German headphones maker Sennheiser introduced three new headphones lines at IFA 2016: Sennheiser HD 2, Sennheiser HD 4 and Sennheiser HD 500. While the first is an all-new addition to Senneheiser’s existing product portfolio, the others are updates to previously-launched headphones.
Sennheiser HD 2
The Sennheiser HD 2 headphones are of the on-ear kind and they represent the entry level in this round of announcements. The highlight is on the bass, which should be tight and powerful thanks in part to the closed-back design, and on the comfort, which – the manufacturer claims – has been especially designed for long listening sessions. The Sennheiser HD 2 are foldable to make transport easier.
The tech specs include a 18-18,000 Hz frequency response, 26Ω impedance and <0.5% (1kHz/100dB) total harmonic distortion. The highs seem to suffer a bit in terms of extension, but this is to be expected on budget headphones.
Four different variations have been introduced: the Senneiser HD 2.10, consisting in the headphones only; the Sennheiser HD 2.20s, designed for use with phones and sporting a microphone and a four-contact 3.5-mm jack; the Sennheiser HD 2.30i and Sennheiser HD 2.30G, sporting a microphone and call and volume controls for iOS and Android devices respectively.
Prices range from HD 2.10’s 50€/$ to HD 2.20s’ 70€/$, with HD 2.30 being the top model with a price tag of 90€/$. They are available both in white and black variants.
Sennheiser HD 4
The Sennheiser HD 4 series is aimed at those who do not wish to compromise isolation in exchange for portability thanks to its closed-back, over-ear design. The size is indeed larger than that of the HD2, but the company made them foldable so that one can more easily store them away when not needed. The press release details the “fantastic isolation” and the “soft pads” which should grant great comfort, but it needs to be seen whether that is up to expectations.
The Sennheiser HD 4 seems to fare better than their smaller “brother”, with a frequency response of 18-20,000 Hz, 18Ω impedance and <0.5% (1kHz/100dB) THD.
Three different models are available: the Sennheiser HD 4.20s has a universal remote with microphone, while the Sennheiser HD 4.30i (iOS) and HD 4.30G (Android) respectively boast a remote with added vol+/vol- controls. There is a slight difference in terms of design between the two, with the 4.20s appearing slimmer than the 4.30 thanks to an external arc design.
The HD 4.20s are priced at 80€/$ and HD 4.30 have a 100€/$ price tag. You can choose both white and black when purchasing the headphones.
Sennheiser HD 500
Few headphones can boast a story and tradition akin to the Sennheiser HD 500‘s one. The 2016 update to the memorable line includes three different models, each one with an open-back, over-ear design and E.A.R. technology (Ergonomic Acoustic Refinement) which is “designed to more effectively channel the audio signal directly into the ears of the listener for a more satisfying listening experience”.
The Sennheiser HD 599 is the flagship headphone, the Sennheiser HD 579 is the mid-range one and the Sennheiser HD 559 is the lowest entry in the HD 500 family. The difference lies in the sound quality and in the different sound signature. The only closed-back unit of the set is the Sennheiser HD 569, basically a HD 559 with a closed back. The box includes both a simple cable and a cable with a microphone to use the headphones in pair with a smartphone.
Available in ivory, grey and black, these are the different price points for the three units:
- HD 599: 250€/$;
- HD 579: 200€/$;
- HD 569: 180€/$;
- HD 559: 150€/$.