How long should headphones last?

I usually buy a new pair of Sony headphones every 5 or 6 months. I usually just use them to listen music or news on my computer an hour or two a day. Eventually one side’s speaker will start to “buzz” a bit and then go silent, and I get another pair.

Are headphones supposed to be this disposable? I play music a little too loud, but not at full volume. If they should last for a few years, I am probably just blasting my eardrums to hell…

Probably quite a bit of overdriving going on. Most people tend to listen to music through headphones at far too high a level for hearing safety. Your ears tend to adjust to a slightly uncomfortable volume level, so you tend to to increase the level to compensate. You shouldn’t do that. Set the level to a comfortable listening level, and leave it there. It doesn’t take much to damage hearing.

From this site.

From this site.

Oh, and I forgot to make it clear that, yes, overdriving headphones will shorten their life span, which I’ve found from experience to be between 1-2 years for mid-priced units and less than a year for cheaper ones, given normal wear and tear.

Mine normally last 6 months or so too, but I always get cheap ones.