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  1. Top
  2. Test Results
  3. When it matters
  4. Best Headphones
  5. Our tests
  6. Q&A
Updated

Bass Frequency Response on Headphones

What it is: Frequency Response from 20Hz-250Hz
When it matters: When the material is heavy on bass frequencies, such as those of kick drums and bass guitar.
Score components:

Bass describes the low-end spectrum of frequency response and ranges from 20Hz to 250HZ.  

It is the deep and heavy tones in your music, like low rumbles, kick drums and bass instruments. Depending on your listening taste, well-balanced bass is essential for optimal audio reproduction.

For bass performance, we measure the low-bass, mid, and high-bass frequency response, then use these values to test for the standard error of the bass reproduction.

Test results

When it matters

Some music genres, such as EDM, hip-hop, rock, dubstep, etc., are arranged to be bass-heavy. Headphones with great bass performance reproduce the bass spectrum of a track as it was arranged.

An over-hyped bass profile will cause the bass in some tracks to overpower the mids and highs, which might not suit everyone's listening taste. Inversely, an under-hyped bass profile will cause bass in some tracks to sound hollow and feel lacking, especially if the tracks didn't have much bass to begin with.

However, personal taste is important when making a selection, as different bass profiles suit different listeners. Also, the importance of bass depends on listening activity. Movies, for example, require more bass than podcasts or audiobooks.

Best Bass Headphones

Best For Accurate Bass

Usage Ratings
7.4Mixed Usage
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What it is This is the combination of the different use cases to evaluate how versatile the headphones are. Therefore an everyday headphone should be well-rounded enough to adapt to most situations and environments without significant losses in sound quality, design ergonomics or isolation.
Score components:
7.3Critical Listening
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What it is The level of audio fidelity a headphone can reproduce. Therefore a balanced and true representation of bass, mids, treble, soundstage and imaging, as well as a comfortable listening experience, is essential for critical listening.
Score components:
7.5Commute/Travel
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What it is How well the headphones handle the loud environments involved in commuting or traveling. Therefore your listening experience should be comfortable, hassle-free and as isolated from noise as possible.
Score components:
7.2Sports/Fitness
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What it is How well-adapted the headphones are, to use while doing sports or strenuous exercise. Therefore the headphones should not be too cumbersome and deliver a stable and comfortable listening experience.
Score components:
7.6Office
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What it is How well the headphones can deliver a comfortable and isolated listening experience in an office-like environment. They should not leak much and should block the noise of a busy office.
Score components:

The JBL Everest Elite 700 have an excellent Bass Range performance. The response is basically flat and virtually flawless, which gives them one of the most accurate representations of bass with respect to our target curve. This means the bass won't be overpowered or lacking and should be great with most tracks. The only remarks are the slight mismatch between L/R drivers in low-bass, which won't be audible.

See our review

Best for Heavy Bass

Usage Ratings
7.5Mixed Usage
Show Help
What it is This is the combination of the different use cases to evaluate how versatile the headphones are. Therefore an everyday headphone should be well-rounded enough to adapt to most situations and environments without significant losses in sound quality, design ergonomics or isolation.
Score components:
7.6Critical Listening
Show Help
What it is The level of audio fidelity a headphone can reproduce. Therefore a balanced and true representation of bass, mids, treble, soundstage and imaging, as well as a comfortable listening experience, is essential for critical listening.
Score components:
7.5Commute/Travel
Show Help
What it is How well the headphones handle the loud environments involved in commuting or traveling. Therefore your listening experience should be comfortable, hassle-free and as isolated from noise as possible.
Score components:
7.2Sports/Fitness
Show Help
What it is How well-adapted the headphones are, to use while doing sports or strenuous exercise. Therefore the headphones should not be too cumbersome and deliver a stable and comfortable listening experience.
Score components:
7.8Office
Show Help
What it is How well the headphones can deliver a comfortable and isolated listening experience in an office-like environment. They should not leak much and should block the noise of a busy office.
Score components:

The Plantronics BackBeat Pro 2 have a good bass that extended down to 10Hz. So if you want a headphone that will kick and rumble with your bass-heavy tracks, then the Backbeat Pro 2 are a good option. They sound exciting and they perform well enough in the midrange to not completely drown the instruments and vocals. However, low-bass is significantly overemphasized and could sound a bit boomy if the source material is already bass-heavy.

See our review

Our tests

Low-Frequency Extension

What it is: The lowest frequency at which the frequency response reaches -3dB of the target response.
When it matters: Shows how extended the bass is.
Good value: <40Hz
Noticeable difference: 5Hz

[Coming soon]


Bass Std. Err.

What it is: The amount of deviation (weighted standard error) in bass frequency response (20Hz-250Hz) as compared to a target response that would sound perfectly balanced to most people.
When it matters: When a balanced and neutral (reference) bass performance is desired.
Good value: <4dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB

[Coming soon]


Low-Bass

What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 20Hz-60Hz.
When it matters: Kick drums and low frequency effects get their 'thump' from this range. Mostly felt than heard.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB

[Coming soon]


Bass

What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 60Hz-120Hz.
When it matters: Melodic bass instruments have most of their fundamental frequencies in this range. This is where the 'body' and 'punch' of the bass sits.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB

[Coming soon]


High-Bass

What it is: The average amount of over/under-emphasis in frequency response from 120Hz-250Hz.
When it matters: Most instruments get their warmth and full-ness from this range. When over-emphasized, mixes tend to get muddy and boomy.
Good value: +/-3dB
Noticeable difference: 0.1dB

[Coming soon]

 

 

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