I use headphones daily as I work from my home studio and teach music lessons online. The three Sennheiser headphones I’m reviewing here each have their own target user. The HD 200 Pro headphones are a pair for general-listening, the HD 280 Pro are professional studio-quality headphones, and the HD 25 headphones are billed as being task-specific for DJs.

In this review, I will describe the features of each individual model and I will review the construction, comfort, and noise-reducing qualities of each unit. I will also describe my listening experience with each pair and provide observations to best describe the differences in sound quality that I hear as I switch between each model.

This is not a scientific review by any means. However, I created my own version of a “scientific” experiment to help me compare the units. I used my current headphones, which I know very well, as a control point before testing each pair of the Sennheiser headsets. I also used the same song, “Peaches” by Justin Bieber, to provide a consistent sonic reference. Furthermore, I left the volume untouched as I changed between the Sennheiser headphones.

Sennheiser HD 200 Pro headphones

Sennheiser HD 200 PRO headphones
The HD 200 Pro headphones feature a simple, lightweight design

A simple and classic design, the Sennheiser HD 200 PRO headphones are intended for many uses including general listening, practicing, home recording, gaming, and online teleconferencing. The HD 200 Pro feature closed, over-ear listening capsules and a lightweight, comfortable user experience overall. 

My first impression is that these come as advertised. They are basic headphones, suitable for many different home uses. Indeed they are lightweight headphones, and they turn out to be comfortable too. However, the cable is surprisingly thin and flimsy. I immediately wondered how long it would last. Even for affordable headphones, I hope for better quality with this detail.

When I put on the HD 200 Pro and started listening, the sound was clear and I heard everything in a balanced way. I noticed that there was a sort of “airy” or distant feeling to my listening experience. It feels standard and basic, which reflects exactly what this headphone should be, especially for the price point.

The noise blocking is modest, as I would expect with this model. They block out a good amount of sound, enough to allow you to stay concentrated for listening or working as needed. Overall, the HD 200 Pro offers exactly what I would want for headphones in this price range. The only true drawback is the cable. Treat it with care.

Sennheiser HD 280 Pro headphones

Sennheiser HD 280 Pro
The HD 280 Pro headphones are professional studio quality

The Sennheiser HD 280 Pro are professional studio-quality headphones and thus have different features than the HD 200 Pro. The good news is that the extra quality and features do not come with an exaggerated price difference. As with the HD 200, we have a closed over-ear design. The HD 280 Pro, however, are foldable and have better noise-blocking overall. 

Everything about these headphones seems more elaborate. They have a stronger construction and a much more rugged coiled cable. The headset is noticeably heavier than the HD 200. When I put the HD 280 on my head, I felt the difference immediately. The heavier weight imparts a more confident listener experience in line with the pro-quality Sennheiser advertises.

The fit around my ear was solid, as was the noise blocking. Although I could hear through the headphones, the noise blocking was better than the 200’s.

Time to turn on the music! Right away, I hear three differences. The first is crisp and clear high end—much more expansive than the previous headphones. Secondly, the sound is close and engaging. This is an exciting feeling, especially with a great track in your ears that stimulates your sense of adventure.

My third observation is quite surprising

. The low end, while present, seems to lack a lot of life. It is a very noticeable difference compared to the other two headphones. However, I remind myself that the HD 280 Pro are professional studio-quality headphones and that sensational low-end response is not a requirement in studio environments. I feel this detail is worth considering as you choose your ideal set of Sennheiser headphones. For home use, they may not be your first choice, but for recording studio situations they would be a solid and reliable option.

The HD 25 headphones for DJs

Sennheiser HD 25
The HD 25 headphones are particularly suitable for DJs

The Sennheiser HD 25 headphones feature a completely different design than the other two models in this review. The HD 25 model is very compact and has a playful feeling to them. Sennheiser’s design has DJs in mind primarily, and the many features of the HD 25 are very helpful for a DJ’s workflow.

The HD 25 headphones have a split headband, which allows for easier manipulation as you flip off one ear to check out the vibe in the room or listen to someone making a request. Another feature is a smaller capsule on each ear. It is a tight (yet comfortable) and very direct fit, which seems to result in better sound blocking. To illustrate, imagine the smaller capsule speaking very deliberately into your ear, and you are able to hear your music and your cues as you manage outside sounds from the room or requests from the dance floor. The HD 25 headphones really are an effective design for DJs.

The cable on the HD 25 headphones has an angled tip. This is a smart design, as most DJs plug directly into a horizontal mixing console. The angled tip reduces wear and tear on the cable. The cable is of a shorter length, it is long enough to reach from your ears to your DJ deck without tangling itself in your feet. 

Sonically, these HD 25 headphones have a very even response. I enjoy listening to them as they have crisp clear highs and present lows. The directness of the capsules adds another dimension to the listening experience and the sound blocking is surprisingly good considering the capsule does not surround the ear. I can see and hear how the HD 25 headphones can be a really good choice for DJs!

Three headphones for three different uses

Overall, my review of these Sennheiser headphones tells me that Sennheiser is making quality products that meet the needs of various consumers. Be it general-listening headphones, professional studio headphones, or headphones for DJs, each design is nuanced to help you have a quality listening experience, and comfortable functionality as well. My opinion is, if you choose the right headphones for your needs, you will be happy with any one of these Sennheiser headphones.

To summarize, the HD 200 are good all-around headphones, the HD 280 are good and solid professional studio quality, and the HD 25 has design features that are really helpful for DJs. Which of these headphones will be best for your needs?

Find these Sennheiser headphones on bestbuy.ca today.

Clinton Ryder
Based in Montreal, Canada, bassist Clinton Ryder uses a solid musical and creative foundation in his work as a professional musician, music teacher and creative coach. Proficient on both acoustic (double) bass and bass guitar, he is energized by many genres of music, particularly American music. A passion for learning, creating, collaborating, and supporting musical performance has led to thousands of live performances and numerous studio recordings reflecting his diverse musical interests. These include performances and projects with Hugh Fraser, Nikki Yanofsky, The Dears, The Irish Rovers, Holly Arntzen, Félix Stüssi, Tania Gill, Dawn Tyler Watson, Jim Byrnes, Petru Guelfucci, and Yourgi Loeffler. Find out more about his work at www.clintonrydermusic.com