The 12 Best Tracks to Test Headphones With (2023)

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Buying a new pair of headphones can be a daunting task, especially when you consider the hundreds of different options available in the market. Sure, you could go with the best-reviewed option, but how do you know if it'll be good for the kind of music you listen to?

Audiophiles usually have a dedicated playlist that they use to test headphones with. But, if you don't, here's our collection of tracks to put a new pair of headphones through its paces.



1. Bohemian Rhapsody Remastered (2011) by Queen

The 12 Best Tracks to Test Headphones With (1)
(Video) Best 8D song EVER experience with headphones 🎧 2021

From the echoes of the chorus to the multi-layered harmonies and the instantly recognizable opera sections, Bohemian Rhapsody is more than just a song; it's a story told in sound waves that have reverberated throughout generations.

Freddie Mercury's masterpiece was remastered and released in 2011, upgraded for streaming, with more nuanced instrument sounds and better clarity. If you want to test the full range of your new headphones, this is the song to go with.

From its mellow beginnings to Mercury's high notes during the operatic section and, finally, May's solo as the song switches lanes into rock-and-roll territory, this track will help you test the full range of your headphones.

High-end headsets might be able to pick up those tiny mistakes that were left in intentionally when the song was first recorded, including the slightly out-of-tune piano!

2. Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes

Renowned for its incredible bass riff, Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes is arguably the most recognizable song to have released in the early 2000s.

The deep bassline poses a great test for headphones, while the mix of different instruments, coupled with the bassline consistently playing in the background, will help you test your new headphones' dynamic response.

3. Feels Like We Only Go Backwards by Tame Impala

This is a great song to test your new headphones' overall sound field. The arrangement lets you hear from all directions, and good headphones should be able to replicate this perfectly.

From the slight variations of the bass line to the electric organ's nuance, Feels Like We Only Go Backwards is a great track that you can use to gauge the overall clarity and response of your new headphones.

The song may sound "dirty" with layers mixing improperly, especially as it nears the end, on low-quality headphones. However, on high-end cans, the track is more nuanced, clear, and just sounds so much better.

4. Heroes (2017 Remaster) by David Bowie

The 12 Best Tracks to Test Headphones With (2)

Heroes is a phenomenal song by David Bowie that is great for testing your new pair of cans. If you want the best quality headphones that don't cost a fortune, it's important to test them properly.

(Video) ULTIMATE HEADPHONE TEST !!! (Wear Headphone)

Ideally, you'd want to make sure that they can handle changes in musical intensity seamlessly. Heroes is a great track to test this. From the faint sounds of the lead guitar to the piano keys, topped with the consistent pitch variation in Bowie's voice, this is a fantastic track to put your new headphones through the paces.

By the end of the song, you should also be able to hear the unique juddering effect that the song's renowned for!

5. Lemon by U2

U2 is one of the greatest bands of all time, and Lemon is easily one of their best songs. It showcases Bono's full range of vocal prowess, and is beautifully supplemented by the Edge's guitar.

The robust bass that underpins the song is a great way to test out how your new cans are performing, and the heavily processed music makes it a fantastic track to test your new headphones with.

6. No Time for Caution by Hans Zimmer

No Time for Caution may seem like a simple instrumental on the surface, but there's a lot to notice, if you listen closely. Hans Zimmer's masterpiece continues to add on instruments as it grows in intensity until the hairs on the back of your neck begin to stand.

The song starts slow, with a simple drum beat, until the air's suddenly punctuated with an organ. Violins soon join in, and before long, you'll find it difficult to make out different instruments as the entire orchestra kicks into gear.

It's a phenomenal track to test headphones, as it'll help you gauge the midrange response and the bass levels of your new cans.

7. The Chain (2004 Remaster) by Fleetwood Mac

Fleetwood Mac's The Chain is widely regarded as one of the best songs they ever recorded. From its majestic guitar chorus to the deep bass line and the accompanying drums, The Chain is a great track to test the versatility of your new headphones.

(Video) Headphone / IEM 10 Hour Burn in Track with Rest - 20 to 100 Hz Bass Sweep

Keep an ear open for the harmonies in the background and the powerful vocals, as well as the fantastic guitar solo. At its peak, Fleetwood Mac was the epitome of "soft rock" in the 70's, and the remastered version is a great track to test your new headphones with.

If you have headphones with high impedance, you'll be able to hear all the instruments with pristine clarity. But, to really make the best of such headphones, you also need a high-impedance output port.

8. Now We Are Free by Hans Zimmer

Lisa Gerrard, Klaus Badelt, and Hans Zimmer's masterpiece from Gladiator is a great track for testing your headphones. The haunting vocals of Gerrard's voice, coupled with the clear dynamic detail and the faint piano in the background will really strain your headphones.

The song suddenly changes midway, as new percussive instruments fill the soundstage, which will help you gauge your headphones' overall dynamics and ability to handle changes in musical intensity.

9. Enjoy the Silence by Depeche Mode

Enjoy the Silence is easily one of the best tracks ever produced by Depeche Mode. From its disco undertones to its synth-pop vibe, the song perfectly highlights the power of David Gahan's vocals and the accompanying musical prowess of the rest of the band.

From Gore's rich, low voice to the deep reverb and the over-reliance on electronic effects, Enjoy the Silence is a fantastic track that you can use to gauge whether your new headphones are able to catch all the sounds in the background or not.

Played through a good pair of headphones, it's going to sound great. If you don't hear the music right, you might want to try a few tips to improve the sound quality of your headphones.

(Video) New Speaker/Headphone Burn In Track. 20Hz-20KHz sweeps, many waveshapes

10. Paper Trails by DARKSIDE

If you want a track with a really moving bassline, check out Paper Trails by DARKSIDE. The vocals also fall towards the deep end of the frequency range, so you can better gauge whether your headphones offer clear bass or not.

Played through a good pair of headphones, it's going to sound great. If you don't hear the music right, you might want to try a few tips to improve the sound quality of your headphones.

11. Rainbow In The Dark by Dio

If you're a fan of rock and roll or even heavy metal, Rainbow In The Dark by Dio is a great track to test your new headphones with. Ronnie's high-pitched vocals, coupled with the sharp distortion of the electric guitar and that iconic riff will really push any pair of headphones to their limits.

The chorus is also punctuated with a gorgeous keyboard riff until you hear just the drums before it all boils down to an unbelievable solo by Vivian Campbell. Now, you'll be hearing the riff, the drums, and that iconic solo altogether.

Good headphones are able to present the sounds with great clarity, especially the part with the pinch harmonics.

12. Shine On You Crazy Diamond (All Parts) by Pink Floyd

Shine On You Crazy Diamond is arguably one of the best tracks to test your new headphones, simply because it covers everything you need across nine parts.

From a dynamic soundstage to varying instruments to unbelievable guitar sounds and even a trumpet, nothing comes close to this one if you want variety. The "twang" of Gilmour's Fender to Wright's keyboard riffs, the varying frequencies will pose a great test for your headphones.

The later parts really elevate the song, as it all boils down into a crescendo of different instruments being played in true musical harmony. If you want to test the dynamic grip of your headphones and how well they can handle sudden frequency changes, try this.

Find the Right Headphones for You

Modern headphones often require users to strike a balance between sound and function. These tracks will help you decide which headphones offer the right balance for you. You can check the tracks out on your new headphones using the links above, or our dedicated headphone checking playlist below.

(Video) Headphone Burn-In Noise and Tones for 12 Hours

In addition to your potential headphones' sound quality, you might also want to look at other features, such as connectivity, noise cancellation, battery capabilities, or if it's solar-powered.


The 12 Best Tracks to Test Headphones With? ›

It is recommended to play for at least 40-50 hours. Burn-in gurus usually play pure tones like sin wave, sweeps, pink noise, and or AM/FM static. You can layer them with more complex tones like classical music to give the headphones a more robust workout.

What is the best music to burn in headphones? ›

It is recommended to play for at least 40-50 hours. Burn-in gurus usually play pure tones like sin wave, sweeps, pink noise, and or AM/FM static. You can layer them with more complex tones like classical music to give the headphones a more robust workout.

How can I test the quality of my headphones? ›

To judge the sound quality of the headphones/earphones, you need first to play low-frequency sound to ensure it is perfectly audible. For that, play a song with different pitches. Listen to low sounds from bass guitars/baritone vocals. You must be able to listen to its sound deep, crisp, and rich.

What song does dankpods use to test headphones? ›

Walk Through The Park , the jazz tune he uses to demonstrate audio equipment. And speaking of, "Scarlet Fire" by Otis MacDonald , the song he plays when trying to blow up crappy earbuds.

What is 8D audio supposed to do? ›

8D music is essentially a subcategory of music that 'tricks' your brain into thinking you're in a bigger space. Artists and producers manipulate the stereo sections of a track, making you feel like the sounds are coming from different directions. Some say it gives you the impression of listening to live music.

What's a good song to test a stereo? ›

Top 12 Tracks to Use For Testing Speakers
  • #1: Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen. ...
  • #2: Turn Your Lights Down Low by Bob Marley and The Wailers. ...
  • #3: Spoon by Can. ...
  • #4: Lonesome Lover by Max Roach. ...
  • #5: Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin. ...
  • #6: Uh Uh by Thundercat. ...
  • #7: The National Anthem by Radiohead. ...
  • #8: Rosanna by Toto.
Oct 5, 2022

Why is my headphone quality so bad? ›

Wired or wireless connection issues

For wired headphones, muffled audio can be caused by a loose connection to the audio source. If the plug of your headphones isn't properly plugged in the audio port, sound quality will be inconsistent. What is this? For Bluetooth headphones, it can be caused by mismatched codecs.

What sound should my headphones be on? ›

How Loud and How Long Should You Wear Your Headphones? Experts recommend keeping sound levels at somewhere between 60 and 85 decibels to minimize the damage your ears are exposed to. If you are listening to music at around 100 decibels, restrict your usage to within 15 mins.

Why do my headphones sound blurry? ›

One of the most common causes of muffled sound in wireless headphones is that the audio settings on your device are not configured properly. For example, if the volume on your device is set too low or if the equalizer settings are not optimized for your headphones, it can cause the sound to be muffled.

What is the best Pink Floyd song to test headphones? ›

  • Shine On You Crazy Diamond Pts 1-5 (Wish You Were Here, 1975) ...
  • Another Brick In The Wall Part 2 (The Wall, 1979) ...
  • Money (Dark Side Of The Moon,1973) ...
  • The Great Gig In The Sky (Dark Side Of The Moon, 1973) ...
  • Interstellar Overdrive (Piper At The Gates Of Dawn, 1967) ...
  • Comfortably Numb (The Wall,1979)
Mar 26, 2023

What headphones do CDL pros use? ›

Play like a Pro! The ASTRO A40 TR is the premier gaming headset for professional gamers, including esports athletes, content creators live steamers and is officially licensed by the Call of Duty League. It was developed with esports athletes to meet their rigorous standards for audio fidelity, comfort, and durability.

What are the best songs to listen to with headphones? ›

Songs To Test Headphones With
  • Landslide. Fleetwood Mac.
  • A Horse with No Name. America, George Martin.
  • Them Changes. Thundercat.
  • Feels Like We Only Go Backwards. Tame Impala.
  • Heroes - 2017 Remaster. David Bowie.
  • Enjoy the Silence. Depeche Mode, Daniel Miller, Phil Legg.
  • Smalltown Boy. Bronski Beat.
  • Into the Mystic - 2013 Remaster.

What do musicians listen to in their headphones? ›

Primarily, artists hear themselves in their earpieces. However, they also hear the other players on stage. Many artists use backing tracks of synthesized instruments and sounds that are easily made in a studio.

What are the best headphones in the world? ›

The 10 Best Headphone And Earbud Brands - Spring 2023 Reviews
  • Bose. Bose QuietComfort Earbuds II Truly Wireless. ...
  • Sony. Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless. ...
  • Apple. Apple AirPods Pro (2nd generation) Truly Wireless. ...
  • Sennheiser. Sennheiser HD 800 S. ...
  • Audio-Technica. Audio-Technica ATH-M50x. ...
  • JBL. JBL Live Pro 2 TWS True Wireless. ...
  • Beats. ...
  • Jabra.
Apr 6, 2023

Which is better 8D or 16d? ›

There is no difference. If it comes out of two speakers (i.e. headphones) then it's stereo.

Is 8D music good for ADHD? ›

Interestingly, other types of music for ADHD concentration that might help include 8D music or binaural beats. When listening to 8D music, sounds seem to float around you making it feel like you are immersed in the music. The caveat is — you must listen to 8D with headphones on for it to have this effect.

Why do ADHD like 8D music? ›

8D audio, or binaural audio, can create an immersive experience that can improve mood and reduce anxiety. This is because 8D audio stimulates the brain in a more natural way than traditional audio. For people with ADHD and neurodivergent people, this immersive experience can be calming and help to focus the mind.

What is highest audio quality song? ›

HiFi audio is a superior sound but is still limited in its resolution—44.1 kHz /16 bit. TIDAL has partnered with MQA to deliver something substantially better: an authenticated and unbroken version (typically 96 kHz / 24 bit) with the highest possible resolution—as flawless as it sounded in the mastering suite.

Which audio song quality is best? ›

A lossless audio file format is the best format for sound quality. These include FLAC, WAV, or AIFF. These types of files are considered “hi-res” because they are better or equal to CD-quality.

What type of music is best for test taking? ›

Classical: The best music for concentration

As far as concentration goes, science dictates that classical music is the best for aiding studying.

What makes a headphone audiophile? ›

Audiophile headphones are designed for the audio fan who values sound quality above features like Bluetooth and noise cancelling. We define “everyday” audiophile headphones as pairs that sound great but are priced under $1,000 and do not need a headphone amp.

Why do cheap headphones sound so good? ›

Cheaper headphones can illude that they are better than the expensive ones, but actually, they are not. The cheap headphones boost some of the frequencies that pass through them, like the treble and the base; this can give the listener that the sound is better than the one produced in the expensive headphones.

Why do speakers sound better than headphones? ›

In addition, stereo speakers are simply able to produce a wider range of frequencies than headphones can. Headphones can give you solid bass, but not in the way that a tower speaker's woofer can. At a certain point, deep bass simply requires a large driver, and headphones simply can't do that.

How long should you wear headphones a day? ›

“As a rule of thumb, you should only use MP3 devices at levels up to 60% of maximum volume for a total of 60 minutes a day,” says Dr. Foy. “The louder the volume, the shorter your duration should be. At maximum volume, you should listen for only about five minutes a day.”

What frequency is best for headphones? ›

20 to 20,000 Hz is generally accepted as the audible frequency range, this is the standard for most headphones. Some headphones offer wider ranges (for example, 5 to 33,000 Hz), but better frequency response does not always mean better sound quality.

How loud is 70 decibels music? ›

70 decibels is as loud as a washing machine or a dishwasher. It is a moderate noise level. 70 dB noise is not considered harmful to human hearing.

How can I increase the clarity of my headphones? ›

8 Tips to Get the Best Sound Quality Out of Your Headphones
  1. Go to a Quiet Room. ...
  2. Use the Right Earpads or Eartips. ...
  3. Adjust Your EQ Settings. ...
  4. Switch to Tidal for Music Streaming. ...
  5. Use an External DAC. ...
  6. Switch Your Bluetooth Codec. ...
  7. Clean the Headphone Jack. ...
  8. Turn on ANC on Wireless Headphones.
Apr 6, 2023

What song David Gilmour won t play? ›

A replica of Pink Floyd's famous show, where the group performed a truly awe-inspiring version of 'Echoes', the stage was seemingly set for the song to be wheeled out for the audience. However, Gilmour was forthright in his reason for the track's exclusion: “Yes, it would be lovely to play 'Echoes' here.

Why does Pink Floyd sound so good? ›

Pink Floyd has always been lauded for its ability to be profound yet irreverent with its wording and imagery. Nowhere does it hit home as much as with the band's lyrics. A lot of the band's lyrics read out like poetic passages. And the messages they convey are some of the most relatable and relevant experiences.

Should I listen to pink noise with headphones? ›

The “burn-in” myth

The popular belief that you need to “burn-in” a set of headphones with hours of loud sample sounds like pink noise before they sound the best is just that: a myth. The myth states that the component that needs breaking in is the headphone's speaker drivers.

What is dank real name? ›

He is played by Saturday Night Live's Chris Redd.

Why does DankPods use an iPad? ›

The iPad is an iPad 4 that DankPods uses as a workbench. He uses it due to the case being grippy while handling slippery nuggets.

What headphones does Tiger Woods use? ›

But the infamous golfer does have some good news today, announcing a new partnership with Sol Republic headphones to go with his newly-installed pearly whites.

Why do pros wear 2 headsets? ›

Professional players sometimes wear two headsets in LAN tournaments to showcase a product from their sponsor and utilize the outer headphones provided by the organizers to minimize external sounds. In addition, white noise is also played in the headphones to improve noise canceling.

Why do cod players wear 2 headphones? ›

Sometimes they're even wearing a second headset around their neck, but why is that? The explanation is fairly simple: the earbuds are playing the actual ingame sounds, while the headphones/headset that they're wearing is a noise-reducing pair which is usually also transmitting white noise.

What is the best song to test spatial audio? ›

  • Flight from the City by Jóhann Jóhansson (2016) ...
  • Blessings (feat. ...
  • Ocean Eyes by Billie Eilish (2017) ...
  • Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds by The Beatles (1967) ...
  • Clash by Dave and Stormzy (2021) ...
  • Die Walküre, Act III Ride of the Walkyries by Wagner (1851) ...
  • You Ain't the Problem by Michael Kiwanuka (2019)
Mar 30, 2023

How do I test my Apple earphones? ›

Go to Settings > Control Center, then add Hearing. Connect your headphones, then play audio. The audio level (in decibels) of your headphones is displayed on the Headphone Level meter.

How can I hear my own voice on my earphones? ›

First, check the volume control on your headset. If it's turned down too low, you may not be able to hear yourself properly. Second, try moving the microphone closer to your mouth. This will help ensure that your voice is being picked up by the mic.

What songs support Spatial Audio? ›

Spatial Audio - The 3D Classical Collection
  • Strauss, Richard: Also sprach Zarathustra, Op. ...
  • Verdi: Messa da Requiem: Dies Irae. ...
  • Berlioz: La damnation de Faust, Op. ...
  • Brahms: Symphony No. ...
  • Barber: Adagio for Strings, Op. ...
  • Fauré: Pavane, Op. ...
  • Mendelssohn: A Midsummer Night's Dream, Op.

What are Spatial Audio tracks? ›

Spatial Audio is Apple's own immersive sound technology that uses the various sensors (specifically the accelerometers and gyroscopes) in Apple's AirPods Pro (first- and second-generation) or AirPods Max to track the listener's head movements.

Do pros have Spatial Audio? ›

Yes. You can listen to Dolby Atmos music in Spatial Audio with dynamic head tracking on AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, and Beats Fit Pro with a compatible iPhone, iPad, or Mac.

What is the best sound signature for headphones? ›

Due to their accurate sound reproduction, flat sound signature headphones are preferred by Music professionals, Sound Engineers and used in professional studios for mixing and mastering music tracks and are also loved by audiophiles for immersive listening sessions.

Is there fake Apple AirPods? ›

The charging port is lined with metal. Authentic AirPods are lined thinly, while the fake ones would have slightly thicker ones. Other examples of clear fakes are anything that doesn't have a lightning port or AirPods Pro cases that don't work with Apple-approved wireless chargers.

How loud is too loud for headphones? ›

How Loud and How Long Should You Wear Your Headphones? Experts recommend keeping sound levels at somewhere between 60 and 85 decibels to minimize the damage your ears are exposed to. If you are listening to music at around 100 decibels, restrict your usage to within 15 mins.

How much is 85 decibels on iPhone? ›

85 dB: Around 1 hour and 45 minutes a day. 90 dB: Around 30 minutes a day.

How can I test my mic and hear myself? ›

To test a microphone that has already been installed:
  1. Make sure your microphone is connected to your PC.
  2. Select Start > Settings > System > Sound.
  3. In Sound settings, go to Input and under Test your microphone, look for the blue bar that rises and falls as you speak into your microphone.

Do all headphones leak sound? ›

All headphones usually leak sound a bit. When you listen to music at low volume, you probably won't notice it at all. However, louder music and certain designs of headphones can leak so much audio that the person next to you might be treated to a full (and unwanted) concert.


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