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An upgrade to the HD 598

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

I'm looking for an upgrade to these headphones. I want: 

1) Even better sound stage. I already think the 598s have an incredible sound stage but I'm looking for something EVEN better. For reference, I thought the Q701s had a somewhat unrealistic soundstage. 

2) Neutral sound; I want to hear the recording as it was intended. However, I don't mind the bass to be SLIGHTLY emphasized. I always felt that headphones have to compensate for the way our body naturally takes in bass sound through our body cavities when music is heard live. 

3) Clarity. If there is one thing I wanted from the 598s, it would be clarity. 

 

Btw, just out of curiosity, how do these compare with the Denons and Beyerdynamics in terms of midrange and treble? What's the difference? I've heard these but never compared them side by side, which is obviously crucial in accurately observing the differences. I'm guessing the difference is clarity and timbre accuracy... 

post #2 of 13

What is your budget? If you have $400, I'd go with the he400 no question.

 

gL!!

post #3 of 13

The only thing that comes to mind is the Q701, but don't bother without a good amp (which i'm sure you have). Portable amps just won't work very well.

 

I won't say the HD-600 or HD-650 since I think they're side-grades or downgrades to my ears, but do a few things better. All comes down to preferences really.

 

I do think the HD-580 is closer to the 598s sound than the HD-600/650. It has less mid-bass than the HD-600 and more treble. Sounds clearer too and has more forward mids. Yes, same driver and everything! I like it a lot.

 

The Q701 mids aren't as "thick" as those of the 598, but not thin or lacking. It's a very full sounding headphone with the right setup, but not as warm as the usual Sennheiser stuff. Certainly not the HD-600 or HD-650!

 

I actually think the K601 is closer to the HD-598 sound than the Q701. Too bad it's hard to find for a decent price now. It's MUCH warmer than the Q701 and has less treble. Not quite as clear, but does have a lot more bass. Used K601 is a steal if you can find one under $150.
 

BTW the bass quantity between the HD-598 and Q701 is very similar.

post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post

The only thing that comes to mind is the Q701, but don't bother without a good amp (which i'm sure you have). Portable amps just won't work very well.

 

I won't say the HD-600 or HD-650 since I think they're side-grades or downgrades to my ears, but do a few things better. All comes down to preferences really.

 

I do think the HD-580 is closer to the 598s sound than the HD-600/650. It has less mid-bass than the HD-600 and more treble. Sounds clearer too and has more forward mids. Yes, same driver and everything! I like it a lot.

 

The Q701 mids aren't as "thick" as those of the 598, but not thin or lacking. It's a very full sounding headphone with the right setup, but not as warm as the usual Sennheiser stuff. Certainly not the HD-600 or HD-650!

 

I actually think the K601 is closer to the HD-598 sound than the Q701. Too bad it's hard to find for a decent price now. It's MUCH warmer than the Q701 and has less treble. Not quite as clear, but does have a lot more bass. Used K601 is a steal if you can find one under $150.
 

BTW the bass quantity between the HD-598 and Q701 is very similar.

Thanks but the Q701 isn't something I would consider an upgrade. They're pretty much on the same tier imo. I was looking fro something more expensive $500 dollar range. Should I look into the planar magnetics and electrostat? I'm primarily looking for dynamic headphone upgrade. Preferably under 1000 dollars. 

post #5 of 13

You might consider the he500 if your budget will stretch. This will get you upgraded mids, incredible sound stage and wonderful extension on the treble. You'll need a good amp though...

post #6 of 13

Have you thought about upgrading your source and amp as well? As great as the headphones that have been suggested are, what you're looking for is much dependent on other components as well.

post #7 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by NimbleTurtle View Post

I'm looking for an upgrade to these headphones. I want: 

1) Even better sound stage. I already think the 598s have an incredible sound stage but I'm looking for something EVEN better. For reference, I thought the Q701s had a somewhat unrealistic soundstage. 

2) Neutral sound; I want to hear the recording as it was intended. However, I don't mind the bass to be SLIGHTLY emphasized. I always felt that headphones have to compensate for the way our body naturally takes in bass sound through our body cavities when music is heard live. 

3) Clarity. If there is one thing I wanted from the 598s, it would be clarity. 

 

Btw, just out of curiosity, how do these compare with the Denons and Beyerdynamics in terms of midrange and treble? What's the difference? I've heard these but never compared them side by side, which is obviously crucial in accurately observing the differences. I'm guessing the difference is clarity and timbre accuracy... 

What source(s), DAC and headphone amplifier are you currently using?

post #8 of 13
Thread Starter 

I plan to get the ODA/ ODAC. 

post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PurpleAngel View Post

What source(s), DAC and headphone amplifier are you currently using?

Oops forgot to quote and reply. 

post #10 of 13

I also recommend the HE500.

post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattTCG View Post

What is your budget? If you have $400, I'd go with the he400 no question.

 

gL!!


Have you heard the HD 598? If so would you say they really match or exceed the sound stage and beautiful mids the HD 598's have? IDK it's tough to believe. I know the HD 598's are on the cheap side but I think a lot of people can agree they sound a lot better than their price range.

post #12 of 13

Q701's sound stage have many relationships with their earpad...

post #13 of 13
Hmm from what I see it sounds like the HE400 is sort of like the HD598 with smoother but less forward mids, added bass, but diminished sound stage. From reading reviews it seems like it has more detail as well though. I think I would kinda miss that wonderful sound stage from the HD598 but the 400's definitely seem legit. I could get it if I sold the senns plus some of my older stuff lying around but I just don't see a good enough reason to. Who knows though? I may randomly change my mind one day and give it a whirl. I would love to find a true successor to the HD 598...just a great headphone with absolutely no buyers remorse at $180
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