Well, I received my Denon D600 last yesterday and did some comparisons between that, the HP-100 and my MDR-MA900.
I will just briefly touch on the D600's packaging, it is quite nice. It reminds me of some higher-end headphone packaging I have seen. However, I can't speak for anyone else, but when I take a headphone out of it's packaging, I don't mess with it again unless I either return the headphones or sell them. So, while nice packaging is good to see, it's not that important to me.
What is important is the sound. I performed my tests with my Foobar 2000 (FLAC) - ODAC - Burson Soloist setup. Yeah, the Soloist is probably overkill for headphones in this price range but I have the amp and I'm gonna use it!
*Note* - I bought the D600s used, so I am assuming that they already have some hours on them and don't plan on doing any burn-in sessions.
I'm not going to give a detailed breakdown - just my overall impressions.
D600 - Warm, bassy with unrefined highs and slightly recessed mids/vocals. The thunderous bass tries to steal the show here, saying "PAY ATTENTION TO ME!". The soundstage feels big but indistinct, I believe this is due to the cavernous ear cups.
Compared to the HP100 - the D600 doesn't impress me very much. I feel the HP100 pretty much beats the D600 in every category except for soundstage size, maybe. That's not to say the D600 isn't a good headphone. I would categorize it as a fun-sounding headphone. I think the sound signature definitely leans towards a warmer, bassier sound. The HP100s to me are more refined, with greater detail and more neutral sound signature. I prefer the HP100s soundstage and imaging as well. The D600s soundstage may be bigger, but it feels congested at times.
Compared to the MA900s - there is no contest here honestly. I know the MA900 is an open headphone, but it shares a similar price to the HP100 and the used D600. Basically, the MA900 puts the D600 to shame. The MA900 sounds much more refined than the D600. There is no hint of congestion or peakiness in the highs on the MA900. They maintain fantastic clarity and separation even when things get busy. The bass of the MA900, while not extending as deep as the D600s or HP100s, is tight, detailed and satisfying. It goes without saying that the soundstage and imaging on the MA900 bests the D600's.
So, needless to say, I am not very impressed with the D600s. Comparing retail prices, I feel that the HP100 and MA900 at 1/2 the price outperform the D600 in pretty much every category. I still consider the HP100 to be one of the best closed headphones available, especially in this price range. I have owned the MA900 for a few months now and it's sound still impresses me. I feel it outperforms many other open headphones I have heard in this price range.
As of now, the HP100s and MA900s are my closed and open headphones of choice. I have been through dozens and dozens of pairs over the years and I finally feel that I have the headphones I have been looking for. Of course, if the past is any indication, this is subject to change.
The best news here is the Soundmagic go DEEP with the bass..........................that's the only thing I thought they lacked from reading a couple of reviews.
And by the way, you can get D600's mostly all the time for $240ish so the price point is a lot closer than the MSRP.
Thanks for the info!