The Sennheiser HD 650 deliver an excellent and open sound that's great for critical listening. They're comfortable and decently built. Sadly, they're only average as everyday, casual headphones. The open-back design lets noise seep into your audio and leaks a lot. They will be distracting to the people around you, even at moderate volumes.
- Great audio reproduction.
- Above-average soundstage.
- Comfortable and stable design.
- Leaks a lot.
- Poor noise isolation.
The HD 650 are decently designed headphones with large comfortable earcups. They're less tight than the HD 600, which reduces the clamping sensation you feel during long listening sessions. Sadly, this also makes them slightly less stable on your head. They offer no audio control options, and they're also a bit too bulky and may require a bag to carry them around.
The HD 650 have the same design as the HD 600 with a few minor differences. They have a two-tone, dark gray and black color scheme with a glossy coating. The large open ear cups have a suede-like finish on the padding that gives these headphones a premium appeal. They do not look as eye-catching as the HD 600 because of their slightly bland color scheme, but the style will work for some.
The HD 650 are slightly more comfortable than the HD 600. Like the previous model these headphones have large ear cups that fully encompass most ears. They are also covered in a suede-like fabric that feels good on the skin and adds to their overall comfort level. The headband design is better than the HD 600, it's not as tight, and it's better padded.
The HD 650 are a little less stable than the HD 600 because they have less tension in the headband. They stay in place during casual listening sessions and are stable enough for some low-intensity, physical activity. However, they are not designed for sports, and the slightly looser headband may cause them to fall off your head if used while running. The detachable cable will also pull the headphones of your head before it disconnects from the ear cups, which is slightly disappointing.
These headphones are not designed to be very portable. They're large and bulky and do not fold into a smaller format for transport or easy storage. They also don't offer a dedicated case or pouch to carry the headphones in, which is slightly disappointing. Although the box they come in could be a substitute for a case, it's too big and impractical for regular use.
The HD 650 deliver an excellent, open audio reproduction with minimal harmonic distortion. Their sound quality is similar to the HD 600 with better bass and treble. Instruments and vocals sound just as great if a little more emphasized, and the high frequencies are a bit less sharp. The bass packs a decent punch, but might still be a little lacking for some listeners, and the soundstage is slightly less spacious than the HD 600.
Good Bass Range performance. The overall Bass response is slightly more emphasized than the HD 600. High-bass is elevated by about 3dB, which adds a bit of warmth to the sound. However, low-bass, is still underemphasized by about 5dBs. This gives the headphones a warm and neutral bass response that lack a little low-end rumble.
Excellent Mid Range performance. The response is virtually flat throughout, albeit slightly emphasized by about 2dBs in Low-mid and Mid.
Great Treble Range performance. The response is balanced and consistent. Although the Treble Range is slightly better than that of the HD 600, high-treble is sill slightly hyped.
Very good soundstage. The large and deep drivers of these headphones create a decent HRTF response, which tends to pull the soundstage out from the inside the listener's head, and bring it to the front. However, even though they do not perform as well the HD 800 S and a little less open than the HD 600, they provide a very spacious sound with a good soundstage.
Very good imaging. The phase response of these headphones is great, which translates into optimum depth and transparency. However, the drivers of this test unit were a little less matched compared to the reviewed HD 600 unit. This slightly affects imaging but not enough to be noticeable, for most listeners.
Very good performance. The overall amount of harmonic distortion is lower than the HD 600's distortion and is barely noticeable, even at higher volumes. However, the amount of harmonic distortion in the Bass Range is slightly elevated, and has a more pronounced spike at 30Hz.
The open-back design of the HD 650 encourages leakage to improve sound quality. However, this means they leak a lot and will disturb the people around you at moderate volumes, even on a bus. They also won't block any ambient noise from seeping into your audio and won't fare well in loud environments or on a noisy commute.
Poor isolation. These headphones don't isolate any sound below 2KHz. Above 2KHz, they perform poorly, failing to deliver more than 10dB of overall attenuation in the Treble Range.
Poor leakage. These open headphones leak a lot of sound throughout a broad range of frequencies. The leakage starts to become noticeable around 300Hz and remains so up to 20KHz.
No active features.
No compatible app.
In the box
- Sennheiser HD 650 Headphones
- 1/8" to 1/4" Adapter
- Audio cable
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Questions & Answers
We are planning on testing the impedance and drivability of the headphones hopefully sometime in the coming year. However, our immediate priority is to improve our current test bench so our scores correspond better to the user's subjective experience.
Once we have our test bench solidified we will explain our testing procedure and philosophy fully in a couple of articles and videos. But just to give you some information for now; we are using an RME UFX as our audio interface/preamp, and a Schiit Ragnarok as our headphones amp. Our new test bench calculates the final results by averaging 30 measurements that were gathered using a variety of measurement devices in order to account for different head shapes/sizes and headphone positioning preferences.
Before asking a question, make sure you use the search function of our website. The majority of the answers are already here.