For the first time a complete characterization by infrared spectroscopy of a Ni-Fe-Se hydrogenase in its different redox states is reported. The Ni-Fe-Se hydrogenase was isolated from Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough. Two different electron paramagnetic resonance silent and air-stable redox states that are not in equilibrium were detected. Upon reduction of these states the catalytically active states Ni-R and Ni-C appear immediately. These states are in redox equilibrium and their formal redox potential has been measured. Putative structural differences between the redox states of the active site of the Ni-Fe-Se hydrogenase are discussed.