Sennheiser has announced the HD 560S, a pair of headphones that the company says is designed for “analytical listening sessions at an accessible price.” The HD 560S will retail for $200 and will be available starting September 29.
The company has been rolling out special editions of some of its most popular products, like the HD 800 S or the HD 25, in celebration of its 75th anniversary, but rest assured, the longtime audio company is still delivering new products alongside its commemorative items.
According to Sennheiser, the headphones feature open-back earcups and transducers that offer A/B comparisons of mixes, sources, and media formats, with the goal of allowing listeners to hear music the way it was intended to be heard. The cans will have a frequency response of 6Hz to 38 kHz, with the hopes of being able to “reproduce the complex bass sounds found in modern music.”
Open-back headphones have been treasured by audiophiles for their excellent, large soundstage reproduction and clarity. Because sound cannot escape outside of traditional headphones, many argue that they can sound muddier and with a more compressed audio profile. Those who favor open-backs do so normally expecting to pay for the design: They typically cost considerably more than Sennheiser is asking for with the HD 560S.
“We are excited to introduce the entry-level audiophile HD 560S headphones. In terms of bass response and value for money, this product represents a paradigm shift for open, dynamic headphones,” Jermo Köhnke, a product manager at Sennheiser, said in a statement. “With linear acoustics tailored to critical listening sessions, we have designed the HD 560S for audiophiles who evaluate a recording’s entire journey through the audio path.”
Sennheiser says the HD 560S uses a lightweight chassis which, if true, would go a long way in making long periods of listening more comfortable. However, the company doesn’t go as far as providing actual weight numbers. Sennheiser says it developed the coil of the headphones to create great sound regardless of the audio source, and the HD 560S comes equipped with a detachable 3-meter cable, a 6.3mm jack, and a 3.5mm adapter with a flexible 15cm lead.
At $200, the HD 560S seem poised to deliver a sought-after open-back design at a considerable discount, and it comes after the success Sennheiser has had this year in the true wireless earbuds category (the Momentum True Wireless 2 are amazing, and the CX 400BT still sound great despite their flaws). If they can produce the exceptional sound quality that has become synonymous with the Sennheiser brand, and do so at a widely accessible price, then it’s hard to envision these cans not finding success. That’s a big if, of course, which is why we are evaluating these headphones in a full review. Stay tuned, we’ll have the verdict on the latest from Sennheiser soon enough.