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Very Disappointed in My Sennheiser HD598's - Page 2

post #16 of 21

can you tell me a track you are listening to which you think doesn't sound very good on the 598?
i am not really into classical music but i love my hd 598 and i want to compare it to my grado 225i (which i also love, even its different)

post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by andy9279 View Post

First, let me say this is the first really expensive set of headphones I've bought, although I wanted a nice pair for years.  These Sennheiser HD598's were intended for listening to classical music.  They sound great on jazz, everything sounds quite good -- up close and detailed, but for classical they just sound veiled, distant, muffled, flat.  Everything just sounds far away unless I fiddle with my equalizer in my Foobar player.  I've tried them on 5 different computers/laptops.  I have a cheap Boosteroo amp which only makes it louder.  I don't have a DAC, but I understood these hardly need one, and I can't see that clearing up the problem.

I've been putting music and pink noise through them for about 24 hours now, slightly higher than listening volume, as I've seen recommended.  I think there's been some improvement, but I really can't see any amount of "burn in" making these headphones great, and I have two weeks until I'd need to return these.  Ironically, where many people complain about lack of bass, I thought that was actually fine.

So I'm quite disappointed.  I got them for $190 on eBay.  I've had a pair of headphones for probably 15 years that I likely spent no more than $25 on which I think sound superior.

Andy

I have the HD558 which has the same driver as the 598 and I use these primarily for classical and they sound great. I don't agree with those who say that you don't need a dac/amp with these. Yes you can use them in a computer headphone out, but for truly good sound I moved first to a Fiio E7 which didn't do too much. I found the Aune T1 hybrid dac/amp brought these alive. Baroque, solo piano, vocals all sound great. Large orchestral is good but not in the you are there way that other classical pieces or jazz have. For best results with that I will have to wait until I can afford the HD 600. I think that these phones will be great but only with modest amping. If you don't want to fiddle with tubes the Schiit Magni/Modi combo should be good.

Good luck in your search! Welcome to Head-Fi.
Edited by teb1013 - 10/14/13 at 9:00pm
post #18 of 21

Try to listen HD 598 by using dac/amp.

The sound quality of my K240 mk ii and HE 400 is much better with E17 rather than on board soundcard.

post #19 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by rubinstein View Post
 

Try to listen HD 598 by using dac/amp.

The sound quality of my K240 mk ii and HE 400 is much better with E17 rather than on board soundcard.

If he doesn't like them, he probably still won't like it with an amp. I'd go for some warmer headphones, or bassier headphones.  The Fidelio X1, and HE400 are very good.

 

Don't forget those closed headphones.  The KEF M500, ATH WS99, and Sony MDR 1r are all pretty good too.

post #20 of 21
If it's any consolation, these took a while to grow on me, but now I wouldn't ever live without them. I kinda felt the same way too, coming from much livelier Grado cans, and on direct comparison, they may very well seem laid back, but whether it was just brain burn-in, driver burn-in or both, I have grown to love my HD598s for their unique character.

They have a certain warmth and liquid like presentation and won't blow your socks off with speed, but that totally non-fatiguing and smooth nature is just what I need sometimes for late night listening and these get more head time than my HE-400s.

They are supremely comfortable as well, which is something I don't get with my other cans.

BTW, I listen to a vast range of music, but mostly large scale orchestral stuff, with a lot of metal, jazz, funk, big band stuff in there too.

I have a collection of headphones to fulfil my listening needs, but wouldn't be without the HD598s.

Give them a try with a good dynamic movie too, I think you might be surprised just how capable these cans are in their scale and presentation. Also, you hardly notice you're wearing them and they look gorgeous to boot!

I really hope they grow on you before you get rid.

Good luck!
post #21 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by andy9279 View Post
 

Thanks for everyone's advice.  I've given these well over 72 hours of "burn in" time, they seem to be settled into being what they're gonna be.  Still playing music and pink noise through them though.  (For anyone interested, I didn't notice a big difference after the first 24 hours.)

 

When I up the up the EQ settings on these around 10KHz I think they sound quite good for classical.  Not sure if a DAC would help?  From what I've read it sounds a DAC would add a bit more bass and volume.  I just prefer more clarity, and the instruments more up-front I suppose.  The big sound stage is maybe not my thing, or not what I'm use to.

 

 

Andy

It looks like the Sennheisers will not do it for you, HD598 or HD600. Your ears need a different kind of sound signature, the one that is more treble oriented. The most headphones today have recessed middle frequencies and they are not good for the classical music because the middle frequencies are the music, the instruments and the vocals. Good options would be Audio Technica AD2000X [a second hand purchase] as open headphones and Beyerdynamic DT660 as closed ones and thus portable ones. AD2000X have fully present mid frequencies and treble. When bass is turned up they sound great with classical music. I have not heard DT660 but it has good reviews as headphones for the classical music.

http://www.head-fi.org/t/126171/beyerdynamic-dt-660-880-990-pro-a-comparison

http://www.head-fi.org/t/559542/i-truly-believe-these-are-one-of-the-best-classical-music-headphones-ive-ever-heard

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