Originally Posted by chicolom
Sounds like you would like the HD800s What did you listen to them from in the store (Was the Q701 hooked up to a DAC/Amp?) I ask because they became a lot clearer and more open sounding upon "DAC-ing" - sort of de-warmed them. But yes, they are mildly warm and smooth sounding to me as well. I consider it to sound very natural though. Some headphones with more emphasized treble present more details, but it's almost more emphasis then you hear in real life. A good example for me is piano recordings. A play piano so I know what they should sound like, and a lot of headphones will make them sound more trebley than actually are in real life. Q701s reproduce their sound the best to me.
That doesn't mean I don't want brighter, more detailed headphones. I would like to try some way on down the line. But soundstage gets priority for me, so that means I would need to jump up to the flagship headphones in order to actually better the AKGs in that department (like the HD800)
I have actually tried the HD800 as well. Yes they sound beautiful! However, to be very honest, I don't hear much difference compared to the SRH940. Certainly not 5x better given the price being 5x higher. But then now that I think about it, it's probably because I tried it with an inferior amp (udac2). I definitely hear the spaciousness and more detail than the SRH940. But at the end of the day, I don't have the money to afford a $1500 headphone.
I tried the Q701 with both the Nuforce UDAC2 and Icon HDP. The Nuforce are known to make things a bit brighter, but I do not notice that as much as I should.
Overall, I find that the Q701 with HDP sounds very similar to the SRH940 with UDAC2 in terms of FULLNESS, DYNAMIC and MUSICAL. That says a lot for the value and versatility you can have with the SRH940. Q701's with UDAC2? Forget it. I find it lacking. Q701 unamped? You may as well not buy it.
One thing I find is that the Q701 seems to reproduce the sound the best. They are also VERY SMOOTH and relaxing yet not laid back. If I compare between the two, the SRH940 feels coloured and very treble-heavy, even though it presents more detail. It's hard to say: The Q701 makes every single song sound good, but the SRH940 makes some songs MUCH BETTER while some songs MUCH WORSE. Consistency vs inconsistency if that makes any sense.
I could buy two but I can't justify why I need two. It's not like one does certain genre better as I find both of them do many genres quite well. It's just that one is consistently 9/10 (Q701) and the other is inconsistently producing some 8/10 and some 10/10 (SRH940) in terms of musical satisfaction (or orgasm, as I would like to say it).
One thing I dislike from the Q701 is the bass. I find it lacking compared to the SRH940, and the 940 isn't even well known for its bass already. It is balanced and accurate, but it lacks the punch and dynamic low end that makes the music that much more engaging and exciting to listen to. Almost feels like my boring HD555 which I hate. Did I get that right or am I doing something wrong?
To me, the Q701 feels like a headphone I would put on and forget that I am listening to it if I am busy writing a paper or surfing the net, while the SRH940 would alert me to listen to the song and take a moment back and just close your eyes. That's the feeling I have between the two. But I would like to emphasize, they both seriously sound phenomenally excellent, unlike the AKG K550 and the Beyers DT990 (which I briefly tested today as well, I think I'm not a fan of dark signature).
There is one interesting note I would like to point out. I posted on Headfonia's Q&A and Mike mentions that the SRH940 has a more 3D soundstage than the K701 (similar to Q701) while the 701 is wider. Can anyone elaborate?
I find that nobody really compared the Q701's and the SRH940 even though they're both in the same price range, despite one being open and closed. Hopefully my insight would help some here!
So at the end, I'm still stuck. Anyone else have tried both the Q701 and SRH940 here as well?
Edited by dL. - 1/7/12 at 3:05am