i'm baffled by this hysterical response. I fell in love with my K501's while they were driven by an MG Head. I consider the combination to be "made in heaven." That's not to say that there aren't better amps for the K501's, or better headphones for the MG Head, but, especially at the price point of each, this is a great combination that can produce tremendous musical pleasure. At least, that's been my experience--and i'm certainly not a novice at this game.
maybe it would be helpful to have further explanation from Nick and Neruda. Nick acknowledges that he hasn't tried the combination. Has Neruda? Maybe they are able to divine problems here that i have overlooked.
Well I'm sitting here with an MG head DT and a pair of K501s, so yeah, I've tried them. To my ears, they sound hollow and bland off the Head, and they lack dynamics. They do retain their excellent soundstage and the highs sound good, but I still don't like them through this amp very much. They sound quite a bit better off my JMT-built CHA47, in fact. That's my opinion, take it or leave it.
The MG Head that Neruda is using is on loan from the joelongwood museum. It has the Wing mod (no negative feedback). If I recall correctly, the MG Head/K501 combo sounded significantly better to my ears, in the stock state, without the mod. It had a fuller, richer sound. The mod, for me, works best with the Senn HD600s. Neruda is correct in his assesment with the mod......the K501s sound pretty bad.
Hmmm... I'm actually enjoying the MG Head OTL with AKG 501's as we speak. I have a pair of EI Yugo EL84's and a Sovtek 5751 for the tubes. I have tried a NOS GE 5751 and a Philips 12AX7 and like the Sovtek 5751 best with the AKG's. Also, I have tried the amp with JJ EL84's with the GE 5751, but prefer what I am listening to right now. I'll have to try the AKG's with my CHA47 in a minute to decide if it's that much better... or worse.