I’m not really into the gift-advice business, but this review was published last year before I was blogging so I don’t think I ever had a chance to point it out. I’ve been using the Koss PortaPros a lot lately, and I still can’t believe how fantastic they are for the price. They’re not great walking-around headphones – their open-ear design lets a lot of outside noise in – but if you’re looking for something for a high-quality pair of headphones to pair with your computer, I’d recommend these without qualification. From the review:
These headphones are not new. Koss created the PortraPro Stereophones in the mid-1980s, and from an aesthetic standpoint they are distinctly of their time. (They look like rejected Tron props.) But those who can stomach (or even embrace?) the unique look will discover why the PortaPros continue to sell: they’re comfortable, sound great, and—here’s the kicker—they’re cheap, too. There simply are no other cans in the under-$50 market that deliver sound like this: crisp, rich, detailed. And Koss offers a lifetime no-questions-asked warranty, so if you happen to trod on them on a late-night bathroom run (as I did), you can get them replaced for only the cost of shipping. Bottom line: If you’re looking for a gift for the discriminating listener, but don’t feel like stretching your wallet, you can’t go wrong with these.