Drop, formerly known as Massdrop, is one of the best places to get high-quality audio equipment such as headphones, DACs, and headphone amplifiers. They have collaborations with highly regarded companies such as Sennheiser, AKG, and Beyerdynamic that help bring their mid-tier or flagship products at a lower and more affordable price point without sacrificing build or sound quality.
They have also created original products like the Drop Panda and Massdrop Plus that are highly competent with the rest of the market. Drop initially sold products through group buys but has now established the Drop Studio where you could readily buy their original and licensed products.
Their lineup has vastly increased and now has a vast selection. If you are just starting and are unsure of which product to buy, then we have the perfect guide for you. For starters who want to get the best value for their money, the Sennheiser HD 58X is the best one to get. For the best open-back experience, we highly recommend the Drop Aeon Flow Open X. And for wireless enthusiasts, the Drop Panda is the way to go.
Those are only a few models in Drop’s vast lineup. We have more in store for you, so you should keep on reading the rest of the article.
Best DROP Headphones
Drop X Sennheiser HD6XX
One of Drop/Massdrop’s first well-known collaborations was with Sennheiser. Together, they were able to bring the legendary Sennheiser HD650 to a broader audience by rebranding it to the HD6XX, which significantly reduced the price. This new entry-level price point has helped introduce a new type of audience into the audiophile world.
The Sennheiser HD6XX has managed to cut no corners in this model. The signature build of the Sennheiser HD650 that has been known to last for decades has been kept intact. It is made of a high-quality plastic material that has replaceable parts that can be ordered directly from Sennheiser.
In terms of the sound quality of the HD6XX, it features the mid-centric sound that has been the famous party trick of the HD600 series. Unlike its predecessor, the HD 600, it does not sound too analytical since it has slightly more bass. It does, however, result in a darker sound signature.
Highs are also smooth without losing its quality. In comparison, no headphone that retails in this price point can even begin to touch the technical capabilities of the HD6XX except for Drop’s very own HD58X, which we will also be discussing.
The HD6XX does, however, also carry the downsides of the HD650. One of those downsides is the intimate soundstage. It is wider than most closed-back headphones or even lower-end open-back headphones, but it is far from achieving a speaker-like experience like its successor, the Sennheiser HD800s.
Nevertheless, the Sennheiser HD6XX carries a tried and tested design that has an excellent performance in different tasks such as gaming, professional audio production, and casual listening. If you are looking for an all in one daily driver pair of headphones that has excellent technicalities, then the Sennheiser HD6XX is the best pair to get.
Just remember to pair this with a headphone amplifier since it has an impedance of 300-ohms. You can learn all about headphone impedance and power requirements in our dedicated article. You can also find the best headphone amplifiers for the HD6XX in our dedicated article.
This is the headphone for those looking for a daily driver and all-rounder headphones. From music production to gaming, this headphone can do it all.
If you want more bass in your headphones, then this may not exactly be the best fit for you. Also, if you don’t own a headphone amplifier, then you won’t be able to get the best sound out of the HD6XX.
Drop X Sennheiser HD58X Jubilee
Another popular model from Drop and Sennheiser is the HD58X Jubilee. This headphone is a revival of the classic HD580, the headphone that started the HD600 series. It is updated to meet the modern standards and is a lot closer to the rest of the Sennheiser HD6XX series headphones.
Once again, it has a lot of qualities that make it punch way above its price point and allows it to compete with headphones twice or even thrice its price. It has the same form factor and build-quality as the Sennheiser HD6XX with a few distinctions.
The biggest differentiating factors include a different color scheme and grill design. The different grill design is due to the modified driver that is being used here. It now has an impedance of 150-ohms, which allows it to be used even without a headphone amplifier.
The sound signature is also a bit different compared to the HD6XX. There is a slight mid-bass bump in this model that makes it a more energetic and fun sounding headphone. Aside from the low end and a few differences in the high-end, it mostly sounds similar to the HD6XX.
In some ways, it could be considered a less accurate and less analytical version of the HD6XX. It does not mean it is a worse headphone. It just has a different flavor of the famous HD600 series sound signature.
Imaging and soundstage are mostly the same as the HD6XX. This means that soundstage is intimate but realistic, and imaging is fairly accurate. The imaging makes it an excellent pair of gaming headphones. A ModMic can then be attached to the HD58X or HD6XX to transform them into a gaming headset.
Overall, if you do not own a headphone amplifier and you want a slightly more energetic and fun-sounding headphone, then the HD58X is a great headphone for you. Considering that the difference between these and the HD6XX is not night and day, this is arguably the better value headphone.
For anyone starting in the audio hobby, or for anyone who is on a tight budget, then this is the best deal for you. It manages to bring the sound of the HD600 series at an extremely affordable price point.
For those looking for more detail in the high-end, then this headphone may not be for you. Check out the HD6XX or the Aeon Flow Open X instead.
Drop X AKG K7XX
The main competitor to Drop’s highly acclaimed HD6XX series of headphone collaborations is non-other than their own AKG collaboration, the Drop K7XX. Like the Sennheiser HD6XX, the K7XX is a legendary professional open-back headphone that has been used in countless studios. It is based on the K702 65th Anniversary Edition.
Both the K7XX and HD6XX are located at the same price point, so it is natural for them to be competitors. However, the sound signature of these two headphones is completely different. The HD6XX is a more intimate sounding open-back headphone with a mid-forward sound and great imaging. The K7XX, on the other hand, has a wide soundstage and more neutral sound but slightly less accurate imaging.
This makes the K7XX immersive for gaming and movies. However, some users still prefer the Drop HD58X and HD6XX for competitive gaming since pinpointing audio is more accurate on those headphones.
As mentioned earlier, the K7XX has a more neutral sound signature compared to the HD6XX models. This makes the K7XX an excellent reference pair for audio productions and for critical listening. It is, after all, based on a headphone that retails for twice the price of the Drop K7XX.
Overall, if you need a wide sounding and versatile open-back headphone that can be used with different applications, the K7XX is a solid option. It is also based on a tried and tested design, so you won’t be disappointed with its performance.
Like the Sennheiser HD6XX and 58X, this headphone can do it all. For those who prefer a wide soundstage and a more neutral sound, this is the one for you.
The imaging is not as good as the HD6XX. This is not the best headphones for competitive gaming.
Drop X Beyerdynamic DT177X Go
Drop’s main identity in the audiophile realm is their collaborations and ability to rebrand higher-end products into more affordable ones without sacrificing the build or the sound. However, every now and then, they also modify products that help identify them as unique products of the Drop Studio. One of those products is the DT 177X Go, the result of their collaboration with Beyerdynamic that transforms the highly regarded Beyerdynamic DT 1770 Pro into a low-impedance headphone.
The original DT 1770 Pro is a closed-back 250-ohm headphone that was designed for professional use. However, like most Beyerdynamic products, they were tuned so well that they were loved by music enthusiasts and gamers alike. Its bass response was highly-regarded as the best in its premium price range.
Now, Drop has once again significantly reduced the price. But this time, they have also lowered the impedance down to just 30-ohms. If you are unfamiliar with impedance, we have greatly covered this in our headphone impedance guide. The gist of it is that lowering the impedance of the headphone is synonymous with lowering the power requirements.
The Drop 177X Go can now be powered by virtually any device, from smartphones to laptops. It can be used with amplifiers and DAC/Amps, but it already sounds great without any additional gear. Also, unlike with the DT 770 Pro’s lower impedance version, this headphone does not sound like a lower-end or downsized version of the DT 1770 Pro.
Drop has managed to capture the magic and the sound signature of the original DT 1770 Pro. Despite changing the impedance, there is no loss in sound quality. With its excellent tuning and imaging and soundstage, the DT 177X Go is a very versatile closed-back headphone that can virtually do anything.
For portable users or for anyone who is a fan of bass, this is the perfect headphone for you.
For those looking for the most accurate sound for productions, this may not be for you. The closed-back design naturally presents problems in terms of accuracy.
Massdrop X Sennheiser PC37X
Sennheiser’s early attempts at making gaming headphones resulted in models such as the Game One and Game Zero. While these were not very creative designs since they were just rebranded Sennheiser’s studio headphones (specifically the HD 598) with an added microphone.
These were, however, undeniably the best performing gaming headset available at the time. The price was not exactly affordable, but it reflected the superior quality that it had over typical gaming headsets. Sennheiser has then created the GSP series as their dedicated gaming series, which had different price points.
Despite the new models, the original Game One (and the PC 373 before it) still had a massive following. That is why Drop has taken the opportunity to collaborate once again with Sennheiser to bring the Game One to a wider audience. This resulted in the birth of the PC37X.
The PC37X features an all-new black color scheme with minor Massdrop brandings. Like most Drop collaborations, the sound has remained unchanged. The imaging is superior to most gaming headsets, which makes this a great pair for competitive titles such as FPS.
The other notable feature of the PC37X is its microphone. The Game One set the standard for gaming headset microphones. The PC37X follows suit by implementing the same microphone that can be used both in in-game chat or live streaming.
For its asking price, the PC37X is very hard to beat. It has all the essential features of a gaming headset, such as excellent sound reproduction and a quality microphone. If you are a professional or a competitive gamer, then this is the gaming headset for you.
This is a headphone that is built for competitive gaming. If you need a headset for detecting footsteps and other sound queues, this is an excellent choice.
If you want a headphone for critical listening and do not need the microphone, check out the HD6XX and HD58X instead.
Drop X Dan Clark Audio Aeon Flow Open X
Dan Clark Audio initially made waves when they were able to challenge the planar magnetic industry leaders, Hifiman and Audeze. They were initially called MrSpeakers and later rebranded to Dan Clark Audio.
Like most collaborations, Drop is introducing Dan Clark Audio’s products to the mainstream market by bringing them to yet another affordable price point. This time, the product that they are introducing is the Aeon Flow Open X. This is a planar magnetic headphone that is widely considered to be an improvement of the beloved Sennheiser HD650/HD600 series.
It takes the sound signature of the well-loved HD650 and eliminates its weaknesses. The planar magnetic drivers add more definition and presence to the low end. The highs are also better extended than the HD650. And of course, the sound stage is wider.
The Aeon Flow is also available in a closed-back model. This takes the Open’s sound signature but further adds sub-bass and has better isolation due to the design. Drop has not yet made their version of this model. We may soon see this due to the Aeon Flow Open X’s popularity.
Overall, if you are a fan of the HD6XX sound signature and want a true upgrade, then the Aeon Flow Open X is your best bet. Considering that the Aeon Flow Open X is almost twice the price of Drop’s model, this is a very good deal.
For fans of the HD6XX and want an upgrade with a similar sound signature, then this is the headphone for you.
This headphone is not the most neutral sounding. It can be used for productions, but it is not entirely accurate.
Drop + THX Panda
The world of wireless audio is mostly occupied by consumer-grade products. This category has been pioneered by the Beats Studio and Solo series, which is why most headphones that are trying to compete here are bassy and consumer sounding headphones. However, Drop has managed to create an original product that is aimed towards the audio enthusiast market.
The Drop x THX Panda carries over the various innovations brought upon by Bluetooth headphones such as the APTX and LDAC codec for lower latency. It also incorporates efficient controls by utilizing a joystick for volume control, track selection, etc.
But the feature that separates the Drop Panda from the likes of top models like the Sony WH1000XM3 and Sennheiser Momentum 3 Wireless is its sound quality. The Drop Panda utilizes planar magnetic drivers that are based on the Oppo PM series drivers (found on models such as the Oppo PM1).
This arguably more technical and superior driver has the ability to reproduce a more detailed sound. Low notes have more power in them and have that slam that is often associated with planar drivers. They also do not distort as the volume increases.
The high-end is smooth but does not lose detail or clarity. Mids are detailed not recessed, unlike most wireless headphones. This is a pleasing sound signature that can be used in extended listening sessions.
Unlike other wireless headphones like Sony and Sennheiser’s offerings, this pair does not have an Active Noise Cancelling feature. It also does not have an auto-pause feature when the headphone is removed or a dedicated assistant button.
This is purely a wireless headphone built for audio enthusiasts. If sound quality is your priority and you don’t mind not having extra features, then this is the wireless headphone for you.
If you are looking for an audiophile experience on wireless headphones, then this is the headphone to get.
This is not for listeners who prioritize functionality over sound quality as it lacks features such as an assistant button or ANC.
Stephen is a musician, cinematographer, and headphone enthusiast who is passionate about reviewing audio equipment. He has been playing guitar for at least a decade, which introduced him to professional recording equipment such as headphones and in-ear monitors. With the help of reviews and online content, he was able to learn the ins and outs of the hobby. His goal is to give back to the community by providing quality content to help others enjoy the beautiful (and expensive) world of audio.
Favorite Headphones: Sennheiser HD660s