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AKG Q701 - Highly Rated Headphones - Massdrop - $162.98 USD Delivered!

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Hi Guys,

Just noticed Massdrop has a drop going for the AKG Q701s!!

At 162.98 USD delivered, it is an AMAZING price.
Amazon has them for 192-195 USD + p/h depending on the colour and eBay/staticice starts at 299/265 AUD + p/h respectively so it smashes those too!

There have already been 190+ purchases in just the FIRST day of the drop! That shows just how popular these little babies are!

Here are some reviews for the item:
http://www.whathifi.com/review/akg-q701
http://www.innerfidelity.com/content/akg-quincy-jones-q701
http://www.head-fi.org/t/546591/akg-q701-review


Here are also some specs:

AKG
Flat-wire voice-coil technology
Varimotion two layer diaphragm
Neodymium magnet system
3D cut ear pads
Cushioned genuine leather headband
Individually tested and serialized
Frequency response: 10 Hz - 39.8 kHz
Maximum input power: 200 mW
Input impedance: 62 Ohms
Sensitivity: 105 dB SPL/V
Hard gold-plated jack plug and contacts
8.29 oz (235 g)

Included:
10 ft (3.05 m) cable
20 ft (6.10 m) cable
1/8 in (3.5 mm) to 1/4 in (6.3 mm) adaptor


You get a choice between Lime Green, White and Black.
Plus, Quincy Jones Beats Dr. Dre anyday of the week! Pun intended.

Please note that these are the manufactured in China ones as they're straight from AKG. You can't really get the Austrian made ones anymore from what I understand. At least not new.

Also, you'll be wanting to get a decent headphone amplifier for these. Although they are rated at 62 ohms impedance, they are notoriously a bit more difficult to drive and something like the Little Dot MKIII or a Matrix M-Stage would work really well with them. The Asus Xonar ST/STX cards aren't too bad with them either but a dedicated headphone amplifier is better! It also doesn't hurt to have a good DAC instead of the normal headphone ports from onboard soundcards/MBPs and such.

Enjoy and let me know how you guys go!!!!

Edit. https://www.massdrop.com/buy/akg-q701-audiophile-headphones?... - is the link to view it without signing up with Massdrop. Thanks 32768.

Youtube link:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JEweybAb5ZY just for the hell of it.

Oh and I forgot to mention that these headphones are known to require a significant amount of break-in time (100 hours +) to really get its true signature. Never believed in breaking in until I had to do it for a similar set in the K712s.

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closed Comments

  •  

    need acct to see the deal? huh?

  •  

    Oh yeah. Forgot to mention that. But it's not a big deal. Just sign up. There used to be a workaround to view it as a guest but it doesn't work anymore.

  • +1 vote

    bugger… i paid $250 from amazon. note: the current q701s are made in china, not austria like the old ones.

    • +3 votes

      I actually prefer the China made version, as the headband is softer and more comfortable compared to the very hard & bumpy band the made in Austria model had.

      Q701's are easily my fave set of headphones out of all the one's I've listened to. It's a steal at this price.

  •  

    Yep. Mentioned that as well I believe. If you want the Austrian ones, you'll have to probably buy 2nd hand but honestly, it's really not a big deal.

  •  

    Wait are these the AKG 701's or the 702's??

    Pictures show a removable cable which would be 702's…

    But everything else suggests 701's. And there's no mention in the specs:

    AKG
    Flat-wire voice-coil technology
    Varimotion two layer diaphragm
    Neodymium magnet system
    3D cut ear pads
    Cushioned genuine leather headband
    Individually tested and serialized
    Frequency response: 10 Hz - 39.8 kHz
    Maximum input power: 200 mW
    Input impedance: 62 Ohms
    Sensitivity: 105 dB SPL/V
    Hard gold-plated jack plug and contacts
    8.29 oz (235 g)

  • +9 votes

    Fantastic deal. Bit disappointed that they shifted manufacturing to China and I hope that that did not impact upon build quality/quality control.

    I have the Made in Austria version and these are fantastic for the price.

    BEWARE #1 that a powerful headphone amplifier is a MUST! I would not recommend using the Asus ST/STX's amplifier to power them if you want to get the most out of the Q701. The biggest issue with underpowering such headphones is the bass tends to sound less impactful and refined. The Matrix M-Stage is a very good amp. Don't bother with the little portable amplifiers either.

    BEWARE #2 a decent source is required. Don't bother with icky on-board DACs that come with your motherboard. Asus ST is a good choice if you need a soundcard.

    BEWARE #3 don't expect booming bass. While the bass extends nice and low it does not have a high impact/rumble. It is a very balanced sounding headphone. Rest assured the bass is there but it is very controlled.

    •  

      I agree about the headphone amplifiers. The ST/STX is OK if you set it on extra high gain but it won't sound nearly as good as a dedicated headphone amplifier. A lot of gamers still prefer to use it with the ST/STX as it allows the use of Dolby Headphones and such for gaming.

      Massdrop usually have a few decent ones (amplifiers) on and the Mayflower O2/ODAC (currently listed) combination isn't a bad one to start using with these.

      •  

        I forgot about the 02, a nice little amp.

        •  

          Yeah man. They had the Little Dot MK IV SE on earlier and I hesitated and missed out on it. T-T. Should've gone there.

      •  

        The ST/STX is OK if you set it on extra high gain but it won't sound nearly as good as a dedicated headphone amplifier.

        I'm not sure if I agree. The difference between my STX and Matrix M-stage with headphones considered demanding (HD650, 600 ohm Beyerdynamics, and briefly an LCD-2) is very, very small, to the point of being unnoticeable if you're not listening for it. Conventional audiophile wisdom favours dedicated amps but the ST/STX has tons of power and measures superlatively.

        The Little Dot Mk IV on the other hand sounds horrible. Loads and loads of audible distortion. IMO you dodged a bullet there…

        •  

          Oh really? I read that it was a very popular combination with the AKGs.

          And I think the main reason I noticed a difference between the Matrix and ST/STX was that when I swapped to a dedicated amplifier, I also did a bit of amp-rolling while I didn't bother with the ST/STX.

          And again, I used the K712s so there might be another reason I noticed something. But then, it could've been placebo as well. :D

        •  

          I haven't tried the AKG 701/702, perhaps that's it. I did get the M-stage opamp upgrade but never compared it to stock.

          Then again, I'm currently listening to a Grado SR80i plugged into my phone and enjoying it almost as much as HD650/M-stage/STX… maybe I'm just crazy ;)

        •  

          What Op-Amp are you using for the M-Stage if I may ask?

          I was on the LM4562 then tried the Muses01. Not sure if I got a fake from Amazon though as to me, it sounds a bit muddier but I'm giving it a few days to break in as I only got it yesterday.

        •  

          OPA627 class A biased. Only listened to the original configuration briefly but I didn't notice any significant differences.

        •  

          Ah righto.

          I just purchased some LME49990 to try with them so hopefully they'll sound better than the Muses01.

          Cheers.

      • +1 vote

        The Aune T1 MK2 is also on drop at the moment. Good little amp with the right tube. using mine now with the Amperex Golden Globe.

    •  

      In regards to issue #3, some people have tried the following mod for the headphones:

      http://www.reddit.com/r/headphones/comments/1h885z/

      Essentially just swapping out the foam pads to slightly change the sound.

      I've had a mate try it and he says he can't tell the difference between his modded one and the more expensive K712s.

      •  

        where do you buy the replacement pads from?

        •  

          Looks like the reddit thread linked is by an Australian and he spent over $100 on getting the pads. You are better off putting that money towards a DAC/Amp.

        •  

          You can normally contact HK/AKG directly.

          Agret is right in that it's about 100 bucks but the whole point of him buying those pads was to mimic a sound signature for a similar headphone that costs about 250 more, the AKG K712s.

          So, in a way, it's what is common called a modded Q701/poor man's K712.

          The things people do eh? :D

    •  

      How would these headphones go with the Matrix Audio Mini-i Pro?.

    •  

      When you say that the STX amplifier is insufficient, does this mean that it doesn't get loud enough overall due to lack of power, or is it just the low end that is affected? I ask because I own an STX and the volume is already more than I need overall.

      •  

        There will be enough volume. The DAC on the ST/STX is very good. I couldn't tell much difference between my Arcam irDAC and the on board DAC from the ST.

        The amplifier, however, is not the best. It will do the job but it won't sound as lively and I found it to be a bit muddy compared to the Matrix M-Stage.

        Still, it'll get you through no problems. But then, this is all just one person's experience. Tycn seems to think changing to the Matrix did nothing for him.

  • +2 votes

    I have Audio Technica AD900, AD900X, M30 and Sennheiser HD800

    and I'm still thinking about buying this.. :-(

    •  

      Hehe, get a Beyer 880 as well and you'll have the trinity. :D

      •  

        Didn't like the DT880 personally. Mids are too thin for my taste.

        AD900 sounded too polite, not enough bass impact.

        AD900X is great, fixes the bass issues in the AD900.

        •  

          AD900 more comfortable headphone - I use them at work

          AD900X use them at home when I cannot be bothered to turn the headphone amp on

          HD800 when I can be bothered.

        •  

          I found the AD900 pads too itchy. My AD900X sits on my shelf neglected.

          HD 600/HD 650/Q701 combo seems to cover all my tastes. Not to mention all the other stuff I get out of impulse. OzBargain's fault, of course.

        •  

          Lol.

          I myself use a K712 along with Over-Ear Momentums for travel.
          Looking at getting a cheap 2nd hand HD600/650 but we'll see how we go there.

        •  

          When you say travel, do you mean planes, buses etc?

        •  

          Yep. They're a good compromise between isolation and sound quality for me.

        •  

          Would I be "wasting" a pair of Q701's if I don't use an amp (whether home or portable)? I mainly use my Creative Aurvana Live! in planes (hooked up to in-flight entertainment system). So it feels like >$150 headphones would be wasted on me.

        •  

          Wouldn't recommend these for travel. They're open ended so would not isolate the sound very well and the person next to you would be able to hear what you're listening to.

          Plus, they're kinda bulky. Get something more portable that are close-ended if you prefer to use during travel like the aforementioned Sennheiser Momentums or Beyerdynamic T51p.

        •  

          Thanks for the recommendations. Will have a look at them.

        •  

          Yeah man.. you JUST missed the TP51 drop from yesterday. I believe these replaced them. :(

        • +1 vote

          They pretty much don't work on a weak source

          You'd get a tinny sound and it probably would be worse than the stock airline headset

    • +4 votes

      No point getting the Q701 if you have the HD800 :P

      •  

        They have a different sound signature but the HD800s would blow these out of the water regardless. :D

      •  

        Oh it's based on pure curiosity, really - just an expensive A/B test.

    •  

      How much did you pay for the HD800?

    •  

      I feel ur pain~~I have ad900x and HD650.
      And this price is a killer for this headphone.

  • +1 vote

    Great deal Op!. Was about to purchase them the other day on Amazon for $243 delivered.

  •  

    Ahhhhhh, I don't need this.
    Used to really want a pair, but I've learned to be happy with my shure se215 buds and HD-25s

    •  

      Are you Shure…? :D

      But in all seriousness, they would have a different use to the Shures and Sennheisers.

      These would be your go to phones for listening at home as they are open-ended and not really portable. I bet they would Shurely blow the other two out of the water..

      Plus the soundstage would be much nicer too. It's just a matter of using the right headphones in the right places (or should I say Sennheisersibly?)

      P.S. Being on OzBargain is not a good way to avoid buying stuff you don't "need".

      •  

        Argh, I know all this.

        I ended my Hi-Fi obsession a few years back and chose phones that would actually last, while being good enough as far as sound goes.

        I actually ordered these because I always wanted a pair of top-tier (yes, I'd say these are at the cheap end of the top-tiers) with a real soundstage and a ton of detail.

        Worst case scenario I think I'll get my money back on the used market if well-cared for

        •  

          Good choice. You won't regret it. Just make sure you do the burn-in for these. It'll really help.

  • +1 vote

    I've got so many entry level headphones, been peeping these for a while. Time to step up.

    But what colour???

    Might be worth noting that these will take at least 2 weeks after the drop ends to arrive, possibly a month, but Massdrop seem to be getting better on this front.

    •  

      Yeah. At least they're not manufacturing them post-drop like some of their other items. :D

      Lime Green ftw!

  • +1 vote

    I'm probably not the only one, but I honestly had no clue as to what your bargain heading meant OP, however I just clicked through anyway! Now I know that they're headphones - all good!

  •  

    I noticed the number of people in the drop has gone up about 30 since I posted this. I hope it's all you guys here!

  • +1 vote

    I tried the Q701s before and thought that $199 USD is really good value in terms of sound quality these can provide!

    The OZBargainer in me wanted to wait for a deal though knowing that $199 seems to be the new everyday price anyway.

    Guess I was right! Gonna cop a pair of these babes for sure!

    Thanks mthucs!

    The question is which colour….

    •  

      Lime Green if you want to be funky.
      White if you want to match your Mac Gear.
      Black… for something more generic.

  •  

    wondering if something like this would be a good investment:
    http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Headphone-Hard-Case-for-Sennheise...

    •  

      Not sure mate.

      Personally, I'd invest in a stand instead of a case. Surely you'll want to show them off to guests. :)

      Plus, I don't use them for travel so I have no real need for a case.

  •  

    Honest question
    Has the change to Made in China affected the quality of the headphones? (had to be asked….we all know what Made in China stuff is like)…..

  • +1 vote

    For those looking for an AMP/DAC combo to pair these cans with, i just found out that this store is having a 15% off sale till the end of the month http://a1futureshop.com.au/

    Just purchased the new version of the Matrix M stage for $322.15 delivered, once they refund me 15% back http://a1futureshop.com.au/index.php?route=product/product&p...

    •  

      Good purchase mate. The new ones come with a built in DAC as well so it'll give you a bit of flexibility with laptops and such. Don't forget you can roll op-amps with these to change the sound to your flavour.

      •  

        Yep the one i bought has a USB connection for better sound quality when listening to digital audio especially FLAC files. For those that might be unaware USB DAC's don't require sound cards since all audio is routed through USB. Also purchased the LT1364 opamps since they seem to be well recommended.

  •  

    I only have mobile and laptop. Should music on this headphone will great on them ?

    • +1 vote

      Mobile. No. It won't get enough power out of them.
      Laptop. Still not really.. but you can get a little portable DAC/AMP combo device such as this:

      http://www.head-fi.org/products/fiio-e17

      The DAC will help make the music sound better than from the digital processor on your laptop and the AMP will just boost the signal so the headphones are better powered.

      However, this headphone is not really designed to be portable as it is open ended (people can hear what you're playing and vice versa) and also somewhat large.

      If at home, something like the Fiio will do nicely as a basic unit.

      Oh and you can use the Fiio to boost the signal from the mobile as well if you'd like. Assuming the mobile has a good DAC (you can't use the DAC component from the Fiio on the mobile as you need a USB port).

      •  

        Thanks mthucs . I just know what is DAC now .

        •  

          Yeah. It's a Digital to Analogue converter so essential it transforms the digital signal (music files) to an analog form (that goes to the headphones). The better the dac, the more in tune with the source the analog signal is.

      • +1 vote

        To be honest, the Fiio E17 doesn't drive these very well. I haven't tried any other portable amp/dac combos, but the E17s imho leave the sound slightly muddled and lacking the transparency that a desktop amp (O2/ODAC or Aune T1 are the ones I've tried) can bring out.

        Don't buy these if you don't have or are not planning to spend at least $200 on an amplifier (and DAC, if you need one). You'll probably get similar quality sound from buying AD700s or HD598s, which don't need to be amped.

        •  

          Yeah, I agree. I just picked the E17 at random of an example of a portable DAC/Amp combo.

          There are plenty of better choices out there.

        •  

          What's better options for portable DAC/amp? I've asked a local hifi rep he said they dont sell any portable amp as they don't work. I've just ordered Flio E18 anyway and hope it won't be too disappointing. E12 claims the most powerful portable amp on market any comments?

        •  

          Well, if you've already bought something, there really isn't much point to asking what's a better one until you find out if you like that one is there? :D

          Kinda defeats the purpose of asking a question in my eyes. :D

          Anyway, maybe try the dragonfly?

          http://www.head-fi.org/t/617241/audioquest-dragonfly-review-...

          I hear it does work with the AKGs but as I previously mentioned, it's more of a "sit down at home and listen to stuff" headphone so a lot of people tend to get a desktop amp or something less portable/more powerful.

          Cheers.

        •  

          Thanks if E18 doesn't work as expected I'll get a desktop one

  • +1 vote

    Beyerdynamic DT990 are $141.81 + delivery on Amazon
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0011UB9CQ/?smid=ATVPDKIKX0...

  •  

    These AKG Q701 VS. Audio Technica ath-m50x

    Can anyone tell me which ones are better?

    I also will be getting the JDS O2+ODAC

    •  

      Plus, audio is subjective. The one that is better is the one that sounds better to you. Even if the rest of the world hates it.

    • +2 votes

      Q701's is miles ahead in detail, accuracy, soundstage when both are driven with great amps.

      But the m50x can be driven without amps and it has stronger/punchier bass.

      Basically one is audiophile, critical listening. The other is more midrange all-rounder use.

      Edit: Also the tonal balance of the two headphones is very different. Chalk and cheese. Q701 feels more 'thin', very revealing but tonally its in my opinion not all that neutral. Personally the tonal balance is too piercing for me to listen for hours.

      m50's tonal balance is more in-line with typical headphones.

  •  

    You can't really compare these two.
    One is designed to be more portable than the other and one is open ended and the other closed.

    If you were sitting at home listening to music, I'd go the AKG.
    Travelling, Audio Technica as it is more compact and closed.

    Also, I hear the JDS pairs well with the AKGs.

    Sound wise, I prefer open ended headphones.

  •  

    Hi,

    So to drive this AKG would this be enough? (O2 JDS) Would I still need a sound card or is this sufficient by itself?

    Objective 2 from JDS at ~175AUD delivered (with AU Plug)

    http://www.jdslabs.com/products/35/objective2-headphone-ampl...

    Any technical differences between the one above and the one at MASSDROP?

    https://www.massdrop.com/buy/mayflower-dac

    ~300-250AUD delivered (also in the specs it states 120V US PS, does that mean I'll have to use a step down transformer?)

    Thanks for the help.

    • +2 votes

      The one sold at JDS is essentially the same but without a DAC and hence cheaper. The one at Massdrop includes a very good DAC within the amp. Mayflower I believe is a UK company while JDS is American. But the internal is virtually identical. I believe you can asked for 220V power supply on order.

      • +1 vote

        Nah. Unfortunately you can't on this order.

        Someone asked for a 220V in the comments and the response was:

        "Not at this time. You can substitute this buy purchasing a 220v to 110v step down converter. They are cheap and can be found in your countries amazon for $10 USD or less."

        I don't know much about transformers myself but if you want a simple plug and play, maybe get the JDS O2/ODAC Combo with the proper voltage?

        •  

          Hi,

          Thanks donkeykong and mthucs.

          I guess either the JDS O2/ODAC (~$338 AUD) vs Mayflower O2/ODAC ($329 AUD) both with AU plugs but Mayflower current have their PS out of stock.

          or

          Get the MASSDROP version sans AU Plug/PS but at ~$250 (lowest drop) I do have a step down transformer but it is rather bulky and would prefer not to use it.

          EDIT: JDS's 'limited edition' are the RCA outputs worth the extra ~$80?
          http://www.jdslabs.com/products/48/o2-odac-combo/

          Thanks again

        • +1 vote

          Schiit Modi/Magni isn't a bad combo either.

          Looks good too.

        •  

          I rather buy the DAC and O2 Amp separately. The price is very similar either way. The separate amp also has the advantage of powering with the included rechargeable 2x9V internal batteries.

          Have just purchased the O2 Amp + AU adapter for $163 US rather than waiting around from Massdrop.

        •  

          The Fiio combo should be decent too if you want something local
          http://www.noisymotel.com/product.asp?ProductID=46

        •  

          To be honest, I've always thought Fiio was an OK brand but I'd probably still prefer some of the other ones listed.

          They just look flimsy but I hear the punch above their weight range.

        • +1 vote

          I have a few Fiio amp in the past and I am very disappointed. I am shy away from them since. The O2 is the best bang per buck that you can get. It is comparable to $1000 amp.

        •  

          Matrix M-Stage is nice too. Bang for buck.

        •  

          Agree. It is better for my need to have the portability of rechargeable batteries. If you was thinking of the Matrix DAC, the ODAC is better.

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