The Absolute Best-Value under $20, better than KSC75!
May 15, 2007 at 8:08 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 41

AudioCats

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I think it is pretty safe to say that....... I am talking about the Koss BKH-3 (special edition KSC55 made for Broadcastvision). Ebay Koss store have had them for a long long time, and still have 20 left when I am writing this. The sales of these were apparently very slow, only a few pairs per month. Below is the link:
http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-Koss-BKH3-Be...QQcmdZViewItem
Shipping for one pair is very high, like $10 (the package delivery requires a signature, they don't just drop it off outside of your door, that kind of explains the high shipping cost). But if you buy three pairs, the shipping evens out to about $4 per pair, so the total cost per pair comes to $9.

Somebody found out about these phones and posted the info in the Koss A250 thread last year. Apparently some members here also bought and received the BKH-3's with their A250's, but I couldn't find a follow up evaluation. I noticed/saved the Koss store link in that A250 thread (thanks for posting!), and after much contemplation, broke down and ordered some.

What I received exceeded my expactation. I was expecting some kind of "KSC75 with a headband". Well, The BKH-3/KSC55's do use 60 ohm titanium drivers, but not exactly the same as the 75 drivers. The BKH/KSC55 driver construction is the same as the KSC35/SportaPro/PortaPro/GT5, but with titanium coated diaphragm. See the pictures for comparison(KSC75 = silver plastic; BKH3/KSC55= black plastic. The left foam pad is from KSC75, right one from BKH3).
The BKH headband is comfortable and convenient, I like it better than KSC75's clips.

And, I will say the BKH's sound better than the KSC75. The SQ comparison below is done between my KSC75 (no volumn control version, from Amazon; about 75 hr burn-in) and one of the BKH-3 I got (about one hour burn-in). I am not experienced in writing reviews, but I will try to do the best I can. I will also mix in some comparison with my GT5 (Koss 60 ohm non-coated)

Highs: KSC75 is bright, slightly harsh, and can get messy with some songs. I was hoping the burn-in will solve the problem, well, it seemed to get slightly better, but still not good enough, not as good as my GT5 drivers. The BKH3, at least the pair I was using, didn't sound as harsh as the KSC75. The difference is there, but not by much. This might have something to do with the housing structure, it is possible the KSC35 style flat-back housing allows less treble to be reflected back forward. The BKH's treble response is slightly better than the GT5.

Mids: BKH3, KSC75, GT5 are pretty similar. At least I couldn't tell much a difference. Again, I am no expert reviewer, to me the "mids" are human voice frequencies.

Bass: This is where the BKH3/KSC55 clearly have an edge over the KSC75. The CD I am most familiar with is CountingCrow's August and Everything After, between 0:0:10 to 0:0:12 in A Murder of One there is a very very low frequency rumble in the back ground, you almost "feel" it instead of hear it. (by the way, it will be hard to find it with a portable's headphone jack. You will need an amp of some kind, I guess most amp will do, I was using my KenWood receiver.) The reason I noticed it before was because my Beyer 990 told me it is there, and with my Senn 555 I can tell it is there too. Now I wasn't expecting this, but with the BKH3 I actually noticed that rumble too
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.....Put on my KSC75, no matter how hard I try to find it, there was nothing
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..... This means the BKH's bass clearly goes deeper. The bass difference between BKH and KSC75 is quite obvious, even with general listening I can tell the BKH has better bass than the KSC75, deeper and more substantial.
And this is with only one hour burn-in comparing to KSC75's 70 plus hours. I surely hope it only get better with more hours.

Versatility: This is not about where you can wear these phones, what I am talking about here is what you can "do" with them. To be honest, the original reason I bought these BKH was to use their drivers to put into closed headphone housings. Low priced closed phones generally don't sound good, but with a driver transplant they can sound acceptable (about KSC level, give or take a little). My GT5's drivers are now in my Sony CD180(over-the-ear, very comfy, can wear all day! And it sounds good, I prefer it over my iGrado
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). I have tried using KSC75's drivers before, but the 75 drivers, when installed into a small closed-back housing (tried the GT5 housings), lost all bass, I mean no bass at all. Putting the BKH drivers into the GT5 housing, and there is great bass. This means the BKH/KSC55 drivers can be used freely like the GT5/KSC35/SportaPro drivers to convert "bad-sounding but comfortable" headphones. And at this price, they are a super deal!

Anyway, just wanted to let you guys know how these BKH3 / KSC55's are. I'd say the BKH3 has everything I expected when I order the KSC75(and didn't get from the KSC75). I was disappointed with the KSC75, but am pleasantly surprised with the BKH. I guess you lose some, then you win some...
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It all works out
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At this moment there are still 20 sets left, get them while you can. Maybe Koss will bring out some more after this patch is sold out.

Have fun guys
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May 15, 2007 at 8:46 AM Post #4 of 41

Knuckledragger

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I have had a pair of KSC55s for over a year now and they are my favorite portable cans. They sound great unamped out of a B&W iPod 3rd gen (believed to have the best built in amp of any 'Pod.) After my HD-650s, my KSC55s are my most used cans. Am unclear on what the differences between the BKH3 and KSC55 are (apart from name) but if they sound even remotely similar, $15 is a steal for them.
 
May 15, 2007 at 9:21 AM Post #5 of 41

AudioCats

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I was using a Kenwood receiver's headphone jack.

I don't have KSC55, but since the BKH sound so good, my conclusion is the BKH3 = KSC55 with a company logo.

Somebody should get a pair of BKH3 and a pair of KSC55 and do a report. I won't be that guy, I am already very happy with my BKH's
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Guys, I was not trying to convince anybody to buy. I just wanted to let you guys know what I think about this super bargain. I'd rather nobody go buy them so if later I need more good drivers for projects I can go get more
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There is only warning about the BKH3(and likely the KSC55): the cable is thinner than I'd like. Being a single entry design, there is only one cable about the same diameter as the KSC75's (but the KSC75 has two, one to each side). I bought these phones mainly to get drivers so the thin cable will never be a problem for me. It probably will not be a problem for normal use, just I always like thicker, more robust cables.....

Any of you KSC55 user had problem with the 55's cable before? Need some feedback here....
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Have fun
 
May 15, 2007 at 9:31 AM Post #6 of 41

Knuckledragger

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Quote:

Originally Posted by AudioCats /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Any of you KSC55 user had problem with the 55's cable before? Need some feedback here.


In the 2+ years I've had my KSC-55s, I have managed to get the cable caught on more things than I care to mention (this is mostly the result of my own clumsiness) and I have yet to do any physical or electrical damage to the cord or the cans. I agree that the 55's cable is woefully thing, and the neckband is quite slender as well, but they have thusfar stood up to all the abuse I've heaped on them. I am tempted to buy a second (third?) pair, because at this point they are a key part of my mobile rig.
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May 15, 2007 at 9:37 AM Post #7 of 41

lordkelmain

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Bah... just got the KSC-75's, too. Int'l shipping's a pain, though. KSC-75's design I like a little better, though, so I suppose that justifies it.

- lk
 
May 15, 2007 at 12:26 PM Post #9 of 41

Gurra1980

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The missing bass of the ksc-75 is not a result of the drivers, it's a result of the clips, you can try to remove the clips and then just hold the ksc-75 against your ears the more pressure you put on them the more pronounced the bass gets and the less chrill the highs get. it is the drivers that is so frikkin good when it comes to koss. If you are in to modding you can modd them till you get the sound you like. Personaly I use them with portapro headband set on medium pressure and I have cut a hole in the fome (something like kramermodd) to get a little more detail.

I haven't tried the BKH-3 though, so I can't comment on those.
 
May 15, 2007 at 1:35 PM Post #10 of 41

AudioCats

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Gurra1980 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
The missing bass of the ksc-75 is not a result of the drivers, it's a result of the clips, you can try to remove the clips and then just hold the ksc-75 against your ears the more pressure you put on them the more pronounced the bass gets and the less chrill the highs get. .


No, the drivers clearly have something to do with it. When I was talking about that missing low rumble, I was not talking about how much they have, I was talking about if it is there AT ALL. With the KSC75, there was nothing.

The totally different reaction of BKH and KSC75 drivers in the same GT5 housing showed that too. The flat-back driver structure is not as cool looking as KSC75's round-back style, but it helps the SQ.
 
May 15, 2007 at 1:37 PM Post #11 of 41

scompton

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I have a KSC55 and hardly ever use it because the curve on the headband just behind the drivers hits my head just right on a ridge behind my ears. It's incredibly uncomfortable. They're without doubt the most uncomfortable headphones I've ever tried.
 
May 15, 2007 at 1:57 PM Post #12 of 41

kramer5150

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Its the same thing as a KSC-55. Do a search for that and you will find its generally hit or miss with a lot of folks. I remember it being a little uncomfortable, exerting pressure on my temples. But YMMV depending on fit.
 
May 15, 2007 at 3:14 PM Post #14 of 41

Gurra1980

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Quote:

Originally Posted by AudioCats /img/forum/go_quote.gif
No, the drivers clearly have something to do with it. When I was talking about that missing low rumble, I was not talking about how much they have, I was talking about if it is there AT ALL. With the KSC75, there was nothing.

The totally different reaction of BKH and KSC75 drivers in the same GT5 housing showed that too. The flat-back driver structure is not as cool looking as KSC75's round-back style, but it helps the SQ.



Ok, it must be a real killer headphone in such case, I have never missed any bass in my modded ksc75, maybe I should buy them? But I just got my 990 so I got to stop for now, unfortunately.
 

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