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After lots of "but's" and "if's" I ultimately decided against the HD58X and committed myself to the HD6XX. Here's is my reasoning:
1) The uncertainty factor. This is a completely new, untested product and it is very hard to imagine how they will perform once they ship out in June next year. There are some reviews out there but to be frank - they are just too few! They don't really give as much of a general overview of these headphones as I would expect to receive before purchasing a product. Sure, we also have some very nice graphs but given the fact that there might be some changes to the final product (wasn't there some word about Massdrop asking Sennheiser to fine-tune the bass?) the uncertainty remains.
2) The glossy headband. Now, I get it - some people might like it and I was completely hooked on how the HD58X looks like on the first picture in the description of this drop but I am just not a fan of gloss in general. HD6XX, which is more matte, has a touch of gloss which is just perfect. All the gloss around the HD58X will attract a ton fingerprints in no time and also makes the overall product look and feel cheaper (in my opinion!).
3) The sound signature. Just a personal preference, but given the reviews and graphs these headphones seem to be brighter than HD600 and HD650. I prefer a warmer sound signature from brighter as the latter tend to be more tiring to listen to.
I am very curious how these headphones will turn out to be and look forward to hearing more opinions from people who have tested the final product. My only wish is that there would be more reviewers for such an interesting product (I really did have a hard time choosing between these and HD6XX for the past few days!) and I hope they will turn out great!
I have the hd6xx and I think u made the right choice. I, too, am curious about the 58x. I will see how this shakes out and maybe get it on the next run.
You got me at "committed". No need to shed out $$ when my brand new HD6xx hasn't totally break in yet.
I'm not sure if it's brighter than the HD650/600. But from what I've read so far (SBAF) it's warmer than the 600s, around equal or less to the warmness of 650s but with punchier highs , slightly less bass extension/micro-dynamics and higher distortion. In my opinion, your probably getting what your paying for. The $50 difference from the HD6xx to HD58x has to come from somewhere and although the fancy box is part of that equation but your definitely losing something from the 6xx/600 in order to attain this new price point.
According to this piece from a review (found under the Description of this drop), the HD58X are brighter and less warm than HD650/HD6XX:
“The HD58X Jubilee is indeed a bit faster than my well-worn HD650 and also a newer HD6XX. Sound is more immediate, more extended, not as warm/smooth overall. The "veil" is not so prevalent here.”
“If you own an HD650 and want a somewhat brighter, more expansive sound, this is worth a try for sure. ..."
But as you can tell, there is a ton of different information going around. What's true is something we will find out only when many more people will have had time to test them and do thorough and more detailed comparisons to other headphones.
Point 2 is the only one I disagree with. The matte on the 6XX (and 4XX, and whatever else it’s spewed into by now) feels incredibly cheap compared to a good gloss. It’s thin and extremely flat color. It also doesn’t hide the dimples in the mold for the headband detents like the thickly glossed originals do.
My bigger issue, moreso than the matte looking cheap, is that is doesn’t wear as well long term. Matte finishes (on anything) spot gloss (and do so more easily than a good gloss scratches or dulls) and are impossible to level back out without respraying the whole thing. With a gloss, even if it does get dinged up, you can re-polish if it’s not major and everything looks great again. You can wipe off fingerprints. You can’t get rid of glossy spots.
Of course, a lot of people seem to like it. It’s inarguably cheaper, which I’m sure is great in Massdrop’s eyes, so as long as it’s not panned by more than just me, it’ll continue for those that like it.
The 6XX started in the EXACT same way. Everyone just jumped on it because it was the first of its kind from Sennheiser. No reason to not trust massdrop on this, if you're gonna trust them on the 6XX.. AFAIK they haven't changed anything except the numbers printed onto the 6XX's.
The 6XX was pretty much a HD650 in different livery. It has years of user reviews and widespread exposure.
The HD58X is a supposedly new driver with like 3 reviews and all of them seem to be on pre-production review units.
Trust is a big word to throw around lightly, especially as this isn't just changed numbers/paint. I don't think it's fair to say they started in the exact same way.
Thing is, iirc, no one really knew that until after they were released! The HD58X are tried and true, and this is seems to be rebuilt on the 660s platform. I'm trusting MD with this like I would've on the first 6XX drop, if only I pulled the trigger last time.. :(
They’re a new driver. Sennheiser has said this is the entry to the 6 line. That would imply the superiority of the 600/650/6XX/660S. With the 660S being better (per Sennheiser at least) there’s no reason to assume this is in any way that driver. This is also not a 580 driver (which was 300 ohm).
It is not tried and true. It may very well be something you won’t like and there’s no easy direct comparison to make as it is still an unknown. The skepticism is very much justified. That’s not to say Sennheiser will spit out junk here, but it may well be something people won’t like.
The 6XX has been called essentially a rebranded 650 from the start. Prior to the initial run, that had not been confirmed, but it was pretty commonly stated that’s what we’d get, in similar fashion to the 7XX. This is more akin to the 4XX, which was also touted as a new driver, which also raised many questions.
I’m not saying the 660S is superior. I’m just relating Sennheiser‘s claims to this setup. Sennheiser will tell you the 660S is their evolution on the past models. They also said that this is an intro to the 6 line. When you look at the two things together, it says this is not a 660S at a low price.
That‘s the only point I’m trying to make. The 6XX, regardless of how the 660S performs, should be a better choice than a 58X if that intro claim holds up.