Koss Headphones for Every Budget




The Koss Corporation is renowned for having invented the stereo headphones or “stereophones” as they were originally called. Today, the company offers a wide range of headphone models in every style, and priced to fit every budget.

In-Ear Headphones

The Koss CC_01 isolating in-ear headphones handle the issue of varying ear canal sizes by adjusting the ear cushion with a rotating dial. The ported design enhances frequency response and provides deep bass, and provides comfort. Convenient for travel, the headphones feature a durable fabric cord and come with two carrying cases; a soft leather case and a rugged tin case.

Smartphone users will love the Koss i150 high fidelity in-ear headphones not only for their comfortable, molded silicone cushions, but also for the in-line microphone and push-to-talk button that allows users to take a call or access any phone function without removing their headphones. They work with Apple’s iPhone or any Smartphone with a 3.5 mm (1/8”) jack. The in-ear design is ideal for active lifestyles, and the powerful driver produces clear highs and deep bass. A carrying case and a selection of ear cushions for different ear sizes are included.

If the i150s are a bit beyond your budget, the iSpark in-ear headphones may be just the ticket. Featuring the same in-line microphone and button configuration as the i150, the iSparks deliver deep bass response and extended frequency spectrum. A “slow memory” foam material in the cushions slowly conforms to the ear, providing great isolation and a custom fit with every use.

The IL100 features great Koss sound and performance-tuned, 9mm drives. With polished aluminum construction surrounded by a soft, flexible material that doubles as soundproofing, the IL100 reduces surrounding distractions while providing clear highs and crisp lows, and is available in black or white. A patented interlocking design provides convenient storage.

Koss has also thought about the cumbersome knots and tangles common to ear buds, with the RUK30 from the Rukus series, by using a special flat cord that reduces tangling during storage. Available in multiple colors, the RUK30s feature cushioning that provides both comfort and noise isolation at an affordable price.

Taking affordability even further, the Pathfinder headphones don’t skimp on quality. With memory foam cushions for a custom fit that molds to your ear, the Pathfinder’s noise-isolating design blocks out ambient noise while it delivers enhanced bass and clarity.

Ear-Clip Headphones

Some people need a little more grip to their headphones. The KDE250 ear-clip headphones feature a special pair of perpendicularly mounted dynamic transducers that provide greater efficiency across the musical spectrum.

A 20mm transducer is low-frequency dominant and ported, while a second 13mm transducer focuses on mid and upper frequencies in a side-firing angle. Three sizes of metal ear clips provide a personalized fit.

For everyday comfort and function, the more affordable KSC9 sport-clip headphones eliminate the need for a conventional headband. The headphones employ a side-firing design that aims the element sideways into the ear canal for a more natural sound, enhancing the bass and overall fidelity while reducing the physical contact between the headphones and your ears. The pliable molded rubber ear clips adjust to your individual shape and allow you to stay on the move without a lot of fuss.

Check out the even more affordable P9 ear-clip headphones, if a wraparound design suits your needs. These lightweight headphones feature the same side-firing elements as the KSC9s, but the behind-the-head design is adjustable and accommodates all sizes, and won’t interfere with anything else on your head like helmets or hats. Weighing in at around half an ounce, the P9s are comfortable for long hours of listening, with minimum ear contact.

Full Sized / On-Ear Headphones

The QZ900 Noise Cancelling Headphones take noise reduction, quality and comfort to a new level with this latest addition to the Koss Quiet Zone line. The closed leatherette ear cushion provides passive noise reduction, but the magic is in the electronics. Each ear cup has a microphone designed to pick up outside noise, and electronics that analyze and process the incoming sound. By introducing a signal that’s 180° out of phase, the unwanted low-frequency noise from things like fans, airplanes or even lawn mowers is dramatically reduced. You can turn off the noise cancellation when it’s not needed, and an in-line volume control resides on the removable cord. You can also remove the cord and use the headphones for active noise reduction even if you’re not listening to music. One AAA battery provides 50 hours of noise cancellation.

The TBSE1 full-size headphones, named after and endorsed by Tony Bennett, feature a wide 10 Hz to 25 kHz frequency response to capture all the nuance of your classic recordings. A comfortable, closed-ear design keeps the world out as you enjoy the included free download of Tony Bennett's new Duets II album. They fold flat, are DJ friendly with rotating earpieces and have a nice cloth-covered carrying case and an extra long 8-foot (2.4 meter) detachable coiled cable with a 1/8” (3.5mm) to 1/4" (6.3mm) plug adapter.

If you are constantly on the go but prefer full sized to something more compact, the TD85 headphones from the Koss Pulse Series are both lightweight and rugged. Listen loudly without bothering those around you, and enjoy the noise isolation in public spaces without inconveniencing others. Constructed with steel yoke reinforcement, an extra wide steel headband and an 8-foot (2.4 meter) Kevlar-reinforced coiled cable, these sturdy cans also deliver clear, clean sound thanks to oxygen-free copper voice coils that improve signal transmission.

Another light yet sturdy model is the UR50 headphones, with an extended frequency response of 16 Hz to 22 kHz, thanks to the use of rare-earth magnets made of neodymium, iron and boron. Bass and intensity is enhanced with the closed ear cup design that isolates noise and makes for comfortable wearing. Swiveling, folding ear cups allow for DJ functionality and easy portability.

But if you would rather hear what people are trying to say to you while still listening to your program material, the open screen ear cups of the UR55 headphones allow you to monitor your surroundings, which is not only handy but also safer out in public. Air circulation and thick padding keeps the ears comfortable as you enjoy the neodymium magnet extended frequency response of 18 Hz to 22 kHz. Single-ear listening with swivel ear cups top off these studio headphones that supply massive bass and crystalline highs.

On a Budget

The lightweight UR18 full-sized headphones nevertheless deliver heavyweight sound. These noise isolating studio headphones are great for travel, but also inexpensive enough to buy a few sets to pass out in the project studio for the recording musicians. The closed leatherette ear cushions reduce audio bleed, while the adjustable headband keeps them on your head, even when you’re rocking out. An 8-foot (2.4 meter) cord provides room to roam.

Take it up a notch with the ultra-lightweight UR21v headphones that add an in-line volume control that’s perfect for casual listening. Even with low voltage portable devices you’ll be amazed at the bass response and clarity when you turn up the volume. The closed-back headphones minimize sound leakage to avoid disturbing others.                                                         

Finally, when price and portability are of the utmost importance, the KPH13 active headphones are ideal for listening anywhere, and anytime you’re on the go. As part of the Everywear Series, these extremely light headphones feature side-firing elements for surprisingly smooth sound. The over-the-head design keeps the headphones securely and comfortably on your head, and the music in your ears.

There is no reason you can’t treat yourself to the sound experience provided by products from the legendary Koss Corporation. With the wide range of pricing and features, there is certainly a model that suits your budget and needs. Thanks for checking out this B&H overview. If you have any questions about these headphones, or if you want to share your own experience with them, we’d love to read about it in the Comments section below.

  Type Frequency Response Impedance Sensitivity Cord Type Cord Length
CC_01 In Ear 10 H -20 kHz 16Ω 108 dB SPL Straight, Dual Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
i150 In Ear 10 Hz-20 kHz 102 dB SPL Straight, Single Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
iSpark In Ear 10 Hz-20 kHz 16Ω 102 dB SPL Straight, Single Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
IL100 In Ear 10 Hz-20 kHz 16Ω 100 dB SPL Straight, Single Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
RUK 30 In Ear Not Specified Not Specified Not Specified Not Specified Not Specified
Pathfinder In Ear 10 Hz-20 kHz 16Ω 112 dB SPL Straight, Dual Entry 4' (1.2 m)
KDE250 Ear Clip 40 Hz-20 kHz 16Ω 95 dB SPL Straight, Dual Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
KSC9 Ear Clip 40 Hz-20 kHz 32Ω 102 dB SPL Straight, Dual Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
P9 Ear Clip 40 Hz-20 kHz 32Ω 102 dB SPL Straight, Single Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
QZ900 Noise Cancelling 20 Hz-20 kHz 32Ω 100 dB SPL Straight, Single Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
TBSE1 Full Size 10 Hz-25 kHz 38Ω 99 dB SPL Coiled, Single Entry 8' (2.4 m)
TD85 Full Size 20 Hz-17 kHz 60Ω 98 dB SPL Coiled, Single Entry 8'
(2.4 m)
UR50 Full Size 16 Hz-22 kHz 36Ω 102 dB SPL Straight, Dual Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
UR55 Full Size 16 Hz-22 kHz 36Ω 100 dB SPL Straight, Dual Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
UR18 Full Size 25 Hz-15 kHz 32Ω 92 dB SPL Straight, Dual Entry 8'
(2.4 m)
UR21v Full Size 20 Hz-18 kHz 32Ω 90 dB SPL Straight, Single Entry 4'
(1.2 m)
KPH13 On Ear 40 Hz-20 kHz 32Ω 92 dB SPL Straight, Dual Entry 4'
(1.2 m)