The launch of lossless audio on Apple Music is pretty exciting for diehard audiophiles and music enthusiasts as a whole. However, what’s not so great is that you cannot enjoy this high-fidelity sound on wireless Bluetooth headphones, including Apple’s own AirPods Max. That’s where wired headphones come in!
You need to invest in special audiophile headphones for lossless audio, equipped with the right drivers and features. These can be pretty expensive, but there are some relatively affordable options too. I’ve covered them all in this roundup of the best wired headphones for Apple Lossless Audio.
- Monolith M565C
- Audio-Technica ATH-M20X
- Philips SHP9500 HiFi
- Superlux HD 681
- Sony WH-1000XM4
- Beyerdynamic Amiron home
- SENNHEISER HD 820
- HIFIMAN HE-400I
Things you’ll need:
- An Apple Music subscription on a compatible Apple device, such as an iPhone (7 and later), iPad, Mac, or Apple TV.
- Lightning to 3.5mm audio cable or 3.5mm Headphone jack adapter to connect the compatible Apple device to the listed headphones.
1. Monolith M565C: Editor’s Choice
- Extra-large 66mm drivers
- Frequency response: 15-50,000 Hz
- Impedance: 20 Ohms
Here’s a pair of headphones that boasts a sleek exterior and a power-packed interior. The 66mm planar drivers inside the cups give you a superior, detailed, lossless audio experience at a relatively affordable price point.
Moreover, the symmetrical magnet structure allows the planar driver to perform efficiently in the closed-back design. Audio isolation is on point so you can immerse yourself in the sounds you love, keeping the distractions outside.
Further, the sturdy braided cables prevent tangling, so you can focus on listening to your music rather than sorting out a mess. Of course, they’ve been engineered for comfort, too, with a padded headband and soft faux leather ear pads. All in all, it strikes the perfect balance between audio quality, design, and affordability.
- Blend of quality and affordability
- Comfortable ear cups
- Sleek look and feel
- It might not fit bigger heads
2. Audio-Technica ATH-M20X: Best budget closed-back headphones
- Noise isolating
- Frequency response: 15~20,000 Hz
- Impedance: 47 Ohms
If you want to enjoy lossless audio without breaking the bank, here’s one of the best wired headphones for the iPhone. They deliver a slightly enhanced bass profile but overall sound pretty neutral – suitable to enjoy lossless audio.
Further, the wide 15Hz~20kHz frequency response is ideal for monitoring recordings and mixes. At the same time, the ear cups contour around your ears to isolate background sounds in loud environments.
Of course, at this low price point, you cannot expect a premium audiophile experience. However, the comfort is quite adequate, and the robust headband ensures durability. I also like the one-sided cable, which minimizes clutter.
- Sturdy build quality
- Enhanced bass profile
- Do not fold up, so not portable
3. Philips SHP9500 HiFi: Budget option with open-back design
- Open back
- 50mm neodymium drivers
- Frequency response: 12-35,000 Hz
- Impedance: 32 Ohms
If you prefer an open-back design, here’s an affordable pair of Apple lossless-compatible headphones that are worth checking out. They have 50mm neodymium drivers that angle to align perfectly with your ears and cover the full spectrum of sound.
At the same time, they offer a neutral sound profile and are suitable for various genres. The low impedance means that these work great with and without headphone amplifiers, allowing you to enjoy greater sound transparency and smooth high frequencies.
Further, they boast breathable ear cushions and a steel headband for strength and durability.
- Good build quality
- Light and comfortable
- Works well with or without headphone amplifiers
- Feels uncomfortable after a couple of hours
4. Superlux HD 681: Best semi-open design
- Semi-open design
- 50mm Neodymium Drivers
- Frequency response: 10-30,000 Hz
- Impedance: 32 Ohms
Here’s a pair of audiophile headphones with a semi-open design that helps reproduce a more extended low-bass. This means you can really feel that amazing thump and rumble in music that’s heavy on the bass. At the same time, the neutral and balanced sound profile makes these suitable for enjoying all kinds of genres.
Moreover, they fit pretty well and sit well on the head, thanks to the self-adjusting headband. You can wear them for several hours at a time without feeling the weight. Although comparatively cheaper, they match the performance of many higher-end headphones, which is deficiently a win.
- Extended low-bass
- Suitable for all music genres
- Comfortable for long hours
- Build quality could be better
5. Sony WH-1000XM4: Best of both worlds (wired+wireless)
- Frequency response: 4 Hz-40,000 Hz
- Impedance: 47 Ohms
Although you can’t enjoy Lossless Audio on Bluetooth headphones, here’s a pair of hybrid headphones that work in both wired and wireless modes for the best of both worlds. You can plug it in to enjoy high-fidelity audio, and when you prefer not to, you can use the portable Bluetooth mode.
The 40mm drivers with Liquid Crystal Polymer (LCP) diaphragms reproduce a full range of frequencies.
What’s more? It boasts industry-leading noise cancellation with dual noise sensor technology. Further, the speak-to-chat technology automatically reduces the volume during conversations, while the wearing detection pauses playback when headphones are removed.
These headphones offer about 30 hours of battery life on Bluetooth mode, and you can control playback using the touch sensors.
- Great noise cancellation
- Comfortable to wear
- Works well for calls too
- Handy foldable design
- Touch controls are tricky to use
- Open back
- Velvety soft headband and ear pads
- Frequency Response: 15-24,000 Hz
- Impedance: 40 Ohms
Get ready to be transported into your personal concert hall, where you can forget the real world and immerse yourself in your favorite music. These are one of the best audiophile headphones for a Hi-Fi listening experience. They offer incredibly precise bass with transparent mids and mellifluous clear highs.
The open design produces a spacious, natural sound, and you feel an incredible closeness and transparency in the music.
They’re comfortable, too, with nicely padded ear pads and optimal weight. You can see and feel the fine-tuned German engineering that ensures these will be worth the price to last you a long time. It’s the perfect choice for audiophiles who want to enjoy various music genres without spending thousands of dollars.
- Unbeatable comfort
- Expressive dynamics
- Superb build quality
7. SENNHEISER HD 820: Best high-end audiophile headphones
- Sound isolation
- Frequency response: 6-48,000 Hz
- Impedance: 300 Ohms
Delight the audiophile in you with this set of premium wired Sennheiser headphones that cost a pretty penny but are worth each one.
These are made of a combination of Gorilla Glass and sound-absorbing chambers that prevent sound waves from bouncing back into the drivers. This results in a closed, noise-isolating design for luxurious private listening.
Further, they boost ring radiator transducers for incredible detail and extension. They’re the go-to headset for unbeatable precision with the perfect low frequencies and expertly controlled base. You can keep listening for hours as the premium soft earpads provide the ultimate comfort.
- Unbeatable performance
- Extreme comfort
- Incredible detail and extension
- Superior build quality
8. HIFIMAN HE-400I: Best lightweight wired headphones
- Open back
- Planar magnetic drivers
- Frequency Response: 20-35,000 Hz
- Impedance: 35 Ohms
Here’s another pair of headphones for lossless audio with the added advantage of being about 30% lighter than similar gadgets. I love the beveled hybrid ear pads made of soft faux leather and velour. Plus, the headband sits well and feels comfortable for long sessions.
Moreover, they are created by the innovator of the planar magnetic technology and designed especially for critical listening at home or in the studio. They have an evenly distributed magnetic force for low distortion and accurate reproduction of live sound.
- Incredibly lightweight
- Comfortable for long hours
- Amazing sound quality
- Material could be stronger
FAQs related to wired headphones
Audiophile headphones are premium headphones that can deliver sound with the highest possible accuracy so that what you hear is very close to what was recorded.
It depends on your preferences and priority. If you love music and want to experience it in the purest form, audiophile headphones are worthy investments that help you experience uncompressed sound, such as Apple lossless audio.
All the best audiophile headphones will support Apple lossless. These include high-end headphones like SENNHEISER HD 820, Beyerdynamic Amiron Home, Sony WH-1000XM4, and more.
Closed-back headphones are sealed to isolate you from external ambient noise, while open-back headphones allow air and sound to flow out. They do not isolate the audio you’re listening to, but this often means they offer cleaner, more “spacious” sound for an authentic audiophile experience.
That wraps up my roundup of the best wired headphones for Apple Music lossless audio. While my favorite on the list is Monolith M565C for its within budget and offers a great experience, you can go for Sony WH-1000XM4 if you are willing to invest in the premium ones.
I’m excited to see what the future holds for high-fidelity sound on streaming services. Have you tried it yet? Let me know in the comments below!