The Q sounds like a poor man's HD800.
- 4,720 Posts. Joined 8/2011
- Location: Home of the Olympic Gold Medal Hockey Teams......both of them!
- Select All Posts By This User
The Q sounds like a poor man's HD800.
Neither one is better than the other, it comes down to preference.
-I found comfort for DT880 and Q701 are about the same.
-Bass of both extends well, but DT880 has more impact.
-I liked the Q701's midrange a lot more than the DT880. The DT880 has very thin mids which I don't like.
-Treble on both extends very well. DT880 sounded a bit more brighter than the Q701, but sounds more sibilant. I think the Q701 has better detail in the treble though.
-Q701 has superior soundstage.
-DT880 has superior build quality, although both are built very well. Q701 has removable cables though.
I just couldn't stand the DT880's thin and bland mids. I prefer the Q701 as a result.
Throwing the HD580/600 into the mix certainly does make things interesting, especially because I love its midrange and overall warm and laid back sound signature.
Check my profile - I owned both, and compared the two many times - side by side. I know they sound different.
IMO the DT880 is definitely the brighter (and more detailed) of the two. It's the way I heard them - and the graphs tend to agree.
This is honestly one of the tougher audio buying decisions I've made...kinda funny given some of the speaker/amp/preamp decisions over the years!
I have the 558 and the DT990 & 770. The 558 got the most time when the music's on 'Shuffle' because I like it better (more natural sounding) across the genres. I love the Beyers but almost had to be in a certain mood to throw them on over the 558 (probably their treble)...bought a Bravo Ocean to see if I like tubes with Beyers (definite yes).
So...my questions are:
- if I buy the 600, will I put them on an think, "Hmmm, my 558s sound a little better today"?
- is there enough bass in the Q701 to make it my go-to set until I move to the next tier?
- Should I just admit to myself I really like the Beyer / Tube sound better and walk down that path (first ever tube amp in 30+ yrs)?
Thanks...you're right, I need to find a store that has the AKG's and give them a listen.
It's funny, I've been reading the 990 v2005 (premium) appreciation thread (http://www.head-fi.org/t/199052/beyerdynamic-dt990-ver-2005-appreciation-thread) to try to make me appreciate mine more, and I'd say that the majority of people who got them absolutely loved them and considered them a clear and definite upgrade to the/their 880s, more enjoyable, better refined, soundstage, etc.
I, unfortunately I think, bought the 990s over the 880s when I saw a deal and remembered the 990 was the Beyer flagship, and I am sometimes bothered by their coloration. I've been trying to EQ them flat, and have had fairly good success, but have yet to A/B the EQ'd 990 to the Q701s. That said, the Q701 are fantastic out of the box. Neutral, highly detailed presentation, imho, easily the better headphone vs the 990s. Now I've been lately contemplating getting some 880s as it's supposed to be more neutral, but reading the 990 appreciation thread, and given that many say the 990 have an edge on them in many respects, and the cost obviously, the 880 I think is on hold indefinitely.
990 EQ'd, to reduce their coloration to maybe a closer 880 level, or maybe midway between the Q701 and 990, I'd say they're definitely quite good, it's definitely possible to make them seem 'normal' by using an EQ. But overall, while the 990s can make some records/songs sound fantastic, I'd say the Q701s do a much better job in general. The 990's emphasized bass & treble IMHO plays against itself most of the time.
Now the 990s aren't the 880s, if it was 990 vs Q701, choice would be easy, if you want a neutral phone, Q701 all the way, if you want a high bass/treble energy 'fun' phone, 990 is the obvious choice. I guess 880 vs Q701 is a harder choice, but I can definitely recommend the Q701, fantastic performance, great phone! But yeah, the ridges tend to get painful after a while, but many have fixed them via mods, to me, for the first 30-60 minutes, they feel great, but once the ridges start to hurt the top of your head, they get downright painful. :\ The 990/880s have no such problem!
[edit: actually the above mentioned thread gets more negative around the end, especially around page 30/2011, a lot more people are expressing criticism]
[edit2: The 990s seem most often worse after comparison, by themselves they can seem rather flawless, especially if you're not aware of how the music would sound on a more neutral phone, also whatever gear you listen to your ears/brain usually adjust and just make them sound 'right' after a while.
I think both the 880/Q701 are a safe bet, 880s being safer bet than 990]
You know, I have a gut feeling that the DT880 is somewhat like the HD650 in needing better equipment than it's usually paired with. The $250 price (for the pro) can easily lead you to think that any old amp will do fine when the phone will only begin to shine with better. I wonder what the best system anyone's used an 880 with is.