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AKG K240 or Audio Technica AD500x/700x for my first foray into open headphones

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hey Head-Fiers

 

I'm looking to make my first foray into open headphones and I think I have it narrowed down to basically two: the AKG 240 and Audio Technica AD500x (possibly AD700x). First, a little background. I have a pair of Shure SRH440's with the 880 pads, which I enjoy the sound of. The downside to these is I find them very uncomfortable after an hour or two. I also have some Shure SE215's which I enjoy for IEMs, but they're pretty bassy and also not terribly comfortable after an hour or two. I apparently have very oddly shaped ears, since I've yet to find a comfortable IEM.

 

What I'm Looking For: I'm looking for something that is extremely comfortable. I have a large head and I wear glasses, which has made finding comfortable headphones difficult. Since I've already ventured into closed and IEM, I thought I'd give open a shot since these cans would be used primarily at home for music, movies, gaming, and tv.

 

What I Listen To: I listen to a pretty eclectic mix of music: some classical, Trampled By Turtles, Muse, The Black Keys, System of a Down, Franz Ferdinand, Caravan Palace, Movits, Atmosphere, Skylar Grey, etc. Point being, I need some versatile cans. I'm not a basshead, but I do appreciate some low end (which I understand I'm giving up a little in open ear designs). I don't have an amp, but these would probably be run out of a soundcard (HTO Striker) or receiver (10ish year old Pioneer A/V/ receiver), although having the ability to run them off my laptop of galaxy nexus would be a plus.

 

Price Range: I'd like to keep it around $100 if possible, but if something is just amazingly better for marginally more I'd like to at least hear about it.

 

What I Think I Know: I've been lurking these forums as well as just doing some research on the K240 and AD500x/AD700x and this is what I've found. Feel free to correct any misconceptions.

 

K240 Pros: Comfortable, detailed, detachable cable

K240 Cons: Needs an amp to sounds its best, a bit light on bass, smaller soundstage than the AD500x/700x.

 

AD500x/700x Pros: Extremely comfortable for some, great soundstage, pretty balanced

AD500x/700x Cons: Wing system doesn't work for some, a bit light on bass, I've heard bad things about the cable

 

What I Don't Know: Which one should I go for? Are there any alternatives around this price range I should look into (I've read a bit on the TAD400's but details are a bit sparse)? Which one do you think is more comfortable? Do the K240's really need an amp? My ears just brush the inside of my 440's. Are the cups on these cans deep enough? How do they compare in sound to the 440's?

 

Thanks in advance for any advice you toss my way!

post #2 of 4

Sennheiser HD558, Amazon sells used for around $110.

Best to spend $20 for a replacement cable for the HD558s, that comes with a 3.5mm plug.

post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the recommendation. How does the comfort and soundstage compare to the K240 and AD500x? Also, I've heard allusions to the "Sennheiser Veil". Do you know how the sound quality would differ between the senn and the other two?

post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 

Here's the pricing on Amazon info for the phones I'm looking into.

 

AKG K240: $80

AKG K240 mkII: $115

Audio Technica AD500x: $90

Audio Technica AD700x: $160

Sennheiser 558: $128

 

Is the AKG K240 mkII really $35 dollars better than the standard K240? Is the AD700x really almost twice as good as the AD500x? Is the 558 worth the extra $30-40 over the K240 and AD500x? Obviously I want cans that sound good, but I'm all about marginal returns.

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