Amp for AKG K340? Suggestions please.
Nov 1, 2008 at 1:30 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 18

yashicaman

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Recently, I purchased a lovely used pair of unmodified AKG K340's. I've listened to them from the headphone jack in my preamp (Adcom 565), the headphone jack in my McIntosh integrated amp (MA5100), and with my Decware Zen Head ZH1 portable headphone amp. I'm not sure whether I'm reaching my maximum potential with the 340's.

I do have a spare SET amp that I could hook up. It kicks out 2 watts a channel. Would that be enough to drive the 340's? The amp has a volume conrol on it, but is set up for regular stereo use.

Any suggestions? So far I haven't been completely floored by the sound, but on some of my jazz cd's I have been impressed.

In a few months, I may consider mods. Right now I'm just trying to get the best sound out of them that I can.

Thanks.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 8:09 PM Post #3 of 18

philodox

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Give it a try and see. I'd suggest considering the mods though. Also, think about attending [or organizing] a meet in your area so that you can try out some powerful purpose-built headphone amplifiers.
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Nov 1, 2008 at 9:10 PM Post #4 of 18

yashicaman

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Thanks for the replies. I'll try first with my SET. And when I can swing it, I'll try to get to a meet. Mods will happen eventually.
 
Nov 1, 2008 at 9:27 PM Post #5 of 18

krmathis

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Yeah, just give it a try and report back.
Be careful with the volume control and I don't see how you should run into any problems.
 
Nov 2, 2008 at 12:18 AM Post #6 of 18

SonicDawg

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go ahead, and like many said, be careful with the volume pot.
I am playing mine directly off the speaker posts. And they sound great!
 
Nov 2, 2008 at 4:05 PM Post #8 of 18

philodox

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There is definitely something special about the K340's driven by tubes. I was never really happy with the dynahi when I had it either, though it was an excellent amp.
 
Nov 2, 2008 at 4:48 PM Post #9 of 18

musicman59

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I used to have a pair of K340. I strongly recommend you to send the to APS for mods and recable. I would also recommend to replaced the earpads with the ones KT88 (fellow headfier ) sells they are much comfortable and create a better seal.

Amplification is key for these demanding cans. Your 2 watts/ch amp should work great.
 
Nov 2, 2008 at 5:09 PM Post #10 of 18

Skylab

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Quote:

Originally Posted by philodox /img/forum/go_quote.gif
There is definitely something special about the K340's driven by tubes. I was never really happy with the dynahi when I had it either, though it was an excellent amp.


X2 for sure. The K340 *need* tube amps, and a lush tube amp at that. Mine sound their best with my Ming-Da EL84-based amp.
 
Nov 3, 2008 at 2:59 AM Post #11 of 18

yashicaman

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Thanks for the advice. I'll let you know the results once I get it all working (unfortunately, it'll be a while as I'm buried at work/dog training/cubs/film editing).

Cheers!
 
Nov 3, 2008 at 3:05 PM Post #12 of 18

swt61

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Quote:

Originally Posted by JadeEast /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I had good results driving them from a low powered set of monoblock tubes but it entailed a recable.


Not necessarily. If I were interested in trying this without going crazy, I'd have someone build me a female TRS to speaker spades adapter cable.
 
Nov 3, 2008 at 3:13 PM Post #13 of 18

swt61

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Quote:

Originally Posted by philodox /img/forum/go_quote.gif
There is definitely something special about the K340's driven by tubes. I was never really happy with the dynahi when I had it either, though it was an excellent amp.


Quote:

Originally Posted by Skylab /img/forum/go_quote.gif
X2 for sure. The K340 *need* tube amps, and a lush tube amp at that. Mine sound their best with my Ming-Da EL84-based amp.


In theory I agree here, however there are a few notable exceptions. My Solid State β22 actually sounds more tube like than the Darkvoice/Darkvoices I used to drive them with, and is the best match I've ever encountered for the K340 in over 23 years of ownership. Sadly I have yet to hear philodox's "Massive Attack" uber tube amp as of yet, so no comparison there.

I also feel that the K340 is not an all around headphone. For some genres it is unsurpassed IMHO, but Classic Rock, Blues etc... are better off with another headphone.
 
Nov 3, 2008 at 3:51 PM Post #14 of 18

philodox

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Quote:

Originally Posted by swt61 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
In theory I agree here, however there are a few notable exceptions. My Solid State β22 actually sounds more tube like than the Darkvoice/Darkvoices I used to drive them with, and is the best match I've ever encountered for the K340 in over 23 years of ownership. Sadly I have yet to hear philodox's "Massive Attack" uber tube amp as of yet, so no comparison there.


Well, you're comparing what is arguably the best solid state DIY amp in a balanced configuration with a value tube amp from china... so it's not really surprising that you prefer your beastie.
wink.gif
Quote:

Originally Posted by swt61 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I also feel that the K340 is not an all around headphone. For some genres it is unsurpassed IMHO, but Classic Rock, Blues etc... are better off with another headphone.


I do find older rock to be a little lackluster, but that is more due to the extremely quiet recordings that seem to be the norm there. Still, it's nothing a couple more ticks on the stepper wont solve.
biggrin.gif
 
Nov 3, 2008 at 5:18 PM Post #15 of 18

swt61

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Quote:

Originally Posted by philodox /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Well, you're comparing what is arguably the best solid state DIY amp in a balanced configuration with a value tube amp from china... so it's not really surprising that you prefer your beastie.
wink.gif



Yes, no argument there. And the Darkvoice 336i does a surprisingly good job of driving the K340 for what to my mind is a budget, entry level price.

You and I are both pushing the extreme on amp design. Myself with solid state and you with tubes. My only point was that you can get a tube like sound from some solid state amps. Again in general, and keeping a reasonable budget in mind I wholeheartedly agree with you and Rob.

Quote:

Originally Posted by philodox /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I do find older rock to be a little lackluster, but that is more due to the extremely quiet recordings that seem to be the norm there. Still, it's nothing a couple more ticks on the stepper wont solve.
biggrin.gif



I think they do a better job than most headphones at their pricepoint with even classic rock and blues, but I do have to say that I prefer the Sextett or HD-580 for those two genres (braces for the Sennheiser fallout that's undoubtedly coming, knowing Jay).
tongue.gif
 

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