HiFiMan vs Sennheiser

Massdrops, HE350 or Sennheiser 6xx for good analytical sound. Looking to step up from my HD25’s and my Grado SR60’s.

Don’t forget about the HE-400i/HE4xx. I used to have an HE-400i and it had a very special sound. Ultimately its timbre wasn’t quite my thing, but that was before I got EQ religion and I suspect I could have fixed that by tinkering with the frequency response.

With all the Hifiman products, build/reliability are something to watch out for - caveat emptor!

EDIT - Here’s a comparison I wrote that includes the HE-400i and HD 600, in case that’s of use.


I loved the 4xx while I had it! So second that, or the new 58x! Both great prices for really good products.

Helpful in that it’s a well written review, not so much because now I have more to consider!

@jflores476 Either would be an improvement over what you have. I own the HE 400i and HD 650 (and owned the HD 600 and 580). I think you would be happy any one of them as an upgrade. Nothing beats doing a comparative listen though, if you can.

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I figured these are improvements. I don’t have anywhere to try out better headphones other than maybe Best Buy.

I’ve read enough good reviews to think the Massdrop 6xx might be the ones to go for next up the food chain. I think they’re coming back up later this month. If I do get them (or one of the other 6 series), I’ll do an unboxing and compare article.

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FWIW the HE4XX is available on Massdrop right now - https://www.massdrop.com/buy/massdrop-x-hifiman-he4xx-planar-magnetic-headphones

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I bought the HE4xx because I wanted a Planar. Loved the clean uncoloured sound. Well, maybe just a bit warm, but lots of detail and wide stage. Began listening to it all the time.
Bought the Senn 6xx because of its reputation and because I am hoping this will be my last purchase for a lot time.
I did say hoping :slight_smile: .
Anyway, I didn’t like it at all. Compared to the HE 4xx, it sounds thick and boxy. Detail is great, but there’s that odd coloration I found so annoying. Maybe it’s just my sound signature preference. Maybe it needs burning in. Also the Massdrop edition has very uncomfortable pads.
I see you’re probably looking for a neutral sounding headphone. You couldn’t do better than the 4xx. You’ll never take them off!


I bought another set…damn it…

Blinq had the Massdrop 6xx on sale 2 months ago for $250. I got one, I think it was open box but seemed just like new. Maybe that will come back sometime. Blinq is currently selling the HD650 for a good price.


I just saw that Massdrop itself has a current drop for the 6xx, for $200. https://www.massdrop.com/buy/massdrop-sennheiser-hd6xx

I put my NAD VISO HP 50’s up for sale on Amazon. If I get a taker, I’ll be looking at the HD6xx and the Beyerdynamics HD990.

If the choice is HE350 and HD6XX, the answer is easy. HE350 is awful junk and the HD6XX is a damned good headphone, probably the best bargain in the industry. I bought them both and the HE350 is the only headphone I hated so much I sold it.

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Is there such a huge difference between the 350’s and the 400’s?

Totally different tech. 350 is dynamic driver, 400 is planar magnetic.

Ahhh. Didn’t realize. I’ve read lots of good reviews on the 400.

I’m a little tired of Sennheiser. I don’t have any high end models but I have the PX100, PX200, and HD25 sets. They all have a similar signature that seems too “veiled” if that’s the right term. My Grado SR60’s are better as are my NAD HP50’s, all in similar price ranges.

When I step up, I want clarity and precision. I’m a jazz fan and I like to hear all the instruments individually.

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I currently own a HE400i and HD650; and I also like to listen to jazz. I wouldn’t want you to expect that one will perform better than the other in this genre and then be disappointed. Best to listen to both with some of your preferred reference recordings. Keep us posted.

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I do like the HD 650 with the kiss mod. mcth and ember amp it well but the crack with my latest upgrades is heavenly. I have the HE4xx and enjoy them quite a bit along with the HD 598x? from Massdrop. Both are very good and versatile with different amps. Others interest me but I will not get anymore for a while, uh, I am in the kickstarter for the Verum1. Couldn’t resist the '60’s Jetsonesque styling and the excellent reviews.

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I’m also on the Verum1 Kickstarter, looking forward to them… mostly because of how unique they are.

I own a set of HE-400S and they are smoother than the 400i. I had a chance to compare them and the 400S is the way to go if you are buying the HiFI Man HE-400 cans. The weakness of the 400S is in the bass. You can get a set of Focus or Focus A ear pads from HiFI Man and that helps on the low end. The addition of the Focus pads plus some equalization and the HE-400S is a beautiful listen.

The rest of the spectrum on the HE-400S is completely smooth and a joy to listen to. There is s slight hint in upper frequency grain if you listen very carefully but the HE-400S cans are much better than their asking price would indicate.

The HE-400S are light and easy to wear over long periods of time. It is very easy to enjoy their sound and a lot of people love these cans. The Inner Fidelity web site rated the HE-400S very high and prefered them over Sennheiser HD-600 or 650s due to their smooth and forward sound.

The HE-400S is also very easy to drive but I recommend that you use a good quality headphone amp for the best possible sound quality. Planar magnetic headphones can be power hungry but the HE-400S are pretty efficient. Here is the full review of the HE-400S as performed on Inner Fidelity: Inner FIdelity HE-400S review


PS. I don’t use my HE-400S any longer because I bought a set of Focal Clears. They are still a great set of headphones and for $300 you will have a really hard time finding anything better.