Saturday, November 26, 2022

Best Open Back Headphones for Gaming in 2022

Affiliate disclosure: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. All opinions remain my own. You can learn more about our editorial policies here.

Are you looking for a more immersive gaming experience? If so, open back headphones may be the best choice for you. Unlike closed back headphones, which tend to create a sense of claustrophobia and can be quite distracting, open back headphones allow gamers to better hear their opponents and surroundings, making for a more enjoyable and exciting experience. In this article, we’ll take a look at some of the best open back headphones for gaming on the market today.

What are open back headphones?

Open-back headphones allow air flow through the headpiece and into the speakers. This means you don’t have to remove headphones to enjoy the game during the summer months when we all know how uncomfortable closed ear cans can be while making our ears sweat.

This open-back headset can be used for gaming as it reduces pressure on your sound. It is a device to allow hearing natural sound without additional echoing from the headphones.

1
beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO
Best Overall
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2
Philips Audio Fidelio X2HR
3
SENNHEISER HD 660 S
Audiophile Gaming Pick
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4
Philips Audio Philips SHP9500
Budget Open Back Gaming Headset Pick
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5
AKG Pro Audio K240 STUDIO
Semi-Open Back Headphones for Gaming
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6
AKG Pro Audio K70
Best Competitive Open Back Gaming Headset
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7
Monolith M1060
Best Planar Magnetic Headphones for Gaming
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8
SENNHEISER GSP 500
Open Back Headset with Mic
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9
Audeze LCDi3
Best Open Back Earbuds for Gaming
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10
Sony LinkBuds Truly Wireless Earbuds
Best Budget Open Back Earbuds for Gaming
Check Price Amazon.com
11
EPOS Audio H6PRO
Best with Open-Back or Closed-Back Option
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12
HIFIMAN HE-400I
Best For Gaming and Music
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Difference between closed and open headphones

Headphones are available in two different types: closed or open back headphones. Closed back headphones are completely sealed around the ear cups. This design blocks out most external noise and keeps sounds from leaking out of the headphones.

Open back headphones, on the other hand, have perforations in the ear cups that allow air to circulate. This results in a more natural sound and prevents the feeling of claustrophobia that can occur with closed back headphones.

Benefits of Open back Gaming Headsets

When it comes to gaming, open back headphones are the better choice for a number of reasons.

Benefits of Open-Back Gaming Headsets

First, they provide a more immersive experience by allowing you to hear your opponents and surroundings more clearly. Open back gaming headsets permit air passing through them from the rear of speaker drivers. This means resonances and low frequencies from rear enclosures don’t cause problems. Most expensive headphones feature open back headphones which give the headphones softer sounds.

Second, they’re more comfortable to wear for long periods of time, as they don’t cause the same level of claustrophobia that closed back headphones can.

Finally, they’re great for letting your ears breathe during long gaming sessions. Nothing is worse than having sweaty, uncomfortable ear cups after a few hours of gaming.

So, if you’re looking for the best gaming experience possible, be sure to check out some open back headphones. You won’t be disappointed!

Things to Consider When Choosing Open Back Headphones for Gaming

Things To Consider When Choosing the Best Open Back Headphones for Gaming

Style

Open back headphones are available in two types: classic and semi-open. The classic design has a completely open back, while the semi-open design has a partially closed back.

If you want the most immersive gaming experience possible, go for a pair of classic open back headphones. However, if you’re concerned about sound leakage or want a more balanced sound, semi-open headphones may be a better option.

Frequency Response Range

This is the range between low frequencies and high frequencies in Hertz (Hz) which are reproduced in the headphone. The common Hz frequency in the human body reaches 20 000 Hz. The large frequency response range makes you see even the faintest noises easily. A good headphones need 12000 Hz for achieving sound clarity.

Soundstage

The sound stage has myriad advantages over gaming headphones. Headphones with a great soundstage present an imaginary three dimensions created by the high-quality recording. A wide sound stage allows for a feeling of different sound sources.

This concept of locality is crucial to the gaming industry. Having the ability to see where footsteps come from can be useful for competition FPSs as well. Open back headphones have a bigger sound stage than closed back headphones.

Comfort

Gamers do not play for very long periods. In my own personal experience the gamer rarely leaves their chair for more than an hour. They must wear comfortable headphones for a longer period of time.

Generally, assessing headphone comfort can be done by evaluating the features of the headset. These comfortable headphones have a high adjustable weight, are lightweight, and are lined up nicely with padded earcups and headband. They should also be large enough for your ear. In addition, consider if you need headphones for glasses wearers as they have special needs.

Microphone

Most gamers will want a microphone to communicate with their teammates. When choosing an open back headset for gaming, be sure to check if the model comes with a microphone or if it’s an optional extra.

If you do need a microphone, pay attention to the quality of the mic. The headphones with the best microphones have a noise-cancelling feature to reduce background noise and deliver clear

Sound Profile

When choosing gaming headphones, sound quality is an important consideration. When it comes to sound quality, there are a few things to keep in mind. First of all, consider the sound profile of the headphones. Some headsets have a more bass-heavy sound, while others have a more balanced sound. It’s important to choose a headset that has a sound profile that you’re comfortable with. Secondly, consider the frequency response of the headphones.

This is the range of frequencies that the headphones are able to reproduce. A wider frequency response means that the headphones will be able to reproduce a wider range of sounds. Finally, consider the impedance of the headphones. This is a measure of how much power the headphones need in order to produce sound. Headphones with a higher impedance will require more power, but they will also be able to produce higher-quality sound. With the higher impedance , you may need an external headphone amp and DAC for gaming.

Wired vs Wireless

When it comes to gaming headphones, there are two main types: wired and wireless. Both have their own advantages and disadvantages.

Wired headphones are generally cheaper than wireless headphones and they don’t require batteries. However, they can be less comfortable to wear for long periods of time and they can be a bit more difficult to set up.

Wireless headphones are more expensive than wired headphones, but they’re much more comfortable to wear and they’re very easy to set up. However, they do require batteries, which can add to the overall cost of ownership.

Background Noise

One of the most important things to consider when choosing gaming headphones is the level of background noise that they can block out. If you’re playing in a noisy environment, you’ll want headphones that can effectively block out distractions so you can focus on the game. There are a few different types of headphones to choose from, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.

Closed-back headphones are great for blocking out background noise, but they can be pricey and may not be as comfortable to wear for long periods of time. Open-back headphones, on the other hand, are typically more affordable and offer a more natural sound experience, but they let in more background noise. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide what’s more important: blocking out distractions or being able to hear your game clearly. Whichever you choose, make sure to try them on before you buy to ensure a comfortable fit.

Construction

It is the construction quality on headphones that will ultimately determine its lifespan. Most high-end headphones are made with high-quality materials that can withstand years of use. When it comes to construction, there are a few things to keep in mind.

First of all, consider the type of material that the headphones are made out of. Some materials, such as plastic, are more prone to breakage than others.

Secondly, take a look at the overall construction of the headphones. Make sure that the headphones are put together securely and that there are no loose parts.

Finally, pay attention to the warranty that comes with the headphones. This will give you an idea of how long the manufacturer expects the headphones to last.

Drivers

The driver size will influence how loud the speaker is and how much accuracy it can provide. If you intend to use headphones exclusively at home you will only need 40 mm driver space. If you want to use it on the go, look for headphones with 50 mm or more.

The most important thing to remember is that bigger does not always mean better. The quality of the drivers is more important than the size.

Price

Open back headphones can be expensive, but money does not necessarily guarantee optimum performance. There are several inexpensive choices that produce good sound based on the quality. You can choose cheaper products that may not last long or give you good quality sound.

Why should I use open-back headphones for gaming?

There are several key benefits to using open-back headphones for gaming.

Lighter weight

The lighter, the more it works when something rests on your head longer. Its great quality audio, combined with lightweight frames will ensure that your ears do not fatigue when you play a console for extended periods. The weights for the open-ended headphones are distributed far from the ears, concentrating more primarily on the outer cups to give them a lighter appearance.

No more sweaty ears

Take the chance that you can work without the need of taking off your headphones every 30 seconds. Clean circulation and no heat ensures long listening hours with no interruptions. During this time the game was long and enjoyable due to the incredible heat transfer and passive cooling technique.

Excellent sound quality

The audiophile design will make you hear incredibly much more clear and sonic than the typical earphones on the market. Its companion is comfortable, long without your head pounding, and it allows breathing without interference from noise or heat emitted from your muscles.

More advanced driver options

When you buy Open back Headphones you can choose different designs that are unavailable in other products. The headphones have sophisticated designs and improved controls, which could easily meet all your needs.

More immersive experience

They offer a more immersive sound experience that closed-back headphones cannot provide. This is due to their design; closed-back headphones tend to create a sense of claustrophobia and can be quite distracting. Open-back headphones allow gamers to better hear their opponents and surroundings, making for a more enjoyable and exciting experience.

If you are looking for the best gaming experience, then you need to consider a pair of open-back headphones. They offer a more immersive sound experience that closed-back headphones cannot provide. This is due to their design; closed-back headphones tend to create a sense of claustrophobia and

The Best Open Back Gaming Headsets

Below are the top best open back headphones for gaming.

How We Tested

I have many pairs of open back headphones that I regularly use for critical listening and for comparisons in our reviews. I thought it would be great to test some out to see how they preformed for gaming as I typically use a closed back gaming headset such as our top gaming headset, the Arctis 7P.

To test I played a variety of my favorite RPG games like Witcher 3 and Horizon: Zero Dawn on my PS5. I also tried out some first person shooters like Doom Eternal, Apex Legends, and Rainbow Six Siege on PC and XBOX.

I was less concerned with mic quality since many of the open back models do not include a mic. I was focusing my review on the quality of the gaming audio playback and used an external microphone for commincaitons.

Best Overall: Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO

beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Best Overall

The DT 990 Pro has remained my favorite open back gaming headset after testing all of our headphones. They don’t come with the fancy name or LED lighting of game headphones, but deliver unbelievable gaming audio at a reasonable price. Throughout the frequency range, no complaints and it took explosions in shooters to a new terrifying level. Location detection was spot on in all the games I tried allowing me to react to enemies before they knew I was there.

Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO

This headphone is surprisingly comfortable. The headphones have plenty of cushioning on the earcups, and the earcups do not scratch your ears. Naturally, the back is wide to prevent sweating. They’re comfortable to wear for long gaming sessions, and they have a very sturdy and durable design.

In addition for being great for gaming, the DT 990 is a great all around headphone and made our list of top headphones under $500 earlier this year.

The only downside is that they’re not wireless, so you’ll need to use a cable to connect them to your PC or console. But if you’re looking for the best gaming headphones, the Beyerdynamic DT 990 PRO should be at the top of your list.

Runner-up: Philips Audio Fidelio X2HR

Philips Audio Fidelio X2HR

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Runner-up

When it comes to gaming headphones, there are a lot of options on the market. However, the Philips Audio Fidelio X2HR are widely considered to be the best open back gaming headphones available. Here’s why:

First and foremost, the sound quality is unbeatable. The X2HR use 50mm neodymium drivers to deliver crystal clear audio, with a wide frequency response that ensures you hear all the details in your game.

Additionally, the headphones have been designed for comfort, with soft ear cushions that won’t put pressure on your head even after long gaming sessions.

Finally, the Fidelio X2HR are extremely versatile. They come with a detachable microphone so you can use them for chatting with teammates, and they also have a 3.5mm jack so you can use them with just about any gaming system. Whether you’re looking for PC gaming headphones or something for your PS4 or Xbox One, the Fidelio X2HR should be at the top of your list.

Audiophile Pick: Sennheiser HD 660

SENNHEISER HD 660 S

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Audiophile Gaming Pick

If you like critical listening and games you can probably expect a slightly more natural tone from these Sennheiser HD660s. Rare is this kind of headphone to offer so much detail especially at such a price.

Using a coiled coil to reduce harmonic distortion and you hear sounds almost exactly the way it is produced by the studios. The HD650s is known for its superb midrange, which makes them particularly suitable for listening to classical songs and vocals along with games. Its sound signature was better compared to DT990 Pros that ranked at the top, but it doesn’t have the same level of bass.

This kind of headphones is designed for those who want to feel like they are in the game. If you don’t want to miss a single detail, then the Sennheiser HD 660 is the best choice for you.

Budget Pick: Philips SHP9500

Philips Audio Philips SHP9500

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Budget Open Back Gaming Headset Pick

Philips is not the prettiest name around but the Philips SHP9500 headphones are essentially hyped and are generally viewed as a steal for the money.

I shall focus largely on comfort. Its utilitarian design is made up of a quality steel band which weighs 10 ounces. Several people find the shallow ear cushion and low clamps slightly uncomfortable, however overall the product is solid in its design and should last for prolonged use. It has a very good sound quality.

Philips SHP9500

Mid and Treble accuracy is excellent. Unlike the sub basses on some models, Bass has an impressive kick. The headphone’s sound quality is good for games, music, and movies. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly option, the Philips SHP9500 is the best choice for you.

Semi-Open Back Headphones for Gaming: AKG K240 Studio

AKG Pro Audio K240 STUDIO

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Semi-Open Back Headphones for Gaming

Open-back audio headphones can be a major disadvantage as the noise leaks. Semi openback headphones partially solved this issue with partially molded covers for the ear. This was a popular design for professional studio use as it gave better quality sound. The AKG K240 Studio is an example of this with its drivers that produce clear highs and mids along with a nice bass response.

The headphones are also very comfortable with self-adjusting headbands and padded ear cups. They’re not too heavy, so you can wear them for long gaming sessions without your head getting tired.

If you’re looking for a pair of semi-open back headphones that will give you great sound quality and comfort, the AKG K240 Studio is the best choice for you.

Best Competitive Open Back Gaming Headset – AKG Pro Audio K702

AKG Pro Audio K70

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Best Competitive Open Back Gaming Headset

Are you looking for the best open back gaming headphones? If so, you may want to consider the AKG Pro Audio K702. These headphones are designed to provide an immersive gaming experience, with clear sound and deep bass. They also have a comfortable over-ear design that won’t cause fatigue after long sessions.

The AKG Pro Audio K702 features a flat-wire voice coil for higher sensitivity and reduced distortion. They also have a gold-plated mini jack for improved signal transfer. The results were crystal clear clarity in the higher frequencies and deep, tight bass.

AKG Pro Audio K702

If you’re looking for the best open back headphones for gaming, the AKG Pro Audio K702 should be at the top of your list.

Best Planar Magnetic Headphones for Gaming: Monolith M1060

Monolith M1060

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Best Planar Magnetic Headphones for Gaming

The Monolith M1060 are some of the best open back gaming headphones on the market. They provide an immersive gaming experience with their deep bass and clear highs. They also have a comfortable, over-ear design that is perfect for long gaming sessions.

A planar magnetic headphone uses a flat diaphragm that is suspended between two magnets. This provides better sound quality than traditional dynamic drivers. The Monolith M1060 features powerful neodymium magnets for clear sound and deep bass. They also have a lightweight aluminum voice coil for reduced distortion.

If you’re looking for the best planar magnetic gaming headphones on a budget, the Monolith M1060 is the best choice for you.

So, there you have it – the best open back headphones for gaming. Whether you’re looking for the best sound quality, the most comfort, or the best value, one of these options will be perfect for you.

Headset with Mic: Sennheiser GSP 500

SENNHEISER GSP 500

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Open Back Headset with Mic

It is rare that openback audio headphones have microphones. Practicality of combining open-back design to microphones is generally not necessary. Sound escaping from one or more ear cups is fed to a mic. The audio quality of the microphone would not be as great as a separate mic. If you are looking for an open back headset with a microphone, the Sennheiser GSP 500 is one of the best choices.

Sennheiser GSP 500

The Sennheiser GSP 500 has great audio quality with deep bass and clear highs. The ear cups are well-padded and comfortable for long gaming sessions. The headband is adjustable to fit any head size. The microphone is detachable and has great sound quality.

If you’re looking for the best open back headset with a microphone, the Sennheiser GSP 500 should be at the top of your list.

Best Open Back Earbuds for Gaming: Audeze LCDi3

Audeze LCDi3

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Best Open Back Earbuds for Gaming

If you’re looking for the best open back earbuds for gaming, the Audeze LCDi3 should be at the top of your list. These earbuds provide an immersive gaming experience with their clear sound and deep bass. They also have a comfortable, over-ear design that is perfect for long gaming sessions.

The Audeze LCDi3 features a planar magnetic driver for clear sound and deep bass. They also have a lightweight aluminum voice coil for reduced distortion. The results were crystal clear clarity in the higher frequencies and deep, tight bass.

Audeze LCDi3

The only drawback is the price puts them out of reach for many gamers. But if you’re looking for the best open back earbuds for gaming, the Audeze LCDi3 is the best choice for you.

Best Budget Open Back Earbuds for Gaming: Sony LinkBuds Truly Wireless Earbud

Sony LinkBuds Truly Wireless Earbuds

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Best Budget Open Back Earbuds for Gaming

If you’re looking for the best budget open back earbuds for gaming, the Sony LinkBuds Truly Wireless Earbud should be at the top of your list. These earbuds provide an immersive gaming experience with their clear sound and deep bass. They also have a comfortable, over-ear design that is perfect for long gaming sessions.

These headphones offer a truly wireless experience with no cords or wires to get in the way. The earbuds themselves are small and lightweight, making them comfortable to wear for long periods of time. They also feature a noise-cancelling microphone that allows you to be heard clearly even in noisy environments.

I found the bass response to be exceed my expectations and the highs were clear and crisp.

Sony LinkBuds True Wireless Earbud

In addition, the LinkBuds have a built-in rechargeable battery that provides up to eight hours of listening time on a single charge. Lastly, the LinkBuds come with a carrying case that doubles as a charging station.

The only drawback is the price is still high compared to other headphones tested. But if you’re looking for the best budget open back earbuds for gaming, the Sony LinkBuds Truly Wireless Earbud is the best choice for you.

Best with Open-Back or Closed-Back Option: EPOS Audio H6PRO

EPOS Audio H6PRO

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Best with Open-Back or Closed-Back Option

If you want the best of both worlds, the EPOS Audio H6PRO should be at the top of your list. These headphones come with both open-back and closed-back ear cups, so you can choose which option is best for you.

The EPOS h6Pro is available in either a closed-back or open-back configuration, depending on your preference. Both have the same high-quality build and are pleasant to use for long periods of time while gaming. The 3.5-mm output of the EPOS h6Pro ensures reliable connection throughout gaming sessions.

Although we liked the microphone and the sound quality it produced, it was not our top option for canceling out unwanted noises. The boom mic is detachable, however it’s connected by a special connection. Although it will set you back some money, this headset is worth the money if you are seeking for a premium headset.

Best For Gaming and Music: HIFIMAN HE-400i

HIFIMAN HE-400I

Amazon.com
as of November 26, 2022 6:40 am

Best For Gaming and Music

HiFiMAN’s planar magnetic line includes the HiFIMAN, an entry-level model. The HE-400 is usually seen as the HE-500’s replacement. The HIFIMAN HE-400I is currently one of the most affordable planar magnetic headphones on the market, thanks to a price reduction. The HE-400i isn’t a brand-new name in gaming. I’ve seen a number of gamers using it throughout the years. You may be wondering how well it works. A closer look at the review is warranted.

The first thing to consider is the quality of the construction. Both plastic and metal have been used in the construction. They’re made of plastic with a metallic sheen. It is possible to remove and modify the black grills, as some individuals have done. Plastic even makes an appearance on the headphone yokes. The metal tension bar on the top of the headband is unattractive. Despite its thinness, the suspended pleather headband distributes the weight evenly across the head without creating any hotspots. Velour and pleather combine in the FocusPad earpads. They have a rich, luxurious texture to the touch. The earpads can be taken out and washed. Additionally, the headphone cable can be removed.

HIFIMAN HE-400i

If you have a large head like a gamer, the HE-400i will fit comfortably on it. Overall, the comfort of these headphones may be attributed in large part to the quality of the headband and earpads. Comfortable, well-padded FocusPads have a nice fit over the ears. The headband sits comfortably on top of the head and provides a significant deal of adjustment. Initially, the clamp pressure may be painful, but after a few days of use, it becomes more tolerable. The HIFIMAN HE400I is a lightweight planar headphone weighing in at just 370 grams, which contributes much to the whole experience.

When listening to bass-heavy music, the HIFIMAN HE-400I lacks the thud or rumble that is most audible. This headphone’s strongest points are its midrange and treble. There is a lot of attention to detail in the presentation of the vocals and instruments. Clarity, naturalness, vibrancy and accurate sound reproduction characterize the treble response. Depending on your input, the HE-400i can sound either bright or a touch sibilant, but in the end, it produces exceptional sound quality compared to the other gaming headphones tested. The HE-400i should be able to handle a wide range of genres, including bass-heavy music.

Tips for Open Back Gaming Headsets

Do I need an amp for these gaming headphones?

Many open back headphones are designed for audiophiles who are looking for the best sound quality possible. As a result, they may require an amplifier to reach their full potential. Some gaming headsets, on the other hand, are designed to work with lower-powered devices like consoles and mobile phones.

If you’re using open back headphones for gaming, you may not need an amp, but it can’t hurt. Even an inexpensive amp such as the Schiit Magni 3+ or Heresy or the top rated Topping DX3 Pro can improve sound quality. If you’re looking for the absolute best sound quality, though, an amp is a must.

Final verdict

Open back headphones offer a more immersive gaming experience than closed back headphones. They allow you to better hear your opponents and your surroundings, making for a more exciting and enjoyable experience. You will have to decide if the sound stage upgrade is enough benefit for you to offset the convivences of the typical closed back gaming headset such as built-in boom microphone and easier to carry around.

FAQ

Will sound leak out or into open back headphones?

Yeah. The sound will escape from this headset. Generally speaking, it is possible using these headphones at 50% volume, but no noise is released. Another problem is background noise leaks because their openness is unable to isolate noise. These reasons only apply when you are in a room with others or with a lot of background noise.

Are audiophile gaming headphones worth it?

We would say that it depends on how important sound quality is to you. If you’re looking for the absolute best sound quality, then yes, audiophile gaming headphones are worth it. However, if you’re willing to sacrifice some sound quality for the convenience of a built-in mic and easier portability, then a typical closed-back gaming headset may be a better option for you.

Are open back headsets better?

There is no clear consensus on whether open back or closed back headphones are better. It ultimately comes down to personal preference. Some people prefer the natural sound reproduction of open back headphones, while others find them to be too bulky and inconvenient due to leaking in ambient noise. Ultimately, you’ll have to decide which type of headphone is right for you.

Are open back headphones good for FPS games?

Open back headphones can be good for FPS games as they allow you to better hear your opponents and your surroundings. However, they may not be the best choice if you’re looking for a competitive edge, as they don’t block out noise as well as closed back headphones.

Is open back headphone good for gaming?

Open-back headphones are great because of their wider sound stage and improved stereo imaging. Wearers enjoy their comfort and appreciate a better sound.

Quinn
Quinnhttps://www.thesoundawards.com
Hi, I am Quinn. I am an experienced audio engineer who has worked in the audio field for the past 20 years. I enjoy most genres of music and enjoy home recording and learning about new recording techniques. In my free time I enjoy reviewing the latest audio gear and gaming.

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