1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.

    Dismiss Notice

Sennheiser HD 650 Headphones

  1. eimis
    The most reviewed headphone?
    Written by eimis
    Published Feb 15, 2019
    Pros - Um uhh everything? They're awesome
    Cons - The cable is kinda annoying, it keeps getting in the way and my ears get zapped occasionally (very low air humidity in here)
    From a post of mine:
    I realized something about the HD650, now that I'm listening to my 2nd pair (rebought ~6 years after selling my 1st pair): an immature listener might completely under-appreciate what they do, how they present recordings, have no idea and then just sell them like I did. It took me that many years to understand what I want and what I hear... It's hard to explain but at the moment I feel like these bastards will only be sold if I go deaf. They're just so competent, they shift my attention to music. The detail level is really good and the way they image is sorta enigmatic but competent and engaging. I can't say that I miss the soundstage or sub-bass of my bass-port modified Q701. It's like when you listen to HD650 you're in a world where other headphones don't exist, or the things that HD650 are incapable of are just irrelevant or don't matter. This second pair smells exactly the same as my 1st (I wonder what psyche-manipulating stuff Senn puts into that fragrance...).

    BTW I think it's important to maintain the pads in good shape, replace them once they compress and especially replace them right away on a newly acquired used pair (mine is ~12 years old).
    Written by SDVJCN
    Published Dec 25, 2017
    Pros - .
    Cons - .
    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Aenean commodo ligula eget dolor. Aenean massa. Cum sociis natoque penatibus et magnis dis parturient montes, nascetur ridiculus mus. Donec quam felis, ultricies nec, pellentesque eu, pretium quis, sem. Nulla consequat massa quis enim. Donec.
  3. neptunegarand
    Perfect entry to audio nirvana
    Written by neptunegarand
    Published Nov 9, 2017
    Pros - Extremely scalable depending on the amp! An all rounder and my daily headphones for everything, media e.t.c
    Cons - Couldn't fault them. Having owned the hd800s I can say they are laid back by comparisson but that's why i love them. They're great for anything and everything. Just power them and be rewarded!
    My pros and cons are sufficient. There are many including myself who will vouch for this being one of the greatest purchases you'll make if you're looking to get Into hi fidelity listening.

    You can get them used and burned in for next to nothing now and you wont regret it. Comfort alone has been a major part in why they've always remained in my line-up.
      Dmurtin likes this.
  4. Mikualotic
    An Exceptional Headphone
    Written by Mikualotic
    Published Mar 21, 2017
    Pros - Scale well source material,great balance of sound, and comfortable
    Cons - plastic (good plastic though)
    e DSC_0774.jpg

    After owning the HD of 650 for two months it is time to do a review. With that time I was able to get the Vallah 2. I was using the Magni 2. The OTL tube amp is a game changer for this headphone. I wish I had a better solid state amp to do a better comparison in sound quality. The OTL amp makes everything sound richer,slightly warmer, and more soundstage with the HD 650.  

    To begin this review of the HD 650, I listen to a variety of music (classical, EDM, theory, rock, and animation to name a few) preforms well in these genres of music. Overall I enjoy the sound of HD 650. Imaging on this headphones are extremely. Soundstage great; it does wonders with live recordings. Bass on these are exceptional for an open dynamic headphone which makes it a worthy upgrade from the HD 598. Mids are awesome on these amazing. Highs on these are solid --not too much harshness on them (2.5k and 7k region).Details on these are amazing . For an example, I can hear the way of a guitar is strummed and hear the room. Thus, I find the tone of the headphone very well balanced for my sensitive ears.       

    Comfort on these are very good. The headband is very comfortable. It has little pressure to no head pressure on them because of the
     headband spectacular design.  Earpads are alright. It also has a light clamp. These headphones are so comfortable that I can listen for hours at a time with these on. 

    My final thoughts of these headphones that they are very solid pair of headphones due to the great sound that they can produce as well as the great comfort. These headphones changed the way I proceed sound. In my opinion, I believe everyone should try these out.  

  5. Dobrescu George
    Smooth midrange headphone from Sennheiser
    Written by Dobrescu George
    Published Feb 19, 2017
    Pros - Smooth sound, Good bass extension, Natural tone, Good comfort, Very good details, Vivid sound, Almost linear presentation
    Cons - Price, Intimate soundstage, Upper treble lacks some energy, Bass is not for bassheads
    Sennheiser HD650 is one of the (seemingly) consecrated headphones made by Sennheiser as an upgrade (update?) to their well received model, HD600. HD600 has been quite popular from the beginning of its life and has been considered one of the best headphones ever made albeit Sennheiser later made the renowned HD800 (Which have also been later updated to HD800S). To be honest, I find ie800 from sennheiser to be the TOTL IEM with the sound closest to my ideals even without any Equalization albeit it's treble being a bit hot for some sources (DAPs). 
    HD800S is a very good headphone with which I had the pleasure of spending a few hours with, also has a very nice, unique sound to it and it would probably be my TOTL end-game headphone if I could use open back headphones as my whole day headphones. 
    About me
    My name is George and I enjoy music. Quite a lot I might add. I listen to a lot of music while working on my company's games. You can check out more on our pages here https://www.facebook.com/seventh.heart.studios/     and here https://twitter.com/7heartstudios . My love for music has had a little impact on our games as we price the music part of a game very high and we are committed to only use ogg -q10 as the encoding format for our music since it offers the best space to sound quality ratio.
    I also have a pretty good hearing and the higher treble means quite a lot to me (8-18kHz area). This perceptual importance that I offer to treble might also come from the music that I listen to having a lot of information in the upper registers. 

    First Impression
    I first listened to HD650 inside AVstore's own show room, using their own amplifiers and the sound was pretty interesting. I wasn't amazed but rather enticed. If there was one thing that impressed me the most - that was the tonality. Absolutely natural. Having tested over 300 different headphones and IEMs to day and having participated in a ton of live music and professional mastering, I know what a natural tone and timbre is. Hd650 has exactly that natural tone and timbre. Considering their price, I thought that they were pretty good. 
    Another first impression that HD650 left me with was their comfort. They didn't look as fine as HD800 and the plastic doesn't have an expensive feeling to it (I was kinda expecting that, knowing HD380Pro, the cheaper but good entry level model from Senn), but HD650 were shockingly comfortable to me. 
    HD650 comes nicely packaged, but there isn't so much in the package - you get your HD650, cable, and adapter. And that's it. The box is nice for depositing HD650, but I wouldn't really take them out of the house or carry them around too much. 
    Technical Specifications
    Impedance300 ohm
    Connector6.3mm w/ 3.5mm adapter included in the box
    Frequency Response10 Hz - 39.500Hz
    Max Sound Pressure (SPL)103dB (1kHz, 1Vrms)
    Ear couplingCircum-Aural
    Cable length3m Straight Cable
    Transducer typeDynamic transducer, open back type
    Power (load rating)200mW
    Weight without cable260g
    Passive noise attenuationZero
    Total Harmonic Distortion (THD)<1% (1kHz, 100dB SPL)
    Contact pressure2.5N approx.

    Build Quality/Aesthetics
    HD650 looks and feels a tiny bit like a vintage jewel, it's not exactly the most sturdy headphone I had in my hands, but not the most flimsy either. They feel well built, but lack some of the higher quality with which HD800 spoiled me while they feel a bit better than Ath-A700x for example. They are light enough to be comfortable, but HD380Pro would be lighter if it weren't for that coiled cable. The cable of HD650 is long and you probably will need to buy an exchange cable to be able to walk with them on your ears. I actually think that you need a change cable anyways since I wasn't such a big fan of the length of the original one. Make no mistake, I personally didn't feel a change  with the new cable, only the feeling and length were different. 
    HD650 reminds a bit of older electrostats and their design, albeit they are a it more stylish. The headband adjusting mechanism works as intended and cable connectors feel pretty solid to me. HD650 is an open back headphone and this means that the driver gets exposed to a bit more than it gets on a closed back headphone. I like the overall build quality of HD650, though the cups move too little for my tastes and the plastic can feel a bit flimsy, especially compared to HD380Pro or with HD800.
    Comfort / Isolation
    Comfort is good on HD650, and you do get the advantage of having a softer clamping force but a very comfortable padding. The top headband padding does a good job at distributing the weight of the headphones on the head, while the pads are large and provide enough depth for your ears to rest well. You won't sweat while wearing HD650 as the pads are velour and you won't get any discomfort after longer periods of time (like an itch that can be caused by some velour types).
    This being said, the pads are comfortable because they don't isolate at all. HD650 is a fully open over the ears headphone that will pump all your music outside at the same rate that it pumps it into your ears. The open back design is something that you should be aware from before buying them as it's not something to solve or to help with, they are open and are going to stay open. 
    HD650 would probably be the most comfortable headphones ever made and you wouldn't know that there is any better before trying HD800 since HD650 not only have a weak clamping force, but the pads are pretty soft and the padding is pretty soft as well and they are light. 
    HD650 has a clear, natural, vivid, dark and soft sound. The tonality is very natural to me, especially the mids tonality is natural while the whole signature is pretty dark (not warm but dark). They are vivid and recover most details and textures well, being one of the best headphones in the midrange area (though there are a few contenders emerging recently).
    The FR as measured by Golden Ears, using their own equipment:
    Channel imbalance
    After a short analysis of the graph from Golden Ears you will notice some channel imbalance in the graph response. I don't hear any channel imbalance but the open back design will also help alleviate this more than it would be in a closed back headphone
    Bass has a solid texture, or at least pretty solid. The signature being dark, the bass will be a bit enhanced, but HD650 is not a basshead headphone and won't become one any day soon. As it happens with many open back headphones, the bass goes pretty low, but doesn't reach as low as a true closed back and bass head headphone. The explanation is that under the frequency of 30Hz, the bass is felt less due to the open back design and the slam / pressure force is weaker in the bass than in closed back designs. Testing HD650 with my test tracks reveals a meaty and nice sounding bass guitar, an HD650 works really well for any kind of music, except for electronica and dubstep where I generally like the bass to be overpowering. Since the bass is solid, this also means that it is pretty fast, you will get even fine textures hidden in the bass and the bass detail is very good, competing with HD800 most of times. The bass does not bleed into the mids nor does it feel too much to me (I would call for even more any day of the week),
    Midrange is really good and sounds natural, no real coloring and no problems to report with it. Background instruments like background violins in Sonata Arctica compositions can sound a bit too much in the back, but they are audible nevertheless. Micro textures in the midrange are easily heard and you will get a lot of details thrown at you at once, resulting in a pretty sweet combination with the bass. This led to that wow effect many are experiencing after first hearing HD650, but I've been using ie800 before and I can only say that ie800 is slightly better, which is quite amazing considering that ie800 is a IEM and hd650 is an open back headphone. There are no dips in the midange for HD650, so you're going to hear the midrange pretty forward and pretty aggressive. It works well as there is no distortion, but makes the bass feel a bit less  (if you were used with closed back headphones), and it gives guitars a magical sweet sound to them.
    Female voices sound good, but Jill Tracy's voice feels a bit close to the listener and a bit too intimate given the rather large soundscape other headphones paint Jill Tracy's compositions as (HD800 for example)
    Treble is where I'm not as happy anymore. While this doesn't really appear in the graphs, the treble feels rolled off and closed, cymbals don't have that sparkle nor engagement to them. The upper midrange is ever so slightly rolled off, and the upper midrange, lower treble is very smooth. I can totally see HD650 being as the ultimate relaxing headphone solution that would include Jazz music and a glass of wine rather than the metal and upbeat electronica that I'm used to. To be honest, I tested HD650 with Jazz and I did alter the sound via EQ up to the point where I liked the sound - so it is possible to get better results, but you should be aware that they're quite smooth and the treble is not bright by any means. 
    Since this is a matter of preference, I won't name it good or bad but try to describe it. The treble is soft - this means that there is no harshness and no grain. Softening the treble can turn it slightly sibilant in many cases, but it stays pretty true in HD650. I was able to enjoy classical music very well, same for cabaret, jazz, and almost all acoustic types of music. When it comes to metal and electronica, the smoothness in the treble will take some of the fun out of the music, and while my opinion might be controversial, I do prefer a Grado or ie800/HD800 kind of treble. I'm glad that I own ie800 and I know that Sennheiser also makes my favorite IEM, so the best explanation to HD650's tuning and sound is that HD650 appeals to an entirely different public. If you're looking for a relaxing sound or the most relaxed sound, but a sound that has good details, brings life to your music and is not veiled, HD650 is an interesting option.
    To not be confusing about the treble, I will end with this bottom line: The treble is really good if you're comparing HD650 with other midrange headphones, but I would had wanted a bit more extension for the treble and a bit more spark. 
    Soundstage is intimate and lacks the width, height and depth of HD800, Ie800 or Ultrasone Dj One Pro. While HD650 are pretty mid centric headphones, they sound focused and intimate, so you might miss some of that 3D surround emotion you get with HD800 or with some better Ultrasone headphones. My personal preference is for soundstage to be large, so I will pick ie800 or hd800, but hd650 works pretty well with music that is supposed to be intimate - like rock ballads or room cabaret or certain classical compositions. From this perspective, it works well with metal. For metal music, having too much soundstage isn't always better, so if you like your metal smooth, HD650 is good to look into.
    Sennheiser Veil 
    Compared to other Sennheiser headphones, HD650 presents almost no veil, and there is no talk of Senneiser typical veil. In fact, HD650 is clearer and more vivid than many other headphones, making it one of the clearer headphones I had the occasion to test and play with. 
    Drive factor
    I've used a lot of amps to test HD650 starting from FiiO E12 to Matrix M-Stage, Chord Hugo, FiiO E12A, WooAudio Wa5-LE, WA22, HDVD800, ifi iDSD, FiiO X5, FiiO X5ii. I easily heard the differences in sound made by different amps, but I personally am not a fan of tube amps and I preferred HD650 driven from X5ii -> Hugo, X5ii -> iDSD, X5ii -> E12, X5ii -> M-stage and from FiiO X5ii the most out of this list. I thought that HDVD800 sounded good as well, but I spent far less time with it and only in a showroom so it's better I refrain from an opinion about the combo. I like brighter sounds with tons of bass - so coloration is good considering my tastes. I'm not shy to apply software equalization to a headphone - so I don't rely entirely on an amp to color the sound for me. I liked FiiO's X5ii as a DAP driving HD650, I liked X5ii + E12 for well priced but really good sounding combo to drive HD650 and I did like X5ii + ifi iDSD for their sound. I would recommend FiiO X5ii as the main transport for any AMP I used - with the mention that FiiO X5-3 is coming along and you will probably want to look into it and get FiiO X5-3 instead.
    Ie800 - Ie800 has considerably more bass, more treble, the tonality is not as neutral but has some color to it, and it's soundstage and instrument separation are better. Ie800 also costs more and is an in-ear model, although it is the best In-Ear model that I tried to date. Ie800 can be fatiguing if you don't like the treble, but I love it's sound and treble. You can check out more here http://www.head-fi.org/products/sennheiser-ie800/reviews/13293
    Dj One Pro - Dj One pro has more bass, a considerably larger soundstage, but HD650 has a clearer sound, better instrument separation and even though it has less treble, it has more details to it. Dj One Pro costs about 1/5 of HD650 and sounds better than 1/5 of HD650, you can check out more here http://www.head-fi.org/products/ultrasone-dj1-pro/reviews/17937
    Ath a700x - a700x has a lighter tonality, less bass, and more treble. In terms of detail retrieval, HD650 is better, but the enhanced treble on A700X makes it sound more detailed at times. HD650 sounds more vivid all the time and has a more natural sound
    HD380pro - The sounds are not really similar, even though I expected this to be true. HD380 pro has a different sound to it's bass, albeit it comes in a similar quantity and characteristics. HD380Pro doesn't hold up in the mids as HD650 recovers far more mids and HD650 has more treble, smoother treble and a more natural sounding treble (380pro as some grain to the treble, as you can see here http://www.head-fi.org/products/sennheiser-hd-380-pro-headphones/reviews/18049 ). Even if there are similarities, the difference in price is felt well although I can't use open back headphones most of times so for me it wasn't a fair comparison. 

    LCD2 / LCD4 - They sound similar. Since my relatively high valency to treble makes me feel differences in the treble faster, I could say that LCD2 and LCD4 were somewhat similar to HD650, with the mention that I didn't listen to either LCD for long enough to have a true opinion about this - so take this part with a grain of salt. 
    HD 650 is a comfortable, smooth, light, intimate, okay built, premium headphone with a really clear sound that enhances midrange and slightly enhances bass while reducing the amount of treble and smoothing it out. I won't own a pair for myself for the same reason I can't own a HD800 - I can't listen to open back headphones. The pair I used was not mine but borrowed from a friend who let me play with it, and those are my honest words about HD650. I like HD800S better, but HD650 was no slouch, especially if you like smooth sounds. I can totally see many people liking HD650 to bits and my wife loved it when we tested a HD650, though she also liked LCD series from Audeze. HD650 has a great audio quality and comfort but it's a frail headphone and I don't see resisting a hit to the ground as well as HD380Pro resisted any beating it took from me. I would buy a HD650 for my own enjoyment if I were able to use open back headphones, and I do recommend you to listen to HD650 as you'll probably find it to be a very interesting headphone that people were right about when hyping about it. 

      HungryPanda likes this.
    1. View previous replies...
    2. Dobrescu George
      Thank you, @Lord Rexter ! 

      I hope that it will be helpful! 
      Dobrescu George, Feb 19, 2017
    3. HungryPanda
      Very nice review indeed
      HungryPanda, Feb 20, 2017
    4. Dobrescu George
      Dobrescu George, Feb 20, 2017
    ORGASMIC - soulsiklab reviews
    Written by SOULSIK
    Published Feb 18, 2017
    Pros - Great sound stage, Comfortable, Great mids, bass and treble in that order
    Cons - Build quality can improve especially the wires.
    Sennheiser HD 650 
    COST: $370
    This headphone is well known by many people. With that being said, it is not a "new" model, its been released for a while. It has also been dropped on massdrop as the sennheiser HD6xx, once again returning our attention to the greatness of this headphone. There is also this big question whether they will drop the HD6xx again or not with over 50,000 people requesting it ! 
    - frequency response of 10 - 39,500 Hz (-10 dB) 
    - High-power neodymium magnets
    - Lightweight aluminum voice coils
    - 300 ohms 
    - SPL: 103db
    - THD: less than 0.05%
    - Open back
    The headphone is not the stylish headphone but remember these are open back and are intended for home use. It comes in one single silver color although the limited massdrop edition (HD6xx) comes in a midnight blue finish
    Build Quality
    Mostly plastic and the wires can feel cheap but everything works well and most of all comfortable 
    Sound Quality
    Now this is where we talk about the most important thing in a headphone. The sound quality in these headphones are superb. Scratch what you've read from other people because we all have difficulties describing this headphone especially when it comes to the sound qualities. It is the best neutral with extended bass YET still not boring... 
    Overall is it worth the money?
    Absolutely, if you can buy one headphone and you are buying something other than this, you are doing it wrong !
    yes I highly recommend you use one with these. some recommendations are some schiit products or O2/ODAC 
    NOW keep in mind these are "some" and there are countless more others recommend depending on preferences
    I personally use the DARKVOICE 336SE tube amp with my OPPO HA 2 SE as the dac
    there are various mods online that can be done easily to improve bass etc, shoot me a message if you have any questions or difficulties
    Want me to compare x headphone to these? feel free to message me for extra help ! OR better yet try my pair before you buy them ! HOPE THIS HELPED 
    review provided by soulsikreviews.com (more detailed review available on the website)
    video for reference only
      GlaSid likes this.
  7. grizzlybeast
    Massdrop x Sennheiser HD 6XX Headphones / Sennheiser HD650 Tribute
    Written by grizzlybeast
    Published Nov 6, 2016
    Pros - Tonality, Price, Audio quality
    Cons - Needs to be modded and/or amp paired correctly for the best performance


    Massdrop x Sennheiser HD 6XX Headphones


    Let me start of by saying this is not what I would call a real review. This is more like a Tribute to a headphone that, while controversial, has been and is irrevocably deemed a classic reference headphone. Not just my posts but many reviews have referred to it or used as a headphone to compare it to.  The disclaimer is that I have known about this release for a while now and have been sent  a pair. Even so, given my long relationship with several pairs of HD650's I have no reason to shill these along side the fact that they will sell out very quickly anyhow. 

    Tribute / Appreciation
    I have had 6 pairs myself with the HD6XX being my seventh pair. I have bought and sold this headphones for a myriad of reasons. It always seems to end back up in my stable because I have come to know it as consistently more spot on in tonality than just about every headphone I have heard. Some of the reasons for me selling them so many times was because I sold it them to help fund a new piece of gear or was in a honeymoon phase of something new that outperformed it in a particular attribute. Then later when I knew I had lost my bearings on how things were supposed to sound I would repurchase it again. 
    Why were people asking if the Focal Elear was the super 650 they have always wanted?
    Why do people ask if the the new ZMF Atticus are the closed back HD650's they have been longing for?
    Why when the Audeze LCD 2 was released was it called the planar magnetic super HD650?
    Could it be because  they are more expensive headphones with a darker than neutral signature? Well if so then why is it much less popular for someone to ask for a super Beyerdynamic DT880? or a super Hifiman HE-500 even? Such an opinionated and categorically diverse thing as music can't possibly have one tuning unanimously crowned as champion can it? Uhhh... well if it did, love it or hate it, like it or leave it, buy it or sell it, the Sennheiser HD650(or even HD600) is unequivocally the closest thing to having that crown as far as headphones go. Sure the HD800 is technically better but just because the prince is younger, brighter,  and faster doesn't make him king. The king would have to die first and as far as that goes the HD650 is apparently immortal. Relatively, the 600 is the more even tempered queen right by his side. 
    Let's take a look around the web shall we:
    This is without searching specifically for the HD650 but rather "best reference open back headphone". Some have their preferences but there is one consistently present. 

    Studio / Professional usage:


    Thought this one was interesting  on the 600

    A quote from one of all of our favorite sources:
    - "Well...they've changed their tune a bit with the just announced Massdrop Sennheiser HD 6XX because in this case they didn't change the headphone's tuning it at all. (Measurements show the HD 6XX and HD 650 essentially identical within measurement errors.) No, there is really no reason for them to re-tune the Sennheiser HD 650. They've done their homework. They know that this is widely considered amongst headphone enthusiasts the standard by which all other headphones are compared. I've reviewed them and love them. Yes, there are better sounding high-end headphones, but none deliver the price/performance ratio of this icon."

    Read more at http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/if-it-aint-brokethe-massdrop-sennheiser-hd-6xx#qLHs1kALCTYimQT2.99

    Looks / Comfort / Build

    1. Ear pads out of the box are slightly firm but deep and create a healthy distance between the driver and the ear.
    2. The ergonomics have proven to be timeless and are a succession of previous designs used by Sennheiser
    3. I won't mention the names of other manufacturers but I dare you to find a 650 that was delivered broken through shipping. If it does happen it is a lot more rare than with ____. You fill in the blank. 
    4. The clamp pressure can be a bit imposing out of the box. 


    1. Very dynamic and punchy without sounding aggressive. (Amp dependent so results may vary)
    2. Good Microdynamics
    3. Great Details
    4. Non Fatiguing
    5. A chameleon with down stream and upstream gear so heavily manipulatable. 
    6. The treble can be grainy and/ or slightly dark to some but is smooth in balance with good resolution and extension
    7. Wonderful midrange from the lower midrange all the way through to the lower treble
    8. The bass is a bit rounded with a slight mid bass elevation for healthy kick drums
    9. The sub bass can sound ill extended at times but for the most part is capable of handling even sub bass saturated genres(yet not effortlessly)
    10. Can be modded to have very tight and controlled bass, even better clarity and cleanliness (very easy to mod)
    11. Can sometimes sound slow and veiled to some when not properly amped or in stock version. 
    12. Very scalable and reportedly becomes competitive with Top of the Line headphones when used with uber quality amplification
    13. Soundstage can sound narrow to some but maintains adequate depth and layering for  relatively deep insight into recordings. However, in the grand scheme of open back headphones it usually sounds less wide and is said to have a small soundstage. Again, amping really helps the depth of soundstage increase. 
    14. Though some believe it is a darker sounding headphone, It really works well with OTL tube amps and is revealing of system changes and improvements. 




    There is a coin mod to be done by using a quarter to cut out a portion of the foam covering the drive; a removal of the back cover and adding Dynamat in specific places; and a  removal of  the foam from the back of the driver. (please put the cover back on). Be sure to scour the internet for more specific instructions. Rest assure that these mods are all VERY VERY easy. There are all sorts of mods..even some to make it brighter. 
    The mods can give the following improvements:
    1. Increase of bass control and perceived reach
    2. More satisfyingly visceral bass slam
    3. Increased speed
    4. Faster Decay
    5. Crisper and livelier sound
    6. More openness and clarity
    There may be more improvements and mods to do so this is by no means exhaustive, and again just a little boost to get you started. I personally heard the HD6XX and thought that they changed the tuning until measurements confirmed that they actually are the same HD650. I had become acclimated to the tuning of my modded 650 so upon arrival I was very disappointed with the stock bass in comparison as well as felt the headphone sounded slower. For 199 the HD6XX is a no brainer and a modded 650/6XX one will become legend if it already isn't by now...the stock version most definitely is. 


    Amps I have heard the 650 on and personal rankings (of the pairings not the amps themselves)

    • Apex Teton
    • Trafomatic Head 2
    • Ifi iCan Pro 
    • Bottle head Crack and Speedball upgrade/ Schiit Jotunheim 
    • Cayin iHA-6 
    • Airist Audio Heron
    • Nuprime HPA-9 (a bit dark for it but good body)
    • NFB - 28


     HD6XX VS HD650

    The aesthetics and accessories are the only thing to compare here really. But eh..why not?
    1. The 650 comes with a longer cable terminated in XLR and an adapter for 1/8 jacks
    2. The 6XX comes with a shorter cable terminated in 1/8 inch and has a 1.4 inch adapter. Why... possibly to be more compatible with portable amplification and transportable systems. Because by no means is it competitive with 'Beats' since people with those headphones most likely wont be using any amplifier
    3. The 650 will still have the more luxurious or classy paint job as the 6XX is a plain midnight blue that can look black depending on the lighting used. 
    4. Through and through the build quality is the same and they measure the same as well 


    When I started the "Massdrop Collaborations...What If?" thread almost a year ago I expressed how my choice would be for a 650 collaboration. While not quite black, I am sure Sennheiser had their reasons and I am very happy that this headphone is available at price lower than I have ever paid even for a used pair. These are good times to be an audio enthusiast. Not to mention the most recent release of the Schiit Jotenheim, now Music lovers can have a system I used to dream about for a lot less than a new 650 and Bottlehead Crack w/ Speedball upgrade would have costed you back then. I feel very humbled to have been able to witness this re-launching of an industry legend and know tons more people will be smiling from ear to ear as they listen to music "the right way" lol.. just playing anyway you choose is the right way for you.
    1. mynameisdmoon
      Thanks for the great review. 
      I want to pick your brains regarding the Jotunheim vs Bottlehead Crack+Speedball. Are they really that comparable? The consensus seems that with proper tubes, Crack + Speedball is the best setup you can get for the HD650/6xx but it's also rather costly. While I can't imagine the Jotunheim is on par with it, are they really that close in sound that you'd rank them together?
      I'm curious as I also received my HD6xx and thought about upgrading my amp in a few months from my simple magni 2 as they seem to be holding these back.
      mynameisdmoon, Dec 21, 2016
  8. snapacap
    Wonderful balance, could be less clampy, less clear than HD700
    Written by snapacap
    Published Jun 8, 2016
    Pros - Darkish, very few weaknesses, Lives up to the name
    Cons - Clampy, not terribly clear, loose bass
    In my time observing the qualities of headphones, I have narrowed myself down to the point where I know certain sound signatures will be to my liking, or not. The culmination of all my others pairs have led me to the HD650.
    As a few know, sound quality doesn't hold much weight when the headphones are uncomfortable. Luckily, I can say that they are not nearly as uncomfortable as I thought they would be. The headband is one of the best designs I have seen, minus the fact it has little flex. It is lightweight, and leaves a gap for either a stand, or the ridge on your skull. The whole thing can be taken apart and put back together fairly easily. The pads are great, and the foam inside touches the ears in a way that I can't argue about. The only problem for me is my sensitive jaw. Because of the shape, the bottom of the earpads sit squarely on the middle of the back edge of my jaw. This causes discomfort after a few minutes, and this sort of discomfort does not go away for me over time. I had hoped it would as the sound is pretty good.
    Again the flaw in Sennheiser's plans is their cables. I HATE Sennheiser's cables, but this one is one of their better ones. It is not a vacuum cleaner cable, like the HD700, and is not a spaghetti monster like the 558/598 cables. The problem still rests in that it is quite long, uses proprietary connectors, and has a default 1/4 inch adapter. It is so much better to adapt a 3.5mm to a 1/4 inch than vice-versa; less weight, cheaper adapters, shorter cable.
    Sound: the part everyone cares about.
    I had come from the HD700, K7XX, HD558, Fidelio X2, and some others.
    I had the HD558, and they have my favorite sound signature of all time. A fellow Head-fier told me the HD650 was a fantastic upgrade option. This advice was spot-on.
    The HD650 for me is more comfortable, and is about twice as clear. The imaging is also very improved. The HD650 does not manage to capture quite the same magic for me as the HD558, but is not far off, and is better in pretty much every other way.
    The best headphones I have heard to date are the HD700, also my favorite.
    Compared to the HD700, The HD650 has less problems in the balance area, and everything else follows suit. The HD650 has a smooth, slightly dark, relaxedish sound. The HD700 is bright and dark at the same time, and not nearly as smooth. The largest differences between the two are the clarity, and bass. This is how you would made a decision between the two. 
    The HD650 is smoother, about 35% less clear, had noticeably more bass, but the bass is looser, and this is where I draw the line. I am ok with less clear treble, as I am very sensitive to treble, and treble can become fatiguing quickly. The bass is why I prefer the HD700. The bass is not as smooth, but lacks the tightness the HD700 has. This is the very first thing I noticed when I put them on. The difference is quite large.
    The reality is that I want an HD700 with the signature of the HD650
    I guess I should also note that I actually think the HD700 is about the same price overall as the HD650, because the HD700 is far less picky with the amp used in my experience. One could get away with something as simple as a FiiO e10 for the HD700, and be satisfied, while I would recommend a much stronger, more expensive amp for the HD650. The O2/Odac is roughly where I would aim for the HD650. At street prices, this makes them have a similar price, with an edge to the HD700 if you need both headphones and an amp. Both scale well with amp quality, but I find the HD700 to be less picky.
    Other thoughts:
    The Philips SHP9500 is not quite as good as the HD650, the Philips are grittier (less smooth), and don't extend quite as well. but dollar/performance it knocks the HD650's socks off.
    Most people find a good sweetspot around this pricepoint in the headphone world. Options like AKG, Philips, HiFiMan, Sennheiser, Beyerdynamic, and others have great offerings around there. I have not found what I am looking for yet, and probably won't until I have the best headphones on the planet.
      ScubaMan2017 likes this.
    1. Music Alchemist
      I agree with most points in this review! I find it interesting that we have owned at least four of the same headphones.
      Music Alchemist, Jun 8, 2016
  9. Delong
    classical headset
    Written by Delong
    Published May 7, 2016
    Pros - warm,forceful bass,wide sound field,comfortable wearing way
    Cons - ageing female voice,hair Destroyer (every headset. lol)
    1. xkonfuzed
      i agree it has a very wide sound field
      xkonfuzed, May 7, 2016
    2. Kerouac
      So (if I look at the cons), this could be the perfect headphone for bold men who like (voices of) older women?
      Kerouac, May 8, 2016
  10. kman1211
    Great All-purpose Mid-tier Headphone.
    Written by kman1211
    Published Feb 8, 2016
    Pros - Great tuning, relaxed, non-fatiguing, and transparent.
    Cons - Mediocre bass quality, mediocre detail, and somewhat fuzzy sounding.
    The Sennheiser HD 650 is a headphone I've owned more than once and always seem to go back to and a headphone I'm very familiar with and have tried on countless different systems from low-end to summit-fi. In terms of systems I've owned, I mainly used them on mid-fi gear. This is a headphone I have owned 3 times now, because I always found something I liked about it, but there are a few issues that ultimately have caused me to let this headphone go in the past, and the only reason I currently own them is due to getting them from a friend. This review is quite positive overall, but I honestly find them a bit exaggerated in how good they are and I don't really find them to scale up as much as many claim. Basically I don't quite find these to be the giant killers they are often touted to be. 
    Other headphones I currently own:
    AKG K7XX
    Audioquest Nighthawks
    Beyerdynamic DT 990 Pro Limited Edition
    Gear I'm currently using on the HD 650's:
    Project Sunrise III
    Sony UDA-1(Amp/USB DAC/Optical DAC).

    Gear I used to own and used extensively on the HD 650's:
    Schiit Lyr 2
    HRT Music Streamer HD

    Build and Comfort:
    This headphone is quite well put together, I would say it's about average for it's price range, but it is very modular which makes it very easy to fix and replace parts with. Comfort is good, but can be a mixed bag for some people. People with large ears that protrude may have issues with their ear-cups and their clamp may be a bit too much for those with large heads but it lessens with use.
    The main focal point of the review, it's going to be broken up in various sections. 
    Tuning: The tuning of the HD 650's is one of it's strongest points in terms of it's sound quality and honestly the reason the headphone is so beloved by so many people. The tuning of the HD 650 is among the best among open headphones and it's very even and smooth, I find it has slightly too much presence in the upper mids on most systems to my ears and it doesn't have enough sub-bass. Other than those two small complaints it does amazing on the tuning. It has a euphoric and addicting tuning to it. I did find the bass to be a bit lacking in terms of definition and overall quality.
    Imaging: This is where I start feeling a bit mixed on this headphone, it's just average in it's price range and I think some of it's competition do imaging much better overall, especially planars. The imaging has a slight smear and fuzziness to it overall which I finds ultimately prevents the sounds from having as good definition of instruments as it could, it does have an edge on imaging over the HD 600 though.
    Soundstaging: This headphones has a moderately-large sized soundstage with quite good depth, decent width, and no issues with the center imaging. Notably bigger than the HD 600's soundstage but a smaller than the Nighthawks and K712s. I find the size around that of the DT 150, DT 990 LE, or K612. The soundstage isn't the most dimensional sounding, better than some headphones such as the K7XX which honestly lacks a bit of dimension and body to the sound. It doesn't give the really 3D holographic effect in it's soundstage like the DT 150 or Nighthawks did.
    Detail: The detail on this headphone is just alright, like it's imaging it's just average. I find it somewhat lacking in detail compared to a lot of it's competition, especially planars.
    Transparency: This is another aspect of where this headphone shines, you often just forget you are listening to headphones with these. I rank these as the 2nd best headphone I've owned in terms of transparency which is saying a lot. I rank them slightly above the DT 150 in this aspect as the DT 150's slightly uneven response can distract you from time to time. I rank them below the Nighthawks as I found I don't forget them quite as often as the Nighthawks as I find the HD 650's harsher and more brittle in the treble, nor have I ever gotten the same level of realism from the HD 650 as the Nighthawks.
    Clarity: These headphones have quite good clarity, I would rank them above the AKG K712 and AKG K7XX in this aspect as the AKGs have a veil in the 2-3khz region of their sound. Compared to the DT 150 and the Nighthawks the HD 650's lack clarity and the HD 650's are somewhat smeared and fuzzy in comparison. I wouldn't call these headphones veiled or non-transparent though. The HD 650 sounds a bit fuzzy and gritty to my ears which I found takes away from a truly black background.
    Dynamics & Body: Dynamics and body I have found quite key in terms of achieve ultimate realism, especially with explosive and/or deep sounds such as drums, thunder, deep subtle rumbling, etc. Their somewhat rolled-off sub-bass does take a bit away from a more solid foundation of sound. I have found dynamics nad body to be heavily dependent on the system, I found the Lyr 2 with the HRT MS HD to of brought out a lot of dynamics and body on the HD 650. Dynamics and body are quite good on the HD 650's, about what I would expect from a good mid-tier headphone. It's not really going to create the sense of awe and power from it's dynamics like a very dynamic headphone such as the Nighthawks. Bass excursion is quite good, doesn't seem to audibly distort or break up easily and can crank out quite a bit of bass on certain systems.
    Overall, I find the HD 650 an excellent headphone, it's the overall package that makes it a great mid-tier headphone to purchase and honestly would be one of my first recommendations to people. I don't consider this headphone a flagship by any stretch, but it really comes down to what people want out of their headphones. I think it has it's flaws mainly in it's imaging department, a bit of a lack of a bass foundation as well as some lack of quality in bass, some lack of clarity, and mediocre detail reproduction. I don't honestly think these are worth the MSRP as they are getting stiffer competition as time goes one, but if you get a good deal on these I wouldn't hesitate to recommend them. 
      bpandbass likes this.
    1. Malfunkt
      This is an accurate and fair review. Definitely agree with regards to that at MSRP, the HD650 may not be the best buy. On the other hand, like you pointed out, its the overall tuning that makes the HD650 so seductive. All my other headphones best in some way and in the case of the LCD2 outclass it in a number of areas, but the tuning is almost spot on.

      They are a bit blurred, but I do feel they have good detail, enough to bring them into audiophile territory. Soundstage, well, soundstage is for speakers and headphones can't reproduce this. I personally feel the soundstage is accurate with these headphones when using binaural audio tracks. 
      Ultimately, they are just enjoyable and have a comfortable sound. 

      Malfunkt, Feb 24, 2016
      slankoe likes this.