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Microphone Month 3

Sennheiser HD 280 Pro Closed-back Studio and Live Monitoring Headphones Reviews

4.5 stars based on 20 customer reviews
Questions about the Sennheiser HD 280 Pro Closed-back Studio and Live Monitoring Headphones?

Questions about the Sennheiser HD 280 Pro Closed-back Studio and Live Monitoring Headphones?

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  • from Williamstown, NJ May 8, 2017

    My "answer" to the MIX problem!

    Awesome. That's the only word I would use to describe these headphones. For the price, they can't be beat, and with a freq. response of 8hz - 25Khz, you can be sure that NOTHING in your audible range is deadened by cheap microphones.

    I am a musician (guitars, Electric & acoustic, 6&7 string, Bass, Keyboards, Mandolin, name it) for almost 50 years, and a home recording maniac. Short Story; Using Live 9, Scarlett 2i2 USB for recording and mixing was ideal for me since I'm NOT "flush" but mixing/mastering and reviewing through an old Onkyo stereo, then taking a burn disk to my car stereo, wife's car stereo, and home theater system was driving me nuts! No matter how "basic" I made the EQ's on the players, the resut always left something flat, or overdone, or just NOT RIGHT. I went to headphones DIRECT out of the 2i2, and that helped, until I realized I was still HORRIBLY limited on the response of the 2 cheap Sony sets I had. One so bad, everything sounded like MUD. They werre NOT THAT cheap (price) either.

    I talked to my Sweetwater rep (Doctor DAVE WALENT!) who also does home digital recording, and told him I didn't have much wampum to spend and what could he recommend. He pointed me to these babies! I am now happily mix/mastering and making my songs come out RIGHT and with excellent range on ALL systems (considering their own EQ settings) and I couldn't be happier with them. WHEN... I become rich and famous I might make a higher priced move, but they'd have to be substantially better than the HD280Pro for me to even consider it, and that's a stretch. You can't go wrong with these babies, and I know how to LISTEN HARD! I've heard a million mixes, the good the bad and the ugly. As for the "not so attractive" looks of this set? I am NOT a DJ so when I have them on, I can't see them! And I don't care! Even if I was, "The sound is what matters."

  • from Camano Island, WA April 19, 2017Music Background:
    Former full time professional now occasional


    They were so much louder and reproduced everything with so much detail I thought that some thing was wrong, that someone had turned all of my equipment all the way up. I was using Audio Technica closed back that I had purchased around ten years ago. I liked them but the contrast was amazing.

  • from April 15, 2017

    Amazingly clear

    These headphones have more of a flat sound profile so they aren't geared towards heavy low end "thump" but the clarity is off the charts! If you don't believe me plug a pair in and listen to a recording of your favorite singer song writer with an acoustic guitar and you will have no more doubts. You will hear things in music you never hear there before. As for mixing you would be hard pressed to find a better pair at this price point. Perfect for a home studio and just listening to music alike.

  • from El Paso February 2, 2017Music Background:
    Singer, Guitarist, Bassist, Songwriter

    Expected Good, Got Awesome

    There are a lot of good reviews. No actually, there are a lot of GREAT reviews on these headphones for a reason. When I bought these I was expecting to get good headphones.But they're honestly awesome. For their price range, I was told they're the best. and so far, I haven't been able to prove otherwise.

    1. They're very comfortable. I've almost fallen asleep wearing them.
    2. They're pretty tough. I've dropped them a couple of times already.
    3. They're versatile. They work great with my tascam 8 track when I'm recording guitar or vocals, my computer when I'm hearing sweetwater gear demos or tracks I've recorded, and my iphone when I'm jamming out.
    4. All the parts are replaceable. So in case something breaks, you can fix it yourself. But, these will last you a long time before you get to that point.
    5. They sound great and flat/balanced. It took me a little getting used to because I've never heard flat sounding speakers or headphones before. BUT NOW, I hear all of the instruments and little things like panning, double tracking, and layering, things that I've never noticed or heard before. These headphones have brought me a new appreciation and perspective to the work people put into making and recording music. Lastly, it does all of this while isolating (not noise cancelling) the music from background noise really well.

    Honestly for the money, you can't go wrong with these.If you're on the fence about buying them, just buy them and save yourself some time from reading a lot of reviews like I did. You'll be glad you did. Plus, sweetwater is awesome to buy/order from.

  • from Indianapolis December 25, 2016Music Background:
    Producer, Guitarist, Bassist and Drummer

    Just bought them.

    Perfect headphones for breaking into the recording world or in your home studio!

  • from New York December 18, 2016Music Background:
    DJ, Producer, Engineer, Pianist


    When I first bought these I put them inside my vocal booth and didn't remove them for almost 2 years. Recently tried using them to mix down a record and wow...They are so revealing and true. I am so impressed with these headphones from Sennheiser that I am now in the market for one of their open back hi end models.

  • from Hollis, NH December 1, 2016Music Background:
    Graduate of MI Hollywood CA, Live/Studio drumming. Live and Studio

    Best in this range

    For audio comparison and "A-B-ing" tests, I own a ATH-M50x, AKG K240, Sennheiser hd650, and Beyerdynamic DT 770 Studio. The K240 and hd650 are open back so not apples to apples. But the 770 and m50X are similar closed back like the HD 280 Pros.

    For my ears the hd650 are amazing, VERY flat, smooth accurate, super detailed, the best for truly accurate listening and mixing. I use them to compare sound of other cans.

    The only closed back sets I have found that are even close in sound to the hd650's are the HD280's. No, they do not sound the same but they have the most natural mid range and hi end of the other two closed back I own. To me the M50x phones are very hyped in the high end and low end, mids seem scooped. The 770's have better mid range and hi end but a tad less low end than the 280's.

    I like the larger ear cups of the HD280's and 770's. The smaller ear cushions on the M50x's are not as comfortable. The M50x's may be better for tracking due the the more pronounced hi end, but for general listing they are to hyped for me...almost harsh.

    As far as tracking with drums, non of these closed back are great at blocking out loud drumming but I find the HD280's a tad better than the 770's and M50x's.

    Between the 3 closed back can's I own the HD280 are the most comfortable. All around if I'm traveling, mixing live etc and can only take one set of can's with me, I always go for the HD280's.

  • from Opelika,AL November 11, 2016Music Background:
    30 years playing guitar

    Great headphones

    Very nice headphones. I got them mainly to listen to my guitar through my Helix and was blown away with the sound quality. They are crystal clear with tight low response. They are also very comfortable. Highly recommend especially for the money.

  • from February 27, 2017

    Great Headphones

    Well designed and sound great. The only reason I didn't give five stars is the coiled chord limits their use to the mixing desk. I'll have to get a different model to use in the rest of the studio.

  • from Panama City, FL January 16, 2017Music Background:
    Sound guy since 1979 (4 channel Realistic!)

    Recent Headphone Purchase

    I recently purchased these headphones to use while using one of our sound boards at church. The amount of attenuation of outside noise is great, but also leads to a tight fit on the head. The flat frequency response is also noticeable and they just sound great with a clean thumping bass all the way to crisp clear cymbals.

  • from Albany Oregon January 3, 2017

    Closed-back studio headphones

    Love the headphones just wish they had the option of changing the cord to both sides of the ears. They sound great and feel good.

  • from December 7, 2016Music Background:

    Sennheiser Review

    These are great! All I hear is what I recorded and I can hear the smallest background sound in any recording. These headphones are a great investment.

  • from Kissimmee, Fl November 21, 2016

    Nice Cans

    Very comfortable headphones, a little tight but they should wear in nicely. They were very compatible w/my Samson SR850's but better at cancelling any outside noise. A nice quality set of cans to last many years. As always Sweetwater's service does excel, thanks James for helping me w/my decision.

  • from NJ March 5, 2017

    Sennheiser Headphones

    Great Flat tone no outside bleed I totally recommend these nice and snug most excellent Monitors.

  • from Texas February 23, 2017

    Almost what I expected..

    PROS: These headphones are great studio and monitoring headphones! You can hear every instrument and voice thanks to their flat frequency response. Great for watching, TV, Netflix, etc., too. Haven't tried them in a guitar amp yet, but I suspect they'd be great for hearing your rig's true sound before coloring added by external speakers.

    CONS: Most glasses wearers will find these too tight, especially for extended sessions. If you're a music listener that likes "boom box" bass response, these are not for you.

  • from January 21, 2017

    Senn hd280

    Great value for price

  • from December 16, 2016

    Great product

    Thank you for the good deal. Awesome headphones! This is my 2nd pair. My first pair lasted since 2005!

  • from December 9, 2016

    Sennheiser HD 280 Pro Monitoring Headphones

    Pros: Great Headphones for drummers. Great sound isolation and very good audio sound quality with impressive low end and full ranges frequency response. Single heavy duty cord with 1/4" and 1/8" interface.
    Great value for the price!

    Cons: Coiled cord is a a hassle, the coil of wire is to heavy hanging from your head and should be a straight cord.

  • from Decatur, TX November 27, 2016Music Background:
    Musician, Recording Engineer

    Good Headphones, but...

    I wanted another pair of monitoring headphones and didn't want to pay the price for another A-T M50x. Based on a couple of reviews I ordered these. They are nice and actually more comfortable than the A-T's. But, that is where the pro's end. The A-T's have much better sound quality, especially with bass quality. The A-T's also seem to be better built. I realize since they are not as expensive as the M50x, I'm not really comparing apples to apples. If you don't want to spend more than 100.00, these will certainly serve you well. However, if you can afford the extra, the A-T's are worth it.

  • from Jones Country, East Texas February 15, 2017Music Background:
    Player of old.


    I am ok with the 280 H/P but they don't have the bass I was wanting by no means, for studio phones I do not see how they can tell how the bass or any other sound comes across. I have taken my bass adjustment and turned it up all the way and the phones never change a bit. Now if someone was over playing in the studio recording you would not hear it in these at all, but I have found a use for them I plug them into my 16 GB MP3 player and mow my grass.

    If you are looking for a set to give you a little foot moving bump then call these guys and ask so you will not have to send them back and forth until you get the ones you like.


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