Help selecting headphones for practicing

fgeorge097

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Feb 3, 2016
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Hi all,

I was going to pick up a pair of Sennheiser HD 650 Headphones, seen here:

https://en-us.sennheiser.com/high-quality-headphones-around-ear-audio-surround-hd-650

For plugging into my guitar amp, and practicing without annoying the neighbors. I would also like to use the headphones to plug into my smartphone for music listening, and also to plug into my playstation controller for video games.

The primary use is guitar practicing, though.

My current amp is a 1 Watt Marshall DLS1CR, seen here:

https://marshall.com/marshall-amps/products/amps/dsl/dsl1c

I spoke with Sennheiser Customer Service, and they told me that the HD 650 Headphones had an Ohm rating of 300 Ohm, which is too high for a guitar amp (and also for general music listening from a smartphone, or video game console).

They instead suggested the Sennheiser HD 560s, seen here:

https://en-us.sennheiser.com/hd-560-s-audiophile-headphone-high-end-over-ear

Which has a 120 Ohm rating, and they said it was much better for my purposes.

I was wondering if any guitar enthusiasts could chime in here. I would prefer the HD 650, mostly because they seem nicer/more expensive and my wife has already said she would get them for me.

Do you think these HD 650 headphones, with the 300 Ohm rating would be too quiet, or would they work well? Or, would I be better suited for the 120 Ohm rating on the HD 560s headphones? I would honestly prefer not to have to get a headphone amplifier.

Thanks experts!
 
Last edited:

Fro

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I have no complaints with my Sennheiser HD 650‘s. I think they’re also 120 ohm.
 

Black Plaid

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The linked amp doesn't have a headphone jack, how do you plan on using headphones with it?

I have a set of HD 600s and have never noticed a volume problem. You shouldn't be listening to audio at ear deafening levels anyway.
 

SinSir

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The linked amp doesn't have a headphone jack, how do you plan on using headphones with it?

I have a set of HD 600s and have never noticed a volume problem. You shouldn't be listening to audio at ear deafening levels anyway.

It has an emulated out on the back for headphones
 

fgeorge097

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I have no complaints with my Sennheiser HD 650‘s. I think they’re also 120 ohm.

Sennheiser HD 650 are 300 Ohm. The tech support team at sennheiser said this was too high for guitar amps/smartphones/video games and I should look for something with a lower Ohm
 

goat-n-gitter

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I have the HD6XX (Massdrop version of the 650's), they sound great but are a bit tough to drive. You could try the HD58x (HD580). They are 150 ohms. My co-worker has a pair he keeps at work, they sound pretty awesome as well. Drop.com sells them for $170
I also have a pair of AKG K702's, and I personally prefer them over the HD6XX's, but lots of folks like the Sennheisers. The AKG's are rated at 62 ohms, so easier to drive. Right now they are selling for $288, but I bought mine in 2018 for $175, so clearly they must go on sale from time to time.
Also check out the Koss Porta Pro. They are very inexpensive at around $40, but are very full and punchy. As far as impact and frequency response, they hold their own with almost anything, they just don't have the imaging or soundstage of higher dollar cans, but I'd expect they'd shine on a practice guitar amp. They are what I use at work.

Headphones can be as deep a rabbit hole as guitars.
 

goat-n-gitter

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Also, if you like to listen to music on your phone, next time you need a new one check out the higher end LG phones (V and G series) They have audiophile quality digital converters and a powerful headphone amp that can drive high-impedance headphones. They will also play all the hi-res audio file formats with no problem (.flac, .dsd, etc.). They drive my Sennheisers, AKG's, HiFiMan's etc. just fine. Makes for an awesome audiophile Walkman!
 

Fro

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Sennheiser HD 650 are 300 Ohm. The tech support team at sennheiser said this was too high for guitar amps/smartphones/video games and I should look for something with a lower Ohm

I meant to say Sennheiser 600’s. I just looked and they’re also 300-ohm.
 

Wakester

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I use Audio-Technica ATH-M40x phones. They are comfortable, and seal out the world when i want to focus. They work very well with my computer too, but never tried them with a phone. The tip is convertible between 1/4" and 1/8" and comes with 2 cables.
 

SinSir

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That is a "line out" which is line level, probably not going to drive any pair of headphones well. You would need to go from that into a headphone amplifier.

Not sure how good it'll be or if he'll need an amplifier but per the manual

17. EMULATED OUT Frequency compensated line level output for headphones or for connection to a mixer. The DSL is equipped with a high quality emulated output using Softube-designed studio cabinet REAR PANEL FUNCTIONS DSL1CR REAR PANEL emulation. This ensures that your headphone and output signal from this socket provide the best possible tone for practice or recording.
 
Last edited:

fgeorge097

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Feb 3, 2016
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I have the HD6XX (Massdrop version of the 650's), they sound great but are a bit tough to drive. You could try the HD58x (HD580). They are 150 ohms. My co-worker has a pair he keeps at work, they sound pretty awesome as well. Drop.com sells them for $170
I also have a pair of AKG K702's, and I personally prefer them over the HD6XX's, but lots of folks like the Sennheisers. The AKG's are rated at 62 ohms, so easier to drive. Right now they are selling for $288, but I bought mine in 2018 for $175, so clearly they must go on sale from time to time.
Also check out the Koss Porta Pro. They are very inexpensive at around $40, but are very full and punchy. As far as impact and frequency response, they hold their own with almost anything, they just don't have the imaging or soundstage of higher dollar cans, but I'd expect they'd shine on a practice guitar amp. They are what I use at work.

Headphones can be as deep a rabbit hole as guitars.

That's what I was looking at - the Sennheiser 6XX Massdrop. At $210 with the coupon, they seem like an incredible value, but it seems that an amp is mandatory.

I was also looking at those AKG 702s, and have seen several other people on various message boards speak favorable of them. Why do you prefer them to the 6xx? At the lower 62 ohm impedence, they shouldn't need any amplification from any source, right?
 
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