Using a Plugin on the Built In Output of Mac for Headphone Correction

For headphones I use the Sennheiser 650’s and i love them, but i did try the Sonarworks 650 correction plugin and i actually thought it was excellent…but it drove me crazy to have it sometimes but not all of the time (like when using built in output)…does anyone have any direct experience with putting a plugin on the built in output of a Mac?

Not sure if I understand the question, but I have Waves NX and Sonarworks Reference Headphone plugs, which I use sometimes to check things out. How would I put it on the built-in output? You mean rather than an interface?

I saw that and was wondering how well it works & how you set up the plugin.
Does it go through your DAW?

Glad you mentioned this today Danny, heard great things about Reference… Plan demoing ‘Systemwide’ soon.

Ok, so after posting this to the forum…i decided to ask students during the live trainings and Chris F. in mastering shootouts found this…MenuBus

With this plugin you can put any plugin you want on your Mac output! You could put Phasemistress on your BBC hourly summary…whatever…in any event…it works! So now i have my Sonarworks Sennheiser 650 correction plugin on at all times!

Not to be overly dramatic…but this has asbsolutely changed my life! Thank you Chris! Wow…

I spend 2-3 hours per day with headphones on and i have never been happier! So cool!


I have the Sennheiser 650s also.
With the Sonarworks, where do you find it most helpful?
Did you use the premade 650 calibration or send in your headphones?

i use the preset (premade) with the “flat” setting – and it’s working great!

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Great advice,



Does being enrolled in the Wyatt Academy qualify you for their Educational Discount?


UPDATE: menuBus has actually been a little unstable…i was using the 14 day trial…i switched to Sonarworks System wide this morning and it seems to be more stable…this technology is a little new still…i will keep you all updated…

You have also Audio Hijack, which is so cool to configure a lot of things :

I tested the trial version of Sonarworks headphones, there is a real improvement, do you advise me to take also the speakers correction ?

Thanks for sharing. I was unsure if I should go with MenuBus or Sonarworx Systemwide.


sonarworks has been very stable…i will keep this thread updated over the next few weeks…it’s sooo nice to hear better! :wink:

I just bought the headphone plugin and systemwide upgrade and will try my next mix & master using these.

I have both the HD650 and HD800 which both have profiles in the plugin. Personally I feel I get more bass in the HD800 but that is probably because they are bigger.

But I honestly thought there should be a more less notisible difference when switching between the two while using the correct profile plugin.


If anyone’s using cans that Sonarworks doesn’t support here are a couple other things I find useful…

Redline Monitor
This is a crossfeed plugin (kind of like a less featured SPL Phonitor.) It brings the stereo image in (60º is my fav) and helps to create the impression of a center image… You can also adjust the level of the center image and fold down to mono. (Can be used with Reference/Systemwide.)

Spatial Soundcard Pro
This is my go to headphone utility now.

Spatial Sound Card lets you headphone monitor through binaurally recorded speaker/room impulses sampled from a bunch of control rooms, post production facilities, (and there’s a mastering room as well.) It’s the only headphone solution I’ve found where kick drum ‘knock’ translates in cans, which it does it really well… Soundstaging is pretty amazing as well. The binaural impulses reproduce surround sound in headphones, which is pretty increible. (Mike Thornton’s review below shows how effective it is at reproducing 5.1 in cans. A few video games have adapted this into their sound platform…)

It also has corrective EQ for a few headphone models, (not many models but imagine there’s a way you to use it in tandem with Reference 3. Prolly not systemwide though since SSC is its own virtual audio device…)

For unsupported headphone models I made my own corrective EQ using the HD600 preset and headphone graphs from this site: HeadRoom Headphone graphs

It takes a little bit to get used to but can’t imagine working without it now. The low end in particular translates really well and sounds like the low end you hear in a really good room.

PT Expert Spatial Sound Card 5.1 demo

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its funny…i got a pair of 800’s to try out and i did not like them at all…they had absolutely no low end and i found them unusable…it was strange…i love my 650’s…i am not surprised that they don’t agree…and yes when two monitoring systems don’t agree its very disconcerting.

I talked to support about this and they told me that the general preset is +/- 3db so they recommended me to send them in for individual calibration which I will.

They recommended me to send in the 650 over the 800.

Story to be continued.


paul and daniel sent their headphones in and said they were super happy with the result.


Big difference between the basic presets and sending your headphone to Sonar ?

Hey Danny, how about the CPU management using the Sonarworks plugin ? I’m using AudioHijack, it works perfectly but the problem is the % of CPU it takes for running, it’s more than Cubase… So I have to change. Could you watch on your activity monitor of your iMac and tell me how many % does it shows when mixing ? thanks