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AKG K702 65th Anniversary Edition - Page 69

post #1021 of 3282

Great review!

post #1022 of 3282

Weeee! I just got my annies, and we all know what that means! ( especially given this very "controversial" headphone, if you'd like to call it that)

 

REVIEW TIME!

 

K701 (8-hump) vs K702 65th

 

Some background first:

Warning: I will label this as my FIRST "in-depth" review. I hope that you don't assume that means I have no experience, and still weigh my opinion as much as you would those who have written many more reviews. I know this happens, because I use to do it  tongue.gif. I mean, I can't be the only one, right?

Though I will be honest in saying that I don't have as much experience as said people, However, that shouldn't be a concern for this review, since I will be directly comparing my opinions on the  K701 to the 65th.

 

So, As I have been avidly lurking this thread, It seems many are at odds concerning the sound-signature, and the perceived difference by users, and the threat/ fear of over-hype/hyperboles. Considering the lack of scientific analysis, as well as the lack of (in-depth) reviews on a non-65 vs 65, I thought I'd throw my 2 cents in. Of course, I boarded this train due to the hype, but as soon as some one presented a logical refute to some one elses opinion (not naming names here), I thought that the best approach would be a skeptical one(we know how crazy placebo can get here), though I was bordering on pessimistic (especially after initial looks). Basically, I was fully prepared to return/sell these off, instead of justifying my purchase. That was my mindset going in.

 

Test Rig ( if you can call it that):

PC->NFB-12-> HP

 

I understand the lack of "High-quality" gear, but once again, that shouldn't be a concern since it will only mean that my variables are limited(non-existent). And to my knowledge, amps don't/shouldn't change signals in an exponential pattern. I think it would be safe to assume that my amp is not playing magic tricks and increasing a certain frequency on one headphone than the other.

 

PICTURES! ( Physical impressions:)

 

POW! Out the box, I had to immediately compare the looks to the K701.

 

"Huh, they look nice...buuuuut.....I don't know."

So, I was pretty underwhelmed. The 3D render, as well as the professional photographs of the 65th made it look like it was made of aluminum or really nice plastic or something. Turns out, it's a lot of plastic, and very cheap feeling too. The K702 label on the side isn't even metal, I had imagined they would at least coat it in some kind of metal then glue that sucker on, but it's literally just painted over with silver. It's not even shiny...it's like a matte silver. I mean, come on, you can't blame my expectations considering these are supposed to be Limited 65th anniversary editions. Heck, Grado had Gold cups for their anniversary, and I can't even get a chrome badge.

 And then, I thought I could lift my spirits with the *ahem* new *ahem* comfortable headband. Once again, slightly disappointed. I was anticipating the odd "wave" shape, but was expecting it to be roughly the same size, but man, that's quite a bit thinner.

 

My last gripe is the cable thickness. The cables are a lot thinner and flimsier than the Originals. Now I don't have any good way of accurately measuring the thickness, so I tried my best with this ghetto comparison using lined paper. They key thing is to look at the distance from the top blue line to the wire. Hopefully, you can see the difference. Either way, they are thinner than the originals, enough to be disappointing and noticeable.

 

At this point, disappointment is an accurate portrayal for what I was feeling. A good way to start a sound review, if I don't say so myself.

 

SOUND!:

Enough of what I thought about the headphones! That doesn't matter at all! This is what you have been waiting for! Everything else was just a lengthy prologue of irrelevant mumbo-jumbo!

 

Prologue: ( You thought it was over, didn't you)

So as I entered the 65th anniversary abyss, I walked without fear, for I was prepared for any possible outcome. Or so I thought. As I put them on and began listening, These were my thoughts:

(Note that there was no burn-in. This is fresh out the fish market.)

 

"*internal  giggles* Man, I love AKG. These sound really nice. But from my memory, I would say these are the exact same as my K701's."

 

Of course, I couldn't leave it there. So I began my strenuous, Heart-wrenching A-B testing. Tears were shed. As was blood. The day grew long and dark. My family began to fear what I had become. A fiend. A beast. A Monster.

 

I jest. It happened instantly.

 

"OH MY GOD WHAT IS GOING ON? SOMETHING'S WRONG WITH MY EARS. WAIT, WHAT. NO SOMETHINGS-WHAT AM I-WHO IS- WHERE-"

 

That one isn't a joke. I was freaking out. It was different. Too different. No. Must remain skeptical.*cue rapid A-B testing on many favorite songs*

Now I'm freaking out, wondering if it really is different, or my brain placebo is too strong. Here enters the secret weapon. My Dear Mother.

 

Seeing as she is not an audiophile in the least, has little experience with headphones and Hi-fi systems in general, but a great love for (classical) music, I thought she was a perfect candidate. I sat her down, picked her a song, she went to her CD player, played some classical, and lo' and behold, we came to the same conclusion.

 

Impressions:

So here it is, the final impression. There's definitely, positively, more low-end. Let's get into details, before I start some controversy myself. Also, remember these are all COMPARISONS.

 

I'd like to specifically note the song I listened to:  Blind guardian - The Bard's song( In the forest). Here's a link to the best video I can find on youtube:

http://youtu.be/FE8EyKpyodw

 

I listed this song so maybe others later, or now, can see what I mean if they have both headphones. Both present the vocals nearly the same. The  K701's sounded slightly clearer though. This is because the K701 are evidently more treble based in comparison to the 65th. We're speaking relative here though, and here's why. The treble are nearly the same on both. However, as I found with great surprise, the 65th indeed has a general, noticeable, increase in bass. In fact I went as far as testing them against the K240 MK II. They're sound signature were almost identical. More so than the K701. I must note though, that the 65th's were superior in every way to the K240's, the sound signature being the only thing that was similar.

I'd like to specifically mention around ~1:24 in the link. There is a mini 10-or-so second guitar solo, which when compared between the K701 and 65th, sound completely different. I mean this trying my best to prevent a hyperbole. The K701 registers the high-end, and you end up with a "bright" solo. Whereas with the 65th, you get the extra mid-bass which makes it warmer, and less harsh.I am not afraid to say that they indeed, in that snippet, sound nothing alike. The soundstage is also presented differently, in that the K701's sound more distant when compared to the 65th, and that the 65th feels like you're in a concert hall, where the bass seems to echo across the halls. My mother agreed with this when she pointed out " The black ones make me feel like I'm at a classical concert hall!". I'd like point out that otherwise, the vocals and high-end sound mostly identical with small differences that One can easily deem placebo.

 

My hypothesis at this point was that they had increased the mid-bass+low-mids presence, but the deep end was still the same. To test this I used Gramatik - liquified.

This song has essentially one bass pattern and that's a wubwubwub. Turns out the entire low-end is generally emphasized. The wubwub is nearly the same, but the kick in the back is more prominent with the 65th. This bass boost was very evident also in classical music, namely <find out song name from mother>. My first time listening to the song, both my mother and I took turn A-B'ing, and we both came to the conclusion that the 65th definitely had more low-end.

 

CONCLUSION:

So, I have personally verified that the 65th has a more prominent low-end. It helps that my mother has also verified the same pattern. What does this mean? Is the 65th better? Should no one ever buy K701? I think this was best put by my mother:

 

"But you know, these(K701) aren't bad either. The (65th) are better for me, because I enjoy the more bassy instruments in an orchestra. The (K701) is probably better for people who like violins for example.There both good, but I like the black ones better."

 

That pretty much sums it up. Both are great headphones, but the K701 is for people who enjoy more of the higher side, and the 65th are for people who enjoy the lower side. By no means does one sound more "analytical" or "colder" than the other. The Entire/Overall difference is the addition of bass. Simple as that. They are both what I would deem "warm", but the 65th is just more so because of the extra bass.

 

If I could also add my own, very personal, opinion, I would say the 65th are smoother, since the bass increase gives the general sound a thicker or fuller sound.

Also, I cannot stress enough, especially to new comers, that this entire review was a comparison. The sound of the 65th relative to the K701. I do not mean to say that the 65th is bass heavy compared to all other headphones, only relative to each other. I just want to clear any and all mis-understanding that might arise from this review, because many of us all too often generalize the reviewers impression as absolute. I learned that lesson the hard way.

 

Hopefully, this will help settle some discussion. Whether it does or not, I leave a happy man, left un-scarred by hype, and un-bruised from dissapointment.

post #1023 of 3282
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2enty3 View Post

Weeee! I just got my annies, and we all know what that means! ( especially given this very "controversial" headphone, if you'd like to call it that)

 

REVIEW TIME!

 

 However, as I found with great surprise, the 65th indeed has a general, noticeable, increase in bass.

 

So, I have personally verified that the 65th has a more prominent low-end.

 

Hopefully, this will help settle some discussion.

 

Thanks for the Review.

 

Whats your serial number? popcorn.gif

 

I don't know why there is any "controversy" over whether a headphone with memory foam pads has more bass than a headphone without memory foam pads. 

 

It's not magic, voodo, rocket science, etc. people....

post #1024 of 3282
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2enty3 View Post

 

REVIEW TIME!

 

Thanks for another great review! And best regards for your Dear Mother ;D

post #1025 of 3282
Quote:
Originally Posted by chicolom View Post

 

Thanks for the Review.

 

Whats your serial number? popcorn.gif

 

I don't know why there is any "controversy" over whether a headphone with memory foam pads has more bass than a headphone without memory foam pads. 

 

It's not magic, voodo, rocket science, etc. people....

From what I can tell, the controversy is surrounding the notion that the anniv edition is improved in many more ways than boosted bass relative to non-anniv AKGs. 

post #1026 of 3282

Static 15 seconds in or listen for 15 seconds and tell you if there's static?   I'm not hearing any static after one minute in, just Ellie Goulding being awesome.  Maybe you're picking up some interference somewhere?

post #1027 of 3282
Quote:
Originally Posted by HelIish View Post

Can someone do me a favor and tell me if they hear a weird rumbling static noise in the right ear,

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QLbRpObZFGQ&t=0m41s

 

listen for about 15 seconds (some of you may have to up the volume), my DT990 & HD650 do not have this might be the frequency

 

You're not talking about the sound effect walking from left to right and back that occurs multiple times within the first minute of that song, are you? That sounds a bit like static to me but is definitely part of the song. Did not hear anything else static-like (used a DT770 AE though ;-)

post #1028 of 3282
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2enty3 View Post

Weeee! I just got my annies, and we all know what that means! ( especially given this very "controversial" headphone, if you'd like to call it that)

 

REVIEW TIME!

 

K701 (8-hump) vs K702 65th

 

 

 Thanks for a great review. It mirrors my experiences. 

post #1029 of 3282

The main problem with the K/Q701/2 series, for me, was not the bass but the treble peaks.

 

The bass was down 5db at 20hz, which was room for improvement, but they were hardly "broken", audibly flat from 40-50hz up.

 

The thing is, those peaks at around 2k and 10k can very easily be fixed with a little felt/cotton judiciously placed under the pads (search "Friend or Foe" mod) - but as AKG just don't seem willing to fix it themselves a lot of people write these otherwise excellent models off. 

 

I can't believe AKG does not have the measuring equipment to R&D those peaks away perfectly with some simple adjustments to the existing filter, and have an extremely high quality headphone at a very fair price. With these headphones modded to remove the peaks they compete with the very best at a much lower price. I don't get why AKG won't fix it.

post #1030 of 3282
Edit: wrong thread. My apologies.
Edited by jontornblom - 1/29/13 at 5:31am
post #1031 of 3282
2enty3, please do us a favor and swap the pads, to see if the K701 sounds like the Annie, and vice versa. Need to know if the pads are what changes the sound completely, or if they retuned the drivers as they stated. Also, I know you're not happy with the headband's size, but I find the smaller contact area much more appreciable, and the headband is infinitely more conforming to one's head shape, not forgeting to mention the huge comfort boost of not having bumps.

So it seems that the bass is the main difference. Not surprising. However the addition of bass does tend to make things smoother overall. Like the D7000, the bass tends to linger a little, warming up the sound to my ears. Something that definitely doesn't happen with the older models. As is the rule of audio, when you emphasize something, something else will be lessened. As is typical with bass boosts, either mids or treble will be lessened. Wouldn't surprise me if it's the uppermid/treble range that is audibly lessened, as that is how I hear it. That's why the upper mids don't seem fatiguing to me now.

I wish I had the newer K701, which seems to be quite improved over the old 7 bump version I owned. That one was...ugh. The Q701 was quite a leap in enjoyment over that old K701.
Edited by Mad Lust Envy - 1/29/13 at 9:46am
post #1032 of 3282
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad Lust Envy View Post

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xy3T6FrDP0&list=PL7B271D4B511CFD37

The bass on this track is very impressive on the Annie. I highly doubt the non-Annies can produce it as faithfully.


Today I was bored and tested all my headphones in the bass and especially low-bass, including this song.

 

Strangely enough this above song sounds nearly identical on my HD-650, Q701 and KRK KNS-8400 (supposedly ruler flat down to sub-bass).

 

The K601 had a bit more mid-bass, but except for that, it sounded closer to the KRK KNS-6400 in tonality. Despite it's mid-bass, I think this and the KNS-6400 are the most accurate.

 

The HD-650 and K601 seem to have similar amounts of mid-bass, but the 650 was closer to how the Q701 and KNS-8400 sounded.

 

Oh and the DJ100 had much more present low bass than either of them. It's slightly boosted bass compared to the rest. If I listened to this type of music, i'd pick this one. Assuming I wanted very close to neutral bass, but slightly elevated.

 

Obviously i'd not be using the Q701 if I only listened to stuff like what's found in the track above. With the Q701 I didn't feel anything was missing. Just not as present.

 

I know this is a bit off-topic, but I'll get the Anniversary one day, but I thought it'd be interesting to try it with my Q701 and other similar headphones.

 

I'm pretty shocked the K601 sounded bassier for this song than the Q701. It sounded closer to MY HD-650, but with more treble.

 

What I need to find is some more electronic music with very low sub-bass that is close to being absent on the HD-650/Q701. I've found some acoustic music actually that falls into this category confused_face_2.gif

 

BTW with that song above  I swear I felt bass in my feet/toes/floor when using the DJ100 only. What the heck? Must be my brain fooling me. I should remember the time this occurred in the recording. I remember listening to some Tony Bennett stuff (!) and I swear I was hearing bass outside my headphone. It's like I felt I had to take off my headphones and look around! Yeah..low bass in a Tony Bennett CD. Got it for free and it sounds good on warm headphones with a nice soundstage.


Edited by tdockweiler - 1/29/13 at 11:46am
post #1033 of 3282
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdockweiler View Post


Today I was bored and tested all my headphones in the bass and especially low-bass, including this song.

 

Strangely enough this above song sounds nearly identical on my HD-650, Q701 and KRK KNS-8400 (supposedly ruler flat down to sub-bass).

 

The K601 had a bit more mid-bass, but except for that, it sounded closer to the KRK KNS-6400 in tonality. Despite it's mid-bass, I think this and the KNS-6400 are the most accurate.

 

The HD-650 and K601 seem to have similar amounts of mid-bass, but the 650 was closer to how the Q701 and KNS-8400 sounded.

 

Oh and the DJ100 had much more present low bass than either of them. It's slightly boosted bass compared to the rest. If I listened to this type of music, i'd pick this one. Assuming I wanted very close to neutral bass, but slightly elevated.

 

Obviously i'd not be using the Q701 if I only listened to stuff like what's found in the track above. With the Q701 I didn't feel anything was missing. Just not as present.

 

I know this is a bit off-topic, but I'll get the Anniversary one day, but I thought it'd be interesting to try it with my Q701 and other similar headphones.

 

I'm pretty shocked the K601 sounded bassier for this song than the Q701. It sounded closer to MY HD-650, but with more treble.

 

What I need to find is some more electronic music with very low sub-bass that is close to being absent on the HD-650/Q701. I've found some acoustic music actually that falls into this category confused_face_2.gif

 

BTW with that song above  I swear I felt bass in my feet/toes/floor when using the DJ100 only. What the heck? Must be my brain fooling me. I should remember the time this occurred in the recording. I remember listening to some Tony Bennett stuff (!) and I swear I was hearing bass outside my headphone. It's like I felt I had to take off my headphones and look around! Yeah..low bass in a Tony Bennett CD. Got it for free and it sounds good on warm headphones with a nice soundstage.


You should try some Supertramp on those DJ100, either Crime or Breakfast.....  Snag original pressings or MFSL's...  Heavenly!!!!    ok back to 701/2/ANNIE

post #1034 of 3282
I tried one of the DJ100s at Best Buy's musical intruments section. That pleather is a major turn off. I won't get anything that is pleather/leather. Just...can't. Besides I listen to my clip-ons at work, because they're somewhat discreet. Can't wear no full-sized.

I'm a huge fan of Koss though. They do know their bang for buck.

I was mildly impressed by the UR55 though Koss has the tendency to cater to small heads. The UR55 and UR40 are extremely tight fits on my head.
Edited by Mad Lust Envy - 1/29/13 at 1:20pm
post #1035 of 3282

Mine just arrived, #896.  Sounds nice (bass very nice) right out of box (using my Mogami homemade cable). First thing I noticed was that they feel more secure on your head than my old 702s (3d pads) due to the band and the memory foam's fit around my ears. Very nice. Gonna burn them in for awhile.  The seller on Amazon's price keeps bouncing around.. feel lucky that I caught them at $409.. don't think I'd love as much at $499, but mostly cause I'm broke!

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