Sennheiser HD 800 S Reference Headphone

If you’re a life-long audiophile, then you’d probably agree that having a great set of headphones is incredibly important.

AND you’re likely willing to pay the price for it — as long as they live up to your expectations.


What if I told you, there was a pair of headphones that could bring you into the recording studio, breaking down that barrier of microphone and headset?

Well, today I want to share with you the remarkable and beautifully designed, Sennheiser HD 800 S open-back design headphones.

Sennheiser HD 800 S Reference Headphones - 6

With 70 years of experience in the professional sound industry, Sennheiser rarely puts out a less than great product. You can feel they’re motto (“The Pursuit of Perfect Sound”) shine through in their products.

Let’s dive right in…

A Detailed and Dynamic Design

Learning from their great success on the previous version, the HD 800, Sennheiser implemented some of the same great design and ergonomic engineering into the HD 800 S modes.

Here’s the break down.

Hand-Crafted in Germany

Germany is somewhat known for their experience in the world of technological advancement — especially in the audio industry. Using a combination of hand-crafted processes and some of the best production technology, Sennheiser consistently outputs a quality product.

800 S Made In Germany

Will get into more details further down, but as a quick overview, the HD 800 S headphones are constructed of high-class matte black parts, one of the biggest transducer in the industry, hand crafted ear pads, a metal headband and high precision headphone connectors.

Ergonomically Designed for Comfort

When it came to designing the HD 800 S, they not only considered the quality of sound, but took great pains to ensure that you, the user would have a comfortable experience.

Sennheiser HD 800 S Reference Headphones Cushions

In fact, there are THREE features that contribute to your listening comfort:

Perfectly Shaped Ear Cups

800 HD S Ear CupsThe ear cups are designed out of a special material called Leona, which is a very light, non-resonant material. This material not only enhances the sound, but is also very strong while providing a comfortable listening experience.

 

Vibration Free Headband

Sennheiser once again get’s bonus points for it’s durable designs, something they are known for. The HD 800 S is made with a metalband and surrounded by resonance dampening polymers giving it’s unique vibration free benefit. Vibrations are not something you want distracting you.

Extreme Comfort Cushions

To top it all off, these open-back headphones are made with some extremely comfortable microfiber ear cushions ensuring that you enjoy hours of annoyance free listening time.

Behind the HD 800 S Sound Quality

I’d like to take a moment and see what’s behind the great sounds quality of the HD 800 S models.

Like many manufacturers, Sennheiser has implemented some proprietary technology into many of their products — the HD 800 S did not get left out.

Introducing….

the patented Ring Radiator Transducer

Ring Radiator Transducer HD 800 SThe Ring Radiator transducer was actually first seen in the HD 800 model where it performed very well. This technology is truly innovative at it’s core.

In fact, this 56 millimeter diameter drive is one of the largest drivers to EVER be used in a pair of dynamic headphones. In most traditional drivers, you’ll only find that the transducer makes the use of only one contact point. This helps bring down potential distortion by keeping the oscillating surface in check.

 

But, with the 800 HD S, the engineering team have actually implemented TWO contact points on either side of the ring. A 42 mm magnet structure actually drives the 40 mm aluminum voice coil.

All of these features combined, gives the 800 HD S a remarkable performance. The transducer is also surrounded by stainless steal adding to the quality and durability.

An Open-Back Architectural Design

If you’re looking for a noise isolating experience, then the 800 HD S are likely not going to be your first choice. Because of their open-back design, they do let exterior and environmental sounds in.

Sennheiser HD 800 S Reference Headphones Review

But, as you may already know, the disadvantage of open-back in those areas, shines bright in other areas.

With the open back design you allows you to experience superb sound clarity, high resolution and a satisfying dynamic experience.

Sennheiser HD 800 S Reference Headphones

Combine this with the specially angled transducers and Sennheiser’s patented absorber technology (which was first implemented in the previous version) and you get a unique sound that provides a wide and open listening experience while keeping those hi and low frequency ranges in check — giving a balanced, yet exceptional sound.

Pro-Tip: The Patented Absorber technology is actually pretty cool and work on the knowledge that most of us can’t distinguish hi and low frequencies at the same time. By absorbing the energy of resonance and eliminating the “masking effect,” the human ear is now able to distinguish more detail.

In a word?

These Sennheiser 800 HS S achieves a studio quality sound that is simply natural, clear and true.

Balance Cable

balanced cable 800 HD S ReviewWhen you order the 800 HD S, you’ll find a balanced cable included. They are also removable from the head set, making storing and replacement much easier. In fact, one of the great features of this cable system is that they provide such high connectivity options. Now with two connection leads (the 6.3mm connected and a 4 pin XLR), you’ll be able to use a headphone amplifier to get even better audio.

A Protective Case?

From what I’ve seen, there doesn’t seem to be any protective case. There are two ways to look at this.

These are considered an in-studio audio headset and therefore will stay next to you computer or other audio equipment. And considering the open back feature, this is a fair argument.
However, considering the price point of these headphones, it would be nice to have something to keep them in — even if it’s just for moving or storing.

Pros & Cons

Pros

High-end Engineering and High quality build
Superb Sound Stage
Improvement over the HD 800 Version

Cons

Some consider the price too high for the value
Bass is good, but not great if you’re super picky about your bass audio

Technical Specifications

Conclusion

In wrapping this up…YES, these are a bit expensive. But as one user implied: Many people spend this much money on a computer that is outdated within a few years — but having a good pair of headphones like the 800 HD S is well worth it.


The Sennheiser 800 HD S proves to provide a very clear and open sound and really have the potential to bring the detail of that bass guitar or the high clear notes of that harp right into the room.

If you’re serious about music (AKA, you’re an audiophile…then these are a great investment.)

Sennheiser HD 8 DJ Headphone Review

I think you’ll agree with me when I say:

As a DJ, your headphones are one of the most important pieces of equipment on the job!

What if there was a pair of headphones that could withstand the rigors of every night use, is made specifically for the DJ community and is made to keep you comfortable at the same time?

In this DJ headphone review, I’m going to layout the features of one of the highest rated DJ headphones — the Sennheiser HD 8 DJ Headphones.

HD8 DJ Heaphones Review Sennheiser

It’s time for you to take “Control of the Club!”

Sennheiser has been in headphone game for a while now.

Why is this important?

Simply because they have years of knowledge and technology to bring to any new product they develop. As a company that is well versed in the audio scene, they knew that they needed to start with a super crazy durable design for the DJ audience.


The HD 8’s are one of the first, if the not the very first headphones that are specifically tuned for DJ use by Sennheiser. While the HD 25’s have been used by DJ’s out in the field, that is not what they we’re specifically designed for.

Note: Hopefully in the future, we’ll put out a HD8 vs HD7 article.

A Super Durable Design

Taking their queue from some of the best DJ’s in the world, Sennheiser developed the HD 8 DJ Over-Ear Headphones to withstand the rigors of daily, professional use for years to come.

That’s one reason why the engineering team made these with a…

Metal Machined Architecture Design

What makes the HD 8 DJ Headphones so durable is the strategically placed machined metal reinforcement parts throughout. Not only does this help with the durability — but it actually has a positive affect on the sound quality.

HD8 DJ Headphones Durable Review

But it doesn’t stop with the machined metal…

Even the plastic parts you find on this set are made of a high quality material.

In addition, the headband material is covered in a thick layer of rubber… giving you an even more comfortable experience.

With all these added features for durability, you might think these would look like a tank. But the design team at Sennheiser developed the HD 8 DJ headphones to not only uphold to the rigors of use — but look fantastic and very ergonomically.

Side Note: These may fit a bit snuggly. Depending on your situation, this could be a positive or a negative. For a DJ, it’s a good things as you don’t want anything to fall off while on the job.

Check out this Video review by LinusTechTips!

Soft Headphone Comfort

When you’re a DJ, it’s pretty important that you’re also comfortable. One of the most important aspects of a pair of headphone are whether or not your ears hurt after a long time of use.

Well, you don’t need to worry about that. The Sennheiser HD 8 DJ headphones are designed with very soft, yet durable headphone cushions with a elliptical design giving you a great fit and should remain comfortable throughout your event.

HD8 DJ Heaphones Velour Leatherette Pads Review

It’s like a pillow for your ears!

But wait… there’s a bonus.

Sennheiser also includes Velour pads that you can switch out with their standard leatherette cushions. One particular reviewer with the Velour pads said he got even better comfort AND audio quality.

Another review mentioned that these sit quite well around the neck area as well. Having worked in the wedding industry a while, I know that DJs have to pause and talk to people quite a bit.

Now that we’ve covered how insanely strong and comfortable these guys are…let’s get more specific.

This is where Sennheiser really has the DJ in mind.

Introducing…

…. the 210 Degree Flexibility

This is a features that you’re going to LOVE!

HD8 DJ Heaphones 210 Degree Pivot Prices

As a DJ, you have a lot of multitasking to do. With the 210 degree swivel joints (which by the way are also made of metal), you’ll be able to monitor your track and make adjustments on the fly that much easier.

This is truly a feature you don’t want to be without as a DJ

The Twist Lock Connection Cable

These headphone come with not one, but TWO twist lock connection headphone kevlar enforced cords. These two options give you the freedom to pick what style you want:

  • A coiled, stretchable 1.5m audio cable for a 3.5mm jack — giving you flexibility up to 3.0m. This cable is a singled sided coiled cable that can actually be connected to either headphone depending on your preference.
  • A standard, straight for regular use playback which also comes in at 3.0m and 3.5mm jack. It can also be connected into either right or left earphone cup.

HD8 DJ Heaphone Cables Coil Design

You’ll also receive a 6.3mm adaptor plug for more flexibility.

Signature Sennheiser Sound Reproduction with GREAT beat matching!

Let’s not forget one of the most important aspects of these headphones — the proprietary acoustics system that Sennheiser is so well known for!

The Pursuit of Perfect Sound

Paired with a design that is perfect for DJs, the sounds comes through clear even in environments with background noise. The engineering team specifically designed these headphones to play at a high and loud SPL (up to 115DB), giving you a great experience even in a louder background environment.

Not only this..

but when you combine it with the high noise isolation technology you’re able to hears your music tracks in even better in the noisy environments like parties and weddings.

The Sennheiser HD 8 DJ Headphones give you a satisfying 95 Ohm impedance making it compatible with most DJ equipment.

You’ll also enjoy a perfect beat matching experience that is able to deliver a good quality at almost every range. It’s overall sounds is said to be well rounded and makes those bass notes sound pretty good. Listening to them over a length of time also provides a great experience.

Pro tip: Want to take this to the next level? Be sure to try it with a DAC and headphone amplifier.

Long Lasting Use

The Sennheiser HD 8 DJ headphones also come with a solid protective case. While this may take up a bit more room in your DJ equipment, they are actually not a bad size and for the amount of money you’re spending it may be a good idea to keep them protected.

HD8 DJ Heaphone Durable Hard Case

The design team really believe in the construction of these DJ headphones, as they included a two year warranty. That’s great news for any buyer!

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Ergonomically designed – Fits the head great!
  • DJ design specific
  • Great noise isolation

Cons

  • Can be a bit snug

HD8 DJ Specs

Technical Specs
Impedance 95 Ohm
Frequency Response 8 - 30 000 Hz
Sound pressure level (SPL) 115 dB
THD Total Harmonic Distortion <0.1%
Transducer Principle dynamic closed
Ear coupling circumaural
Jack Plug 3.5mm straight
Cable Length coiled 1.5m-3.0 - straight 3.0m
Weight w/o cable 10 Ounces
Warranty 2 Years

Should I Buy These?

In wrapping this up, there is ONE thing I want to point out.

These headphones are some of the highest rated for the DJ industry.

In fact: There aren’t a ton of products out there that have so many 5 star reviews in relation to 1 star reviews. Even the one star Sennheiser HD 8 DJ reviews I saw wouldn’t convince many people not to get them. Perhaps, that’s why one reviewer said it was the “BMW of Headphones.”


At the end of the day, Sennheiser really delivered with the HD 8 DJ headphones. They took what they were good at (great audio) and paired it  with the knowledge and experience of professional DJs.

The result?

A fantastic sound and VERY durable headset that has been said to be the best over-all DJ headphones.

If you’re on the fence…it’s time to make the leap.