CARBIDESOUND - Simon Charles - Dubai based location sound recordist
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Review - Sennheiser HD6mix Headphones

Sennheiser Middle East very kindly loaned me a set of the HD6 Mix headphones to test out.

As a long time user of the Sony MDR-7506 headphones I have been wanting to try something new for a while. I have never liked the Sennheiser HD-25's or the new HD-26's, don't get me wrong, they sound great but the "on ear" design just doesn't work for me.

First impressions of the HD6’s are good, they have a professional quality feel to them, feel very well made and have a good weight. In the box you get a very hardy cary case, 2 sets of earpads, a plastic one and one in a lovely velour material. My personal preference is the velour fabric one as the plastic earpads always seem to disintegrate quickly. You also get straight and coily cables, I’ll get on them in a bit.

One other thing I dislike about the HD-25's is that the cable comes from the right, I like it to come from the left. The HD6's have an option for both sides, you just plug the cable in which ever side you want.

Most components can be easily replaced by the user, cables, earpads, headband padding, even the logo panels on the sides can be replaced.

One of the things that I'm not that impressed with is the cable. It's rather stiff and doesn't fall straight, both the straight and the coily option are made out of the same cable material so both have the same issues. I hope the cable will soften in time. The 2.5mm connector to the headphones has a bayonet function so they lock in place and will not fall out. The build quality of the cables is excellent and should last the abuses of set life, if they soften.

Coming from the Sony's which have an incredibly flat frequency response the HD6's have a slightly more coloured sound, as they are from the DJ product line there is a slight boost in the lower end. They do sound amazing and slightly coloured sound is not bad in any way, it's just something different which I would have to get used to.

So, after spending a few days on set with these, I don’t think I will be getting a pair, at least not for on set mixing. The sound is great but just doesn’t give me the sound I like when mixing. However, the main reason is the cable, its just way too stiff and you can hear all the rubbing and knocks that the cable gets. Again, they are from the DJ line so they are built for those situations. My other concern is the build, they are very well built, however they may not do well in the field. The headband is chunkier and is prone to knocks, being solid plastic this could get scuffed and damaged pretty quickly. The earcups do not fold in any way at all, this is something I love about the MDR-7506’s, I can attach them to my sound bag and fold the earcups in and they sit nicely on the side, without dragging on the ground or wherever surface I’ve placed the bag. The HD6’s will not sit well on the side of the the bag which means I would need to store and carry them separately, not very convenient.

To sum up: The Sennheiser HD6’s are amazing headphones and at a reasonable price (approx $150, at the time of writing). They sound great if you are listening to music, but not for critical listening situations.

The search continues for a replacement for my Sony MDR-7506’s.