I've never understood the people that say the stock pads "hurt" their ears. I've got a fairly large-sized head, so you'd think if it was going to hurt anyone, it would be someone with a larger head which could cause a stronger clamping force. The WS55 had much more clamping force and could be uncomfortable until you stretched it out.....I never had to do so with the S500.
I think it's the way people set them on their ears. When I first got them sometimes my left ear would be sore and sometimes it wouldn't, now that never happens. If I put it on my ears a certain way I can't even feel them; I really like the stock pads. I'm going to be getting the ATH pleathers and the WS55 pads to compare though.
I have the HM5 pads and I don't use them as much as the stock pads.