Born in the 1980s, as house music became a phenomenon, Sennheiser’s iconic HD 25s are widely considered to be the industry standard for DJ headphones. More than three decades later, in 2018, the German brand continues to produce these famous cans, which are just as useful for studio monitoring and mixing as they are in the DJ booth. The ‘Plus’ set promises a little extra for your money – let’s see exactly what’s in store…
Although there have been several iterations, the fundamental design of the HD 25s hasn’t changed much since the eighties, although they have constantly been improved to ensure better stability, flexibility and comfort. This new pair retains the lightweight, slimline design with a splayed, padded headband. The closed-back earcups feature an on-ear design, with well-cushioned soft synthetic leatherette earpads, leading to a very comfortable fit for long periods of time.
There is adjustability in this pair, although this is a feature of the movable earcups themselves, as opposed to a moveable headband. This adjustable cup also rotates to allow for single-ear listening. As for aesthetics, there’s nothing bad to say – very clean and sophisticated, with an all-black matte construction and minimal branding. Solid.
This is a good pair of phones in terms of specs, offering a wide frequency range of 16Hz to 22kHz, allowing for accurate monitoring. Made with lightweight aluminum voice coils, there is an impedance of 70 ohms for good flexibility. They come fitted with a detachable single-sided steel cable which feels very robust, with a 1/8” (3.5mm) jack (a 1/4” adapter is included).
We mentioned that the Sennheiser HD 25 Plus set comes with a few extras. These include a very good HardBody Pro travel case from Slappa, with a sturdy rubberized build and soft velveteen lining, which is a handy addition for DJs on the move. The Plus set also comes with an extra cable and extra ear pads.
Ultimately, the HD 25s are a pleasure to wear, with a light construction and snug fit, that go a long way to blocking out pretty much all external noise, which is great for use in a busy studio, or even while travelling. They can handle high sound pressure levels (up to 120dB), so working in noisy environments is this pair’s forte. We haven’t even talked about the sound quality, which is clear and natural – not as transparent as some of the others in this region, but still very good.
There are probably better studio headphones under $200 in terms of the flattest response, but for great overall sound quality, excellent noise isolation, and exceptional design and comfort, the Sennheiser HD 25s are a very strong shout. For both DJs and studio producers, this is one set of cans well worth considering.