Sennheiser HD650 vs AKG K7XX
Feb 17, 2015 at 10:28 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 100

bpandbass

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 17, 2012
Posts
121
Likes
900
Location
Southern California
[size=small]Preface[/size]
 
I own both these headphones, and they are my two main open back at-home listening headphones. I have done reviews of each of them, and due to requests, I've decided to do a comprehensive comparison review of the two. 
 
 
Background of the two headphones
 
The background and history of the headphones can be found in their respective reviews:
 
HD650 Review
 
K7XX Review
 
But to sum it up, the HD650 debuted in 2003 and was Senn's flagship until the 2009 introduction of the HD800. Within these past 12 years it has gone through some retuning to give it a more lively sound from its initially dark and bassy character. I have the 2014 version. The K7XX, launched in 2014 as a collaboration between AKG and the bulk buying site Massdrop, comes from the K7 family, which originated with the K701, launched in 2006. Both headphones are the most recent models in their respective headphone lines. 
 
 
Build quality and form factor
 
 
Both headphones are around-ear-open-back dynamic headphones with detachable 3 meter straight cables, both feature predominantly plastic construction, and both have velour ear pads. 
 
The HD650 has a more conventional look to it with lacquered plastic furniture, a ratchet-adjusting spring steel headband with foam padding and metal ear capsule grills. It feels slightly plasticy but after owning it for some time the build quality feels solid enough, and the facts that the headphone can be disassembled mostly by hand, and spares are available for sale, are big pluses. The pivot for the ear cups can feel a bit loose or delicate, but it hasn't broken or snapped on me. The HD650 like its predecessors is made in Ireland and has hand-matched drivers. The cable is dual channeled, well shielded, thick, and terminates to both ear cups with two pins going to each driver, making it a cinch to convert to balanced. It terminates to a 6.35 mm jack, but comes with a 6.35 to 3.5 mm adaptor cable. 
 

 

 
 
The K7XX uses the traditional AKG design-albeit unconventional compared to other headphones-with twin-parallel rails forming the headband, earcups that pivot in a ball joint, and an unpadded headband that adjusts via elastic straps. The headband design has been around since the K240 Sextett from 1975, and while it is a proven design, long term durability remains a bit dubious due to the use of a more complicated architecture than the HD650, all-plastic components, and very little modularity and ability to easily replace parts. Nonetheless it still feels made. The K7XX unlike previous siblings is made in China, not Austria. The cable like its predecessors is oxygen-free copper, terminates to a 3.5 mm jack with a screw-on 6.35 mm adaptor. and is terminated via a mini XLR jack to the left side cup. The cable is a little skinny, isn't as supple as the HD650 cable, and the use of a 3 pin, single sided termination to only one cup means a much more difficult balanced conversion than the HD650. 
 

 

 
Neither headphone has the tank-like simplicity of a Beyerdynamic DT48, DT770, DT880 or DT150, but very few headphones do. Nonetheless, I will have to give the advantage to the HD650 in this category. Its ease of replacing parts, more robust build, and simplicity of converting to balanced makes it a more reliable long term use headphone. The identically-made HD580 Precision I owned was basically the older sibling to the HD650, and despite being well over 10 years old, was in great working order. If the longterm durability of the HD650's older sibling was anything to go by, the 650 should prove to be a reliable and sturdy headphone for years to come. 
 
 
Comfort
 
 
The HD650 is renowned for its high clamping force due to the use of spring steel in its headband. The velour pads are stiffly spring and are hard right out of the box. Eventually the pads will soften up, and the clamp will lessen somewhat, but it never goes away; it still remains a cozy fit. The ear cups are tilted slightly back to accommodate the backwards canting of many peoples' ears and the pad openings are elliptical. This presents an issue because due to the high clamping force, the already somewhat shallow pads can collapse under the pressure, causing my ears to press against the foam driver covers and leading to itchiness and discomfort. To remedy this, I stretch out the metal headband section and pivot the left cup forward so it fits over my ear at an angle. This gives just enough extra space in the ear cup to be comfortable, though on hotter days the HD650 can make my ears stuffy. The headband is cloth covered on the inside and has plenty of cushioning. Headband comfort has never been an issue for me. 
 

 
The K7XX is a remarkably comfortable headphone for someone like me with sensitive ears. The pads while not massive in their circular opening diameter are big enough for my ears to tuck inside. The cups are deeper, giving enough space so my ears do not press against the drivers. The pad stuffing is a big improvement over the K702 and K701, with a gel-like memory foam that retains its shape, while conforming perfectly to my head shape with no break in needed. It may feel a little hard at first, but it quickly settles in and becomes seamless. The lighter clamping force than the HD650 is a big plus in keeping these headphones comfortable for hours of wearing. While the leather headband does not have much padding, its smooth underside, pliability, and elastic tensioning all allow it to distribute pressure evenly across my hear, creating a sort of upside down "head hammock". 
 

 
While the HD650 still remains a comfortable headphone to wear, the advantage in my opinion goes to the K7XX due to its roomier ear cups and lighter clamp.
 
 
Sound Quality
 
 
Both headphones are situated comfortably in the mid-fi/mid-tier hifi category, and both have a warmish sound to them relative to neutral. However, there are some marked differences. The HD650 an audiophile open back with consumer-friendly sound, and the K7XX an analytical headphone with a little extra warmth. 
 
 
Treble
 
The HD650 has been called a dark or veiled headphone, and while this might have applied to earlier versions, nowadays with headphones becoming increasingly darker, the HD650 in my opinion is not as dark as it is warmish and sweet with a treble that is not recessed but well behaved and well suited to most recordings that are already brightly mastered and sibilant. Brightness is all relative, but in this day in age with music that is increasingly bright and headphones that are increasing dark, the HD650 strikes an excellent balance. There is good extension to the upper treble, but not in an airy or sparkly fashion. The mid treble is well behaved with sibilances that don't break past the acceptability barrier. There is some grain or a bit of haze in the lower treble, but this is mostly due to a little extra energy in this region that adds a level of sweetness to women singers and brass instruments. 
 
The K7XX while close does have a few differences. The treble has a little more extension, and while the HD650 is sweet, the K7XX is sparkly or a little more fizzy. It isn't what I would call a bright headphone, but it has a more revealing nature to it. There is some stored energy in the upper treble that gives more articulation and air. Symbols crash with a bit more flair than with the HD650. The sibilance range does have a couple extra decibels, but this happens more on a lower end amp, or when the K7XX is under-amplified or is playing an exceptionally sibilant track. I'd say it's a more source-revealing sibilance than a colored sibilance. I will discuss how amplification can alter the two later in the article. Unusually for an AKG, the K7XX has less lower treble, giving women vocalists and brass instruments a darker, and less sweet tone than the HD650. 
 
I'd call this a tie, with the HD650 having more presence and sweetness in its lower treble, and the K7XX having more sparkle and air up top, and having a slightly more source-revealing sibilance range. 
 
 
Soundstage
 
The HD650 has a soundstage that tends to remain on the intimate side, and while it sounds like an open back headphone, its sweeter sound and more rounded bass response tend to give it a more diffused instrument placement, or "3-blob imaging". It has good sense of a 3 dimensional surround sound, but has a more blurred, softer texture to its layering. 
 
The K7XX while not much more open than the HD650, has a sharper, better defined image to what one hears. There is better layering to the soundstage, and while the volume of space is about the same, the actual definition to it is better. There is a bit more air, which lends the K7XX an advantage with acoustic, orchestral and classical music.
 
Advantage: K7XX.
 
 
Bass
 
The bass on the HD650 is another characteristic trait, with lots of warmth, especially in the mid bass and upper bass. It isn't artificial sounding like consumer-oriented headphones, but is noticeably warmer sounding than most AKGs and the Beyerdynamic DT880 Pro. The accentuated mid bass gives vocals and mids a full and intimate, filled-in sound. It's something you quickly get used to, and will not find droning or artificial sounding. Timbre-wise it has a slightly wooden-drum-like texture, with the impact feeling strong in the chest. it makes the HD650 fantastic with pop, jazz fusion, RnB, West African and Middle Eastern traditional music, dance and house music, as well as electronica. Where the bass lacks somewhat is the sub bass. The HD650 exhibits that open-back characteristic trait of rolling off in the sub bass, and just not having that tightness or impact compared to a closed back. That makes it slightly unresolving in the low end, and not a very suitable headphone for hip-hop, taiko drumming and drum and bass. 
 
The K7XX on the other hand has a much quicker, tighter and deeper extending bass in the low end. It has low-end extension that many open backs simply do not have, and has noticeably better energy in the sub bass than the HD650. It rumbles down low when it needs to, but never feels boomy. Where the K7XX comes up short compared to the HD650 is in the mid to upper bass. It's more on the neutral side than the HD650, and while this gives the headphone a cleaner or quicker bass decay, it doesn't have that warm, intimate fill in that the HD650 has on mid-bassy genres. This by no means makes it lean or weak sounding, because it isn't. It still has plenty of thickness. It just won't sound as warm and thumpy with more synthesized music and electronic bass as the HD650 will. It's more analytical and tighter, whereas the HD650 is more bloomy or chesty. The quick bass decay and great extension toward the sub bass do mean that when amplified correctly, the K7XX will have good impact with some forms of drum and bass, well-mastered hip hop and taiko drumming. The quickness also makes it a little better for rock music than the HD650.
 
Bass is a draw between the K7XX and HD650, as while the HD650 has more mid bass and the K7XX has better low end bass, the two are equally good in different ways.
 
 
Mids
 
I'm elaborating on the mids lastly, because treble and bass make the mids on both headphones.
 
The HD650 due to its sweetened lower treble and warm, bloomy mid to upper bass has a very intimate and full midrange, with equally good male (lower mid range) and female (upper mid range) vocal presentation. The HD650 to my ears isn't a mids-muffled or a lazy-sounding headphone. It's slightly mid forward compared to the sub bass and upper treble, though not in a grating way. To my ears the HD650 is right where I like it. It's a more captivating midrange, though, so if you want a slightly less warm midrange, then the slightly-flatter-sounding HD600 might be a little better while keeping similar tonality. 
 
The K7XX is the more analytical sounding of the two, due to its flatter lower treble and upper bass. The K7XX has slightly shallower or a little drier midrange and vocal presentation than the HD650. This gives it a more analytical tone. It might not be quite as warm sounding, but isn't recessed or u/v-shaped. On a scale of midrange prominence, the HD650 would be the comparatively mid-centric headphone, the Beyerdynamic DT990 Pro and Premium 250 ohm models would be mid restrained/u shaped, and the K7XX and HD600 would be the more mid neutral headphones. 
 
Both headphones have equally good mids, it's just a matter or preference. The HD650 fulfills my laid back and warm headphone craving moods, whereas the K7XX fills the analytical, resolving headphone desires. 
 
 
For sound quality, it's a tie. The one clear advantage I would give in one of the four criteria would be soundstage, with the K7XX having better air, layering and imaging. Other than that it's a matter of taste. The HD650 is lush, while the K7XX is analytical.
 
 
Amplification:
 
Both headphones need dedicated headphones to get the most out of them, but their drivability isn't the same. For both headphones I use the Schiit Audio Modi DAC and the Lyr 2 hybrid tube and solid state headphone amplifier with the stock 6BZ7 Canadian tubes. 
 
The HD650 has a nominal impedance of 300 ohms, but at the 150 Hz range (upper mid bass area), it swings all the way up to 500 ohms. That said, it's a fairly sensitive headphone, so it doesn't necessarily take a hugely powerful headphones amplifier to get a usable sound and volume from it. In a pinch I have driven the HD650 from the headphone jack on my iPhone 5s and 2011 Macbook Pro, and the sound was moderately loud and quality acceptable. The HD650 scales up with better amplification. A dull sounding amplifier and DAC will often suck the bass impact out of the HD650, and an overly brash or forward sounding system will cause harshness. However, the HD650 still retains its sound signature more reliably across a wider variety of amps and DACs, making it easier to amplify and synergize with. As amps go, the HD650 sounds best with warmish and powerful sounding amps that can put out a healthy supply of voltage and current. The Objective 2 will drive the HD650 decently, but it will sound best plugged into a more powerful, more refined sounding amplifier. The OTC Woo Audio WA6 with its transparency and powerful mids and mid bass will make an excellent compliment to the HD650, as will the WA7 Fireflies, and the solid state Violectric HPA-V200 and V181. My Lyr 2 initially was a little dull sounding with its stock tubes, however the tubes have become a little more lively with more burn in. There is plenty of power in low gain, but in high gain it can become too aggressive in the treble and mids. The high impedance makes the HD650 suitable with OTL amps like the Bottlehead Crack, Little Dot MKIII and MKIV, and Woo Audio WA3, however I've been told that the Schiit Audio Valhalla 2 at least with its stock tubes is not a great match with the HD650 due to having sucked out mid bass. 
 
The K7XX has a 62 ohm impedance that remains constant from the sub bass to the upper treble. Because of the lower impedance, one might think that the K7XX is exceptionally easy to drive and needs a less powerful system than the HD650. Not so however, as the K7XX is more current hungry, and tends to be much more system-dependent than the HD650. The K7XX has a habit of sounding like what it is plugged into. If your source isn't clean or is lacking in power, the K7XX will sound recessed in the mids, weak in the bass, and brittle and sibilant in the treble. In addition, its 62 ohm impedance also means the K7XX does not play well with OTL tube amplifiers such as the ones I previously mentioned. It sounds best on tube amps with coupled transformers (OTC) with extra current, hybrid amplifiers, and solid state amplifiers from Violectric, Burson Audio, and Lehmann Audio (though those tend to be expensive). I find my Lyr 2 to have plenty of current and bass for the K7XX, and it makes for a great synergy, even moreso than the HD650. The Schiit Audio Asgard 2 will make a good pairing for the K7XX if money is a constraint, and the Vali will make a great sub 200 dollar energetic amp. 
 
It might seem a little strange to rank the two headphones in this category, but due to its higher impedance and higher sensitivity, as well as its ability to better retain its sound signature on different systems, the HD650 is an easier headphone to amplifier and work with on a wider variety of equipment. The ease of running it balanced is another advantage. The K7XX is deceptively challenging to work with, and is pickier with systems due to its more revealing tone and odd low impedance, current hungriness. It also doesn't help that its sound varies noticeably on different systems. The HD650 takes this round. 
 
And last but not least, Value
 
The HD650 retails for 400-500 dollars, and is widely available, whereas the K7XX goes for 200 dollars, but is only can be bought on Massdrop and it's limited edition, meaning that once the production ends, no more units for purchase, and if you have a chance to buy it you have to wait for the group buying sale to start. No returns accepted is also a big sting should you not like the K7XX. As resale goes the HD650 has held its value well, whereas the K7XX's residual value will not likely be as good. The 200 dollar purchase price might appear to be a much better value than the HD650, but remember that while the HD650 will sound good on a wider variety of systems, you will likely be paying more money for a system that sounds best with the K7XX, and will likely end up spending as much money as the HD650, if not more. The lower price of AKGs can often be a false economy, as the system that they will work best can often cost twice as much as the actual headphone. The HD650 will sound excellent on a system costing the same or even a little less than the headphone. While the K7XX is much cheaper than the HD650, its system pickiness and limited availability make it a lesser value. The HD650 takes the win in value. 
 
 
Conclusion
 
To wrap up this review, both headphones to me are equally good. For me they are great on my system and compliment one another well. So I'll take both. But for the average person it's going to be a different story. The warmer, more bloomy sound of the HD650 has found more supporters than detractors, and is a no-nonsense and choice and a more reliable option than the K7-series. The fact that the HD650 is less picky than the K7XX on systems and will sound better on more amplifiers makes it much easier to buy an amp and DAC, and be happy with the results. There isn't a bunch of messing around with USB connections, tubes, opamps, amps and DACs to get a great sound. The HD650 is a less fiddly headphone for the average person and much easier to achieve great synergy with. 
 

 
For me, it's a tie, but for the average person, I am giving the win to the HD650 in this comparison. 
 
Feb 18, 2015 at 8:05 PM Post #2 of 100

Headmusic

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 12, 2014
Posts
117
Likes
18
I"m still waiting for my K7XX's to arrive. I recently bought a pair of Q701's that I recently sold in favour of the K7XX's based on the online response, maybe I'm an idiot?
 
ANYHOO, when I bought the Q701's I favoured them over the HD600s and 650s both of which I found too bassy and fatiguing for my liking and definitely not as spacious with electronic
music. The thing I didn't like with the Q701's was their high-ends became way too trebly, even screechy for my liking, hence why I have taken the punt with these Chinese made cones.
 
Hopefully they live up to the online hype! 
 
Feb 19, 2015 at 12:26 AM Post #3 of 100

marts30

500+ Head-Fier
Joined
May 15, 2011
Posts
691
Likes
76
  I"m still waiting for my K7XX's to arrive. I recently bought a pair of Q701's that I recently sold in favour of the K7XX's based on the online response, maybe I'm an idiot?
 
ANYHOO, when I bought the Q701's I favoured them over the HD600s and 650s both of which I found too bassy and fatiguing for my liking and definitely not as spacious with electronic
music. The thing I didn't like with the Q701's was their high-ends became way too trebly, even screechy for my liking, hence why I have taken the punt with these Chinese made cones.
 
Hopefully they live up to the online hype! 

 
I did the same, got the q701 off MD and now own the K7XX. Easy win for the K7XX for me in every way. Comfort, looks, sound... not hearing any harsh treble. Bass extends further to give it a fuller sound overall. I'd go as far as to say they're the best all-rounder I've owned.
 
Feb 19, 2015 at 4:20 PM Post #4 of 100

kman1211

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Feb 13, 2012
Posts
4,958
Likes
2,861
Location
Edmond, OK
Nice review, I have the HD 650 and the K712 and I have to agree with much of this review despite the K712 sounding a bit different, the differences seem quite in line with my impressions. The K712 is so picky, it's almost a nightmare to get the right synergy. I find the HD 650 sounds a bit better on my system overall personally and I found the cable changes how they sound, I tried the stock HD 650 for the first time yesterday and I didn't realize how dark it sounded, though oddly sounded a bit more zesty in the treble with the stock cable than my aftermarket cable.
 
Regarding the HD 650 vs HD 600, the HD 600 sounds less refined, has a bit more energy in the treble, and less heavy bass. It also sounds slightly smeared in it's imaging compared to the HD 650, making the HD 600 sound a bit muffled compared to the HD 650 to my ears.
 
Feb 19, 2015 at 4:36 PM Post #5 of 100

bpandbass

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 17, 2012
Posts
121
Likes
900
Location
Southern California
Thank you. I noticed that the HD650 has some sibilance and midrange shoutiness in stock form, I'm not sure if it has to do with the Lyr 2 at high gain on the stock tubes, or the cable as it was with you. It's strange that my Lyr 2 is a less sibilant system with my K7XX than the HD650. What cable do you use for the HD650?
 
Feb 19, 2015 at 4:44 PM Post #6 of 100

kman1211

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Feb 13, 2012
Posts
4,958
Likes
2,861
Location
Edmond, OK
  Thank you. I noticed that the HD650 has some sibilance and midrange shoutiness in stock form, I'm not sure if it has to do with the Lyr 2 at high gain on the stock tubes, or the cable as it was with you. It's strange that my Lyr 2 is a less sibilant system with my K7XX than the HD650. What cable do you use for the HD650?

No problem. I can see that considering my brief experience with the stock cable, I'll have to listen to it more to come to a full conclusion though. I was trying to find a long cable that would stay put on my vintage HD 420 SL as the HD 600 cable and the aftermarket cables didn't want to stay plugged in, the original cable is too microphonic and the other cable is too short for desktop use, so I put the HD 650 cable on it which stayed put but was taken aback by the tonal shift towards darkness. Just a cheap cardas cable I got from ebay for like $50, originally got it a while back for my HD 545.
 
Feb 19, 2015 at 5:02 PM Post #7 of 100

kramer5150

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Sep 20, 2004
Posts
14,427
Likes
196
Nice write-up.  You covered all bases very thoroughly.  I have a K701 and HD650 and I agree on just about all your points... factoring in the slight differences between the 7xx and 701.
 
I also agree they're both equally great at what they do well, when you stack up all their pros and cons.   The AKG K700 series as a whole is more analytical than the HD650 which is more groovy-fun ... IMHO.
 
Amp and source-ing needs should not be understated here.  Two very different requirements for each.  Further, I find my K701 a much harder phone to amplify despite its much lower impedance.  Its also more source -finicky because of how it force-feeds detail resolution in the upper half of the spectrum.
 
Interesting take on value overall.  Generally, I do agree the HD650 will be more pleasant in an affordable setup, while the AKG family as a whole can be pretty brutal. 
 
Nice job!!
 
Feb 19, 2015 at 6:35 PM Post #8 of 100

bpandbass

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Dec 17, 2012
Posts
121
Likes
900
Location
Southern California
  Nice write-up.  You covered all bases very thoroughly.  I have a K701 and HD650 and I agree on just about all your points... factoring in the slight differences between the 7xx and 701.
 
I also agree they're both equally great at what they do well, when you stack up all their pros and cons.   The AKG K700 series as a whole is more analytical than the HD650 which is more groovy-fun ... IMHO.
 
Amp and source-ing needs should not be understated here.  Two very different requirements for each.  Further, I find my K701 a much harder phone to amplify despite its much lower impedance.  Its also more source -finicky because of how it force-feeds detail resolution in the upper half of the spectrum.
 
Interesting take on value overall.  Generally, I do agree the HD650 will be more pleasant in an affordable setup, while the AKG family as a whole can be pretty brutal. 
 
Nice job!!


Thanks. The HD600/650 is generally forgiving, while the K7 series tends to be much more highly strung and unforgiving. It's like a Porsche or a Mercedes vs. an Alfa Romeo or a Maserati. One might be a little more on the safe side, but is going to do the job and not complain. While the other is going to have more flair and more enjoyment when all the stars are aligned properly but for 90 percent of those who live with it will more likely than not be a dysfunctional love/hate relationship that will often result in a headache. AKGs tend to be the latter, though the HD800 has been a usurper in the unforgiving headphone competition. 
 
Feb 20, 2015 at 6:18 PM Post #9 of 100

cuiter23

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Mar 18, 2014
Posts
1,614
Likes
303
Location
Vancouver, Canada
Nice review, I have the HD 650 and the K712 and I have to agree with much of this review despite the K712 sounding a bit different, the differences seem quite in line with my impressions. The K712 is so picky, it's almost a nightmare to get the right synergy. I find the HD 650 sounds a bit better on my system overall personally and I found the cable changes how they sound, I tried the stock HD 650 for the first time yesterday and I didn't realize how dark it sounded, though oddly sounded a bit more zesty in the treble with the stock cable than my aftermarket cable.

Regarding the HD 650 vs HD 600, the HD 600 sounds less refined, has a bit more energy in the treble, and less heavy bass. It also sounds slightly smeared in it's imaging compared to the HD 650, making the HD 600 sound a bit muffled compared to the HD 650 to my ears.


This.

The K7XX presents such a good deal! Good for new buyers but kinda sucks for previous owners of the K701/702 as the K7XX imo devalues the 701 and more so the 702s.
 
Feb 20, 2015 at 11:57 PM Post #10 of 100

Headmusic

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Nov 12, 2014
Posts
117
Likes
18
   
I did the same, got the q701 off MD and now own the K7XX. Easy win for the K7XX for me in every way. Comfort, looks, sound... not hearing any harsh treble. Bass extends further to give it a fuller sound overall. I'd go as far as to say they're the best all-rounder I've owned.


Thanks for that! I guess I look forward to receiving them once they overcome the 'bad weather' delay! LOL!
 
Feb 22, 2015 at 9:22 AM Post #11 of 100

AntonDan

New Head-Fier
Joined
Jan 27, 2015
Posts
20
Likes
10
Nice and detailed review! 
  
I also ordered my k7xx's recently and I was looking for a good amp to go with them. 
Do you believe that the Schiit audio Magni 2 will be able to reach a good result with the K7xx? 

Thanks in advance! xD 
 
Feb 23, 2015 at 9:31 AM Post #12 of 100

xeizo

100+ Head-Fier
Joined
Jun 6, 2012
Posts
397
Likes
211
Location
Stockholm, Sweden
I have almost exactly the same experience from my K612 Pro vs HD600, well driven they sound very similar with K612 winning in larger soundstage, better layering and lower distorsion in the bass but HD600 winning in texturing, coherence and how to sound lifelike. Not so well driven HD600 wins by a large margin everytime, as it keeps the same sound signature just with lower resolution and sound volume, but K612 Pro can sound absolutely terrible if the amp is too weak. No bass, instead a tocking/tapping sound replacing bass and treble that sounds like someone crushing lots of glass.
 
In example, the popular Topping NX-1 makes K612 sound absolutely awful, while the same NX-1 drives lots of other cans exemplary and with very low distorsion.
 
Asus Xonar Essence ST has no problems driving K612, but one needs to use the middle gains setting of 64-300 Ohms, it sounds slightly dry though, but with very low distorsion levels in all registers.
 
Lucky enough for me so does my integrated stereo amp drive K612 Pro even better than Essence ST, making it almost gain the same warmth as HD600, very clean sounding and with great punch even at high volumes. I use the last integrated stereo amp that Sony produced 14 years ago(until the recently released Sony TA-A1ES), the TA-FB940R. It has a really amazing headphone out, without that HP-out I may have dissed the K612. As it is, I know K612 can and do sound great. But, with my current knowledge  I would hesitate choosing AKG if I had to shop for a new amp. It could be pretty hard to find the right synergy. HD600 is MUCH easier in that respect.
 
Feb 23, 2015 at 4:40 PM Post #13 of 100

cuiter23

Headphoneus Supremus
Joined
Mar 18, 2014
Posts
1,614
Likes
303
Location
Vancouver, Canada
Nice and detailed review! 

  

I also ordered my k7xx's recently and I was looking for a good amp to go with them. 

Do you believe that the Schiit audio Magni 2 will be able to reach a good result with the K7xx? 


Thanks in advance! xD 


Yes
 
Feb 23, 2015 at 5:02 PM Post #14 of 100

AntonDan

New Head-Fier
Joined
Jan 27, 2015
Posts
20
Likes
10
That's nice to hear :) since the recommendations for a k7xx amp were pretty expensive stuff and my budget right now is .. pretty tight
triportsad.gif

 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top