Thank you for the response.
I've never heard the HF-2, so I cannot comment there. Compared to my re-cabled K501, the DT880/600 are definitely less coherent and "flush" in the midrange, though. The Beyers give a "pinpoint" and well-sorted rendition by comparison, for lack of better adjectives.
Also, I agree with your previous comment about the DT880/600 being analytical in their signature, although to me they manage to walk the tightrope between analytical and musical expertly, while avoiding frigidity or sterility. But that's something I've always liked about the DT880 (and one of my preferred listening modes). I will submit that the DT880/600 is less coldly analytic than the 2003 version. (But, again, sometimes I like a "cold"/stark presentation.)
Compared to the DT880/2003, the DT880/600 are better balanced across the frequency bands and better integrated in the midrange, IMHO. But for me the DT880/2003 had more of a sense of air due to their more extended (some folks will say "hotter") treble response, which I happen to like. My ears are tipped toward a brighter presentation than many on these threads tend to prefer. However, I think that the improved balance/integration of frequencies with the DT880/600 make them a good design in their own right. It's their improved frequency synergism coupled with their excellent presentation of detail that makes the 600 version a real winner.
Someday, Deo volente, I would like to formally a/b these two DT880 iterations to suit myself and answer any lingering questions. For now, the DT880/600 make a wonderful compliment to the K501, and are definitely worth keeping for a good while.
Last night I listened to Lee Rittenour's rhythmic, Brazilian "Festival" (GRP), Loggins and Messina's "Best of Friends" (Columbia), Putumayo's "A Jewish Odyssey" (Putumayo) and Andrew Parrott, the Taverner Consort Choir and Players, performing "Giovanni Gabrieli, Canzonas, Sonatas, Motets" (EMI). The DT880/600 handled each genre adroitly, making each session abundantly enjoyable. With Gabrieli, the Beyers both resolved and preserved intact an incredible amount of musical information. I really enjoy this kind of period music!
Again, I don't agree with claims that the DT880/600's bass is "thin" or "lean". If anything, they tend to be bass-pronounced--but not bass-bloated--in an enjoyable way. I am beginning to wonder if Beyerdynamic's earlier production pieces had thinner bass than later production. Or, whether it's just my ears. Regardless, the DT880/600 are capable of prodigious bass response: deep, articulate, tuneful and delivered with impact. With a driver tube like the Tung-Sol 6SN7GTB, the bass can border on the phenomenal, IMHE.
Never heard the LDMKII, either, but when I had the Darkvoice 336i, it drove the DT880/2003 to near perfection, IMHO. I'd like to hear reports of how well the DV336SE drives the DT880/600. : )
Edited by pataburd - 5/17/10 at 2:51pm