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AKG K550 Review. - Page 5

post #61 of 328

Hello,

 

I have the K550s and think they're great HPs! I found this case (was used for hair clippers) to be a good fit for the K550s 

 

K550 1.JPGK550 2.JPG

post #62 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by kfscoll View Post

Not only that but getting a good seal is vitally important with the K550s.  The first time I heard about the importance of a good seal with the K550s I thought "yeah, right."  However, I experienced it myself last weekend.  I wear glasses from time to time and put the K550s on such that the pads were over my glasses.  There was absolutely no bass to speak off -- in fact, it was so bad I thought my headphones were broken.  Once I realized what I'd done, I took my glasses off and all of the K550s' bass goodness was back.

 

I had K702s briefly and, while the highs and mids were great, the 'phones sounded positively anemic to me because of their thin bass response.  Now, I'm not a bass head, but the K702s took bass thinness to a whole new level.  The K550s fix all of that and, as a result, are a much more well-rounded headphone IMO.

You are very right.  The seal is probably the most important part with these headphones.  When I put mine on I level out the cups and push them against my head.  I get almost like a suction feeling on my ears.  Doing this gives me a good seal with decent isolation.

 

I have also noticed that the seal increases the longer I wear the K550s.  It seems that the earpads warm up while being worn and become softer after a short while.

 

I have even entertained the thought of bending the headband just a bit so these sit just a bit tighter on my ears.  I am holding off on that for now as they really are very comfortable and I don't want to mess that up.

post #63 of 328

The earcups are to soft, and the clamping pressure is not enough, that equals bad seal.  There are much better HP for $300, i gave these every chance.

post #64 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundfreak33 View Post

The earcups are to soft, and the clamping pressure is not enough, that equals bad seal.  There are much better HP for $300, i gave these every chance.

For a closed headphone with a great soundstage, I am dying to know what these other headphones are since I am in the market for such a headphone and the AKG K550 is difficult to get in Canada. I have the feeling we just all have bigger heads up here. Protects our brains from the cold.

Only other ones I know are the DT770 600ohm, and ATH-A900X.

post #65 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hailin View Post

For a closed headphone with a great soundstage, I am dying to know what these other headphones are since I am in the market for such a headphone and the AKG K550 is difficult to get in Canada. I have the feeling we just all have bigger heads up here. Protects our brains from the cold.

Only other ones I know are the DT770 600ohm, and ATH-A900X.

 

Not just closed, but one that isolates well.

post #66 of 328

I have been reading a lot of threads on these (K550) lately.  Seems those that like them have larger heads and get a good seal with the cups.  That 100 page abomination has some good info at the beginning but quickly goes to hell.  This one is off to a good start...

 

I received my K550's a couple days ago and let them burn in for about 30 hours so far.  I was surprised by the fit-- I have a larger than average noggin and these fit great.  The cups seem giant, however they seal very nicely over my ears.  I had read another review where the reviewer could feel pressure on his eardrums when pressing them to his head.  I can feel the same.  The cups are very comfortable for me, albeit a little warm.

 

I started listening to a wide variety of music, Apple lossless from a Nano through a Fiio E11.  Sounded good to me, but not great.  Bass was there, and sounded quite good.  Not as heavy as the Denon D2000's, but I wasn't wanting more.  Mids were much more present, and I liked the highs.  I certainly wasn't blown away and started thinking about some Denon's again.

 

Plugged them into my Asgard, and played some tracks via Windows Media lossless.  Again, sounded good.  Then Clapton's Tears in Heaven from the Unplugged album came on.  Holy crap!  I heard breathing and foot tapping I've never heard before.  That track sounded fantastic!  Went with some Norah Jones, Alison Krauss, Jonny Lang.  Call me impressed!  

 

I want to let these burn in a bit more, and I'm waiting on a Bifrost and a Decco to arrive.  Thus far however, I really like these cans.  Will report back after a couple weeks...  

post #67 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by fastev View Post

I have been reading a lot of threads on these (K550) lately.  Seems those that like them have larger heads and get a good seal with the cups.  That 100 page abomination has some good info at the beginning but quickly goes to hell.  This one is off to a good start...

 

I received my K550's a couple days ago and let them burn in for about 30 hours so far.  I was surprised by the fit-- I have a larger than average noggin and these fit great.  The cups seem giant, however they seal very nicely over my ears.  I had read another review where the reviewer could feel pressure on his eardrums when pressing them to his head.  I can feel the same.  The cups are very comfortable for me, albeit a little warm.

 

I started listening to a wide variety of music, Apple lossless from a Nano through a Fiio E11.  Sounded good to me, but not great.  Bass was there, and sounded quite good.  Not as heavy as the Denon D2000's, but I wasn't wanting more.  Mids were much more present, and I liked the highs.  I certainly wasn't blown away and started thinking about some Denon's again.

 

Plugged them into my Asgard, and played some tracks via Windows Media lossless.  Again, sounded good.  Then Clapton's Tears in Heaven from the Unplugged album came on.  Holy crap!  I heard breathing and foot tapping I've never heard before.  That track sounded fantastic!  Went with some Norah Jones, Alison Krauss, Jonny Lang.  Call me impressed!  

 

I want to let these burn in a bit more, and I'm waiting on a Bifrost and a Decco to arrive.  Thus far however, I really like these cans.  Will report back after a couple weeks...  

 

Thanks for these impressions.  Seems like nicer sources really help.  Getting mine this weekend to try out with my Rocoo BA and will use them on a flight next weekend!

post #68 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by fastev View Post

I have been reading a lot of threads on these (K550) lately.  Seems those that like them have larger heads and get a good seal with the cups.  That 100 page abomination has some good info at the beginning but quickly goes to hell.  This one is off to a good start...

 

I received my K550's a couple days ago and let them burn in for about 30 hours so far.  I was surprised by the fit-- I have a larger than average noggin and these fit great.  The cups seem giant, however they seal very nicely over my ears.  I had read another review where the reviewer could feel pressure on his eardrums when pressing them to his head.  I can feel the same.  The cups are very comfortable for me, albeit a little warm.

 

I started listening to a wide variety of music, Apple lossless from a Nano through a Fiio E11.  Sounded good to me, but not great.  Bass was there, and sounded quite good.  Not as heavy as the Denon D2000's, but I wasn't wanting more.  Mids were much more present, and I liked the highs.  I certainly wasn't blown away and started thinking about some Denon's again.

 

Plugged them into my Asgard, and played some tracks via Windows Media lossless.  Again, sounded good.  Then Clapton's Tears in Heaven from the Unplugged album came on.  Holy crap!  I heard breathing and foot tapping I've never heard before.  That track sounded fantastic!  Went with some Norah Jones, Alison Krauss, Jonny Lang.  Call me impressed!  

 

I want to let these burn in a bit more, and I'm waiting on a Bifrost and a Decco to arrive.  Thus far however, I really like these cans.  Will report back after a couple weeks...  

If you happen to play any video games, let me know how these perform.

post #69 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by crzycuyler View Post

If you happen to play any video games, let me know how these perform.

 

No games, sorry...

post #70 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by crzycuyler View Post

If you happen to play any video games, let me know how these perform.

would like to know that too, thanks

 

LE: ok, so i bit the bullet and ordered these from amazon de, with shipping included 194 euros, hope they reach soon :)

 

also i hope i will enjoy them with music, videos and gaming


Edited by eroarex - 7/15/12 at 4:21am
post #71 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by eroarex View Post

would like to know that too, thanks

 

LE: ok, so i bit the bullet and ordered these from amazon de, with shipping included 194 euros, hope they reach soon :)

 

also i hope i will enjoy them with music, videos and gaming

 

Wear them in and test out the gaming experience for me. What games do you play?

post #72 of 328

I think I figured out why people have a love or hate relationship with these headphones!!!

 

 

But before breaking it down, let me just summarize my background and first experiences with these cans:

 

I bought the k550 recently to replace my HD600. I also own a Sennheiser HD212 and a HD555.

I'm practically a Sennheiser guy, but wanted to try something new.

I've been making electronic music for more than a decade and although I'm not a professional, I have some experience with mixing and EQing.

I needed an accurate headphone that is closed so that I can listen to it at work. (latter's the rationale behind me getting rid of the HD600).

 

When I first put the k550s on, I didn't get a good seal, I cranked up the volume and I absolutely HATED the sound.

The bass was weak so I tended to increase the volume, but the harsh spike at the lower treble (approximately between 2-4KHz) just irritates the ear. It's just there where others explained.

 

Then I got some solutions the second day:

 

BAD FIT/SEAL: if you have a narrow head, you'll have a bad fit/seal. PERIOD.

SOLUTION: gently bending the headband. It fixes the seal issues without deforming the headband.

 

HARSH TREBLE SPIKE: it's only there when you crank up the volume!!!

SOLUTION: I left the k550 on for the night giving it some pink noise and I think the irritating spike somewhat decreased, thus burning the headphone might decrease/solve the problem. However, it may sound ridiculous but actually really good solution is just not cranking up the volume that high.

 

If listened to it at moderate volumes, the description given by people who love these cans fits perfectly:

It's recessed, extremely balanced, has nice spatial "resolution."

These headphones have recessed, somewhat quiet, but definitely not weak bass. This goes deeper than I've ever heard with headphones. HOWEVER, if you define basshead as a person who enjoys basses that would cause cardiac arrhytmia coming from speakers, then these are DEFINITELY NOT BASSHEAD HEADPHONES.

It's also ruthlessly revealing, especially on vocals. This can be annoying for those used to the mainly flattering sound of Sennheisers, but it can also be very useful for mixing.

 

My theory is that the k550 will be liked or hated based on the grounds of music listening habits:

 

If you are a BASSHEAD or someone who's used to listening to music at high volumes you'll probably hate it.

If you enjoy a well balanced, revealing sound and listen to music at moderate levels you'll probably love it.

post #73 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by d3r1d3x View Post

 

If you are a BASSHEAD or someone who's used to listening to music at high volumes you'll probably hate it.

If you enjoy a well balanced, revealing sound and listen to music at moderate levels you'll probably love it.

 

Agreed.  I don't think I've ever heard headphones like these for acoustic, especially guitar.  To my ears they are simply amazing.  Another track I really enjoy is Audioslave's 'Like a Stone'.  The reverb at the beginning is spectacular.

post #74 of 328

I recently started using portable headphones at the office, after having picked up a pair of the M80s.  I've used many regular cans at the office, but they either A) required an amp, or B) had cables way too thick and cumbersome to be lugging around the office. 

 

If my job called on me to stay put for long periods of time, the other cans wouldn't have been a problem.  Unfortunately, I'm constantly getting up and down, in/out of the office, etcetera, and removing my cans on a regular basis became a chore.

 

So I quit with headphones and went with a speaker-based system for a pretty long while.

 

I tend to leave head-fi for a while, only to return at some point.  Seems routine by now.

 

So when I got the M80's, I was in the market for cans that can easily be driven by an mp3 player, without an amp, and also something that I could leave on my head as I went about my work.  The M80's fit the bill to a T.  They sounded pretty good, ergonomically were damn near perfect, the cable was just right in length and I absolutely loved their removable cable design.  Not to mention they're quite handsome cans!

 

But you know how you begin to wonder about other cans...

 

Read this and other reviews of the 550s and thought I'd give them a try. 

 

Just got them on Monday, and from moment one, I felt these to be wonderful cans!  Sound quality is just plain superb!  Bass, mids, treble, spaciousness...I mean, I was like, "Wow!" 

 

But that superb sound quality is a dual-edged sword.  I've been using my Zune 120 filled with music from Zune Pass.  I love it for the fantastic variety it allows me to download.  Unfortunately, the quality leaves much to be desired.

 

With the M80s, this really wasn't much of an issue for me.  They're really nice sounding cans, but very colored at the same time.  The bad recording quality wasn't as noticeable.  The 550's?  Yeah, no.  I sometimes find I'm unable to listen through the poor quality of the Zune downloads.  Not all downloads are bad, but there seems to be enough of them that it gets a bit annoying.  So with the 550s' I'm almost forced to listen to my iPod with lossless music, which is not entirely a good thing as I really dig the new stuff I've discovered on the Zune. 

 

I only wish AKG would have used a four foot cable with 1/8" plug as opposed to giving me enough cord length to damn near walk around my office, dragging the cable around.  And why would they design the headphones to be able to swivel and lay flat but have it facing outward if you're wearing it around your neck?  Seems to me that they should have designed it to turn into my shoulder area, protecting the drivers rather than having them face the world.

 

Let's face it, all headphones are technically "portable" but some more so than others.  M80 (and their lot)..portable.  K550's (and most other full-sized cans)...not really.  I think they might work for my office environment, but I can't see myself ever wearing them outside.  Since I got them from Headroom, I can play around with them for a few weeks to see if they work.  They sound so good I might stick with them.  But then, maybe not.

 

BTW, I returned the M80s yesterday (turned out I had 15 days to return and was on day 15).  As I sit here typing, I miss them a bit.  I liked everything about them until I heard the 550's.  The AKG's are geared more to my sonic preferences than the V-Moda's.  But it's not really a fair comparison.  Easily driven full-sized cans versus truly portable cans. 

 

I wish the M80's had the K550's sound. 

 

1350's, maybe?

 

Cheers, all.

 

Edit:  I picked up the M80's again.  Missed their sound with a less than stellar source/recordings.  Okay...I guess I kind of just missed them, period.  It's almost a ying/yang between the two.   


Edited by AudioDwebe - 7/24/12 at 2:51pm
post #75 of 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by AudioDwebe View Post

I only wish AKG would have used a four foot cable with 1/8" plug as opposed to giving me enough cord length to damn near walk around my office, dragging the cable around.  And why would they design the headphones to be able to swivel and lay flat but have it facing outward if you're wearing it around your neck?  Seems to me that they should have designed it to turn into my shoulder area, protecting the drivers rather than having them face the world.

 

 

You can braid the cable to make it shorter. Fold it into thirds and braid as normal, feeding the loose end through the loops as necessary to prevent twisting. If done right, it looks nice and doesn't do any damage to the cable. 

 

As for the cups facing the wrong way, this is because they were designed as DJ headphones where they're meant to lay flat on a table when a DJ takes them off. 

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