Sennheiser HD650 vs AKG Q701 QJ - diyAudio
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Old 19th December 2012, 04:06 PM   #1
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Default Sennheiser HD650 vs AKG Q701 QJ

Hi All,

Looking to get a new set of headphones.

Main purpose is for testing DACs and assuming a dedicated headamp.

The Sennheiser HD650 and AKG Q701 have almost identical pricing.

The biggest technical difference i see between the two is the impedance.

The AKG ones have a fairly constant Z about 50ohms.

The Sennheiser once have a characteristic Z 300ohms@1KHz but varies quite a bit.

Click the image to open in full size.

Any suggestions/experiences with either?
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Old 19th December 2012, 05:28 PM   #2
EUVL is offline EUVL  Europe
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AK701 + DAO is my choice.




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Old 20th December 2012, 01:01 AM   #3
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Thanks Patrick

Any insight on their pros/cons?
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Old 20th December 2012, 01:46 AM   #4
cotdt is offline cotdt  United States
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HD650 sounds rolled up in the highs while K701 sounds thin and rolled off in the bass. They are like opposites. Denon D2000 is much more neutral.
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Old 20th December 2012, 01:50 AM   #5
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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haha D2000 natural? not bad headphones at all particularly after a few mods, but they are not natural, not even close. they bass is so much the best mods are adding damping to the frame so it doesnt vibrate. the mids are somewhat recessed and the highs, while pretty nice, can be a little sibilant with some music. (I owned them for ~5 years, oly sold mine recently, they were heavily modded by then)

HD600 really isnt that rolled in the highs if you use an amp with enough voltage swing, AKG are nice enough, but I find them tilted unnaturally in the highs and they can creak. not a big fan of the whole Princess Leia thing theyve got going on either.

in short, of the 2 you are comparing, for longterm listening, I would chose the hd600. the 701 are quite neutral and the bass extension is there, but there isnt quite enough of it and te highs can be a bit tilted IMO. so unfortunately it really will depend on your taste, are you able to get to a headfi meet or store to audition them?

Last edited by qusp; 20th December 2012 at 02:03 AM.
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Old 20th December 2012, 01:58 AM   #6
cotdt is offline cotdt  United States
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what headphones do you use that is more neutral than the D2000's, qusp?
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Old 20th December 2012, 02:11 AM   #7
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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all of them...D2000 are not even close to Neutral i'm afraid. still enjoyable for that bass thump.

HD600 are pretty neutral, my musicians monitors, JH-13 and Westone UM3X are quite neutral. I prefer a little boost in sub-bass for headphones and with everything else flat, not too much that it starts to dominate the mids, but it has to have good bass. I cant stand things that are called transparent and detailed because they lack real bass response; but the Denons were just too much for me in the end, I wasnt using them.

thats of what I own, but there are many options I could suggest here, most are in a much higher price-bracket though.

otherside: are these 2 about at your price limit?
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Old 20th December 2012, 02:48 AM   #8
rondr is offline rondr  United States
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I've HD580, HD650, K550 and K702. My go to is the 580.
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Old 20th December 2012, 02:50 AM   #9
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The phones and headamp are a combination, just like amps, speakers and room.

I built Patrick's DAO amp for my modded k701's and for the first time I can hear these phones "working properly".

However, as Jeremy says, the Senn 600, rather than the 650's, make for a relaxed sound.

Perhaps you might add the Beyer DT-880s to your "audition-list".
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Old 20th December 2012, 03:13 AM   #10
qusp is offline qusp  Australia
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yep, James has it there, the amp cannot be separated, I never actually owned the 701, just had several sets here for recabling and they either arent to my taste, or just none of my amps suited them. that makes them more picky with amp than I like, as I like different amps and it may mean they arent the best for testing different stuff. the hd600 really arent very picky, as long as there is a minimum of ~6-8v p2p voltage swing.

but you really should make an effort to try them, because they are very different headphones; different enough that you will almost definitely distinctly like one more than the other.
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