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K702 Annies: Q701s with a darker side, better with more genres, but still a K7-series

A Review On: AKG K702 65th Anniversary Edition

AKG K702 65th Anniversary Edition

Rated # 86 in Over-Ear
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bpandbass
Posted · Updated · 17123 Views · 5 Comments

Pros: articulate mids, intimate soundstage, dark, smooth, non-sibilant highs, highly detailed, comfortable, clean bass, not picky with cheaper amps

Cons: No extra goodies in the box, not as transparent at times as the Q701, not warm, no real bass slam and picky with tubes (like most K7's),

UPDATE: I made a few updates after comparing the Annies to other headphones in the my collection, and running them on my Maverick Audio A1 hybrid amp.

 

The K702 "Annies" are basically the sonic precursor to the K712 Pros, which just rolled off the assembly line. Think of them as a Quincy Jones Q701 but with squishier ear pads, no headband bumps, softer, less sibilant highs, a little more mid bass, more intimate vocals, and a thicker sound. Instruments don't quite float in the air like they do with the Q701, but to me, the less bright highs and non-aggressive upper mids make them easier to listen to for longer periods of time, and surprisingly make them a bit easier to pick out nuances due to a less distracting bright treble.

 

The bass is definitely there, though not as much as the K240 Studios/MKIIs, and does't really have much physical slam. The Annies still have that fast (compared to some dark Sennheisers) sound, natural mids and vocals which I love about AKGs. They are a little thicker sounding than the Q701s. Take note that they aren't very strong in the sub bass, or with synthesized bass. They don't like synthesized bass, unlike the K240s, which slam equally hard with synthed bass as instrumental bass. But they are great at reproducing well defined bass from drums, upright basses and bass guitars so they do a good job with more instrumental hip-hop like The Roots and Q-Tip. Overall though, the Annies don't have much bass slam at all.

 

For the price, they are great headphones that take a good middle ground between dark, laid back Sennheisers, and analytical, lean, but musical AKGs like the Q701 and K702. After owning them for a number of months and using them on different amps, however, I am come to the conclusion that the K702 Annies are a dark, analytical, but NOT a warm headphone. So don't expect any foot tapping action with them. They are meant for relaxed, dark, analytical (maybe this word has become trite by now) long term, late night listening, which makes up maybe about 30 percent of my listening. When I say the K702 Annies are still a K7-series, I mean that they are still somewhat dry, not very warm, lean, picky with amps and systems, but in this case, thicker and darker headphones rather than slightly bright, extra lean, quick and airy K7's (Q701s, K701, normal K702s). I have pretty much found out I am more of a warmth and energetic headphone sort of person (Beyerdynamic DT990 and AKG K240), so these are a bit dry and rolled up for my tastes. Still, for the right person, the K702 Annies are magical.

5 Comments:

Very nice review. I definitely agree with most of it.
I agree with most of it except the more intimate vocals part. Maybe male vocals? Female vocals seem much more distant, which is what ruins it for me. I actually find this headphone TOO DARK. It's darker than the HD-650 I have. I tried for weeks to like it but I can't. Just based on preferences only.
I can't really tell any difference in sub bass between the Q701 and Anniversary.
I would agree that the upper mid range is fairly dark, especially compared to the AKG K240 Studios, but that's also what makes the Annies easy to listen to. Sub bass is definitely not any stronger , but the mid bass impact is definitely more than the Quincies.
This Review really helped me pick these as my next pair of headphones, they seem great for what I want, I don't need strong bass but I still need bass when its really there in the music and vocals are key for me and highs shouldn't kill your ears, though the price is high ill just save up until I get these sometime next month or two.
P.S the ultimate test for any headphone is to get Smoke on the Water (live) to sound like your really there, once they achieve that never take them off...
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