Sennheiser HD 560S Review

Sennheiser HD 560S

In this article we review the Sennheiser HD 560S. It’s Sennheiser’s newest headphone, selling for only €199 / $199 USD.


Disclaimer: The Sennheiser HD 560S headphone was sent to us by Sennheiser directly, in exchange for our honest review. Sennheiser is not related to Headfonia in any way. 


Everyone who is into headphones surely has heard of the German Sennheiser. Sennheiser has been active for 75 years and they recently celebrated that with a special Anniversary Edition of their modern classic headphone, the HD 800 S. Check it out here.

Sennheiser is one of the most respected companies in audio and in the past years, Sennheiser has positively surprised us with a lot of top quality products such as the HD 800, the HD 800 S, the HD 820, the HD 660 S and several HD 5-series headphones. Sennheiser has also been active on the TWS market and the Momentum True Wireless 2 scores pretty well there.

We’ve of course featured and reviewed many Sennheiser products here on HFN. My personal favorite Sennheiser headphones are the HD 800, the HD 800 S, the HD 650 (all on tubes) and the HD 660S. In today’s review we’ll be taking a closer look at the HD 560S, their new full sized, open headphone of the 5-series.

HD 560S

When Sennheiser a few weeks ago informed me of the upcoming new HD 560S, they referred to it as the little brother of the HD 660S and not directly as one of the 5-series headphones. With the HD 560S, Sennheiser really wants to show they have an entry level audiophile headphone, close to the HD 660S.

The new Sennheiser HD 560S is a full-sized over-ear dynamic headphone, with angled 38mm drivers. The voice coil of the new HD 560S is specifically developed to work optimal regardless of the source used. Actually with its 120 Ω impedance and 110SPL it can be used with virtually any audio source. But more on that later. The HD 560S according to Sennheiser are a reference-grade headphone for analytical listening sessions, but we’ll find out all about that in the part on sound later in this review.

Fromm Sennheiser: The HD 560S is tailor-made for listeners who need to understand a tune in all its details, from the recording studio to the sound file. It aims to show how a track is intended to be heard, rather than delivering an interpretation offered up by a headphone’s sound design. The HD 560S’ transducers are specifically tuned for accuracy, offering dependable A/B comparisons of mixes, sources, and media formats. Its open-back earcups facilitate a natural expansion of sound waves, while their angled alignment recreates the optimal triangular listening position of loudspeakers for a wide, articulate soundstage — without the need for room treatment.

Technical Specs

Ear coupling Around-ear

Weight 240 g (8.4 oz)

Frequency response 6 Hz – 38 kHz (-10 dB vs 1 KHz)

Transducer principle Dynamic, closed

Transducer size 38 mm

Sound pressure level (SPL) 110 dB (1 kHz/1 Vrms)

Impedance 120 Ω

THD (1 kHz, 100 dB) 0.05 % (1 kHz/90 dB SPL)

The Box, Accessories & Price

The HD 560S comes in a very simple box. Inside you will find the headphones (protected by plastic), a safety guide and a 3.5mm adapter with a flexible 15cm lead (std plug is 6.3mm). It’s very basic

The new HD 560S sets you back €200 Euro or $200 USD. To be honest I only found out about its price after I listened to it already, and that was quite a nice surprise as I going on the sound, expected it to be more expensive. That being said, this $200 USD price makes the HD 560S sit perfectly between the HD 559 and the HD 660S.

For maximum versatility, the HD 560S is equipped with a detachable 3-meter cable and a 6.3mm plug. It’s long and sometimes bugs me when working at my desk, but it at the same time allows me to walk around in my office without having to unplug the headphone. Anyway, you can use a different cable with it, you have to take into account the closing mechanism on the HD 560S’ plug. It however also does show that Sennheiser sees this more as a home use headphone, and not a portable solution. The article continues on the next page. Click here or use the jumps below.

4.2/5 - (185 votes)

Lieven is living in Europe and he's the leader of the gang. He's running Headfonia as a side project next to his full time day job in Digital Marketing & Consultancy. He's a big fan of tube amps and custom inear monitors and has published hundreds of product reviews over the years.


  • Reply September 29, 2020


    [From the article] “Technically the HD 650 to me still is the superior headphone and especially the sound stage, depth and layering here are at a higher level.”

    I never found the soundstage of the HD650 very impressive. Instead of giving the impression of a big room or theater, it was more like listening in a narrow hallway. Sennheiser claims the 560s has a much wider soundstage, and I read your quote above suggesting the HD650 is better.

    • Reply September 29, 2020


      I for one also think HD650 performs rather mediocre in soundstage. They sound very shut-in for an open back headphone.

      • Reply October 2, 2020


        I have phillips x2hr’s for movies n gaming, senns hd25s for general listening to music (great sound in my book) and ath-m50x for mixing audio. Happy with them but……….would the hd-560s be a good upgrade from the hd-25s for general listening to music?

    • Reply September 29, 2020


      I mean the depth of the 650 vs the 560S, not the width. Sorry if that wasn’t clear

      • Reply October 22, 2020


        I agree with Lieven. I have heard HD650 on various setups and its staging, especially depth depends on thr setup. It can be in your head or it can project a convincimg image in front of you.

  • Reply September 29, 2020


    You mentioned the Sundara in closing. I’m assuming you feel the Sundara is superior even if it’s not a direct competitor?

    • Reply September 29, 2020


      The Sundara has a different technology and sound, and is more expensive. So I didn’t want to compare them. I have heard good Sundara’s and bad ones, but the sound signature is different from the HD 560S. Both are great headphones.

      • Reply September 29, 2020


        Okay, thanks for confirming!

  • Reply September 30, 2020

    Michael Walton

    Many thanks for a great review. I currently have IBasso dx150 ( amp 6) and enjoy it with Hifman Re 600 earbuds but looking for a fuller sound with headphones. Would Hd560 add extra warmth to the mix which I am trying to avoid ? . I was hoping for a bit brighter sounding signature headphone and which the Dx150 could easily power. ?
    I really enjoy your reviews

    • Reply October 7, 2020


      There will be no extra warmth with the 560S

  • Reply September 30, 2020


    How do these headphones compare to the HD 599? I own these and look at the HD 560s as a potential upgrade. Are they an upgrade, or should I go for a more expensive headphone like the Sundara?

    • Reply December 5, 2021


      they’re only an upgrade if you want a more analytical sounding headphone.

  • Reply October 1, 2020


    How would it compare with the DT 880 Premium 250 ohm? On DIY Audio Heaven they compare very similarly in the graphs except the 560s showing better bass extension and the DT 880 showing more elevated treble.

    Curious how the two compare in person.

    • Reply October 7, 2020


      Don’t have the DT880 250, sorry

  • Reply October 5, 2020

    Paul B.

    How would you rate the HD 560S against the HD 600? I own a pair of HD 600s and love them but sometimes crave for a bit more “meat” and bass weight without sacrificing the 600s numerous strengths and overall character. Do the HD 560Ss tick those boxes or would you steer me straight towards the HD 650 instead?

    • Reply October 5, 2020


      Actually sounds like you need the HD 660s 🙂

  • Reply October 5, 2020

    Paul B.

    Thanks for the prompt reply. Interesting – I was kind of put off by InnerFidelity’s (RIP) Tyll Hertsens’ less than complimentary review of the HD 600S and, for some reason, I’d got the impression that the 660S is actually leaner than the 600, but in your opinion that’s not the case? Not sure my pockets are deep enough to run to the 600S at this time…

    Paul B.

    • Reply October 7, 2020


      To me the 660s doesn’t sound leaner, no.

  • Reply October 6, 2020


    For me this headphone is a bigger deal, than the HD58x Jubilee was at launch.
    It sounds EVEN closer to the HD660s, actually It might infact be EVEN BETTER than the HD 660S. And personally I find my HD560S to have a very deep, and very well defined bass. Sort of like a vibrating thick and deep left-to-right type of bass. Lots of bass in the sub bass region too. These are definitely more neutral than the HD660s which were morr on the bright side (but in a good way ofc), I just find neutral headphones to be overall superior than colored phones’. Highly recommend it. It’s that BIG of a sweet deal yes, for such a little price it rivals the hd58x and hd 660s, and its almost the same price as the hd58x. So definitely a sweet deal. Suggest you all go out and buy it now! You wont get more price-to-performance than this. I own this and the Fidelio X3, and while the X3 are a better sounding ‘Fun’-headphone over all, I think HD560S will give you more natural, neutral enjoyment.

    And while it has no way as much bass as the X3, it more than delivers on the imaging, stereo seperation, low-end, mids, clarity, etc And i still think the HD560S has more bass than any other ‘sennheiser’-headphone on the market now. I’d say the HD560S is like a cross between the HD580 and a HD660S. It doesn’t feel or sound like a 500-series phone. This phone might as well be above the 700 series in drivers alone. And for that price! Wow

  • Reply October 18, 2020

    Shaun Moss

    Great review. Totally through a wrench in what I was thinking to get next. How do you think they would compare to the meze 99 classic? Or the hd6XX? So you think a dragonfly cobalt would be able to drive these from a phone? Thanks again

    • Reply December 2, 2020

      Major Diablo


      Can’t comment about the Meze or the HD6XX but I’m driving my HD560S with the Cobalt and the match is great. Plenty of power, if that’s your concern.

      I find the soundstage not-so-great, not an improvement respect to my SR80e; apparently the Fidelio X2HR should be better in that field. But I’m happy with the performance overall for $199, just a few hours into them. Hope this helps.

  • Reply January 12, 2021


    According to the frequency charts this one could be a contender to the DT 1990 (somewhere between A- and B-Pads minus the 8k peak)? Of course the build quality of the Beyer is way above the HD 560s. But aside from that? Any opinions?

    • Reply May 26, 2021


      I have the 560s and 1990pro, the 1990 pro (analytical pads) has way more high extension, less low mids than the 560s. The 560s has more sub low bass (at least, hearable sub bass)
      The 1990 pro sounds more expensive because of the highs extension (and bump at 8k)
      The soundstage is also bigger on the 1990pro. The sennheiser seems to stay more in your head.
      Also the sennheisers seem to have a bump at 2 to 3K to my ears, which can be fatiguing over time. Maybe that’s just my ears…
      I use the 1990pro in conjunction with sonarworks and that makes a huge difference, especially in the low end. Sonarworks don’t have a profile for the 560s yet. I will try that out once the profile is available.

  • Reply June 10, 2021


    Aaron: you simply have no clue! I am using the HD 650 since 2010. You need a decent AMP for it – i am using the Lehmann Headphone Amp, and it’s awesome !

  • Reply December 5, 2021


    Bagged myself the HD560S with 50% off during Black Friday, listening to them right now off a dongle DAC with ALC5868 chip… sound fairly smooth with good treble extension but not harsh. Defo feel like I could do with more power so I have ordered the FiiO E10K Type-C.

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