Yes, another "best amp for AKG K701"...help appreciated.
Jul 20, 2010 at 9:34 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 18

kactaplb

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My first post here. I'll be frank. I am completely new to the whole audiophile business, so please bear with me. I currently own the 701's and love them. Huge step up from the old sony mdr cd900s. I've researched dozens of threads, and I'm still at odds at what to get. It seems everyone is recommending every amp on the planet. Hopefully not asking for the impossible, but here goes...
 
  • Solid state-apparently tube seems to be better, but too much hassle. and I'll probably break it.
  • Sturdy construction.-so no DIY altoid can casings and such...
  • No DIY kits-I'm sure I suck at soldering
  • Portable-something with external power supply is ok, although internal battery preferred
  • Willing to spend ~300$ usd. However, I believe in diminishing returns, so anything cheaper that is comparable...
  • Something easy to find on the web currently- so no ancient, obscure, out of production amps. Nothing unusual, and preferrably something well known.
  • Listen mostly to classical, or something vocal heavy.
  • Source is laptop and zune 80. Not sure if I need a dac/amp combo? Sound card is most likely generic crap. For now I suppose I just want an amp, and maybe worry about dac later? If it matters, I'll be using the headphone out-not the lineout. Also prefer amp that has connections friendly to these 2 sources.-no weird converters and such please.
  • Most importantly, I want to keep the 701's as pure and straight foward as possible. So, I want the amp to make the 701s sound clean, and exactly the same as they were originally. I'm not opposed to a little sound coloration, but nothing huge. I got the akgs instead of grados/sennheisers/etc for a reason. I can almost hear the 701s straining to reach something, not just volume wise. Not sure what it is, hopefully amp will tell...
 
Sorry if I'm being unreasonable/unflexible. Surely there must be an "industry standard" amp that works well with the 701's. Hopefully this won't turn into a "I have this, this, this, and this amp that works well". I realize that sound is subjective, but still rather not have 30+ amps recommended to me. I'm new to this after all.
 
Thanks in advance.
 
Jul 25, 2010 at 10:35 PM Post #2 of 18

nitrotron

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For portable use, i doubt you can find something to drive that crazy mofo for $300. You are better of finding a desktop amp that would drive it decently for that price range. 
 
Jul 29, 2010 at 5:48 PM Post #3 of 18

Young Spade

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iBasso PB1 :)
Balanced output and the DAC from iBasso should be out any day now.
 
I have it and love it; does an amazing job at driving my K702s. You should definitely search around and read up about it. 
 
Jul 29, 2010 at 11:50 PM Post #4 of 18

HiFlight

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Quote:
iBasso PB1 :)
Balanced output and the DAC from iBasso should be out any day now.
 
I have it and love it; does an amazing job at driving my K702s. You should definitely search around and read up about it. 

X2 on the PB1 + Boomslang.
 
 
Jul 30, 2010 at 1:30 AM Post #5 of 18

Young Spade

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:) How much of a difference does the DAC make? I mean ~200 (I'm guessing is the price) is a lot to throw down after I just bought the amp... I'm also thinking of doing a balanced recable of the K702s so it might be an either/or for me... at least for a while...
 
Jul 30, 2010 at 4:59 AM Post #6 of 18

kactaplb

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Quote:
iBasso PB1 :)
Balanced output and the DAC from iBasso should be out any day now.
 
I have it and love it; does an amazing job at driving my K702s. You should definitely search around and read up about it. 



It really looks tempting. Although, for the 701s, is it high current/high voltage swing/neither? that is the most important for proper amping?
 
Quote:
For portable use, i doubt you can find something to drive that crazy mofo for $300. You are better of finding a desktop amp that would drive it decently for that price range. 


I'll look into desktop amps. Now that I think about it, portable amps aren't very...portable...Most likely going to have my laptop with me anyways.
 
Jul 30, 2010 at 2:19 PM Post #8 of 18

HiFlight

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Even single-ended the PB1 will have plenty of drive for your 702s.  

 
Quote:
wouldnt he have to go balanced to take advantage of the toucan?  i was considering dual entry on my k702 but couldnt find anyone that would do it and do a good job.

 
Jul 31, 2010 at 4:20 PM Post #11 of 18

The_Blood_Raven

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Wait, wait, wait.  There is a portable amp that can power K701s?  For $230 + Shipping no less?  I gave up ever buying the K701s when I was recommended an amp that was $900...
 
Why haven't I been told?
k701smile.gif

 
Jul 31, 2010 at 7:06 PM Post #12 of 18

Young Spade

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Quote:
Wait, wait, wait.  There is a portable amp that can power K701s?  For $230 + Shipping no less?  I gave up ever buying the K701s when I was recommended an amp that was $900...
 
Why haven't I been told?
k701smile.gif

Yea I know right? But SE does a great job at it if I do say so myself; I love the damn thing. I'm in the process of saving up to get them balanced (SE only uses half of the total power) to get better SQ. 
 
 
Jul 31, 2010 at 7:09 PM Post #14 of 18

Uncle Erik

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Just use an old receiver to power the K-701. More power than a portable and you might have a receiver around already or could find one at a thrift store.

I remain skeptical of portables - read Boomana's wiki for new Head-Fi'ers. AKGs are usually the toughest cans to drive from any manufacturer.
 
Jul 31, 2010 at 7:27 PM Post #15 of 18

vicktnguyen

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I drive my K702 with the LD MKVII and it does a great job compare to my MKIII. At highest gain setting it provides 800Mw -> 300 ohms, way more than enough to drive this baby and you have an option to go balance with the MKVII as well. I think i made the best purchase so far with this amp.   
 

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