Sennheiser is a leading-industry brand when it comes to headphones.
The flagship models we are comparing today, the HD 600 and HD 650, justify the reputation of Sennheiser perfectly, the listening experience they offer is simply wonderful.
HD 600 made its debut back in 1997 and completely stomped the competition back then, topping all the charts.
While the HD 650 entered the market as the successor in 2003 and pretty much did the same.
Indeed, they are showing their old age but they are not planning to lose against newer models, they keep giving the competition a hard time. They still remain a pair of fun sounding headphone.
Think about this, It’s 2022 and I am talking/writing about them, no doubt, that the HD 600-series lineup is one of the most successful headphone lineups in history.
Meet the Greatest Sennheisers
Sennheiser HD 600
These headphones are purpose-built to make everything else vanish right when the listener presses “play”. They are made of such a system that involves an acoustically transparent open-back earcup that lets every single sound wave expand freely. Due to its specialized acoustic silk that controls airflow, its 42mm driver is free from turbulence and distortion.
These headphones come with luxurious comfort and lasting durability that only audiophiles demand. These headphones reproduce mastering-grade sound independent of room acoustics or loudspeaker positioning by reducing variances between left and right channels and that’s how they guarantee a pristine personal sound experience.
Sennheiser HD 650
These headphones literally say, if the music is what matters the most to you, then you should purchase me, that’s their love language towards you. Sennheiser HD 650 are not only the definition of smooth, but they also are the high definition of everything that makes you experience an amazing playtime. The luxurious construction, the expertly balanced acoustics, and the timeless design of these headphones make the audiophiles fall in love with them.
Sennheiser HD 650 has a signature sound and that’s the signature sound and that is in-house acoustics. Everything about these headphones was made by adding more to everything that a set of headphones should have, such as more time for blissful listening, more musicality, and more details discovered.
These headphones guarantee you extreme comfort! Velour pads to the earcup grille pattern, are crafted to guarantee a next-level personal sound experience.
Key Specifications of the Two Headphones
Below you will find the key specifications of both these headphones. So you can find out how the two headphones compare to each other and other headphones in general.
|Name of the product||Sennheiser HD 600||Sennheiser HD 650|
|Impedance||300 Ohm||300 Ohm|
|Frequency response||12Hz – 39000 kHz||12 – 39000 Hz|
|Weight||315g (11.1 Oz.)||370g (13 Oz.)|
|Termination||3.5mm with 1/4″ Adapter||3.5mm with 1/4″ Adapter|
|Primary use||Mixing, Mastering, Reference, Critical Listening||Casual Listening, Fun|
|Material||Metal Grilles, Carbon Fiber, Velour Ear Pads, Plastic||OFC copper (Kevlar Reinforced), Velour, Plastic|
The Battle of Siblings: Sennheiser HD 600 Vs. Sennheiser HD 650
As you can notice, above I mentioned some of the most important features, the key specifications that these two headphones own, but still there are some other things that deserve to be mentioned and everyone cares about. Those things mostly include sound quality, performance, built quality, battery life, comfort, and so on.
In this article you can find a detailed comparison of these two amazing headphones through the main things that I just mention, so let’s start with design, and then we will continue with the other features of those two headphones.
Being brothers, or say, twins, both of them pretty much sport the same design. They both have a dynamic and open-back design and surprisingly enough, identical weight at 260 grams.
HD 600 is a mix of black and blue that rewards in a marble finish. It sure screams, “90’s headphones” since the marble look is considered outdated. On the outer side of the headband, you will be greeted by the Sennheiser logo, which makes the headphones stand out in a way. To be honest, even though many people dislike their “outdated design”, I find it pleasing and vintage. As for the quality, It is a product that lives up to its age, it is solid and can take a beating.
While it’s brother, the HD 650 comes in a greyish metal headband with black padding on the inner side. People find this color combination more subtle and the metal borders on the outer side of the ear cups make it more elegant.
Comfortability and earcups are pretty much the same in both headphones. The headbands are adjustable, and they can suit all head sizes.
Ear cups are equally large, making them ideal for any size ear and they clamp down perfectly, while the good quality padding ensures that the ears won’t interfere with the drivers, and at the same time, they are extremely comfortable. So yeah, we gotta commend Sennheiser for what they did with the ear cups.
A field where I think they lack quite a lot is noise isolation.
Those are not noise cancelling headphones by any means and it’s not because they don’t feature an ANC mode, but due to their open-back design. Still, this is something in favor of some people due to the airy sound and neutral sound that comes with an open-back design.
As you noticed the comfortability and build quality are pretty much the same, color is only what differs them.
In my opinion, I opt for the HD 600 design, since I am a nostalgic person, and I like vintage stuff, the marble look, and the Sennheiser lettering – take me on a nostalgic trip.
But most people opt for the 650 HD, based on my research and what I’ve heard.
HD 650 is the winner design-wise, it has a modern and elegant look that can blend anywhere.
Still, if we go in depth look both are headphones with a good build quality
Both headphones, the HD 600 and 650 come well-packaged and in a high-quality foam hinged box.
Both headphones come with a proprietary cable that fits at the end of the right and left ear cups. What I liked here, is that the 600 HD includes one of the cables in red and the other one is black, so you can easily tell which end of the cable should go to which cup.
That said, the cables come in great quality and are thin straight, and made to last.
Both headphones come sporting a 3.5mm adapter that has a termination of ¼. While the cable length on both devices is 3 meters.
As I mentioned above the red cable found in 600 HD, sadly is not found in the 650. The HD 650 has both ends in black and you might struggle sometimes finding the right cable for the right ear cup.
With this being said, in this aspect, this gives the 600 slightly an edge over its successor.
There is not much to be said about the connectivity part, since both of these headphones don’t have a Bluetooth connection and they are wired headphones.
This means that they have no latency since they have a wired design and it also means that they’re limited by the range of the provided cables.
Their wired design makes them suitable for gaming and home-theater use. As people say, in every bad, there is something good!
The sound quality aspect is what separates them, while none of them are better than the other, they exceed more in some specific frequency responses.
First thing first, when it comes to audio devices and good sounds, Sennheiser is always there at the top, with a great frequency response and a sound signature that will benefit most studio professionals.
Let’s start with the Sennheiser HD 600, for example, the HD 600 sounds more natural without any kind of coloration. Meaning that it gives the music a natural feel, just as it is without boosting a specific range.
On the other hand, the HD 650 provides brighter sounds, making it better on classical music.
Besides that the 650 also has better imaging, meaning it offers better surrounding sound quality and a more relaxed sound.
While you listen to vocals, you will be more than satisfied with the HD 600. The vocals on 600 sound better and emphasized, it even isolates the vocals so you can enjoy them at maximum, so yeah listening to acoustic music with them is a dream, but I wish they had more bass.
So yeah the mid range on those headsets is a tad better compared to the mid range of its sibling.
Moving to the other side the 650 has a darker treble that might benefit hip hop lovers more.
So yeah if you want a bit darker sound signature, the 650 will be there to reward you with a great listening experience.
Overall, if you ever owned a pair of Sennheiser headphone, or at least heard them once in your life you know that those headphones are great and sound better than most other headphones at this price range.
So we arrived at the bass while they have a great overall frequency range, bass is something they suffer at. Don’t worry, it’s not the end of the world.
Both headphones perform decently in Bass, but I don’t recommend them for bass heads. Neither of them has sub bass, which is crucial.
Nevertheless, the mid-bass is quite nice and you can hear the drums and reverberations clearly and smoothly. In a way, the mid-bass makes up for it sub bass
It is safe to say that both these headphones are lacking bass response.
Well, I am hard-pressed to find a difference here but I can separate them.
For example, if you like listening to vocals like Adele, 600 is the way to go. Also, its natural sound nature, makes the 600 ideal for studio use, if you monitor sounds or do professional work in general.
While 650 is ideal for audiophiles who like listening to music while doing daily tasks. Also if you listen to a lot of EDM/Techno, I mean electronic music in general, 650 is a splendid choice. If EDM is all you listen to, you can get a pair of headphones for edm music instead.
Let me just say that the quality that these headphones bring to you, doesn’t come at a cheap price. Both of these headphones can be purchased at quite a high price. They do not differ much when it comes to their price.
One important thing that you need to know is that their price does not interfere with their features, which means the choice would just depend on your preferences for sound and look and feel.
If you are looking to purchase without a specific reason, so if you are after more fun than critical listening, in that case, the higher price tag is justified, and in that case, you go for the cheaper version of these Sennheiser.
So we arrived at the end of the article let me say this straight away those are great value headphones. Their longevity on the market for such a long time is a testimony to that.
After all, they didn’t dominate the market for anything all these years. There’s a saying that I think will suit this Sennheiser lineup a lot:
“Beware of an old man in a profession where men usually die young”
Both headphones are equally good but In the end, it all boils down to your preferences and the type of music you are listening to. Nevertheless, nothing changes the fact that you will listen to good music with those headphones.
Sennheiser is a very versatile brand, offering headphones in any price range and category. For example, the Sennheiser HD 280 Pro made it the best option in our studio headphones under $100 list.
As mentioned before, the HD 600 has a vintage/old design while offering great comfort, and natural sound without any enhancement. While the HD650 offers the same comfort but in a modern and elegant way and performs better in the electronic music field.
Just like Sennheiser, there are also other well known brands in the audio world, like Audio Technica. Audio Technica besides headphones also produces microphones. Check the difference between Audio Technica USB and XLR . Another well known brand is Yamaha, which besides headphones also produces speakers. Check the difference between Yamaha HS5 and HS7.
Shure is also a well know nn the audio worsl, and you can check the comparison between Shure SM48 and Shure SM58.
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