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AKG's new K872?

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by nzvlam, Mar 29, 2016.
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  1. inthere

    This is a pic of how I did my sorbothane mod-this is shown with Dynamat Extreme which sounded horrible, using sorbothane in the same spots sounds much better. 
    Didn't want to take my pads off to show the actual sorbothane pieces because I have so much trouble getting the pads back on.
  2. Traveller
    And you placed the foam ring back over all of that? How thick are the sorbothane pieces?
  3. Beagle
    They can be a bit dark sounding if you don't position them correctly, which I have just found out, after seven months of use.
    Up to today I had been wearing them so my ears were about in the center of the pad openings, which is usually the ideal spot on circumaural headphones. I liked the sound but was always a bit bothered by the less than ideal fit and seal, as well as a bit of coarseness or unevenness (coolness) in the treble. I decided to reposition the inner headband height setting so the K872 sat higher up on my head and so that my ear lobes were sitting just inside the edge of the bottom of the pads. I can actually shake my head a bit and the headphones stay put. Previously the slightest movement would shift the phones and the sound.
    Suddenly I had the right seal and fit, and suddenly the treble sounded like nice airy, open treble, maybe a bit too present. I put the foam rings back in and BINGO.....balance, imaging, focus all sounded better. The top end still is AKG flavor but is more airy with a wee touch of sparkle.
    itchyears, Quinto and knaai like this.
  4. inthere
    No, I left the foam ring off. the sorbothane pieces are pretty thick-they get up to 8mm in the middle:
  5. xxx1313
    ​Thanks for you tips regarding positioning, but I think that this is not the reason for my impressions, because I tried different positions on my head. I agree that a good seal is very important with the K872. It seems that we simply have a different taste. Even without the foam rings, the K872 has a rather prominent bass, IMHO. I like that, but with some tracks it is still a tad too much. I do not have any problems with sibilance of the defoamed K872, in contrast to the K812 with its infamous treble peak. By the way, both are good headphones in my opinion, considering their prices. This simple mod for the K872 is a boon for its owners, because its sound can be changed quite a bit by removing the foam rings or inserting them again, if one does not like result.
  6. Traveller
    Yes, well, there seems to be conflicting opinions on this "positioning" business.
    I personally have not noticed any variations with "slight" adjustments (I'm not interested in doing yoga with them on [​IMG]) and if we assume they are close in basic characteristics to the 812, @Tyll Hertsens also ran his FR analysis* in five different positions without any real changes.
    On the flip-side, this one reviewer said re-positioning them made a particular issue go away:
    "...When the headphone is fighting you and not positioning itself correctly the sound quality heavily spikes in the mid-range making everything sound incredibly boxy, so if you start noticing a hotter mid-range work on the positioning the headphone..."
    There could of course be a direct correlation with positioning and proper seal. IMHO positioning can easily be checked as the isolation on the 872s is top. Should you at some point notice a decrease in isolation then re-positioning is required.
    *Link to InnerFidelity's 812 measurements:
  7. inthere
    Position, music preference, tuning preference, listening level........all can play a part.
    I know when I first removed the rings it sounded much thinner with less bass and the sibilance was unbearable.
    But I have a pretty high listening level. Someone with a lower listening level won't be bothered by the sibilance. Also bass is not as critical in classical music as others and gets in the way of the treble and mid clarity.
    So, if you have a low listening level and enjoy classical music, take out the rings.
    but if you have a high listening level and like somewhat bassy music, leave them in. Or do my sorb mod.
    bidn likes this.
  8. xxx1313
    This seems to be good advice!
    Back one last time to the "positioning" thing. I experienced that the bass disappears significantly with too low pressure of the K872 on your head. With the tightest step of the headband, the space between the earcups should not be much more than 3 cm. FritzS postet this (in German) at open-end-music forum:
  9. juanluxo
    Hello, I am curious, early on in this thread I believe you mentioned owning the Audeze Lcd-xc yes? How would you say the stock version of these Akg k872 compare? Thank you.
  10. inthere
    I have the LCD-4, not the XC, also the EL-8 and the Sine if you're comparing closed headphones. Comparing to the EL-8, which is slightly better than the SIne, the K872 is better in every way: better soundstage, more treble clarity, better imaging, more musical, easier to drive, more comfortable, better, cleaner bass.
  11. juanluxo

    I see, all sounds great.

    I produce/mix for a living and use and love my hd800, I've read through most of this thread but am curious to ask you (as I see you too are an audio professional), would you say that if I am looking for the closed version of an hd800, the aka k872 is a great choice?
  12. inthere
    If you're looking for a closed version of the HD800 *maybe*

    For mixing man, I can't mix with the HD800, boosted treble, rolled off bass.

    I'd personally recommend an Oppo PM-1 which is almost completely flat for pro mixing. PM-1 is a bit boring but a great mixing tool if you're forced to use headphones. The K872 has slightly boosted treble, bass a bit rolled off like the HD800, just not as much.
  13. juanluxo
    Interesting, I will definitely check out the Oppo. Yes I love the Hd800 for mixing but maybe I'm just used to them, I go back and forth between my Hd800 and my Amphions when mixing but have been feeling I should add a closed back reference headphone. I'll still look into the akg k872 but the oppo seems quite interesting
  14. knaai
    Thanks a lot for this advice Beagle; the harshness of the treble disappeared and the sound was much better then before!
  15. jagwap
    Just bought a pair. They did turn up in Hong Kong, and a demo pair was available to try. Just the timing ability was enough to convince me: $1111 USD, so a good price.

    Running them in, but first observations:

    They isolate really well.
    They are really comfortable.
    Shame about the boosted from neutral bass. I guess this is Harman policy due to the very good research by Dr. Olive. He has a point but I do not agree completely.
    They don't sound closed, except for the isolation. Nice.

    They are MUCH more sensitive than my Audeze Sines. The spec numbers did not suggest this. As I plan on having these as my work headphone running on portable USB DACs and my LG G6 phone, that is good news.

    They remind me of a AKG K545, the slightly bassier cousin of the K550, but much more refined.

    More observations after they run in, but they are NOT a closed HD800. Shame.
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2017
    itchyears likes this.
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