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Sennheiser HD650 Mini-Review

Really HD? It's Headphones Week at AudioFanzine and this Sennheiser HD650 review is the first one in a series of five reviews. Five different headphones will be reviewed by three of our editors, Los Teignos, Red Led and Will ZĂ©gal. read more…

User reviews on Sennheiser HD products

Excellent headphones (Sennheiser - HD 650)

By miuzik, 04/03/2014
I use them for everything (mixing, listening, etc.)
They fit nicely and are very comfortable, although maybe a bit heavy after a couple of hours.
The ear cushions have a tendency to get squashed a bit with time (2-3 years)

Very solid, I've dropped them a couple of times by accident and nothing has happened to them.
The cable can be unplugged and, if needed, it can easily be found as a spare part.
I haven't noticed any sound degradation with time.

Great sound, the best I've heard up to now.

I've used them for several years and I love their neutral and deep sound. Their price (around $400) is justified. I would buy them again without hesitation. Great sound, the best I've heard so far.
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Pro! (Sennheiser - HD 650)

By YuriW, 21/07/2014
I make soundtracks for videogames, and wanted a headphone good enough to mix my projects with when I'm not at home and to use as a second reference for my monitors when I am. A friend of mine gave me the best recommendations about the Sennheiser HD 650, let me borrow it for a couple days and I was totally convinced after that.

It comes in a big and nice box with foam enough to keep it safe in case of falling or being hit by anything (you never know). The headphone's grey color is discrete and good looking, it is easy to adjust to your head and is very, very comfortable to use, even for long periods of work: that's because the phone's headband padding quite cleverly has a space in the middle, so it never presses the top your head. Also, its earpads are pretty big and stay around your ears, not agaisnt them. It's and open-back model, so the sound isolation is not so great, but good enough anyway.

The sound quality of this headphone is outstanding. The bass is full and round, mids and highs are very clear, transient response is excellent. You can totally trust it if you want your mixes to translate well to other systems: stereo, tv, car, etc.

It might be only my impression, but to me it sounds like the stereo image is a little bit narrower than some other ones I've used. Nothing that will make your work any worse - I don't even think that this is bad, to be honest - but it might be something you'll notice in an A/B comparison.

The only thing I don't really like about it is that the cable is way too long... it might be a good thing maybe for a studio, but in my case I just don't need it.

So, lastly, I can say that the HD650 is definitely not cheap, but absolutely worth it. I would buy another one without thinking twice.
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Outstanding! Even in 2014 (Sennheiser - HD 540)

By nan3200, 23/10/2014
After 25 years!
I tested some stax, beyer, audio technica, the famous jecklin float, the akg k240 monitor, but I fell for the HD540 Reference.
Back then I feared they would be too fragile.
But I'm more confident now.
Although I have always taken good care of them.

They are a true gem, and they need some care, they are hard to find in good shape and at a reasonable price.


USE AND DESIGN

Light, smooth.
The foams are hard to find, although those of the HD560 are supposed to fit them too (I've never tried it).
The cables and internal foams can still be found as spare parts.


STURDINESS

Mine are from 1989 and nothing (except for the ear cushions) has ever broken, so, yes!!!
They are sturdy


AUDIO QUALITY

They sound superbly.
Very well-balanced.
That said, be careful, because they are 600-Ohms headphones, so you need quite some power to drive them.
They will sound dull, lifeless and without depth with many basic headphone jacks, so they might disappoint you.

You need to know what you want.
These headphones are fantastic IF you can make the best of them, meaning you have the right gear to amplify them correctly.

In which case they sound pristine, delicate, chiseled.
But also merciless!
It's not a good idea to hear questionable MP3s with them.
It won't be a pleasant experience.

These are headphones that must be earned and they deserve the best.
Not at all the type that will settle for the bare minimum.

Don't buy these headphones to plug them into a smartphone or iThingy.
They really needs more.

One last remark: These are my only headphones I have never modified.
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HD600 : A very capable headphone (Sennheiser - HD 600)

By Blue Xrysalis, 29/08/2016
I recently tested the HD600 alongside the HD650, HD700 and HD800 all by Sennheiser.

I have since purchased the HD600 for my studio, where I use them for mixing tracks, and for mastering. I do all my mixing and mastering on speakers, but a good set of open back headphones gives a different perspective on a mix.

The comparison was done on a decent D/A converter with a good headphone amp. I listened to different styles of music ranging from , Jazz, Classical, Electronic, Rock and Metal as well as acoustic guitar and vocals.

I have to say the top headphone by far in every possible respect was the HD800. It had an amazing 3D soundstage where you could locate every instrument. Excellent frequency response from lows to highs with a solid but not overpowering bass. In fact it felt like I was listening to a set of high end speakers.

The biggest disappointment out of the 4 headphones tested was the HD700, it sounded very shrill in the high end, and that was enough to put me off testing it further.

Then came the HD650 which has very good imaging, not quite like the HD800 but excellent none the less. It's bass was very solid and clear, but the big downfall of these headphones in my opinion were the highs... they seem to have vanished when listening to acoustic guitar, which sounded like something other than an acoustic guitar through the HD650s. That alone put me off these phones. But, Metal and Rock sounded great through them as well as Electronic Music, mainly because of the great low end response.

Now to the HD600s. I was wishing I had the money to buy the HD800s but alas not at the moment, so I tested the HD600s thoroughly on all types of material. The first thing that became evident was that the HD600s had quite an even frequency response. The acoustic instruments sounded very real over the entire frequency spectrum. These phones sounded good on most material even on Metal, the top end was clear and crisp without being harsh. The bottom end was detailed and clear without being overpowering. Compared to the HD650 low end the HD600s are a little less pronounced, but still clear. In terms of the high end, the HD600s sounded far more natural to my ears than did the HD650s.

Comparing the imaging of the HD600s to the HD800 and HD650, the HD600s were not as wide as either of the other two phones, but still had a decent sound stage.

Comfort wise, the HD600 and HD650 were pretty much identical and felt perfect, and compared to the HD800, I found the 600s to be a better fit for my head. The HD800s might be better suited for people with larger heads than mine, and felt a little loose to me.

In terms of headphone distortion, the HD800s provided the purest audio of any of the 4 headphones I tested, with the HD650 coming next, and the HD600 following closely behind that. So the HD600 sounded very smooth to my ears but the other two were slightly smoother in sound quality.

Overall weighing up the price /performance of the 4 headphones, the HD600s were perfect for my needs and are an excellent headphone and for $333US new, a great deal.

I am using these in-studio with Waves Nx room modelling plugin with head tracking, which makes the headphones sound like you're listening to speakers, thus drastically imrpoving the imaging. I've also added Sonarworks Reference 3 headphone calibration software to my DAW which balances out the headphone frequency response, thus improving the bass response as well as evening out any frequency peaks or dips in overall response.

The HD600 headphones sound amazing through this system, and give me the ability to mix whole tracks entirely on headphones when I'm travelling and haven't got access to a full studio.

I'd definitely recommend the HD600s to anyone who's doing studio work and doesn't want to mortgage their house, but if I had more money to spend I would have definitely gone for the HD800s....... Maybe one day...

As for the HD600's 4 star rating, the HD800 would get the full 5 stars, but in this respect the top of the bar was set very high, and in comparison the HD600's did very well in my opinion.
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