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AKG K701 Studio Headphones Reviews

Positive Reviews


AKG k701 Ten Year Retrospective Review


Pros: They are great for some genres of music

Cons: They are not great for some genres of music

AKG k701 Headphones A Ten Year Review RetrospectiveReview by Redcarmoose 01-14-16A revolutionary flat wire voice coil optimizes the "coil fill factor," improving efficiency and enhancing HF accuracyA two-layer diaphragm with AKG's patented Varimotion design virtually eliminates distortion and delivers exceptional imaging.The diaphragm's thickness varies from 80 µm in the center zone to provide virtually pistonic motion for well-balanced HF response to 40 µm at the perimeter for high elasticity to accommodate the increased excursion required for accurate mid-range and LF reproduction.A high-performance neodymium magnet structure complements the flat wire voice coil for frequency response...
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Truly audiophile


Pros: SQ!, build quality, design, comfort*

Cons: comfort* and sometimes bass

Lets start with:   Design, build quality & comfort:   They are white - thats what people notice on the first look. I must say I really like the design and the "feel" - The leather headband is a nice addition to the white and gray colors. Build quality is very very good - they are very sturdy and don't feel like breaking apart after a month. I dropped them incidentally few times, rolled with my chair over the cable and they are still in prefect condition. 4 Stars   *Comfort - before I bought them I read alot about the comfort (haedband) issue and when I put them first time on my head I was sure that the rumors were true - the bumps were digging a hole in my...
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AKG701's the black sheep of classical headphones


Pros: Noticeable detail and placement definition

Cons: Midrange shy and bass shy when driving rock & metal

Out of contrarian rage, I ended up getting another  pair of 701s just to see why everyone is so intent on bashing these cans.  All my silver-haired classical mastering guys love these cans and go on about their ability to open the soundstage and layer it with subtle and rich detail .  Indeed, Vocal, jazz groups , piano solo, acoustic jazz, Guitar and plucked instruments, and ethnic music sounds exemplary through these cans.  They are noticeably cleaner and better defined when generously amped.   The build quality is above average for this pricepoint.  The design feels solid, well balanced and well thought-out. It's a relatively "big" assembly but never...
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Negative Reviews

Uncle Erik

The only headphone I regretted buying and was happy to sell.


Pros: Comfortable, attractive, priced reasonably.

Cons: Godawful mids that sound artificial and plastic.

This is the only pair of headphones I bought that I was never able to warm up to.  The reason for this is that the mids - especially vocals - take on an unnatural, artificial and plasticky sound.  They never sounded true to life and began to grate on me after short listening periods.  They were OK for instrumental music, but even then, the tonality was off in the mids.   What's disappointing is that AKG dropped the K-501 and K-1000, and gave us this.  The K-701/2 is nothing like AKG's previous efforts.  I have the K-1000, K-340 and K-240DF, and used to have the K-501.  All of those got the midrange right.  I was expecting to love the K-701 as well, but like I said, the artificial...
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The Monkey



Pros: Detail

Cons: Flat and boring with one exception

LISTENED AT MANY MEETS   I never did get it about these phones.  I think they sound tinny and boring.  The only time I have ever heard them sound somewhat decent has been out of the big HeadRoom amps.  There's something to that combo.  Otherwise a real snore.

Expect and receive overpriced bathroom hardware


Pros: Detail, clarity, soundstage width

Cons: Unnatural soundstage, unnatural lack of bass, supremely uncomfortable, looks like bathroom hardware

Audio Quality: This is a very detailed and fast headphone.  Soundstage is very wide, but unnatural sounding.  Lack of bass makes the overall sound very plasticky and artificial.  My BOSE triports sound better overall.   Comfort: The pads are about as comfortable as the Beyerdynamics', however, the bumps on the underside of the headband dig into your skull.  I couldn't wear them for more than 20 minutes without having to reposition them.   Design: Other than looking like bathroom hardware strapped to your head, there are elastic bands which help adjust the earcups which will inevitably degrade over time.   Value: I've heard better headphones for this price, namely the...
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More Reviews


A classic for classical/chamber


Pros: Maybe the best phone for classical, lean, clear sound

Cons: Not ideal for rock

Although I also own a HD800, I'm keeping my AKG K701 for its combination of comfort and performance with classical music - in which it excels. Aside from the Beyer DT-880, the most comfortable headphone currently made, the K701 has plush velour pads (though users with bigger heads may prefer a larger phone). And the illusion of head space is equal to that of the DT880 and Senn HD800, making this phone easy to wear for extended periods of time.    The bass (or rather, the relative absence) is the sticking point for many. I believe that the sound is nicely balanced, but there's no question that it struggles to manage music with a more assertive bass presence. The phones have a ribbed top,...
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Fantastic - with proper break-in


Pros: Detail, soundstage, looks

Cons: Comfort, extended break-in needed

I'll first say that when I initially got these headphones and plugged them in, I was pretty disappointed.  The sound was thin, plasticy and terribly rough on my ears.  BUT I had read enough about the K701's to know that people recommend an extended break-in period of at least 100-200 hours.   I made a temporary setup in the laundry room: old iPod plugged into old Onkyo receiver, K701's plugged into receiver's headphone output.  I put a varied playlist on repeat, and kept the volume quite low at first.  I let it run 24/7, each day raising the volume some until it was at a decently loud listening level.  After about 11-12 days I had a listen - WONDERFUL!  There was now a deep liquid...
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AKG 701 very nice headphone


Pros: very detailed, good bass (not bassy ) very nice sound

Cons: a bit unconfortable the headband, problem with bigheads, need a Home/desktop amp not the best choice for portables amps

Greetings   well... how to describe this headphones?...  VERY NICE pair of headphones, very detailed, analitical, good response and bass enough. Very nice on classical and jazz music. Ideal for CDs or Vinyls of symphonic music.   Looks very well and need a good amp and DAC, but still unamped sound very nice. Cheers.

Another legendary headphone from AKG


Pros: Airiness, resolution, mids, musicality

Cons: can be a little uncomfortable on the crown

I have had these headphones for some time now and would like to write a simple review. They sound absolutely fantastic. I also have a Sennheiser HD 650 which I immensely like for all their virtues but after purchasing k701 I rarely reach for my Senns. k701 is a better allrounder and particularly fits the music styles I love the most, classical and jazz. That big and airy sound is simply magical. Every note and every small detail is so clearly reproduced and presented. The tone is very balanced and quite natural. 



Pros: True flat response.

Cons: I don't have a mellon head.

Some have said that these are more suited to classical. I understand why. Personally, I knew I had a keeper after my first session with my Lo Fi blues collection. Hard to admit, but better than my cherished k280. 
Happy Camper

They have their place.


Pros: Wide but balanced presentation, details without loudness,

Cons: finicky to amp

When I first got the K701, I had been using the Ety 4s so the bass was actually better on the 701s. They did sound tinny and shallow. I read that they needed about 400 hours of play to settle into the final character they will provide so I left them on along with a new tube amp for three weeks non stop. If they were going to fail, I wanted them to do it early in the warranty.   They did indeed respond both to moderate volume material and a more powerful amp. As I became more knowledgeable of the nuances of the sound, I started tweaking the cables, tubes and power cords.   I can say that while other headphones in the $250 range may have looks or a "wow"sound initially, I have...
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Great mid-priced cans!


Pros: Clarity, dynamics and response are terrific

Cons: The adjustable headband construction is poor and comfort level can be better

I know these cans get a bad rap in certain areas but that's dependent on the listener and gear they use with it. When burned in and driven properly they are a great set of reference headphones. Emphasis on reference. They are exactly what they are meant to be and deliver great presence. I'm not a fan of over-driven bass which was I huge reason I bought these. They aren't lacking at all in this area as many reviewers claim, yet most likely under-driven and hence the reason some feel this way. When pair with a good amp, especially a tube headphone amp that can match the impedance they a deliver strong responsive bass that's not over produced. I'm a big jazz fan and Jaco comes through clean...
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One of the best headphones on the market


Pros: soundstage, flat response, comfortable

Cons: hard to drive, not portable

Why do I like these? They are comfortable (compared to M50s IMO), they have really big sounstage and they really flat frequency response which I really like. They also come with nice stand that will keep your headphones "stored" nicely. Build quality is pretty good, but these aren't really ment to be travelled with. They are really big and can't fold at all + they also don't come with any kind of box/pouch, so these are really ment to be used at home. Another reason for that is power; they need quite some juice to sound good. They will reach some volume even with phone, but it won't sound very good. They work with Focusrite scarlett 2i4's amp pretty good, but I'm sure they will sound even...
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Astounding Detail and Soundstage with poor mids.


Pros: Detail, Soundstage.

Cons: thin, bumps on leather headband.

The AKG K 701 Studio Reference is one of AKG's, or Akustische und Kino-Geräte's many succesfull headphones. This model in particular, is a full size studio headphone, with an open ended design. These headphones, aside from their physical appeal in design and comfort, have clean and flat sound that is appreciated by most listeners.    The overal tonality of the headphone, besides its noted detail and depth, is flat and balanced. A flat frequency response is great for the average audiophile, but for the more average consumer, a little boring. They are also notoriously difficult to drive, and are very detailed. The sound is slightly warm, compared to the...
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inexplicably sabotaged by Akg


Pros: Akg k701 mod bass - definition, dynamics, timbre, bass, soundstage

Cons: Akg k 701 mod bass - still does not forgive the bad recordings

I bought these headphones love / hate with the taste of the challenge. I learned that in Germany have discovered a reversible change to free the low and I started the monkey. I got them used to not having to worry about the warranty and I removed the lock reflex back and added the balanced connector. In this configuration they are simply delicious, adding but not distorting the bottom. The midrange is high have not suffered in the least. Later, having noticed the ridiculous amount of copper used for wiring the I also rewired and K701 have taken flight! A capacity of resolution of detail that I remembered only by the Stax Lambda Pro, but with a low that you could not just ask. They have...
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