First off, thanks to Dan for allowing the AD's to go on tour. Overall, I think these are a home run. Bear in mind, these are initial impressions, not a full blown review! I look forward to reading those in the coming days/weeks.
+ Overall, great SQ. Balanced, "reference" type sound.
+ Fantastic treble. Really extended, without a trace of harshness.
+ Scales well with better amplification. Iphones need not apply.
+ Fit and finish on cups is beautiful.
+ Great method to plug the cables in. I found myself switching between the XLR/SE cables with ease.
+ Tunable bass port. I briefly tried this doing (2) 1/2 twists clockwise, and then reversing before packing the headphone back up. Made a subtle, but noticeable difference.
- Just a touch bass light out of the box. I don't think I had a fit issue as I had a great seal.
- Earpads are soft and comfortable but not 100% circumaural for me which prevent ultimate comfort. YMMV, I have slightly but not excessively large ears.
- Included stand is too short, not sure I would have any use for it.
- Tunable bass port is a great feature, but it would be even better if there was a way to register what position the headphone is in, in order to accurately adjust it.
Compared to HD800:
- The AD held its own very well against the HD800. Not as big a sound stage nor the same ultimate level of resolution, but the fact that I could even compare the 2 is pretty impressive. In fact, it would not surprise me if the AD becomes characterized as a closed HD800. From memory, I think the AD sound stage is similar to HE500 and larger than HD650. Well done!
Compared to 7520:
- Much larger sound stage, more out of head than in head.
- Large "reference" type of sound vs a smaller, punchier sound.
- Much larger and heavier, not suitable (for me) as a portable.....which is what I use the 7520 for.