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Best Sennheiser headphones

When it comes to fidelity, Sennheiser knows what’s up.
By
January 13, 2023
Best all-around
Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless
By Sennheiser
8.5
Check price
Positives
Sound quality
ANC is good
Long battery life
Comfortable design
aptX, aptX HD, aptX Adaptive, AAC, SBC, or wired
Microphone quality
Negatives
Not the absolute best ANC
Does not fold down
The Bottom Line.
The Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless pulls off the feat of great sound, great noise cancelling, and great connectivity for a reasonable price.Read full review...
Best style
Sennheiser HD 450BT
By Sennheiser
A picture of the Sennheiser HD 450BT noise cancelling headphones in full view on a white table.
7.3
Check price
Positives
Sound quality
Bluetooth 5.0, aptX, aptX LL, AAC, or wired
Multipoint, fast autoconnect
Noise cancelling
Budget friendly
Negatives
Ear cups are smaller than most over-ear headphones
The Bottom Line.
The Sennheiser HD 450BT headphones have solid codec support and Bluetooth multipoint at an attractive price, with a little bit of ANC to dampen your environment at a cut price.Read full review...
Best open-back
Sennheiser HD 58X Jubilee
By Sennheiser
The Sennheiser HD 58X Jubilee against a white backdrop.
7.5
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Positives
Bass response
Comfortable, spacious earcups
Value
Negatives
Plastic build
Availability
The Bottom Line.
If you can get your hands on them, the HD 58X Jubilee x Massdrop (Drop) collab is definitely worth picking up just because of the sound-to-price ratio. Read full review...
Best comfort
Sennheiser HD 599
By Sennheiser
The Sennheiser HD 599 product shot shown in the ivory colorway.
7.5
Check price
Positives
Comfortable fit
Breathable velour ear pads
Open-back design creates immersive soundscape
Removable cables
Negatives
Plastic build
The Bottom Line.
As a set of straight forward over-ear headphones to listen to music or movies at home, the Sennheiser HD 599 is very comfortable and does the job.Read full review...
Best bang for your buck
Sennheiser HD 280 Pro
By Sennheiser
The Sennheiser HD 280 Pro studio headphones in black against a white background.
7.5
Check price
Positives
Reliable studio headphone
No sound leaks
32dB passive external noise attenuation
Comfortable with/without glasses
Price
Negatives
All-plastic build
Can feel hot during long sessions
The Bottom Line.
Whether you’re mixing audio for your latest podcast episode or your about-to-drop EP, the HD 280 Pro performs consistently well and has been used by enthusiasts and professionals.Read full review...

Sennheiser is one of a handful of audio monoliths and picking from its wide array of headsets can be an overwhelming process. Despite not having the sexiest of model names, Sennheiser headphones are reliable and consistently perform above their price bracket when compared. So, let’s dig in and figure out the best Sennheiser headphones for your needs.

Editor’s note: this post was updated on January, 13 2022, to include the Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless, Sennheiser HD 450BT, and Sennheiser HD 599 in our Best list. The Sennheiser HD 660S is given a highlight alongside the added Sennheiser SPORT True Wireless. To the Notable mentions the Sennheiser HD 569 and Sennheiser HD 559 were added, alongside updates to FAQ and links.

Why is the Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless the best Sennheiser headphones?

Sennheiser upped the ante with the MOMENTUM 4 Wireless, a premium set of active noise cancelling (ANC) headphones. These cans feel comfortable for extended listening sessions, and even for folks with glasses. Good luck draining the very impressive 56 hours and 21 minutes of battery life (with ANC on), but if you do, there’s always an optional wired connection. You even get an airplane adapter for flying.

Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless
Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless
8.5
A person uses the capacitive touch controls to control media playback.The Sennheiser momentum 4 wireless sits on a headphone standThe Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless sits on a headphone stand in background with a phone displaying the Sennheiser Smart Control app displayed.The cloth-wrapped band of the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless.Thick pads dress the ear cups and band of the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless.The Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless headphones lay on a wooden table with the USB-C charing port in focusA chart showing the attenuation performance of the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless, able to block out anywhere between 75 and 93% of outside noise depending on frequency.A chart showing the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless' frequency response closely matching the SoundGuys Consumer Curve, with only minor deviations.
Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless
Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless
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Through the combination of isolation and ANC, the MOMENTUM 4 Wireless reduces loudness of high pitched sounds by 75-95%. Low pitched sounds see about a 75% reduction in volume. Adding to this premium experience is the suite of high quality Bluetooth codecs: SBC, AAC, aptX, aptX HD, or aptX Adaptive.

As is the trend lately with premium headphones, the Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless uses touch controls. These work well, and you can adjust them to your taste in the app which has some niceties like an equalizer. Most listeners won’t want to alter the sound much, given that the MOMENTUM 4 Wireless arrives sounding very close to our ideal tuning. That the MOMENTUM 4 Wireless sells for a bit less than the flagship Sony WH-1000XM5 means it’s not only a great headset with better codecs and battery life, but it’s cheaper too. Still, if you need a cheaper headset take a look at our next pick.

A chart showing the microphone frequency response of the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless extending from 100 to 7kHz, where it falls off steeply.
The microphone of the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless should be able to pick up voice sounds no sweat.

Considering the limitations of built in mics on headphones, the Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless mic sounds fairly natural. It can struggle with noise rejection. Take a listen for yourself.

Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless microphone demo (Ideal conditions):

Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless microphone demo (Windy conditions):

Sennheiser MOMENTUM 4 Wireless microphone demo (Street conditions):

How does the microphone sound to you?

2718 votes
Sennheiser Momentum 4Sennheiser Momentum 4
Sennheiser Momentum 4
App for EQ changes • Simple, elegant design • USB-C charging
High-end ANC over-ear headphones focus on style and comfort
If you need total immersion in your music, you need some ANC over-ears. The Sennheiser Momentum 4 focus on style and comfort while delivering the core features high-end shoppers need with their headphones.

The Sennheiser HD 450BT is wireless for less

Usually the name Sennheiser is not associated with “budget” and the sub $150 USD noise cancelling HD 450BT looks pricier than it is. Sure, the ANC won’t outperform premium picks, but in terms of value, the HD 450BT supplies high quality codecs like aptX and aptX Low Latency, alongside standard AAC and SBC. You can also plug it in with the optional headphone jack.

Sennheiser HD 450BT
Sennheiser HD 450BT
7.3
Sennheiser HD 450BT
Sennheiser HD 450BT
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Hold up! Something’s different:

Some of our picks’ frequency response and isolation charts were measured with our old testing system. We have since purchased a Bruel & Kjaer 5128 test fixture (and the appropriate support equipment) to update our testing and data collection. It will take a while to update our backlog of old test results, but we will update this article (and many others!) once we’re able with improved sound quality measurements and isolation performance plots. These will be made obvious with our new chart aesthetic (black background instead of white).

Thank you for bearing with us, and we hope to see you again once we’ve sorted everything out.

At 27 hours and 2 minutes of battery life, the HD 450BT won’t outlast the MOMENTUM 4 Wireless, but it also costs about a third the price. It’s certainly a good enough battery for most people. Caveats here include that this pair of over-ear headphones might feel more like on-ears for some folks with ears larger than average. For a good sounding set of headphones with a dab of ANC, the Sennheiser HD 450BT offers a lot for not a lot of dough. Interestingly, Sennheiser also makes an Alexa enabled version for an added cost of $146.7 at Amazon.

By no means is the mic quality the strength of the Sennheiser HD 450BT. It’s fine, but not the leading reason to pick a pair up.

Sennheiser HD 450BT microphone demo (Non-standardized):

How does the microphone sound to you?

6497 votes
Sennheiser HD 450BTSennheiser HD 450BT
Sennheiser HD 450BT
Sound quality • Bluetooth 5.0, SBC, AAC, aptX Low Latency • Portable design
These headphones are good, but could have been great.
Although Sennheiser nailed the sound quality, it failed to create a comfortable headset with spacious ear cups for a wide array of listeners. This set of noise cancelling headphones does an okay job of reducing background noise, but doesn’t perform nearly as well as its big brother, the Sennheiser PXC 550-II. Unless you absolutely need USB-C charging, you’re better off saving up for the PXC 550-II.
$91.00 at Amazon
Save $108.95

For open-back cans, it’s hard to beat the Sennheiser HD 58X Jubilee

For a long time, the Sennheiser HD 600 and HD 650 were the best headphones you can get from Sennheiser that were actually obtainable (aka not absurdly expensive). Now we can add another one to the mix thanks to the good folks over at Drop (formerly Massdrop). Drop teamed up with Sennheiser to release the HD 58X Jubilee, which is a modern version of a limited edition pair from the past. This also happens to be very similar to the HD 600 and HD 650, with new drivers as well as a lower 150Ω impedance.

Sennheiser HD 58X Jubilee
Sennheiser HD 58X Jubilee
7.5
Pictured is the Sennheiser HD 58X laying on a desk.Close up of the Massdrop logoShot of Adam wearing the Sennheiser HD 58XA chart depicts the Massdrop x Sennheiser HD 58X Jubilee frequency response compared to the SoundGuys Studio Curve V2.A chart depicts the purposefully poor isolation of the Massdrop x Sennheiser HD 58X Jubilee open-back headphones.
Sennheiser HD 58X Jubilee
Sennheiser HD 58X Jubilee
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While this pair of headphones sounds great, it’s not always readily available since it’s a Drop exclusive. While they currently can be had year-round through the “Drop Studio” program, it may return to being sold in batches. If you miss one of the drops, you can just wait around for the next one.

Still, this is a great set of open-back headphones thanks to the comfortable padding and solid sound quality. Best of all, it only costs about $150 USD which, compared to some of Sennheiser’s other high-end models, is a steal. If you want an upgrade, the Drop x Sennheiser HD 6XX costs $399 at Sennheiser, and offers outstanding sound quality. Both of these headphones are much better than their price would suggest, but the HD 58X offers the better value—and the HD 6XX is the better quality headset.

Stay home with the Sennheiser HD 599

Not every set of headphones needs to follow you on your commute. Sometimes all you need is a comfortable pair of headphones like the Sennheiser HD 599 with which to plug in and relax. Sporting a balanced weight distribution and adjustable fit with velour and foam, the HD 599 has a long cable 3m cable for the times you want to move about, or a shorter, 1.2m cable.

Sennheiser HD 599
Sennheiser HD 599
7.5
A close up photo of the Sennheiser HD 599 resting on its side on a turquoise surface with a TV in the background.A hand holds the Sennheiser HD 599 in front of a window with greenery.A man on a couch rests his head on a pillow while wearing the Sennheiser HD 599 and looking at a phone.On a wood surface the Sennheiser HD 599 lays on its side showing the cable with pots and window in the background.The Sennheiser HD 599 rests on top of an audio interface with the 1/4-inch cable held in a hand inserting it into the headphone output. A wrapped 3.5mm cable rests nearby.The Sennheiser HD 599 isolation performance shown on a chartOur house curve compared against the Sennheiser HD 599.
Sennheiser HD 599

Its sound is characterized by a reasonably good treble reproduction, and some exaggerations in the low end. For casual music and media consumption it’s totally fine, but studio grade it is not. The HD 599 having open backs means you won’t want to use it out of your home due to sound leaks and almost no isolation. However, as a set of headphones for milling about the house and watching shows, or using your computer without bothering to charge batteries, it’s a solid set.

Sennheiser HD 599Sennheiser HD 599
Sennheiser HD 599

Is the Sennheiser HD 280 Pro good for studio work?

The Sennheiser HD 280 Pro is a studio classic, and it’s the only sub-$100 pick here. This set of dynamic, closed-back cans is ideal for studio use and is comfortable to wear for extended periods of time. Considering studio headphones is a category that can get quite expensive, this budget pair does its job pretty darn well.

Sennheiser HD 280 Pro
Sennheiser HD 280 Pro
7.5
The Sennheiser HD 280 Pro studio headphones with the ear pads facing upward.The Sennheiser HD 280 Pro studio headphones folded on a green book with the cable in full view.The Sennheiser HD 280 Pro studio headphones logo and coiled cable.A man wears the Sennheiser HD 280 Pro studio headphones in front of a brick wall.
Sennheiser HD 280 Pro
Sennheiser HD 280 Pro
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See review

The headband cushions may look silly but they promote even weight distribution and the earpads are breathable, preventing your ears from overheating. The 3.3-meter-long coiled cable offers plenty of leeway for navigating a studio environment; it’s also replaceable, which is a nice touch. What’s more, the earcups rotate and lay flat on the chest when not in use.

The Sennheiser HD 660S is a great set of headphones indoors

The Sennheiser HD 660S shown held in one hand.
42mm transducers are visible through the HD 660S’ steel mesh.

Were it not for the limited use cases of the Sennheiser HD 660S combined with the midrange to expensive price tag, it would be in our top choices. First off, it sounds great with a frequency response designed for analytical listening. However, the HD 660S is also open backed, meaning you’ll have to listen exclusively in quiet spaces. Sennheiser ships the headset with different cables for optional balanced connections, and the build is good.

For producers it could be just the ticket for mixing and mastering, with excellent natural sounding reproduction of instruments. It might just be a bit steep in price for a niche usability, unless that’s your niche.

Sennheiser HD 660SSennheiser HD 660S
Sennheiser HD 660S
$299.95 at Amazon
Save $200.00

What about true wireless earbuds from Sennheiser?

The Sennheiser MOMENTUM True Wireless 3 sits open on rough concrete outside.
The very strong case magnet hampers single-handed operation, but this also means it stays closed in your bag.

If you’re set on true wireless earbuds, Sennheiser has your back with the Sennheiser MOMENTUM True Wireless 3. These gorgeous earbuds have active noise cancelling that’s miles better than their predecessor. It also sounds great and has voice assistant support. The Sennheiser Smart Control app lets you can equalize the sound, update the firmware, enable the transparent hearing function, and remap the earbuds’ touch controls. The buds use aptX Adaptive, aptX, AAC, and SBC. aptX Adaptive is a rare inclusion on even the most premium wireless earbuds and headsets, and it balances connection stability with audio quality.

With the MOMENTUM True Wireless 3, you get a USB-C charging case that supports wireless charging. It can also fast charge the earbuds: 10 minutes in the case yields 60 minutes of playtime. The case provides an additional three charge cycles to the standalone 5-hour, 33-minute battery life.

However, if the price of $199.95 at Amazon for the MOMENTUM True Wireless 3 seems a bit steep, the Sennheiser CX Plus True Wireless might be more your speed. These blocky earphones have an IPX4 rating, great isolation and ANC for the price, and sells for $69.95 at Amazon. You’ll get good ANC and isolation, as well, so they’re suitable for commuting or listening to your tunes without distractions.

Athletes may favor the Sennheiser SPORT True Wireless, which does not have ANC, but supplies an IP54 against dust and sweat. Out of the box, it sounds good and has one of the best transparency modes we’ve reviewed for anyone exercising outdoors. It can be had for $99.95 at Amazon.

For the best of the best, get the Sennheiser HD 820

When it comes to high-end headphones, the Sennheiser HD 820 is close to the end all, be all. Unlike the HD 800 model, these are closed-back and feature a glass transducer that mitigates chamber resonances. That transparent design bleeds into the sound quality as things resonate crystal clear through this headset.

Although shifting from an open to closed-back design may seem a curious choice, Sennheiser claims that this is more effective as the same vast soundscape is achieved while simultaneously attenuating external noise. What’s more, the thick ear pads further block out environmental noise and create a comfortable fit. All of this comes at a high cost of $1699.95 at Amazon.

These audiophile headphones require a DAC and amplifier; naturally, Sennheiser has a specialized one available: the HDV 820 as a perfect complement to the HD 820 Sennheiser headphones… for another $2399.99 at Amazon.

We realize that few people will want to dig out nearly $5,000 from their savings, which is why our highlighted top five picks are more down to Earth.

The best Sennheiser headphones: Notable mentions

The Sennheiser HD 350BT Bluetooth headphones folded on top of a Chrome sling bag with the Sennheiser HD 450BT in the background.
The Sennheiser HD 350BT keep all controls on the right ear cup.
  • Sennheiser HD 559: Similar in style to the Sennheiser HD 599, the HD 559 markets itself as the budget version of the HD 559 (for $79.16 at Amazon) with one less cable.
  • Sennheiser HD 569: For the person who likes the idea of the HD 599, but wants a closed back isolating fit, this might be the set for you. It sells for $92.29 at Amazon.
  • Sennheiser HD 350BT: For only $69.95 at Amazon, these Bluetooth 5.0 headphones have great sound quality and are very portable, though not the most comfortable headset in the world.
  • Sennheiser IE 100 PRO Wireless: Want a pair of earbuds that can go from wired to wireless in just a few seconds? Well, then check out the IE 100 PRO Wireless. With this, Sennheiser includes its Bluetooth neckband adapter and MMCX earbuds for $117 at Amazon.
  • Sennheiser IE 300: These wired earbuds will please audiophiles with their 7mm Extra Wide Band Transducers. Its sound profile is similar to the Sennheiser MOMENTUM True Wireless 2 earbuds, but it has ear hooks and an easily replaceable cable. By no means cheap selling for $199.95 at Amazon, it’s still nice. If you want the cream of the crop when it comes to enthusiast IEMs, get the Sennheiser IE 900. but expect to pay $1299 at Sennheiser.

Listeners who want to stick to the Sennheiser family should consider any one of the alternatives below. Otherwise, there are great options beyond the Sennheiser brand. We like companies with a good track record like Audio-Technica, Sony, and Bose. with some of our favorite individual headsets being the Audio-Technica ATH-M50xBT2, Sony WH-1000XM5, and Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700.

What you should know about Sennheiser headphones

Most models are more specialized than general consumer cans, so you’ll need to know more info before you buy. While that doesn’t preclude every option from being a worthy consumer headset, it does mean Sennheiser headphones are a bit more niche than something like Beats.

The cat’s out of the bag: wireless headphones just can’t compete with wired equivalents. If you’re looking at one of the wireless Sennheiser headphones or wireless headphones in general, watch keenly for aptX compatibility. If you’re an iPhone user, stick to AAC.

How should the best Sennheiser headphones sound?

A chart showing the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless' frequency response closely matching the SoundGuys Consumer Curve, with only minor deviations.
With few exceptions, the Sennheiser Momentum 4 Wireless adheres to our target quite well. Even in the highs, which is very rare to see.

It depends on which headphones you’re looking at. If you’re going for a consumer headset like the MOMENTUM 4 Wireless, then you’ll notice the headphones that the treble aligns well with the SoundGuys consumer curve with a hint more bass. Treble notes are typically louder than mids, and Sennheiser seems to under-emphasize a certain treble range (usually from 3-7kHz) as on the Sennheiser MOMENTUM 3 True Wireless earbuds.

Studio headphones from Sennheiser sound different from consumer ones and have a more neutral bass and midrange response. These frequencies will sound equally as loud, or close to it, making it easier to mix audio. There are plenty of reasons why you’d want a studio sound from your headphones, and plenty of reasons why you wouldn’t want this. It all depends on your use case, and with most of Sennheiser’s wireless headsets, you can EQ the sound within the Smart Control app.

Do Sennheiser earbuds and headphones need an amp?

A photo of a hand turning up the knob of a headphone amplifier
Most consumer headphones don’t require an amplifier.

Some headphones like the HD 820 require an amp and DAC combo for optimal functionality. When you’re spending upwards of $2,000, the last thing you want to do is spend more money on external components. Fortunately, the other picks can skate by sans-amp.

How we choose the best Sennheiser headphones

Sennheiser HD 660S shown worn on the head in profile.
Our experts use objective data with experience.

When it comes to Sennheiser headphones, we know that most interested consumers are looking for the best sound quality they can afford, which is what we kept in mind when picking out each awardee per category.

We did our due diligence and researched top Sennheiser products carefully while taking into account the wide variety of listeners who may be drawn to the company’s products. We understand that few people will need or want the HD 820 but felt it worth acknowledging the headset’s technological achievements.

Why you should trust SoundGuys

Each writer at SoundGuys has accumulated years of experience reporting on the consumer audio market, and our staff adheres to a strict ethics policy. We don’t use sponsored content on the website at a time when doing so is the norm. SoundGuys’ survival depends almost exclusively on readers enjoying their purchases. We pride ourselves on transparently outlining objective facts, while accounting for the subjective experience to contextualize an audio product’s performance. When we do misspeak, we correct and own up to it.

Frequently asked questions about the best Sennheiser headphones

Yes, although EPOS which used to be under the Sennheiser umbrella has broken off as its own entity, you can still find some Sennheiser gaming headsets like the Sennheiser GAME ONE.

Yes, Sennheiser sells replacement ear pads which can be found here.

We would recommend checking to see if your headphones are still under warranty, and then reaching out to Sennheiser for troubleshooting and/or a replacement pair.

Both Sennheiser and Audio-Technica are audio stalwarts with decades-long presences in the industry. Each company has similar, competitive offerings, and you can’t go wrong with either. Though, many of Sennheiser’s more economical offerings tend to have smaller ear cups compared to Audio-Technica, which is something to keep in mind if you have average-sized or larger-than-average ears. The compromise to this is portability; there are certainly travel-friendly Audio-Technica headphones, but Sennheiser generally has an edge. Both companies know how to make a good-sounding product. As far as Bose is concerned, it’s targeted more toward a consumer demographic, and is a household name. We have a complete list of the best Bose headphones for your perusal.

Yes, several actually! Sennheiser makes flagship MOMENTUM 3 True Wireless, CX Plus True Wireless, CX True Wireless, Sport True Wireless, CX400BT, and sometimes you can find the MOMENTUM 2 True Wireless on sale. We’d recommend going with the first two because they have active noise cancellation and are newer. However, all will give you great audio quality.

Open back and closed back refers to the physical build of a set of headphones. Open backs do not block out room noise nearly as much as closed backs, but open backs deliver a purer sound because there are less echos produced by the sound rebounding off of the headphone walls.

When it comes to choosing between the two types, it really depends on the atmosphere in which you plan to use the headphones. If you are using them in a studio with noise isolation, open backs will give you a much more natural sound that is accurate to the recording. On the other hand, if you want headphones for commuting, you’ll want to go with closed back because the enclosed space allows for isolation. However, the closed back barrier can also produce slight echoing or delayed response times because of the high pressure in the chamber behind the drivers.