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AKG K702's. I thought they were supposed to be good?? Studio Headphones
Old 7th September 2011
  #1
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sventvkg's Avatar
 

AKG K702's. I thought they were supposed to be good??

I got a pair for mixing at night and I hate them. I find them brittle, and thin. My Audio Technica ATH-M50's sound much better. Does anyone have a suggestion for an alternative that actually sounds good? I'm going to sell these AKG's..I can't see how anyone could say they sound good..What am I missing?
Old 7th September 2011
  #2
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Possibly your ATH m50s are your prob if they are your reference.
Assuming mine (m50s) are like everyone elses, they are a bit large in the bottom end, too mellow in the mids and generally inaccurate, in some ways quite opposite to the AKGs.
I know a lot love them but that's how I see them and I've used HP's a fair bit.

Hang with the AKGs , let them burn in and see where you're at; they won't have the fat M50 bass but ultimately i'm betting they'll tell you more.
Cheers, Ross
Old 7th September 2011
  #3
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How many hours burn-in have you done on them yet? Most headphones will sound a bit messed up and out of whack frequency-wise until you give them a fairly long burn-in period. My Grado 325i-s took about 20 hours of music playing before they weren't a horrible tinny mess.
Old 7th September 2011
  #4
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Yea well I know the ATM's are way fuller and softer in the mids than they should be. They are very forgiving and they are not my reference, just listening phones and tracking. I got the AKG's for mixing on high recommendations..However, I just looked on Amazon to all the reviews etc. The consensus seems to be that you have to burn the AKG's in for 400 hours!! That is insane..Seriously. People are burning them in 24/7 for 4 weeks..I want to use these things and don't want to wait a month for them to sound good ya know!! They should burn them in at the factory.
Old 7th September 2011
  #5
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Burn-in is a well-run myth.

If you don't like them from the box, return them or sell them if you can. The best way to assess a headphone is to listen to them yourself and feel them yourself. If you don't like them, then that's the only thing that matters.

Lots of stuff online is from people selling the stuff or justifying their own purchase and/or lack of experience.

If you get a chance to listen to your replacement headphones before buying them, do so. That is the only suggestion I would make (and it will help assess their comfort too).
Old 7th September 2011
  #6
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jayfield's Avatar
 

If you Google the 702's--all the Hi-FI headphone guys recommend a 100 hr or more burn in period. Mine smoothed out a lot after 100 plus hrs. I just left em running with a large variety of music, at a hot listening level.
Old 7th September 2011
  #7
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I burned mine in as well and think they sound great going through my benchmark dac1. In comparison to my focal twin 6s they're a nice compliment and seem to sound similar. Definitely a flatter headphone and not bass heavy at all. I guess the key is for you to mix on them for real and then see if it translates or not. Are you mixing very bass heavy or are your mixes thin?
Old 7th September 2011
  #8
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They are supposed to sound thin. I love them for classical music for their clarity and soundstage.
Old 7th September 2011
  #9
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Marando's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by sventvkg View Post
I got a pair for mixing at night and I hate them. I find them brittle, and thin. My Audio Technica ATH-M50's sound much better. Does anyone have a suggestion for an alternative that actually sounds good? I'm going to sell these AKG's..I can't see how anyone could say they sound good..What am I missing?
A few possible reasons:

1) The cans are brand new.. they don't sound fantastic at first, they need some time to get better! (No, this is not a myth, I actually tested this with a 3 year old K701 and a brand new K701, the difference is far from subtle!)

2) You are used to the sound of the ATH-M50's and in direct comparison, it might feel that the K702 is bad. Instead of saying it's bad, it's better to say it's different! (because it's not bad)

3) The headphone output is not good enough to make you appreciate the K702!
Old 7th September 2011
  #10
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Marando's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by sounder View Post
Burn-in is a well-run myth.
I once believed so too, but trust me, it's not a myth!

I did a comparison between a brand new K701 and a 3 year old K701. I didn't believe my ears, the difference whas not even subtle, it whas very easy to hear! Later, I whas thinking about it, and started to believe it might be because the headphone design might have changed.. (maybe they make them cheaper, to have a higher profit!)

Well.. this feeling whas wrong, because after the new K701 whas used allmost every day for 3 months, I compared them again. This time, they sounded, to me, identical! I tried to hear a difference, but in a blind test, I couldn't tell!

Believe what you want to believe.. I know for a fact that it's not a myth, at least not for the AKG K701.
Old 7th September 2011
  #11
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matucha's Avatar
I have to say it's true. A friend bought k701 and brought them to my place. They had quite ugly sounding 3-5kHz peak and it was painfull to listen on. Dissapointed, he decided to return them, but had no time to do so and gave them chance. After two weeks he came to do some mixing at my place and suggested if I want to hear them now. They sounded just right.
Old 7th September 2011
  #12
Quote:
Originally Posted by sounder View Post
Burn-in is a well-run myth...
I actually own a pair of 702's...IME the 'break-in' is not a myth and after a few hundred hours the sound improved. I'm not the only user who has noticed this. Most equipment of this type needs a mechanical 'break-in' period.

To the OP: the 702's might not be suited to you but it's worth reading the accounts of people who have noticed an improvement in audio quality after a break-in period.
Old 7th September 2011
  #13
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ATH-M50's are dog sh!t compared to the K702's...get your ears cleaned pronto!
Old 7th September 2011
  #14
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Well to each their own, of course, but my K701s were one of the most significant monitoring upgrades I ever purchased. I honestly don't know what I'd do without them. They give me absolutely crystal clear sound where I can see right into the back of the mix. A quick check of the bass balance on speakers (and this requirement is lessening over time) and I'm done!

And they do need time to settle in.

I was similarly underwhelmed by my Sony 7509HD, which have quite a following in some circles. I find them tubby and lacking any front-to-back depth. But some people turn out good mixes on them, so maybe it's just a case of what you're used to?
Old 7th September 2011
  #15
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fanriffic's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marando View Post
..3) The headphone output is not good enough to make you appreciate the K702!
Yep.

As well as all the burn-in biness,the 701/2's are notoriously insensitive and do need a decent level to get them moving...

..If you run them straight out of a standard computer phones socket,for example,they will sound like ****e compared to the M50's-which are far less picky about what they're getting.
Old 22nd September 2011
  #16
Gear Maniac
 

If my audio interface can drive my AKG K70x to a really loud level, but is not rated for the K70x's sensitivity (ie. I need to turn my headphone output gain knob past the 12 o' clock position for reference levels, but at maximum gain it's a dangerous level) does anyone still recommend me use a properly sensitive headphone amp to drive them?

So basically, is it that for you guys standard computer phone outs can't drive the K70x loud enough??? (because mine can) Or is it something else to do with the sensitivity (?) of the amp?
Old 22nd September 2011
  #17
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ipizzo's Avatar
 

You have to get used to them...
They are so flat that it is quite weird.
If you have no bottom end you might turn your bass up...
Old 30th September 2011
  #18
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I wanted to add that I started driving them with my Benchmark DAC-1 which made a word of difference. Crystal clean and very accurate.
Old 30th September 2011
  #19
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dickiefunk's Avatar
I had the 702's here for evaluation along with the Beyer Dynamic DT880 Pro's.

I personally preferred the DT880's. These sound like the headphones you could be after. I absolutely love mine!! Gorgeous sound
Old 30th September 2011
  #20
RiF
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reddirt View Post
Possibly your ATH m50s are your prob if they are your reference.
Assuming mine (m50s) are like everyone elses, they are a bit large in the bottom end, too mellow in the mids and generally inaccurate, in some ways quite opposite to the AKGs.
I know a lot love them but that's how I see them and I've used HP's a fair bit.

Hang with the AKGs , let them burn in and see where you're at; they won't have the fat M50 bass but ultimately i'm betting they'll tell you more.
Cheers, Ross
what he said!
Old 30th September 2011
  #21
Quote:
Originally Posted by dickiefunk View Post
I had the 702's here for evaluation along with the Beyer Dynamic DT880 Pro's.

I personally preferred the DT880's. These sound like the headphones you could be after. I absolutely love mine!! Gorgeous sound
I tried both. The 702 is thin, even after long use (I tested a friend's 1 yr old 702), but it is very detailed. It is more detailed in the mids than the DT880, which I ended up buying for simple reasons: I used the DT990 for over 10 years, it started to have issues with one driver. Since I always considered it too bass-heavy, the DT-880 was a natural choice. It is very similar but more pleasant and accurate in the lower frequencies.
Old 30th September 2011
  #22
Gear Maniac
 

additional opinion

Hi,

I thought I would chime in as I have both the ATH's and AKG;s in question -
I've gone through the burn in period, and like some other folks here,
are driving them with a DAC-1. I think they sound lovely for listening -
killer detail and separation.

I can't say I have mixed well with them - I seem to end up heavy around 100K
and shy around 1K when editing for any period of time with them.

I ended up finding final edits made with Grado 225's translated better.
For the record, I also tried the Grado 325's, but was not as successful.
Admittedly, I did not allow nearly the same burn time on those.

I still use the ATH's for tracking as the isolation is excellent, but they certainly
don't provide the detail of the others mentioned.

Oh, and not sure if it matters, but the AKG's I have are the K701's with
the fat pipe cable.

Anyway, I know this stuff is frustrating, and fairly personal. Best of luck
in your search - tons of data and opinions to sort through - sometimes
you just have to try them and see how you work with them.

MJH
Old 30th October 2011
  #23
Gear Maniac
 

Yea you need to try actually 'mixing' on them before you pass judgement, just thinking it 'sounds good' when you listen to it is not gonna cut it. This is because of the headphones' individual frequency response - the AKG's are really weak 70 hz and down, therefore you'll probably mix those a bit too strong if you touch them at all. There are other quirks and you'll figure them out over a few mixes. The good thing is is the AKG's as well as other top of the line headphones only have a few quirks and it don't take any effort to remember them when you mix. Same applies to top of the line monitors. At this price though all the monitors will have a bajillion quirks, as well as your room. Takes a long time to get used to, though you can just do some tone testing and write down everything.

At these prices it won't be the monitoring system at fault, it will be your skills.
Old 22nd April 2012
  #24
this thread is a bit old but i would like to add to this thread. i own 4 pairs of AKG headphones, 2 pairs of K240 studios(not mkII), a pair of K271(not MKII), and a pair of K702 headphones.in all truth it depends on your cabling. you benefit from the quality of the cable and the lack of vibrations from a headphone company of this caliber. K702's are outstanding imo if you have a high end quality cable running from your interface to your headphones. http://www.stefanaudioart.com can hook you up and you won't be let down in this department. i personally think the k240 studios are great but when compared to the k702's they lack punch, clarity and soundstage. they do "sound similar in ways though thats why i still use them regularly to reference(K240)
Old 22nd April 2012
  #25
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sventvkg's Avatar
 

I've found after the burn in and since I got used to them they are VERY VERY Accurate and detailed. I put my old ATM headphones on now and I can't stand the tubbiness..So, yea now I can see..They sound exactly like my studio monitors to be honest. VERY accurate.
Old 22nd April 2012
  #26
Gear Maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by sventvkg View Post
I've found after the burn in and since I got used to them they are VERY VERY Accurate and detailed. I put my old ATM headphones on now and I can't stand the tubbiness..So, yea now I can see..They sound exactly like my studio monitors to be honest. VERY accurate.
Mine sound like my studio monitors too - except I can't stand panning in them at all :( Otherwise they would be perfect
Old 22nd April 2012
  #27
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DarkSky Media's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by sventvkg View Post
I got a pair for mixing at night and I hate them. I find them brittle, and thin. My Audio Technica ATH-M50's sound much better. Does anyone have a suggestion for an alternative that actually sounds good? I'm going to sell these AKG's..I can't see how anyone could say they sound good..What am I missing?
I think the key point is that (burn-in and other elements in the chain aside) if the K702s are sounding brittle or thin, that may be telling you some things about the source material that the ATs are concealing or glossing over.

You absolutely don't want reference cans to flatter the source. Instead you want clarity and even brutal honesty. You need to be challenged to lift material to the point where it sounds organic and life-like on brutally honest transducers.

The leagues of "better" you're hearing from the ATHs may well be pretty lies.
Old 23rd April 2012
  #28
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkSky Media View Post
I think the key point is that (burn-in and other elements in the chain aside) if the K702s are sounding brittle or thin, that may be telling you some things about the source material that the ATs are concealing or glossing over.

You absolutely don't want reference cans to flatter the source. Instead you want clarity and even brutal honesty. You need to be challenged to lift material to the point where it sounds organic and life-like on brutally honest transducers.

The leagues of "better" you're hearing from the ATHs may well be pretty lies.
This is so true. I bring the ATH-M50 on location with me and everyone loves the sound. Then when they hear the tracks on their own playback systems they ask what happened to the sound. I play them back through the headphones again and they smile.
Old 20th April 2018
  #29
Gear Maniac
 

A late addition. I bought the AKG K702 a week ago and find it to have a fair amount of bass, although the sub-bass is pretty well rolled off. However, I'm also finding them to be sounding quite hifi, and a bit warm-sounding thanks to a bump from 80 Hz to 500Hz. This is not what I was expecting, nor what I was hoping for, because it caused my trial mix to be a bit light in the region covered by the bump. Furthermore, they are not as detailed as I was led to believe by all the reviews I'd been reading.

I've come across two contradictory frequency response graphs, one from the Russian reference-audio-analyzer.pro and the other, headroom.com. The first graph shows more treble response than the second, whilst the second shows the upper-bass bump that is absent from the the first graph. This led me to suspect that the first graph refers to the K702 that was made in Austria, whilst the second is related to the later Chinese manufactured version.

I sent an email to AKG asking if the design had been modified in order to make it more appealing to the larger numbers of audiophiles at the expense of the relatively small number of recording studio enthusiasts. They referred me to the representative here in the UK (what would he know?), and all he would say in his reply was that he wasn't aware of any change. Duh!

Mesurement's report AKG K 702 test and graphs - Reference Audio Analyzer

HeadRoom Headphone Graph Comparison Tool
Old 20th April 2018
  #30
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Are you celebrating 4/20? This was a run of the mill, “who makes better butter” thread that died six years ago (as it deserved). It doesn’t need to be a zombie thread, stumbling around in the present and putting the bite on the slow people.
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