head·​phone ˈhed-ˌfōn How to pronounce headphone (audio)
plural headphones
: an earphone held over the ear by a band worn on the head
usually plural
So for the gamer to gain that "edge," he must have the best mouse, the smoothest mouse pad or the most sensitive headphones.Chris Yong
Strapping on cushy headphones the size of loaves of bread, I'd repeatedly listen to Mingus' "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat" and the music of artists such as Jelly Roll Morton and Billie Holiday.Robert Wilder
also : a small earphone inserted into the ear : earbud
in-ear headphones

Examples of headphone in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Maggie is also a professional gear tester, testing hundreds of items on the trail each year, from hiking shoes to headphones to protein bars. Maggie Slepian, Travel + Leisure, 9 Feb. 2024 This device is a serious game-changer for your travel experience, providing the freedom to enjoy high-quality audio with your preferred wireless headphones. Jessica Copeland, Rolling Stone, 7 Feb. 2024 The final result sounded good on my reference monitors, on my ATH-M50 headphones, and even on some terrible laptop speakers. Nate Anderson, Ars Technica, 6 Feb. 2024 OnePlus Buds 3 App Experience Like Apple, OnePlus builds headphone controls directly into the menu system of its phones. PCMAG, 5 Feb. 2024 Advertisement Under the guidance of mental preparation consultants, UCLA players start every practice and pregame routine by putting on headphones to listen to instrumental music. Thuc Nhi Nguyen, Los Angeles Times, 4 Feb. 2024 The problem is that the NFL’s headphones sponsor is Bose, not Beats by Dre. Kaepernick endorses Beats by Dre, including in a commercial last year. Matt Barrows, Sacramento Bee, 31 Jan. 2024 Thanks to a recent update of its iOS app, Shazam can now detect any song playing through your headphones. Boone Ashworth, WIRED, 27 Jan. 2024 The lie-flat seats have high-quality speakers built directly into the headrests, eliminating the need to worry about headphones. Jessica Puckett, Condé Nast Traveler, 26 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'headphone.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1908, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of headphone was in 1908

Dictionary Entries Near headphone

Cite this Entry

“Headphone.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/headphone. Accessed 23 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


head·​phone ˈhed-ˌfōn How to pronounce headphone (audio)
: an earphone held over the ear by a band worn on the head
usually used in plural

More from Merriam-Webster on headphone

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