Sennheiser HD 558 makes strange sound

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by Kaze No Tamashii, Aug 14, 2017.

  1. Kaze No Tamashii

    Kaze No Tamashii Notebook Evangelist

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    I bought the Sennheiser 558 a few days ago but I've noticed that it sometimes makes distorted sound when I connect it via the audio jack on my laptop. It's not a problem with a song or a video because even when I play games, sometimes the sound is distorted. I had no problem with Apple earphone at all so it's quite strange. The Sennheiser has a big audio jack (probably for amplifier?) but it also comes with a 3.5mm adapter so I'm not sure if this is the cause.

    I also noticed that when I plug the Sennheiser in my laptop, it's kinda flimsy and loose so this might be another reason.

    I bought a USB hub with audio jack on Amazon and tried plugging the Sennheiser in. It doesn't make distorted sound anymore, however, sometimes it sounds like a fraction of a second of the song is skipped and the song just fastforward. I don't know what this is called but hopefully you guys can understand what it is.

    I've also tried the headphone with my phone and it sounds just fine, no distorted sound or skipped anything. And all the distorted sound and skipped are random so it's not because of the song. I download foobar2000 and it seems it makes distorted sound and skips more often than with Windows media player for some reason.
     
  2. namaiki

    namaiki "basically rocks" Super Moderator

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    Is it still loose when plugged into the USB hub w/audio jack?
     
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  3. Kaze No Tamashii

    Kaze No Tamashii Notebook Evangelist

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    It seems pretty tight. I tried with apple earphone and it works fine with the USB hub.
     
  4. tijo

    tijo Sacred Blame Super Moderator

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    It is either a loose jack or there something causing electromagnetic interference to the headphones from the laptop. By the way, there should be a cable with a 3.5 mm jack available for those headphones just like there is one for the HD598. That could help with the issue, if the 1/4" jack is anything like that on the 598, with the adapter it ends up being pretty big and could easily put some strain on a slightly loose jack which could lead to poor contact.
     
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  5. Kaze No Tamashii

    Kaze No Tamashii Notebook Evangelist

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    I don't see any extra cable with 3.5mm jack anywhere. Only the 3.5mm adapter. I don't think the cable on my headphone is detachable either.

    I disable all sound effects in the speaker properties menu and it seems it gets better. Not sure if my problems are completely gone.
     
  6. tijo

    tijo Sacred Blame Super Moderator

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    Here's said cable: https://en-us.sennheiser.com/hd-5x8-short-cable

    The headphone side of the cable needs to be turned to be detached, it's not a push/pull type of connector, it's meant to not be easily detached.

    While the cable may not fix your problems, it is definitely very convenient to have.
     
  7. Kaze No Tamashii

    Kaze No Tamashii Notebook Evangelist

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    what is the chance of my headphone being defective? I really don't want to buy a $12 cable to test it out. I also sent a ticket to Sennheiser and hopefully they'll answer. I bought this from BestBuy so I may actually just refund.

    The headphone works fine with my phone but it just doesn't work with my laptop.
     
  8. tijo

    tijo Sacred Blame Super Moderator

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    Have you tried any other device than the phone and laptop. That it works fine with your phone leads me to think that there is more than just the headphones at play, but it can sometimes be difficult to gauge.
     
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  9. Fire_Child22

    Fire_Child22 Notebook Guru

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    Try propping the jack up with something to see if it's strain on the socket with the adapter.

    The sounds your picking up, could be electrical interference that higher end headphones are more sensitive to, and would recommend trying a DAC to remove this potential. A quality DAC and AMP combo can be had for $100 and are worth it, not just for now, but for future headphone purchases.

    The skipping, could be because the USB transfer of the audio, into the jack, the cable may not be fast enough to translate the information. What's the USB cable type? The removal of the distortion could be because the hub is acting like a DAC.

    Can you do a test for me. Plug the headphones into your computer. Have no music or sounds playing, but turn up the volume. Keep going until you hear any hissing or popping.

    If you get the hissing and popping, it's strong evidence of electrical interference. pending on your model, some laptops and desktop motherboards have a built in DAC, not all, however they will vary in effectiveness while crammed in among everything else.

    Finally, while it's popping and distorting, can you wiggle the jack slightly to see if it changes while moving it. This will finally decide if it's the connection or not, however from what you've already described I doubt this is the problem.

    Hope this helps mate, don't be discouraged as the 558 is not a bad headphone.
     
  10. Kaze No Tamashii

    Kaze No Tamashii Notebook Evangelist

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    I tried this headphone on a different laptop and I still noticed some strange noise. Much fainter and less often though. However, I listened to the song on youtube so not sure if that's the cause.

    Thanks for detailed reply. I didn't notice any hissing and popping for both laptop audio jack and the usb hub. For testing distorted sound, it's really hard because it occurs randomly and not that often. My usb hub uses 3.0 usb and I believe my laptop only has 3.0 usb ports (Clevo P670SE).

    I'm mostly concerned about whether my headphone is defective since I can still do an exchange at Bestbuy. Also, do you have any recommendation for a DAC + amp combo <$100. I'd like to look into them.

    This is the USB I'm using btw https://www.amazon.com/UGREEN-Exter...26597&sr=8-1&keywords=usb+hub+with+audio+jack
     
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