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Major dissapointment with new AKG phones

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 

I'm not a very dramatic person but I am really, really upset about this.


I spent about 4 hours in Yodobashi camera in Japan testing many, many pairs of headphones with my preferred player
and music. Eventually I found a set that really suited me. I am sure they are not everyone's cup of tea, but for
me the AKG K172hd sounded wonderful. However they were the equivalent of $260 usd so I ordered them from the U.S. and
had them sent here. I was thrilled to plug them in and then met with incredible disappointment when the headphones
on my head were, more or less, missing about 30% of the bass response of the floor models at Yodobashi.
Though not a believer in break in, I tried running them for about 8 hours and I am not detecting much difference.
After about 5 minutes of research I discovered that AKG had switched the manufacturing of some of their headphones
to China in 2010 or 2011, of course assuring the customer that there was absolutely no difference whatsoever between
the Chinese and Austrian manufactured sets. I went back to the store today, and lo and behold, the store set that I loved
was in fact from a few years ago and made in Austria. I called the head office and it was reported to me that in light of
this information, I must have a defective set. That the Chinese and Austrian models are identical. But I am not so sure, and
since I am abroad it is not so easy for me to just send them back to the seller and buy a new pair. I don't know what to do
I don't mean to be childish, but I really loved what i heard that day and I thought I would get it. I didn't. Does anyone
have any experience with these headphones in both their iterations that could confirm any difference in bass response?
Does anyone have an original Austrian set that they would be willing to sell me for a good price (sorry, I am out the money
for the first set already)

Thanks much
 


Edited by Matt B - 5/21/12 at 8:35am
post #2 of 32

You'd better learn about burn in, AKG's are heavy in that department.

 

Run them in for over 200 hours then post back. Normally the bass will be the first thing that fixes up, lastly the highs.

 

Electronics burn in is debatable, but headphone burn in exists, and its effects are real.

 

My k242HD took well over 200 hours, and then it settled down and it was all good and then just one day, bang, the soundstage, and the airyness just went wow. 


Edited by WiR3D - 5/21/12 at 9:15am
post #3 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by WiR3D View Post

You'd better learn about burn in, AKG's are heavy in that department.

 

Run them in for over 200 hours then post back. Normally the bass will be the first thing that fixes up, lastly the highs.

 

Electronics burn in is debatable, but headphone burn in exists, and its effects are real.

 

My k242HD took well over 200 hours, and then it settled down and it was all good and then just one day, bang, the soundstage, and the airyness just went wow. 


+1 akg headphones need alot of burn in time

post #4 of 32

I think it's possible that there could be some differences between

the two headphones.  But I also think those differences would be slight.

Nothing like what you've described.

 

So, what comes to my mind are burn-in,

possibly a defective pair,

or possibly the source material and electronics

used at the store vs. what you're using.

post #5 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by zazex View Post

I think it's possible that there could be some differences between

the two headphones.  But I also think those differences would be slight.

Nothing like what you've described.

 

So, what comes to my mind are burn-in,

possibly a defective pair,

or possibly the source material and electronics

used at the store vs. what you're using.

I'm more inclined to believe this is what happened. OP what did you plug your AKG headphones into and what did the AKG at Yodobashi is plugged into? Built in headphone out usually doesn't cut it.

post #6 of 32
AKG did retune some of its models in recent years. For example, older k701 sound more musical while newer production sound more clinical . There are tons information floating around on the serial number range this change took effect. It really has nothing to do with being made in china but rather AKG decide to tune their headphone differently. For example, Q701,k702, k701 may all looked the same and have same parts, but they are tuned differently.
post #7 of 32

Welcome to the world of consumer electronics
 

post #8 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by psun786 View Post

AKG did retune some of its models in recent years. For example, older k701 sound more musical while newer production sound more clinical . There are tons information floating around on the serial number range this change took effect. It really has nothing to do with being made in china but rather AKG decide to tune their headphone differently. For example, Q701,k702, k701 may all looked the same and have same parts, but they are tuned differently.

 

True, but not a retuning which results in "missing about 30% of the bass response" as described by the OP

post #9 of 32

The material that the cones are made of is initially very stiff when new. As time goes by, or with burn in, the material with get a lot
more supple and respond better to music. You can compare it to a banknote. When it is new it is very stiff.

But after prolonged uses that note gets to be a lot more soft and flexible.

post #10 of 32

yeah Akg's do need burn in, but can't imagine it's going to add 30% missing bass...  its possible that the bass was upped on the media player in the shop? you never know..

post #11 of 32

Rather than headphone burn in, oftentimes it's simply the pad. Older pads soften and provide a better seal and brings the driver closer to the ear, which increases bass quite significantly. 

post #12 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

Rather than headphone burn in, oftentimes it's simply the pad. Older pads soften and provide a better seal and brings the driver closer to the ear, which increases bass quite significantly. 

I think its combination of both? I burn't mine in through usage, so they softened up while I used them, but its true, the seal the pad makes is vital to bass response in almost any headphone.

post #13 of 32

I've owned and auditioned several AKGs, vintage and modern alike. In a few instances I even got a chance to swap old/new pads. In my opinion, the pads make a bigger difference than any amount of driver burn-in. 

post #14 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Armaegis View Post

I've owned and auditioned several AKGs, vintage and modern alike. In a few instances I even got a chance to swap old/new pads. In my opinion, the pads make a bigger difference than any amount of driver burn-in. 

I agree with this. smily_headphones1.gif

It's also very hard to say "30% of response" or something like that without any sort of measurement or baseline. Did you even compare them A/B in the same location? redface.gif
post #15 of 32

Matt B

What DAC and amplifier are you currently using?

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