Are you looking for a pair of wireless headphones that you can use at home for watching movies or listening to music? Sennheiser is well-known for making well-built, affordable headphones for both casual listeners and audiophiles.
Although they’re not all perfect, some models perform better than the competition. After you read through our Sennheiser HD 4.4 BT Review, you’ll know whether or not they’ll meet your expectations. How do they hold up against the competition? Keep reading to find out!
Sennheiser HD 4.4 BT Review – How Do They Hold Up?
Features & Technical Specs:
- Circumarual (over-ear) swivel ear cups
- Ear cup design allows for passive noise isolation
- Built-in microphone featured on the right ear cup
- Semi-compact folding design (w/ drawstring cloth carrying pouch)
- Also includes one 1.4 m detachable flat 3.5 mm headphone cable (w/ gold-plated plug)
- Download the CapTune App to personalize your EQ (free to download)
- Bluetooth 4.0 + aptX technology (w/ NFC pairing)
- Option to listen using a wired or wireless connection
- Compatible with smartphones, laptops, PCs, and other portable devices
- Battery Life: Up to 25 hours on a single charge (via the included micro USB charging cable)
- Frequency Response: 18 – 22,000 Hz
- Impedance: 18 Ohms
- Dimensions: 7.08 x 3.94 x 10.25 inches
- Weight: 7.84 ounces
Before you move on, take a quick look at the links below that you can use to navigate our review. Each section will provide an in-depth analysis for each individual performance aspect.
Here are the 5 main areas you’ll want to consider before making your decision:
- Build Quality & Thoughts On Comfort
- Button Controls & Wireless Pairing
- Wired vs. Wireless Performance
- Using The CapTune App For Personalizing EQ
- Sonic Performance & Genres That Bring Them To Life
First, let’s take a look at their build quality and whether or not they have a long-lasting comfortable design!
Build Quality & Thoughts On Comfort
These are constructed with a plastic that’s extremely lightweight but it doesn’t feel low quality. (Which contributes to their overall comfort.)
The headphones don’t make any creaking sounds when you pick them up, put them on, fold them for compact storage, or adjust them while they’re on your head.
They have a decent amount of clamp which helps them stay in place while you’re moving around using the wireless connection.
The thin headband has a decent amount of padding, although it might be nice to have a little bit extra cushion.
A soft leatherette material covers the headband and ear cups. It offers a good amount of ventilation and doesn’t cause excessive sweat build up after hours of use.
One downside about the thin headband cushioning is that it can start to do become slightly less comfortable after wearing them for a few hours.
Adding a little bit of extra padding might be helpful for taking comfort to the next level – even if it would add more weight to an already considerably lightweight pair of cans.
Headphone Jack Placement
One feature that’s different from most ‘phones is the headphone jack placement. It connects to the right ear cup (instead of the left), which might be a bit awkward at first.
When you pick them up to put them on, just remember that all the button controls are on the right side. The majority of people are right-handed so it does make sense why they chose to keep the controls on that side.
Folding Design + Drawstring Carrying Pouch
The 4.40 bend and fold inward, just as the end of the headband curve on either side. This helps them easily fit in the included drawstring carrying pouch.
The pouch is made of cloth and doesn’t have any reinforcement, but it’s an easy way to keep your ‘phones out of the way and dust-free. (Plus, you can keep the headphone and charging cable together for safe storage.)
Ear Cup Design & Cushion Comfort
The swivel ear cups turn about 45° in either direction. They swivel just enough to allow you to comfortably adjust them to the contour of your head.
You won’t be able to fold them all the way flat, face-down like you can with the Status Audio CB-1 (which isn’t absolutely necessary, just a convenient feature).
Both ear cushions are oval-shaped and more narrow than you might expect. The ear cushion openings could be a little wider to make the fit more universal. That being said, the cushion is pliable-enough to fit most ear sizes.
Just like the headband, each ear cushion is covered with a similar soft leatherette material. The cushions themselves have plenty of padding. You shouldn’t experience any physical ear fatigue at all – even after several hours of intense listening.
The ear pads are replaceable if they get worn out or torn (which would take quite a while unless you’re using them to workout or run everyday).
Passive Noise Isolation
There is a pretty important purpose behind making the ear cups oval shaped and more narrow than usual. The design helps form a better seal around your ears – which improves passive noise isolation.
Does it block out as much noise as the active noise cancelling on the HD 4.50? No, but it will keep most ambient noise from leaking in and disturbing your listening.
The level of noise isolation is perfect for everyday use, walking around in busier areas, or use on an airplane.
Button Controls & Wireless Pairing
The button controls are featured on the bottom of the right ear cup. It has a power button that doubles as the Bluetooth pairing function, volume up/down, and a skip track slider function.
The headphone jack and charging ports are also located on the right ear cup. Next, we’ll go over the basic functions you can control using the button layout.
To power your ‘phones on – hold the power button down for 3 seconds. Once they’re on, a voice will say “Power on”.
To power them off, hold the power button down for about 3 seconds. Once they’re off, a voice will say “Power off”.
(The power button also doubles as the Bluetooth pairing function, which we’ll cover in more detail below.)
Battery Life & Using Them While Charging
These ‘phones also have the ability to stay charged up for about 24-25 hours of use (on a single charge). For most users, that’s more than enough battery life.
If your ‘phones end up dying halfway through an album or movie, you can switch to the wired connection. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to continue listening via Bluetooth while they’re charging.
In order to get up to 25 hours of playback, a single uninterrupted charge will take about 2 hours.
Once they’re fully-charged (using the included micro USB charging cable, the blue LED indicator light will start flashing.
Volume Adjustments, Skipping Tracks, & Play/Pause Control
To adjust volume, you can reach up and use the volume control button that sits directly behind the 2.5 mm headphone jack.
The volume control placement is very convenient because you can keep your phone in your pocket, backpack, purse, and still have control over your music. Once you’ve turned the volume up as far as it can go – you’ll hear a beeping sound letting you know you’ve reached the limit.
Track Slider Function
The track slider function allows you to skip tracks and pause or play your music. Here are some basic instructions to give you a good idea of how they work.
- To skip back, flick/pull towards the headphone cable.
- To skip forward, flick/pull away from the headphone cable.
- To pause/play music, push the notch sticking out in the center of the track slider button
- To activate calling mode, hold the center notch button down for a few seconds until a voice lets you know it’s been activated.
Although you can control quite a few different functions using the track slider, it isn’t the most intuitive control. It will probably take some time to figure out the layout (and their functions) but it’s easy enough that you’ll adjust after spending a short period of time playing around with them.
How To Pair Using Standard Bluetooth
To activate the Bluetooth pairing mode, hold the power button down for about 4 seconds.
Once the LED light flashes from blue to red, they’re ready to pair. After you’ve successfully paired them with your device, you’ll hear a voice say “Connected”.
How To Pair Using NFC One-Touch
If you’ve never used NFC pairing before, it’s basically an easier way to connect your devices.
First, you’ll activate the NFC setting on your smartphone (or other portable player). Next, hold the NFC logo (on the back of the left ear cup) against the center of your phone.
After a few seconds, check your phone to make sure they’ve been successfully paired.
if you pause the music then power off – you can power them back on and use the NFC function again to re-pair them.
Wired vs. Wireless Connection & Performance
The included headphone cable is a proprietary flat cable. It uses the signature Sennheiser twist-to-lock mechanism. The 2.5 mm end connects to the headphones which then leads out to the standard 3.5 mm right angle jack.
One benefit of using a flat cable is that it tends to get tangled less often than a round cable. It definitely comes in handy when you store the cable and headphones in the drawstring pouch.
Some people aren’t fans of proprietary cables since it can be harder to find a replacement cable. In most cases, you won’t need to replace the cable (unless it’s misplaced or your dog gets a hold of it).
Conserve Battery Life
You can conserve battery life by using the wired connection since it doesn’t take any battery at all to listen that way.
Another positive aspect of using the wired connection is the quality of sound (compared to wireless). Listening to music or watching movies using the wired connection is more enjoyable since your media will sound more full and you can listen at higher volumes.
Bluetooth Performance – Too Much Buzzing/White Noise?
One issue with certain wireless headphone models is the notorious “buzzing” or “white noise” that can get pretty annoying. Here’s the good news: the HD 4.40 have absolutely ZERO Bluetooth static or white noise when they’re paired and nothing’s playing.
Noticeable latency (or lag) is another commonly experienced issue with some wireless headphones. Once again, the 4.40 will give you ZERO issues with lag when you’re watching movies, TV, or videos on YouTube.
This is exactly why they’re featured on our Best Sennheiser Wireless Headphones For TV. There’s nothing worse than watching a movie and realizing that the words being spoken are totally out of sync.
Next, let’s take a closer look at the included CapTune app.
Using The CapTune App For Personalizing EQ
The CapTune App is a free to download and fully-compatible with Apple and Android phones. Once you download the app, you are given a variety of EQ choices. You can use one of the built-in presets, or create your own EQ settings.
If you create your own EQ setting, you can name it, save it, and store it on your phone. If you want to, you can create multiple personalized settings for specific genres.
Another interesting feature is the ability to create individual sound profiles for specific activities. For example, you can have one setting for running, one for the airplane, one for biking, and another separate setting for your commute.
Drawbacks & Compatibility Concerns
Overall, the app is pretty easy to control and fairly user-friendly. Although the music does sound noticeably better using CapTune, there are a few pretty major drawbacks.
Both drawbacks revolve around its limited compatibility. As of now, CapTune is not fully optimized for use with a tablet, laptop, or PC. It’s only compatible with digital music files that you’ve downloaded directly to your phone or streaming music using Tidal.
Although Tidal is a great streaming service, the majority of people use Spotify or Apple Music. CapTune seems like a pretty awesome bonus feature to include, but once you consider the drawbacks – you’re usually better off using another EQ app or portable amp.
Sonic Performance & Genres That Bring Them To Life
We decided to save the most impressive performance aspect for the last section. We briefly covered a few details regarding sound quality above, but here’s the complete breakdown of their sonic performance.
As is still the case with most wireless headphones, the 4.40 definitely sound more powerful when using the wired connection.
You can enhance the level of detail and volume using the CapTune app – but since it’s not compatible with most music streaming services, you’ll want to know how they perform without an EQ or amplification app.
Sound Profile – Lows, Mids, Highs & Detail By Genre
The sound profile right out of the box is pretty well-balanced and dynamic. Even though these ‘phones aren’t the most detailed, they show off their strengths in other areas.
Low End Bass Response
The low end frequencies aren’t overpowering and have a very dynamic bass response that anyone can appreciate – whether you consider yourself a bass-head or not.
While the bass response could be more detailed, it’s hard to complain considering their impressive performance for such a bargain.
Mid Range Presence
When listening to a wide range of genres, the mid range frequencies tend to be more subdued and laid back.
Some of you might enjoy the laid back mid range presence, although it’s not preferable when listening to certain styles of music.
For example, when listening to hip-hop, the vocals sit further behind the rest of the track (see more details below).
Crisp, But Not Perfect Highs
The highs are surprisingly crisp and at times stick out slightly above the rest of the track. (When listening to hip-hop it’s especially noticeable.)
Differences Across A Wide Range Of Genres
When listening to metal/hard rock, the vocals are slightly subdued since the mid range is more laid back (regardless of genre). The other instruments (guitar, bass, and drums) are fairly detailed and well-rounded.
Traveller by Chris Stapleton also sounds great, where the lower acoustic instrumentation is fully-present and sits pretty evenly alongside the vocals and other instruments.
Most of the hip-hop tracks we tested proved that the only thing that might make the bass response more impressive is if it was just a little bit tighter. There was some very minimal low end distortion when paired with a FiiO A3 while listening to extremely bass-heavy hip-hop at louder volumes.
EDM also performs very well utilizing the impressive, dynamic bass response to its advantage. The clean electronic production plays extremely well and leaves little (if anything to complain about).
There wasn’t any noticeable distortion in any of the genres listening without a headphone amp. These ‘phones surpass most expectations and can be used for stand-alone listening or paired with a quality DAC/Amp.
2 Areas That Could Use Improvement
If we’re going to be really nit-picky, there are a few main areas that could use slight improvement.
One of the most common pieces of feedback for most wireless ‘phones revolves around experiencing lower-than-perfect volume levels. These would easily be one of the top competitors for sub-$100 headphones if the volume could go 25% louder (when connected via Bluetooth).
As far as adjusting the sound profile (without using CapTune) if you could slightly tune down the highs and raise the mid range frequencies up just a few notches – the sound profile would be nearly perfect.
Inner Ear Fatigue & Playback Conclusions
Sound profile preference does vary from person to person, so you might like it the way it is. It’s also very possible that you may have slightly different taste in sound. This would mean that you might highlight other areas to critique than the levels we focused on.
To sum up their sonic performance, we experienced ZERO inner ear fatigue after several hours of intense listening and were overall very pleasantly surprised by their playback.
How Do They Hold Up? – Pros/Cons + Our Final Rating
By now, you should have a pretty good idea about how well these headphones perform. They offer a fairly well-balanced sound profile with an impressive dynamic bass response.
Features like NFC pairing, wireless connectivity, and above-average passive noise isolation are the cherry on top. Where they slightly lack in terms of top-notch detail imaging – they make up for in terms of comfort and practical performance.
No matter what your preferred genre of choice, the sound profile is able to adjust and adapt accordingly. Their dynamic sound profile can be appreciated by a wide range of listeners – ranging from casual listeners to those with a more sophisticated taste for audio.
You can easily take these cans wherever you go without having to worry too much about them dying prematurely. Very few headphones in this price range can compete with these cans.
Take a look at the review table below to see one last pros/cons checklist, how these ‘phones rank according to our criteria, and our final rating.
If you’d like to see a few more customer reviews and/or pricing info before you decide, click here. We hope you found our Sennheiser HD 4.4 BT Review helpful in making your decision!
If you have any questions about anything we covered here, feel free to leave one below! What do you think? Do these headphones have what it takes?
If you enjoyed this review and want to stick around, take a look at the Top 25 Tracks To Test Your Headphones here. Thanks for stopping by, we look forward to hearing from you!
Sonic Elevation: Ride The Waves.
Sennheiser HD 4.40 BT Headphones
Build Quality & Comfort8.5/10
Button Controls & Wireless Pairing9.0/10
Passive Noise Isolation8.5/10
- Dynamic Bass Response + Fairly Well-Balanced Sound Profile
- Solid Performance With Or Without A Headphone Amp
- Ability To Listen Wired & Wireless
- 25 Hour Battery Life
- Long-Lasting Comfort
- Ear Cups Don't Swivel 90°
- Limited CapTune App Compatibility
- Wireless Volume Limitations