Home Headphone Comparisons Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX [Definitive Guide]

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX [Definitive Guide]

by Stuart Charles Black
Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Don't forget to share if you found it helpful!

Updates:

  • 8/27/19. Grammar/spelling fixes.
  • 9/4/19. Added Video Comparison/Shootout.
  • 9/13/19. Added Notes.
  • 1/21/21. Article Cleanup.
  • 2/2/21. Article/link cleanup.

3,547-word post, approx. 8 min. read

Hey there friend, and Welcome aboard!!

Before we get into the Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX, grab a snack, sit back and relax because…

You’ve come to the right place!!

Table of Contents

Click to navigate the article!!

Introduction
Specifications
Build
Comfort
Sound & Imaging
Photo Gallery
Video Comparison
Amplification & Genre Pairing
Stu’s Notepad
Final Word

Now without further ado, let’s get rolling!!

Introduction

I’ve owned the Sennheiser HD 600 since December of 2016. It’s been a mostly great relationship. The 600’s are fine headphones and they will likely continue to stand the test of time for many reasons.

However, there are a few things I don’t like about them. We’ll also get into that.

Long story short, I got the chance to demo Massdrop’s newer HD 6XX iteration. Big shoutout and thanks to Shawn Quint for sending me them!

Shawn is a real nice guy who frequents my blog. I enjoy talking with him about all things audio, and he was nice enough to entrust me with his baby. No, not a real live baby mind you; I’m talking about the headphone. Lol.

You see, Shawn was doubly sure to send these bad boys packaged as if they could withstand a nuclear holocaust. Have to make sure we can still listen to music in the midst of all that rubble and destruction, right? 😛

Seriously though, I’ve been loving my time with these and wanted to do an A/B comparison to the venerable HD 600 that I have in the studio.

Let’s get into the specs first!

Specifications

Sennheiser HD 600

Sennheiser HD600 vs. HD6XX

HD600.

  • Price: Check Amazon! | Check Sweetwater! | Check B&H! | Check eBay!
  • Type: Open Back.
  • Fit: Circumaural (Over-Ear).
  • Impedance: 300 Ohms.
  • Sensitivity: 97 dB/mW.
  • Frequency response: 12Hz – 39000 kHz.
  • Material: Metal grilles, carbon fiber, velour earpads, plastic.
  • Color: Speckled blue finish, black.
  • Cable Length: 3m (9.84 ft.)
  • Weight: 9.17 Oz.

Sennheiser HD 6XX

Sennheiser HD600 vs. HD6XX

HD6XX.

  • Price: Check Drop!
  • Type: Open Back.
  • Fit: Circumaural (Over-Ear).
  • Impedance: 300 Ohms.
  • Sensitivity: 103dB/mW.
  • Frequency Response: 10 Hz – 41kHz.
  • Material: Metal grilles, carbon fiber, velour earpads, plastic.
  • Color: Midnight Blue, Black.
  • Cable Length: 6 ft. (1.8m)
  • Weight: 9.2 oz (260g).

What about the build?

Build

Fortunately, not a lot has changed here in terms of overall build quality which is a good thing. What has changed boils down to some cosmetic differences and other more subtle nuances.

We’ve still got the same headband adjustment, velour ear cups, and grilles. Like its older brothers, all parts are still replaceable here which has always been a huge selling point. You could theoretically have one of these for the rest of your natural-born life given proper care!

The headphone looks, feels, and functions exactly like an HD 600 or 650. Related: Sennheiser HD 600 vs. 650.

The cups move in the same way as the original too (slightly in and out and nothing more), just enough to ensure a snug fit on various sized melons. Your big melon is included here. 😀 (Don’t worry, I was accused of having an “Apple Ass Head” once). Your secret’s safe with me.

Both have the Sennheiser logo engraved at the top of the headband, but on the 6XX it’s a bit harder to see. I’m not sure if this is intentional as to keep the headphone more low profile or not.

I personally don’t like it and thought it should have stood out more. It’s black and kind of clashes with the very dark blue/midnight blue/gray/whatever color it is apparent on the rest of the headphones.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

On the inside of the right headband adjustment, we have the “Massdrop” logo silk-screened in white.

On the outside of the headband adjustment at the bottom, the familiar lettering appears again inside of Sennheiser’s ‘ol rectangle, giving the headphone its distinct look. It reads “HD 6XX”, which hearkens back to the “HD 600” lettering on the older model.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

The other similarity is that both say “Made In Ireland” on each side of the inner headband adjustment, right near the start of the padding. You do really have to look rather closely for it, but it is there.

The differences here are five-fold:

Color.

The speckled blue finish is now replaced with a “midnight blue” color. In the dark or not in direct sunlight, it appears to be very dark gray or black.

I personally am not a huge fan of the color but would still purchase the headphone because I’m not a total snob. 😛 Overall, the 6XX is more simplistic and utilitarian in appearance vs. the more retro-looking HD 600.

Wiring

The wiring got a much-needed upgrade. Instead of the archaic, cheap, and flimsy wiring present on the 600, we’ve now got one almost identical to the 650.

It’s much thicker at the base and a lot easier to pull out of each ear-cup. The cable itself is also nice and thick. DUMMY THICC.

What I also love about the 6XX is that the cable is now a lot shorter. I’ve lost count of how many times my chair has run over the 600’s cable, but fortunately, it’s held up remarkably well over these last few years. It just tends to get in the way more often than not.

Termination

The cable also terminates in a 3.5mm jack and comes with a 1/4″ adapter like the HD 600. The difference is that the 600’s adapter kind of matches the headphone and I’ve always really liked how sleek it looks.

The 6XX’s adapter is gold, but both are of the snap-on variety which cuts down on the time it takes to get set up and listen to music.

Headband Padding

Third, the headband padding is identical to the HD 650’s padding. It’s that one uniform pad with a sort of crater in the middle.

On the original HD 600, there were 4 small pads. I do think the 600’s are a bit more comfortable over the long haul though. More on that in a jiffy!

Cabling

Lastly, the 6XX does not have that convenient Red color at the base of the wire, indicating which side is which.

We instead have to turn the headphone and take a gander at the ever so tiny “R” and “L” indicators right below the lettering and above the headphone’s respective grille.

This is a bit more of a hassle but as long as you keep the headphone lying in the same position, it shouldn’t be much of a problem.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Same velour padding.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Subtle differences.

Now that that’s out of the way, let’s get into comfort!

Comfort

Comfort here is mostly the same. I did notice the HD 6XX tends to dig a little into the top of my head after a while, but this comes after quite an extended listening period.

Simply put, both of these headphones are some of the most comfortable you’ll ever wear, but I do think the 4 padded HD 600 takes the cake, slightly edging the 6XX.

What’s interesting though is that the clamping force on the 6XX is a bit lighter than that of the 600, even after a break-in period. I still find that the 600 clamps a bit harder, but I tend to enjoy it more.

It makes me feel safe and snug like a bug in a rug. They sort of make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. By contrast, the 6XX is still extremely comfortable but just feels a bit different on your head. It’s hard to explain.

I suppose it sort of has this feathery lightness about it and feels a bit less claustrophobic. Your preference will entirely depend on your own set of parameters for how a headphone should feel situated on your dome.

One thing of note: My left pad looks like it has been worn in a bit more than Shawn’s left, which may have some sort of effect on the sound. This is understandable as I’ve had the 600 longer than he’s had his 6XX, but it’s important to mention regardless.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Let’s get into that there sound, shall we?!

Sound & Imaging

  • Source: Tidal, FLAC, Masters. Spotify Premium.
  • Amp(s): FiiO K3, JDS Labs Atom, Audioquest DragonFly Red

That hallmark Sennheiser sound is still there in spades!

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

There’s a reason the HD 600 has remained relevant since 1997. It’s vintage audiophile sound.

You’ve got an almost completely neutral signature with loads of detail, pinpoint accuracy, and a relaxed but still detailed treble that pretty much never gets out of line. Add to that some amazing bass texture and a fluid mid-range with plenty of presence, and you’ve got essentially all you’ll ever need in this hobby. What’s not to love?

The Law of Diminishing Returns runs rampant with audio gear especially, and it only gets worse with each passing day (especially with regard to Amps & DACs). At this point, it’s just getting beyond ridiculous.

Before I go off on a rant, let me take a deep breath.

Okay, I’m good.

The first thing you’ll notice about the updated HD6XX is that it just sounds a little more airy and feathery by contrast.

It isn’t a huge difference, but it is noticeable. It’s got this natural grace about it that’s truly wonderful to behold. It sounds effortless as if it’s never trying too hard.

As for seeming effortless, the HD 6XXs never sound like they are working hard to reproduce music, whether connected to a laptop, a smartphone, or whatever. Some headphones allow you to more easily experience and enjoy your music without distractions from the things on your ears. The HD 6XXs are these kinds of headphones.Bill Henderson

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

One back and forth listen reveals the mids on the 600 to be more forward and less relaxing.

In listening to the 6XX for about a week straight, then switching to the 600 indicated an easily identifiable difference between the 2. John Coltrane’s Tenor Saxophone in particular on Miles Davis’ Blue in Green sounds more aggressive with the 6XX.

Another note of contention is air and texture. The 6XX seems to excel better at both. I got a sense that the 600 is a bit clammier and more congested by contrast, and even though it’s technically crisper sounding, it’s a little too in your face.

The 6XX seems to open things up to a greater degree while coming across as more relaxed and mellowed out.

Overall Imaging and Soundstage has gotten a slight upgrade with the 6XX, but don’t expect miracles. It mostly sounds about the same as far as width and depth go. What is Soundstage?

The HD 600 has long since had a pretty narrow image. All the pinpoint accuracy is there – you can pick out individual instruments, sounds, and other subtle nuances, but the picture of said elements is fairly small and does feel a bit boxed in.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Is the HD 600 still your cup ‘o tea?

The 6XX basically continues this trend, but because it’s got a bit more air it gives off the illusion that Soundstage is a tad better (at least in my opinion). It might be a bit wider. It’s hard to say because the overall image on both is very similar.

Even with that said, you’ll still experience some nice out of your head moments with both of these headphones.

I just feel like the HD 600’s mid-range around 1-4k has always just been slightly too in your face. It can really get fatiguing after a while as if the vocalist is shouting at you or raising his/her voice.

Joan’s “Take Me On (Chilled)” is a perfect example of a track that just sounds too aggressive with the 600’s. The vocals stand out, but they do so in a way that’s invasive.

Listening to the same track with the HD6XX is just a better, lighter, and more enjoyable experience overall. The vocals sit perfectly in the mix, and the headphones overall exude so much class that I’m having a hard time justifying holding onto my HD 600.

Call it a form of Cognitive Dissonance.

Despite that, you can always EQ that area down, but out of the box, the 6XX is just more professional sounding. More refined.

It’s like a woman who has matured with age. In her younger years perhaps she was a bit rough around the edges. As she’s gotten older, her aura has changed a bit. She’s not brash and reckless in her appearance, or even in her emotions. She doesn’t fly off the handle so easily.

The HD6XX resembles a woman who’s sure of herself and doesn’t have to put on a front any longer. The HD600 resembles a young lady who’s still got some growing up to do.

However, could all these perceived differences in the mid-range be attributed to the one pad on the 600 being slightly more depressed than the other? Perhaps, but my money is on no.

I’ve had the headphone for almost 3 years and that area has always bothered me. Add to that, a few millimeters isn’t going to completely change the sound signature. Some may disagree and that’s fine.

You’re wrong. Lol. Just kidding. Maybe I’m wrong. Whatever. Here’s another picture.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Confidence exuded.

Quick HD 650 Comparison

I have also had extensive time with the HD 650 although I don’t own it. I would say the sound is similar, but I find the 650 to be a warmer affair while the 6XX sounds a little crisper.

The 6XX, if you weren’t aware, is actually a rebrand of the original 650, which makes sense. Both have 103dB Sensitivity, both have very similar cabling (The 6XX’s cable is shorter, however), and both have that uniform crater pad on the headband.

With that said, the 6XX does not sound identical to the HD650 even despite a lot of Reddit parroters claiming it does. The article linked will go into exactly why, from a graphical standpoint, the 6XX is not the same as the 650.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

HD 6XX’s headband.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. 650

HD 650’s headband.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

The 650’s original adapter.

The other difference between the HD 6XX vs. 650 is that the 650’s cable terminated in a 1/4″ jack and came with a somewhat bulky/cumbersome cable. The 6XX’s cable is really a dream of sorts. It’s the perfect length, girth, and has a durable feel without resembling and/or feeling like an Anaconda.

The 6XX on the whole just makes more sense for a beginning audiophile because it’s stripped down and simplified. With that…

How about some photos?

Photo…

Photo Gallery

Click to see them in action!

Shoot 1

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Shoot 2

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Shoot 3

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XXSennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

Video…

Video Comparison/Shootout

Don’t forget to leave me some love on the channel!! Any support is much appreciated 🙂

Video…

Let’s talk a bit about amplification and genre pairing!

Amplification & Genre Pairing

I’ve been using the HD6XX with a FiiO K3 paired up to a JDS Labs ATOM.  In this case, the K3 functions as just the DAC, into the ATOM as an amp. A wonderful combination!

I’ve also used just the K3 as the Amp/DAC combo to a nice effect. The Audioquest DragonFly Red is also a fantastic option here as well.

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

There are so many amps that will likely work very well, so don’t get too hung up on what you go with.

Both the HD 600 and 650 are well known for being able to scale well with just about anything, so don’t stress out too much about it. Some audiophiles would have you in a tizzy about it – I’m not one of those people.

 

 

The original E10K that I have outputs 200mW @ 32 Ohm. The K3 out of the single-ended jack outputs:

  • 220 mW @ 16 Ohms.
  • 120 mW @ 32 Ohms.

Quite a bit less on paper, but in reality, you’re only turning up the dial a bit more than you would with an E10K.

What’s even better is that the HD600 can be driven just fine by the K3. I was surprised to find myself not using the gain much at all. Some tracks will need a slight boost, but even then it gets plenty loud enough and sounds fantastic.

Related: FiiO E10K USB DAC Review!

You won’t get quite as much headroom with the gain on as you would with an E10K, but I’d say around 5-6 on a clock with gain will do the trick with the K3 paired with a 6XX (It reaches about 7).

The HD 600 is a bit less efficient at 97dB than that of the HD6XX (103dB). Essentially, you won’t need quite as much power from an amp to reach an acceptable listening level with a 6XX. Read: How to Choose a Headphone Amp [Definitive Guide]

Related:

I am making a conscious effort to minimize how loud I listen to music nowadays, as it will go a long way in helping to preserve my hearing (yours too)!

Sometimes you just have to let loose, but I’d recommend against that most of the time. Now I sound like an old Grandpa. Lol.

Anyhow, there are many great choices to pair with these headphones when it comes down to them. The ones mentioned above should provide you a great start. If you have any questions or need help choosing, let me know and I can steer you in the right direction. 🙂

Here are some great resources to get you started:

Don’t forget to show me some love on the videos!!

Onto genre…

Genre Pairing

The original HD 600 and 650 have long since been known to work with nearly any genre, and the same holds true for the HD6XX.

Rock has always been the 600’s bread and butter, but the sheer amount of music that sounds great with these is staggering.

I tend to listen to mostly Indie Pop and Jazz nowadays, with some Classical, Hip-Hop, and Oldies thrown in for good measure. I still listen to Classic Rock, Progressive Rock, Math Rock, and Hard Rock/Metal from time to time, but sparingly.

For those, I prefer bands and artists like Chon, Plini, Animals as Leaders, Rage Against the Machine, and some Megadeth. That’s about the hardest I will go. It’s plenty good enough to gauge how certain headphones will sound with various genres.

Just know this: The 600, 650, and 6XX will sound fantastic with all of the above. Chon’s self-titled follow-up to 2017’s “Homie” in particular sounds wonderful with the 6XX.

It’s good, you like!

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

With that, let’s take a look at my notes…

Stu’s Notepad

Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX

 

What’s the final word?

Final Word

Well, I think you know what I’m about to say. I’d definitely take the HD6XX over the HD600. It improves on that mid-range but also doesn’t sound as sleepy as an HD 650. What I mean by that is the 650 can almost sound too relaxed at times. Almost too warm.

It seems as though the 6XX is basically a rebranded HD650 for cheaper, but sounds better. Sounds like a win-win situation to me. I find the HD6XX is crisper by contrast, and it’s more affordable than an HD 650.

I still love the HD600, but sadly it’s outclassed here and that’s the honest truth. The cable and connections are both better on the 6XX as well. I’m absolutely loving the length of the 6XX’s cable. It’s a perfect size and hasn’t once gotten in my way.

This headphone would make a fantastic gift for someone because it represents a true foray into better sound at a crazy good price.

Introducing anyone to this product who doesn’t have a clue (no offense to non-audiophiles) to is likely to go ape sh**. What is an Audiophile? Seriously, I let a friend borrow the HD 600 and an iFi xCAN and she told me she literally didn’t want to leave her room. Like ever. Haha.

Even with that said, there are times when I do prefer an HD600 still. It’s a tough call. When I’m craving that slightly crisper sound, the 600 delivers mightily. It’s just that it can get fatiguing after a much shorter period of time and I’m inclined to want to take it off and put the 6XX back on my melon.

If you’re on the prowl for something that will handle your mixing, mastering, and reference duties, I think the HD600 still slightly wins out. You’re basically sacrificing EARitation (Okay I’m sorry) for a crisper and more detailed sound. If that sounds like you:

 

 

 

If you’re looking to kick back and relax with your music, the 6XX is the solution. I can listen to it for a LONG time without wanting or even needing a break. It just the perfect headphone to mellow out with for like, ever. Haha. Zero fatigue, better mid-range, better and more practical cabling, and a bit more efficiency.

 

 

Well, that’s about it for today my friend! I hope you’ve enjoyed this Sennheiser HD 600 vs. HD 6XX Review & Comparison.

Questions? Comments? Requests? Did I miss the mark on something? Please let me know down below or Contact me!!

Are you convinced the 6XX is the better purchase? I would love to hear from you. Until next time…

All the best and God bless,

 

 

-Stu

[Xtr@Ba$eHitZ]

Can’t decide which headphones to purchase? Interested in a complete buyers guide outlining over 40 of the best options on the market? Click on over to the best audiophile headphones to learn more!!

Be sure to also check out my Reviews and Resources page for more helpful and informative articles!

Don't forget to share if you found it helpful!

You may also like

14 comments

Gene August 18, 2019 - 3:53 am

Howdy Stu…! Thank you for this awesome review. I my self am in love with HD6XX since the day i bought it last year. It was a big leap for me because its price was unbelievable for someone like me in a place like where i live.

I believe it is the only hd6xx in a fifty kilometer radius from my home. Lol, and you helped me to buy an amplifier last year. However I ended up buying the Fx audio dac-x6 but I wasn’t happy with it, even though it was a great cheap device it wasn’t doing what i wanted to hear so i scraped the last bit of spare money i could get and bought a “little dot MK2” and upgraded the tubes to “mullards” and “russian power tubes”. Then there was bliss, I felt like i have reached the pinnacle of sound which i was looking for. Later i had to swear an oath to myself, “never to spend on audiogear again for many years”, lol.

My current configuration is

Fx audio dac-x6 (just dac section) + little dot mk2 + HD6XX.

It sounds amazing!

All the best Stu, keep those good honest reviews coming. Many blessings to you.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black August 18, 2019 - 1:35 pm

Hey Gene, great to hear from you again!!

That’s awesome man and so glad to hear you’re enjoying the Little Dot. I know how that can be, you make that first foray into the hobby and all of a sudden you’re throwing money at peeps left and right. Lol.

I’m definitely of the mindset that you don’t have to go down that rabbit hole! Haha. I enjoy sound as much as the next guy, but the differences in high end gear are marginal at best. I think it has more to do with source file first (the quality of the mix itself), then the quality of the headphones second, and third is the Amp/DAC.

What specifically didn’t you like about the DAC-X6? I’ve heard some good things about it but have not tried one myself. I would really love to get a dedicated Tube set up sometime down the road. Had my eye on a few: The Bravo Audio Ocean to get my feet wet, then maybe a Little Dot MK III, Darkvoice 336, or the DIY Bottlehead Crack.

Anyway, thank you so much for the kind words!

Talk soon,

-Stu

Reply
Shawn Quint September 13, 2019 - 12:01 am

Hey Stu. Great review! I’m glad you enjoyed the cans! It was very interesting to hear the differences between the HD6XX and HD650 since I was under the impression that they were more similar. It’s nice to see that Massdrop’s version came out on top, especially since it’s the cheapest of the bunch. I’m glad they had such an impact on you. This website is such a great resource for someone new to high quality personal audio. Thank you for your work and I’ll be looking forward to more reviews.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black September 13, 2019 - 1:38 am

Thanks so much for lending them to me Shawn! It was a great pleasure listening with these for the last month. I really didn’t want to send them back! Hahaha. I think they are similar to the 650 but I found them a tad crisper by contrast. I think they strike the perfect balance between the too forward HD 600 (mid-range) and laid back 650. It’s just a perfect headphone all around for me. Massdrop did a fantastic job with them.

I look forward to our future dialogues as well, and really happy to have you on-board.

Blessings,
-Stu

Reply
Colin Johns May 24, 2020 - 12:38 am

Hi there
I really appreciate you taking the time to do these reviews I currently have a pair of HD555 which I think are great I have just ordered a Cyrus soundkey dac/amp to try out however my question please is would I notice a improvement going to HD 6xx as I am enjoying kicking back listening to Elvis and having a scotch more these days.
Thanks very much . Colin

Reply
Stuart Charles Black May 24, 2020 - 5:32 pm

Hey man thank you so much! Absolutely it would be a marked improvement from your 555. How’s the Soundstage on that? Is it anything like a 598 or 599? If so, you will lose a bit of that on the 6XX. I don’t know how important that is to you but the 6XX is pretty much a perfect headphone. Let me know and we can go from there 🙂

Reply
Manuel July 27, 2020 - 7:58 pm

Hi, after seeing the good reviews written here and your videos on youtube I am very excited to buy the HD6xx in Drop . But the price increase of HD6xx to 220 $ and the disappearance of the store in Europe, the final price of these headphones adding shipping, taxes and customs transaction costs stays around 312 € (calculating more or less what it has cost other people before).
So my question is, do you think it still pays to buy the HD6xx from my country at that price, or is it better to buy the HD650 that are available for 333 €?

Thank you very much, Manuel.

PS: Another option is to buy a K712 for 233 €, although I know that this is a headphone not so comparable to the first two.

(Sorry for my English, I used DeepL 🙂 )

Reply
Stuart Charles Black July 27, 2020 - 8:27 pm

Hey man! If the total cost is still less than the 650, I’d go with the 6XX. A lot of people will tell you that the 650 and 6XX are essentially the same sound, but I kind of disagree a little. I didn’t find the 6XX to be quite as warm as the 650, and I do prefer it’s sound signature. It strikes a nice balance between the HD 600 and 650.

The 712 is fantastic, but it’s just a different type of sound really. It excels better with lighter genres like Classical, Jazz, Acoustic, etc. and also fares better for Gaming and Film.

Let me know about Drop! If you use my drop link for the 6XX, or end up deciding on the 650 to amazon, I do get a small kick back which helps the site moving forward. Thank you so much in advance and keep me posted!

Reply
René Ouimet September 15, 2021 - 4:47 am

Hello, I much enjoy your reviews : always sensible and informative. I am new to the world of headphones but have a speakers-based system. After much listening and research, I finally bought the HD6XX. Finding a top-flight amplifier was not easy but in the end, I got the SPL Phonitor se : the result is fantastic! It is always a subjective decision but your reviews were most helpful. Digital source is a Roksan K3 CD player (sometimes used as a CD transport with an Aqua Acoustic Dac). Music is an endless wonder, is it not? Best regards.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black September 19, 2021 - 8:21 pm

Thank you René!! So glad you’re enjoying. 6XX is my top choice under $500! 🙂

Reply
René Ouimet September 19, 2021 - 1:10 am

Hello, I am new to the world of headphones. I much enjoy your reviews : always sensible and informative. After much reading and listening, I chose the HD6XX. With a top-flight amplifier such as the SPL Phonitor se, they sing beautifully. They are very musical and are worth more than the price asked. In truth, they are a ridiculous bargain. I was also impressed with the Grado gs 1000s but decided to go with the Sennheiser. My sister bought the Focal Clear and they are fantastic but I didn’t want to spend that much. I am curious about the planar magnetic designs but basically, I am happy with the HD6XX. Digital source is a Roksan K3 cd player, used sometimes as a transport with an Aqua Acoustic dac (La Voce) : the result is most impressive. I have no interest in streaming and computer audio for now. It is always a subjective decision, but your articles were most helpful. (to see clearly in the audio jungle is a real challenge!) Best regards.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black September 19, 2021 - 8:32 pm

Hey René!! The 6XX is indeed pretty awesome. I will say that the difference between a planar and dynamic is apparent, albeit not monumental or anything. Still, you can tell it’s just a tad more realistic with timbre and decay being especially noteworthy. Check out the DEVA review I just did as your comment is perfect timing lol. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vTn9nluJTaY

Reply
René Ouimet September 19, 2021 - 9:42 pm

Hello again, I wrote twice because I was’nt sure if you received the first one. Thanks for your response. 2 questions: is it worth it to get a ”better” quality cable for the hd6XX? (single-ended in my case) A cable specialist, Audiophile Ninja, (in the USA) has caught my attention (there are others). And what is the best value in the HifiMan line-up? The Ananda model looks interesting. Comparable (or better) than the Grado gs 1000e? Your site is a gold mine of informations! Regards.

Reply
Stuart Charles Black September 28, 2021 - 1:15 pm

Hey René! I wouldn’t bother with another cable unless it’s balanced. Best value in the HIFIMAN lineup is definitely the DEVA. Nice timing as I just did this video. Check it out and let me know what you think 🙂 Also, the Ananda would be a nice step up from the DEVA as it does perform a bit better overall in terms of its sound. It’s been a while since I’ve heard a GS1000e, and though it was my favorite out of the lineup, I probably wouldn’t personally purchase one as I think it’s a bit overpriced. If you’re going to go with something closer to Hi-Fi, the Ananda is my choice.

Reply

Leave a Reply to Stuart Charles Black Cancel Reply