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AKG Q701 vs Beyerdynamic DT880

post #1 of 49
Thread Starter 
I read tons of reviews of both,but can't decide what are the similarities and which is better...
Can anyone help?
post #2 of 49
Have had both.
Beyerdynamic:
Alot more comfortable
Does everything well, but not perfectly
Good soundstage
Good bite on lead guitar for rock

Q701
Horribly uncomfortable. The earpads are hard, and don't conform to your head. If your head is too big the headphone won't sit squarely on your head

Very good soundstage
Excellent for classical/jazz music
Decent for everything else


Imo the dt880 is a way better headphone.
post #3 of 49

Agree the 880 is the better phone. But I also think it's excellent for classical/jazz.

post #4 of 49
Thread Starter 
thanks.
any more opinions?
post #5 of 49

I'm a bigger fan of the Q701's.

 

Comfort is subjective; and to me, the DT 880's were very uncomfortable. They have very shallow earcups (much more shallow than the DT 770's or 990's), and my ear touched the inside of the cup which irritated it. The Q701's were more comfortable to me, but the headband is not for everyone, though. Owning several different cans, I can tell you that I gravitate toward the ones in my collection that are most comfortable.  So test them out and don't buy a phone you can't wear comfortably for more than 2 hours or so.

 

The 880's are fine headphones, but they don't do anything exceptionally well. I suppose if I could only have 1 headphone, the 880 would be a better all rounder. But since I have a bunch of cans, I choose complementary ones that do certain things very well, and I found myself enjoying the Q701's excellent soundstage and clarity.

post #6 of 49
The DT880 are ultra comfortable.
Like wearing a couple of pillows on your head.
post #7 of 49
Thread Starter 

Thanks,but i really care more about the SQ than the comfort,i don't mind suffering for my music:)

post #8 of 49

Owned both - this is from my notes .....

 

Soundstage/Imaging - Q701 definitely larger, but DT880 more coherent IMO.  DT880 more circular - whereas Q701 tends to be eliptical (more towards the ears, and less in the center).  I personally found that the DT880 imaged better despite the smaller stage.

 

Frequency Response - Q701 and DT880 actually aren't that far away from each other.  DT880 has better sub-bass, and IMO better bass definition.  Q701 has slightly more mid-bass.  DT880 is flatter (more neutral) over all, whereas Q701 had slightly more forward upper mids (especially noticed with vocals).  DT880 is more detailed IMO - with a definite peak around 7-9kHz.  Sometimes felt like a spotlight is being shone on the music.

 

Comfort - easy - DT880 very comfortable, although I had no issues with the Q701 either.  The bumps on the headband are either something you get used to or you modify.

 

OP - you'll get differing opinions on this headphone - depending on upstream gear, and individual preferences.  Both are pretty good.  Throw the HD600 into the mix, and you've effectively got the mid-fi trifecta ;)

post #9 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bee inthe Attic View Post
 

The 880's are fine headphones, but they don't do anything exceptionally well.

 

I had both too and I totally agree.

The DT880 (I had the 600 ohm version) is an excellent HP and is comfortable but it never "wowed" me. I found it boring. IMO it is a good all-rounder but overrated though. I sold it after a very short period (break-in did not affect the SQ).

 

Confort: DT880>Q701

Bass: Q701=DT880 (DT digs deep and has more impact, Q701 has better texture, timbre and separation)

Mids: Q701>DT800 (no contest here, mids are fantastic on the Q701, average and slightly recessed on the Beyer)

Highs: Q701>DT880 (clear, detailed and non-fatiguing on the Q701, detailed but horribly piercing and uber-fatiguing on the DT880)

Soundstage: Q701>DT880 (no contest here, Q701's 3D soundstage is "magic", DT880's soundstage gave me claustrophobia)

Clarity, separation, air: Q701>DT880 (by a huge margin)

Details: DT880>Q701 (but kinda artificially pushed up by DT880's treble)

Timbre, Realism: Q701>DT880 (for example, strings and vocals sound way more natural on the AKG)

Organicity: Q701>DT880 (DT880 has good bass, mids and treble but they are not well integrated, they don't seem to be related to each other, Q701 has a delicious cohesion, great separation but the sound reproduction as a whole is very organic and coherent)

 

I know that DT880's fans are going to give me hell for that comparison... :tongue: :D

ps: sorry for my bad english


Edited by Hairspray - 9/27/13 at 4:34am
post #10 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooko View Post
 

Owned both - this is from my notes .....

 

Soundstage/Imaging - Q701 definitely larger, but DT880 more coherent IMO.  DT880 more circular - whereas Q701 tends to be eliptical (more towards the ears, and less in the center).  I personally found that the DT880 imaged better despite the smaller stage.

 

Frequency Response - Q701 and DT880 actually aren't that far away from each other.  DT880 has better sub-bass, and IMO better bass definition.  Q701 has slightly more mid-bass.  DT880 is flatter (more neutral) over all, whereas Q701 had slightly more forward upper mids (especially noticed with vocals).  DT880 is more detailed IMO - with a definite peak around 7-9kHz.  Sometimes felt like a spotlight is being shone on the music.

 

Comfort - easy - DT880 very comfortable, although I had no issues with the Q701 either.  The bumps on the headband are either something you get used to or you modify.

 

OP - you'll get differing opinions on this headphone - depending on upstream gear, and individual preferences.  Both are pretty good.  Throw the HD600 into the mix, and you've effectively got the mid-fi trifecta ;)

 

Throw the HD600 into the mix, and you have a winner. This is my favourite price/performance headphone.

post #11 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hairspray View Post
 

 

I had both too and I totally agree.

The DT880 (I had the 600 ohm version) is an excellent HP and is comfortable but it never "wowed" me. I found it boring. IMO it is a good all-rounder but overrated though. I sold it after a very short period (break-in did not affect the SQ).

 

Confort: DT880>Q701

Bass: Q701=DT880 (DT digs deep and has more impact, Q701 has better texture, timbre and separation)

Mids: Q701>DT800 (no contest here, mids are fantastic on the Q701, average and slightly recessed on the Beyer)

Highs: Q701>DT880 (clear, detailed and non-fatiguing on the Q701, detailed but horribly piercing and uber-fatiguing on the DT880)

Soundstage: Q701>DT880 (no contest here, Q701's 3D soundstage is "magic", DT880's soundstage gave me claustrophobia)

Clarity, separation, air: Q701>DT880 (with a huge margin)

Details: DT880>Q701 (but kinda artificially pushed up by DT880's treble)

Timbre, Realism: Q701>DT880 (for example, strings and vocals sound way more natural on the AKG)

Organicity: Q701>DT880 (DT880 has good bass, mids and treble but they are not well integrated, they don't seem to be related to each other, Q701 has a delicious cohesion, great separation but the sound reproduction as a whole is very organic and coherent)

 

I know that DT880's fans are going to give me hell for that comparison... :tongue: :D

ps: sorry for my bad english

 

Wow - proves my point above.  What were you amping the DT880 with ? ;) 

 

I'd totally disagree on the imaging and clarity.  Q701 is large (stage) - but hardly what I'd call natural.  And the DT880 images a lot better (circular rather than oval).

 

Each to their own though.

 

The 600 ohm DT880 definitely needs higher voltage rather than current - maybe that's where the difference is.  The Q701 needs current rather than voltage  Throw an OTL tube set-up behind the Beyer, and I think you just might change your mind on some of those categories above.

post #12 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooko View Post
 

 

Wow - proves my point above.  What were you amping the DT880 with ? ;) 

 

I'd totally disagree on the imaging and clarity.  Q701 is large (stage) - but hardly what I'd call natural.  And the DT880 images a lot better (circular rather than oval).

 

Each to their own though.

 

The 600 ohm DT880 definitely needs higher voltage rather than current - maybe that's where the difference is.  The Q701 needs current rather than voltage  Throw an OTL tube set-up behind the Beyer, and I think you just might change your mind on some of those categories above.

 

hahaha..., there's no accounting for preferences and tastes... fortunately.

 

I drive my HPs with NwAvGuy's "creatures". Needless to say that the ODAC+O2 combo has more than enough juice to feed the 600 ohms of the DT880 (even at low gain).

The ODAC alone has a high voltage output. It requires a very low volume setting from the amp (in fact, one of the lowest of any DAC). That's why the "gain swith" mod is a no-brainer.

And regarding the tube-amp taming the piercing highs, I don't want to use my amp as an EQ (tubes). O2 is neutral, that's the only thing I'm asking from an amp.

 

Anyway... x701 haters claim its soundstage is too wide and thus the imaging gets messed up or becomes artificial, but imo it is just like you are standing in the middle of the orchestra/band, spinning around yourself, surrounded by the sound, kinda unique presentation, kinda unsteady or at least unconventional but not unrealistic.

A realistic presentation doesn't necessarily mean "in hall feel" or "front row feel", sitting still in a chair in front of the band/orchestra isn't the only way to listen to music, is it?

I remember, a few years ago, during the rehearsals of a friend's rock band, i used to take a stool and sat down in the middle of the band, between the drummer and the singer. And it was a lot of fun...

 

ps: what do you mean by "wow - proves my point above"? that you agree mostly agree except for the imaging.


Edited by Hairspray - 9/27/13 at 5:31am
post #13 of 49
Nope. I meant this .........
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooko View Post

OP - you'll get differing opinions on this headphone - depending on upstream gear, and individual preferences.  Both are pretty good.

Actually I would disagree with a lot of what you wrote. Mind you, I genuinely liked both cans.

And the OTL I own (LD MKIV) is not what I'd call overly coloured either. I guess we just have different preferences. Personally I'd take the HD600 over both cans though.
post #14 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brooko View Post

Nope. I meant this .........
Actually I would disagree with a lot of what you wrote. Mind you, I genuinely liked both cans.

And the OTL I own (LD MKIV) is not what I'd call overly coloured either. I guess we just have different preferences. Personally I'd take the HD600 over both cans though.

 

i'm still hesitating between the hd600 and the pro 2900.

i cannot afford both... :veryevil:

post #15 of 49
Thread Starter 

Which one of them sounds the closest to HD800?

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