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Best headphones for classical and opera $200

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Looking for new pair of cans for $200. Must be open, have superb soundstage and imaging,comfort, Looking for a big powerful sound,smooth sounding,highly detailed and deep bass. Love everything about the Sennheiser HD598 but im afraid these dont have the bass I am after. I have the ATH-M50 but i've hated them since day one. Source is iPod touch 5g and am looking for amp suggestions. The amp must be portable because I will be taking these outside to enjoy nature,I live in the country so im not worried about outside noise. Amp must be cheap but efficient. Must also have strong vocals. Again these are strictly for classical and opera
post #2 of 21
Well at first I would say k701/702 or Q701s but then you say the 598s didn't have enough bass for you. The 701s have what you called "deep bass" the extension is there with the 701s but they have much less bass presence than the 598s. As you learn more about the hobby you'll find that bass and high detail don't usually go together in the sound signature of a single headphone. Hd600s are a good option they are a little bit warm but not as detailed as the 701s, they make a ton of genres sound great but are a little out of your price range. Both of the cans I mentioned need a nice high quality amp to really shine. If you could prioritize your needs in your wanted sound signature that would be very helpful. Fiio e11 our e12 is the cheapest I'd go on an amp and even then they won't get the cans anywhere near their potential.
post #3 of 21
Thread Starter 
I have no problem with paying more for an amp. By bass I Mean things like an organ must sound full and rich. The 598 seem to be my best bet. Im aware of the excellent soundstage and imaging but how do they sound? I like strings,piano and female vocals. As for signature I like it something smooth and bright. Must sound good at high volumes. Also suggest an amp aswell,I will pay around $150-$200 for it
post #4 of 21
Thread Starter 
I said I imagine they are bass lite,I have not tried them. Like I said,bass is not important if it means sacrificing detail
post #5 of 21

well the K701s are no doubt more detailed than the 598s and both have good bass extension.   The K701s are miles ahead of the 598s in detail and the soundstage on both are good but the 701s soundstage is absolutely massive.  Since you're listening to classical and opera exclusively I would say go for the 701s.  I really enjoyed them with my acoustic genres when I had them they made vocals sound great too but when I tried hip hop/ electronic and pop with them they were not very enjoyable.  


The 701s and an 02 amp should serve you very  well.

post #6 of 21

I'll second the K701/702 suggestion, even better if you can find the K601, these supposed to have a tad better body and warmth (will benefit opera and small ensemble music) compared to K701 and should be a bit easier to drive. Best portable amp I've used with K701 is the Neco soundlab (plenty powerful and excellent details). If you want a cheaper option I find the Electric Avenues PA2V2 to be pretty close in sound quality (but not as close in power and build quality) to the Neco and readily available in the US. Fiio E11 on high power and high gain can drive the AKG but nowhere near as well as the two I mentioned.

post #7 of 21

K702/Q701 get my vote. 

post #8 of 21
Q701 would be my choice as well. Another choice is the Sony MA900.
post #9 of 21

I enjoy my K702 + O2 for orchestral, but I can't on listen them outside. For an outdoor classical headphone, consider Shure SRH840 and Beyerdynamic DT660. The O2 might not portable enough for you. Fortunately, neither of those headphones needs an amp (though both sound better with one).

post #10 of 21
I really enjoy my HD598s with large scale orchestral stuff. They don't lack bass at all. It's there, it just isn't in your face. The gorgeous mids take centre stage with these things.

They crank up really well and you get more of a picture of the bottom end at higher volumes. They are smooth and liquid sounding, whilst still retaining detail. The only issue I could point out is that they are ever so slightly slow, so are not aggressive, if that's what you need. They have power though and the soundstage and imaging makes lots of recordings sound spectacular.

It took me some time to get into them, but they are my most listened to headphone now and I couldn't live without them!
Edited by amigomatt - 11/27/13 at 4:52pm
post #11 of 21
Thread Starter 
The K701 is $300,out of my price range. However the K702 and Quincy Jones Q702 are both around $200. The Q702 come in lime green which I dig. Whats the difference between the two? One is slightly more so comparison is nice,along with specs.
post #12 of 21

The Q701 is supposed to have a bit more bass and if you do the port mod discussed in the Q701 thread becomes much fuller sounding. I like the Q701 a lot myself.

post #13 of 21

Unless you spend several hours with both the k701s and the q701s, you won't be able to tell the difference.  They have pretty much the same sound when compared to other headphones.  

post #14 of 21
Thread Starter 
Please explain the ins and outs of a desktop amp. Is there one thats usb powered and doesn't require you to use software on a pc?
post #15 of 21
Originally Posted by willitblend View Post

Please explain the ins and outs of a desktop amp. Is there one thats usb powered and doesn't require you to use software on a pc?


Oh, there are several - assuming I understand you correctly.


Something like this, for instance: http://www.jdslabs.com/products/35/objective2-headphone-amplifier/

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