My first pair of real headphones (Sennheiser HD205)
Jul 28, 2009 at 1:49 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 3


Jul 25, 2009
First post so go easy, please. I finally took the plunge into buying a semi-decent set of headphones. Of course I found my HD205’s for so cheap, it wasn’t much of a plunge. I am not a headphone person. I always feel like the sensation of the headphones on my head or in my ears creates an extra barrier (by the way, I physically just can’t handle the feel of in-ear phones of any type in my ears). Couple that with a certain openness and ambience that I get from listening to a good set of speakers and I just could never get myself to invest in headphones. (Of course its true I’ve never heard a real high-end headphone, but at my budget level, that’s not really an option.) Plus, I never really needed to. I’ve got my speakers at home and I don’t need headphones at work (my offices have always been equipped with speakers and have had walls).

The cheapos I had were starting to break and I have some traveling coming up so I decided it was time to buy a new pair of cans. I have young kids at home, so I wanted something durable, but cheap and decent sounding and other than the thin cord, the HD205 seemd to fit the bill. After giving the HD205’s a preliminary run through, I do still like listening to my home system much better. I can definitely tell why people complain about a muffled sound from closed cans. Given my preference for speakers, perhaps I would have done better with an open can, but then I would have paid quite a bit more than what I did and most of the lower priced open cans are not very durable it appeared to me.

I must say that HD205s seem pretty sensitive and are easy to drive with just about anything. My low power portable MD player had no problem with them, although they seemed a bit muddier than with other sources. I wonder if any of it is the result of low power or not (I am sure source quality is also an issue given compression). I also noticed that my MD player in default EQ mode is more bass heavy in playback then my receiver for the same material. From my receiver, I definitely needed to EQ the low bass up a little and the HD205s handled it easily. I haven’t tried the same material with my computer sources yet. The material I played from online sources had a lot of bass but I wonder how much of that was mixed that way. In any case they can definitely dig into those ultra low frequencies. I can’t afford a nice enough subwoofer to adequately fill my space at home, so my home system is pretty much gone below 32Hz. The HD205 can definitely go lower. The mids and highs seem a tad harsh for my taste. They lack the airiness and intimacy I prefer from my speaker system. (My current speakers are pretty laid back, somewhat of a British sound.)

Comfort wise, they are tight. Still more comfortable for me than sticking things in my ears. My surrounds are 6.5 inches wide (5 inch driver) so I am just leaving them stretched on one of those overnight a time or two and we’ll see how they do.

Overall, I am happy with the HD205s for the price I paid. Could I do better? Yes, but at a substantial increase in price. I paid a cheapo headphone price and as someone who has gone through numerous cheapo headphones over the years, this is definitely the best set I have owned. (I have heard better phones than these from time to time.)

With all that said, I am thinking about trying the mod to the HD435 earpads that the Sennheiser guy is always mentioning at some point in the future. Of course to buy the pads cost as much as I paid for the cans with the shipping. Has anyone else tried this and does it make that much of a difference? Also, how do the HD435 earpads fit onto the HD205s. I figured out how to remove the cups from the HD205 but I am not sure how the earpads would go on.
Sep 14, 2009 at 8:27 AM Post #2 of 3
Surprised you haven't received a reply after taking the time to post. This thread should be helpful, as there are a lot of new members considering these.

That said, I've had a pair of HD212PRO's for about 7 years. They were my first experience with headphones that actually had good overall sound, and powerful bass. They're just now starting to wear out, and the cushions are flaking apart. I walked/jogged/ran with them, and wore them for hours at a time, so I can vouch personally for their durability. If I didn't get little black pieces of ear cushion in my hair every time I wear them, I'd still be using them daily. I'm actually considering buying a pair of their current line (possibly the 205's) to replace them. Sennheiser has a unique sound that can't be duplicated. I have my AKG K81DJ, Philips SHP895, Porta Pro's, and CX300's to keep me happy for now, though.
Sep 15, 2009 at 4:07 AM Post #3 of 3
Belated congratulations on your new headphones OP! I hope you are still enjoying them. Thanks for taking the time to post your thoughts.

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