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my new headphones; WOW!

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Re: my new headphones; WOW!

Postby Antoni Scott » Wed Jan 31, 2018 7:59 am

All:
There seems to be a lot of controversy over headphones. Recently I had to replace my old AKG 701's because the left channel was intermittent. I tried fixing them myself - end of story !!!
So I was in the market for a new pair. I was perfectly satisfied with my old 701's but was curious about all the newer phones on the market.

When I first purchased my Hauptwerk system back in 2008 I fully considered having an eight channel audio system but quickly realized that a complimentary system that would do Hauptwerk justice would be way out of my budget. Two Hauptwerk "experts", Brett Milan and Dr. Maier (OrganArt) both recommended AKG 701's. Since their reputation rides on excellence, it was an easy recommendation to follow.
The AKG headphones were pricey, selling for around $500 but were available by careful shopping for about half that. It was recommended that I also purchase a headphone pre-amp ($100) since the output of the 701's was a bit low.

My first impression after hearing these headphones was "wow", how could headphones be this good. The response was flatter and cleaner than anything I heard up to that point. Clarity of sound, something I am admittedly obsessive about, was excellent. Dull, quiet stops, like the Metz -Cor de Nuit or the Bourdon were clean, something that I saw was missing with other brands of phones. Also, the 32' Bourdon, a stop that is basically a harmonically devoid drone was clearly audible. Quite remarkable.

Not to sound like a salesperson for AKG, the only downside is the lack of the low 32' rumble that our bodies feel. This is not the fault of the phones since this "feel" on our bodies is a result of the masses of air moving. I compliment my AKG's with a separate sub-woofer. The end result is a most realistic experience.

I am sure there are other headphones that equal or exceed AKG's but unless I could have the opportunity to compare them side by side at the same time, in the same environment and on the same organ, I wouldn't take the chance of making the wrong decision. Also, where do you draw the line on price ? How much better are $5000 headphones vs $250 AKG's ?

Antoni
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Re: my new headphones; WOW!

Postby sonar11 » Wed Jan 31, 2018 1:07 pm

Those of you who wear headphones, are you not concerned about damaging your hearing? Aren't speakers easier on your ears than headphones, even when SPL levels are equivalent?
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Re: my new headphones; WOW!

Postby Andrew Grahame » Wed Jan 31, 2018 1:44 pm

Hello Sonar11,

In a word - no. I use the volume control.

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Re: my new headphones; WOW!

Postby engrssc » Wed Jan 31, 2018 1:46 pm

Andrew Grahame wrote:By the time I was well enough to go back to work and collect them I'd run out of time to fully burn them in and test them within the retailer's return/exchange period. There's every chance that if I'd been able to set them up to run from a repeating audio source 24/7 for two weeks that they could have sounded much better



I don't follow why a quality issue like the burn by the end user shouldn't, instead, be done by the manufacturer.

Rgds,
Ed
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Re: my new headphones; WOW!

Postby Andrew Grahame » Wed Jan 31, 2018 2:53 pm

Agreed. They lost a sale in this instance, so one has to wonder how many other sales have been lost in similar fashion.
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Re: my new headphones; WOW!

Postby johnstump_organist » Wed Jan 31, 2018 3:12 pm

On the subject of "burn-in", the manufacturer will probably tell you it is a myth and that their product is ready for use as it leaves the factory. You can google "headphone burn-in, fact or fiction" and find many opinions. But even if it is true that burn-in is needed, it would be a costly procedure to have some place to hook up every headphone set and play 100-300 hours of music into them before leaving the factory. It would add to the cost I would imagine.
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