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The AKG K550 Appreciation/Discussion Thread! - Page 96

post #1426 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by ratinox View Post

Yeah, you don't need a dedicated headphone amplifier.

You might want to get an impedance adapter for use with the guitar amp and home stereo system but only if the maximum comfortable listening volume is below about 50% on the volume control.

 

I somewhat disagree. When I listen to the k550 through my Late 2012 MBP or Note 3 they are listenable but to me sound hollow and tinny. I think they really need some kind of amplification for maximum enjoyment.

 

Just adding in a CMOY made a night and day difference for me.

post #1427 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by CloudMoose View Post

Just adding in a CMOY made a night and day difference for me.

My experience is that CMOYs are slightly colored sounding amps.
post #1428 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbshas View Post
 

Hmm not sure I want an amp at the moment. Maybe I will save up for a really good one. Would you say these overall benefit from an amp? Is it necessary or can I wait a bit?

I would wait as long as you need/want to. They don't NEED to be amped, but you can hear an audible difference when they have excess power behind them. I love my Schiit Magni with them as well and that is only 100 bucks. I'd say get a pair and listen to them first. I'm sure you'll love them straight out of your Mac, but when you get a little less enamored and are wondering how to push them to their best, pick up a little amp.

post #1429 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by sludgeogre View Post
 

I would wait as long as you need/want to. They don't NEED to be amped, but you can hear an audible difference when they have excess power behind them. I love my Schiit Magni with them as well and that is only 100 bucks. I'd say get a pair and listen to them first. I'm sure you'll love them straight out of your Mac, but when you get a little less enamored and are wondering how to push them to their best, pick up a little amp.

Ok, I will do that. I suppose buying a good amp will help me out in the future, too. Thanks for the input.

post #1430 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by CloudMoose View Post

I somewhat disagree. When I listen to the k550 through my Late 2012 MBP or Note 3 they are listenable but to me sound hollow and tinny.

Yes, well, if you plug good headphones into inferior sources then of course they're going to sound bad. It's not that the cans need an amplifier; it's that you need better sources.
post #1431 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbshas View Post
 

How are these headphones for metal? I will be buying my first 'good' set of headphones, and I really like these. Currently I own Monster Diesel Vektrs, which are very muddy and bassy. They sound OK, but on some songs the mids and highs are completely drowned out by the lows. I have heard the K550 is bright, but will someone like me really notice it that much over the increase in general sound quality? Some bands I listen to include Tool, Bolt Thrower, Electric Wizard, Cryptopsy, Suffocation, Opeth, and Mastodon.

 

I know those bands well and have a pair of K550's.

 

One of my initial gripes with the sonic signature of the K550's was the slightly woolly midrange. It didn't feel as focused and natural as I would have liked, especially for the midrange-focused music I commonly listen to, which are all centred around guitar and vocal performances, both midrange instruments. I don't know whether it's because of that, but the sound of the cans can be a little sterile and unapologetic. I don't necessarily mean clear or precise, which they are, I mean to say that they are too harsh and clinical at times. However, the incoherency in the midrange did settle after a few weeks of burn in. My UE700 IEMs are clearer, but also warmer and more supple, which I prefer.

 

For Opeth, Mastodon, Tool, this is fine and not a major concern. The K550's have a tight bass with a subtle but incredibly beautiful sub bass that I love hearing in bands like Electric Wizard and YOB. It gives the sound a lushness that is often lost with the muddy midrange and clinical highs. A proper seal makes this even more evident and important. Also, a good amplifier and DAC will definitely improve their performance. They both add thickness and fullness that can be lost through a poorly sealed 'phone. Since I currently do not have access to a dedicated amplifier/DAC, I use an EQ to add a little low-mid bass and increase the volume. It helps fill in the gaps, especially for Doom.

 

Overall I'm happy with them, but I will be trying other headphones in the future. For a variety of applications, they are perfectly adequate and sound very good. However, if you want deep, lush bass then consider the V-Moda M100's. To be honest, though, I think you'll be better off with a 'better' (read: clearer) headphone like the K550 and a nice headphone amplifier and DAC. Make sure you're rocking lossless audio and you'll be set. Another option I didn't consider before buying the K550's are the SoundMagic HP100's. They supposedly have all the benefits of the AKGs, but with added bass texture and depth. I kinda wish I had gone for them, but like I said, I'm happy. Really, for me, open headphones are the way to go, but sadly I need the isolation.

post #1432 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by ratinox View Post


Yes, well, if you plug good headphones into inferior sources then of course they're going to sound bad. It's not that the cans need an amplifier; it's that you need better sources.


Define what you mean by better sources. :p

 

Do you mean purely a source? A source with an amplifier built in like many DACs? a DAP with a HP out designed to drive high impedance headphones?

 

Not trying to start a battle here, I was merely commenting on my experience using the K550 without external amplification because others brought it up.

 

I do have source and amplification equipment, I do enjoy listening to the K550 much more than I do without it.

 

On another note, going to be shortening the cable and making it removable as soon as some stuff comes in from Mauser next week. :beyersmile: 


Edited by CloudMoose - 5/1/14 at 9:36am
post #1433 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by AngryGoldfish View Post
 

 

I know those bands well and have a pair of K550's.

 

One of my initial gripes with the sonic signature of the K550's was the slightly woolly midrange. It didn't feel as focused and natural as I would have liked, especially for the midrange-focused music I commonly listen to, which are all centred around guitar and vocal performances, both midrange instruments. I don't know whether it's because of that, but the sound of the cans can be a little sterile and unapologetic. I don't necessarily mean clear or precise, which they are, I mean to say that they are too harsh and clinical at times. However, the incoherency in the midrange did settle after a few weeks of burn in. My UE700 IEMs are clearer, but also warmer and more supple, which I prefer.

 

For Opeth, Mastodon, Tool, this is fine and not a major concern. The K550's have a tight bass with a subtle but incredibly beautiful sub bass that I love hearing in bands like Electric Wizard and YOB. It gives the sound a lushness that is often lost with the muddy midrange and clinical highs. A proper seal makes this even more evident and important. Also, a good amplifier and DAC will definitely improve their performance. They both add thickness and fullness that can be lost through a poorly sealed 'phone. Since I currently do not have access to a dedicated amplifier/DAC, I use an EQ to add a little low-mid bass and increase the volume. It helps fill in the gaps, especially for Doom.

 

Overall I'm happy with them, but I will be trying other headphones in the future. For a variety of applications, they are perfectly adequate and sound very good. However, if you want deep, lush bass then consider the V-Moda M100's. To be honest, though, I think you'll be better off with a 'better' (read: clearer) headphone like the K550 and a nice headphone amplifier and DAC. Make sure you're rocking lossless audio and you'll be set. Another option I didn't consider before buying the K550's are the SoundMagic HP100's. They supposedly have all the benefits of the AKGs, but with added bass texture and depth. I kinda wish I had gone for them, but like I said, I'm happy. Really, for me, open headphones are the way to go, but sadly I need the isolation.

Thanks for the input. I am thinking I will grab the K550s as my first really good set if headphones. Since I was blown away by a set of Monsters I got a couple years ago, these should blow me out of the water. Interesting rec about the Soundmagic HP100s, I own the E10s and absolutely love them for on the go use. The bass is very tight and punchy which is what I like, without overpowering anything else. A very good set of earbuds for $35, better than my old Klipsch S4s which cost me 3x as much. 

post #1434 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by urbshas View Post
 

Thanks for the input. I am thinking I will grab the K550s as my first really good set if headphones. Since I was blown away by a set of Monsters I got a couple years ago, these should blow me out of the water. Interesting rec about the Soundmagic HP100s, I own the E10s and absolutely love them for on the go use. The bass is very tight and punchy which is what I like, without overpowering anything else. A very good set of earbuds for $35, better than my old Klipsch S4s which cost me 3x as much. 

 

Yeah, the SoundMagic stuff seems like great value for money. I think the K550's are an excellent place to start. They're affordable, well made, comfortable, sound good, and they're easy to find.

post #1435 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by CloudMoose View Post

Define what you mean by better sources. tongue.gif

I mean something that isn't a pile of compromises. Smartphones, tablets, notebooks, they're all little boxes of compromises that excel at nothing. If adding a headphone amplifier makes your smartphone sound better then it's not because the headphones need the amp. It's because the amp in the smartphone is one of many compromises inside that box. If you're going to spend money on more electronics anyway then spending that money on a better player is a better way to spend your money.
post #1436 of 1835
I can't believe how much of a difference adding some extra padding and bending the head band made such a difference. I can now find the right fit so much easier. Now the character doesn't change whether or not I'm pressing on the phones or not.

One thing I noticed is that it is an order of magnitude harder to do with my glasses on. Does anyon else have problems getting a good seal while wearing glasses?
post #1437 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by jellowiggler View Post
One thing I noticed is that it is an order of magnitude harder to do with my glasses on. Does anyon else have problems getting a good seal while wearing glasses?

I gave up trying to wear glasses with them. Doesn't work. Maybe if you had really, really thin frames.

post #1438 of 1835

Bah!  My head band broke after 4 days of ownership.  Now I'm really ticked.

 

The shop i just bought them from won't take them back.  So now I have to deal with Harmon/AKG.  I've already been though 4 numbers that weren't the right place/country to call.  Where do you call for Canada consumer support?!

post #1439 of 1835
How did you break the headband? It seems so sturdy...
post #1440 of 1835
Quote:
Originally Posted by sludgeogre View Post

Maybe if you had really, really thin frames.

I wear mine with glasses, but the arms of my glasses fit very close to the sides of my head so they don't interfere with the seal. Being very thin titanium alloy does help, though.
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