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Q701 impressions thread - Page 152

post #2266 of 7697

Watts per channel would be the rating at the speaker terminals, not the headphone jack. Getting as much power as possible to your speakers is always a good idea though. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tkdiamond08 View Post

 

Thanks derbigpr! Do I have to worry about watts per channel or ohms / impedence on receivers with these headphones?

 

Appreciate you helping a noob out :)

post #2267 of 7697

Just got some lime green Q701s as an early Christmas present. I haven't had much time with them yet, but I'm pretty excited. Currently I'm driving them from my mom's Denon receiver, though unfortunately I'm hitting the road starting tomorrow and I'll probably only have an E6 to amp them. Anyway, this seemed like the proper place to express my excitement.

post #2268 of 7697
Quote:
Originally Posted by tkdiamond08 View Post

 

Thanks derbigpr! Do I have to worry about watts per channel or ohms / impedence on receivers with these headphones?

 

Appreciate you helping a noob out :)

 

Nah, don't worry about specs at all until you hear the device. Plug in the headphones and listen to them, if you like how they sound, specs are irrelevant. I went on a little quest earlier this years trying out as many amps and receivers as I could to test out their headphone outputs, since almost everyone was claiming their headphone outputs are bad and are only an afterthought. Well, WRONG.

I ended up listening to about 20 of them in the <500$ range, from Yamaha, Denon, Marantz, Onkyo, HK, Nad, Pioneer, etc. ALL had excellent headphone outputs that sounded great with high and low impedance headphones. Amps sounded slightly better than receivers (Onkyo, Denon and Marantz had the best sounding headphone outputs), and they pretty much all sounded as good or better than the dedicated DAC/head amps that I had tested at the time as well, Asus Essence One, Teac UD-H01 and CA Dacmagic+.

 

At the end I ended up buying an Onkyo A-5VL amp with an integrated DAC without knowing a single piece of spec about it. I bought the thing purely on listening experience, haven't heard of it before I entered the store, never read a single review on it. And that's how everyone should buy their gear, don't read reviews, try it, compare it in the store, don't believe anyone on the internet, especially not official magazines, you never know how much they get paid when they get a review unit. Don't even believe me now, go into a store and try it for yourself.

All receivers / amps I tested had plenty of power for any headphones I tried them with (DT880 600 ohm, Q701 and HD650, so all impedances covered).  What all receivers and amps had in common in terms of sound was musicality, punch and size. I don't know how to explain it, but all headphones sounded "bigger", I guess the soundstage was bigger, bass was punchier and more voluminous (probably due to lower damping factor) and music just sounded nicer, somehow more coherent and just more involving. I guess that's what you get when you buy a real properly engineered audio component, instead of paying 500$ for a small aluminum case the size of your palm with less than 100$ worth of components inside, which lets face it, is what you get with most dedicated head amps these days.  After getting this 22 pound heavy amp which has so many inputs, sounds excellent with speakers and headphones, is built like a tank, looks and feels expensive, has a top of the line Burr Brown 24/192 DAC inside, bi-wiring possibility, etc. and all that for 400$, I just cant justify buying a head amp or dedicated DAC.  I look at my Little Dot MkV and Onkyo A-5VL, and I think to myself, how is it legal that these two things cost the same?

 

My favorite receivers were:

Onkyo NR509

Marantz NR1602

 

And integrated amps:

Onkyo A-5VL (which I ended up buying as I felt it was best overall in terms of sound/cost/features)

Marantz PM5004

Denon PMA720AE


Edited by derbigpr - 12/22/12 at 5:04am
post #2269 of 7697
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicolom View Post

 

+1   I can hear things I can't hear on some other headphones, like reverb decaying in a room or sympathetic resonance on a piano. But it isn't a detail monster in the say way something like a DT990 is, where it etches out every breath to the point it's annoying.  (BTW, to me DT990 is much closer to what I would consider "treble region screaming in your face."  No offense DT990)

 

What impressed me about the Q701's treble was that it maintained a touch of warmth while still sounding detailed, which is balance that is rare from my experience.  It's dialed back just past the part where you hear excessive air/breathiness, sibilance, graininess, etc (more than you would in real life).  I don't want to hear that stuff, and I don't with the Q701 - which is why it sounds natural to me.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by discombob View Post

 

Amen.

These are two of my favorite attributes of the Q and why they are the accidental champions of value.

 

I also thought the soundstage seemed perhaps too big until I heard a few higher end phones, including the HD800.  Now I know that this is just a general trait of most "Hi-Fi" circumaural headphones and have learned to very much enjoy it after brain burn in.

 

Double plus one.

Very well put guys!

 

It really comes down to: do you like the Q701s.

If you do, then you probably love them.

If you don't you probably hate them.

 

BTW, I have a pair of ATH-ESW10.

I need to sell them, They just don't work for me! YMMV.

post #2270 of 7697
Quote:
Originally Posted by derbigpr View Post

 

Nah, don't worry about specs at all until you hear the device. Plug in the headphones and listen to them, if you like how they sound, specs are irrelevant. I went on a little quest earlier this years trying out as many amps and receivers as I could to test out their headphone outputs, since almost everyone was claiming their headphone outputs are bad and are only an afterthought. Well, WRONG.

I ended up listening to about 20 of them in the <500$ range, from Yamaha, Denon, Marantz, Onkyo, HK, Nad, Pioneer, etc. ALL had excellent headphone outputs that sounded great with high and low impedance headphones. Amps sounded slightly better than receivers (Onkyo, Denon and Marantz had the best sounding headphone outputs), and they pretty much all sounded as good or better than the dedicated DAC/head amps that I had tested at the time as well, Asus Essence One, Teac UD-H01 and CA Dacmagic+.

 

At the end I ended up buying an Onkyo A-5VL amp with an integrated DAC without knowing a single piece of spec about it. I bought the thing purely on listening experience, haven't heard of it before I entered the store, never read a single review on it. And that's how everyone should buy their gear, don't read reviews, try it, compare it in the store, don't believe anyone on the internet, especially not official magazines, you never know how much they get paid when they get a review unit. Don't even believe me now, go into a store and try it for yourself.

All receivers / amps I tested had plenty of power for any headphones I tried them with (DT880 600 ohm, Q701 and HD650, so all impedances covered).  What all receivers and amps had in common in terms of sound was musicality, punch and size. I don't know how to explain it, but all headphones sounded "bigger", I guess the soundstage was bigger, bass was punchier and more voluminous (probably due to lower damping factor) and music just sounded nicer, somehow more coherent and just more involving. I guess that's what you get when you buy a real properly engineered audio component, instead of paying 500$ for a small aluminum case the size of your palm with less than 100$ worth of components inside, which lets face it, is what you get with most dedicated head amps these days.  After getting this 22 pound heavy amp which has so many inputs, sounds excellent with speakers and headphones, is built like a tank, looks and feels expensive, has a top of the line Burr Brown 24/192 DAC inside, bi-wiring possibility, etc. and all that for 400$, I just cant justify buying a head amp or dedicated DAC.  I look at my Little Dot MkV and Onkyo A-5VL, and I think to myself, how is it legal that these two things cost the same?

 

My favorite receivers were:

Onkyo NR509

Marantz NR1602

 

And integrated amps:

Onkyo A-5VL (which I ended up buying as I felt it was best overall in terms of sound/cost/features)

Marantz PM5004

Denon PMA720AE

Interesting. How would your receiver compare to a O2/ODAC set up(on headphones only of course)? Just wondering, since I have the O2, and you can purchase the O2 + ODAC for under the cost of a decent receiver AFAIK. People claim the O2 amp(ODAC, too) is very transparent....a 'straight wire with gain' type of amp. 

post #2271 of 7697
Quote:
Originally Posted by derbigpr View Post

 

Nah, don't worry about specs at all until you hear the device. Plug in the headphones and listen to them, if you like how they sound, specs are irrelevant. I went on a little quest earlier this years trying out as many amps and receivers as I could to test out their headphone outputs, since almost everyone was claiming their headphone outputs are bad and are only an afterthought. Well, WRONG.

I ended up listening to about 20 of them in the <500$ range, from Yamaha, Denon, Marantz, Onkyo, HK, Nad, Pioneer, etc. ALL had excellent headphone outputs that sounded great with high and low impedance headphones. Amps sounded slightly better than receivers (Onkyo, Denon and Marantz had the best sounding headphone outputs), and they pretty much all sounded as good or better than the dedicated DAC/head amps that I had tested at the time as well, Asus Essence One, Teac UD-H01 and CA Dacmagic+.

 

At the end I ended up buying an Onkyo A-5VL amp with an integrated DAC without knowing a single piece of spec about it. I bought the thing purely on listening experience, haven't heard of it before I entered the store, never read a single review on it. And that's how everyone should buy their gear, don't read reviews, try it, compare it in the store, don't believe anyone on the internet, especially not official magazines, you never know how much they get paid when they get a review unit. Don't even believe me now, go into a store and try it for yourself.

All receivers / amps I tested had plenty of power for any headphones I tried them with (DT880 600 ohm, Q701 and HD650, so all impedances covered).  What all receivers and amps had in common in terms of sound was musicality, punch and size. I don't know how to explain it, but all headphones sounded "bigger", I guess the soundstage was bigger, bass was punchier and more voluminous (probably due to lower damping factor) and music just sounded nicer, somehow more coherent and just more involving. I guess that's what you get when you buy a real properly engineered audio component, instead of paying 500$ for a small aluminum case the size of your palm with less than 100$ worth of components inside, which lets face it, is what you get with most dedicated head amps these days.  After getting this 22 pound heavy amp which has so many inputs, sounds excellent with speakers and headphones, is built like a tank, looks and feels expensive, has a top of the line Burr Brown 24/192 DAC inside, bi-wiring possibility, etc. and all that for 400$, I just cant justify buying a head amp or dedicated DAC.  I look at my Little Dot MkV and Onkyo A-5VL, and I think to myself, how is it legal that these two things cost the same?

 

 

While I will agree 125% with your statement that you really have to trust your own ears, you can't always (never?) trust reviewers, and you really have to try stuff yourself to see if you like it there are a few things we differ on.

Technically, it bothers me that a lot of these receivers have headphone jacks with output impedances form 100 Ohms to 470 Ohms, but if it sounds good to the listener, what can I say.

I have a Bryston power amp with a headphone jack, output impedance 120 Ohms.........it doesn't do it for me.

 

The reason why Little Dots, etc are so expensive relative to Onkyo or Yamaha etc. is just sheer volume of sales.

Yamaha sells a lot more receivers than Little Dot vacuum tube headphone amps or Camabridge dedicated desktop DACs (which most people really buy for the DAC only, not the headphone amp).

The ratio is well in excess of 100 to 1 Yamaha to Little Dot. Probably closer to 1000 to 1.

And I wouldn't assume that a small headphone amp manufacturer does not properly engineer their stuff.

Guys like Arcam, Cambridge and Audiolab probably spend more relative $ on R&D than Yamaha, Onkyo, etc.

Personally I do not want a large receiver or integrated amp on my desk so I can listen to headphones.

In addition, I also like vacuum tube headphone amp............well, sometimes I do. They are always stupid expensive, one tube costs a lot more than one Op Amp.

 

YMMV, feel free to disagree, it's just my opinion.

post #2272 of 7697
Quote:
Originally Posted by derbigpr View Post

 

Nah, don't worry about specs at all until you hear the device. Plug in the headphones and listen to them, if you like how they sound, specs are irrelevant. I went on a little quest earlier this years trying out as many amps and receivers as I could to test out their headphone outputs, since almost everyone was claiming their headphone outputs are bad and are only an afterthought. Well, WRONG.

I ended up listening to about 20 of them in the <500$ range, from Yamaha, Denon, Marantz, Onkyo, HK, Nad, Pioneer, etc. ALL had excellent headphone outputs that sounded great with high and low impedance headphones. Amps sounded slightly better than receivers (Onkyo, Denon and Marantz had the best sounding headphone outputs), and they pretty much all sounded as good or better than the dedicated DAC/head amps that I had tested at the time as well, Asus Essence One, Teac UD-H01 and CA Dacmagic+.

 

 

You, Sir deserve a medal. It is very refreshing that there are down to earth people here who listen to things for themselves, rather than believe hype. Some people here are so entrenched in their views that they actually think that they know better than you do. They will tell you that you are mistaken if what you say you hear does not agree with their pre-conceptions. I say they are idiots and I say that the only ears to trust are your own. An integrated amplifier with a headphone output makes perfect sense. You can even drive hard to drive cans from the speaker outputs and use the other pair of speaker outputs for your speakers!

 

That Onkyo is awesome, it is well made, functional and it has a remote. How many of these silly headphone amps and dacs look like they were put together on someone's kitchen table, have no connectivity apart from what is absolutely necessary, NO REMOTE and cost an absurd amount of money for what is on offer? If people like to spend their money on that kind of thing, fine. Just don't ask me to understand it.

 

k701smile.gif


Edited by Hooster - 12/22/12 at 1:24pm
post #2273 of 7697
Glad to hear other people have enjoyed the sound driven by A/V receivers, since I've been planning to listen to mine through my Yamaha as a starting point.
post #2274 of 7697
Thread Starter 

Never had the Q701 sound bad from a receiver.. I have an Onkyo and previously tried the K702 with my old Yamaha.

The latest receiver I have is one from a thrift store I paid $30 for. It's an old Technics from 1993 and in perfect condition. 330 ohm output impedance and don't ask me how, but the Q701 sounds perfectly fine with it.

I used it for gaming for a few hours. No random weirdness going on with it's sound signature..don't ask me how.

 

I bet if you're broke you can even find a decent old full sized CD player with headphone jack that might even drive the Q701 well enough. I like the easy to find JVC models from the early 90s. I want to find one though with a Digital Optical connection.

I also have a 5 disc Technics that's not as good, but a little more detailed (or so it seems). This JVC I have actually sounds better than most Ipods and gives some serious competition to my ODAC. I only paid about $25 for it (which is probably more than it's worth).

post #2275 of 7697

Re: 330 ohm output impedance, Q701 impedance is pretty constant up to 10KHz, the little boost you get after that might even be a plus.
 

post #2276 of 7697

Hey folks,

I started a new thread, are you a treblehead or a basshead or a flathead or a.............:

http://www.head-fi.org/t/642455/are-you-a-basshead-or-a-treblehead-or-a-midrange-head-a-flathead-or#post_8983027

 

No judgement, just some fun! Come on out, vote and share your opinions.

Cheers, CJ

post #2277 of 7697

What does this even mean? If the impedance is constant, than output impedance does not matter?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmers View Post

Re: 330 ohm output impedance, Q701 impedance is pretty constant up to 10KHz, the little boost you get after that might even be a plus.
 

post #2278 of 7697
Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonb View Post

What does this even mean? If the impedance is constant, than output impedance does not matter?

 

The higher the output impedance, the higher the losses you will have in your headphone amp.

99.9 % of all headphone amplifiers are actually voltage sources, an ideal (or perfect) voltage source will have zero output impedance.

Lower output impedance means your headphone amplifier is working more efficiently.

 

That is one thing that troubles me about using a vintage receiver as a headphone amplifier; they are not very efficient.

 

This is basic electicity & electronics.

post #2279 of 7697

Buying these from Ebay means I'll have no warranty right?

post #2280 of 7697
Quote:
Originally Posted by McNuggetsPie View Post

Buying these from Ebay means I'll have no warranty right?

Shouldn't be a problem as long as you make sure that they're an authorized AKG dealer.

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