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European leaders in professional audio deliver the AKG K701, a top-of-the-line full-size headphone with astonishing clarity, 'up-front' detail resolution and true competence across the musical spectrum. The K 701 are nowhere near their acoustic potential out of the box; patience and a long burn-in period gets rewarded with pristine accuracy and an expansive, spacious soundstage image that directly competes with $1,000 cans. Highly recommended world-class audiophile sound at a WAY lower price than many headphones of this caliber.
What's In The Box:
AKG Acoustics in Austria has brought their considerable audio engineering skills into sharp focus on their most high-end dynamic headphone design and produced an astonishingly superb-sounding pair of cans in their flagship K701 model. Getting it absolutely right at this demanding level of reference-grade audio performance is tough and the K701 gets pretty darn near perfection -- especially impressive given the K701's nicely within-reach price versus other cans of this performance caliber. These headphones deliver a clean and punchy sound, articulate and completely clear over the full audio spectrum. Accurate musical detail lovers should appreciate the tightly focused bottom-end control of these headphones while classical, orchestral and acoustic music listeners will likewise love the fact that the dynamic control moves perfectly up the frequency range to distinctly articulate every finger pluck and rosin-on-gut string texture in the mix. About the only thing that we can possibly say negatively about these headphones is that those who like a very laid-back, mellow-sounding, or heavy deep bass presentation might want to look elsewhere since these are a very highly refined, analytical 'audiophile-oriented' headphones that deliver a deeply expansive soundstage image along with a textural detail and a liquid immediacy that demands your attention. And oh!...what a lovely musical demand it is!
We highly appreciate when a headphone manufacturer does a nice job evolving their products and in this case AKG has done more than just a nice job. These cans have a number of unique features that create a pretty dramatic improvement over previous AKG 'best-of-category' headphones. Their audio response is directly improved by a brand-new proprietary AKG Varimotion diaphragm that is designed to provide better pistonic motion and acoustic control. In addition, a revolutionary flat-wound voice coil design allows for greater concentrations of the magnetic field within the voice coil, thus driving the element diaphragm with more authority, which delivers a cleaner, ultra-articulate sound. Our HeadRoom experience with the K701 is that it requires a REALLY extensive chunk of burn-in / play-time to fully 'relax' sonically & sound its very best, so please assume a MINIMUM 300 hours of play-time before the full audio pleasure of these cans is completely realized. The new 'ergonomically-perfect' earcup ear pads are a soft velour-type material, very comfortable, and are designed to point the driver at the ear for a more correct listening angle. The high-end oxygen-free copper headphone cable is 'bi-wired', which we assume means the return channel for each driver remains separate until it reaches the common ground connection on the 1/4' plug. We think the K701's classic white color scheme is quite striking and visually effective. And if you don't particularly like the color, you'll still love how amazingly light and comfortable these headphones feel on the head with their well-designed, albeit slightly oversize ergonomics. An absolutely world-class A-1 audiophile headphone earns a hearty HeadRoom recommendation. GREAT job, AKG Austria!
Headphone Amplifier: For listeners wishing to use the AKG K701 with portable players like an iPod, iPad, mp3 player or computers, a dedicated headphone amp becomes a must for maximized audio performance due to the K701's low sensitivity, despite its fairly efficient 62 Ohm impedance. No harm using the K701 headphones sans amp, but it may likely sound a bit thin, dynamically flat or 'choked off' direct from low-power portables.
AKG K 701 Frequency Response
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