Sennheiser HD 800 S

9.0
9.0 score
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Sennheiser HD 800 S Review Facts

When looking for headphones, there are many different types to choose from and they vary as widely as most products. Some are built for gaming, some for talking on your phone, others for leisurely listening to music, and then there are professional sets. These are not intended for just listening in on a good tune or talking with friends.

If you have ever worked at, or are working at a studio, then you are likely going to know what we mean when we are talking about the need for high definition sound. Like a drawing, when you are putting together a music file, they come in layers, and you will want to know you are catching every single layer. With these, you will likely have little doubt. So, what do they offer? Let’s find out.

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros

Great sound quality

Balanced

Comfortable

Durable

Layered sound quality

Cons

Need amplifier to really get the best

Activities for Use

Activities for Use

This is theprofessional type of headset you look for when you are working in a music studio, or a sound studio, and want to be able to pull apart what you hear. While many would imagine that would make them great for leisure listening or active use when just wanting to listen to what’s on your computer, tablet or phone, they would be wrong. This is not meant for personal enjoyment in its build.

This set is built specifically for making music and as such it does block out much of the noise around you, however, it is built for studio wear. That means you would wear this while standing at a microphone or soundboard rather than at a desk, and it doesn’t have a built-in microphone itself. This is for use with other sound building equipment, not as a standalone piece of equipment.
Basic Features

Basic Features

What can you consider basic when you are looking at something made for advanced hardware use? It looks and seems like an advanced headset because it is one. While at first glance you may believe it is ‘just another headset’ you would be very wrong. The look of the outer ear cuffs isn’t just some fancy-looking design, it is actually built to be studio used, and looks the part naturally.

The most basic use you could try to put it to is just to listen to your music or videos. While it can be used for that, this product is not being put to its full potential when used for leisure listening. Looking to its advanced hardware and uses are where you will actually come to understand what this pair actually does and what defines it.
Advanced Features

Advanced Features

This quality headset is designed to be a level of quality and design in which the beginning music maker can utilize the tools of the trade. This means the majority of what is in this product are considered advanced simply because they are made to pull apart music the same way one would pull apart the layers of a PSD file on photoshop as an artist. They can be used for just listening, but that is not the purpose behind the build.

The delivery system is built of layers of sound-producing pieces rather than a single part like most headsets are designed to do. If you were to pull open a single earpiece you would find more than one layer of tech delivering the music and effects. It even has the built up exoskeleton to contain all of what makes this pair go and sets it apart from your average set.

A steel weave is used with the exoskeleton to prevent fingers from accidentally tampering with the insides of this set so that nothing gets damaged while allowing airflow for extensive use. There is also a perfected use of padding to prevent it from gaining the appearance of your usual large ‘at home’ sets as well while still remaining very comfortable to the wearer. The complete surface area for each earpiece is large to allow for long-wearing periods as well.

They also have a cable which completely disconnects from both the device being listened to and the set itself. This is not a wireless headset however, this is to allow special cords needed for soundboard equipment to be plugged in exchange for the cord it comes with. It also has special built-in drivers to give you the most immersive sound you can get with the pair alone.

If you are purchasing them for a studio, however, it is still recommended that you use extra equipment to boost the sound quality even further. The reason for this is that while they already provide some of the best quality possible, there are some levels that remain to quiet to pick apart.
Sound Quality

Sound Quality

If you purchase this product for at-home use despite the intended use for them, be aware that this is a ‘listen to only’ device. This is not a set you can use to communicate, but it will definitely have a much higher quality sound than you would get from any other pair. The downside is that everyone else would hear what you are listening to, and they do not entirely block outside noises either.

The HD that this provides in sound is best when you are somewhere quiet and can fully take in uninterrupted sound from the pair. While quieter sounds, like keyboard tapping, will be blocked out from just how loud and how much sound this pair produces, you won’t block out other louder noises. They can immerse you into the world of your games, however, and something like Skyrim may blow your mind with a set like this. Not only will you see everything in great detail due to the graphics, but you will feel like you are facing whatever direction the sounds would come at you from as they are. In other words, if it sounds like it is behind you, it probably is.

Of course, the resounding agreement is that having a quiet room is the best way to enjoy the effects since they don’t block out outside noises like videos and talking. Instead, they simply amplify what is in the sounds you are listening to. This is great to get the effect, but not as good when other sounds are competing.
Connectivity

Connectivity

This is a corded set, so connectivity is not something you are likely to have an issue with. The agreement is that if you want to get the most out of the quality, however, you will want to use some sort of amplifier to generate it. This product does have the ability to connect to anything that has the plugin that fits it as well.

When working in a studio, you will need different ends to hear different types of equipment, so of course, the cord it comes with detaches from both ends. This allows you to get the right ends for whatever it is you want to connect with.
Comfort

Comfort

Built to be worn for hours at a time, this high-quality set is one of the most comfortable you can get. If all you want is sound, and communication is unneeded, then you might actually find this set will impress with the fact you can game from dawn to dusk and won’t likely find yourself with a headache. When you are in a studio, you need something that does its job without becoming unendurable for wearing.

The cushioning was developed to work without being excessive in appearance as well. It has just the right amount to allow for a comfortable fit without going out and away from the set itself. There is just the right amount of pressure as well to allow for comfortable wear while not allowing them to slip from where you need them.

Of course, they won’t be good if you are up and moving around a lot, they are bigger and bulky making them a pair for wearing while sitting or standing but not really moving. They can be used for listening to music on your devices, or in-game easily. They are intended for the best quality of layered sound over anything else as stated, and the physical design shows this.
Style

Style

Surprisingly these are very stylish and modernized in appearance. While you can tell looking at them that they are not your stereotypical gaming or music headgear, they don’t look overly mechanical or daunting in shape and construction. Instead, they used a lot of geometric shapes and studio-style look to give them a modern appearance.

The style also optimizes their performance in ways that might not be immediately obvious. By having the shape and open earpieces, this pair has room for all of the construction to give you that layered sound instead of cramming it all into a single piece. It also allows for the open-air flow despite tightly cupping around the ear. The open wire mesh venting in the exoskeleton allows air to reach your ear as well as keeping the set from overheating.

By staying to this unique looking design, this pair offers optimum performance with a great look for studio headsets. So, if you want a more unique look to your set, you will definitely have it with this pair.
Durability

Durability

The materials used for this set appear to be high quality and durable according to those who have purchased and put them to use. They have a good plastic build in the headband, and the cups are made of high-grade materials from the mesh to the hard exoskeleton. Even the cushion on the earpieces are durable and create a great comfort zone around the ear without ripping and tearing through long-time use.

The only downside seems to be in the joint areas. Those who have been using them for a while, or who have had the opportunity to test the set say that the joints seem to be a bit on the loose side. This could mean that they are fragile, but it could just need a little tightening.

The main complaint about durability seems to come from the fact that, for their price, there was more plastic involved in the build. This hasn’t proved to be an issue however since the quality there still holds out as being less prone to break under proper use. Again, though, loose joints are the main concern and might be something to consider.
Ease of Use

Ease of Use

These don’t have to be all that complicated to use, though they can be if you are trying to learn how to use sound mixing or music-making equipment. The cord it comes with is intended for use with regular computers and everyday items. This is a low amp cord that is easily powered through the average devices.

The more complicated part of using these is if you intend to use them with mixing equipment. You’ll need different cords and amplifying devices to get the best sound quality possible for mixing. This still is relatively simple when it comes to the headset though, plug in the right cord to the right device and you are ready to go.
Power Source

Power Source

Like any corded set, this one gets its power from whatever device it is plugged into, the difference is in what cord you are using. If you need it to have a lot more power and quality sound, you will need to plug it into a device that can send that much power to your device. In other words, your typical 80 amp cord would allow your PC, tablet or gaming device to power the set, and it would have good sound.

If you wanted the top quality that this set can provide however, you would need a higher amp cord, an none of the devices mentioned could truly power it. This would be more for a mixing table or other large music/sound table device which has the ability to supply the needed power and quality.
Price

Price

When you go for quality sound and want the best, you can expect things to get pricey quick- especially when what you ask for is delivered. With this particular pair you can expect to pay around $1600 USD for this set, and according to the professionals, it is the best quality for the price you pay on this type. If you are wanting better quality than this, you will likely be paying at least double.

The good news is their warranties are standard 2-year warranty’s, which means you can get them fixed or replaced. Unfortunately, these are out of country builds, so doing so may prove to be a bit of a hassle.
Key Features

Key Features

-High definition
-Built for the studio performance
-Interchangeable cords
-Comes with everything
-Comfortable
Bottom Line

Bottom Line

This is best for those intending to mix music or use in a studio situation, but if you have the quiet space to enjoy them otherwise they could be worth looking into. These are definitely not made as a leisurewear set and should be treated as the high-quality package they are.