New Headphone User

Due to family considerations, I recently bought a new pair of Sennheiser HD600 (with stock cord) for a great price here on AudiogoN. As my preamp already has a build in headphone amplifier, I did not have to purchase one. What a fantastic purchase! For $259 I have outstanding sound with no room interactions and I can listen however loudly I wish without disturbing everyone else. Also as a bonus, the sweet spot is a 10' radius.
I am posting this because I am actually shocked at the fidelity one can obtain in a pair of headphones that, relative to my system cost, is inexpensive. How many of you have headphones and what are your impressions compared to listening through your speakers?

I have very good Headphone set-up also listed in my systems,
I love Senn HD600 but stock cord must go, get good aftermarket brand like Cardas......the improvement is not subtle, this is mandatory upgrade.

Headphones are capable of incredible detail and tonal variations that rivals or surpasses best stereo systems but 3D soundstage is severely limited vs full stereo system.
An analogy:

Good headphone system - very clear detailed photo of object
Good stereo system - seeing same object in real 3D form

Good analogy. I am currently looking for a Cardas 15'cable as I have read many times what you have posted. I really do not know what improvements I will notice with the Cardas, however, as I require 15' vs the stock 10' I thought that I might as well take the plunge.


Headroom has a couple of replacement options for the Senn. cables, as well as high quality extensions (my "sweet spot" is +/- 25 feet). Their web site is

Best regards, Dave.
The 600's were my headphone reference for quite a while. The Cardas cable is a nice upgrade. You may also want to experiment with dedicated headphone amps later- especially tubed units.

I've since moved on to the Stax Classic System, which I'm thoroughly enjoying. With a 5 year old daughter in the house, headphones are an essential part of my audiophile experience!

Have Fun!!
Look into for a great headphone-only forum.
You would really appreciate an external headphone amp like the Headroom. I do 70% listening at work with my Headroom MOHR and Ety Er-4S, sounds great with the HD-600 too. It is much more cost effective to do an accurate headphone system than getting the same result from a loudspeaker simply because the acoustics of a room. Happy listening.
I agree: get yourself an aftermarket cable (I recommend the Equinox by Stefan AudioArt) and a headphone amp (I recommend the Ray Samuals Audio XP-7, but there's lots of great choices out there -- depends on yopur budget and taste). The Stax set up is very nice too, but pricey. I really enjoy my headphone set up. It's more intimate with the music and you can hear all the details. The HD600s are my current fav.
Another note about the STAX-

I agree with Budrew about their expense when new....BUT I bought a complete STAX Classic system on the "Gon recently for under $700.00 ($1,500 retail). This was less than my HD-600's, 15 ft Cardas Cable, and Musical Fidelity V2 X-Cans Headphone amp, and outperforms that combo by a fair margin (for my listening tastes).

Other fine amps for driving the HD-600's that I've used include the Sugden Headmaster (It drove the HD-600's better than my Headroom Max) and the Gilmore unit.

Enjoy your journey through headphone mania!
Headphones are certainly good as a back-up, but they do not represent acoustic space in a correct manner.Second rate system regardless of what it can do right.
Enjoy the HD-600s (my choice as well), and check out You will probably be amazed at what you can get from a dedicated HP amp.
Hello all. I use my HD 600's connected to my Earmax pro via a 10ft. pair of Cardass cable. Pure sonic bliss. I find the source is very important as this is a very revealling headphone. My source for the record is a modified/upgraded Anthem CD1. I have this feeding a Taddeo Digital Antidote II via XLO Signature interconnects. From my Taddeo to my Earmax Pro I'm using Hamonic Technology Pro Sillway II's. Tubes swapping in this system is worthwhile. For the moment I've settled on a Siemens CCa (60's vintage) in my Anthem, Mullard for the 12AT7 input on my Earmax, and Telefunken CCa's in the output position. I love my setup. I've also tried my Seinnhesser/Earmax combo on my Veceur 2.2/Kora Hermes dac from my 2 channel rig with SPECTCULAR results. Amazing dynamics and incredible seperation between instruments...inside and outside my head. U know what I'm talking about if your a headphone nut. But I cant afford to buy that combo again for my headphone setup, so the Anthem/Taddeo combo keeps me satisfied.

This headphone is incredible bang for the buck as it can be had brand new on Audiogon for under $250
Throw a good tube headphone amp on it and mate it to a good source. You wont be dissapointed.
O ya......upgrade that cheap cable on it

Happy listening

Many thanks to your thoughts/advice. I will look into a separate headphone amp and see whether or not I can accommodate it in my current setup.
I have surfed around the HeadFi website and almost unanimously people say to replace the cable, as the stock one is not as good musically. It does seem odd that there are really no "cable wars" with respect to changing this stock cable to an aftermarket one vs. the cable wars that I have read numerous times with interconnects and speaker wire. Regardless, I require 15' anyway and the extra cost is not overly horrendous.