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Best Shure Headphones - 2018
Reviews

We've currently reviewed 4 Shure headphones. They make mid to high-end headphones with a focus on sound quality and accurate audio reproduction. 

Compared to other brands

  • Closed-back Critical Listening Headphones.  Shure makes over-ear and on-ear headphones specifically made for critical listening, recording, and professionals. They do not have many features but focus primarily on good audio reproduction. They have some open-back models too but the majority of their lineup are closed, which makes them a good brand for studio use.
  • High-end In-ear Designs. Shure has well-made in-ear models with interchangeable cables and see-through designs that look great and feel premium. They might not sound as good as comparable headphones in the same price range, but in terms of build quality, Shure makes some of the most durable and comfortable in-ear designs.
  • Headphone Variety. Shure does not have as many headphone types and options as some of the other competing brands in audio like Sennheiser or Audio-Technica. Shure only offers a couple of in-ears, some over-ear models for DJs and some wired on-ears for casual use. They have no noise canceling models for commuters, no wireless on-ears for portability or sports and nothing for gaming. 
  • Slightly Expensive. Shure has some affordable headphones, especially given their audio quality. However, since they have no active features and they're not particularly versatile, when compared to other brands like Plantronics, Shure's simple and straightforward headphones feel slightly overpriced for what they do.

Overall, Shure makes headphones for critical listeners and professionals. They have a couple of models specifically for DJs, recording, and mastering, which makes them a good brand if you're looking for new headphones to use in your studio. Unfortunately, they do not have a lot of headphone variety. They have a couple of well-made in-ears, a few on-ears, and mostly closed back over-ears which do not have any active features. If you're looking for feature-packed, noise-canceling headphones with a wireless design that's great for everyday use, then Shure will not be the best brand for you.

Best Shure Headphones

Shure has a simple naming strategy that splits their headphones into two main groups: in-ears/earbuds and on-ears/over-ears.

  • SRH = The main lineup of the Shure brand that covers most of their over-ear and on-ear models. Typically, the higher the number after the SRH the more premium the model. They also have some DJ centric variations with more flexible hinges.
  • SE =  The in-ear lineup of the Shure brand. They also have some new wireless in-ear variations of some of their cheaper in-ears, and a Bluetooth enabled cable that's sold separately to use with the higher-end models.

Best Shure Headphones for Critical Listening

Usage Ratings - Version 1.2

Test Benches: test

  • 1.2: Winter 2018
  • 1.1: Summer 2017
  • 1.0: Winter 2017
  • 0.9: Winter 2016
6.3
Mixed Usage
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:
7.7
Critical Listening
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:
5.5
Commute/Travel
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:
5.8
Sports/Fitness
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:
6.1
Office
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:
6.1
Home Theater
Score components:
5.8
Gaming
Score components:
Type : Over-ear
Enclosure : Closed-Back
Wireless : No
Noise-Cancelling : No
Mic : No
Transducer : Dynamic

The best Shure headphones that we've tested so far are the SRH 440. They have a well-balanced sound that's suitable for critical listening and a sturdy design, that although a little plasticky, feels durable enough to last a while. They're also quite comfortable and relatively lightweight. Unfortunately, they're fairly simple headphones that have no audio controls for your mobile devices or any fancy features to make them more convenient or versatile in all environments. They're a solid recommendation if you're looking for a straightforward pair of closed-back critical listening headphones but they won't be ideal for other use cases.

See our review

Conclusion

Shure is a relatively well-known brand in audio that makes high-quality in-ears and critical listening headphones for professionals, mastering, and mixing. They do not have the most diverse lineup of headphones and lack a few active features so they won't be the best brand if you're looking for unique and versatile headphones with a long list of features. However, if you need a sturdy and good-sounding pair of over-ears for your studio or a comfortable and well-made set of in-ears that you can have on you at all times, then Shure is a great option.

Discover our recommendations for the best over-ear headphones.

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