I know, I'm late to the game, but as I have stated in many of my previous posts, I had left the Headphones world for a good many years and concentrated speakers. However, lately (over the last 2 months), I am coming back into headphones because I have two young children learning violin and piano and having a professional classical pianist wife, up to 6 to 8 hours a day is just a cacophony of sound in my house and just doesn't allow me to listen to my speakers. So, headphones were my only option (and sometimes, only IEMs).
Since the last time I was active in headphones, I had 3 of the top dynamic headphones, the HD650, K701 and DT880. I powered it with a Meier Audio Corda Aria and was contented. However, through the years, I just couldn't get into the AKG K701s as I found it much too warm and veiled through the Corda Aria. Actually, the Aria powered the Beyers wonderfully. Since the Aria were relatively old, I decided to upgrade my amp. I decided on the Burson HA160 (due to a great close-out deal when the local authorised dealer was clearing them out to make space for the latest Soloist). As well, since I got the HA160 which is strictly a headphone amp, I went with the HRT Music Streamer II+ for the DAC.
It is ONLY now that I understood what all the great reviews were about on the AKG K701. Wow, for the first time, I heard details. I heard huge soundstage. I actually heard real bass (and not boomy mid-bass). Feed it good music like the Chesky jazz records, it will reward you with hours of smooth, non-fatiguing, sound-staged music.
Naturally, this amp/dac combo does very well with the HD650 and DT880, but for the first time ever, I am appreciating my AKG K701. Now I know, the AKGs more than anything else, needs to be powered correctly. Underpowered or too warm an amp will just rob it off all its details etc.
Amazing... Just thought I would share this joy, although I know that the Burson HA160 is no longer the flavour of the month.