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Sennheiser HD 598 Impressions Thread

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by Headstar, Feb 22, 2011.
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  1. ludvigrollover
    Woah, is that thing for real? $1300 gadget to translate between a couple digital signaling formats, not even a DAC? A couple of standard chips on a breakout board and connectors in an ugly case?
    Why would anyone buy that thing instead of better headphones (this is still the HD-598 thread, right?). Or the best 100 CDs in their favorite genre of music?
  2. deepfreeze
    I think even the most enthusiastic among us will concede that there's a tremendous amount of snakeoil ******** in this hobby. Buyer beware.
    Yethal and ElMarcado like this.
  3. biggbenn74
    Ladies and gentlemen, they have arrived. I have not stopped listening to these since I took the pictures over an hour ago. They sound incredible. I have never picked up a pair of headphones and started to fall in love with them this quickly before. As some of you may or may not know, I own quite a few headphones in and around the price range of the HD598's, and upon first impressions, these are either matching, or beating the performance of them all, even un-amped! I'll report back soon with more in depth research. (And more pics!)
    mikoss and ElMarcado like this.
  4. mikoss
    Because it's arguably one of the best USB - optical converters and could possibly improve the sound. (Probably be reducing jitter). I was trying to allude to this earlier, but optical interfaces vary almost as much as USB implementations. Someone was asking about using the Modi 2 for the 598's, which is a good idea, I just also recommended the Wyrd- Modi 2 uber. Here's some info http://www.head-fi.org/t/693798/thoughts-on-a-bunch-of-dacs-and-why-delta-sigma-kinda-sucks-just-to-get-you-to-think-about-stuff

    And yeah, plenty of snake oil in the industry... the OR5 is definitely not snake oil. In any case, I think it's expensive and just brought up the Wyrd.
  5. DVDIT
    I need some amp recommendation fast. I received the Sennheiser RS 180 a few days ago as a gift and I am liking it a lot so far. I find the bass a little lacking, especially since I am using this for TV and movie watching late nights. I asked for Sennheiser HD 598 and a portable amp for father's day, which is just two days away. I am thinking of getting either the JDS labs O2, the Fiio E12 Mont Blanc but I am not sure which pairs well for the HD 598. I need an amp can drive HD 598 and HD  600 (down the road) effortlessly and I want tight and articulate deep bass. Bass boost that adds the right amount of bass without being overwhelming is a must. I want the sound to be smooth and mellow and not on your face kind of presentation, don't like bright sound. I want huge soundstage and excellent detail retrieval. Max price for the amp is $200. Sound quality is very important so if I have to wait to get a used amp for $200, I am open to other amp recommendation. Thank you for your input.
  6. TsukiNick
    I personally find the Magni more than enough for anything, it's more powerful than the O2 and I personally think it looks a lot better.  (Looks matter)  Honestly you aren't really going to get more articulate bass or anything with a different amp.  If you do want a nice hardware EQ in a DAC/Amp then a FiiO X3 actually can drive things like the HD650 quite well (I'm sure someone will say otherwise though) and lets you adjust the Bass and treble with hardware EQ.  Drives anything I've thrown at it with ease including the strangely hard to drive Q701s which have low sensitivity and low impedance which is one of the worst loads. 
    And now the Magni 2 has the gain switch making it better for getting more usable range from the volume pot.
    So pick something with power and looks nice, sad to break it to you, most of the nice amps/dacs sound the same (if buit well) and just look different.

    Of course tubes will sound a little different but that's another story.
    If you don't like how a headphone sounds to start with don't keep it and wait for some magical burn-in or some "amp synergy" to be your deus ex machina.
  7. DVDIT
    The Magni look very attractive and far below my $200 budget. Not sure my choice of the word "articulate" was the right one to described the bass I am looking for. I want the amp to give me more extended bass if possible, tight not bloated and with more impact. You are saying an amp can't give me that? I have the Fiio E5 and while the bass boost adds quite a good amount of bass, it is not well behaved. I listen to low to moderate volume. 
  8. deepfreeze
    If bass is what you're looking for, you have likely bought the wrong headphone. The HD598 is a great headphone that is good at a lot of things but punchy bass isn't one of them, and I think trying to substitute for that with a bass boost is a futile endeavor. The bass that is there IS "tight and articulate" but I suspect it's not going to knock your socks off no matter how much you boost it.
  9. DVDIT
    No, I don't believe so. These are the right headphone for me. I am not a bass-head but the bass from these cans is a bit weak and I suspect a slight bass boost that is available from some amps will fill the gap quite well for me.
  10. Frosty3258

    I may have to agree with the others on this thread. I love the 598 but with movies and for when I wanted a more "fun" sound sig. I ended up getting another phone. The 598s are great and have great quality of bass but the quantity and extension may not be enough for some. Bass boost functions on an amp such as the E12 (I had the e11) will boost the mid bass the most. Using the boost function on the E11 with the 598 I could get well over neutral bass quantity, especially with it set on 2 but the bass quality was less. It got boomy and bled into the mids making them sound not as intimate. The E11 gave them impact, you could feel it more but I didn't notice better extension. If it was there but you had to strain to hear it, it came through better but if it missed it before it still missed it.

    Edit: Because of a bad sound card in my computer I got an odac/o2 and still love my 598s coming out of it.
  11. DVDIT

    Thanks for your input. Which phone did you get to use for movies? What is your overall take on it?
  12. TsukiNick
    Bass boost doesn't fair well for the HD598, this headphone absolutely distorts with any device upping the bass more than a couple dB.  Even the AKG with the bass mod seemed to fair better.  This is not a headphone for bass at all, if you want a slightly bassier sound (slightly) then HD558 would probably be a better choice and you'd save a couple bucks (if you haven't bought the HD598 yet)
  13. Arsis
    I respectfully disagree. I use the bass boost on my e10 and can add ample sub boost with software eq with no problem. You have to remember to turn down the software pregain to avoid digital clipping.:beerchug:
  14. TsukiNick

    Oh I boost bass with analog EQ if I do EQ.  I remember it distorting like crazy when I had these and put the volume up to probably around 80+dB.  So no clipping here, it was like the driver was becoming a really uneven surface forget what that's called.
  15. Arsis
    I think the technical term you're looking for is "farty" haha! Yea it depends on the volume. I'm a studio engineer so I've always been careful with my hearing. I listen loud at times but not excessive and not for long periods. To me it responds well to eq but its never going to going to give you that pressurized, high SPL feel of something like an M50 (which is extremely overrated IMO, hate it).
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