Old and New: HD555, HD558, HD598

After spending more time with the new HD558 and HD598 headphones, I begin to form a fairly solid opinion on the two of them. There are a lot of popular open headphones on the $100 range, such as the Alessandro MS1 (or the Grado SR80/SR125), the Audio Technica AD700, or the AKG K240. Although they all have their own strengths, I feel that they are not balanced enough for people looking for an all rounder $100 open headphone. The previous HD555 model had an overall good performance, but perhaps one of the main reason that makes it hard for people to enjoy is the lack of soundstage performance and open feel. For an open headphone, the HD555 doesn’t feel very open, especially when compared to the likes of the MS1 or the AD700. Hence, I’ve never been a big fan of the HD555, and I’ve preferred the AD700 or the MS1 over the Senn despite the latter two having a lack of proper bass body (even for non bassheads like me).

I don’t know if it’s just a coincidence, or if the engineers at Sennheiser have been doing some in-depth comparisons between the HD555 and the competitor models, because the HD558 mainly improves on the one factor that previously holds back the HD555 from being a crowd favorite: soundstage and a more open sound. Even if that may sound like a small improvement, the HD558 is far a more enjoyable headphone than the HD555 ever was to my ears. Also included with the upgrade is a more comfortable fit that results from a softer clamping force. The HD558 is much more enjoyable to listen to over longer periods of time, and yet it still sits fairly stable on the head. I’m guessing that the HD558 will retail on a similar pricepoint as the HD555, though being a new product, it probably will enter the market at a slightly higher price before finally settling to a lower street price.

On the first HD558 & HD598 article, I had posted a mod that was supposed to make the HD558 closer to the sound of the HD598. As with many modifications, however, when you gain some you also lose some. And the HD558 mod does sacrifice some amount of bass control, resulting in a slightly boomy bass area. Without going into too much detail on other changes with the mod, I felt that in the long run, the stock HD558 configuration is the better version, and I’ve reverted my HD558 back to the stock configuration. Ultimately, the HD598 is still the better version between the two (a point-by-point comparison between the HD558 and the HD598 can be found a few paragraphs down). The HD598, while sharing a similar construction and driver as the HD558, upscales very well as I find it to create very beautiful music with the Zana Deux. While not entirely up to the refinement of the HD650 or the HD800, the HD598 has a more lighter presentation that’s easier to enjoy with a lot of recordings.

It is interesting to note that Sennheiser created the HD555, the HD558, and the HD598 out of the same driver and the same frame design. The only thing that differentiates them, seemingly are the grill portion, and in the case of the HD555 to HD558, the construction around the driver. I think that speaks a lot of the level of expertise that the engineers at Sennheiser are capable of. Certainly, designing a grill portion that will tune the sound to a specific presentation is far more difficult than experimenting with different driver coil materials, pads, or damping methods. Imagining how Sennheiser is able to tune specifically the final sound of a headphone just by changing the holes on the grill is beyond me. The issue about the cracking headbands, however, is still a big question mark on the new headphones.

On the next page I will list a point-by-point comparison between the three headphones.


Old and New: HD555, HD558, HD598
3.33 (66.67%) 6 votes

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail

253 Comments

  • Reply September 18, 2010

    Professor00179

    Just because of personal interest – did you compare how well HD55 and HD598 do unamped? I know there are certain forums (e.g. head-fi) where majority of people says that an amplifier does not improve sound of HD5x5 and on the others I often read that you SHOULD have some amplifier to really hear how they sound. What would do better – medium source + AMP or just a good source?

    • Reply September 18, 2010

      Mike

      Hi Professor, thanks for asking. I never did test them amped to unamped (mostly I was listening to them out of the Grace m902). However, to answer your question, I did test the HD555, HD558, and the HD598 direct from an Ipod Classic, then with a Ibasso PB1 amp, then to the Grace m902 DAC/Amp (with the Onkyo dock), and finally to the Zana Deux. With every step, the changes are real, and having an amp noticeably improves the following:
      – Soundstage performance and ambiance.
      – PRaT factor.
      – Bass dynamics.

  • […] would be considering them for gaming, there's an article by Headfonia that has a few comparisons: http://www.headfonia.com/old-and-new-hd555-hd558-hd598/ __________________ LIVE from omicron persei […]

  • Reply September 18, 2010

    Professor00179

    Ye that is what I expected to happen.:D To be honest I think people from head-fi forums slightly underrate the importance of good AMP with these headphones and this is whyHD595 have an opinions of very slow and bass-light sound. I have tried it only with AMPed source (well I did also test Marantz 6003 AMP but it was crap and not burned-in) and I could not believe how people can say this headphone is bass-light or lifeless. I guess comparing to SR325 they would sound lifeless but at least your ears would not bleed…:D

    Thanks for checking.

    • Reply September 18, 2010

      Mike

      No problem. It's interesting that you mentioned about the SR325 Grado. The local headphone community here seems to have lost interest in Grados, as the more sensitive your ears become (what happens if you've been into headphones for years), the Grado treble is far too piercing for the majority of mainstream recordings.

      The Audio Technicas took over as the crowd favorite in recent years, but I think the new Sennheisers should be a very strong contender for being the next crowd favorite.

  • Reply September 19, 2010

    Professor00179

    @Jose – I think you should skip HD598. While it is an improvement over old version I would not consider HD5x8 as a proper upgrade since they are still not the same league as HD600. I would say that you should spend a bit more and go for something of HD600 class – this would be real upgrade whereas HD5x8 is too close in performance. However, moving from HD555 to better headphones you should also buy an AMP. If I were you would buy good AMP/DAC combo instead of new headphones.

    As for the Grados – I currently own SR80i with flats/comfies and would definitely not like sound brighter than that and it does get more bright moving up in the Grado line… Just cant understand people listening to SR325 though I did not hear it (yet?). More brighter than SR80? Brighter than 125 and 225? Just cant (and do not want to:P) imagine that sound.

  • Reply September 19, 2010

    Professor00179

    Yeah, Audio-technicas became very popular in the entry-level market. As for the SR325 – there is a theory that John Grado was designing his headphones listening to Analogs and that is why all Grados are so bright. I guess with smooth and darkish analog sound they would do exceptionally well when compared to dark Sennheisers like HD650.

    • Reply September 19, 2010

      Mike

      That's an interesting theory and yet totally makes sense. He makes turntable cartdriges as well, so probably that's what he used for tuning the headphones.
      The Grados seem to be optimally tuned for Blues, Jazz, Country and perhaps some Classic Rock. While the work fairly well for some other genres, yet they don't seem to be tuned optimally for the other genres.

      Anyway, I think the Grados should go back to the old HP1000/HP2 signature. In a way the HF2 Grado was highly successful due to its smoother presentation.

  • Reply September 19, 2010

    Jose

    Hello I am new into the decent headphone quality headphones. I found your site looking for information about the new HD558/598

    It will be interesting a comparative of the 558/598 with different amp settings.

    You have to keep in mind that this an entry product into the serious audio world. The main reason because I want this headphone is because open the gates of the decent quality audio world without even needing a dedicated amp or dac.

    I bought my HD555 just two weeks ago. I connected it to the laptop and when I started listening I was blown away listening so much detail.

    I updated my spotify account to premium (which let you listen in ogg 320kpbs quality). I re-ripped my favourite music to FLAC.etc.

    Now I want the new HD598 🙁

    It will be interesting to see which amp is the perfect match for these new headphones. And I have a feeling the zana deux is a bit too expensive for me. I am going to check if I can sell my liver on ebay anyway.

    • Reply September 20, 2010

      Mike

      @Jose: Yea, I know the Zana is probably too much for these. 😉
      The HD558/598 is fairly easy to drive though, I think it'll be easy to find a good amp to drive it. Even with the Ibasso PB1, which is a portable, I found the combination to be quite pleasing.
      As for amp choices, the variable is huge and I can't really say what amp would be perfect for these. Some people would probably want a mellow tube amp to go with these, and some other would probably want solid state precision for these. It depends a lot on your personal taste and music.
      Lately the two amps that I think has very good sound for a fairly low price are the Matrix M-Stage (solid state) and the Hifiman EF-5 (tube hybrid). You can check the reviews at these links: http://www.headfonia.com/matrix-m-stage/ http://www.headfonia.com/hifiman-ef5-review/

      I know I posted earlier that these headphones improve when driven from an amplifier, but I actually think that one of the reason that the HD558/598 is more attractive than the HD600/650 series is that they are very light on the amp requirements. So if you get the HD598, you'd probably be fine without an amplifier, or just getting a DAC that has a built in amp like the Audinst HUD-MX1 or the Dr. DAC series, whereas the HD600/650 would need a separate desktop amp, at the minimum the M-Stage and the EF5 I mentioned earlier.
      http://www.headfonia.com/dr-dac2-dx/ http://www.headfonia.com/matrix-mini-i-balanced-dhttp://www.headfonia.com/esi-dr-dac-nano-entry-lehttp://www.headfonia.com/audinst-hud-mx1-dac/ http://www.headfonia.com/esi-audiotrak-dr-dac-pri

      I agree with what Professor said as well. Just keep in mind that if you get the HD600/650, you gonna need to get a separate desktop amp for driving the headphones.

  • Reply September 19, 2010

    purrin

    LOL, on Grados… The only ones I can stand are the HF-2 and PS-1000 (which I actually own). I find all other Grados having a bit too much high-mid / trble. So I guess I'm really that much of a Grado fan. I been considering for the longest time on grabbing a lower end phone such as a SR-125 for my kids, but now I'm probably going to get an HD598.

    • Reply September 20, 2010

      Mike

      Nice collection! I thought the PS1000 was a little hot as well when I heard it. I'd probably take the HP1000 over the PS1000. 🙂

  • Reply September 20, 2010

    odvan

    I repeat it there:

    Mike, another question cause I really want to buy one of this.

    How they play w/o amp? Does amp change sound huge? Or it’s ok for the first time use it w/o amp? Cause I don’t have one (planning to buy matrix m-stage after NY, curious about synergy:)).

    Btw price for 558 is around 160 euro, 598 – 190 euro (also chap from Romania said both much cheaper there).

    Also how do you think would HD598 be an upgrade from AD700 or just a step in another direction?

    Thanks for attention!

  • Reply September 22, 2010

    Jose

    Thanks for all the information Mike. It has helped me a lot. Well not only me but I guess many other people that just arrived to the hifier world.

    For once I feel I know what I am going to pay for. 😛

    Anyway the price, even in amazon, for the HD598 is £200. I think I am going to leave the price to settle down a bit.

    • Reply September 22, 2010

      Mike

      Hi Jose, I thought you already have a Hifiman HE5 and are going to get the HD800?

  • Reply October 5, 2010

    Kelvin

    Cool stuff, Mike! I've just done the same comparison a few days ago and it looks like I'm not too far off from your mark!

    My vote will probably go to the 598 although something tells me that the 558 might be worth looking into (esp with mods).

  • Reply October 5, 2010

    Mike

    I think the two can be improved considerably in the hands of a damping expert. 😀

  • Reply October 5, 2010

    Lefty

    Thanks for this comparison, I have an HD555 and i love them, really great headphones but now I'm thinking about to replace them with a 598 😀

  • Reply October 5, 2010

    Mike

    I think the 598 will be a nice upgrade! It's not up to the resolution and the refinement of the HD600, but I also find it to be better than the HD600 in many other ways. I'll find some time to carefully compare the two.

  • Reply October 10, 2010

    Kelvin

    Quick update after 558 and 598 have slightly burnt in.

    558’s are definitely out of the running (if you’re coming from 555). Too wonky sounding to even place my finger on the faults.

    598’s can sound better with a decent amp/DAC pairing and it’s definitely more usable for pop/soft rock/jrock/jpop/acoustics (you can see where I’m coming from already :P).

    They could still use a bit more speed, though.

    But, all in, it is really not a massive step up from the HD555 (really subtle changes only – at least where my old 555’s are concerned). It is almost certainly more refined than a 558 and has more “air” than a 555 (whilst giving the impression of being well-planted).

    • Reply October 11, 2010

      Mike

      Nice impressions, Kelvin.

  • Reply October 16, 2010

    donunus

    For those into Metal Music or Hard Rock where we have a bunch of thin sounding recordings, is it possible that the 558 will be a more suitable headphone than the hd598?

    I am a fan of the 555/595 (Ive had both) sound except for that annoying glaryness in the upper mids that masks everything IMO. In fact when the music hits those annoying spots of the 555/595 the bass and treble become drowned out and sound lacking in definition then the lower mids seem to become thin making the sound nasal. When the music playing is not too active in the specific problem spots, the bass and lower mids of those cans are actually decent and full.

    Now if the 558 fixes this annoying glaryness of the 555s and adds bass heft then it surely sounds like it could be a great headphone for me especially when it was mentioned that they had a better soundstage and were more airy. The 598s really seem tempting too because of the better refinement mentioned but I cant sacrifice bass heft for that with the specific music that I listen to 80% of the time. I am not a basshead but since Ive had the 555/595(the hd580 and 600 too BTW), I am talking about needing more bass than the former two for my tastes. The hd600 bass is just about right in quantity IMO but the overall sound needs a little more energy and slightly less of that upper mids glare that the hd650 fixes(while messing up other things LOL).

    Hope you don't mind the garble there. I just wanted to post some thoughts hoping someone could comment on.

    • Reply October 16, 2010

      Mike

      To be honest, I really can’t imagine the upper mid glare problem that you find. I’m not saying it doesn’t exist, but rather I’m too unfamiliar with Metal and Hard Rock. I know that a lot of the local guys who listens to hard rock and metal prefer vintage orthos for their music. I think the signature of the Fostex headphones matches their music very well, so you may want to look into them.

      Here is an article to get you started: http://www.headfonia.com/vintage-orthodynamics/

  • Reply October 16, 2010

    donunus

    The upper mid glare is just the forwardness that you talk about I think. You were saying in your comparison that the 558 gets rid of that extra forwardness that the 555s have.

    Grados for example are guilty of this harshness in the upper mids that my ears don't like for example, especially with the 325i. The HF2 for example is a step in the right direction for Grado in getting rid of that upper midrange harshness.

    I'll look into the orthos but I highly doubt i'll be getting old used cans. Hope I can find some NOS ones.

    • Reply October 16, 2010

      Mike

      Ah, I see.. Yes, it may be better than the HD555, but I can't say for sure as I don't know the recordings precisely.

  • Reply October 19, 2010

    Diabolo

    Hi Mike,

    my current headphone is Sennheiser eh150 and i want to upgrade to the hd558 or hd598.

    i have a few questions for you:

    1) i am listen to hip hop music so which headphones will be better for me the hd558 or hd598? if the answer is 598 is it worth the 50$+-?

    2) is there big different between listen to motherboard output to amplifier with this headphones?

    3)do you think that if i will buy new sound card the sound will be better?

    4) can i use my TX-SR608 (Home Theater receiver) as a Amplifier?

    sorry about my English

    Thanks

    Diabolo

    i must of the time listen to Hip Hop & pop so

    • Reply October 19, 2010

      Mike

      Diabolo, the HD558 is more bassy and you'll probably like it better than the HD598 which has less bass. But for hip-hop, I would recommend you to check out the closed headphones like AKG K181DJ, Sennheiser HD25-1, or ATH M-50 which has a more fitting presentation.
      http://www.headfonia.com/closed-cans-shootout-m-5

      • Reply October 20, 2010

        Diabolo

        tnx

  • Reply October 20, 2010

    Kelvin

    Mike,

    Sorry to bother you again but, if you can, do publish the 598 vs 600 shootout! I'm sooo looking forward to reading it!

  • Reply November 13, 2010

    silver1984

    Good day,

    Please help me to find what are differences between Sennheiser HD598 and Sennheiser HD595 in sound quality?

    I've tried to found these by muself.

    But only founded that these two models has the same sound quality.

    Which one of HD595 and HD598 has the best sound quality and why?

    Thanks!

    • Reply November 15, 2010

      Mike

      Silver1984, I haven't done a direct 595 to 598 comparison. Interpolating from the 555 to 558, I can guess that the 598 will have a better soundstage than the 595.

  • Reply January 8, 2011

    Robert

    Mike, how about this range: pop, pop-folk, light jazz and classical music (mostly piano, but also violin)? Which of the three would sound best? Thanks.

    • Reply January 8, 2011

      Mike

      I'd probably take the 598 for all the genres you mentioned, except for Pop, which I think would be better on the 558. The 598 is one of my favorites for Piano.

  • Reply January 10, 2011

    Robert

    Thank you!

  • Reply January 16, 2011

    Luis Cardoso

    I wonder if the tests of the HD555 were conducted with the headphone stock, or with the foam mod. When stock, these cans have a piece of foam glued to the grill that closes the headphone quite a bit, narrowing the soundstage. If the HD555 was stock, that might be the reason why they felt a bit like closed headphones.
    The HD595 didn't have them when stock, so I (and many many 555 owners) removed the foam and experienced a sound that's more open and airy, with better soundstage.

    Just my 0.02$

  • Reply January 20, 2011

    Tom

    Hey there Mike!

    I'm currently on the market for new headphones. At the moment, I have Sennheiser Hd212pro, which are the most expensive headphone I ever had. (says a lot about my experience, doesn't it. :D).

    558's and 598's are the headphones i'm looking forward to. I'm just wondering, are the 598's noticeably better than 558's, and what do you mean by "boomy bass"? Is it a big problem, or is it something a person with my experiance coming from low-end cheap headphones wouldnt notice?

    I'm mostly listening to rock, acoustic and vocal, sometimes trance when I'm in the mood.

    So basically, the question is. Are 598's a big improvement over the modded 558's?
    If you would have to give them an overall score (considering the price), what would it be? (1-100 score)

    Thanks 😛

    • Reply January 20, 2011

      Tom

      Also, just to add one more thing… i'm only using the headphones from my PC. And currently I dont have any extra soundcard. I have an onboard realtek alc899, which is decent, atleast i think so.
      I'm plugging my headphones into logitech z2300 2.1 speaker system, which have a small headphone amp inside. I dont know about the quality of that amp, but it runs my 212's up to its maximum loudness at about 60% of volume.

      So, if you had 150 dollars to spend. What would you get? A headphone amp? A new soundcard? A DAC? Or a combination of those things? Note again that i have absolutely no experience with anything above low-fi equippement.

      • Reply January 20, 2011

        Mike

        Hi Tom,I'm trying to get a feel of what it would be like for someone in your position, thinking about a headphone upgrade. Guess what, since I am quite unfamiliar with your preferences, I think that the HD558 would be a better choice. In a way it's a better all rounder than the HD598, and of course the cost is far more friendlier. The HD598 can be said to be better due to its sweeter midrange and less dark tuning (if these terms don't make sense, don't worry about them too much). However it has less bass quantity than the HD558, and I think that may be an issue for you. You should also look at the HD25-1. I think it's a better Rock and Techno headphone than both the HD558/598.

        • Reply February 9, 2011

          Arenaz

          HI Mike. I was about to buy this headphone 598HD. And I mostly listen to rap music. And a bit Jazz. The thing is that you just said, that the sound is much more rounder in 558 than 598. the bass a bit lesser. I am willing to give 250, but iam not sure, if that would be a “why the f, would you give 250, dollars for this”

          sry for using harsh letters

          iam afraid that i would get that feeling. Would 595 be a better choice for me? i heard people say, there is no bass, but for a headphone like these 598 595, getting these beautiful reviews, while some of us consumers, say there is no bass. it gets me concerned.

          • Reply February 9, 2011

            Anonymous

            The HD558 has more bass than the HD598, that’s right. If you’re looking for bass then you’ll be disappointed. You have to understand that the HD598is probably voiced more toward jazz, vocal and acoustics. For Rap you’ll be better off with a closed headphone like the HD25-1.

            Cheers.

            • Reply February 9, 2011

              Arenaz

              thanks for the answer. Would it make any difference if you put an amp? Or a software that auto. produces bass? srs audio?

              i dont know if that we get the deal done with the 598HD

              • Reply February 9, 2011

                Anonymous

                An amp will help, depending on the amplifier’s character. Software will
                also help. But why not get a headphone that has a punchy bass in the
                first place? That unless you’re already hooked to the HD598.

                • Reply February 9, 2011

                  Arenaz

                  haha yeah, its just that they looks so dandy.

                • Reply February 9, 2011

                  Arenaz

                  i have read your review on the e7. and i think iam going to buy these with my sennheisser 598HD… I think it would be a killa combination. Once again thanks. I have made my mind up. 😀 598HD and e7 AMP

                  • Reply February 9, 2011

                    Anonymous

                    Awesome. Enjoy!

          • Reply February 9, 2011

            Anonymous

            Arenaz, here is an article that compares many popular closed headphones. You’ll be better off with these headphones.

            http://www.headfonia.com/closed-cans-shootout-m-50-esw-9-t50p-hd25-1-beats-studio-srh-840-srh-750dj-k181dj-and-dj1pro/

  • Reply January 21, 2011

    Tom

    Thanks for the reply Mike. 558's it is then. I'll still try out both 558's and 598's in the store before buying them, but I like to go into the story knowing what I'm gonna be in advance. 😛

    One more thing, I know its probably a bit off-topic here, but, since I dont have a extra sound-card or amplifier (apart from the one in my 2.1 logitech z2300), what would be the best solution for me, up to about 200 dollars. An internal PC soundcard + amp, external DAC + amp or some device that acts as both DAC and headphone amp. I've been told that the iBasso D2 or D4 would do the job, as well as D10, which is a bit over my budget. Also, NuForce uDac2 is cheap in my country, but apparently its not powerful enough to run fullsize headphones at high volumes?

    • Reply January 21, 2011

      Mike

      You can check out the Audinst HUD-MX1, which has been a very popular entry level DAC/Amp set up. I did a comparison to the Ibasso D10 and D4 and the original uDAC, and I found the Audinst to be superior. The uDAC2 has a better DAC than the original, but lower power on the amplifier, so you may run into problems with the HD558 if the recording level is low. And yet, I would still rank the Audinst DAC to be better than the uDAC2.

      You can read the review here: http://www.headfonia.com/audinst-hud-mx1-dac/

  • Reply February 11, 2011

    Donunus

    I got the hd558s and let me say that they were horrible out of the box just like my old 555s. they were painfully bright and aggressive but after around 120 hours burn in and around 20 hours of listening time above the 120 hours… They are now smooth and musical. These are nice cans. I’m enjoying listening to my music library with these quite a bit.

    • Reply February 11, 2011

      Anonymous

      Nice. Havent seen you around for a while.

      I just bought a HD202 and I modded it to single entry style. Been enjoying the sound out of it for a few days now.

  • Reply February 13, 2011

    Esref

    what is the 598 HD good for ? if it can’t play pop, downtempo, trip hop, hip hop? this headphone sucks then. for real. what you say? classical music?`jazz ? you got to be kiddin me.
    Is this headphone only good at playing classical?

    • Reply February 14, 2011

      Anonymous

      Lol. Headphones are like that. Some are voiced more for certain types of music, and some for others. Of course it’ll still work if you put any recordings through it, but if you want a specific recommendation, then you’ll have to consider a lot of things and match them to the type of music.

  • Reply February 13, 2011

    ArenaZ

    Hi, again. I think I made a little mistake. I should have listened to you. Why didn’t I! damn! stupid. aarrg. I have recieved the package, 598HD. And i listend to it, it blew my mind. I listend to latin jazz. Like I said earlier, i like hip hop and downtempo, yess there is bass in those headphone, but not punchy. I listened to some hip hop music, and downtempo.. i was like: hmm.. this is really good.

    so my question to you ; should i return the package and buy the HD558? the sound is okay on downtempo, and hiphop. But in latin lounge jazz, i got an eargasm. literally..
    So if i buy the 558HD and return my beautiful, 598HD, would it make any difference in the choice of music in downtempo, (iam not a hip hop enthusiastic, but i enjoy it from time to time)

    • Reply February 14, 2011

      Anonymous

      I think what you really need is the HD25-1. One of the punchiest bass you can get for $200.

      • Reply February 14, 2011

        ArenaZ

        I think i dont have other choices 😀

        • Reply February 14, 2011

          Anonymous

          Trust me on this one. 😀 I don’t think I’ve ever met ONE person who
          complaints about the HD25-1’s bass, and I’ve been making that
          recommendation for as long as I can remember.

  • Reply February 16, 2011

    ArenaZ

    Headphonia, i just want to say, that u are the BEST, these headphone you recommended me, hmm, at least TEN TIMES, is the best headphone ever. I don’t even think of returning it, like i did with the HD 598.
    The bass is so awesome. and best of all, it covers all the music genre I personally like.

    Just to clarify. If you guys are not sure, that the Hd598 would play music genre like hip hop, downtempo, music with a lots of bass etc. then you should get the sennheiser hd25-ii. it is the bomb, man. the only negative is, that its a bit tight.

    • Reply February 16, 2011

      Anonymous

      Hey, so you have gotten the HD25-1?

    • Reply February 16, 2011

      Anonymous

      Just to add, the HD25-1’s bass is very punchy and absolutely tight. No boomy bass whatsoever. It really is one of the best portable for bass.

      If you’re feeling the grip to be too tight, you can spread out the headband and put books in between to loosen it a little.

      • Reply February 17, 2011

        Arenas

        is it just me? I feel like the sound has got alot better. The bass is more soft. its incredible.. :,( just listened to the cinematic orchestra.. familiar ground. its awesome. i can send it to your mail, if you want to listen to it?

        • Reply February 17, 2011

          Anonymous

          Thanks for the offer man! But I’ve had 4 HD25-1s to this day. I’m glad you’re enjoying it.

          If u want a better headphone for orchestra, get the Sony Z1000. You can find the review on the front page. But the bass is not as punchy as the HD25-1.

          Glad you’re enjoying it.

  • Reply February 19, 2011

    MyNameIS

    Hey headphonia, i have recently bought the 558. When I listen to loud music, the headphone is very unprice with the bass, it vibrates with noise that shoudn’t be in the music. What can i say, its not very clean. Iam saying this because it is really bad.
    Is it supposed to be that way, or should i give more days to “warm it up” got these response on other blogs, i hope you come with a response that is much more useful, or is it just me.

    • Reply February 19, 2011

      MyNameIS

      i meant imprecise* it lacks detail. I thought with those nedium magnets, this bitch could do anything..

    • Reply February 21, 2011

      Anonymous

      Hi,
      I am not so sure on what you mean by “unprice” and “vibrates”. If the
      drivers have fundamental bass issues, then burning-in probably would
      change only very little. My experience with the HD558 is pretty good. I
      didn’t notice any major issues with the bass (such as vibrating?),
      though it may not be the most precise bass.

      • Reply February 21, 2011

        MyNameIS

        this headphone are not good with fast music. when listening it loudly, highs of the music, is really bad. its almost like your ears are bleeding

        • Reply February 22, 2011

          Anonymous

          Yeah, too bad it doesn’t work out for you.

    • Reply February 21, 2011

      Donunus

      My 558s seemed to distort less and at louder volumes after longer burn in. When i first received them, they didn’t even have any bass and would distort at pretty low listening levels. give them time

      • Reply February 21, 2011

        Anonymous

        You’ve got to be kidding me! That is awful! I don’t think my 558s
        behaved that bad when I just got them.

        Anyway the 598s got fried, somehow. I think it was plugged in to an amp
        that has a dying battery and I wasn’t aware of it so it was probably
        being fed with some nasty DC-offset which now busted the driver. So I
        took the 558s driver and soldered the drivers into the 598 frame. 598 is
        good as new, but I got no 558s now.

        • Reply February 25, 2011

          MyNameIS

          My refund had expired. I had to give it a chance.. There is to much treble .. what can i do? piercing sound.. i want it soft. the sound is really “shaky” and unclear at high volumes..

          • Reply February 25, 2011

            Anonymous

            About the treble, the HD558 is not my typical description of a bright headphone, but with the *wrong* recording, it can sound bright yes. What recordings are you listening to?

        • Reply February 25, 2011

          MyNameIS

          does it play good fast music? i mean your “558” 🙂 almost 598hd- all i can say the bass is good in these cans i have. but with fast music, it’s like i said, very imprecise.. hope you can help me, because if it is just me, or that is the way the 558hd plays, i need to know, so what i can do next..

          • Reply February 25, 2011

            Donunus

            burn in fixed that problem for me. Connect it to your amp, play loud music with some punch but don’t turn it up where it is distorting. Put it on track repeat mode to eliminate the chance of distorting with another song thats louder. Leave it on for a week… After you put the headphones back on after the week is done, you might be surprised with the changes you hear. If you are using these with the pc, you might also want to try a different media player to get better synergy. On my laptop for example, mediamonkey gives me more bass and a slightly more laid back sound vs foobar2000 for example. If you don’t believe me you can try these tips out for free anyways. You’ve got nothing to lose 🙂

          • Reply February 25, 2011

            Anonymous

            Sorry it doesn’t work out for you.

            Did you actually read the review? I mentioned it several times, especially when comparing to the HD555, that the 558 has a less precise, looser bass. I don’t think there is little you can do short of an extreme damping mod, which I haven’t quite tried with the HD558. But I think the bottom line with Senns is that in general, the HD5XX line, and the HD650 is not recommended for fast music.

            Fast music, gotta go with the HD25-1. You’ll get the precise bass with that headphone.

            • Reply February 25, 2011

              Donunus

              yah it will never become an hd25 if thats the kind of bass you want

              • Reply February 25, 2011

                MyNameIS

                should have read this review before i bought this crappy headphone.. 🙁

                i will take your advice Donunus.. if it doesn’t work out, i would sell this headphone for halfprice.. i just want it sold.. then i will go for hd25- and this time i will try it before i buy it. Thanks guys.

                • Reply February 25, 2011

                  Anonymous

                  Okay, good luck man.

                • Reply February 25, 2011

                  Donunus

                  If you end up selling them for half price, please let me know since a friend of mine is also interested in getting a pair. He did actually order one already then heard mine when it was new. he got dissapointed with mine and got rid of his before even listening. After some burn in, he listened to my 558s again and now he wants one again LOL Sorry for the peter piper picked a pickled pepper kind of post hehehe

                  • Reply February 25, 2011

                    MyNameIS

                    haha, dude, he is just like me! 😛 iam for fast bass, less treble, little darker kind of cans. i will give it a 2-3 weeks. if it does not live up to my needs i will sell it for 60. but iam not sure.. cuz i live in denmark. where do you live?

  • Reply February 23, 2011

    Frankstijnman

    I really want to buy the HD598 headphones from Sennheiser but reports about cracking headphones make me wonder whether I do good buying these… I would expect them to last for at least 5 years without issues.

    Perhaps could anybody give me some recommendation for a similar type of headphone not having this issue?

    • Reply February 24, 2011

      Donunus

      Ive had my 555s and 595s for a while and sold them to people that abuse them a bit and they havent cracked until now. I just checked out their cans recently and didn’t notice any cracks. Those are 4 and 6 year old cans. As far as the new ones (558 and 598) It seems to be the same construction as the old versions except my 558 for example could be less brittle with the plastic feeling slightly less hollow. It could just be the difference in the paint, I’m not 100% sure 🙂

      • Reply February 24, 2011

        Frankstijnman

        Thanks for your comment, I guess a small percentage appears to have some problem with the plastic composition of their headband according to some people at Head-Fi: http://www.head-fi.org/forum/thread/534963/sennheiser-hd-598-starting-to-crack

        Though since there hasn’t been any major forum thread around I guess it should be safe to buy a pair of HD598 headphones.

        • Reply February 25, 2011

          Donunus

          It looks like a random thing… hmm i guess you’ll have to take the risk if you are really aiming for those 🙂 I’ve owned all the 5xx cans except for the 598 so I can’t comment from firsthand experience on that exact model.

        • Reply February 26, 2011

          Anonymous

          I am not quite experienced with how these headphones age (I’ve only had
          them quite recently), so I think I’ll listen to what Donunus said.

    • Reply February 25, 2011

      Anonymous

      Hi Frank,
      I really don’t have any long-term (ie more than a year) experience with these headphones, so I can’t tell you. Yes there has been cracking problems with the previous HD555/595 lines, but the HD558/598 are newer and I don’t think we can verify that yet.

  • Reply February 25, 2011

    newbie

    wow! I was actually planning on buying the hd555 this weekend but your article does a great job convincing me that the hd558 is significantly superior but I’m still not entirely sure which to get now since currently the hd555 cost $84.99 on amazon while the hd558 cost $119.88 so I was wondering is the improvement from the hd555 to hd558 that great as to account for the additional cost?

    p.s. I’m pretty low on budget so yes this price difference does significantly impact my decision

    • Reply February 25, 2011

      Anonymous

      That is quite a price difference. What kind of songs do you listen to?

      • Reply February 25, 2011

        newbie

        thanks for responding and I personally listen to a fairly large range of music but it consists mostly of the Beatles, Pink Floyd, Dire Straits, CCR, Genesis, and generally classic rock and pop

        • Reply February 25, 2011

          Anonymous

          I think the HD558 would be quite a better pairing for classic rock and pop. I personally listen to the remastered stereo Beatles, and I’d get the HD558 for them.

          • Reply February 25, 2011

            newbie

            alright thank you again and just to be clear you are saying that I should purchase the more expensive HD558 correct?

            • Reply February 25, 2011

              newbie

              actually never mind the listing for $119.88 was for used headphones while the cheapest new set is $179.95 so would you still say the HD558 is worth the huge price gap?

            • Reply February 25, 2011

              Anonymous

              Yes. And not because it’s more expensive. 🙂

            • Reply February 25, 2011

              Anonymous

              Ouch, at double the price? I don’t know, I probably would hesitate to get the 558 at double the price of a 555.

              • Reply February 25, 2011

                Donunus

                Got mine for $139 by the way from J&R through ebay. Its still great at that price IMO. They were total garbage out of the box and suddenly after leaving them on for a while they just started gaining more attributes as they loosened up.

                By the way Mike, Is putting website links for places to buy stuff okay on this site?

                • Reply February 25, 2011

                  Anonymous

                  Not a problem. Go ahead and post links.

    • Reply February 26, 2011

      Anonymous

      Hmmm… what music are you listening to?

  • Reply March 7, 2011

    Igge

    “We can probably go ahead with a HD558, MS1, and AD700 comparison,
    but at the same time, I’m asking Sennheiser to create an update of the HD650 headphone.”
    Is this going to happen soon? 🙂
    I have a opportunity to get the 598 for $170 and the MS-1 for around $130 after duty and I dont really know which to choose.

    • Reply March 7, 2011

      Igge

      I should add that I mostly listen to extreme metal with a bit of electronic music and game/movie soundtracks (kind of bombastic orchestral)

      • Reply March 8, 2011

        Anonymous

        Mmmm… I don’t think both the HD598 and the MS-1 will be good for your
        music.

        Metal and electronic music, go with HD25-1.
        Game and Movie soundtracks, go with the HD558 (not 598), or the ATH M-50.

    • Reply March 8, 2011

      Anonymous

      Sadly, Sennheiser won’t say anything about a HD650 replacement. Don’t
      know if it’s going to happen soon or not.

      I’ve also failed to deliver that HD558, MS1 and AD700 comparison, have I?

      Between the 598 and MS-1, I think both are good headphones. Depends on
      your taste, I guess. What cans have you been listening to? Ever listen
      to a Grado?

  • Reply March 16, 2011

    龙少

    hmmm… I use music for relief my stress because of (STUDY) !!! Not a Pro listener like you all XD
    I tested HD555 today , It’s feel very, Enjoyable and all the sound are quite good , i’ll give 90% .. so i checked the internet , i found sennheiser had a newer numerical of 555 , that is 558 and 598 …
    So, which one should i buy ?
    From ebay or amazon ?
    Sorry if i got Grammar errors T.T
    thanks

    • Reply March 17, 2011

      Anonymous

      All these gears are only there for the music, and don’t feel discouraged by all these “pro” listeners.

      The 555 is good, and the 558 should be a good upgrade to that. The 598 is more of a specialty for vocal, and the bass is thinner than on the 558/598 models.

  • Reply April 2, 2011

    SJC

    Do you know if the headband cracking problems have been fixed with these new headphones? The HD555 would crack right below where it says “HD 555”, right on the word SENNHEISER

    • Reply April 2, 2011

      Anonymous

      No one has been quite able to confirm it yet. But I haven’t heard any
      news of the HD558 headband cracking.

      • Reply April 3, 2011

        mathu

        Unfortunately, I can confirm that this problem still exists 🙁

        My 598 started to crack in the usual places after just two months of usage. I’ve had returned it to the seller and replaced them with HD650. Better stay away from the 5×8 and 5×5 series because Sennheiser is shamelessly ignoring the problem that persists for almost 10 years! They’re fully aware of it and still not willing to fix the faulty design.

        • Reply April 4, 2011

          Anonymous

          Thanks for the input, mathu. That’s too bad, Sennheiser could’ve changed
          the composition in the plastic just a little bit to make it better.

          My HD558 and HD598 are still fine, though I got them right before the
          product launch. But I also don’t use them everyday.

  • Reply April 24, 2011

    Evin Discreet

    Mike. Is the clamp on the 558 the same as the force on the 598? Would you say one is more comfortable than the other. the 555s is hurting me

    • Reply April 25, 2011

      Anonymous

      Strangely,
      I think the 558 and the 598 are more comfrotable and less grippy than the 555.

      • Reply April 25, 2011

        Evin Discreet

        Ok. Thanks for the reply… Good to know. However, are the two 598, 558 the same in terms of comfort? I read somewhere that the 598 can be stretched a bit whereas the 558s cannot.

        Also, are the 558s brighter when you take out the foam? I am really put off by the fact that you said the 598s are funner to listen to. Why are there so many inconsistencies with people’s review?

        Most importantly, you did not really do a comparison of a MODDED hd558 to a stock 598.
        Does the modded 558 sound veiled, laid back or is it as bright as the 598 with more forward mids like the 598 stock?
        I already know that the bass will be looser with/w/o the mod on the 558…Thanks in advance

        • Reply April 26, 2011

          Anonymous

          I have both the HD558 and 598 in front of me, and the housing can be stretched just as equally to fit even really big heads. The clamping force and flexibility factor is identical.

          The 558 doesnt get brighter without the foam, only some addition to the lower mids. Hence the 558 remains to sound different than the 598 even after the removal of the foam.

          Modded or not, the 558 remains darker, more laid back, and bassier than the 598. The 598 is brighter, more forward and engaging, less bassy, overall lighter tone (think of the direction of a Grado without the sharp treble). The 558 mod only adds some lower mids body, nothing else.

          • Reply April 26, 2011

            Evin Discreet

            Again, thanks Mike. I got my 558 shipment. I now ave the 555 (modded) and the 558 (not modded) in front of me. I guess I will go for the mod.
            I def see what you mean by airier and more open on the 558s- i.e. more 3D sounding.

            I will say one more thing though. I know you are an audiophile and even you initially though there is extremely little difference bw the 558 and the 598 when the mod was performed, albeit you subsequently elaborated, and even retracted in a sense. In essence, do you think me, a non AP, listening to my 558s HPs from a FLAC source from my Dell laptop would have noticed the difference w/ a 598 from the outset? I know it’s a bit hard to answer questions like this but to give you an idea of my listening sensitivities, I do NOT see how the bass is tighter on the 555 (modded) vs. the 558 (stock).

            By all means, you may lie to me a bit to make me feel better (so I feel as though I’m not missing out) :).

            • Reply April 26, 2011

              Anonymous

              Hi Evin,
              I think I was being a little over enthusiastic when I first wrote about
              the HD558 mod. You are right that at the end I end up liking the stock
              version better. The HD558 and the HD598 basically have a slightly
              different voicing, which I would guess is from the honeycomb structure
              of the grille. Technicalities wise, they are actually quite similar,
              since both are based on the same driver. So, will you notice the
              difference from your DELL laptop? I bet you would, since the sound is
              actually different. It’s like listening to two different headphones
              (indeed they are two different headphones).

              If in doubt, I would leave the HD558 stock, as the professional sound
              engineers who tuned these headphones probably know acoustics better than
              we do. But there is no right or wrong here, and so if you’re curious, go
              ahead and do the mod and see if your music sounds better. If it sounds
              better, than leave it at that.

              • Reply April 26, 2011

                Evin Discreet

                I just want to say that I am liking the 558s a lot. Thanks for all your input. I can still return my hd555 for 60 dollars credit and purchase the 598s for 165. In your opinion, is it worth the 100 bux extra?

                • Reply April 26, 2011

                  Anonymous

                  Can’t say as it’s your money, but the HD598 is better for vocals
                  primarily. With hip hop and pop stuff, it’s not that much better.

                  If you can take that $60 credit and use it for a HD25-1 purchase, that
                  would be a better idea. Then you have two different headphones to cover
                  more genres.

                  • Reply April 26, 2011

                    Evin Discreet

                    Thanks. I’ve heard a bunch of good things about it. My only worry is the comfort. Several ppl have brought up that issue. I wear glasses and even the hd555 were uncomfortable for me. Geez, I dunno

                    • April 27, 2011

                      Anonymous

                      I am trying the HD25-1 with a pair of sunglasses now, and while it is not as comfortable as without the glasses, I dont think it’s a big problem for me though I dont wear glasses on a daily basis.

                    • April 28, 2011

                      Evin Discreet

                      Bro, I got to stay away from you and this website. I returned my hd555 that I got for 60 bux. I went and bought the 598 AND the addidas hd25 Originals. My wallet says… 😉

                      No but honestly, thanks for all your input, I’m sure it will be worth it. I would have had the upgrade itch down the line anyway….

                    • April 28, 2011

                      Anonymous

                      Oh man, you are so screwed. 🙂

                      Well, good tthing you bought the Adidas originals model though. With all the HD25 recommendations I am making, I think they will soon be everywhere.

                    • April 28, 2011

                      Evin Discreet

                      Did u see Rasmadis new custom hd25s on his facebook. It’s the adidas with white sent from Senn

                    • April 28, 2011

                      Anonymous

                      No I havent. Link?

                    • April 28, 2011

                      Evin Discreet

                    • April 28, 2011

                      Evin Discreet

                      i think I like the blue and black better with the 3 adidas stripes. Those are the ones I got. The all black ones are somewhat ugly…

                    • April 28, 2011

                      Anonymous

                    • April 28, 2011

                      Evin Discreet

                      LOL…right on

                    • April 27, 2011

                      Anonymous

                      The sunglasses come in soft plastic frame, so that may be more comfortable than a metal frame glasses.

  • Reply April 29, 2011

    Evin Discreet

    Mike…what is your take on the Denon D2000. I heard some good things about them. How would you compare them to the M25? Better all around? Note I could get the Denons for 200 and the hd25 I ordered for 170, so price really is not that big of an issue. Thanks in advance

    • Reply April 29, 2011

      Evin Discreet

      I;m referring to the Denon AH-D2000 by the way

      • Reply April 29, 2011

        Anonymous

        I may be wrong at this, but the D2000 has boomy bass with not much mids
        and vocal presence. Pace is moderate and likewise the PRaT factor.

        Ignoring the discomfort factor on the German Maestro GMP 8.35, I think
        if you want a warmer sounding HD25-1, the GMP 8.35 is the one you should
        go for. The Denon should be far more comfortable though.
        http://www.headfonia.com/the-doppelganger-german-maestro-8-35d/

  • Reply May 1, 2011

    Arjun Jamil

    Hey mike,
    I was thinking that you could help me here. I am just entering the audiophile world, absent much money. i had my eyes fixed on the HD555 for over an year, and now that i read the review, i think i’ll be going for the HD558. The problem is, i use a phone for music and onboard PC audio for gaming. So would i be needing an amp/DAC for the HD558’s?
    My dilemma is better outlined on this thread-
    http://www.erodov.com/forums/need-good-headphones-siberia-v2-vs-hd555-vs-ad700-vs-grado-sr80i-vs-megadolon/41898.html

    • Reply May 2, 2011

      Anonymous

      I skimmed through the thread posting just now.

      Basically the question is between the AD700 and HD558? You’ve been talking how the bass on the HD202 is spot on, and wanting a better model, then go for the HD558. It has the same signature as the HD202 but better overall. The AD700, and all the AD-line up is known for weak bass, so that’s not going to be good for you.

      You also dont need an amp to drive the HD558. Cheers.

      • Reply May 2, 2011

        Arjun Jamil

        I am so thankful that you got back to me.
        Two more questions
        1. Can The HD558’s can achieve full glory without amps? I know that this sounds kiddish, but is the signature same as the HD202’s for the 558’s without the amp?
        2. If i could squeeze an amp into my budget, what do you recommend below the 100$ range? As in i can barely afford a fiio e7. Is it good enough for the HD558?
        Also, i might invest in a bigger better amp, if i save money right now. So if it makes a godly difference, should i buy the fiio e5? I know its small and all, but seems that i might need it.
        Will it make a difference enough to justify its price?

        • Reply May 4, 2011

          Evin Discreet

          Arjun, I have the 202s and I got the 558s. I gave the 558s to my brother as a present and I bought the 598s instead. The 558 do sound better than the HD202. I could tell you this, listening to them on my comp, or on my heaphone speakers or iphone did not sound as good as when hooked up to my TB DSS with bypass.
          E7 is a good product but if u are only going to be using it as an AMP and NOT the DAC (e9, using it w/ comp) then wait a month and buy the E11.

          • Reply May 4, 2011

            Arjun Jamil

            The e7 can act as a usb soundcard and an amp. Plus i can upgrade it with the e9 and atleast spend less money than buying a mav D1 or a hifiman.
            Is that justified?
            The e11 will only be an amp.

            • Reply May 4, 2011

              Evin Discreet

              Exactly dac and amp instead of sc via usb…probably won’t tell u whether our not it’s justified since it’s ur money

  • Reply May 4, 2011

    Evin Discreet

    Mike, my man, received the hd25 org and back they went. OMG they hurt my ears so back. Impossible to wear with glasses, I knew it 🙁

    • Reply May 4, 2011

      Anonymous

      Aw. That sucks man. How was the sound? What do you plan to get next?

      • Reply May 4, 2011

        Evin Discreet

        Sound was good, nice clean bass, was the treble to high? Anyway, I think I’m going to stick to my 30 dollar 202 for closed back and enjoy my 598…have u received the e11 yet?

        • Reply May 5, 2011

          Anonymous

          Okay the HD202 is nice and not so grippy as the HD25-1.

          Yes Ive gotten the E11. Plan to do a review on them soon.

  • Reply May 5, 2011

    Evin Discreet

    I was doing some casual listening on my hd598 and with female vocals. on certain parts (the highs) there is distortion, like it cracks…then I tried my 202s and it was much much less distortion on those parts. I tried downloading the exact same song in FLAC and still the same spots had distortion…is this what they talk about when they say some headphones are less forgiving? did i get a dud? i dont remember my 555s doing this…remember, I don’t have an amp, I use my laptop or sometimes my headphone jack from my old yamaha speakers…any ideas, recommendations?
    thanks

    • Reply May 5, 2011

      Anonymous

      Possible. The HD598 is much more forward in the vocals than the HD202.
      On some recordings that may ultimately induce mild distortions or
      clippings. Not sure where is the fault, the recording or the HD598.

      • Reply May 5, 2011

        Evin Discreet

        Thanks…Mike, I can get the E7 brand new for 70 dollars shipped but I have to know this soon. I just read a brief review about how “amazing” the E11 is my someone on head-fi… I know you havent released your review of the e11 but please let me know if you the amp is way better than the e7, remember, I dont have a DAC and I know the E7 is both…So knowing my situation what would you recommend?

        • Reply May 6, 2011

          Anonymous

          Let me get back to you on that. I’d take some time to listen to the two
          later.

        • Reply May 6, 2011

          Anonymous

          E7 and E11 briefly (with the JH16Pro, yea I know what an overkill. Just
          want to make sure I can hear every single detail because both amps are
          very close in terms of performance).
          1. As I’ve said, very close voicing, very close signature and
          technicalities. (Does the two share the same op-amp? Sounds like they do).
          2. E7 is more lively, has better treble, more spacious. The midrange is
          more congested and confused though.
          3. E11 is warmer, fuller mids, better mids and thicker lows than the E7.
          Overall warmer and slight darker than the E7. I like the signature
          better but I wish it can be as open sounding as the E11.
          4. I can use the E11 to drive a HE-500 till my ears bleed (seriously), I
          can’t do that with the E7
          5. I’d get the E11 just purely because of the mechanical/analog volume knob alone. Getting the volume up and down is a slow business in the E7.

          • Reply May 6, 2011

            Evin Discreet

            Nice man, awesome impressions can you tell me what the hell this means :
            “E7 amp section use a pre- / power amp setup based on a decent opamps. but E11 is 3 channels based on a known-to-be-good-and powerful opamp. If E7 used a really good opamp, then it might be able to compete with E11. But E7 simply isn’t meant to be best sounding, but more practical. If you put the E11 opamp into E7, it will cut down runtime too much to worth the effort. This is why FiiO developed E11 after E7, so people can have a choice for what is more important to them.”

            • Reply May 6, 2011

              Anonymous

              Yes, thanks. Too bad no words about the type of op-amps.

              • Reply May 6, 2011

                Anonymous

                The E11 uses the AD8397, same as the Arrow.

                • Reply May 6, 2011

                  Anonymous

                  Thanks, Eraser! The voicing is very similar to the Arrow.

                  • Reply May 7, 2011

                    Evin Discreet

                    I have the e5 coming in that I didnt pay for. I read somewhere that the e5s sound better than the E7s (better bass or something). Is that false, if not better than is it true it’s really not worth it to get the E7 when you already have the E5?

                    lASTLY Mike, not to beat a dead horse but now after you gave it more of a listen, have you tried the amp with the 598? You said E11 is darker so maybe that makes it a better match with the 598? I also have the 202s. Just need to know bc I have to tell this eBay seller whether I’m buying his E7 🙂

                    • May 7, 2011

                      Anonymous

                      I haven’t listened to the E5 in a very long time, but the quality of the
                      E7 should be better above it. The E5’s bass boost may be bassier, but I
                      think the bass boost was quite boomy on the E5. Not sure, it was
                      something like 2 years ago when I listened to it. Just think about it,
                      the E5 was a very early product from Fiio, and someone is saying the
                      sound quality is better than the E7? Kinda hard to believe.

                      I remember listening to the E1 and my impression then was that the E1 is
                      already better than the E3 and E5.

                      Anyway,
                      If you are looking for an amp for the HD598, I’d recommend you get the
                      JDS Labs Cmoy instead. I compared the E11 to it yesterday and find the
                      JDS Cmoy sound to be better, though it doesn’t have the power output
                      that the E11 has. Hard to beat the quality of through the whole
                      components with SMD parts. All DIY guy knows that.

                      http://www.headfonia.com/60-pack-of-awesome-jdslabs-cmoy/

                    • May 7, 2011

                      Evin Discreet

                      OMG, I had read that review you wrote but I was skeptical about the reliability. Interesting, just a bit concerned with reliability

                    • May 7, 2011

                      Anonymous

                      Let’s take the discussion to the JDSLabs article, shall we?

                      http://www.headfonia.com/60-pack-of-awesome-jdslabs-cmoy/

          • Reply May 6, 2011

            Evin Discreet

            and someone went and copy pasted your comments to me on head-fi, sorry if you didnt want that but I didnt do it

            • Reply May 6, 2011

              Anonymous

              That’s okay man. Everyone’s free to do that on the internet (with proper
              credit).

      • Reply May 5, 2011

        Evin Discreet

        Of crs I would understand if you don’t want to release any thoughts on it yet

  • Reply June 27, 2011

    Hacksaw907

    Just out of curiosity, what’s your take on the SQ between the modded 558 and the stock 598? Because it’s a 120 dollar difference for me where I am, and I’m just wondering if the quality is that much better.

    • Reply June 28, 2011

      Anonymous

      The HD598 is a more refined headphone, but less ideal for pop and
      mainstream music due to the lesser bass. The HD558 is a better all
      rounder. I actually think that although I prefer the HD598, most people
      would be happier with the HD558.

  • Reply July 1, 2011

    joe

    mike..will hd598 scale up with a fiio e11? you said for a portable, the fiio packs quite some juice, right??

    • Reply July 1, 2011

      Anonymous

      Hey Joe,
      The Fiio is powerful but not too refined. The HD598 needs a good refined
      desktop amp to scale up.

      • Reply July 1, 2011

        joe

        for example?? but my budget is rather tight actually.. will fiio e9 or yulong u100 does the job? or do i have to spend past 400$to get good results?

        • Reply July 1, 2011

          Anonymous

          The Schiit Asgard fits the bill, Joe. And it’s quite priced affordably.

          You can get it here: http://www.dontblameyourears.com/

          • Reply September 6, 2013

            donunus

            Since the Asgard 1 is discontinued, do you have any other budget amp recommendations that match well with the 598 and makes them scale up? Do you think a magni paired with a modi will suffice or is that too low in the chain to get the best or at least 90% out of the 598

            • Reply September 7, 2013

              Dave Ulrich

              The Magni, even connected to the HD650 has very little bass. You could try it with the Fiio e9k, which is a very fine entry level amp. I would easily take that over the Magni.

              • Reply September 7, 2013

                donunus

                I have tried the E9 before and liked it quite a bit except that I felt it was missing some life in the mids. Is the E9k an improvement over the old E9? Anyway, thanks for the reply. I’m sure my o2 will be fine with the hd598s for now. I will get another amp in the future only when I get to actually try them out personally unless something so inexpensive like the magni is supposedly really good. However, the lack of bass you mention is not a good thing for anything except for the bassiest of cans so thanks to your comment, I will pass on the Magni for now.

                • Reply September 8, 2013

                  Dave Ulrich

                  Yes, the e9k is a solid improvement over the e9, especially in the mids department. It is also only $109. Good call on wanting to try them out first.

                • Reply September 9, 2013

                  Mike

                  The E9K definitely improves on the mids, and not just slightly. It’s a real improvement.

            • Reply September 9, 2013

              Mike

              From what I’ve heard the Magni is bright and not so good.

  • Reply July 23, 2011

    Sands

    Mike, thank you so much for your reviews and inputs it’s made my decision making  a lot easier.I just bought a hd558.  I have upgraded from a Sennheiser hd570. However I feel like my older hd570 sounds better.  Am I missing something here. The HD570 is also a lot more comfortable with it not clamping down on my head like the hd558 does.In comparision to the HD570, I find the hd558 a tad bright. The hd570 also feels a lot more open and airer than the hd558. I really like the sound of the hd570 and was looking for an upgrade but the hd558 dissappointed me. Would you consider the sound of the hd570 to be neutral? I am not a bass head. Bass equivalent to  the hd570 is enough for me. I mainly listen to pop & hip hop.What do you suggest? Here are my options Do i keep the hd558 and wait for it to burn in?Do i keep the HD558 and mod it by removing the foam strip?Do i upgrade to something elsel? My budget is $350 which should buy me a pair of hd650. I have a budget of $200 for a headphone amp as well. I would rather not spend so much unless I have to or provided I find a marked improvement in what I hear.

  • Reply August 11, 2011

    Powdercrazed

    Thank you for this informative review. My question for you is, am I better off buying the Sennheiser HD 558 or the HD 595? I know you don’t feature the 595 in this review, but at the moment it is possible to buy either set of headphones for the same price, at just under $140 USD. Which would you buy, and why?

    • Reply August 12, 2011

      Anonymous

      Briefly,
      HD558: warmer, more bass body, darker.
      HD595: brighter, thinner, more into treble.

      • Reply August 19, 2011

        Powdercrazed

        Thanks. After seeing the thread on head-fi which proves that the HD 555 and 595 have identical drivers, I decided to save some money and go with the HD555 and use the leftover money to buy Koss KSC75 clip-ons for jogging. The HD555’s have 20-25 hours on them and keep sounding better and better. I will try the foam mod once they are fully broken in.

        I may have preferred the sound of the 558, but I couldn’t justify paying $170 for a new pair on Amazon or $140 for refurbished on Ebay, when was able to buy the 555 new for $100 with the same sound quality as the 595.

        Would I see any improvement in sound quality for the 555’s with the $22 Fiio E5 amp? Which amp would you recommend for the HD555, if any at all?

        • Reply August 20, 2011

          Anonymous

          It’s true that the price difference between the old 555 and the new 558 is quite big,but drivers are just a part of the story. The new headphones have a soundstage performance that is vastly improved due to the better design on the housing. So it is not just a facelift remodel, the housing design and the grill shape actually plays an important part to the overall acoustics.
          Now for an amp, please gife it something better than the $20 Fiio. You can try reading the sub $100 portable amps article for recommendations.
          http://www.headfonia.com/music-on-a-budget-sub-100-portable-amps-shootout/

  • Reply September 6, 2011

    Andros

    Which of them are better to listen electronic music, like trance or techo, which are more melodic than electro, dubstep… Or aren’t these audiophones designed for electronic music?

  • Reply September 20, 2011

    Pedro_96123

    HD558 is good for gaming like the HD555 ?

    and for rock / metal like AC/DC, Metallica, Megadeth… they sound good ?

    • Reply September 21, 2011

      Anonymous

      Hi Pedro,
      I definitely won’t use the HD55x with rock metal. Go with the HD25-1 for those.

      • Reply September 21, 2011

        Pedro_96123

        I play a lot, what about an AD700 for gaming, and a Grado for rock/metal ?

        I’m new with headphones 😉
        Sometimes i listen to classical music, which i think the AD700 can be good too
        any suggestion to help me ? 😀

  • Reply September 28, 2011

    Anonymous

    Copy and pasted from another comment that I wrote: 

    “Okay for the last time: 
    HD558 mod vs HD598. Still very different, and yes the HD598 is still the better sounding headphone. Sennheiser engineers know what they are doing and a simple foam removal mod isn’t going to do it. As for the HD600 vs HD598, The HD598 excels in certain areas like vocal and soundstage depth, soundstage image. But overall the HD600 is still the higher end headphone. The HD598 is the newer release and I suppose Sennheiser have learned a lot more things from the HD600 days and that’s why it’s able to accomplish some things better like soundstage and vocal but overall it’s still proper that the HD600 earns the higher model number. I would brand the HD598 as a very fine Hifi headphone. It sounds good and among the best sounding headphones I’ve listened to. The HD600 on the other hand is a solid reference-class headphone and in that sense it’s a higher up headphone than the HD598 is. The HD600 still sounds very musical, but on top of the musicality you get added points such as a far more accurate timbre and a more proper bass impact both of which the HD598 doesn’t have. 
    Now interestingly if you happen to have a $2,000 headphone amp, the HD598 scales up better than the HD600.. and again I suspect that’s some of the things Sennheiser engineers have learned over the time which they didn’t quite have when they designed the HD600. But for most people, I doubt they’ll be pairing the HD598 with a $2K amp. “

    • Reply September 6, 2013

      donunus

      Hi Mike, have you tried some budget amps that match especially well with the hd598? Maybe a dac/amp combo perhaps? I am going to revisit the 5xx family again by picking up a 598 and I want to make sure I am at least 90% there in terms of squeezing as much from them as possible.

      • Reply September 9, 2013

        Mike

        Try it with the Cmoy

        or the Fiio E10.

        Both work very well with the HD5XX series.

  • Reply October 1, 2011

    Kristianssss

    HD555 or HD558. 
    I am planning to use them for music, wich one should i choose? can i play them at my iphone?

  • Reply October 12, 2011

    Asda

    You can, but you will look plain silly walking on the street with those on your head. Not to mention the adapter plug is almost as long as the iphone

  • Reply October 12, 2011

    Asda

    You can, but you will look plain silly walking on the street with those on your head. Not to mention the adapter plug is almost as long as the iphone

  • Reply October 13, 2011

    Syakir Zainol

    Hi Mike,

    If I already have the Senn HD 202, Superlux HD660 & HD668B, Fanny Wang On-Ear, would either of the HD558/HD598 compliments these? I listen  to pop, acoustic, classics, old school rocks & vocals.

  • Reply October 13, 2011

    Syakir Zainol

    Hi Mike,

    If I already have the Senn HD 202, Superlux HD660 & HD668B, Fanny Wang On-Ear, would either of the HD558/HD598 compliments these? I listen  to pop, acoustic, classics, old school rocks & vocals.

    • Reply October 13, 2011

      Anonymous

      The HD598 for vocals.

      Or you can get a Grado, or an HD25-1.

      • Reply October 13, 2011

        Syakir Zainol

        HD598 for vocals, got it! The Grado, i thought theyre close to the hd660 in some way?

        • Reply October 13, 2011

          Anonymous

          The Grado, can be similar yes, but still quite unique in itself. Or get the Ales MS-1.

          • Reply October 14, 2011

            Syakir Zainol

            Thank you. All of my purchase above is based on this site reviews (except for the Wang which I won in a facebook contest!). Youve been very helpful.

            • Reply October 14, 2011

              Anonymous

              Thanks, Syakir.

              On second thought I would recommend the MS1 over the Grados.

  • Reply October 24, 2011

    Duna21

    Hi,

    Between ath m-50 and mod hd558, which give refine sweet & full mids and good bass?

    • Reply October 24, 2011

      Anonymous

      Duna,
      Between the two, I think the mids and the bass are roughly comparable, meaning one is not particularly better than the other, though obviously the headphones have each have their own distinct presentation.

      • Reply October 24, 2011

        Duna21

        thank u, in that case i go get which is cheaper :p

  • Reply December 25, 2011

    Donfoster4444

    I have the senn hd202, hd555, hd598 and koss porta pros.  The koss porta pros are good for running and sound is excellent for under 50 bucks. Hd 202 have a good bass being they are closed and sound is 7 out of 10. Now getting down to business with sound quality, here is how I stack them up. Having tried other peoples sony’s, ad700 etc etc, I found the sennheiser has the best all around sound. The hd555 is pleasant to the ears and sound reproduction is excellent. If you are a basshead, buy a amp for it. Just breaking in the hd598 and wow, can it get any better? For the price, NO!!!! The highs are crisp and great balance. Mids can’t be touched by anyone else and Bass is great. Paid 181.00 with shipping and would pay the retail price of 349.00 if I had to. Sennheiser hd 598 flat out play music back the way my ears like to hear it. It is perfectly balanced and you can hear a pin drop if it was recorded. Thank you Sennheiser for my last pair of headphones I will ever need.
    P.S. I’ve had a pair of koss pro-4AA since the 70’s but to heavy and earpads had a blow out. Sound is still outstanding.

    • Reply December 26, 2011

      Mike

      Don,
      I’m glad you’re enjoying your headphones. A lot of people find the Senn HD5xx series to be great mid-fi headphones.

  • Reply January 15, 2012

    Guest

    I have both the HD 558s and the HD 598s and have came to the same conclusion as you for the most part except for one – I found the HD 558s a little brighter. The FR graph on headroom seems to say so as well.

    Am I crazy or can we just attribute this to the differences in our ears?

    • Reply January 16, 2012

      Mike

      Hi,
      The 558s has more top treble, but the HD598 has a more forward and present low treble, and overall the signature is brighter than the HD558. That’s one explanation I can think of.

  • Reply January 18, 2012

    Pepindo

    Hello Mike. I decided to prowe what you said: “the stock HD558 configuration is the better version”. Well I never heard this headphones as modded ones. I tried to remove the foam from one channel (left only) of my HD 558 and the difference is markable. The modded channel was louder and much better in mid frequencies. My opinion is that the modded version of the 558 is much better….I will try more testing, but still, thans for your review, it is the best one in the whole internet:D

    • Reply January 19, 2012

      Mike

      Glad you’re enjoying the reviews, Pepindo. 🙂

  • Reply January 24, 2012

    Adrian

    Hi Mike,
    Just wanna ask a few questions. I’m confused with this three headphones…Alessandro MS1i, Senn HD 555 or ATH M50? I just wanna know your thought about this.
    Thx

    • Reply January 25, 2012

      Mike

      Adrian,
      All three headphones are really popular and you can’t go wrong with either one of them.
      If you like sparkly treble detail, go with the MS1i
      If you like full mids and lows, go with the HD555
      If you like a more linear sound, go with the M50

      • Reply January 25, 2012

        Adrian

        Ok Mike
        Thanks for the info 😀

  • Reply January 25, 2012

    Alex

    My current headphones are HD555. I am listening to almost all genres, mostly classical/soundtracks and rock/metal (50/50). I like the sound of HD555, but I’d like something better. I’ve been reading many reviews, comments and articles (this site is exceptionally helpful) but I still can’t decide what to get. Are HD598 or HD600 safe bets, or should I consider something more ‘rocking’ like Grado SR325is? I heard that Grado aren’t very comfortable, which is quite important for me since I’ll be using them more than 5h a day. There is no possibility for me to listen to them before purchase. I might be considering buying/building external amp if my new headphones requires it to sound good (now I have only Fiio e10).

    Also, excuse me for my imperfect english. I’m not a native speaker 🙂

    • Reply January 26, 2012

      Mike

      Well,
      What do you think about the HD555’s sound? What do you think is lacking from it? If you find it to be “perfect” but just want the same sound upgraded, then go with the Senns.
      Personally I would check out the Grados so I’ll have a headphone with a different sound. Try the SR125 or the Alessandro MS1 first, don’t have to go to the SR325.

  • Reply February 10, 2012

    Ripu Daman

    Hey Mike I am looking for new headphones, i am thinking of buying HD558 current I have HD201 so any 5 series will be a huge leap, i mainly use them form my laptop for music movies & games, I love good sound experiences that why I am thinking to go for Mid range headphones & moreover I am in India & we don’t have wide range to choose from, do suggest if there is some better option other then this  

    • Reply February 11, 2012

      Mike

      The HD558 is very popular and moving from the HD201 I think you will hear a BIG improvement, Ripu.

  • Reply February 25, 2012

    dragos

    Hi
    Between the HD558 an Grado sr60i what would you chose, taking into account that i listen to all sorts of music and i have money for only one headphone(bands like Nightwish, Disturbed, but also Tiesto, Armin van Buuren and sometimes clasical especialy piano)? I use only Ipod and laptop as source. And just for my curiosity…did you had the chance to listen to HD518, because some people prefer them to the 558? 
    Thank you.

    • Reply February 25, 2012

      Mike

      Hi Drago,
      I would definitely go with the HD558 for your music. Yes some may like the HD518 better, but in essence it is a 558 with less bass (I didn’t have the 518 when I did this review, that is why it’s not included — probably should do an update). You can choose which model you like, but in my opinion the HD558 has the more proper bass quantity. It’s still far from a basshead headphone, but just enough bass. 

      • Reply February 28, 2012

        dragos

        Hi again,
        I just bought the HD558. I have maybe 2 hours of listening and……wooww….they sound amazing. The female voice is just superb, it has so much more detail (and drama if it makes any sense)than what i was used to until now(jvc ha-rx500). The bass does not sink everything else. 
        I am very pleased of how they sound, since i was expecting to observe some difference, but not so big.
        Have a nice sounding day:)

        • Reply February 28, 2012

          David Ulrich

           I actually had a 518 for awhile.  Connected to a HM-101, I actually found the bass to be perfectly adequate for rock (indie or otherwise) and classical.  Where I felt the 518 lacked was the vocals, without some strong EQ’ing, felt like they were coming from behind the music.  I found them too laid back.  That is why I think the 598 sounds so appealing.  As long as the bass isn’t any less then the 518, it sounds like a great headphone, with a solid amp.

          • Reply February 28, 2012

            Mike

            The voicing of the HD598 is different than the HD558 and 518. I agree that I find the vocal on the 518 and 558 to be too laid back, except you’re listening to vocals on classicals (Opera and such). With the HD598, the vocal is more present, more forward. The bass, although not less than the HD518, is presented differently. I think perhaps this is because the HD598’s overall voicing is more mid-centric, while the HD558-518 is a mild v-shaped.

        • Reply February 28, 2012

          Mike

          Good to hear that, dragos. 😉

  • Reply March 3, 2012

    Denis Blairon

    Hi Mike, I’m ready to jump on the audiophile train, and I’ve been reading about it for quite a while now. I’m mostly listening to indie/rock/alternative (whatever that still means) on my computer, so I’d like to have some advice. 
    First, about the headphones. I’ve read your article on how you modded the 558, would they be “better” for me than the 598? Feel free to recommend other headphones too, in the same price range.
    Also, for budget purposes when I bought my computer, I don’t have a dedicated soundboard. So I was thinking about the Fiio E10. Think it’s a good idea?Thanks a lot for helping me out!

  • Reply May 20, 2012

    Mark Ma

    what do you think hd 558 vs hifiman HE 300? Do you think the 558 is good for rock?

    • Reply May 22, 2012

      Mike

      The 558 is slightly smoother overall but the tonal balance and sound signature of the HE300 is more right for a wider range of music, I feel.

  • Reply July 26, 2012

    Raiden

    Hi Mike !

    Sorry for my off topic question but what do you think about this headphone??

    Sony MDR-XB700

    http://www.sony.co.uk/product/hps-extra-bass-and-dj/mdr-xb700

    Worth the money, is a full basshead headphone ?

    • Reply July 26, 2012

      Mike

      It’s very nice, good bass, but I wouldn’t say it’s a full bass head headphone.
      What are you looking for?

      • Reply July 26, 2012

        Raiden

        Thanks for the fast reply,

        Well I was looking to get a new headphone dedicated for music.

        I was looking for Senn HD558 which I think is far away better than the Sony MDR-XB700 in terms of sound quality, but I’m not sure if I have the good enough “DAP” for that Sennheiser.

        I want to use it with a Desktop PC using a Creative SB X-Fi Titanium F-Pro and I listen techno/minimal, pop and sometimes rock/punk music.

        NOTE: I will like to add I never had a open drivers headphones and I’d like the bass presence

        Thanks

        • Reply July 27, 2012

          Raiden

          Thanks for the fast reply,

          Well I was looking to get a new headphone dedicated for music.

          I was looking for Senn HD558 which I think is far away better than the Sony MDR-XB700 in terms of sound quality, but I’m not sure if I have the good enough “DAP” for that Sennheiser.

          I want to use it with a Desktop PC using a Creative SB X-Fi Titanium F-Pro (so I don’t have a dedicated AMP yet) and I listen techno/minimal, pop and sometimes rock/punk music.

          NOTE: I will like to add I never had a open drivers headphones and I’d like the bass presence

          Thanks

          • Reply July 28, 2012

            Mike

            Raiden,
            Have you auditioned the two headphones? Or are you just making an assumption that the 558 is going to be better than the XB700?

            • Reply July 30, 2012

              Raiden

              Mike,

              No, I didn’t had the chance, I’m just assuming.

              Looking for your advise…

              • Reply July 30, 2012

                Mike

                The XB700 is actually pretty good and IMO fits modern pop music better than the HD558. It is not a bass head headphone IMO.

  • Reply August 29, 2012

    jack

    hi can you please tell me which are better in sound senn 558 or AKG K 240MKII?

    • Reply August 30, 2012

      Ken Stuart

      Apples and oranges. The AKG is very accurate and detailed, somewhat lacking in bass response, excellent for monitoring live sound or recording. The Sennheiser is more for listening enjoyment, it is less accurate, but has better imaging and soundstage, more bass, somewhat rolled off high end to make long-term listening less fatiguing.

      • Reply August 31, 2012

        jack

        thanks for the reply, thats the thing i wanted to know, thank you , i need a headphone for home listening, for relax, not something that has overpowered bass like the DJ headphones do, i owned the 240MKII i realy loved them, but i decided to return them becase they were not much comfortable on my head , i had senn 518 before and they fitted me much better so i decided to look on these. I am just searching for a litle more fun sound than the 240 have and for diffrent comfort. Sry for my eng.

  • Reply October 20, 2012

    Ryan Yang

    Hey Mike I wonder if it worth the extra dollars to get 598 when I only use them for watching movies on my laptop/iPad. And which one’s more comfortable and suitable for extended hours. Thanks a Lot.

    • Reply October 20, 2012

      Mike

      Just go for the 558. Sound signature is better too for movies.

  • Reply December 30, 2012

    Eli Segal

    What would be a better HP all around for Rock/Pop/Indie the 558 or 598? Thx

  • Reply January 12, 2013

    moos

    Thanks for the review Mike!

    I’m still not decided yet, so if you would help me I would really appreciate it. Which one would be better for gaming / movies? 558 or 598?

    Thanks

    • Reply January 12, 2013

      Mike

      558 should be better

      Sent from my mobile device. Sorry for any mistype.

  • […] and you will definitely be coming away with a great value purchase for your money. The next step-up model HD598 is relatively pricier than the 558 in the real world, it goes without saying that if you are […]

  • Reply March 9, 2013

    Arthuryae

    I’m going to get either the 558 or the 598, so far I’m leaning towards the 598, but I’ve heard it can be heard from across the room easily. I like to be the only one who hears it when playing piano, but I don’t want to give up the sound quality (I really love bright sounding headphones.) What do you think? Will it be easily heard from a distance?

    • Reply March 9, 2013

      Trent_D

      As someone who has an open-backed Sennheiser, there are times when the music is almost as loud on the outside as it is in my head. They don’t leak sound, they pour it. Plus, if I were you, I would want more bass with piano music. The hd598 is suppose to be a bit light on the impact. The recently reviewed Soundmagic 100 is closed, and might be a good option.

      • Reply March 9, 2013

        Arthuryae

        I definitely don’t want closed beck headphones, I have open ones (that are just about broken) now and I like open ones way more. Say, for example, I were listening to a podcast or something, could the words be clearly heard from 10 feet away?

        • Reply March 9, 2013

          Trent_D

          I don’t think so. Not a podcast anyway. But, if the 5×8 series is anything like the 6×0 series, it isn’t a good headphone to listen to if other people have things they want to hear in the room.

          • Reply March 9, 2013

            Arthuryae

            Yeah, that’s not the case. Thanks for the help!

  • Reply June 23, 2013

    Bobby

    Hi mike,
    great review by you.i am really confused between two models hd558 and 598. Both are great headphones but Iam unable to decide which one should i go for.I need a little help in choosing,which one would be better for music/gaming/movie.Should i spent extra amount of dollars( if u sugggest me 598 ) for a small difference between them.give me suggestion based upon my usage.

    thanks in advance..:)

    • Reply June 24, 2013

      Mike

      Bobby,
      The 558 should be better for gaming music and movies.

      • Reply March 14, 2015

        Guest

        So Mike, what are 598’s kind of best for?

        • Reply March 14, 2015

          dalethorn

          The 598 has a more airy hi-fi sound with less bass, compared to 558. So the tip from Mike was good.

  • Reply July 13, 2013

    Kevin Lee

    hey, i have the ath m50 and hd 558. Which type of music are these cans best suited for?

    • Reply July 14, 2013

      dalethorn

      I think jazz and classical are safe bets. Some pop music, and rock and metal, can have hot sections especially with bright percussions, and the M50 can be a bit treble-peaky with some of that music. Sennheiser 558 should be similar to the 600, at least in the treble curve, yes?

      • Reply September 6, 2013

        donunus

        the 558 is brighter than the hd600. They are much more immediate sounding although less refined and slightly more peaky sounding although they are still very smooth. I love the 5xx series.

  • Reply October 13, 2014

    Lezhonka

    I have Sennheiser HD558. I want to use it to listen to my music on my iPhone 6 and iMac. Should I get an applifier/DAC to bring it to full potential? If yes, what portable setup would you recommend to a newbie?

    • Reply October 13, 2014

      dalethorn

      You could get the low-cost ($300 USD) Beyerdynamic A200p DAC with headphone amp, or one of the several portable DAC/amps that are iPhone compatible that cost $700 or more. But while some of those may work with the iMac, they won’t give the best results with high-resolution music.

      • Reply October 13, 2014

        Headfonia_L.

        Like Dale Says, I wouldn’t invest in a high end Cypherlabs righ for that headphone. Just get an iphone/apple compatible dac like the A200P

    • Reply March 14, 2015

      Marko Icelic

      For that kind of combination, I think the very good choice is some Fiio amp. E12, for example! It’s about 150$.
      Greetings!

  • Reply October 19, 2014

    jott

    Hey Mike,
    do the think the HD598 would be a good choice for me?
    Currently im testing the Philips Fidelio L1 and like its smooth, warm sound but the bass-presence is too much for me, even if metal/rock/alternative are my favourite music genres.

Leave a Reply