Retro headphones have that old school look that makes you feel like breaking out the old 8 track player and listening to hits from the 70s. You don’t need to order an old used pair that survived the bell bottom days off of eBay. There are plenty of manufacturers that are making retro style headphones today. You can buy a brand new pair that looks and feels like the good old days, but probably sounds much better. In fact, the technology in some of the retro-looking headphones today far surpasses anything they had back when these styles were the standard in the industry.
Take a look at this list of the top five retro headphones on the market based on style and sound quality.
Koss Pro-4AA Studio Quality Headphones
These are an updated version of a model by the same name that Koss made in the 70s. They have a big bulky design that lets you know they are super loud just by looking at them. Their frequency response is 10-25,000 Hz. Their 10-foot cord ends in a .25-inch plug. If you ever want to use them for your tablet or phone, you’ll need to pick up an adapter. They include an attached mount in case you want to set up a microphone.
The Koss Pro-4AA’s closed-ear design helps achieve a more isolated listening experience, limiting outside interference and sparing others the sound of the 70s blaring from your headphones. They have very good tonal quality and range. The bass is not overwhelming. They’re a bit heavy and not incredibly comfortable, but they do produce very high quality sound. They currently go for around $55 online.Check Current Price on Amazon
I-MEGO Headphones, Throne Gold, Leather Headband and Soft Pouch
The I-MEGO Throne Gold retro style headphones are as classy as they are clear in sound. The headband is coated with genuine leather and decorative stitching. Although the gold grill on the outside appears to be metal, it isn’t, but most people won’t be able to tell. They look awesome. People will definitely notice and ask about them because their design is unique. It looks like you’re wearing two old style microphones on the sides of your head.
The I-MEGO Throne Gold headphones have very deep, powerful bass and overall crisp sound. The purple version is designed to amplify acoustics, so it has more accented mids rather than accented lows like the gold model. These headphones also feature an in-line microphone for making calls and controlling music. You can buy them for roughly $100 online.Check Current Price on Amazon
Panasonic Retro Over-the-Ear Stereo Monitor Headphones RP-HTX7-C1 (Cream) Dynamic Accurate Sound, Lightweight and Comfortable
These headphones are the epitome of retro. They look like they came straight out of a box in the attic. The over-ear design contains sound well and minimizes outside noise. Their 40mm neodymium drivers produce sound that is loud enough to block out anything anyway. At just 5.4 ounces, they’re light and comfortable enough for you to forget you’re even wearing them. They have a real leather headband and a thin, one-sided cord ending in a 3.5 mm plug. They can easily plug into any phone, tablet or computer.
The Panasonic RP-HTX7 delivers well-accented mids and highs, with fairly good bass. They aren’t designed for bass-heavy tunes though. Think more like jazz or soft rock if you’re wondering where these really shine. They come in eight different colors, but they are not all the same price. The cream version costs around $65.Check Current Price on Amazon
August EP634 – Bluetooth Wireless Stereo Headphones
These on-ear, cordless headphones come with a detachable cord that ends in a standard 3.5mm plug. They’ll fit in any standard mobile device. They come with a rechargeable lithium ion battery and a built-in microphone. If the battery dies, you can still use them with the detachable cord. They’re compatible with pretty much any device that supports Bluetooth. They have a simplistic design that comes in black, gray or red.
The August EP634 include call and music controls built into the side. As you can tell by the picture, they’re rather small, so if you have a larger than average head, they might be a bit uncomfortable. The sound quality is fairly well balanced, but nothing too impressive overall. They currently cost just under $25.Check Current Price on Amazon
iFrogz EarPollution Throwbax II Headphones, Taupe
As an even more budget option than the August EP634, the iFrogz EarPollution Throwbax II feature 40mm drivers, a foldable design for easier carrying and storing, and a convenient tangle-free flat cord. They have a frequency response of 20 Hz to 20 kHz, and 32 ohms impedance. Sound quality on the iFrogz is quite good for the price, but don’t expect them to replace a $200 pair of Sennheisers. They offer very good value for something in the $15 range though.Check Current Price on Amazon