an extra cable with remote + microphone.

At Home
HiFiMAN HE-400

There are some sacrifices you’ll need to make when leaving your home. You don’t want to take anything you care about too much with you – just in case you lose it. At home you have everything that you wouldn’t want to take with you. Maybe it’s your old vinyl collection? A headphone amplifier you might not want to carry outside? Well, when you’re comfortable in your own abode you can let it all hang out. A headphone that inspires you to indulge a bit more than you should is the HE-400 by HiFiMAN. These aren’t your usual headphones – the drivers themselves are in many cases like nothing you’ve ever heard from a headphone before. That’s because they’re made completely different. Instead of a diaphragm attached to a coil at one point and driven from the center, the diaphragm in the HE-400s are laced with an array of gold leaflet. They are then suspended in a magnetic field and move accurately as a signal from your listening device causes them to shift position in the magnetic field. The result is so natural and warm, they’ll transport you into whatever concert, studio, or motion picture you happen to be enjoying.

Of course, you don’t have to take our word for it. There are plenty of other headphones out there you might prefer – and we’d like to hear all about it! If you’re still not sure, we know some cool cats at AC Gears NYC that could help you out.

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