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New version of Sennheiser HD 560S (!)

Robbo99999

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I should have said 'I perceived distortion', which could mean snything, or nothing. Thanks for taking measurements.
Do you still have the "new version" HD560s? If you're a Harman fan you could reverse engineer the measured changes that solderdude has noted. In other words, you'd use an Oratory EQ, but then add the opposite filters to those described in my following post:
So you'd do the following to add onto a standard Oratory EQ:
High Shelf 1200Hz, +1dB, Q0.707
High Shelf 3500Hz, +2dB, Q0.707
Low Shelf 70Hz, -2dB, Q0.707

Doing that would theoretically give you Harman Curve when added to Oratory's EQ which I'm thinking is largely based on the old version of HD560s. Of course we're building in more innacuracies here because it's just one unit measured from solderdude, and I've just eyeballed his graphs to create that rough EQ conversion, but still.
 

solderdude

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That is a nice evolution if such a filter isn't necessary anymore, maybe they read your reviews? ;):cool:

The newer HD560S still needs a filter but one that only addresses the 5kHz peak.
hd560s-2022-filter-schematic-1-1.png

Perfectly usable without the need for EQ.
 

Robbo99999

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It looks like the sound did change after all.
Got a new version in (with the shorter cable) and it is indeed different so the subjective reports of less clarity seem correct.
No idea why the product manager did not know about this.
View attachment 314152
It looks like the newer version has also had changes to the driver as the frequency response is slightly more extended in the lows and the treble above 4kHz is an (audible) 3dB lower in level compared to the original version.
It could do with a little less lower treble (4-7kHz) but the upper treble did not really need to be lowered.
Hi All (& hi solderdude, we've DM'd recently about this so you're already aware of my results), so I decided to buy the new version of the HD560s with the shorter cable and have measured it in comparison to my 3 units of the old version of the HD560s, and basically I've come up with a similar trend as solderdude noticed. In fact I've measured 2 units of the new version because the first unit had not particularly good channel balance which I noticed during listening first & then during measuring, so that unit went back to Amazon and they sent out a replacement which sounds pretty much bang on re channel balance and also measures reasonably well for channel balance, so I'm keeping that one.

Ok, so to keep it relatively short & sweet at the start of the post here's the main takeaway of the results: the new version is tilted down in frequency response above 1kHz in comparison to the old version, and has just a tad small more bass, so following is the old version vs new version (old version is an average of 3 units, new version is an average of 2 units) (note that these are measurements done on a miniDSP EARS rig so they look different to solderdudes & different to Amirs, but we're interested in comparative differences between the measurements I did, for which this is still valid):
Difference between Old Version & New Version:
HD560s New Version (from 2 units) vs Old Version (from 3 units).jpg


So the upshot of this is that indeed the new version sounds different to the old version, and the new version does sound better balanced than the old version when used without EQ. The new version does indeed have softer pads than the old version, easily noticeable, but the negative of this is that there's a bit less room in the earcup for your ears (because they compress more) - so I found it harder to position the headphone so that my ears weren't touching, because in the old version the pads don't compress so much so there's a bit more room in the earcups for your ears (on the old version my ears don't touch at all, and on the new version I have to place it very carefully to avoid touching & sometimes there's always very slight light touching).

Given that the new version is different to the old version I thought it would be quite useful if I created an EQ that would enable owners of the new version to apply to change their new version into the old version, which means that if you do that then Oratory EQ's will be more accurate for you, because most (maybe all) of Oratory's measurements will have been based on the old version. So the idea is you'll apply both my following EQ on top of Oratory's EQ, following is my EQ to change new version into old version:
EQ to change New Version into Old Version:
Note that the first filter (HSQ) is a High Shelf Filter
HD560s New Version to Old Version EQ.jpg

Note: there is a small difference in bass here that I've not corrected for, primarily because it's a small difference & bass level has proven to be personal preference (from Harman Research), but also because I think Oratory's HD560s bass measurement is potentially showing a bit more bass on average than I perceive (vs my other headphones in my experience) so I decided to not correct for it as I think the HD560s benefits from a tad more bass in the EQ than Oratory's measurements suggest (by literally just 1dB, which is the difference we see in this measurement anyway).

So that's the main thrust of the post so far, and following are just some titbits.
Following is the channel balance seen in my first unit of the New Version, not all that much different in measurement but noticeably shifted to the right during listening on voices, this is the unit I sent back:
HD560s Unit 4 New Version Channel Balance.jpg
Following is the Channel Balance of the second unit of the New Version, and this is the one I decided to keep & I don't really notice any channel balance issues with the following one:
HD560s Unit5 New Version Channel Balance.jpg
Following is showing the average of Unit 1 & average of Unit 2 of the New Version, showing that "overall" unit to unit variation within the New Version is good (albeit of course only 2 units measured, and noticeable channel balance issue in the first unit as previously discussed):
HD560s New Version Unit1 and Unit2 aligned at 300Hz.jpg

Further possible work: I may compare in detail the difference solderdude saw between old & new version vs what I saw between old & new version by digitising his plots and analysing & comparing it in detail vs mine, but to be honest I can see that the general trend is the same, and given that we have both measured different units then of course there will be some unit to unit variation that can explain away some of the smaller differences anyway, so may not be a particularly useful piece of further work to do (which is probably why I haven't bothered doing it yet!). Either way, both me & solderdude know & can see that there has been a change between the old version & the new version with the new version having less treble (tilted down from 1kHz, and just a tad more bass).

Last footnote: following graph is showing New Version converted to a GRAS style measurement and compared against Harman Curve, but take this with a pinch of salt because I've converted it based on measuring 3 units of old version on my miniDSP EARS rig and comparing that against Oratory's measurement which is based mainly on old version and then applying an "EQ/difference" between the two which converts approximately my miniDSP EARS measurement of the New Version into a GRAS measurement, it's approximate as it assumes that the 3 units of the old version I measured are similar or close to the units that Oratory measured, so grain of salt!
New Version (average of 2 units) converted to GRAS style measurement vs Harman Curve Target:
HD560s New Version AVG converted to GRAS (myOldAVG to OraAVG).jpg
And for comparison to above graph, following is latest Oratory measurement vs Harman
Latest Oratory Measurement vs Harman:
HD560s Oratory 27.08.23 vs Harman.jpg


EDIT: if you have any questions, then please ask, and particularly if you want clarification on how to apply what I've shown here into an EQ that makes the Oratory EQ more valid for owners of the New Version.

Personal Note: I wanted to buy this latest version of HD560s as I wanted a headphone that was more usable at stock without EQ, and in my listening this has born out to be the case, so I'm pleased I bought the new version (to go along with my other units of old version, lol). So far though haven't managed to get an EQ on the new version that rivals my best EQ for the old version, so old version is my preference when able to use EQ, but may experiment more with EQ'ing the new version.
 
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Qaz

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gymnastic for plastic fantastic
20231015_180348.jpg

Cheap materials, very plastic, toyish. Good headband design for kids without heads. On lowest setting while close, those pads doesn't touch each other. When I move headband up the bottom parts of the pads are starting to push each other as headband is so curved. Clamping force isn't skull crashing, but it definitely contributes to more sweaty experience.
 

solderdude

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Agreed on the plastic cheapish feel of this HD5** line.
It scratches quickly too.
But ... it can take some abuse and sounds quite good for its price class.
 

Robbo99999

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gymnastic for plastic fantastic
View attachment 319069
Cheap materials, very plastic, toyish. Good headband design for kids without heads. On lowest setting while close, those pads doesn't touch each other. When I move headband up the bottom parts of the pads are starting to push each other as headband is so curved. Clamping force isn't skull crashing, but it definitely contributes to more sweaty experience.
Stop iiiittt! (I'm certain I'm gonna report you to RSPHp - in other words the Royal Society for Protection of Headphones!)

(and for the record such gymnastics have nothing to do with this being the new version of the headphone, which is the purpose of this thread - so I don't appreciate your random headphone abuse, even if there is some humour in there, I'm not being entirely serious, but just barely semi serious)

On a serious note I've got a large head and the clamping force of HD560s is A-OK, very comfortable headphone, and they don't noticeably slacken over time so they won't become loose......but again this has nothing to do with the new version of this headphone which is the purpose of this thread.
 
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Qaz

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@solderdude
Yes, it's not so easy to stretch them as this plastic is really elastic. I'm not so much concerned about durability, scratches nor how pretty they are. Probably over 10 years ago I bought Takstar HI2050 that had solid, rigid plastic, some metal parts and plushy pads. They costed me around $60 and now they would cost me $50. I had a feeling that I'm dealing with a quality headphone, because materials used where decent unlike HD560S. Build materials/cost are disappointing, except for cable. Cable is very good in newer version.

@Robbo99999
Yeah it looks pretty random as I wanted to write a little more and I cut it short.

If OK means very comfortable, than it seems that it's a very broad term. There is plenty of topics about excessive clamping force and I don't even have big head. With a little stretching they are now very comfortable for me. Pls don't call RSPHp. I will not abuse them anymore.

What is your EQ preset for older version and what do you think is missing in newer version?
 

Robbo99999

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What is your EQ preset for older version and what do you think is missing in newer version?
For old version I basically use Oratory EQ and then apply a -1.25dB linear slope to the whole thing: three High Shelf Filters at 63Hz / 632Hz / 6324Hz of Q0.5 each one being -0.417dB. Those 3 parametric filters create a near perfect linear tone control. I also have another EQ I use that is again the Oratory EQ but with 1dB more bass and a couple of other changes above 1kHz using his user customisation filters. I flip between the two as I can't quite decide which one is the best. For the newer version I've not been able to get the EQ as good so far, I'm finding I'm not able to get quite the same bass definition and detail, but not put much time into that one. New Version does sound better at stock than the Old Version though, and that's why I bought the New Version.
 

Phorize

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Do you still have the "new version" HD560s? If you're a Harman fan you could reverse engineer the measured changes that solderdude has noted. In other words, you'd use an Oratory EQ, but then add the opposite filters to those described in my following post:
So you'd do the following to add onto a standard Oratory EQ:
High Shelf 1200Hz, +1dB, Q0.707
High Shelf 3500Hz, +2dB, Q0.707
Low Shelf 70Hz, -2dB, Q0.707

Doing that would theoretically give you Harman Curve when added to Oratory's EQ which I'm thinking is largely based on the old version of HD560s. Of course we're building in more innacuracies here because it's just one unit measured from solderdude, and I've just eyeballed his graphs to create that rough EQ conversion, but still.
I've offered to send mine to @oratory1990 but he's no doubt busy with everything.
 

solderdude

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He would find similar differences as Robboo and I did so the suggested EQ changes from Robbo will likely be very similar to what Oratory will suggest.

I found only lowering the 5kHz peak a little was making the new version sound very good subjectively.
 

DarrylG

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Drivers are usually made in batches and then checked for response. It is possible that those 2 drivers (from different batches) matched well and why these 2 were selected.

At least part of the difference in treble might be resolved with the Poyatu pads. Chances are, when new pads are ordered from Sennheiser you might get a 'new' pad.


I can't guarantee that Poyatu pads from the past are the same as the current pads: Look for HD559 pads.
I assume these are the original 560s pads, catalog #572287
 

Qaz

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@Robbo99999

Interesting. That's quite exotic preset with 3 high shelf filters and pretty steep slope.

Have you tried swapping pads from older to newer version, and use them with old preset? I ordered POYATU pads to be closer to older version. With EQ preset that you posted earlier, transforming them into old one, they also sounded tonally off to me. Not 100% bad as there was a little good stuff too.

Right now I'm using Oratory preset. In pdf there are few interesting notes like this one: "Adjust gain of band 5 to preference (timbre accuracy)". A little shouty region for me, so I lowered it from 2.3dB to 0.3dB and now it's calmer.
 

solderdude

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I have reason to believe it is not only different pads.
One of the reasons is swapping pads between old and new and the Poyatu pads.

One thing is clear... the sound did change.
The new one sounds good with just a little 5kHz reduction (just like HD58X and HD660S needs)

I assume these are the original 560s pads, catalog #572287

I would not trust e-bay if I wanted original pads but rather buy them from Sennheiser directly or one of their official representatives.
These might be real, they might not be.
 

Phorize

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All of the above points to the importance of having the ability to peq live and by ear IMO. There must be loads of people using the off the shelf settings from autoeq etc based on the old version on the new version thinking 'this doesn't sound good!'.
 

Robbo99999

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I've offered to send mine to @oratory1990 but he's no doubt busy with everything.
That's good that you've offered to send it to Oratory, but as Solderdude said I'd expect him to find the same thing that me & solderdude noticed in our measurements - so yes you can use the alterative EQ in my following post to change your headphone from New Version to Old Version before combining it with the Oratory:

All of the above points to the importance of having the ability to peq live and by ear IMO. There must be loads of people using the off the shelf settings from autoeq etc based on the old version on the new version thinking 'this doesn't sound good!'.
Which is also why you can use the EQ I created that changes New Version to Old Version.
 
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Robbo99999

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@Robbo99999

Interesting. That's quite exotic preset with 3 high shelf filters and pretty steep slope.

Have you tried swapping pads from older to newer version, and use them with old preset? I ordered POYATU pads to be closer to older version. With EQ preset that you posted earlier, transforming them into old one, they also sounded tonally off to me. Not 100% bad as there was a little good stuff too.

Right now I'm using Oratory preset. In pdf there are few interesting notes like this one: "Adjust gain of band 5 to preference (timbre accuracy)". A little shouty region for me, so I lowered it from 2.3dB to 0.3dB and now it's calmer.
The idea is that you would use the EQ preset that I posted earlier to transform New Version to Old Version - you'd use that along with the Oratory EQ - so you'd apply both together.

On the seperate topic of the "3 High Shelf Filters" you mention which has got nothing to do with the New Version / Old Version stuff we're talking about - I just literally use those 3 High Shelf Filters in one of my personal EQ's just to tweak the headphone a bit. You say they're "steep", it's not steep at all, the 3 High Shelf Filters I listed simply act as a Linear Tone Control to apply a -1.25dB change from 20Hz to 20kHz - so literally it just lowers 20kHz by -1.25dB in relation to 20Hz, but does it in a linear way accross that whole frequency range - it's not a -1.25dB per octave change (it's not per octave!).

Re pad swaps, I haven't tried swapping pads around, but solderdude has already done that work if you look earlier in the thread - he found the softer pads that are now included in the New Version of the HD560s are what is causing the majority of the differences, but he also found it was a different dust mesh and potentially a different driver, but it's mostly the pad.
 

Qaz

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The idea is that you would use the EQ preset that I posted earlier to transform New Version to Old Version - you'd use that along with the Oratory EQ - so you'd apply both together.
That idea was already explained by you, so I don't need future explanation.

On the seperate topic of the "3 High Shelf Filters" you mention which has got nothing to do with the New Version / Old Version stuff we're talking about
Oh no, so I'm not 100% on a topic with every single letter? Shame on me.

You say they're "steep", it's not steep at all, the 3 High Shelf Filters I listed simply act as a Linear Tone Control to apply a -1.25dB change from 20Hz to 20kHz - so literally it just lowers 20kHz by -1.25dB in relation to 20Hz, but does it in a linear way accross that whole frequency range - it's not a -1.25dB per octave change (it's not per octave!).
I said that the slope itself is steep, but if it's not per octave it's definitely not steep. Apology for offending your slope.

Re pad swaps, I haven't tried swapping pads around, but solderdude has already done that work if you look earlier in the thread - he found the softer pads that are now included in the New Version of the HD560s are what is causing the majority of the differences, but he also found it was a different dust mesh and potentially a different driver, but it's mostly the pad.
I looked, and that's why I ordered Poyatu pads, because they make the biggest difference as you concluded it yourself.
 

Robbo99999

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That idea was already explained by you, so I don't need future explanation.


Oh no, so I'm not 100% on a topic with every single letter? Shame on me.


I said that the slope itself is steep, but if it's not per octave it's definitely not steep. Apology for offending your slope.


I looked, and that's why I ordered Poyatu pads, because they make the biggest difference as you concluded it yourself.
I'm not arguing with you, so don't pretend that I am. I think you understand the slope correctly now for the 3 High Shelf Filters I used in my personal EQ, they don't create a steep slope, but yeah it's got nothing to do with the New Version / Old Version nature of this thread.

Re Poyatu pads, if your pads aren't worn on your New Version HD560s, and you're just getting them so that the headphone sounds closer to the Old Version HD560s then instead it's probably simpler & more accurate just to the use the transformative EQ I posted earlier that converts New Version to Old Version; however, if you want the slightly extra space for your ears then the harder pad could be worth it, but instead it's a lot easier just to use EQ to convert from New Version to Old Version if we're assuming you're applying EQ anyway.
 
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Qaz

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@Robbo99999

What a beautiful dumpster fire. You clearly have some anger issue, so I will not bother explaining anything at this point. I don't pretend at all. I see how you type to others. There is a lot of crying on your keyboard.
 
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