Sennheiser HD 650 vs 600 | Which Headphones Win?

Sennheiser has always been a staple brand name when it comes to the top headphones for audiophiles. The HD 650 and 600 are both flagship models of Sennheiser and while from the same manufacturer, the HD 650 and 600 managed to create a rivalry in the market. Let us find out which one truly is the champ of the HD series with an in-depth look at what the 600 and 650 models have to offer.

Comparison and review of the Sennheiser HD650 vs HD600.

Sennheiser HD 650 vs 600

Sennheiser HD 600 Review

Sennheiser HD 600 Open Back Professional Headphone
Sennheiser HD 600 Open Back Professional Headphone (Image: Amazon)

At a glance, the HD 600 is an over the ear and open-back headphone with suitable sized ear cups that should provide most listeners with a comfortable fit. The high-quality construction of the ear cups is quite apparent thanks to the ample padding and microfiber cover that improves overall comfort by a mile.

The open-back design also means that the HD 600 is specially designed for indoor use. An open-back headphone won’t be appreciated outdoors due to its non-existent noise cancellation capability. The headband might be a bit too tight a fit for some though. That being said, the HD 600 excels in terms of comfort, no questions about that.

When it comes to performance, the HD 600 delivers a solid open-back headphone experience. Sound quality is entirely consistent on all fronts, and the bass maintains that ‘punch’ throughout as well. It manages to keep a balanced mid-range and on-point treble. I would highly recommend this for jazz, classic rock n’ roll, and genres that focus on vocals.

Also, of note is with the headphone’s sound leakage. The HD 600, as stated earlier, uses an open-back design. While the sound leakage does assist in improving the overall listening experience, this means that every person within your immediate vicinity will be able to hear what you are listening to. Sound leakage is still a factor even if you drop the volume to the middle levels. Again, HD 600 is best used indoors.

Another thing of note is that this is a traditional headphone from Sennheiser. The HD 600 is pretty straightforward and does not come with any app support. It is also a wired headphone which might be a downside for casual music lovers but is a preferred feature for audiophiles as it wired headphones could offer more audio accuracy.

Key Features:

  •         Comfortable microfiber-covered earcups.
  •         Neutral sound output capability.
  •         Top-notch soundstage.
  •         Neodymium ferrous magnet system.
  •         OFC copper cable.

Our Rating:

  • Sound Quality: 9/10
  • Bass: 8.5/10
  • Build Quality/Design: 8.5/10
  • Fit/Comfort: 9/10

Who Would This Be Good For?

Sennheiser HD 600 is an excellent choice for critical listening. It delivers neutral and well-balanced frequency response with crisp vocals and an impressive soundstage thanks to its open-back design. While the bass does leave much to be desired, plugging the HD 600 to an amp can significantly improve overall quality – Click here to see our recommended AMPs and DACs for Sennheiser HD headphones.

Sennheiser HD 650 Review

Sennheiser HD 650 Open Back Professional Headphone
Sennheiser HD 650 Open Back Professional Headphone (Image: Amazon)

The first thing users will notice about the HD 650 is with its fit. The headband does not produce too much pressure when compared to the HD 600, which makes this one considerably more comfortable to wear for prolonged periods. This looser headband design does come with a single flaw though, the HD 650 is not as stable to wear and will likely cause some wobbling issues if you wear while moving around.

In terms of construction, the HD 650 does feel a bit hastily assembled. The looser headband fit is a dead giveaway of this. If you plan on wearing it exclusively indoors, then the loose fit won’t be much of a problem, which is why I believe that the HD 650 is designed specifically for indoor use.

Similar to the HD 600, the 650 is another Sennheiser open-back headphone. Sound-wise, the 650 is quite identical to what the 600 delivers. It manages to produce a steady and consistent audio frequency range. The mid-range is where it shines through. This allows the HD 650 to be one of the more versatile headphones in the market today as it can consistently provide neutral sound quality.

The HD 650 excels in producing music from vocal-heavy songs, folk, and classic rock. 

As with the HD 600, the 650’s bass might leave some listeners wanting more. However, the HD 650 does seem to deliver more ‘oomph’ to their sub-bass compared to the HD 600.

Key Features:

  •         Open-back design and high-fidelity stereo headphone.
  •         Comfortable to wear thanks to the elliptical design of the ear cups.
  •         Utilizes unique acoustic silk for higher attenuation of ambient noise.
  •         Can be connected to other Hi-Fi components for an enhanced listening experience.
  •         Uses high-powered neodymium magnets for maximum efficiency.

Our Rating:

  • Sound Quality: 9/10
  • Bass: 9/10
  • Build Quality/Design: 8/10
  • Fit/Comfort: 9.5/10

Who Would This Be Good For?

The Sennheiser HD 650 is not a headphone for casual listeners as it is an open-back headphone designed for critical listening. Like the HD 600, I fear that casual consumers won’t be able to appreciate what the 650 can offer. That being said, as an indoor critical listening headphone, the HD 650 is an excellent choice. As with most open-back headphones, sound leakage will be a prevalent issue which makes the Sennheiser HD 650 a primarily indoor headphone.

The Final Verdict: Which One is Better?

Sennheiser HD 457
The Sennheiser name has been a trademark of quality over the years | Photo Credit: Rodrigo Galindez

The HD 600 and HD 650 are virtually identical on all fronts with just a few key differences to separate one from the other. All in all, the Sennheiser HD 650 manages to pull out the win thanks to its more aggressive bass and brightness.

The HD 650 also offers more comfort and will cause no issues if worn for hours on end. That being said, this can be considered as a split-decision win. The HD 600 is no slouch, and it excels with its neutral, constant, and reliable performance in terms of producing different sounds of audio frequency.

All in all, the deciding factor here will be with the listener and their preferred music genre. If you enjoy listening to songs with a heavier emphasis on bass, then the HD 650 will be able to accommodate your taste. For those who want a more balanced listening experience, the HD 600 is the one for you.

Sennheiser PC360
Every sound enthusiast should have at least one pair of Sennheiser headphones, for work or pleasure | Photo Credit: Won Jae Pablo Kim

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