Hifiman he400se vs Sennheiser HD560s (Comparison) - I bought both

Both are fairly comfortable. 560s feels like it has slightly more clamping force, but it's also lighter weight. 400se has larger and deeper ear cups, friendlier to people with bigger ears, though 560s isn't bad in that regard.

He400se doesn't need an external amp. It can be fine if you like music quieter, and it still sounds good, but not having one limits your options. On my audio interfaces, I find that there's a very fine line between loud enough and clipping, which is limiting. The apple dongle works fine with it though, but maybe I just like music to an unhealthy loud extent.

In terms of tone/freq response, I'm not the most technical or well versed in this regard. But I feel like both are versatile, relatively balanced while appealing to people's preferences.

560s soundstage has a lot of reflections in the higher frequencies, whereas the reflections of he400se feel more balanced across the spectrum. This may just be personal bias, but I feel like he400se a bit more plain , accurate and neutral, have a bit more body. Whereas 560s offers more of an angle.

I slightly prefer the sound of the he400se. But 560s are probably a safer recommendation for the needs of the average consumer. Lightweight. Bass and treble are more apparent. Louder / No need for external gear / no risk of clipping.

Hypothetically, if he400se weighed less (but same size/shape) and required less gain, I'd crown it the winner. But as is, I think both are dead-even.

Your thoughts?


Nice comparison and nicely done.  Very helpful and useful info.  What other equipment are you using in terms of amp, DAC, etc.?  I started with the HE400S, which is really quite good for the $, and then moved up to the Arya Stealth that offers more of everything, as it damn well should for the much higher price.

I’m running mine with a Singxer SA1 Class-A amp fed by a Denafrips Iris DDC that feeds i2S via HDMI to a Musician Pegasus R2R DAC and sounds great with either headphone.  All connections are made via LavriCable silver balanced interconnects and headphone cable.  I’ve got a Linear Tube Audio MZ2 tubed preamp/headphone amp (with upgraded linear power supply) in a box waiting for me to listen to that should be a nice upgrade — I hope.  Anyway, look forward to hear what other equipment you were using to make your comparisons as that’s always helpful info for perspective.  Anyway, thanks for the nice comparison!


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