Based in Germany, Sennheiser is well-known for manufacturing quality studio monitoring headphones and microphones. The brand has long been known for introducing pioneering products, including their 1968 release of the first open-back headphones. This had a large impact on the quality of headphone monitoring, and since then they have continued to innovate and currently sport one of the widest range of quality headphone products available. The Sennheiser HD 650 studio monitoring headphones, which is what we are reviewing here, are near the top of the Sennheiser range and have been embraced by critics and studio engineers alike.
Features of the Sennheiser HD 650 studio monitoring headphones
Being a premium studio monitoring headphone, the HD650 looks and feel luxurious. Both the ear pads and the headband have thick paddings with the entire unit has a quality titanium-silver finish. By taking one look at the HD650 there is no doubt that it’s a very special unit. Despite weighing 260 grams, these mixing headphones remain comfortable enough to wear. The size and weight of these headphone monitors are typical of others in the same class.
Like some other premium headphones, the drivers are hand-picked to make sure the left/right tolerances are precisely matched. They also feature a computer-optimized neodymium magnet system designed to minimize distortion. The voice coils are made of aluminium, which are claimed to provide accuracy and a fast transient response. They have an impedance of 300 ohms making them perfectly suited to recording studio use. Frequency response is respectable 12Hz to 41kHz.
The HD650 comes with a 9ft Y cable that is user-replaceable, which may be a good thing to many users since cables can eventually break after many years of consistent usage. The cable is terminated with a 1/4-inch plug. It also includes a high-quality mini-plug adapter.
The HD650 is comfortable enough though some users may complain that the headband can be a little tight. The open-air design combined with the well-padded ear-pads gives your ears a cool and comfortable feel. Noise isolation in unsurprisingly not very good considering the open-back design, however this will not present a problem for typical mixing and production usage.
The best word to describe the sound of these studio monitoring headphones is that the sound accuracy is excellent. The overall sound is very neutral as they reveal none of the coloration or even audible resonances that lesser headphones do. The low end is deep, clean and and well-articulated. The midrange is almost perfect, and the highs also sound great. Simply put, whatever was played and recorded is exactly what you’ll hear.
In general, the 650s are crisp, clear and can get loud. The mid-range is very well balanced. Extending to a very high 35 kHz, the highs are extremely good, without seeming bright or harsh. They let you to hear the source or recording for what it is… A. Colin Flood, Enjoy the Music
I found the HD650s strike an incredible balance of presence, reality, resolution, and detail, all while still managing to be just plain fun to listen to. I think that you’ll find the HD650s to be an excellent reference-grade tool for mixing, QC work and just good ol’ listening to music… Justin Peacock, Recording
Frequency Response: 12 –41,000Hz
Impedance: 300 Ohms
Cable length: 9.84”
The precision reproduction, great bass and neutral sound make the Sennheiser HD650s well suited to mix engineering and monitoring. Pitched near the top of Sennheiser’s open-back studio monitoring headphones range (you can find reviews of the HD600 and HD800 also on this site), the HD650s leave little room for improvement. If you are looking for a set of premium monitoring headphones, then the Sennheiser HD650s may just be perfect.
Do you already have the Sennheiser HD 650? Tell us what you think in the comments section!
Another premium headphone from Sennheiser that offers premium performance
- Great sounding