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Sennheiser launches HD 490 PRO Studio Headphones

Sennheiser's new open-back headphones for mixing at home are shaping up to be a complete package.
By
January 26, 2024
TL;DR
  • Sennheiser revealed the HD 490 PRO reference studio headphones at NAMM 2024, aimed at professionals in music production.
  • Two types of ear pads are included for different sound preferences, and you get a free lifetime license for the dearVR MIX-SE plugin.
  • The headphones are available in two versions, HD 490 PRO and HD 490 PRO Plus, which include additional accessories, starting at $399.

Two pairs of the Sennheiser HD 490 Pro open-back headphones.
The Sennheiser HD 490 Pro comes with interchangeable fabric and velour earpads.

At the NAMM Show 2024, Sennheiser revealed its latest offering for audio professionals, the HD 490 PRO reference studio headphones. These headphones are targeted for tasks such as producing, mixing, and mastering, featuring an open-back design and tuned for accurate sound reproduction. They also come with two types of ear pads: velour for a slightly warmer sound and fabric for a flat, neutral response, depending on your stage production preference.

Sennheiser HD 490 PRO frequency response charts for different ear pads material.
Sennheiser

Both earpads are machine-washable, so you can toss them in with your laundry when they get dirty. Additional features include a patented cable coil structure to reduce unwanted noise transmission if it accidentally hits your desk or rubs against your clothing. They also have a braille texture on the headband fork to quickly tell which side is left and right, which will be helpful when working in the dark.

To sweeten the deal, Sennheiser includes a license for the dearVR MIX-SE plugin, developed by Dear Reality. This audio software provides a virtual mixing environment, simulating what it’s like to listen to your mix through loudspeakers in different environments — from the mixing room to a movie theater, the club, or your car. This feature is particularly beneficial for audio professionals who require reliable reference monitoring but may not have access to multiple studio setups. If you already own some of Sennheiser’s other open-back studio headphones, the program also includes tuned presets for each of them.

The HD 490 PRO series is available now in two variants: the standard HD 490 PRO ($399) and the HD 490 PRO Plus ($479). The Plus version includes additional accessories such as a 3 m cable, a transport case, and an extra fabric headband pad.