Upgrade Advice: AD700 --> K701 for Classical?
Jun 27, 2008 at 1:29 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 28

StratCat

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To be driven from my Zero's HP Jack, as in my sig, at least initially. These would be prominently for classical, replacing the AD700's in my sig.

I'll consider adding a moderate priced home-use SS amp at some point (LD MKV or similar?), but doubt I'll get into tubes at this point in time, at least not before a SS amp, anyway.

I'm hoping for something similar to the AD700's (good mids and highs, detailed, wide soundstage, "open and airy"), but with "more of the same" and "higher quality/refinement". A mildly rolled off bass befitting classical listening is acceptable, but ideally I'd like a bit more bass than the AD700's.

Anyone here have/had both cans and care to opine?

Thx.
 
Jun 27, 2008 at 1:44 PM Post #2 of 28

Caution

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I've heard both, the K701 is a big jump from the AD700's you get more soundstage, infinitely better instrument separation, better timbre a lot more refined and, they sound a lot more cleaner as well. AD700 is a nice phone in it's price range, but the K701 is in a completely different league when amped properly. And this was when both were listened to for ~5 minutes out of a mad ear+ and an ear max pro.
 
Jun 27, 2008 at 9:26 PM Post #3 of 28

StratCat

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Caution -

Thx for the reply. Yeah, your description was the info I was looking for, in general terms. Like I said, I really am looking for something similar to the AD7000 signature, but "higher quality" or "more refined", if that makes sense? I now those are ambigous non-specific terms, but that's the best description I can think of. That, along with a bit more bass and overall "power".

I'm not sure if the K701's will require more amping than my Zero's HP Amp section can supply, so I posed this question in the "Zero Thread", which can be accessed via the "Team Zero" link in my sig.

Thx again for the reply.
 
Jun 27, 2008 at 10:59 PM Post #4 of 28

JMCIII

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Caution /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I've heard both, the K701 is a big jump from the AD700's you get more soundstage, infinitely better instrument separation, better timbre a lot more refined and, they sound a lot more cleaner as well. AD700 is a nice phone in it's price range, but the K701 is in a completely different league when amped properly. And this was when both were listened to for ~5 minutes out of a mad ear+ and an ear max pro.



Agree completely. The K701s are in another league from the AD700s - on any music.
 
Jun 28, 2008 at 3:29 AM Post #5 of 28

wae5

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I have the MIV SE and the MKV and listen to classical music. I recommend the MKIV before the MKV because it sounds like a fine instrument that's specially made to sing with classical music. If price is a consideration, I'd look at the MKIII because of the good things I've read about it here at HeadFi. As for an upgrade to the AD700, the HD600 and the DT880 are obvious choices as is the K701 though it's my least favorite phone among the ones I've mentioned because I can't wear it for more than an hour. I own all the phones in this post and if I could keep only one it would be the HD600 because it's easy to drive and improves with good amplification. If I could sneak in another phone it would be the SR325i. While it's not considered to be a classical phone and I would never recommend it before someone has one of these other phones, sometimes I'm bored sitting in the orchestra and the SR325i lets me stand next to the conductor. Headphones are all about fun and the very nature of the beast forces you do it your way so never let anyone tell you you can't enjoy a phone like the SR325i because it's not considered to be a classical music phone.
 
Jun 28, 2008 at 3:43 AM Post #6 of 28

Caution

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Quote:

Originally Posted by StratCat /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Like I said, I really am looking for something similar to the AD7000 signature, but "higher quality" or "more refined", if that makes sense? I now those are ambigous non-specific terms, but that's the best description I can think of. That, along with a bit more bass and overall "power".


Ah if thats the case, the K701's may not be for you, they're not very similiar to the AD700's at all, plus amping them will also be a hassle. But I second the option on looking into the HD600's and 880's, they are more similiar to the AD700 than the 701's, the 701's are way more cleaner/sterile compared to the other phones mentioned. All 3 of the headphones are in a completely different league to the AD700's when amped correctly.
 
Jun 28, 2008 at 6:24 AM Post #7 of 28

StratCat

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Quote:

Originally Posted by wae5 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
I have the MIV SE and the MKV and listen to classical music. I recommend the MKIV before the MKV because it sounds like a fine instrument that's especially made to sing with classical music.


Actually, for classical, I suspected a tube amp (LD MKIII/IV) would be the WTG. I'm just not sure if I'm ready for any added learning curve and issues involved with tubes this early in, and figured I'd initially use my new Zero's built-in HP amp, and add a SS amp as desired (LD MKV?), and then do a tube amp further in, somewhere. I listen to maybe 40% classical, and a mixture of all else. But, who knows, since my Denon D2000's sound reasonably decent directly out of the Zero, and I am asking for advice here on cans for classical, I might get impulsive. But firstly I'd like to demo and settle on some cans.

Quote:

If I could sneak in another phone it would be the SR325i.


Absolutely, all suggestions welcome! This idea of upgrading my "classical" listening was purely an impulsive act. And coincidently before I got the idea of getting some K701's yesterday, I was thinking of trying some Grado's just to hear the Grado sound, and in order to round out my can collection (see my sig). SR325i's were one of the Grados I was looking at. I was thinking Grados might bring out the mids in Blues and Rock that I occasionally feel are missing in my D2000's.
 
Jun 28, 2008 at 6:35 AM Post #8 of 28

StratCat

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Caution /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Ah if thats the case, the K701's may not be for you, they're not very similiar to the AD700's at all, plus amping them will also be a hassle. But I second the option on looking into the HD600's and 880's [...]


Sorry for any confusion.

Honestly, I wasn't aware the DT880's were open backed, 'till mentioned by yourself and wae5. I was aware AKG 701/501's had good reps for classical, tho. And yes, I'm not at all sure I want to get into amping immediately, but the Zero in my sig is flexible in that I can use the DAC outputs to easily add add an amp while keeping what I currently have. I just felt that I would currently use the Zero "as is" to find a set of cans with a sound signature I like, firstly. Then externally amp if/when I desired.
 
Jun 28, 2008 at 6:43 AM Post #9 of 28

StratCat

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Hrm -

Apparently the DT880's come in several flavors: Pro, and non-Pro. 2003 and 2005. And from a cursory glance at the Beyer website, it was not easy to discearn amonst them.

Is anyone familiar with the DT880 varieties, that cares to briefly explain the differences?

Thx.

I'll continue to poke around the site and do some searches here in Head-fi..
 
Jun 28, 2008 at 12:20 PM Post #10 of 28

latershow

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Quote:

Originally Posted by StratCat /img/forum/go_quote.gif

Is anyone familiar with the DT880 varieties, that cares to briefly explain the differences?



AFAIK the Pro and non-Pro are exactly the same sonically, the only difference being cosmetic. I believe one has a coiled cable vs straight cable or something like that.

The 2003 vs 2005 debate is more complicated, sonically speaking. The 2005 edition look a lot nicer to me personally, having a more rounder sleeker appearance compared to the boxy earcup design of the 2003 edition. Soundwise they are different, visit Headphone Reviews :: Beyerdynamic Headphones
 
Jun 28, 2008 at 6:52 PM Post #11 of 28

Caution

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well you might want to check this thread if you want to read more about the 880s http://www.head-fi.org/forums/f4/bey...80-wow-248436/

smily_headphones1.gif


Basically like later show mentioned, the Pro have a coiled cable and a different headband with more clamping force, which does have some effect sonically. Not sure how big the difference is, but I think it would be very subtle :x don't quote me on that though.

btw the 880s are actually semi open semi closed, but imo its fair to say they are an open phone, as in they are more open than closed :p
 
Jun 28, 2008 at 8:03 PM Post #12 of 28

wae5

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Quote:

Originally Posted by StratCat /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Actually, for classical, I suspected a tube amp (LD MKIII/IV) would be the WTG. I'm just not sure if I'm ready for any added learning curve and issues involved with tubes this early in...


Just as you don’t need to re-cable your phones to enjoy them, you don’t need to roll tubes to enjoy your tube amp so there’s nothing esoteric or complicated about a tube amp. However, unlike a solid state amp that has only one basic flavor, good tube amps like the LD MKIII and MKIV, allow you to change their flavor by changing their tubes. You never need to do this if you don’t want to, but before you buy a tube amp, it’s always a good idea to check here at HeadFi to see what that specific amp's tube rolling possibilities are because it's nice to know what you could do even if you never actually do it.
 
Jun 29, 2008 at 6:23 AM Post #13 of 28

StratCat

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Quote:

Originally Posted by wae5 /img/forum/go_quote.gif
Just as you don’t need to re-cable your phones to enjoy them, you don’t need to roll tubes to enjoy your tube amp so there’s nothing esoteric or complicated about a tube amp. However, unlike a solid state amp that has only one basic flavor, good tube amps like the LD MKIII and MKIV, allow you to change their flavor by changing their tubes. You never need to do this if you don’t want to, but before you buy a tube amp, it’s always a good idea to check here at HeadFi to see what that specific amp's tube rolling possibilities are because it's nice to know what you could do even if you never actually do it.


wae5,

Did anyone ever tell you that you make some pretty persuasive argument? :wink:

I really do appreciate the advice, thx again.
 
Jun 29, 2008 at 6:47 AM Post #14 of 28

StratCat

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@Caution & wae5: Thanks for sticking with this thread, clarifying, and hanging in there thru multiple posts and visits. It definitely was appreciated.

I really hadn't thought of the DT880's, and honestly, wasn't familiar with Beyers, except thru passing. But after researching for a while, the DT880's definitely seem worth a listen given my current set-up and purposes. So, I'm ordering a pair from a national e-tailor for 230 USD shipped, which seems a decent deal for going thru a well established national house, with full return and refund privileges if I so desire. Thanks for suggesting a set of cans I hadn't thought of.

Hopefully they'll be here mid week.

I'm may also try to get some K701's in-house too, if possible, just to hear their sound signature.

Of course, I'll be leaving feedback here.

@All: Thanks much, everyone, for your opinions.
 
Jun 29, 2008 at 8:08 PM Post #15 of 28

wae5

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because I posted in the HT880 sucked out mids thread.
tongue.gif


StratCat;4401639 said:
Argh!

I'm only minutes from pulling the trigger on some new current DT880's from Amazon, after days of research, and then I run into this thread?

I don't know if I should laugh or cry?

O.K., I guess I'll have a Sunday morning laugh as I listen to my AD700's, and perhaps keep my money in my pocket until I get impulsive again! (that should be, uh, at least 10 mins)

WARNING! HARD SELL AHEAD!

I received my HT880 from Amazon a week ago with the idea of trying them for a few weeks and returning them if it didn't like them. At first I thought they were bland and unexciting but this soon changed. They've opened up nicely now so they've become my most listened to phones because they keep surprising me in unexpected ways. They're open, airy and transparent in ways I always wanted my HD600s to be and in my system they don’t have that mid bass hump alluded to here. I think this may be because they’re amost a straight wire with no gain so they're very revealing of flaws in the system. I have the AD700 too and I like them but the HT880 is a much better beast. Convincing someone to try a phone is like convincing them to buy a bottle of wine without offering them a swig first so it comes down to this: I know they’re better than the AD700s and they’re even better than my HD600s. Trying the DT880 is risk free because Amazon will let you return it if you don't like them and they're even throwing in a free pair of good IEMs to sweeten the deal. The only reason not to buy them is because the HT880 is so good, it may reveal flaws in your system you're not ready to fix. I wish every tech toy had this problem.
 

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