Amazon is having a 'stealth sale' on Sennheiser headphones

edit: This was originally about the Senn 350s, but it looks like the sale is broader than I'd realized. Read the thread for more info.

I went shopping over the weekend, thinking about replacing my $10 headset with a better unit, and spotted that Amazon has the Sennheiser PC 350 (retail $250) at $120 if you add it to your cart. So I picked up a pair.

Initial impressions: they come with just the headset. You don't get anything else. The PC-151s I bought a few years ago came with a USB headset adapter and a cable guide... in this case, you get the headset only.

They're closed headphones, but they're completely circumaural. I suspect you could wear them for reasonably long periods, although I've only been experimenting with these for about a half-hour. They clamp fairly tightly, so I don't think they'll be all-day units like the HD-600s are.

Sound quality is pretty good. They're not even close to the quality of my HD-600s, but they're not bad. Treble and bass are both a little constrained compared to the 600s. They don't have the air and power that the dedicated headphones do. (the HD600s are my absolute favorite listening device.) But imaging is very good, and for gaming audio, they do an outstanding job.

Keep in mind that I'm comparing a $250 retail headset, with microphone, against a $520 retail pair of headphones, so this is hardly fair. ($120 versus $330 if you compare actual purchase prices.) It's just what I have available to easily compare with. I'd MUCH rather use the HD600s for real music, but as headsets go, the PC-350 is pretty good. I like the isolation and the imaging, and while I could tell the two apart 10 times in 10 if blind testing was even possible on headsets, for $120, the PC-350s aren't bad at all. And they beat the absolute snot out of the surplus Plantronics unit I got for $10.

As a side note, I'm doing as close as I can to pure A/B testing. I'm driving both units simultaneously off my Total Bithead (which has two headphone jacks), and have them as close to level-matched as possible. I'm swapping ears back and forth, so when I say that they're missing quite a bit of bass and treble compared to the audiophile set, that's a pretty solid observation.

I'm not familiar with other headphones in that price range, so I don't know how they compare. But I definitely wouldn't buy them for music.

Mfgr? Link? :p

Oops, I didn't realize I never said "Sennheiser". I added that and a link in the original post. Note that the $120 price won't show until you add it to the cart, and it's gone up a dollar or so since yesterday.

edit: the stupid URL code in this damn software breaks Amazon links. I put in a link to my webspace that should instantly bounce you to the right spot on Amazon instead.

Malor wrote:

edit: the stupid URL code in this damn software breaks Amazon links. I put in a link to my webspace that should instantly bounce you to the right spot on Amazon instead.

Yeah, I can only guess it's trying to add a referrer code to the URL and doing it wrong.

Wow, it looks like almost all of Sennheiser's stuff is on sale on Amazon right now.

Sweet, I just bought the Sennheiser 555s. I've been drooling over those for months. Grab a pair for yourself, but use the amazon search box over

<==== THERE

Your link is borked, same way mine was. Stupid forum software.

Wow. The HD650's are only for $350.

My 600s are incredible headphones. I've gotten the impression, from cursory checks of reviews, that the later models aren't always better.

I updated the thread title to indicate that this covers more than just the one product I noticed.

any chance you could record somethign with them and let me hear it? That's always my biggest concern. I'd love something I could use for remote podcasting.

DF7 wrote:

Sweet, I just bought the Sennheiser 555s. I've been drooling over those for months. Grab a pair for yourself, but use the amazon search box over

<==== THERE

The HD-555's are $108 in my cart, not that great of a deal IMO. My cousin got those for $89 last year. The HD-595's are showing up at $183 for me, I paid $165 shipped for those last year.

Um, well, you don't want my voice as a sample, it's pretty awful. I don't have speakers set up right now, but I could probably record some music from the other headphones, through the simple expedient of turning the volume way up and putting the mike about a half-inch away.

What kind do you like?

Any voice is good, even if you don't like the sound of your voice. Playing music through it really won't help.

I have never had an open ear set of headphones. I tend to use headphones when I don't want to disturb the little lady, who may be either sitting ~15 feet away watching television, or downstairs sleeping with the door shut. I imagine that I'll be alright for the closed door scenario, but will listening to something at normal volume on an open ear phone (say, the 595's) be noticeably audible to someone on the other side of the room?

I actually made a comparison file of a Sennheiser PC160, iMac built in mic, and a Samson c03u mic just this last week or so. PC160 != PC350, but if you think the comparison would be helpful, here it is.

I'd bought the Sennheiser headset for a distance ed / webinar education grant we are working on and made the recording to compare how it sounded against our more expensive podcasting mic.

is that the headset first I assume?

Yes, headset, built-in, samson.

I read that story! Nice comparison though, I should try it with my Audio Technica vs my Mac.

Mr Crinkle wrote:

I have never had an open ear set of headphones. I tend to use headphones when I don't want to disturb the little lady, who may be either sitting ~15 feet away watching television, or downstairs sleeping with the door shut. I imagine that I'll be alright for the closed door scenario, but will listening to something at normal volume on an open ear phone (say, the 595's) be noticeably audible to someone on the other side of the room?

If the room is dead quiet it might be noticeable, but hardly bothersome. It's less loud than a standard pair of headphones just sitting there open, for comparison.