Sennheiser HD 4.40
Type: Over-ear | Style: Closed Back | Connectivity: Bluetooth, 3.5mm analog, NFC | Battery Life: 25 hours | Noise Cancellation: Passive
VERDICT:Everyone expects great sound quality from a pair of headphones made by Sennheiser. The HD 4.40 wireless is no exception. Long story short, these are the best wireless headphones on a budget.
Honestly, who doesn’t need a good pair of headphones these days? You can’t deny music is pretty important for the majority of our generation. Even while traveling, we always require some form of music on the go. This is why wireless headphones are so handy. You don’t have to deal with an annoying cord all the time during the commute.
With many phone manufacturers killing off the headphone jack, wireless headphones are getting pretty popular. We’ve seen wireless headphones get a tonne of hate because of bad audio quality. People still think we can’t get great audio with a wireless connection. This definitely isn’t true these days and the Sennheiser HD 4.40 prove that beautifully.
They are a pair of wireless headphones from one of the most reputable brands in the audio game. Furthermore, looking at the amazing value they offer, they just might be the best bang for your buck wireless headphones.
What’s In The Box?
Sennheiser is known widely as a premium brand, and the almost always deliver on the little things. Even with the unboxing experience, the overall feeling you get is you are dealing with a premium pair of cans. Well the HD 4.40 BT aren’t exactly ridiculously expensive, so there’s not a tonne actually included in the box.
You get your standard 3.5mm headphone cable, so you can plug that in if the battery dies. The headphones charge via microUSB so there’s a cable for that. We would have liked to see USB-C but that’s not a dealbreaker. You also get a soft carrying case for travel. A hard shell case would have been preferred, but we can’t complain much considering the asking price.
Design and Build Quality
Okay, let’s face it the name HD 4.40 isn’t really impressing anyone. We seriously don’t know who comes up with these names, it’s not exactly the flashiest name in the world. Well, the same could be said about the design of the headphones.
Don’t get us wrong, the sleek and stealthy black look will definitely be appreciated by a lot of people. Especially considering how flashy some headphones can get. But some people will like a design that’s a bit louder. Honestly, it is just personal preference and since the headphones sound so good, it’s not a big deal. We would have a liked a bit of accent color here and there though, as seen on other Sennheiser headphones.
Another thing to note about the design is just how large the headphones actually are. They are massive compared to other wireless headphones. The style is still your standard over-ear but the design of the ear-cups make them look much larger. Thankfully they aren’t as heavy as they look. Plus they are also foldable.
That’s thanks to the build quality largely. There is mostly plastic material all around but it is re-enforced pretty well. The hinges are well built and over build quality is sturdy. They weigh in at 225g which is not bad at all.
Comfort wise, these pair of headphones can be a bit of hit or miss. It depends on the size of the head. Since the earcups are so large, they have quite the clamping force on the head. Even on bigger heads, fatigue is pretty common after a few hours of wearing them. The headband up top also has a pretty snug fit.
The ear cups are covered in a leatherette material, as seen on other Sennheiser headphones. The memory foam in them gives them a pretty plush feel overall. Long story short, they feel pretty good on the head.
The HD 4.40 BT comes pretty near to achieving excellent comfort. The earpads are pretty good, the headphones are lightweight and they have a snug fit. Sadly, for smaller heads, they can be a bit too tight and cause fatigue. Wearing them around the neck isn’t easy either because of the massive size.
Obviously design, comfort, and build quality are pretty important aspects of a good pair of headphones. But the audio quality is obviously the most important deciding factor for a lot of people. Especially when we are talking about a pair of Sennheisers. They have quite the reputation to live up to. Thankfully, the HD 4.40 BT does not disappoint.
As you’d expect from Sennheiser, everything sounds crisp and detailed. The Overall listening experience for music and movies is quite enjoyable. It doesn’t matter what genre of music you enjoy, you are going to enjoy the sound and response from these headphones. The mid tones are well tuned and sound decent enough, but definitely, corners have been cut a bit. It’s a bit different from classic Sennheiser sound. At least they don’t sound muddy
These are definitely not flat sounding headphones. The mids are warm, the highs are well balanced and surprisingly, there is a lot of bass here. It appears Sennheiser went with a more mainstream-friendly sound balance this time around. The bass has a lot of rumble to it and when drums kick in, it’s immediately noticeable how punchy it is.
The stereo separation is done quite well. Sound is well balanced with both left and right earcups. There also isn’t any noticeable distortion at high volumes.
As the name itself implies, the HD 4.40 BT is a wireless Bluetooth headset. It’s actually one of the few wireless headsets out there that offer premium sound quality at such a low price. If we talk about connectivity options, we have Bluetooth 4.0 with the aptX codec for higher quality sound, NFC pairing, and the good old 3.5mm headphone jack.
If your phone supports NFC pairing, it’s pretty seamless and quick to use. The left earcup has the NFC technology built in. Tapping it against your phone will automatically pair it quickly and it will stay connected. Since most phones have NFC built in these days, it’s a handy feature.
The range is also pretty good over the wireless signal. From about 10 feet or so through a few walls here and there, the sound quality remains excellent. However, anything longer will start distortion, which is a common effect.
Battery life is pretty important when it comes to a pair of good wireless headphones. Worrying about battery life while listening to music really breaks the immersion and takes away from the enjoyment. Thankfully that’s not a huge issue with these cans.
Sennheiser boasts about 25 hours of battery life. Noted, this is a bit lower than the high-end Bose or Sony headphones, but those cost almost more than twice the price of the HD 4.40 BT. Overall endurance is pretty bad and if you listen for about 4-5 hours a day, you can squeeze a couple of days out of it no problem.
Consistency is also key. Throughout a large variety of different devices, these cans hold their own. It doesn’t matter what device you connect them to, they always give great battery life. And if you run out of the juice, the included 3.5mm cable is pretty useful to have on hand.
The Sennheiser HD 4.40 BT is definitely built for the mainstream audience. These are for people who want great build quality, reliability and a brand name that is synonymous for being premium. At the current listed price of $100, they are a steal deal. But there are a couple of different alternatives out there and they are worth having a look.
The 4.40 BT is made for music lovers. It has low rumbling bass to provide a lot of enjoyment to the listening experience. But it’s not exactly the flat sounding response some audiophiles will love. These are for music listening and not really meant for studio use.
What we mean by that is for people who need reference sound for editing audio. For about $100 you can get the critically acclaimed Audio Technica ATH M50X. These are definitely made for people who are working in the studio. Of course, it’s an entirely different breed, because it doesn’t have any wireless connectivity and some people won’t like the flat sound for listening to music.
Moving on, for some people, over-ear headphones are simply too big. This is especially a problem for people who like to wear headphones while exercising or running. The HD 4.40 is definitely not the right fit for this, as they can come off during these tasks. We recommend a decent pair of wireless earbuds for this case.
You could even go the different route of getting Sennheiser’s own HD 4.50 BT noise-canceling headphones. These feature active noise cancellation and cost about $50 more than the 4.40. Apart from that, build quality and sound is pretty much the same
Overall, we can’t find any major faults with the HD 4.40 BT from Sennheiser. The brand name and price tag alone can easily help sales for these headphones. They are well designed, sound pretty good and can hold their own with the build quality. Sure we can find a few quirks here and there. There is a bit of the comfort issue because of the size, and the sound isn’t all that accurate.
But for people who thoroughly enjoy music on the go, and are looking for the best pair of wireless headphones under $100, we can’t recommend these more than enough.
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Prices taken/valid at the time of review.