Best Sennheiser headphones for Gaming and Music?

Feb 20, 2018
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I've only owned the Game One's and currently own the HD 559s but am not a huge fan of them. Does anyone have recommendations that are under the sennheiser brand name? I play competitive games, listen to Hip-hop/Rap. As much as I'd love to get the 800s they are far to expensive for my tastes.

Headphones I've been looking at:

HD 600
HD 650
HD 598
HD 700
 
Feb 20, 2018
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Are they any good for games though and provide a wider sound stage then the others? I ask because I've heard the 598s, 558 have a greater sound stage then the 600/650.
 

anort3

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Yep. I haven't heard the 700 but it has a huge soundstage I believe as well. The only place the 598 beats the 600 or 650 is soundstage. The 650s are what I game with and I own the 598, 600 and 650. The 650 has a larger soundstage than the 600 and more perceived bass. I game quite a bit although it's almost always single player stuff and I find the sound quality of the 650s is more important to me then the 598s soundstage. 600/650 is a huge sound quality bump over the 598 and they're more comfortable. Not that the 598s are bad. They were my first 'good' headphone.


Now if you just wanted some hip hop headphones.... https://www.massdrop.com/buy/fostex-x-massdrop-th-x00-purpleheart-headphones
 
Feb 20, 2018
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I'm quite soundstage orientated i'd say since I play a lot of games that require hearing where people or noises are coming from. I'm not a super bass head but I do enjoy balanced bass. Between the 650 and 598 is there a large difference between clarity and imaging?

Edit: What amp/dac do you use to power your 650s?
 

anort3

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The 650 does everything better. The 598s have very little bass. If rap and hip hop are all you listen to I can't see the 598 being satisfying.

I have an Asus Xonar STX. It has a very clean, very powerful headphone amp and high quality DAC. Just slightly bright tinted. I use it for gaming and music.

https://www.asus.com/us/Sound-Cards/Xonar_Essence_STX/

Then I have a Mayflower O2/ODAC Rev. B for just music. Very neutral and clean.

https://mayflowerelectronics.com/desktop-objective2-with-odac-rev-b/

I also have a Fiio Q1 that is slightly less resolving and darker tinted. It will drive my 600s and 650s plenty loud though.


The imaging on the Fostex variants is actually excellent. I have the Mahogany version.
 
Feb 20, 2018
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I listen to almost every genre of music but hip-hop/rap, indie rock, and what not. I don't necessarily need crazy bass. Considered the 598SE since I heard its soundstage was wider, things were as clear or close to as clear to 600 series. A reduction in bass wouldn't kill me. Would just like something relatively easy to drive on my PC. I think i'll hold off on the HD 600 series and up until I have more money for the amps/dacs as well. I could be them now but I fear I will be wasting money. Sorry for being so indecisive, I appreciate your help on my journey for some nice cans. I recall trying the 600s and 650s in store but they sounded quite similiar to me, except the 600s were more comfy and had a brighter sound to them. I play a lot of competitive games so maybe that's good for me.

Also, the headband on the k702 seem like that'd be really uncomfortable for long hours.
 

anort3

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Massdrop has sold over 20,000 ( there's a red one too ) of the K7xx so they're doing something right. They need an amp/DAC as much as the 600/650 do though.

The 598s are good cans, even really good but they aren't in the same league as the 6xx series. However as you're finding the 6xx series is expensive to get into. The 650s are considered some of the best scaling headphones on the market. So if you have a $1000 amp they'll reward it. On the flipside my $50 Fiio Q1 will drive them.

HD 598 - Big soundstage very little bass. Overall good for gaming and music. Don't especially need an amp/DAC but will reward them.

HD 600 - Intimate soundstage, neutral, slightly mid forward with amazing detail. Bass but not much. Rock, classical, folk, jazz ect. ( my personal favorites, when they sound good they sound GREAT ) There's a reason these have been on the market since 1993.

HD 650 -Wider soundstage than the 600, warmer with more bass extension. More laid back. Still mid forward with ALMOST the same ( and different ) detail as the 600s. More forgiving of bad recordings than the 600s. Work with a wider variety of music. Same as above but add newer pop, EDM, hip hop etc. The 650 was Sennheiser's flagship for years.



 
Feb 20, 2018
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Thank you so much for your help and the detail analysis of the headphones I am looking into. I'll probably end up getting the 650s or the 598SE's since they are particular good for games. I fear that eventually I'll end up with these two or more haha. Are there any DACS/Amp combos you'd recommend? Is there any good ones that could be used mobile and for my PC?

I've heard good things about the Mayflower Objective 2 AMP+DAC
https://mayflowerelectronics.com/objective2-and-odac-rev-b-dac-amplifier/
 

anort3

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For music the O2/ODAC or a Schiit stack ( Magni 3/Modi 2 ). Since gaming is a priority maybe a high end soundcard although you lose portability.

https://www.asus.com/us/Sound-Cards/Essence_STX_II/

The soundcard gives you virtual surround for gaming as well as movie, HiFi, etc modes.
 
Feb 28, 2018
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I currently own the HD 600 as well as the HD 700 powered by the Schiit Stack (Magni 3/ Modi 2 Uber).

Hd 600- The "reference" cans that all headphones are compared to. Honestly the best value for hi-fi. Although they will not excite you, but they will play well with everything, and will not color it. Very comfy and non-fatiguing. Does well with all genres. Not the best option for gaming. The HD 598s (which I also had at one point) are better for gaming than the HD 600s Id say bc of their larger soundstage.

HD 700- okay you may not want to hear this, but these are AMAZING for gaming and movies. These headphones are one of those "you love it or you absolutely hate it". Incredibly comfy for long sessions, and the soundstage is absolutely breathtaking. I tested them out with the Witcher 3 and I was awed. They are so immersive. I am still within my return period for amazon, but I may just keep these for gaming. As for music, well if you listen to anything with alot of treble like the cymbal/high hat in rock and metal....well it may sound annoying. They reveal everything and they have a treble spike around 6k. Very comfortable headphone that is fatiguing with rock music. Best headphone for gaming ive used (ive used the game ones (essentially 558s, 598s, 600s, 650s, and cloud alphas). Id like to add that cloud alphas are so amazing for their price. not the greatest for music, but they do a fine job.

 

anort3

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If I was going to drop $500 it would be on the 660S. As you say the 700 is love it or hate it. The 660S takes the 700 driver and retunes it and puts it in the 600/650 chassis. Pretty much all the reviews are quite positive other than it's such a small 'upgrade' from the 600/650 it's not worth the extra money. I'll have to own some at some point when the price drops. :p
 

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