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Sennheiser HD558 + Amp or HD598 for Rock Music Listening and Gaming

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hey all,


I'm fairly new to the audiophile world. I've been rocking a crappy headset for gaming (Razer Carcharias...man these things are horrid haha) and some old Sony MDR-V600's for music, and I just think it's time for an upgrade. I have a Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Sound Card in my PC, but I know a good sound card is useless if the output devices are crap, haha.


With the research I've done from reading a bit around here, and it seems the Sennheiser HD558 and the HD598 are popular picks for what I'm wanting to do, so I narrowed it down to those two. My question is though would saving a bit and getting the HD558 and an amp be better than just getting the HD598? I am not too knowledgeable about amps, so would having one make that much of a difference with my current sound card? Also I may want to bring these around when I travel, but I don't want to worry about that right now. My budget is around $150-200, so I won't be able to afford to get an amp with the HD598. frown.gif


As these are of course not a headset, I would like a good mic as well. Are there any fairly inexpensive favorites?


I'm basing my prices off of these Electronic Expo deals using the coupon code "TECHBARGAINS" or "BENSBARGAINS": biggrin.gif


http://www.electronics-expo.com/sennheiser-hd-598-open-circumaural-headphones-beige (comes to $168)

http://www.electronics-expo.com/sennheiser-hd-558-open-circumaural-headphones (comes to $124) (I know these are out of stock but I can wait/search around for a similar price)


If you have any other suggestions they are more than welcome. Also if I'm getting myself into too much from the start please say so, haha!




Edited by Squirrely - 1/9/12 at 9:32am
post #2 of 9

Sennheiser have the PC350/360, which are fine headsets for gaming. I own the 350's and im pleased with them. Im thinking to upgrade to the 360's soon. 


Edit: do you want 2 separate sets, Or just want one for everything? (music/gaming)

Edited by jackwess - 1/9/12 at 9:55am
post #3 of 9

The 558s and 598s are just newer versions of 555s and 595s right?


Can't say for sure that this is still the case, but back when it was between 555s and 595s, I would always recommend the 555s since they have the same driver as the 595 and in fact, the only real difference was a piece of foam that Sennheiser stuck in the 555 which could easily be removed.


The 595 was more expensive simply because it looked nicer, I think. It had leather and simply looked a little more luxurious.


I would imagine that the above still holds true when comparing the 558 against the 598.



Furthermore, I don't know if it's worth spending money on an amp for a 558 as it will be a noticable upgrade from what you have without an amp. With that said, if you do get a decent amp for it, you'll at least be prepared for a few years down the line when you decide to upgrade your 558s to maybe an HD 600 or HD 650 (or some other higher-end cans outside of the Sennheiser brand).


Good luck!


(for what it's worth, I had 555s without an amp for 5 years and then bough myself HD 600s with an E9/E7 AMP/DAC combo)

post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the suggestion! Yeah, I did some research on those as well. It's not that I am trying to avoid headsets, but I'd rather have a really solid pair of headphones, and then just add on a mic for the gaming/VoIP I do. 


I've seen them being touted as the best sounding headset from a couple sources. (read a thread on here  which reviewed headphones for gaming) Though the thing is even though they are the best sounding headset, do they compare to a solid pair of headphones?


post #5 of 9

It's probably fair to say that most good headphones will sound better than good headsets.

post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by blama View Post

It's probably fair to say that most good headphones will sound better than good headsets.

Very true. But I actually just bit the bullet and got some HD598's. :D If I want to improve it further I can always wait a bit and get the FIIO e17 when it comes out and try that.

post #7 of 9

I have headphone amps and expensive dacs.  also had quite a few headphones.  I really enjoy the hd598.  They are not the best at detail retrieval.  That is a good thing though.  The reason being is because most people listen to mp3.  I do more than my higher quality music.  It's just to hard and expensive to get all your music in high quality and some of it just isn't possible.  Because the HD598's aren't the best at detail retrieval they make the analog that it does pick up sound full.  The high's on the 598 are above all else i've had on any headphone.  They unfortunately are not that great for ALL gaming.  They do work good but if you're playing hardcore call of duty with dolby surround, then i have heard better (d2000.) The position ques are a little out of place and you have to try to listen for footsteps.  They don't just spring at you like some other headphones do.  You do not need an extra amp for these headphones unless they don't get loud enough for you.  I run them with a Schiit Asgard and it is absolutely not needed. If the headphone had more detail to it then maybe i would consider it but it doesn't.  These headphones really don't benefit from an amp other than being able to play louder.  I would however suggest maybe getting a better dac in the future but i would be willing to bet that yours is just fine.

post #8 of 9

If your budget is limited, don't even bother with an amp, as it's not needed in this case. Seriously if you can get the HD598's for $168, do it.


Edit: Dang it Docta! lol

Edited by SgtPepper - 6/12/12 at 7:08pm
post #9 of 9


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