Are HD600 a good buy in 2020?

Is the HD600 a good buy in 2020?

I currently own a DT1990 and wanted to buy a secondary headphone for relaxing. I plan on using them with my little bear P7 Tube Amp

I know some people will recommend the Nighthawks instead, but they are not available where i live and I don’t want to pay import fees… At least not yet, I plan on expanding my collection with what I have available here first.

The Hifiman Sundara is also available here, but I think it may be too similar to my 1990, and the HD600 might be more relaxing

And i can’t buy massdrop products like the 6xx or the 58x

Anyways, aside buying advice I wanted to know your thoughts about the HD600 in 2020, if today’s market have room for it.

Hmm, can you perhaps get the 650? That would be more chill than the 600. Imo if you have a tube amp, I think the 600/650 is definitely still worthwhile imo, it’s still a great headphone


Yes, I can get a 650. But I heard the 600 are better on a tube. Is that correct?

Also, I’m thinking it would be nice to have a diffuse field tuned headphone Wich the HD600 are. And also a Harman tuned headphone (I’m planning on buying a K371 as my main closed back for now)

It depends on what you want. I personally prefer the 600 on a tube, but the 650 is more laid back for what you are looking for, but the 600 is close enough to that goal I guess

If that’s what you are looking for then the 600 might make more sense than the 650 (and more expensive diffuse tuned headphones)


650 on a tube sounds like exactly what you’re looking for :ok_hand:

Itll still be a great purchase in 2030

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If they’re “still” a good buy in 2020, does that mean they’re starting to get outclassed by other things in their price range? Kinda interested in what could be compared to 600’s and 650’s in the $400~ price range.

I’d say probably a Sundara or used Elex would be considered upgrades in that price category.

The 600 vs 650 debate has been going on since forever. Team 650 says the 600s are a bit too “mid-forward”. Team 600 says the 650s are “veiled”. For example, Zeos is on team 600. He actually custom-painted his 600s, because for him it had the ultimate tuning. But DMS is on team 650 and felt just as passionately about them. Yet the main difference between the two comes down to the relative loudness of the upper mids peak that all headphones have to have.

The 600s have a bit more loudness there than the 650s. The advantage for the 600s is a more natural sound for normal speech, singing and acoustic instruments. But the 650’s reduced upper mids loudness allows for loud listening — guys just wanna have fun — especially of the screeching electric guitars of heavy metal and the piercing synth sounds of some the edgier genres.

For comparison, your DT 1990’s peak is on the same level as the 650 (but it has a big boost higher up in the treble that drives some people crazy). Also, the K371s you mention have the new Harman peak at the HD 650 level as well. But the original Harman peak was at the HD 600 level. (And a typical Audeze, like the LCD-2, brings it down even further.)


I think something like a sundara for example is more technically capable, but there are some aspects of the 600 and 650 that most headphones just can’t replicate (timbre, sound sig, intimacy), but it’s just preference

And of course buying used can yield better deals imo

All that being said, with the 6xx being 200 USD from massdrop, for the performance it offers I think it’s actually a pretty good value

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How is the HD600/650 compared to the 6xx? A lot of people say they are almost the same, if not the exact same.

The 6xx is pretty much just a 650 (yes there are slightly differences but it doesn’t really matter), but the 6xx isn’t like the 600

Well. I think I will get the 600 then just because of the “legendary” aspect of it. Haha.

And in the end, I plan on buying Nighthawks as my ultimate relax cans in the future.

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I will just say that my 600s sit right next to my tube amp, and get used fairy often lol


Nice… definitely worth having in the stable :+1:


Yeah, I’m planning my collection from the begining to buy unique and remarkable headphones and never sell any of them. So… All of them have to have something special.

That’s because I like collections and also, I’m Brazil is REALLY hard to sell headphones, specially high end ones.

Here, when you say you have a 2500 reais headphone (Aprox 600 dollars) they think you are crazy. So, no one buys this stuff, specially used.

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Thanks for the detailed answer.
Just out of curiosity, what is your preference? 600 or 650?

With or without a tube?

You’re very welcome. (Actually, I cut my reply down to half the original length because I tend to assume other people want to understand the exact reason for everything like I do, lol.)

I’m in exactly the same boat as you are: I own the DT 1990s and I’ve been considering buying an HD 600 for ages. I use EQ on my 1990s to match other headphone’s frequency responses to help decide. I used to lean toward the 600, but frankly I’m finding my hearing adapts to either one within a minute or two.

Just be aware that Sennheiser has recently modified the appearance of the HD 600 when they moved production from Ireland to Romania. The original glossy dark blue marble pattern is now matte black. Just to make things harder for those of us in smaller market countries, I’m sure, grin.

Haven’t got to that point yet. Right now I’m very frustrated by all these options and just want to crawl under a rock to make all this confusion go away, grin.

I purchased my hd 600’s last month and am very glad i did. 600’s are special. 650’s less so. but to be honest i have not heard the 650’s or the 6xx. But from a hell of a lot of reading and research, i went with the 600’s for tuning reasons and for the magical vocals they produce. They well live up to the reputation. Its like the singer is singing to you right next to you. They are not wide, and despite the intimate and narrow setting, you still get pretty decent instrument separation.

Its really easy with the 600’s to listen to a live recording in a small gig and feel like you are actually there. Live arena shows give you the feel of front row. Take the live part with a grain of salt tho. I find most live recordings are terribly recorded so sound like crap on anything. But stuff like mtv’s unplugged series makes you feel like you are right there in the action.

I think the 600’s will love your p7 as well. I agree with the masses that tubes are by far better sounding then solid state with the 600’s. They sound pretty good on my sprout100, but my cheap chinese hybrid tube amp + tube preamp blows it away with the 600’s.

One thing to note, the bass is present and clean, but lackluster. If you listen to a lot of bass heavy music, the 600’s may leave you wanting without eq. I personally love bass so i eq a slight bump on the low end just to give it slightly more meat. The driver is perfectly capable of strong bass, just is not tuned out of the box for it.

If you do find the bass a little lackluster, you could pick up a cheap chinese tube pre-amp with bass/treble control. They are all over amazon and ali express for 30-40$ us.

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This is preference… on solid state I preferred the 650 and bought the 650 because it had a little more bass and the mids or upper mids (somewhere in there) was a little more laid back and made for a more relaxed listen imo

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I should say the 650’s are less special in the sense that other headphones are tuned and sound similar. They are still a great pair of headphones and a great value at 350-400$ they go for these days. And you can get used even cheaper. I was broke and missed out on an ebay listing of hd58x + usb modmic for 125$ free shipping for instance. 600’s 650’s and both the massdrop senn’s are very popular and so get sold used a ton.

edit: on a side note, I do not know the weight of the 650’s, but the 600’s weigh nothing. They are sooooooo light weight