Six comfy headphones (one you need a loan to buy)

CNET editors round up the best headphones for an ultracomfortable listening experience. Represented brands include Grado, Ultrasone, Ultimate Ears, and more.

Grado PS1000

Sound quality is an important factor when picking out headphones, but it's not the only thing you should consider when you're investing in a top quality pair. If you are the type of person who likes to listen to music for long stretches of time--and if you're plunking down a decent chunk of change on a quality set of headphoes, you probably are--it's important to make sure that they're not going to snag on your hair or rest uncomfortably on the cartilage of your ears.

As such, I set out on a mission to find some of the most comfortable headphones that CNET has reviewed over the years. A good rule of thumb is to pick out a full-size--but relatively lightweight--pair with soft padding and plenty of it, and that includes on the headband, as well as on the ear cups.

Earbuds usually aren't totally comfy for most people--they get caught on things and pull out easily, and they can irritate some people's ear canals--but I threw one set in for good measure in case you need ultraportability. Our reviewer found them to be more than adequate in the comfort department. There's also one Bluetooth pair for those who find wires to be a serious hindrance to their comfort.

Check out CNET's most comfortable headphones

About the author

    Since 2003, Jasmine France has worked at CNET covering everything from scanners to keyboards to GPS devices to MP3 players. She currently cohosts the Crave podcast and spends the majority of her time testing headphones, music software, and mobile apps.



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