What to Look For in Headphones for Learning and Working From Home

At AVID, we believe every form of learning requires clear communication to ensure student and educator success. With this in mind, we continue to develop headphones and headsets that feature important elements like noise-canceling microphones and noise-reducing ear cups to help maintain focus and promote collaboration.

While engaging remotely- students, educators and professionals are finding headphones and headsets to be a necessity as they engage in virtual workspaces and online learning environments on a daily basis.

These are some essential qualities to look for in headphones or headsets for your virtual needs and what we keep in mind when designing them:

Noise-canceling or omnidirectional boom microphone helps with clear communication. We say boom microphone in particular as this style is easy to adjust to each wearer and better pinpoints sound so background noise doesn’t interfere while you’re trying to communicate. An in-line microphone also works, however this type of mic has a tendency to rub against your shirt causing unneeded noise and is not ideal for testing.

Noise-reducing ear cups help block out surrounding noises and distractions. This makes it easier to focus and be more immersed in the virtual environment. This is particularly important if there are many people in a household or if you live in a noisy area.

A good fit and durable design are vital for long-term use and to withstand daily wear and tear. When wearing your headphones, ear cups shouldn’t pinch or feel too tight or on the same token, too loose. Look for styles with adjustable headbands or that are made for certain age groups, especially for younger children.

Comfort is part of the “good fit” we explained above. Features we find to be important to ensure you’ll feel comfortable wearing your headphones for hours on end are well cushioned ear cups and lightweight frame.

Easy to clean is crucial for shared headphones and in general. To avoid spreading germs and bacteria, it’s always a good idea to thoroughly clean your headphones with an anti-bacterial wipe after each usage. We find that ear cups made with leatherette material or similar are the easiest to clean.

A long, chew-resistant cord allows for a wide range of movement so you’re not hovering over your computer or so you may easily adjust your position without pulling the cord out of the device. A chew-resistant braided nylon cord is an important quality as chewing is a habit very common among younger headphone users.

The right connection or an adapter that is compatible with your primary device. AS there are a variety of connection types available for headphones, always double check that the model you choose has the correct type for your needs before you purchase. If not you may be able to find an affordable adapter that allows you to use your headphones with more than one device. Check out some AVID options here.

A pin protector is essential to protect devices and audio equipment. We cannot stress this one enough! Sometimes we forget we are wearing earbuds or headphones and get up from where we are sitting. If we’re lucky, only the earbuds get wrenched from our ears. However, if we’re not so lucky, the pin breaks off in the device or the laptop crashes to the floor. Repairs or replacement of pricey devices is never in the budget. Check out the award-winning AVID Fishbone, an in-line cord adapter that allows the pin to disengage smoothly if pulled from the jack. This little accessory is affordable and saves you from costly mistakes.

Online learning and working from home has been a new experience for many of us. All of us at AVID are here to support you with audio solutions based in quality, innovation and value that deliver an enhanced and fulfilling experience, even in a virtual environment.

Learn more about our recommended headphones for distance learning here or read about how we have already connected over two million students this year as we remain committed to education and student success here.

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Elizabeth Woodard

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