Headphone review: Sennheiser HD280 Pro

After about 15 years of loving Sennheiser’s open-backed headphones (HD590, HD650, and HD600), and using first EH150 and then HD201 closed-backed headphones for tracking acoustic guitar and vocals, I got tired of dealing with their excessively-hyped low end and decided to spend a bit more for something vaguely neutral-sounding. I didn’t set out to buy Sennheisers, but a Sound on Sound recommendation guided me to these, and I wasn’t disappointed.

Most of the bass region is surprisingly restrained (although they do have a noticeable sub-bass hump around 50-100 Hz), the mid-range is clear, and, although a bit rolled-off compared to the open-backed models, the treble is enough to give a well-rounded overall sound that won’t fatigue your ears. I don’t personally plan to mix on them, but some do, and for tracking it sure beats listening through a bass resonator like the HD201s.

Apart from the slight sub-bass hump, the only other drawback of these cans is the leatherette finish on the inside of the headband and ear pads, which I know, from my experience with the EH150s, will likely not age well.

The final positive to mention is that these are truly around-the-ear cans, with even more ear clearance than the HD650/HD600 models, and I can’t imagine anyone having ears large enough to be cramped by them.

Headphone review: Sennheiser HD280 Pro

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