Sennheiser HD 598 Impressions Thread
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Headstar

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Mine just arrived recently, and because they aren't many reviews, threads or actual photos of the new HD 598's, i decided i'll take a few especially for this community, in order to help the ones that might be interested in this nice pair of cans.
 
First the photos.

 

 

 
Now a short review.
 
The built quality seems excellent. Nice finish, nice touch, no harsh edges, paint its good, and i for one i like the colors. The cable its long, has 3 meters, and its quite thick. Yet its soft and very flexible. I say its a quality cable. Original plug is a 6.3mm, and also came with a 3.5mm adapter. You might want to think at that if you plan using them on digital portable players. While they are powered very nice by one, there's a size issue of the plug + adapter, that makes it look like this. See the photo below.
 

 
Sound quality on them its excellent. Very clean, with sharp vocals, bass is present and goes deep enough, and it never overpowers the voices. Of course as expected they excel on instrumental works, live recordings, classical music, strings, guitars.
Actaully everything i tried sounds nice on them, from Mozart to Michael Jackson and Freddie Mercury to Black Eyed Peas and Alicia Keys. Pink Martini its awesome on them.
 
Their strong point, as in the cheaper HD 448 are the mids. Which are even better than on HD 448. Much improved over the HD 448 are the bass and highs, both being more present with better extension.
 
Sounstage wise they do well. There's a level of separation that's superior to HD 448. In certain songs, on well recorded songs, you will find a clearer difference from the leading vocalist and its backing vocalists. As a certain distance between them. And i learn all these being dependent of what songs you listen, and at what quality, much more than your source or amplifier.
 
While they will shine on proper equipment, they run very well on my hi-fi stereo amplifier and loud enough with good bass from the tiny Trekstor mp3/FLAC player.
 
So, do i recommend them? Yes, definitely!
Does that means i am pleased with everything? No!
 
Why? Because while i am very pleasead with the product, that is and delivers excelent quality, i paid 3 times less for the HD 448 and they gave me an extension cable, a 6.3mm gold plated adapter, and a carrying/protection pouch. With the HD 598 you only have the 3.5mm adapter. Nothing else. So my big complaint its the missing of the HH10 headphone holder, that used to be delivered with the HD 595. Not only the HD 598 are more expensive, having the holder will cost me now an additionaly $25.
 
Disclaimer: If you were too lazy to read everything, the final answer is yes, they worth the money, if you like them buy them!
If you have questions that i could answer, i'll do my best.
 
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Trikky99

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The color combination and design look great in those pictures. How would you say they fair from a Cowon S9 or any average onboard sound card?
 
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Headstar

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They will run ok from a Cowon or a PC, even the onboard ones like Realtek HD. You will get loud enough levels from about everything, mp3 player, pc, mobile phone etc.
 
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I agree with you Headstar. I'm running my HD598's from the onboard Realtek soundcard and it sounds suprisingly good. I'm not particularly fond of the sound from my Nano (gen 4). Seems to be missing bass with the Nano.  I also listen to them on my Denon AVR3300 and they sound great also. These headphones have plenty of bass for me. They have a natural feeling bass, not some overblown sounding bass. I also use them with my Xbox 360 for gaming and they excel at that also. The only thing that I don't like about them is 1) no headphone holder 2) too much plastic for this price.
 
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Trikky99

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Thanks for the quick responses, these may be my next headphones haha.
 
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I doubt this comes as a surprise for most of you, but i have to inform you that my HD 598 have cracked too. In the same place between the H and N (Sennheiser writing) where they usually do. Right now its clearly visible on the left part, but from what i see its happening on the right side too.
 
$300 cans broken after only 8 days of use. Knowing the facts i was expecting it, but not so fast. What more can i say ?
 

 
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tdockweiler

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Can't you do a warranty claim on them? I'm a bit worried about this, but luckily mine are holding up just fine.
 
Quote:
$300 cans broken after only 8 days of use. Knowing the facts i was expecting it, but not so fast. What more can i say ?
 


 
 
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There isn't much i can do. There's no return policy here, i can't get a refund, and from their point of view the product works properly. It is also likely to say they broke of improper use, which is totally untrue, but how can i prove it?
 
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tdockweiler

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Since we now have this thread I guess I'll post in it. I use and like these for gaming and they're good with music too.
I think they get my vote as one of the best headphones under $250 NEW. I don't think they're a good deal at $250, but $170 is perfect for them.
I also just got the HD-650 and have found the HD-598 soundstage much, much better. I hope they do an update on the HD-650 to improve the soundstage.
HD-598 is far better for gaming, but not as good overall for music. The forward mids do make music sound so much better though. Both are a good pair for me.
Thankfully my HD-650 is not the old dark and veiled version. It's actually pretty clear and somewhat bright! Strange huh?
 
BTW the pictures of the HD-598 out of a tiny MP3 player make me sad. Ok, I'm kidding, but check out this chart:
 

 
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I know, they require a far better source for big bass. Usually i keep then on my amplifier (hi-fi stereo amplifier for speakers). Might not be as good as a dedicated amp but far better than the portable sources.
 
All in all i'm happy with how they sound. I only wish they would last in one piece for a much longer time. Audio quality is superb.
 
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Anaxilus

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If you expand them using the main headband then you don't stress that vulnerable point.  You should exchange them at the store and reset your warranty.
 
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Blindness

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Well I was told that in Hungary they replace it without question when the crack reaches the three dots on the left side. So Sennheiser folk seems to be nice here, though I haven't tried it yet and also it doesn't help the fact that the 598s are so badly built.
 
Also, could you people please recommend me an usb dac+amp combo (separate devices are fine too, but I think that way it's more expensive) for the HD 598? Budget is up to 300$. (Well, I'm willing to go to a maximum of 500$ if it really-really worth it, but I'm more comfortable with the 300$ limit.)
 
Some options that I know about:
FiiO E7+E9
HiFiMAN EF2
Fubar III MKII
Audinst hud-mx1
 
Out of these which one should I choose? Unfortunately I don't really have a possibility to try them, so I need your experience here. Or should I go for any other option I'm not aware of atm?
 
I'd really appreciate more than one person's opinion to have a more general view of things. Thank you!
 
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Quote:
Well I was told that in Hungary they replace it without question when the crack reaches the three dots on the left side. So Sennheiser folk seems to be nice here, though I haven't tried it yet and also it doesn't help the fact that the 598s are so badly built.
 
Also, could you people please recommend me an usb dac+amp combo (separate devices are fine too, but I think that way it's more expensive) for the HD 598? Budget is up to 300$. (Well, I'm willing to go to a maximum of 500$ if it really-really worth it, but I'm more comfortable with the 300$ limit.)
 
Some options that I know about:
FiiO E7+E9
HiFiMAN EF2
Fubar III MKII
Audinst hud-mx1
 
Out of these which one should I choose? Unfortunately I don't really have a possibility to try them, so I need your experience here. Or should I go for any other option I'm not aware of atm?
 
I'd really appreciate more than one person's opinion to have a more general view of things. Thank you!

If you are a laptop user, CEntrance DACPort.
 
 
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Hi Headstar,
 
We've changed the material of the headband of the HD 598. You may bring in your HD 598 to the nearest Sennheiser service centre together with your receipt / proof of purchase and they'll provide you with a replacement unit.
 
Cheers!
 
Quote:
There isn't much i can do. There's no return policy here, i can't get a refund, and from their point of view the product works properly. It is also likely to say they broke of improper use, which is totally untrue, but how can i prove it?
 
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Well, no, I'd use it at home, with my PC, so size, looks and such doesn't matter, I'm looking for the best result (SQ) for the bucks. But I was made an offer I can't refuse, so I'll buy an used Hifiman and see how it goes. Thanks anyways!
 
Quote:
If you are a laptop user, CEntrance DACPort.
 


 
Now that's really great to hear, I guess that's some "worldwide" change, ie. I can do the same in Europe (Hungary), right?


Quote:
Hi Headstar,
 
We've changed the material of the headband of the HD 598. You may bring in your HD 598 to the nearest Sennheiser service centre together with your receipt / proof of purchase and they'll provide you with a replacement unit.
 
Cheers!
 


 
 
 
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