Beats revolutionized the headphone industry when they came on the market in 2008. For the first time, music fans were offered an option that focused on style without compromising on audio quality. They have exploded in popularity in the years since and have been worn by plenty of superstar producers and DJs. But are Beats good for DJing?
Any Beats headphones can be used for DJing however, as there are several models, some are more suitable than others. The Beats EP most closely resembles the industry standard, on-ear DJ headphones while the over-ear Beats Studio model are also suitable for DJing. Even with their slight tuning bias towards bass.
There are other factors involved, and models that are less suitable so I’m going to cover them individually. Starting by answering…
Are Beats EP Good for DJing?
Beats never used to be a really viable option for DJs due to the way they were EQ’d. Which meant they were tuned to be bass heavy. This is largely because they weren’t specifically designed for DJs, instead they were meant for general consumers.
A DJ doesn’t want to add extra color to their tracks (i.e a boosted bass), they need to be able to hear accurate sound replication. This way they can hear exactly what the audience is going to hear.
Thankfully the latest iterations of Beats have neutral sound tuning, meaning that they no longer boost the bass. This is infinitely more suitable for DJing from a sales perspective.
So Are Beats EP Headphones a Good Choice for DJing?
Where the Beats EP headphones might not be so suitable for DJing is in their focus on style and minimalism.
They don’t feature the heavyweight components and build quality needed to withstand the stresses of DJing. Ideally, they should be able to stand up to the pressures of touring and gigging. This is where they are most likely to get damaged by being thrown in bags and carried between gigs.
This wouldn’t necessarily be a problem if the components were replaceable. But the headphone pads, drivers and headband are all essentially one sealed unit. Meaning you cannot replace any one part individually.
That means if the wiring or one of the drivers go in one ear. You’re looking at having to buy an entirely new set of headphones.
As far as fit and comfort goes, this tends to be down to personal preference, and ultimately the size of your head. Many users report them as being too tight, which when using for longer DJ sets, could lead to tension headaches.
Assuming they do fit, they are lightweight and well-padded so should be comfortable. The headband is flexible although there isn’t a whole lot of give in there.
Their closed-back design does give them some sound isolation. However, because they are on-ear headphones and don’t cover the whole ear, they have limited ability to block out background noise.
Due to coming with a built-in mic, the Beats EP are headphones you can use both in the DJ booth and with your phone.
The cable is not exceptionally long, meaning you could quite easily pull or stress it while dancing around in the DJ booth. Considering you cannot replace the cable, this could be disastrous for the longevity of the headphones.
They also come with a mini-jack, so you would need an adapter to plug them into a mixer.
Another point on replaceable components is that as you sweat during gigs, this will eventually cause the ear pads to degrade. Again, because you can’t replace them, it is another factor that will shorten the life of your Beats headphones.
All of that said, the neutral tuning and snug headband do mean that, if they fit, at least you’ll look very stylish while DJing.
Who Are the Beats EP For?
Beats EP headphones are really designed for the consumer market, i.e the everyday music fan. This is backed by the fact that they include a built-in mic meaning they can be used with phones. This makes them ideal for the casual listener. While they can be used for DJing they are not specifically designed or marketed for that purpose.
- Beats EPs are no longer tuned to be bass-heavy.
- Beats EP are still designed for consumers over DJs.
- Although they are built of durable material, they are not as resilient as some specific DJ headphones.
- The tight fit may make them uncomfortable for some users.
- The built-in microphone makes them suitable for both DJing and phone use.
- As on-ear headphones, they have limited capacity to isolate background noise.
- Individual components are not replaceable.
Are Beats Studio Good for DJing?
Beats Studio are amongst the wireless offerings in the Beats range. Though slightly tuned towards bass, they still have a good sound replication. Which means they can be used for DJing.
They also have noise cancellation meaning you can concentrate on your music rather than what is going on in the booth.
While they can last an impressive 22 hours of playback on a single charge (40 hours if you turn off noise canceling), you’re still going to want to make sure they are topped up before your gig.
While wireless headphones are debatable in reliability for DJing, the Beats Studios comes with long battery life and a decent range. So assuming there is no interference in the club, you should be good to use them. There is an optional cable that you can use just in case. Not having a wire, of course, allows you to move around to the DJ booth freely.
As seems to be the style with Beats headphones, they do have a reasonably tight clamp. This has both pros and cons in the DJ booth. On the plus side, it means you will be able to move and dance around without the headphones slipping off. However, for prolonged sets, you may find the clamping can start to get somewhat painful.
Like the Beats EP, the Studios are reinforced by a metal band, which should make them sturdier in the face of constant touring and gigging.
One thing to be wary of with Bluetooth headphones is that they can be prone to some latency. Therefore, it would be worth trying out a pair to see if they’re going to be suitable for your mixing style. As mentioned above there is an optional cable if latency is an issue.
- Beats Studio are wireless but comes with an optional cable.
- They include noise cancellation, which can be switched off to prolong battery life.
- Being over-ear headphones means they have some natural sound isolation.
- Although they are tuned towards bass, they are still viable for DJ use.
- Wireless headphones can be prone to latency, in which case you can use the cable.
- The Studios have the longest battery life in the Beats wireless range.
- A mic is included so you can use them with your phone.
- To DJ wirelessly you will require a Bluetooth transmitter, available from Amazon here.
What Is the Difference Between Beats EP and Studio?
There are a few significant differences between Beats Studio and Beats EP headphones. Perhaps the most obvious is in the look and style of each unit.
As the name implies, the Beat Studios are designed as more of a studio type headphone, i.e they are larger, over-ear headphones that cover the whole ear. The Beats EP are smaller, on-ear headphones.
Both units can be used with a cable. Although in the EPs the cable is fixed while the Studio’s cable can be removed and the headphones used wirelessly. The Studios also come with noise cancellation, which is not available in the EP range.
There is a difference in the tuning of the headphones as well. Whereas the Beats EP have fairly neutral sound replication, the Studios comes with a slightly boosted bass. This is actually a departure from normal studio headphones which usually have a neutral turning. This is because a DJ or Producer generally doesn’t want any extra color added to their audio.
Check out the table below for a quick reference on the differences between Beats Studio and Beats EP headphones.
Beats EP vs Beats Studio
|Beats EP||Beats Studio|
|Type||On Ear||Over Ear|
|Battery Life||n/a||22hrs (40 without noise canceling)|
|Price||$130 approx||$350 approx|
Are Beats Solo Pro Good for DJing?
Beats Solo Pros are completely wireless (i.e. there is no optional cable) and also feature active noise cancelation. This helps block out background/ambiance noise and allows the listener to focus more on their music.
Technically they are on ear headphones, however they are slightly larger than most on ear headphones. This means they have a bit of extra padding while still being portable and foldable. Speaking of portability, the Beats Solo Pros headband folds and the cups swivel meaning they pack down neatly into a small package.
As mentioned above, the main feature of the Solo Pros is the noise cancelling. Meaning in the DJ booth there is a higher level of isolation and you are able to preview tracks with much more clarity.
Which brings me nicely on to their tuning…
The Beats Solo Pro soundstage is designed for pure clarity, meaning they don’t overly boost the bass etc. Instead, they do an excellent job presenting bright clear sound on all frequencies. This makes them suitable for DJs and Producers who aren’t looking to have their sound affected.
Unlike Beats Studio, the Solo Pros do not come with an optional cable so you can only ever use them as a wireless unit.
That said, they have an excellent battery life of up to 22 hours (40 with noise canceling turned off) and include smart technology that automatically switches them off when folded.
The only potential downside from a DJing/Production perspective is an issue common to all wireless headphones, and that is latency.
Due to the signal needing to be transmitted (from the mixer or phone) to the headphones, there can be a minuscule delay in the audio being heard. This is not an issue for the casual listener, however for a DJ that needs to make tiny corrections, it can add an extra complication to the mix.
To use Beats Solo Pros for DJing you’ll need a Bluetooth transmitter to plug into your mixer as these do not come as standard. This is understandable given that Beats Solo Pros are more geared towards everyday listeners than they are the DJ market.
- Beats Solo Pro are wireless only, there is no optional cable
- They are tuned for clarity, meaning there is no bias towards any specific frequency
- Smart technology prolongs the battery life up to 22 hours (40 with noise canceling off)
- The design features larger pads than previously, making them comfortable on ear headphones
- Active noise canceling means background noise is significantly reduced
- They include a mic making them suitable for use with your phone
What’s the Difference Between Beats EP and Beats Solo Pro?
The differences between Beats EP and Beats Solo Pro are many. From a design perspective, while both are on ear headphones the Solo Pros have more padding while the Beats EP are slightly smaller. The Beats Solo Pros collapse down into a smaller unit and the Beats EP do not, the cups do swivel but the headband is fixed.
The differences are also significant from a functionality point of view. The Solo Pros are wireless vs the Beats EPs being wired with a fixed cable.
The Beats Solo Pros also feature noise cancellation which is not included on the Beats EP. In fact, due to the Beats EP being smaller they will be vastly less effective at blocking out background noise.
Neither pair of headphones has any particular tuning towards bass or highs for example. Instead, the soundstage has been created to give the DJ or Producer accurate and clear sound representation.
What’s the difference between Beats EP and Beats Solo Pro? See the table below
Beats EP vs Beats Solo Pro
|Beats EP||Beats Solo Pro|
|Type||On Ear||On Ear|
|Battery Life||n/a||22hrs (40 without noise canceling)|
|Price||$130 approx||$300 approx|
What Is the Difference Between Beats Solo Pro and Beats Studio?
Differences between Beats Solo Pro and Beats Studio are actually much smaller than compared with the Beats EP for example. The Studio editions are larger over-ear headphones although both have extra padding for increased comfort.
Both units fold-down to make them more portable and less likely to be damaged when carrying between gigs. Another commonality is that both units can operate wirelessly although the Beats Studio comes with an optional cable. This can be handy from a DJ or producer perspective as it removes any potential latency issue.
Both units feature active noise canceling although the Solo Pros have ‘transparent mode’ which still allows some ambient sound through. In terms of tuning, the Solo Pros have clear sound replication while the Studios have a slight bias towards bass.
For a quick reference of the differences between Beats Studio and Beats Solo Pro, check out the table below.
Beats Solo Pro vs Beats Studio
|Beats Solo Pro||Beats Studio|
|Type||On Ear||Over Ear|
|Battery Life||22hrs (40 without noise canceling)||22hrs (40 without noise canceling)|
|Price||$300 approx||$350 approx|
What Is the Difference Between Beats Headphones?
The Beats range gives you a variety of options depending on your needs. Every model includes a mic making them suitable for use with your phone.
For those of us that don’t mind wires the Beats EP come with a fixed cable making them suitable for both the casual everyday listener and for DJ use. On the other hand, Beats Studio and Beats Solo Pros both operate wirelessly, although Beats Studio does come with an optional cable.
The Beats Solo Pro and Studio models can be more comfortable than the Beats EP. The Studios are larger over-ear headphones while the Solo Pros are on the larger side of on-ear headphones. Both offer more natural sound isolation from background noise than the EPs do.
When it comes to tuning, both the Beats EP and Solo Pro editions are tuned for clear sound replication so don’t bias any particular frequency. The Beats Studio, however, have a bias towards the bottom end, meaning there is a slight boost in bass.
To quickly see the differences between Beats headphones I have compiled a comparison table below.
Beats EP vs Solo Pro vs Studio
|Beats EP||Beats Solo Pro||Beats Studio|
|Type||On Ear||On Ear||On Ear|
|Battery Life||n/a||22hrs (40 without noise canceling)||22hrs (40 without noise canceling)|
|Price||$130 approx||$300 approx||$350 approx|
Which Beats Headphones Are Best for DJing?
When it comes to determining which Beats headphones are best for DJing, you need to consider your style and how particular you are in your technique. The Beats EP headphones most closely resemble DJ specific headphones, given that they are wired and on-ear headphones with a neutral tuning. In this respect their design is similar to the industry standard headphones which you can find here.
When it comes to deciding between the Beats Solo Pro and Beats Studio headphones for DJing the recommendation would be the Beats Studio. This is because latency can sometimes be an issue when using wireless headphones, particularly if there is interference in the connection. This can be negated in the Studio edition as they come with an optional wire cable.
A couple of things worth noting about using the Beats Studio for DJing…
- They have a slight bass bias in their tuning, many DJs actually see this as a plus as it can make beat matching easier.
- You will also require an adapter to use the Beats Studio and this is true in using them wired or wireless
- Firstly, you will need an adaptor to go from a mini-jack to 1/4 inch jack (this one on Amazon comes with an extra foot of length. Very handy for the DJ booth).
- For wireless, you will also need to buy a separate Bluetooth transmitter to plug into your mixer, you can find our recommended transmitter on Amazon here.
The above means that both the Beats EP and Beats Studio headphones are viable contenders for the best Beats for DJing.
- Beats EP most closely resemble the industry-standard DJ headphones.
- Both Beats EP and Solo Pro have clear sound replication while the Studios are slightly bass-heavy.
- Wireless headphones can be prone to latency meaning Beats EP or Studio are the best options for DJing.
A Note on Beats Mixr
For a while, Beats did produce Mixrs which were specifically targeted at the DJ industry. These were built more sturdily than other models, could be folded up, and had replaceable components.
Sadly, it seems these have discontinued, at least for now. This could have been due to the acquisition by Apple, who have much more of a consumer focus than when Beats was an independent company.
Are Beats Good for Music Production?
Oddly enough, in deciding are Beats good for music production, the model you would think most likely, the Beats Studio, actually fall short. This is because the Beats Studio boost the bass frequencies, whereas a producer needs their headphones to replicate sound completely unaffected.
This makes the Beats EP or Beats Solo Pro better options given that they both have tuning designed for clarity.
Because a producer needs to focus on the music they are making, then the Solo Pro does a better job of blocking out background noise. Both through the active noise cancellation and the fact that they are slightly larger on ear headphones.
What is arguable is whether a producer would necessarily need a wireless set of headphones. Given that they are sat down in front of their computer where wires are not an issue. What is an issue is the potential latency caused by the Solo Pros being wireless.
So in this instance the Beats EP probably win out in the best Beats headphones for music production.
A Brief History of Beats
Beats was founded by Dr Dre and Jimmy Lovine in 2006 and released their first headphones in 2008. Due to their focus on style, and the brand power of Dre, they quickly established dominance in the premium headphones market.
After various partnership deals, the majority share was sold to HTC in 2011, but was bought back by Beats in 2013. At that point, the company was valued at approximately one billion dollars.
However, barely a year later, it was announced that Apple was purchasing Beats Electronics, and Beats Music for a total of $3 billion.
Not bad for a company that was little more than six years old.
Conclusion Are Beats Headphones Good for DJing?
As we have seen from above, there are a few factors you need to consider in using Beats headphones for DJing. This is because Beats are focused more towards everyday listeners than they are DJs. That doesn’t mean that Beats are unsuitable for DJing and both Beats EPs and Studios will do the job just fine.
However, it is worth bearing in mind that most DJs who use Beats are doing so because they value looking good over having the best tool for the job.
Which is fine, but if you really want the best DJ headphones for the job then you can get better ones for a similar cost or less (like our recommended set which you can see here).
Remember if you do want to use Beats to DJ you will require an adaptor to plug them into the mixer.
- This one comes with a handy extra foot of length
- To use Beats wirelessly with a mixer you will need a Bluetooth transmitter
If you have any other questions regarding using Beats for DJing, then drop them in the comments below.