Think wired budget-friendly over-ears with an in-line remote incorporated to help you take hands-free phone calls and control your music time; the only image you should have is that of the Sennheiser HD 400S! These headphones succeeded the Sennheiser HD 4.20 so you already know the HD 400S offers excellent build quality, provides great comfort around the head, and fits your budget so you don’t have to break the bank to acquire them.
There are tons of brands out there producing headsets that would blow your mind so why stick with such a household name as Sennheiser? A closer look at this Sennheiser HD 400S review will show us what these headphones do better than the HD 4.20 and more importantly, tell you if they are worth your money and time.
Design and Build
There is a great semblance between the headband of the Sennheiser HD 400S and that of the HD 4.20, they are nearly identical. It sports a plastic frame and a sliding, the dented plastic band was used to design its extenders. The design incorporated a hinge into the base of the headband allowing the user to fold the headphone into a compact package. Y-shaped yolks are located under the hinges which attach to either side of the earcups.
The HD 400S exacts a secure clamping force around the head while remaining comfortable. Built into the underside of the headband is thin padding coated with soft rubber or silicone material to ensure the headphones stay in place.
The Sennheiser HD 400S are equipped with excellent sized earcups. While the ear cups are large enough to fit perfectly over the ears, they do not appear or feel bulky. You will find their oval shape and size to be the same as those you find on the HD 4.20. The earcups on the HD 400S maintain a low profile thanks to their size and matte black coloring.
The Sennheiser HD 400S is equipped with a removable cable measuring a comfortable 1.2m in length. The 2.2 connectors are designed to twist into position on the earcup through a locking mechanism. A microphone and remote control are built into the cable to improve hands-free calling while the cable ends in a 3.5 mm connector.
Sennheiser HD 400S Performance and Sound
There is a sub boost noticeable around the 30 Hz mark on the low frequencies of the Sennheiser HD 400S. This adds extra energy to every song that uses sub frequencies as a means for whipping up emotional impact. It achieves a perfect balance by boosting the lows without covering the low-mids in a shroud.
We discovered in the course of testing these headphones with a song that the low frequencies of the kick drum and those of the sub synth offered a certain solid presence. They built a large foundation on which the rest of the mix could balance itself. And all this is achieved without masking other midrange synths and vocals.
There is a low mid boost noticeable around the 300 Hz mark on the middle Frequencies of the HD 400S Sennheiser headphones. This offers a good base to the pianos, electric guitars, bass guitars, and strings, nonetheless, we can’t call this feeling ‘a feeling of the body.’ On the other hand, we find that the midrange gets a sort of smiley face curve in the midrange due to a cut experienced around the 1 kHz mark accompanied immediately by a boost in the high mids. This ensures that the user wouldn’t get a cloudy feel but the levels of midrange instruments in the music feel slightly crooked. You will find that vocals are usually louder in the mix thanks to the high mid boost.
There is an emphasis found at different points across the upper octave, upper treble, and lower treble which are brought on by the high frequencies of the Sennheiser HD 400S. A cut is also noticeable around 9 kHz which gives the highs a special shape able to offer detail to high-frequency instruments while keeping sibilance away.
There is a decent feeling of contrast to be found in the height and width range on the soundstage of the HD 400S. It offers a powerful abstract center which provides good contrast for instruments spread out wide. You may experience a depth and extra tallness to the height with the sub energy present within your chest completing the contrast in the clearer and lighter regions of the high frequencies. You will find that the high mid boost makes the sense of depth feel a little crooked but often noticeable depending on how the mix utilized soundstage.
Final Thoughts on Sennheiser HD 400S
What Sennheiser HD 400S offers here is a durable, compact, and excellent sounding headphone for vocal-centric music genres like rock, folk, indie music, hip-hop, and pop. You can’t go wrong with the great value on offer here.