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AKG K 271 MK II or Shure SHR940?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Hey there, I'm trying to find the perfect headphones for me, and so far I have narrowed my options to these two cans: the AKG K 271 MK II and the Shure SHR940. I've already seen the unboxings and the features of both headphones on youtube, so I only need you to explain me the differences regarding:

 

1) Sound quality (neutrality, bass, clarity, etc.)

 

2) Build quality

 

3) Comfort

 

4) Which cables are better (because the AKGs have a mini XLR plug, while the Shure have a 1/8 inch to 1/8 inch plug)

 

5) I couldn't find the Shure's tech specs, so if you know where to find them let me know

 

I like a rather neutral headphone, but I don't mind if the bass is somewhat extended (if it doesn't decrease the clarity). Price is not a problem.

 

Thanks for the help!!!

post #2 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by kingcrimson69 View Post

1) Sound quality (neutrality, bass, clarity, etc.)

 

2) Build quality

 

3) Comfort

 

4) Which cables are better (because the AKGs have a mini XLR plug, while the Shure have a 1/8 inch to 1/8 inch plug)

 

5) I couldn't find the Shure's tech specs, so if you know where to find them let me know

 

I like a rather neutral headphone, but I don't mind if the bass is somewhat extended (if it doesn't decrease the clarity). Price is not a problem.

 

 

Heya,

 

The K271MKII is neutral, small mid-bass hump, not overly bright, but not dull, otherwise, quite flat and dry sounding. The SRH940 is very bright, lots of treble, great mids, a better sound stage, mid-bass is very anemic and shy, though sub-bass is similar at least, but overall it sounds like a very anemic/thin headphone, even compared to the K271MKII.

 

Build quality wise, the AKG is going to hold up longer. The SRH940 has this annoying spring system in the cups for turning that will wear out over time and the plastic is just not that durable, it scratches easy too.

 

Both are comfortable. Both have access to velour pads (the K271 comes with both pleather & velour). Some people find the SRH940 headband to be a little uncomfortable. I didn't have a problem. AKG's are fairly comfortable, nothing annoying about them, and very light weight.

 

The cables are fine on both. You get two cable options either way. Both are detachable and replaceable.

 

The SRH940 tech specs are very efficient, they get loud without an amplifier. They're on the Shure website under "Specifications".

 

I take it you're after a closed headphone only?

 

Very best,

post #3 of 6

The Shures are very offensive without a good source. To my ears the K271 sounds alot less offensive especially with regard to the treble. However, the 940s definitely take the comparison when it comes to sheer detail.

post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MalVeauX View Post

 

Heya,

 

The K271MKII is neutral, small mid-bass hump, not overly bright, but not dull, otherwise, quite flat and dry sounding. The SRH940 is very bright, lots of treble, great mids, a better sound stage, mid-bass is very anemic and shy, though sub-bass is similar at least, but overall it sounds like a very anemic/thin headphone, even compared to the K271MKII.

 

Build quality wise, the AKG is going to hold up longer. The SRH940 has this annoying spring system in the cups for turning that will wear out over time and the plastic is just not that durable, it scratches easy too.

 

Both are comfortable. Both have access to velour pads (the K271 comes with both pleather & velour). Some people find the SRH940 headband to be a little uncomfortable. I didn't have a problem. AKG's are fairly comfortable, nothing annoying about them, and very light weight.

 

The cables are fine on both. You get two cable options either way. Both are detachable and replaceable.

 

The SRH940 tech specs are very efficient, they get loud without an amplifier. They're on the Shure website under "Specifications".

 

I take it you're after a closed headphone only?

 

Very best,

 

 

Thanks man. Yeah I preffer a closed-back headphone so I can use it outside as well as inside my house (I live next to a very noisy avenue). I think I am going to go for the AKG, so far I've seen nothing but excelent reviews an opinions. Besides there aren't many good sounding closed-back headphones in this price range IMO (maybe the AKG K550 is a bit better but I still like the K 271).

 

Thank you for everything!!!


Edited by kingcrimson69 - 11/18/12 at 6:14am
post #5 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by kingcrimson69 View Post

 

Thanks man. Yeah I preffer a closed-back headphone so I can use it outside as well as inside my house (I live next to a very noisy avenue). I think I am going to go for the AKG, so far I've seen nothing but excelent reviews an opinions. Besides there aren't many good sounding closed-back headphones in this price range IMO (maybe the AKG K550 is a bit better but I still like the K 271).

 

Thank you for everything!!!

 

There are plenty of good sounding closed back headphones in the $150~300 range (the K271 is usually around $150, the SRH940 is $250~300, street price). It just depends on what kind of sound you're after. Here's some other excellent headphones in that range that are closed:

 

AudioTechnica A700X

AudioTechnica A900X

Beyer DT770 PRO

Brainwavz HM5

AKG K167

AKG K550

Ultrasone HFI 780

Ultrasone PRO 750

Sony MDR1R

Sony MDRZX700

Sennheiser HD380 PRO

KRK KNS 8400

Shure SRH840

Mr Speakers Mad Dogs (modded T50RPs)

 

Very best,

post #6 of 6

Hi,

 

I have owned the AKG K271 MkII's for just over 3 years now. They have been my primary on-the-go semi-portable headphones for 2 of those years, accompanying me on the bus several times a week for class at University. As the posters above described them, I would say they have an excellent midrange and treble. 

 

Fit/Comfort/Durability

These headphones have a more limited adjustment for the headband than most, and if you have a really big head they may not fit. I've had a few friends who could not fit these headphones on their head. The headphones come with 2 sets of earpads, velour and pleather. I use the velour for increased comfort and can comfortably wear these headphones for 2 hours without an issue. I wear glasses, as well.

 

The AKG K271 Pads are about 110mm in diameter, and have an inner opening diameter of about 50mm.  

 

Another pro for the AKG's is their light weight. Weight without the cable is only 240g. Despite this, being a studio can, they are durable. As I mentioned, they were my on the go phones, and lived in my backpack for a few months. I made sure they were on top of my books, but that was it. Very durable. With a bit of care durability should not be an issue. 

 

The only thing I don’t know is what type of music you listen to. 

 

Sound:

I find the K271's to be acceptable for all genres, but there are some genres where it does not shine as much. In hard rock, metal, electronica or any other music where there is a hard driving bass line I find the low end to be lacking a little. It just doesn't sound meaty enough. It doesn't get the head bobbing and the toes tapping as much as other phones that dig into the bass more. The bass is there, but it is a very tight, clean bass. It doesn't slam hard, doesn't rattle your head. Some have said it is overdamped, others have said it is just very very clean.

 

It’s hard to describe, but most phones you see these days, from $10 generics and up will probably seem to have more prominent bass than these headphones. Running a bass test through these headphones, it's as though the bass needs to be turned up a bit to match the volume level of the rest of the sound spectrum. May be a pro or a con, depending on your tastes. Overall, I would say the bass runs towards the thin side of neutral.

 

On the other hand, for genres like vocal, some jazz, and other music where the midrange and highs are more important, they shine. I initially bought these cans because the mids/highs reminded me of my open Beyerdynamic DT880's. For a closed can at this price they have very nice midrange and treble. Female vocals sound amazing with these headphones.   

 

Drivability

At 70 ohms, these are a moderately easy headphone to drive. On a bus, directly out of an ipod touch, I found I needed about 65% volume to get adequate volume out of the headphones. In a quiet room, 50% was sufficient. Using a sound meter, that translates to ~70db at 50%, and ~80db at 65%. That’s all I needed. I have heard that the bass response improves with an amp, but I don’t have one and haven’t really been able to test that theory.

 

Links

http://www.head-fi.org/t/128983/15-closed-headphones-2-canalphones-and-a-discussion-on-frequency-graphs-reviews

 

This review covers 15 different closed phones, including the AKG K271 (Original Version), but I feel that most of the points brought up in the review still apply to the MKII. I highly recommend at least taking a glance at this if you are still curious about the AKG’s.

 

Hope that helps. If you have any other questions, please feel free to ask, and I’ll try to answer as best I can. I have not heard the Shure 940’s, so I cannot/will not comment on them.

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