HeadphonesAddict is user supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. Do you want to look “kawaii” when wearing headphones? Take a look at the cutest headphones in 2023. This guide will teach you how to pick the best cat ear headphones, what to keep an eye on and what to avoid. Also, you’ll learn the story of a broken friendship surrounding their origin (more on that later). Previous Next Rating Price Connection Battery LED lights Foldable Review Razer Kraken Kitty Edition 4.6 Under $130 Wired – USB / checkmark cross Review YOWU Cat Ear Headphone 3G 4.4 Under $140 Wireless – Bluetooth 48 hours (LED off) checkmark cross Review Censi Cat Ear Headphones 4.3 Under $90 Wireless – Bluetooth 10 hours cross checkmark Review SOMIC G951pink 4.4 Under $50 Wired – 3.5mm / checkmark cross Review Edifier HECATE G2 II 4.4 Under $50 Wired – USB / checkmark cross Review Riwbox Kids Headphones 4.6 Under $40 Wireless – Bluetooth 10 hours checkmark cross Review Axent Wear New Edition Wireless Cat Ear Headphones 4.4 Under $130 Wireless – Bluetooth 30 hours checkmark checkmark Review Mindkoo Unicat 4.4 Under $40 Wireless – Bluetooth 70 hours (LED off) checkmark checkmark Review FosPower Kids Headphones 4.6 Under $20 Wired – 3.5mm / checkmark cross Review iClever Boostcare 4.5 Under $20 Wired – 3.5mm / cross cross Review Brookstone Wired Cat Ear Headphones 4.2 Under $100 Wired – 3.5mm / checkmark checkmark Review CONTENTS (show more) With cat ear headphones, there’s much more than meets the eye. To some, cat ear headphones are a fashion statement, whereas, for others, they’re an extension of their personality, showing their admiration for Japanese culture and anime. In this guide, you’ll learn: what to look for in the best cat ear headphoneshow various features work and why are importantand of course, a little bit of history behind the cat ear design. Trust me, it’s quite interesting. How To Choose the Best Cat Ear Headphones? Here’s what you should consider when buying cat ear headphones. Design: You want your headphones to look cute and also be functional. They come in various colors and display different lighting effects, or they even double as external cat ear speakers.Comfort: You can’t wear headphones if they aren’t comfortable. Strive to get the comfiest headphones possible.Sound Quality: Furthermore, you can’t enjoy headphones if they sound bad. While you can’t expect audiophile-grade fidelity, at least look for decent clarity, volume limiters (if you’re buying a kids headphone), and external noise cancellation (if you plan to use them in the office or for commuting).Connection: Should you opt for a wired version, or do you prefer to go wireless mode. That also brings battery life into consideration.Durability: Unfortunately, manufacturers tend to cheap out on build quality. Still, you can get high-quality headphones if you know where to look. Best Cat Ear Headphones in 2023 1. Razer Kraken Kitty Edition The best cat ear headphones from a top brand. Razer Kraken Kitty Edition are loved by many streamers and otaku in general. Connection: Wired – USB Driver size: 50mm dynamic Frequency range: 20-20.000Hz Type: Over-ear | Back design: Closed-back | Noise cancelling: No | Mic & Controls: Yes | Impedance: 32 Ohm | Weight: 14.3 oz (406 g) | Cable lenght: 4.27 ft (1.3 m) | Surround sound: THX Spatial | Features: RGB effects, Cosplay mode, unidirectional ECM boom mic Bassy but good sound quality Great mic performance Durable & comfortable build Cosplay mode Quite heavy Non-detachable cable Razer Kraken Hello Kitty Edition Wireless Headset Pink Certified Refurbished Razer Kraken Hello Kitty Edition Wireless Headset Pink Certified Refurbished $89.99 $119.99 in stock Buy now eBay Razer Kraken Kitty RGB USB Gaming Headset: THX 7.1 Spatial Surround Sound – Chroma RGB Lighting -… Razer Kraken Kitty RGB USB Gaming Headset: THX 7.1 Spatial Surround Sound – Chroma RGB Lighting -… $99.99 $149.99 in stock 5 new from $99.99 12 used from $62.40 as of March 25, 2023 12:12 am Buy now Amazon.com Razer Kraken Kitty RGB USB Gaming Headset: THX 7.1 Spatial Surround Sound – Chroma RGB Lighting -… Razer Kraken Kitty RGB USB Gaming Headset: THX 7.1 Spatial Surround Sound – Chroma RGB Lighting -… out of stock Buy now Walmart.com Kitty headphones don’t skimp on bass, producing a head-rattling rumble when playing games or listening to more modern music genres. Connecting them to the Razer Synapse app gives you the ability to tweak EQ settings and play around with lighting effects. They work via the USB connector. There’s even a dedicated Cosplay Mode, which remembers the selected RGB effects, which means that as long as you keep them powered, they’ll shine through the entire cosplay convention. The design and construction of these kitty headphones aren’t shabby, as well. You get extremely comfortable gel-filled cushions to keep your ears cool, whereas the aluminum inside the adjustable headband provides rigidity. It’s worth noting there’s a Bluetooth version of the Kraken Kitty aimed at mobile users or Nintendo Switch. 2. YOWU Cat Ear Headphone 3G The best alternative to the original design cat ear headphones. Whereas original Brookstone and Axent cat ear headphones are hard to find, the YOWU 3G provide an excellent alternative to those offers. Connection: Bluetooth 5.0 + USB Driver size: 40mm dynamic Frequency range: 10-20.000Hz Type: Over-ear | Battery life: 48h (LED off), 3-20h (LED on) | Wireless range: 33ft (10m) | Noise cancelling: No | Charging: 1.6h – quick charge – USB-C | Mic & Controls: Yes | Weight: n/a | Surround sound: 7.1 | Features: RGB, aptX, companion app Decent sound with heavy-bass Cool design with RGB lights Great battery life Hard-shell carrying case Lackluster microphone performance LED lights use a lot of energy Creative Cat Claw In-Ear Headphones 1 Enable You To Listen & Answer Calls Enjoy Music Blue Creative Cat Claw In-Ear Headphones 1 Enable You To Listen & Answer Calls Enjoy Music Blue $9.49 in stock Buy now Walmart.com YOWU Cat Ear Selkirk Wireless Headphones Bluetooth Gaming 3G Model Z JAPAN- Blue YOWU Cat Ear Selkirk Wireless Headphones Bluetooth Gaming 3G Model Z JAPAN- Blue $110.00 in stock Buy now eBay YOWU RGB Cat Ear Headphone 3G Wireless 5.0 Foldable Gaming Pink Headset with 7.1 Surround Sound,… YOWU RGB Cat Ear Headphone 3G Wireless 5.0 Foldable Gaming Pink Headset with 7.1 Surround Sound,… $129.00 in stock as of March 24, 2023 7:52 pm Buy now Amazon.com Much like the Kraken Kitty, these also display a bass-heavy output. The audio quality improves when going into audio settings and selecting the “YOWU 3G” and not the one with the “Hands-Free” tag. Depending on the color, some models resemble cat ears, whereas the others look like fox ears. Classified as gaming headphones, they come with RGB lights and 7.1 surround sound for a stellar gaming experience. Downloading an app enables you to change LED settings on the fly, sync sound effects with your favorite music, and even change your voice when taking in the microphone. Speaking of the latter, it’s pretty basic and only good to use in a quiet room. A beefy 48-hour battery is the longest one on this list, and it will last you a long time. 3. Censi Moesen Cute cat ear headphones with great value. Censi’s cat ear headphones offer features you might be surprised by, including sweatproof and foldable design for easy storage. Connection: Bluetooth 4.0 Driver size: 40mm Frequency range: 10-30.000Hz Type: Over-ear | Battery life: 10h | Wireless range: 33ft (10m) | Noise cancelling: No | Charging: Micro-USB | Mic & Controls: Yes | Bluetooth codecs: n/a | Water resistance: IPX4 | Features: 3.5mm port, foldable Cute, clean design Good passive isolation Enjoyable, punchy sound IPX4 protection against sweat and rain A bit heavy for kids No flashy lights They have a good frequency response with a little bass boost is excellent for cat ear headphones. You can use these for music listening of all kinds. Censi headphones feature what most cat ear headphones don’t. They are pretty good at noise reduction due to the design of the ear cup. Also, these have a soft leather design. They’re comfy to wear and adjustable to fit your head perfectly. Although, the leather can make your ears sweaty over time. The cat ears are removable, so you can take them off if you don’t feel like wearing them. Ten hours of battery life is also pretty impressive. For good audio clarity in a low price category and noise isolation, the Censi Moesen are a perfect choice. 4. SOMIC G951 Affordable cat ear gaming headsets. Thanks to a suspended headband, this budget pick fits most head sizes. Connection: WIred – USB Driver size: 40mm dynamic Frequency range: 20-20.000Hz Type: Over-ear | Back design: Closed-back | Noise cancelling: No | Mic & Controls: Yes | Impedance: 32 Ohm | Weight: 14.1 oz (400g) | Cable lenght: 7.2 ft (2.2m) | Surround sound: 7.1 | Features: Vibration engine, LEDs, detachable cat ears Decent audio with 7.1 surround Size suitable for kids and adults Good microphone… … but it's non-detachable Not the most comfortable SOMIC G951-PINK Gaming Headset Headset Cute Headphones Game Headphones Headphone SOMIC G951-PINK Gaming Headset Headset Cute Headphones Game Headphones Headphone $29.00 in stock Buy now eBay SOMIC G951pink Gaming Headset for PC, PS4, Laptop: 7.1 Virtual Surround Sound Detachable Cat Ear… SOMIC G951pink Gaming Headset for PC, PS4, Laptop: 7.1 Virtual Surround Sound Detachable Cat Ear… $49.99 in stock as of March 24, 2023 8:01 pm Buy now Amazon.com SOMIC G951 Pink Headset for PS4, PC, Laptop USB 7.1 Virtual Surround Sound LED Lightweight Cat… SOMIC G951 Pink Headset for PS4, PC, Laptop USB 7.1 Virtual Surround Sound LED Lightweight Cat… out of stock Buy now Walmart.com These budget cat ear headphones produce a decent audio quality with moderate loudness. As a gaming headset, they also support a 7.1 surround sound solution. As for the design, these are primarily targeted at young girls. Apart from the detachable cat ear, there’s a cute kitty face on both ear cups. The latter have a white LED light built into them, supporting static and breathing effects. You control them using onboard buttons. The built-in boom mic delivers good quality and is a great addition for kids required to school from home. Unlike cat ears, it isn’t detachable. Lastly, earpads are made of faux leather and have a breathable mesh. However, since the pads are smaller, they might feel uncomfortable to adults. 5. Edifier HECATE G2 II The best cat ear headphones for call quality. Redesigned G2 gaming headsets for extra cuteness. Connection: Wired – USB Driver size: 50mm dynamic Frequency range: 20-20.000Hz Type: Over-ear | Back design: Closed-back | Noise cancelling: No | Mic & Controls: Yes | Impedance: 32 Ohm | Weight: 9.38 oz (266g) | Cable lenght: 8.2 ft (2.5m) | Surround sound: 7.1 | Features: Detachable cat ears, RGB Balanced sound signature Excellent detachable microphine Comfortable fit Only for USB connection HECATE by Edifier G2 II Pink Gaming Headset USB Wired Pink Gaming Headphones HECATE by Edifier G2 II Pink Gaming Headset USB Wired Pink Gaming Headphones $52.00 in stock Buy now eBay Edifier HECATE G2 II Gaming Headset – Noise Canceling USB Wired Headphones for PC/MAC/ PS4/ PS5… Edifier HECATE G2 II Gaming Headset – Noise Canceling USB Wired Headphones for PC/MAC/ PS4/ PS5… $59.99 in stock 1 used from $41.92 as of March 24, 2023 5:12 pm Buy now Amazon.com Edifier R1280Ts Powered Bookshelf Speakers – 2.0 Stereo Active Near Field Monitors – Studio… Edifier R1280Ts Powered Bookshelf Speakers – 2.0 Stereo Active Near Field Monitors – Studio… $197.99 in stock Buy now Walmart.com Unlike other cat ear headphones, the HECATE G2 II don’t blast you with bass. Instead, you get a clear audio with very balanced response. While the detail retrieval isn’t outstanding, it should be fine for casual use. Otherwise, these are slightly a redesigned version of the existing G2 model but with detachable cat ears and all-pink color. You can put your own touch on them by using adjustable lighting effects. Earpads are nicely cushioned and should provide a comfortable experience during long listening sessions. As for the detachable microphone, it works amazingly. It will provide more than enough clarity for online gaming and basic streaming needs. 6. Riwbox CT-7S The best wireless cat ear headphones for kids. Choosing the best option for children is hard. The Riwbox are great, they fit perfectly on smaller heads and even limit the volume. Connection: Bluetooth 5.0 Driver size: 40mm Frequency range: 20-20.000Hz Type: On-ear | Battery life: 8 – 10h | Wireless range: 33ft (10m) | Noise cancelling: No | Charging: Micro-USB | Mic & Controls: Yes | Bluetooth codecs: n/a | Water resistance: n/a | Features: 85dB limiter, light effects, 3.5mm port Volume limiter for safe listening Flashy, attractive design Connection problems Audio clarity in these headphones is passable. Most kids are happy just to hear their game or favorite show, so that’s not really a concern. Safe listening is a priority above sonic fidelity, which makes sense given the category The volume buttons can’t push them over 85 decibels. This protects the sensitive hearing of children. It’s a great safety feature that’s a must for kids. Riwbox headphones give another great design. The lights can flash along with the music, perfect for entertaining the youngsters. You can turn this off if you need to. They are wireless but work wired, too. Universal compatibility always comes in handy. The Riwbox Kids Headphones are a good set of safety-conscious cans for kids. 7. Axent Wear New Edition Wireless Cat Ear Headphones Original cat ear headphones. A style statement, as they were intended. A new design from the founders of cat ear headphones with slightly upgraded specs. Connection: Bluetooth & Wired 3.5mm Driver size: n/a Frequency range: n/a Type: Over-ear | Battery life: 30h (LED off), 5h (LED on) | Wireless range: 33ft (10m) | Noise cancelling: No | Charging: 1.5h – quick charge – USB-C | Mic & Controls: Yes | Bluetooth codecs: n/a | Water resistance: No | Features: LED effects, loudspeaker mode Attractive design Included hard-shell carrying case Very bassy sound Loudspeakers aren't the cleanest New Edition Wireless Cat Ear Headphones (12 Color Changing) with Speakers & 3.5mm Jack, Type-C… New Edition Wireless Cat Ear Headphones (12 Color Changing) with Speakers & 3.5mm Jack, Type-C… $113.00 in stock 1 used from $107.35 as of March 24, 2023 8:01 pm Buy now Amazon.com F/S LED Cat Ear Headphone 8 Color AXENT WEAR Bluetooth Ariana Grande NEW japan F/S LED Cat Ear Headphone 8 Color AXENT WEAR Bluetooth Ariana Grande NEW japan out of stock Buy now eBay Headphones produce rich bass audio above anything else, which can muddy other frequencies. Basshead will love them, whereas audio purists should look elsewhere. That’s not all… Cat ears also double as tiny outdoor speakers to share music with your friends. Although, due to their size, don’t expect excellent sound performance. Headphones change colors in 12 different tints and boast 6 effects. On top of that, you get a stable connection with up to 30 hours of battery life. One thing that might turn you away is their weight of 16.2 ounces. That’s noticeably heavy, despite having plush earpads. At least they’re universally compatible with all gadgets (Bluetooth and wired mode). Still, Axent is the original brand behind cat ear headphones, so you should expect good quality. 8. MindKoo Unicat The best value cat ear headphones. These cat ear headphones look great. Even kids will like them. They also have some impressive features, considering the price point. Connection: Bluetooth 5.0 Driver size: n/a Frequency range: 20-20.000Hz Type: Over-ear | Battery life: 70h (lights off), 30h (lights on) | Wireless range: 33ft (10m) | Noise cancelling: No | Charging: Micro-USB | Mic & Controls: Yes | Bluetooth codecs: n/a | Water resistance: No | Features: 3.5mm port, light effects, foldable Affordable Flashy lights with 7 different colors Good battery life May be too big to fit kid's head Not the most durable TY Beanie Boos Baby Soft Heather Unicorn UniCat Plush Stuffed Animal Cat Toy, Multicolour TY Beanie Boos Baby Soft Heather Unicorn UniCat Plush Stuffed Animal Cat Toy, Multicolour $8.94 $15.30 in stock Buy now Walmart.com MindKoo Cat Ear Bluetooth Headphones with Microphone, LED Light Up Over Ear Headphones, Volume… MindKoo Cat Ear Bluetooth Headphones with Microphone, LED Light Up Over Ear Headphones, Volume… $32.99 $49.99 in stock 2 new from $32.99 as of March 25, 2023 1:11 am Buy now Amazon.com The MindKoo headphones may not win many awards for sound quality, but they’re good enough for most people. Not for demanding users, but it has plenty of clarity for gaming and casual listening. Some cat ear headphones neglect vital features as they’re seen as a novelty item. The value of these headphones is their cute design and Bluetooth performance, with the sound as an addition. Fancy LED lights add to the fun of these headphones. They look great. The wireless connectivity is fairly reliable. Battery life of up to 10 hours is also respectable, and you can use the headphones wired if you want. Moreover, them being foldable headphones is a major convenience. Along with a built-in mic for making phone calls. 9. FosPower Kids Headphones The best cat ear headphones for kids. All-around adorable kitty headphones with flashy effects. Connection: Wired – 3.5mm Driver size: 30mm dynamic Frequency range: 20-20.000Hz Type: On-ear | Back design: Closed-back | Noise cancelling: No | Mic & Controls: No | Impedance: 32 Ohm | Weight: n/a | Cable lenght: 4 ft (1.2m) | Features: Volume limit, LED effects Volume limiter (85dB) Flexible construction Braided cable Multiple LED effects… … that require batteries to power No built-in microphone FosPower Wired/Wireless Bluetooth 5.3 Headphones w/LED Light Ears for Kids Girls FosPower Wired/Wireless Bluetooth 5.3 Headphones w/LED Light Ears for Kids Girls $19.99 $44.99 in stock Buy now eBay FosPower Bluetooth Kids Headphones with 3.5mm Audio cable included, LED Light Up Ears, Wireless… FosPower Bluetooth Kids Headphones with 3.5mm Audio cable included, LED Light Up Ears, Wireless… $19.99 $44.99 in stock Buy now Walmart.com FosPower Kids Headphones with LED Light Up Cat Ears 3.5mm On Ear Audio Headphones for Kids with… FosPower Kids Headphones with LED Light Up Cat Ears 3.5mm On Ear Audio Headphones for Kids with… $21.99 $29.99 in stock 6 used from $18.73 as of March 24, 2023 9:11 pm Buy now Amazon.com These are cheap cat ear headphones for kids that will not amaze anyone with audio performance. However, as a parent, you’ll be pleased to know the FosPower headphones have a built-in volume limiter. It’s set to 85dB, which should prevent your kids from blasting their music. The design is pretty simple in construction yet colorful in design. While their on-ear design and small size won’t appeal to adults, they should be relatively comfortable on kids ears. On top of that, headphones are flexible and twistable in all directions without causing any damage to the drivers. Sadly, they don’t come with splashproof protection. 10. iClever Boostcare Basic but durable cat ear headphones for kids. While they lack flashiness, they at least protect your kid’s hearing with 2 volume modes. Connection: Wired – 3.5mm Driver size: n/a Frequency range: n/a Type: On-ear | Back design: Closed-back | Noise cancelling: No | Mic & Controls: Yes | Impedance: n/a | Weight: n/a | Cable lenght: n/a | Features: Volume limiters Durable design with soft silicone Inline remote with a mic 85dB & 94dB volume modes No LED lights Not the best sound quality iClever BoostCare Kids Headphones Wired Over Ear Headphones with Cat Ears 85dB iClever BoostCare Kids Headphones Wired Over Ear Headphones with Cat Ears 85dB $14.49 in stock Buy now eBay iClever Boostcare Kids Headphones with Microphone, 85/94dB Volume Control, Cat Ear Hello Kitty… iClever Boostcare Kids Headphones with Microphone, 85/94dB Volume Control, Cat Ear Hello Kitty… $19.99 in stock 1 used from $13.15 as of March 24, 2023 8:01 pm Buy now Amazon.com Hermitshell Hard Travel Case for iClever BoostCare Kids Headphones Wired Over Ear Headphones with… Hermitshell Hard Travel Case for iClever BoostCare Kids Headphones Wired Over Ear Headphones with… $30.35 in stock Buy now Walmart.com Another kid-friendly headphone but now with 2 volume options: 85dB and 94dB. One mode is for home use, whereas the other is meant for traveling. While the design isn’t as exciting-looking as with FosPower headphones, the iClever kids headphones come in many colors. The in-line controls let you navigate playback and answer phone calls. Furthermore, they’re equally as flexible and extremely durable. Cat ears, despite pointy, are made of soft food-grade silicone, so you shouldn’t be afraid of your kids hurting themselves over sharp plastic. On-ear fit and small-sized ear cups don’t scream comfort. But then again, you don’t want your kid to listen to music all day long. 11. Brookstone Wired Cat Ear Headphones The best original cat ear headphones. The only Brookstone cat ear headphones that are still selling on Amazon. Connection: Wired – 3.5mm Driver size: 40mm Frequency range: 20-20.000Hz Type: Over-ear | Back design: Closed-back | Noise cancelling: No | Mic & Controls: Yes | Impedance: 32 Ohm | Weight: n/a | Cable lenght: n/a | Features: Detachable gaming mic, external speakers Good passive isolation Decent sound quality Cat ears doubles as external speakers … which aren't very good Slightly heavy They have a decent enough fidelity and are acceptable for gaming, with powerful 40mm drivers. For an average user, you’ll enjoy your music. If you’re more demanding, you’ll have to look elsewhere. If you don’t mind the cable, you get many of the same features as the wireless model (which isn’t selling anymore). Plus, you can use them as a gaming headset (with a detachable boom mic). These wired headphones also have external speakers to complement the Neko headphones design. You can change the color easily, and it’s controlled separately from the speaker. You can use inline controls for the volume, and there is also a detachable microphone. The cute headphones are popular among gamers and streamers for their unique design (and microphone quality). Can You Add Cat Ears to Headphones? Of course, nowadays, you don’t have to explicitly buy cat ear headphones. You can decorate your existing regular headphones with attachable cat ears. Here are the best options. Razer Kitty Ears for Kraken Headsets $16.19 at eBay $19.99 at Amazon.com $39.83 at Walmart.com WeThinkeer Pink Kitty Ears $12.89 at Amazon.com $13.99 at Walmart.com $20.60 at eBay SplashNcolor Cat Ear Headphone Attachment $4.02 at Walmart.com $24.99 at Amazon.com REEYEAR Kitty Ears for HyperX Headsets $11.99 at Amazon.com What Are Cat Ear Headphones? Quite simply, cat ear headphones (or kitty ear headphones) are headphones with, you guessed it, cat ears. However, not all cat ear headphones are the same. Some use ears only for decorative purposes, whereas some ears light up or even double as small speakers. Why Are Cat Ear Headphones So Popular? Kitty & cat cosplayers Cat ear headphones are primarily popular among otaku (people of all age groups that are interested in anime culture and entertainment). While some wear cat ear headphones because they’re cute, some also use them as an addition to their cosplay outfit. If you ever visit a gaming or anime convention, you’ll surely see at least a few people wearing cat ears. Streamers and celebrities In recent years, cat ears have become very popular among streamers. Some wear them because they’re kawaii (adorable, cute), whereas others use them for fun (popular YouTuber PewDiePie being the most famous example). Source: YouTube Furthermore, Ariana Grande, a famous pop singer, also brought some attention to the new headphone design. Beforehand, she used to wear big bunny and cat ears on stage and social media. Therefore, it was only logical for Brookstone to team up with her in 2016. The result of the partnership was signature Ariana cat ear headphones. Ariana Grande with her famous cat ear headphones. A Short History of Kemonomimi Throughout history, people loved imagining humans with animal characteristics, from Greek mythology to modern fantasy stories, comics, and manga. In Japan, kemonomimi describes a female with cat-like features (cat ears, tail). First mentions of characters with nekomimi (neko = cat, mimi = ears) date back to the 1700s. Source: Wikipedia However, you can find the first modern version of a “beautiful girl with cat ears” in 1924’s “Suisenzuki no Yokka” by Kenji Miyazawa. After that, much more manga and anime adopted the catgirl form. The Beginning of Cat Ear Headphones The idea about cat headphones was first born in 2014. An anime artist Wenqing Yan saw the opportunity, created a company called Axent Wear, and launched an Indiegogo campaign with her friend and co-founder Victoria Hu. The cat ear headphones are close to becoming a reality! More info here http://t.co/TDRkIK1vQE pic.twitter.com/4UL6W9yMbi— Wenqing Yan (@Yuumei_Art) May 9, 2014 The campaign surpassed their expectations, collecting $3,429,046 in funding. After a huge success, the cat ear headphones could finally become a reality. However, a ride to the final product was (allegedly) quite bumpy. Design by: Wenqing Yan Firstly, Victoria Hu, who set manufacturing to mass-produce the headphones, didn’t care about the quality of the work environment. Instead, workers were placed in a horrible sweatshop, some even exposed to breathing lead. Read a full Wenqing Yan blog post. After unsuccessful reasoning with her friend (which resulted in a legal battle), Yan searched for other partners to produce her cat ear headphones. When the company called Brookstone learned about the dispute between the two founders, they reached out to Yan and offered to produce her headphones on a large scale. Original wireless Brookstone Cat Ear Headphones. However, due to limited capacity and budget, many cat ear headphones turned out faulty or were sent back by users, which isn’t good for business. Meanwhile, other brands saw the opportunity and started producing their own cat ear headphones market. The most famous ones are Razer Kraken Kitty Edition. Razer Kraken BT Kitty Edition | World Learns to Meow What Makes the Best Cat Ear Headphones? Design Apart from technical performance and overall comfort, users also want to find cat ear headphones that express their personality. That’s why it’s important to think about design. In the case of cat ear headphones, the cuter, the better. However, many of them also pack additional functionalities and the latest features. Car ears can be: purely decorativeor they can illuminate in different RGB colors and effects Some ears also double as tiny extra speakers so that you can share music with friends. The RGB lighting is usually found somewhere on earcups, as well. Color changes when you use a button, a mobile phone, or PC app. Since cat ear headphones are all about flashy design, some offer a feature to sync music with LED lighting effects. That looks especially cool if a headphone doubles as speaker cat ears. Comfort The second most important part is how comfortable the headphones are. If you’re streaming or have them as a part of your cosplay, you’ll be wearing them for long hours. Therefore, look for over-ear headphones that go around your ears. And if you opt for an on-ear model, try to find the one with super plush memory foam ear pads. Look for cat ear headphones with an ergonomic design. Furthermore, comfort depends on the clamping force, weight, and adjustability. For the clamping force, you don’t want it to be extremely soft or too firm. If it’s the latter, you can always put headphones between a few books and leave them there for a while to loosen the grip. Weight-wise, the lighter, the better. Around 8.8 ounces is a perfect weight. Lightweight headphones aren’t necessarily the cheapest made. Also, by keeping the weight down, you won’t feel them pressing on your head as much. As for the adjustability, look for headphones with rotatable earcups in all directions, big enough headband extension for larger heads, and the possibility of replacing earpads when they become stiff. Finally, you also have to consider size, especially if you’re looking to get cat ear headphones for your kid. In that case, make sure to search for smaller ones. Bigger cans are likely to slide right off their heads. Sound Quality It’s worth pointing out that great audio performance isn’t the main focus of cat ear headphones. Meaning they aren’t going to please the audiophile in you. On the other hand, you shouldn’t completely skimp on sound. They should still play your favorite songs just the way you like them. Browse through reviews and look for cat ear headphones with as accurate and clear sound as possible. You don’t want overly boosted bass response and piercing treble to ruin your listening experience. Other features you might want to consider are: Noise cancellation While most headphones trust passive outside noise isolation to keep the surrounding noise out, some use a computer algorithm to reduce it actively. The results are usually much better than with passive isolation. The latter struggles with lower frequencies, whereas even cheap ANC headphones can easily reduce them. Active noise cancellation is perfect for noisy places where you want some peace, like working near a construction site, in a loud office, or during commuting. Also, ANC can protect your hearing since you don’t have to raise the volume to overtake the ambient noise. However, that could also be dangerous if you plan to use ANC near busy roads since you will not hear passing cars. Moreover, in many cases, ANC interferes with sound quality. It can go both ways, good or bad. Some headphones are specially tuned to work best with ANC enabled. So, if you plan to use it non-stop, make sure to buy the ones with a dedicated tuning. Volume limits Kids love cute things, so they might want to have one of those cat ear headphones themselves. Thankfully, they’re making cat ear headphones for kids as well. And the best thing… They have volume limits built-in. Meaning the volume shouldn’t go past certain sound levels. The most common limitation is 85dB. That way, your kids aren’t able to blast their music too loud, which protects their hearing in the long run. If you don’t find headphones with a volume limit, try to follow the 60/60 rule: 60 minutes of listening at 60% volume, then take a little break. Virtual surround sound Since cat ear headphones are popular among streamers, many offer similar features as gaming headphones. Unlike regular stereo sound, some offer dedicated virtual surround sound modes. This feature essentially enlarges the perception of the soundstage, placing sounds further away from you. If it’s done correctly, it adds to the immersion. Be aware that you don’t have to buy dedicated surround sound headphones to get the spatial audio performance. If you own a Windows PC or Xbox, enabling Windows Sonic for Headphones does a similar thing. Connection You can pick between various connection options. Wired ones consist of: USB connection is mainly reserved for gaming headsets since they allow you to pair with PC apps, enable surround sound features, and provide power for RGB effects.In contrast, the 3.5mm jack is far more popular due to its wide compatibility. Wireless ones consist of: Bluetooth connection is the most widespread technology for headphones. It allows for complete freedom of movement and features like multipoint. Many Bluetooth headphones are also packed with extra goodies like ANC and ambient sound mode to amplify the background noise. And if your battery dies, most of them offer wired connectivity.Wireless 2.4GHz connection via a USB dongle is mainly found in PC gaming headsets. Compared to Bluetooth, a regular Wi-Fi connection provides better audio latency, which is of utmost importance for gamers. On the flip side, dedicated PS5 or Xbox Series X wireless headphones can easily connect directly to these two gaming consoles without any dongle. Durability Manufacturers always battle between durability and comfort while keeping the headphones at a reasonable price. You have to keep in mind that: cheaper is usually less durable, so you’ll have to pay a bit more for extra ruggedness. Still, be cautious when buying your new cat ear headphones, even if you’re paying more than $100. Always check professional and user reviews. A few bad reviews don’t necessarily mean a bad product. However, if most of them talk about the poor quality, you should definitely avoid buying those headphones. How to Pick the Best Cat Headphones with a Microphone? You might want to use your brand-new cat headphones to make phone or video calls. While most come with an included microphone, the quality varies. Where Will You Make Calls? The environment you’ll be making calls is of great importance. Most microphones do a good-enough job in quiet places with no surrounding interferences.However, if you already know you’ll be using them someplace loud, consider a microphone with ANC technology. Is ANC Technology for Calls Important? Yes, if you plan to make calls in a noisy environment. Otherwise, don’t pay too much attention to that. Overly aggressive ANC for calls can sometimes worsen voice quality by introducing distortion. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) How do I turn off lights on my cat ear headphones? If your cat ear headphones connect with an app, try finding the setting inside of it. Or look for a dedicated button somewhere on the earcups or audio cable. Of course, browsing through a user guide should provide you with the answers specific to your headphones. How do you pair Brookstone Wireless Cat Ear Headphones? The first time you turn them on, they should start pairing immediately. However, if you want to pair them to another device, press & hold the Bluetooth button until the built-in LED starts blinking. Are there noise cancelling cat ear headphones? Unfortunately, none of the best ones have the feature. While some have “noise cancelling” written in their descriptions, they’re actually referring to passive noise isolation.