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post #196 of 315

I know this is going to sound dumb but....I think the Q701 is still kind of underrated compared to most headphones here.

I think most people think it's just a green clone of the K702 and has no change in it's sound.

 

BTW someday I need to try the SR-125. It's the poor Grado that seems to be ignored by nearly everyone.

Fingers crossed that it's about 95% similar to the SR-225i, but probably not. I loved the 225i, but disliked the 325i and 325is.

 

Also..the old HD-580 deserves more attention despite having the HD-600 driver. Sounds better IMO. I guess it's because it's discontinued. Well, duh.

Maybe the HD-580 is getting incredibly rare, but I doubt it.

 

Lately i've been suggesting people track one down instead of buying the $399(!!!) HD-600. Save yourself $250.

 

K501 is also very underrated. I miss mine, but once I got my Q701 I felt I didn't need it anymore. I'd take the K501 over the K702, but not the Q701.

post #197 of 315
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post

I know this is going to sound dumb but....I think the Q701 is still kind of underrated compared to most headphones here.

I think most people think it's just a green clone of the K702 and has no change in it's sound.

 

BTW someday I need to try the SR-125. It's the poor Grado that seems to be ignored by nearly everyone.

Fingers crossed that it's about 95% similar to the SR-225i, but probably not. I loved the 225i, but disliked the 325i and 325is.

 

Also..the old HD-580 deserves more attention despite having the HD-600 driver. Sounds better IMO. I guess it's because it's discontinued. Well, duh.

Maybe the HD-580 is getting incredibly rare, but I doubt it.

 

Lately i've been suggesting people track one down instead of buying the $399(!!!) HD-600. Save yourself $250.

 

K501 is also very underrated. I miss mine, but once I got my Q701 I felt I didn't need it anymore. I'd take the K501 over the K702, but not the Q701.

 

Honestly, after AKG's partnership with Quincy Jones, I think pretty much all AKG's are a little underrated. Head-fi really seemed devastated by the move (god knows why) and AKG never really bounced back. I swear, it seems like most of Head-fi regards them as equal to Beats and Skullcandy. There was a point where I'd see oodles of recommendations for K240's, K701's, K81's, etc, and now I just don't see that anymore.

post #198 of 315
I disagree. I see the AKGs recommended all the time and especially the QJ models. So much so that I would never consider them underrated and I haven't even heard them yet haha.
post #199 of 315
Quote:

Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post


BTW someday I need to try the SR-125. It's the poor Grado that seems to be ignored by nearly everyone.

Fingers crossed that it's about 95% similar to the SR-225i, but probably not. I loved the 225i, but disliked the 325i and 325is.

The SR-125 is oft regarded as inferior to the other headphones in their line, with many feeling that it's the only product from Grado that doesn't astound. I had no such feelings when trying a pair out at the local hi-fi shop a number of months ago, but everyone has a different opinion on them.

post #200 of 315
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kukuk View Post

Honestly, after AKG's partnership with Quincy Jones, I think pretty much all AKG's are a little underrated. Head-fi really seemed devastated by the move (god knows why) and AKG never really bounced back. I swear, it seems like most of Head-fi regards them as equal to Beats and Skullcandy. There was a point where I'd see oodles of recommendations for K240's, K701's, K81's, etc, and now I just don't see that anymore.

I think the issue is that AKG didn't rush ahead in pushing out a $1500 flagship to go play at insanity with Beyer, Senn, and Ultrasone. And that somehow devalues them in the eyes of popular consensus. The K701 used to be IMMENSELY popular, but the combination of the oft-repeated power mythology associated with it, and how "cheap" they are compared to the competition, turns a lot of would-be buyers away imho. Koss headphones, on the whole, experience a similar phenomenon - people see sub-$500 pricetags and assume it must be all fud, "because Beyer has $700 headphones, and Sennheiser has $1000 headphones" and so on. Instead of looking at it that those cans are over-priced, they see them as a standardized bar that somehow Koss, AKG, Shure, Etymotic, etc aren't stacking up to. Back to the whole "price determines quality" (and I've seen many newbies chain themselves to this argument and virulently attack experienced members who suggest less expensive but good performing cans).

Now, I'm not saying the K701 is the end-all of headphones, but given that it is legitimate competition for the HD 600/650 and DT880, and costs less than either, that's at least a reasonable case for it. For whatever reason people don't see it that way though - they elevate the 650 and 880 to some "higher plateau" and want to lump the 701 in with (as you said) Beats and other ~$300 offerings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ssrock64 View Post

The SR-125 is oft regarded as inferior to the other headphones in their line, with many feeling that it's the only product from Grado that doesn't astound. I had no such feelings when trying a pair out at the local hi-fi shop a number of months ago, but everyone has a different opinion on them.

I've never even seen an SR-125 in person, they're elusive! tongue.gif
post #201 of 315
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post


I think the issue is that AKG didn't rush ahead in pushing out a $1500 flagship to go play at insanity with Beyer, Senn, and Ultrasone. And that somehow devalues them in the eyes of popular consensus. The K701 used to be IMMENSELY popular, but the combination of the oft-repeated power mythology associated with it, and how "cheap" they are compared to the competition, turns a lot of would-be buyers away imho. Koss headphones, on the whole, experience a similar phenomenon - people see sub-$500 pricetags and assume it must be all fud, "because Beyer has $700 headphones, and Sennheiser has $1000 headphones" and so on. Instead of looking at it that those cans are over-priced, they see them as a standardized bar that somehow Koss, AKG, Shure, Etymotic, etc aren't stacking up to. Back to the whole "price determines quality" (and I've seen many newbies chain themselves to this argument and virulently attack experienced members who suggest less expensive but good performing cans).
Now, I'm not saying the K701 is the end-all of headphones, but given that it is legitimate competition for the HD 600/650 and DT880, and costs less than either, that's at least a reasonable case for it. For whatever reason people don't see it that way though - they elevate the 650 and 880 to some "higher plateau" and want to lump the 701 in with (as you said) Beats and other ~$300 offerings.

 

I can definitely agree with this as being part of it. Another obvious example of this would be cables, but thankfully Monoprice Cable popularity is on quite the upswing. biggrin.gif

post #202 of 315

I also vote the AKG K240 studio and in the same vein since they are almost the same, the K240mkII, and K242HD especially at there current prices. which is ridiculous.

 

They just really need a good amp.

post #203 of 315
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post


I think the issue is that AKG didn't rush ahead in pushing out a $1500 flagship to go play at insanity with Beyer, Senn, and Ultrasone. And that somehow devalues them in the eyes of popular consensus. The K701 used to be IMMENSELY popular, but the combination of the oft-repeated power mythology associated with it, and how "cheap" they are compared to the competition, turns a lot of would-be buyers away imho. Koss headphones, on the whole, experience a similar phenomenon - people see sub-$500 pricetags and assume it must be all fud, "because Beyer has $700 headphones, and Sennheiser has $1000 headphones" and so on. Instead of looking at it that those cans are over-priced, they see them as a standardized bar that somehow Koss, AKG, Shure, Etymotic, etc aren't stacking up to. Back to the whole "price determines quality" (and I've seen many newbies chain themselves to this argument and virulently attack experienced members who suggest less expensive but good performing cans).
Now, I'm not saying the K701 is the end-all of headphones, but given that it is legitimate competition for the HD 600/650 and DT880, and costs less than either, that's at least a reasonable case for it. For whatever reason people don't see it that way though - they elevate the 650 and 880 to some "higher plateau" and want to lump the 701 in with (as you said) Beats and other ~$300 offerings.

 

I don't know I do agree that the lack of a top tier flagship has caused some loss, and its the same in the automotive world, the ability to have a top tier product is a demonstration of technological ability and the desirability of these products feeds into the lower end sales.

 

But on the other note when you have people leaving Harmon Kordon and calling it Harmon Cardboard then you know they are cutting corners. and the AKG K242HD and K142HD I have both feel utterly cheap, and I think the only reason the K242hd is good is because its just more cost cutting and a relabel. I really do think its run by execs and thats why there current headphones just aren't "finished" products, there is something amiss with each one. even the New K550 apparently (yet to confirm myself)

 

I think they shot themselves in the foot but not putting in the extra money/time that was needed to perfect their products, and released them when they were "good enough" and cost "little enough"

post #204 of 315

Nothing new (post-Harman acquisition) for AKG, cost-cutting. The whole sound port thing (the six holes surrounding the driver in a lot of AKG's headphones) was a cost-cutting measure started in the late 70s from a more involved mechanism. The 80s K 260 feel horribly flimsy and cheap despite supposedly being a better version of the K 240 Monitor; and the designs for the K 270 and K 290 from the 80s/90s seem to have been thrown together from parts from earlier models of the 70s. Not to mention the K 240 cup design that has constantly been reused for about 40 years.

post #205 of 315
Quote:
Originally Posted by WiR3D View Post

 

I don't know I do agree that the lack of a top tier flagship has caused some loss, and its the same in the automotive world, the ability to have a top tier product is a demonstration of technological ability and the desirability of these products feeds into the lower end sales.

 

But on the other note when you have people leaving Harmon Kordon and calling it Harmon Cardboard then you know they are cutting corners. and the AKG K242HD and K142HD I have both feel utterly cheap, and I think the only reason the K242hd is good is because its just more cost cutting and a relabel. I really do think its run by execs and thats why there current headphones just aren't "finished" products, there is something amiss with each one. even the New K550 apparently (yet to confirm myself)

 

I think they shot themselves in the foot but not putting in the extra money/time that was needed to perfect their products, and released them when they were "good enough" and cost "little enough"

 

I'm afraid I don't follow your logic with your first point. They don't have an overpriced headphone, so people will think their fairly priced headphones are bad?

 

I also don't get your unfinished product remark. I've owned a few headphones from AKG (K81's, K271's, and K601's) and used others by them, and at no point did I think they were missing something, or felt cheap. They seemed pretty standard as far as build quality goes, actually. And sonically, they are strong performers among headphones in higher price ranges. The K601's compare very fairly against the HD600's, which on the used market runs easily twice what the K601's do. The K271's to me compare nicely to the Sennheiser HD-25's and Beyerdynamic DT1350's, and again, fall well below their prices.

post #206 of 315
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kukuk View Post

 

I'm afraid I don't follow your logic with your first point. They don't have an overpriced headphone, so people will think their fairly priced headphones are bad?

 

That's the point. That people think this even though it's illogical. 

post #207 of 315
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post
I think the issue is that AKG didn't rush ahead in pushing out a $1500 flagship to go play at insanity with Beyer, Senn, and Ultrasone. And that somehow devalues them in the eyes of popular consensus. The K701 used to be IMMENSELY popular, but the combination of the oft-repeated power mythology associated with it, and how "cheap" they are compared to the competition, turns a lot of would-be buyers away imho. Koss headphones, on the whole, experience a similar phenomenon - people see sub-$500 pricetags and assume it must be all fud, "because Beyer has $700 headphones, and Sennheiser has $1000 headphones" and so on. Instead of looking at it that those cans are over-priced, they see them as a standardized bar that somehow Koss, AKG, Shure, Etymotic, etc aren't stacking up to. Back to the whole "price determines quality" (and I've seen many newbies chain themselves to this argument and virulently attack experienced members who suggest less expensive but good performing cans).
Now, I'm not saying the K701 is the end-all of headphones, but given that it is legitimate competition for the HD 600/650 and DT880, and costs less than either, that's at least a reasonable case for it. For whatever reason people don't see it that way though - they elevate the 650 and 880 to some "higher plateau" and want to lump the 701 in with (as you said) Beats and other ~$300 offerings.

 

To me, AKG cans always seemed rather popular, but it could partly be because of Mad Lust Envy's ravings about them. One of these days, I'll have to audition the K701/K702 and Q701 to find out if they're indeed "AD700s on steroids", without the bass deficiency of the AD700 and lower cost and amp requirements than a typical Stax Lambda setup.

 

As for Koss, if anyone thinks they're cheap? ESP/950. I once saw it sell for $350 on eBay (including E/90), but most of the time nowadays, it's $500-600, and the MSRP itself is $1,000. You'd think people would take notice if for no other reason than the price tag, but I guess they passed it up because it's electrostatic, and a non-Stax electrostatic at that.

 

Back to AKG: another part of it is that the K701 and its kin have a reputation for being insensitive, meaning you need a good amp to get the most out of them. Maybe people factor that into the overall cost and think the DT880 is much more sensitive (especially the 32-ohm version, even though impedance is one small part of the sensitivity equation), and thus won't need as expensive of an amp to back it. That wouldn't excuse the HD 600/650, though, which is considered just as insensitive. In that case, I think it's more of a matter of sound signature preference, with the Sennheiser models appealing more to bassheads.


Edited by NamelessPFG - 7/21/12 at 2:14pm
post #208 of 315
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kukuk View Post

 

I'm afraid I don't follow your logic with your first point. They don't have an overpriced headphone, so people will think their fairly priced headphones are bad?

 

I also don't get your unfinished product remark. I've owned a few headphones from AKG (K81's, K271's, and K601's) and used others by them, and at no point did I think they were missing something, or felt cheap. They seemed pretty standard as far as build quality goes, actually. And sonically, they are strong performers among headphones in higher price ranges. The K601's compare very fairly against the HD600's, which on the used market runs easily twice what the K601's do. The K271's to me compare nicely to the Sennheiser HD-25's and Beyerdynamic DT1350's, and again, fall well below their prices.

On the first point, its an illogical association that people do. 

 

On the other, yes they get some right, but how many have something or other thats wrong with them? Generally a product will have a baseline performance at a price and then an advantage or 2 over its rivals, but some AKGs (K142, K701, K550) have a baseline performance with one or 2 ISSUES which is what leads me to the unfinished remark.

post #209 of 315
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kukuk View Post

I'm afraid I don't follow your logic with your first point. They don't have an overpriced headphone, so people will think their fairly priced headphones are bad?

Yeah, that's the point, unfortunately. Look up the history of "Halo Cars" to get an idea of what is going on - it's silly and childish, but Ford has turned profits for something like 60 years based on that kind of marketing and thinking. So there's something to it. redface.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by NamelessPFG View Post

To me, AKG cans always seemed rather popular, but it could partly be because of Mad Lust Envy's ravings about them. One of these days, I'll have to audition the K701/K702 and Q701 to find out if they're indeed "AD700s on steroids", without the bass deficiency of the AD700 and lower cost and amp requirements than a typical Stax Lambda setup.

As for Koss, if anyone thinks they're cheap? ESP/950. I once saw it sell for $350 on eBay (including E/90), but most of the time nowadays, it's $500-600, and the MSRP itself is $1,000. You'd think people would take notice if for no other reason than the price tag, but I guess they passed it up because it's electrostatic, and a non-Stax electrostatic at that.

Back to AKG: another part of it is that the K701 and its kin have a reputation for being insensitive, meaning you need a good amp to get the most out of them. Maybe people factor that into the overall cost and think the DT880 is much more sensitive (especially the 32-ohm version, even though impedance is one small part of the sensitivity equation), and thus won't need as expensive of an amp to back it. That wouldn't excuse the HD 600/650, though, which is considered just as insensitive. In that case, I think it's more of a matter of sound signature preference, with the Sennheiser models appealing more to bassheads.

The ESP/950 is a weird duck - they're relatively unknown, and because Koss is associated with $10 headphones you get at Wal-mart, most people will write them off without a second thought (I also think they're unavailable in most places outside of the US unless you're willing to put in some time).

Regarding the sensitivity thing - it's all mythological. The HD 600/650 are FAR more sensitive, the DT 880 is somewhere in the middle. The K701 are half as sensitive as the RS-1 - and that's it. I think the entire source of the myth is that back in the day people had very crappy amplifiers (headphone amps by and large haven't really improved, but thanks to TI and Maxim we have some SoC stuff that is really good) or drove everything raw from their iPods. And when you have a belief system that bases loudness/sensitivity/quality/etc based on relative volume control positions (which is bunk), the K701 become this unslayable dragon.

To be completely candid, my portable (which isn't an iPod) will drive the K701 all day, and they sound no better or worse than driven from a 200wpc amplifier (tell me I was underamping them with that!).

It's just one of those nonsense myths, like Grados only being for rock, or Bose being (simultaneously (I love Bose myths because they're so incoherent and foamy)) bass boosted and bass-less. rolleyes.gif

Measured data to back up what I just said:
http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/BeyerdynamicDT88032ohm.pdf
http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/AKGK701.pdf
http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/SennheiserHD600.pdf
http://www.innerfidelity.com/images/GradoRS1.pdf
http://audiokarma.org/forums/showthread.php?t=58829

And going off the concept of the last one, indeed, my PDP (and amps) require a higher "level" for the K701 relative to the HD 580/600 (this assumes the amp is invariant enough that we don't care about the Znom difference - if Znom isn't satisfied you get an interesting FR screw-up or clipping, it's very apparent).

Regarding AKG in general - that seems to be the problem with most Harman products. They do the research and know the score, but seem to have no issues neglecting that and turning out fairly awful products. At one time, Harman had one of the best internal amplifier testing regimens out there, and now it's just like everyone else - throw a huge number on the box and screw it.
Edited by obobskivich - 7/23/12 at 9:10am
post #210 of 315
Quote:
Originally Posted by obobskivich View Post


Yeah, that's the point, unfortunately. Look up the history of "Halo Cars" to get an idea of what is going on - it's silly and childish, but Ford has turned profits for something like 60 years based on that kind of marketing and thinking. So there's something to it. redface.gif

 

Might be so, but I still want one.

 

 

Off Topic (Click to show)

 

700

 

 

Oh you mean, flagship cars? I don't care much about those, but I see your point.

 

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