Samson SR850 Review: WORTH IT in 2024?

Odi Productions Mar 19, 2024
23 People Read
Samson SR850 Headphones Box

Disclosure: Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you if you decide to purchase. 

Here is my HONEST Samson SR850 review for those who are wondering if they're any good or still worth it in 2024. These headphones were crowned as the best headphones under $50 back in the day. To be honest, there isn’t much competition in this price range, but I’m proud to admit that this little gem stacks up with headphones costing 2 to 3 times as much, and even more! Stay tuned for an in-depth review.

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Order the Samson SR850 HERE for the LOWEST PRICE AVAILABLE (Do NOT pay retail): 

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1. Features

Now I’m just gonna go over the features of these headphones real quick, which are listed at the back of the box.

- Open ear design for enhanced ambient listening: this basically means that these are open-back headphones, as opposed to closed-back. Overall, open-back headphones do sound better in terms of soundstage and accurate high-frequency response when compared to closed-back headphones, but they also tend to leak a little more sound.

- Now one of the biggest features of these headphones are the 50mm drivers, which are pretty big when compared to the majority of headphones. Just for reference, the Beats Studio 2.0’s that came out in 2013 use 40mm, drivers. Generally speaking, the size of the driver is comparable to the size of a subwoofer. A bigger size usually means it can reach the lower frequencies more easily.

- It says that these headphones have a frequency response of 10 Hz to 30 kHz, which is a bit of a marketing gimmick, considering that the human ear can only really hear sounds from 20 Hz to 20 kHz. Regardless, these headphones do have a very impressive frequency response, especially with how detailed the lower bass frequencies come through, most likely due to the massive 50mm drivers.

- 32 Ohms of impedance is actually a very beneficial feature, which basically means that these headphones don’t require a lot of juice to power, so you can listen from your mobile phone or laptop and enjoy full quality sound. Headphones with higher impedance require more power to get up to volume, and this can be annoying when having to turn the volume up on your device, just to get it to a listenable level.

- The self-adjusting headband does indeed provide a secure, comfortable fit, and is most likely borrowed from the legendary AKG K240s, which features the same headband, not to mention that both headphones look extremely similar in general.

- Lastly, these headphones come with a 1/8 inch to 1/4 inch adapter, which lets you plug these directly into an audio interface if you have one. The 1/8 inch plug is the regular size which fits into laptops, mobile phones, and most other devices.

Opening up the box for the first time, these do come with a 1 year warranty which is nice considering that even though they’re just 50 bucks, you’ll be taken care of in case anything happens. As you can see, the packaging is about as nice as it gets for budget headphones, and they come with the 1/4 inch adapter already screwed on. The cord is pretty long at 10 feet, but this is standard for studio headphones so that you can move around freely.

2. Build Quality

Now at this price range, you’re going to have to sacrifice something and build quality is probably the weakest point of these headphones. They’re made of plastic like most other headphones under 200 bucks. With that said, the build quality is not terrible and I’m not really worried about these breaking at all, considering that I just keep these around the house. If you’re looking for a pair of headphones to throw into a backpack and travel with often, I would probably look elsewhere.

3. Comfort

Moving onto comfort, this is a category where the Samson SR850s do shine. Judging by the design, it’s pretty obvious these are modeled after the AKG K240s, which I consider to be the most comfortable studio headphones period. The Samson’s feature the same self-adjusting headband, which applies virtually zero pressure on the top of the head, unlike a lot of other headphones.

Also, the earcups feature a “velour” material which is similar to felt or velvet, and I think this material is superior to the leather and fake leather on most other headphones, mainly because these don’t sweat as much. Also, since these are open-back headphones, I find that my ears breathe a bit better compared to closed-back, which usually cause my ears to sweat if worn for 45 minutes to an hour or so.

If there was one uncomfortable part of these headphones, I’d say it’s because the earcups are not an oval shape but a circle, so they don’t exactly form around your ear. Also, they clamp down a little bit on the sides of your head but not nearly as much as other headphones.

4. Sound

Now for the category that most of you have been waiting for… the sound. Frankly, these headphones sound amazing for the price. As a professional music producer and audio engineer, I would’ve never believed that budget headphones could sound this good, considering I’ve used a lot of the higher-end studio headphones like the popular Audio Technica ATH-M50s.

What impresses me the most is the bass response. These headphones go down to the lowest frequencies and the bass is clean and detailed with a good amount of punch. I’d say the most common problem with studio headphones in general is usually either too weak or too muddy bass response, but that problem is nonexistent here.

Now these aren’t the most accurate headphones since they are hyped in the bass and high frequencies, but they are very fun and pleasant headphones to listen to. My only knock is that the high frequencies can be a little bit harsh sometimes. Overall, if you listen to modern music like hip-hop, pop, and EDM, these headphones will sound great.

Is the Samson SR850 still good or worth it?

Bottom line, these headphones are an incredible bang for the buck. They are very comfortable and the sound quality easily matches up with headphones costing much more.

Judging on sound alone, these headphones sound about 90% similar to the Beats Studio 2.0’s which came out in 2013, not bad for headphones that cost about a fifth of the price. They are both “fun” headphones to listen to, as opposed to accurate, and they both excel mostly in the bass department, with the Beats Studios having a punchier bass response.

From a professional standpoint, you could definitely use these headphones for recording, producing, and just plain listening to music. For 50 bucks, you really can’t beat it!

If you’re interested in getting a deal on the Samson SR850s, click the link below to where you can order these for the cheapest price available.

Order the Samson SR850 HERE for the LOWEST PRICE AVAILABLE (Do NOT pay retail): 

Disclosure: These links may provide a discount and in return, give us a commission in order to run the website 🙂

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Samson a good brand of headphones?

Yes, Samson is a good brand known for making studio equipment like microphones and headphones as well.

What is the competitor of the Samson SR850?

The Samson SR850 headphones are known to be almost identical to the Superlux HD681B headphones, and some say they are simply a "rebranded" version.

Are the Samson SR850 open or closed headphones?

The Samson SR850 headphones feature a semi-open back design, as opposed to closed. The semi-open back design will naturally leak sound as opposed to closed-back headphones.

How many ohms are Samson SR850?

The Samson SR850 headphones have 32 Ohms of impedance and are fairly easy to drive to listenable volumes.

How We Tested and Our Methodology is a 100% independent publisher with over 10 years of experience testing and reviewing consumer electronics and headphones.

We currently purchase the products we test with our own money, and are not paid by any company or manufacturer to influence our opinions or decisions.

After purchasing the product, we conduct up to hundreds of hours of detailed hands-on testing in a controlled, acoustically-treated environment.

ODi Productions is our resident expert and author of this article, with 10 years of experience as a professional music producer, tech journalist, and audiophile.

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Disclosure:  Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you if you decide to purchase.