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Planar magnetic headphones

Item #: 818HE6

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Warning: these headphones should not be taken lightly

HiFiMAN HE-6 planar driver headphones

The world of top-class headphones has a new contender: HiFiMAN's planar magenetic drivers deliver warm, detailed sound that has captured the attention of discerning audiophiles. The HE-6, their flagship headphone, deserves to be considered among the best in any class. This robust planar design can take your music to new heights with its beautifully-balanced tone and impossibly-wide frequency range. But be warned: you will need a powerful headphone amp to drive these monsters. These headphones aren't to be taken lightly. But neither is your music.

Experience the HiFiMAN planar edge

Unlike the dynamic drivers used in most headphones and speakers, planar drivers use thin flexible diaphragms with voice coils etched onto their surface rather than a voice coil attached to a cone. This exceptionally lightweight structure uses a large driver surface area to reproduce your music with openness and detail that are difficult to achieve with conventional designs. Every element of the HE-6 is designed to deliver a striking sonic experience that will spark fresh listens of all your favorite music.

Balanced connections for your dedicated amp

The HE-6 comes pre-wired with XLR-outputs for use with balanced-connection amplifiers for a more revealing presentation. An adapter with a 1/4-inch jack is supplied for standard unbalanced connections. With an efficiency rating of 83.5 dB, the uncompromised HE-6 requires a powerful headphone amp, so don't even think of trying to plug these directly into a portable device. Not only will the proper amp provide the necessary power to drive the HE-6, it will push them to peak performance, ensuring tight, impactful bass, exquisite detail and a life-sized soundstage.

Looking for a great-sounding portable music player? Check out the HiFiMAN Express HM-601 Slim.

Product Highlights:

  • planar magnetic drivers for low distortion and warm, detailed sound
  • a separate headphone amplifier is required to properly power these headphones for optimum sound quality
  • open-back design for spacious soundstage
  • 2 pairs of ear pads
  • 6-foot balanced single crystal copper XLR cable
  • 3-foot unbalanced adapter with full-sized headphone plug
  • hard shell travel case
  • frequency response: 8-65,000 Hz
  • sensitivity: 83.5 dB
  • impedance: 50 ohms
  • weight: 24.3 oz.
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

HiFiMAN HE-6 Reviews

Average Customer Review:

1 Review

Hifiman HE-6

Written by: RobW from Atlanta, GA on March 29, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

  • "Coolness Factor"
  • Build Quality
  • Comfort
  • Noise Reduction
  • Sound Quality

I'm a big fan of the Sennheiser HD800 and wanted a headphone to compliment it with more bass presence. The HE-6 has a very "palpable" bass response; I can feel it as well has hear it. The only problem is the upper end is a bit overcooked. Tyll from Innerfidelity calls it a "tizzyiness" and I agree. I tried several amps including a couple of speaker amps and still got an irritating treble response. I even put in a tube preamp to tame the response curve, but still no luck. I realize I could keep looking for the right amp/dac combo (I have the Naim DAC and that's pretty high end), but I'm pretty happy with my current setup and it works quite well with my HD800's. So I keep looking. Thanks to Crutchfield for the great customer service.

Pros: Great bass Responds well to power Very detailed

Cons: Extremely fatiguing treble Electric guitars are rendered very harshly

Hands-on research

What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • Black over-ear headphones with leather ear pads
  • 6' Cable with left and right proprietary screw-on terminals on one end and a male 4-pin XLR plug on the other end
  • 3.5' Cable with female 4-pin XLR connector on one end and a straight 1/4" plug on the other
  • Spare ear pads (velour)
  • 2 Spare screw-on terminals
  • Cloth pouch
  • Zippered semi-hard case

Features and Specs

Earcup Type Open
Bluetooth No
Frequency Response 8-65k Hz
Sensitivity 83.5 dB
Impedance 50 Ohms
Weight 24.3 ounces
Cord Length 72" + 42"
Airline Adapter Included No
iPod Control No
Volume Control No
Built-in Microphone No
Parts Warranty 1 Year
Labor Warranty 1 Year

Product Research


Overview: The HiFiMAN HE-6 over-ear headphones feature high-performance planar magnetic drivers that provide a warm, pleasant sound signature. The HE-6s come with a detachable 2-piece cable with terminals for XLR and 1/4" headphone jacks. The headphones and cables can be stored in the supplied black velour pouch or the zippered semi-hard case.

Performance: These high-end headphones are not efficient enough to provide adequate volume when used with an average portable music player. For best performance, it is recommended that you use a headphone amplifier, such as the HiFiMAN EF-6, to drive them.

Ear Pads: The HE-6 headphones come with two sets of ear pads. The leather covered pads are installed on the headphones. A spare set of pads, covered in velour, are also included.

Cable: The supplied 6' OCC (single crystal copper) 4-pin cable has a balanced male XLR plug for connecting to high-end components and headphone amplifiers. It has a screw terminal for each ear cup to ensure a secure connection. In addition, the included 3.5' OCC extension cable has a female XLR and a 1/4" full-sized headphone plug so you can connect to your home components. The headphones come with an extra set of screw terminals in case you want to make your own cable.


  • Frequency Response: 8 Hz to 65k Hz
  • Impedance: 50 ohms
  • Sensitivity: 83.5dB

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Customer Q&A