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The Sennheiser HD 558 and HD 598 headphones are similar in many ways. However there are a few differences that set them apart. Overall, I would choose the 598s due to the better sound quality and comfort. If you can find a pair of 558s that are significantly cheaper than the 598s, they are a great option if cost is important. However, if they are a similar price, there’s no reason to choose the 558s over the 598s.
Head to Head
Both of the headphones are open-back. As the name suggests, this means they are “open” and air can travel freely through the ear cups. In terms of sound, open-back headphones sound more airy, clear, and natural compared with closed back headphones.
Although both the HD 558 and HD 598 are open-back, there are some subtle differences. The HD 598s have a wider soundstage and have more clarity and detail. The highs and mids are also more prominent. The HD 558s have a smaller soundstage, don’t have the same clarity, and the bass is slightly more prominent. Overall, the 598s are the winner in terms of sound quality.
Both the HD 558s and HD 598s have removable cables. This is excellent when it comes to the lifespan of the headphones because if the cable breaks you can cheaply replace it.
In terms of the build quality, there isn’t much that separates them. They are both well built from strong plastic. They’re not really designed with portability in mind though, so don’t be too rough with them. As long as you treat them reasonable well, both headphones should have a long lifespan.
Both headphones are very comfortable. One of the reasons is because of the open-back design. Air can freely get into them allowing your ears to breathe and not get too stuffy.
Both headphones have nice padded ear cups and don’t clamp too tightly on your head. The 598s are slightly more comfortable than the 558s but they’re quite similar.
Features & Accessories
The HD 598s come with two cables (detachable and one comes with a mic): A 3m cable with a 6.3mm jack and a 1.2m cable with a 3.5mm jack and microphone.
The HD 558s only comes with one cable (no mic, but it is a detachable cable). It is a long 3m cable with a 1/4 inch jack (1/8 inch adaptor included.) This might not be problem, but if you want a shorter cable, it will mean another investment.
Unlike the 598s, the 558s don’t come with a mic. However you can convert them into a headset with the mod mic if you need one.
In terms of portability, there isn’t much of a difference between them, however neither of these headphones are designed to be portable.
One reason they’re not great for portability is that they don’t fold and are quite bulky with large ear cups. Secondly, the open-back design means they don’t block outside noise so they’re not very good for using on public transport or in noisy environments.
Also, the 558s only come with a 3m cable which isn’t great for when you’re on the go. The 598s at least come with a smaller cable, however they’re still not the best for portability.
The HD 558s are supposed to be the more budget friendly option, however I’ve found that they seem to be selling for around the same price as the 598s. If you can find some 558s significantly cheaper than 598s, they are a good option, but if they are a similar price, I would 100% go with the 598s.
|Sennheiser HD558 Audiophile Headphones with an Internal Surround Reflector||$149.00||Buy on Amazon|
|Sennheiser HD 598 SR Open-Back Headphone "Discontinued by manufacturer"||$200.00||Buy on Amazon|
Last update on 2022-09-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API