Sennheiser’s New HD 560S Headphones Bring Open-Backed Clarity to Budget Levels

An open-backed set of Senheiser headphones.

When it comes to headphones and crystal-clear sound, many audiophiles will argue that open-backed headphones are the best choice. But open-backed headphones are notoriously expensive. The new Sennheiser HD 560S looks to solve that problem, to an extent. At $200, they’re still cheaper than a true budget set. But they cost half as much as other examples.

Open-back headphones sound better (in theory) because they prevent pressure build-up in the earcups that can distort sound. Instead, they pass air over the earcups, and you should get a more natural sound.

A side vew of the HD 560S headphones.

They also cost a lot more, often $400 or more. Sennheiser says it found a good middle-ground between great sound and pricing more people can afford.

The company describes the HD 560S headphones as offering “just what is required for analytical listening sessions at an accessible price point: natural and accurate reference sound that divulges every detail, complemented by an outstanding low-frequency extension, while providing a “barely there” experience on the head and ears.”

The headphones should work well for someone in the recording booth that needs to hear the main tune and all the under riding details that complete the entire score. And if you’re the type of person to subscribe to a specific streaming service like TIDAL for higher-quality sound, these are the headphones you want to pair with the music without breaking the bank.

You can preorder the HD 560S today at Sennheiser’s site, and they’ll release on September 29.