This weekend I've got the chance to compare the AKG K702 (Mogami cable) with the Beyerdynamic T1 (balanced).
I'll not go too much into history of those great companies, maybe just a quick reminder...
The K-702 is the studio version of a long AKG headphones line that started with the 301, 401, 501, 601, 701.
The T1 (Tesla) is the Beyerdynamic headphones flagship. I like how they named their flagship headphones after Nicolae Tesla (I'm a big fun, and here is more info about the man and the legend : http://members.chello.nl/e.n.secasiu/Tesla.htm).
The equipment used in this session,
Apogee Mini DAC
Beyerdynamic T1( balanced )
AKG K-702 ( Mogami W2534 cable )
HagUsb > AES
Sommer cable galileo 238 plus. Nutrix XLR balanced cable.
WAV, and FLAC.
The K-702 are made of plastic and looks a bit cheap compared to the metallic T1 that feel more sturdy ( the angle drivers looks great ).
The T1 have a smaller cups compare to the K-702 both feel very comfy, and no problems for me with the bumps on the bottom of the headband.
My session with both hps was mostly on the Apogee mini DAC> V800 > Phonitor, on this high level rig the sound transparency play a big factor, I mean with a minimum coloration on the rig you'll be able to pure focus on the sound and of course this will emphasis and bring out the hps sound character.
Both hps show a great resolution over the sound spectrum, sound stage almost the same...maybe a small advantage to the K-702 by 10-to15%. I was impressed with the T1 sound depth, looks like Beyer fixed the sound depth issue that I've dislike with the 880's.
In this session the K702 sounds to me more natural and balanced, because I found a audible spike in the upper mid lower treble of the T1, with my album Rabbit Dream (electronic music) you can hear some treble sparkles over the hi-hats. as well with other music materials I can easy spot this spike almost in the same area. it also show up on headroom graph.
Mids, both hps perform great...the vocals sounds with a bit more present with the K702.
Lower mids, the headroom graph show few more db with on the T1, but I didn't find any problem with that in this session.
Bass, you can easy hear the boost on T1, most of the session I had fun with that...until I played my last mastering track... was hard for me to get the a good sound separation between the 60hz-to-125hz that I use to get out of the K702. The sound was more glued together with the T1, maybe most of the peoples will find it warm, or pleasant... but I running a mastering business and I need this separation in the bass.
Conclusions, I prefer the tonality of the K702. I'm okay with the T1 bass boost, but not with the treble boost.
Recommendations, If you have the T1, this is cool just get the Auditor or the Phonitor. If you dont have the T1... get the K702, or the Q701 and the Auditor for the same price as the T1.
To my surprise the Phonitor XLR balanced out can drive well a balanced T1, the sound was great the bass got tight...but you'll need to be careful with the volume of the foobar player, the volume needs to be at 20% for the start point .There is no way to control the level volume coming out from the Phonitor, the XLR out is even strong for the 300ohm of the T1.
This was my personal experience, and I hope you enjoyed the read.
Edited by Acix - 10/17/12 at 1:08pm