Robustness of HD598 only thing keeping me from purchasing. Need advice from users.
Dec 18, 2011 at 1:04 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 6


New Head-Fier
Dec 18, 2011
Hi guys,
Long time lurker, first time poster. I used to own a pair of HD555s many moons ago and I felt they were the best set of headphones I had ever owned, unfortunately they were stolen and I was relegated to a pair of abysmal gaming headphones for listening to music.
I want to buy myself a pair of HD598s but I have been hearing bad things about their level of robustness. I will most likely be getting a desktop amp or a cambridge audio amp to drive them at home but I was wanting to use them on a day to day basis on my way to work as well.
So my main questions to people who use the HD598s on a day to day basis, how have they held up in terms of wear and tear? and do any of you use them on standard portable devices and how do they sound?
Sorry if this has been asked before but I looked in the 600 page long headphone post but I lost the will to live trying to find information about it.
Thanks in advance.
Dec 18, 2011 at 2:27 PM Post #2 of 6
They're pretty robust. Some find them plastic-y, but I've heard of stories where someone just took them in his bag and carries them around all day and they withstood the abuse pretty well. That said, they aren't as indestructable as those with metal casings, I guess. The issue with them cracking has also been resolved since July of this year, but if it still happens due to stock from before that, Sennheiser will replace them under warranty no problem. They're also a step up (or two) from the 555's.
Due to the open design though, they aren't the best at portability as they:
A: Can't fold up
B: Leak sound out to your surroundings.
C: Let sound in from your surroundings.
D: (Opinion based) they might look a bit silly with the coloring and all, but they could also be seen as stylish all the same.
Dec 18, 2011 at 3:35 PM Post #3 of 6
Thanks for the feedback.
I loved the quality of the HD555s when I owned them and even on my morning commute I never noticed external sounds getting in, probably because I was listening at quite a high volume, thinking about it I did used to get a lot of weird looks when I would wear them, I used to think it was because of the fact they were massive but being open I can only imagine the volume for them.
I wonder if you could recommend something in a similar price range with similar quality of sound that would be better suited for portability? The only thing I do not want to lose out on is quality, I don't mind having bland looking headphones I was only getting the HD598s because of the experience I had with the HD555s. Preferably with a carry case of some kind, I don't mind if they don't fold up as I was going to place the 598s in a carry bag and put them in my bag.
Thanks again in advance for any helpful feedback.
Dec 18, 2011 at 3:59 PM Post #4 of 6
Unfortunately not. I've only got experience the with Senns and the ATH-M50 (returning those), and I don't want to unintentionally give out mis-informed advice.
The only thing I can say is that closed headphones do isolate better amongst other thing, at the cost of losing the open-aired charactaristics, like a bigger soundstage, airy feeling etc. So I doubt you can get a pair of headphones with a really similar sound signature (I take that is what you mean with sound quality) to the Senn's. Not that other brands are any worse or better, but they're different, and they may or may not appeal to you.
Dec 18, 2011 at 4:17 PM Post #5 of 6
As an owner of them I'll say the plastic they use reminds me of the plastic panels in the insides of a car, but less solid in construction.  Their most fragile part are the upper bridges connecting the drivers to the headband; they're shockingly light and bendable. The cables are thinner than other comparative phones as well.  Just keep them at home, don't move them around too much, don't ever ever drop them (they'll most likely break somewhere) and it should be fine, at least for the first 1-2 years or so.  Longer than that, it's anyone's guess
Dec 19, 2011 at 2:13 AM Post #6 of 6
The flexibility on the bridges is actually a very good thing, as the old models had a very brittle, hard plastic that broke when flexed.  The new plastic on the HD598 is surprisingly impact resistant and flexible, and should last quite a while.  I use mine portable a lot, and while they are not as durable as my mostly metal Beyerdynamic DT1350, they hold up surprisingly well to not so gentle handling.  I am not the easiest on my headphones, and had a pair of HD555 and HD595's break on me on the bridges of the headband, after only a few months of use, but my HD598 is almost 1 year old now, and other than a few minor scratches on the real wood accents, have held up very well, and are still looking wonderful.  I hope this helps.

Users who are viewing this thread