When it comes to buying new speakers or headphones, you can discuss things like the signal-to-noise ratio, response bandwidth, nominal output power and much more.
These specs are fine, but how do you really know if headphones are good?
You need to find the best songs for testing your headphones.
Remember to listen to the music you like. It is easiest to feel the differences between headphones with songs that you listen to often.
We have a short playlist that we use to test out headphones, made up of tracks we love and could listen to all day.
But before we show you our go-to songs to test the performance of speaker/headphones, here is our list of best headphones in 2019.
BEST HEADPHONES (2020)
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How do you decide that the speakers you are buying are good ones? Test it with proper music. We found songs that will test the limits of your brand new speakers.
The most important advice we can give you if you are looking for the best songs to test headphones is:
Listen to what you like and also what you know really well.
Here is our selection of songs you should use to test your new headphones.
Best Songs For Testing Speakers And Headphones
Welcome To The Jungle – Guns N´ Roses
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: This is simply Axl´s voice. The Guns N’ Roses vocalist has sung notes that span nearly six octaves, from F1 (There Was a Time), in the second-lowest octave in scientific pitch notation, to B flat 6 (Ain’t it Fun), five octaves above it. The screeching screaming in this track will make sure your tweeters are making what they are supposed to.
Unfinished Sympathy – Massive Attack
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: Unfinished Sympathy was released as the second single from Blue Lines and was acclaimed by critics for its distinctive production and Nelson’s vocals. This song is the test for subwoofers. This is a great song to test headphone’s bass and clarity.
Caribbean Blue – Enya
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: Like or not Enya but this particular song is awesome. Just listening. If the headphones or speakers you are testing don´t surround you with ethereal layers of sound, you need to look for another type.
Brass Monkey – Beastie Boys
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: Bass, bass and again bass. Wait 10 seconds after the song starts and then turn up the volume. The big booming bass can easily blow a lesser speaker part.
All Along The Watchtower – The Jimi Hendrix Experience
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: From the beginning, with unique short guitar riffs, to the final moments, this song is constantly testing the limits of low and high frequencies and the right to left balance.
Beverly Hills Cop Theme Song – Harold Faltermeyer
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: The original piece is the one, you need for testing your chosen headphones. Get the full mix of energy and silence. And make sure you are able to hear the sharp clicking sound in the background.
Baba O’Riley – The Who
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: The classic intro of this track moves from left to right in a bewildering way. The intro gains piano chords, crashing drums, rhythmic guitar, and Roger Daltrey´s voice.
Bohemian Rhapsody – Queen
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: Bohemian Rhapsody is a masterpiece. A cappella singing, soft piano music, face-melting guitar riffs, and booming bass. There are over 180 separate overdubs in this legendary song. The constant changes to the decibel level and the tempo, as continual back and forth between the left and right speaker outputs – all that makes this amazing song perfect for testing.
Insane in the Membrane – Cypress Hill
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: The beat is soo catchy. You probably should listen to this song several times in a row as a part of a bass test for your headphones or speakers.
Silent Lucidity – Queensryche
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: This classic rock track has a nice variety of elements that will test speakers. If your device is working fine, you should hear nice and crisp vocals at the beginning, then it continue with a crisp guitar sound and around the 2:00 minute, you should see a clear chorus of voices. This rock song is great for testing all levels of your new speakers.
Every Rose Has Its Thorn – Poison
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: This semi-acoustical rock song has a clear and crisp Brett Micheals voice, great sounding guitar and smooth but not overpowering bass guitar sound.
The National Anthem – Radiohead
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: If you have a better sound system, you should be able to pick out the fainter layers of theremin-like sounds around Yorke’s voice. With the use of the worse audio system, this track sounds flat or distorted. The National Anthem by Radiohead is awesome for testing the overall balance of speakers.
The Chain – Fleetwood Mac
Why It Works for a Speaker Test: Are you looking for a song for identifying separation and overall fidelity? The first part of The Chain with the steel guitar and vocals is great for these purposes. The bass solo of this classic track is also a nice show of how controlled the subwoofer is, and the upcoming guitar solo will be a real test for distortion.
BONUS: We have read that people use Rage Against the Machine’s first album to test amplifiers and speakers. Specifically, Take the Power Back. It sounds incredible on both speakers and headphones, and if you’re into rock music this is what we would recommend.
Now, you have a list of tracks to a proper test.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Speakers and headphones are subjective. Your ears are the most important ones to judge.
If you are looking for some headphones, below you’ll find other top picks for the best in-ear headphones, the best on-ear headphones and finally the best wireless headphones.
BEST HEADPHONES FOR MUSIC LOVERS
Best Overall: Bose QuietComfort 35 (Series II)
Best Budget: Skullcandy Grind
Best For DJs: Beasts Pro
Best For Fitness: Jaybird X3 Sport
Best Wi-Fi: Beats Solo3
If you enjoyed this article you’ll probably like our other lists as well. Here are some popular resources from the Nechstar.
- The Another 8 Best Songs for Testing Your Headphones or Speakers
- 10 Best Bass Songs For Testing Your Headphones or Speakers
- Best Stereo Turntables
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