AKG K-401 or Senn HD580?
Apr 6, 2002 at 7:39 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 57

violeta88

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I've been doing some thinking and I am having second thoughts about the HD580's. I'm thinking they might be a little too laid back for me. The AKG K-401's are supposed to have better bass than the 501's and are supposed to be in between laid back and forward. I loved the Sennheiser HD280's which were also in-between and I was wondering if the AKG's would be a good alternative to the HD580's for me. I have no way to listen to them, the only AKG's I've heard were the K-301's and they were not that good, but then again they aren't supposed to be near as good as the 401/501's. Todd at Headroom was recommending them to me because I listen to rock and pop and I just was wondering if anyone has heard them and used them for those kinds of music. I'm looking for tight, moderately punchy bass, deep bass extension, a smooth, articulate midrange, and a non-bright, non-rolled off treble. I'm just wondering if the 401's have these qualities. And most of all, I want to be put in the music, not be a casual observer. That was the deal killer with the 580's. So, if anyone has heard them, please fill me in. Thanks.
 
Apr 6, 2002 at 7:41 AM Post #2 of 57

Joe Bloggs

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How about the Beyer DT931? That is supposed to be HD580's brother, just as smooth, only more forward. (no mention of whether it should be big brother or little brother
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Apr 6, 2002 at 7:46 AM Post #3 of 57

violeta88

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I was thinking about that, but I want to get a pair of headphones through Headroom and their price on the DT931 is too high for me. Plus, I have a feeling that they might be too bright. And I don't want to fiddle around with impedance adaptors.
 
Apr 6, 2002 at 8:37 AM Post #5 of 57

Joe Bloggs

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Really, violeta, I think you should have kept your HD497
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Your next upgrade should have been an amp, not new phones
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Apr 6, 2002 at 8:44 AM Post #6 of 57

PC Corp

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How about to sell/trade the HD497's to get a CMoy type amp, then buy a used HD580.

You don't have to spend a fortune to get a much better sound by this way.
 
Apr 6, 2002 at 9:23 AM Post #8 of 57

PC Corp

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hm, DIYing a CMoy amp would be a quite good idea. Seriously, it's dirt cheap. I'm very interesting in diying one this summer.
 
Apr 6, 2002 at 9:38 AM Post #9 of 57

violeta88

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I am getting a JMT amp along w/the headphones. I just want an all out headphone upgrade. I want the GOOD stuff. Not the cheap crap. But, I don't want to pay a lot for it either. And at $120 the K401 seems like a bargain.
 
Apr 6, 2002 at 10:18 AM Post #11 of 57

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My feeling about the Sennheisers is the same... way too laid back for me. I've tried out a friend of mine's HD600s on a few different headphone amps, and it just does nothing for me, but then I'm so used to the in-you-face Grado sound that the Sennheisers just sound sedated. That being said, it's some people's favorite headphone.

The K401 and K501 are also excellent, and based on some comments I've read around here, the K501 is audio nirvana when paired with the right kind of amp. However, the K401 another friend of mine has is quite unimpressive to him when used right out of his 4 track.

Since both of these are very high-impedence, the choice of amp becomes a major issue, and in my oppinion the choice of amp in this situation is at least as important as is which of the two headphones is chosen.
 
Apr 6, 2002 at 2:55 PM Post #13 of 57

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Quote:

Originally posted by BDA_ABAT
Why not splurge? Go for the AKG 1000. HeadRoom has them on sale now for $399.


That's a good idea, but if you read about what headroom says they require for an amp, a very powerful one at that, they are simply not practical (unless you want to pay that sale price of the K1000's plus an amp- JMT's probably will not be powerful enough). But maybe if you have a recevier or preamp with a quality headphone out, then you should have enough power. But it's pretty hard to find preamps and receivers with quality headphone outs, although some of NAD's equipment is said to be decent.

I would recommend semi-splurging and getting the ATH-W100's.
I'll be getting mine very soon, and I can't wait to hear how they sound!
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Apr 6, 2002 at 3:10 PM Post #14 of 57

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Quote:

I've been doing some thinking and I am having second thoughts about the HD580's. I'm thinking they might be a little too laid back for me.


Wait a minute, violeta... have you heard them?
 
Apr 6, 2002 at 3:25 PM Post #15 of 57

pigmode

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Quote:

I'm looking for tight, moderately punchy bass, deep bass extension, a smooth, articulate midrange, and a non-bright, non-rolled off treble. I'm just wondering if the 401's have these qualities. And most of all, I want to be put in the music, not be a casual observer. That was the deal killer with the 580's. So, if anyone has heard them, please fill me in. Thanks.


These comments are based on the 501/580 coupled with the JMT. Some will say the JMT cannot power the 580/501 to their full potential, but considering your past and present equipment, I wouldn't worry about it. Either headphone along with the JMT will put you into a performance category that can keep you happy for a long, long time.

If you're looking for deep bass then the AKG won't fit the bill. The 580 has a lot more impact, although the AKGs bass is tighter. The Senn bass can sound a little boomy to some ears, whlie the AKG is rolled off at the bottom.

I wouldn't describe the AKG as bright, but its treble is more forward in comparison to the 580. This characteristic of the AKG makes it much less forgiving of badly produced CDs. That is one of the strong points of the 580---its laid back sound is more forgiving.

Both have a nice midrange, but the AKG supasses the senn in this area. The AKG mid really shines with classical music, acoustic instrumentals, and vocals. In short, both are great phones with differing sound characteristics, strengths and weaknesses.

My guess is the 580 is what you are looking for.
 

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