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Dalmatian's picture
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AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

I've recently bought a pair of AKG Q701 headphones to use with my ipod and iMac computer. I realised they would need a headphone amp so I bought a Fiio E7, this gave a fair sound but was still lacking in the volume department. I added a Fiio E9 to use with the E7 via USB from the iMac and the sound is very thin and overly bright and still doesn't seem to have enough power to drive the AKGs.

I'm wondering if I need a better headphone Dac/Amp I could spend up tp £250 on one to use with the iMac . I want a powerful amp to drive them properly, am I expecting too much from using the iMac as a source, are the AKGs too revealing ?

Thanks, Nick

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

The E9 is powerful enough to drive most headphones, unfortunately the sound signature you're describing is typical of the AKG cans. 

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

If you can stretch to it, this I meant to be very good. Google it for a review. 

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/YULONG-D100-ASRC-DAC-DIGITAL-ANALOG-CONVERTER-/220848377341#vi-content

 

i have no experience of it though, so can't comment from first hand experience. 

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

If you can stretch to it, this I meant to be very good. Google it for a review. 

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/YULONG-D100-ASRC-DAC-DIGITAL-ANALOG-CONVERTER-/220848377341#vi-content

 

i have no experience of it though, so can't comment from first hand experience. 

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

Dalmatian wrote:

I've recently bought a pair of AKG Q701 headphones to use with my ipod and iMac computer. I realised they would need a headphone amp so I bought a Fiio E7, this gave a fair sound but was still lacking in the volume department. I added a Fiio E9 to use with the E7 via USB from the iMac and the sound is very thin and overly bright and still doesn't seem to have enough power to drive the AKGs.

I'm wondering if I need a better headphone Dac/Amp I could spend up tp £250 on one to use with the iMac . I want a powerful amp to drive them properly, am I expecting too much from using the iMac as a source, are the AKGs too revealing ?

Thanks, Nick

You may just need an amp more suited to your cans. I recommend checking head-fi.org for suggestions on good amps to match the Q701. I've had great results with the K701 and a Benchmark DAC1, but I doubt you'd find a used DAC1 for  £250. 

 

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

Ashley wrote:

If you can stretch to it, this I meant to be very good. Google it for a review. 

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/YULONG-D100-ASRC-DAC-DIGITAL-ANALOG-CONVERTER-/220848377341#vi-content

 

i have no experience of it though, so can't comment from first hand experience. 

I don't think D100 can match nicely with Q701( I once owned a pair of K702 and Q701 but sold both of them eventually).  I owned a D100 before and found it is very clear but a bit on the bright side which will not tame the HF of Q701 and I sold it eventually and replace it by D18 and A18.  The result is a perfect match with my HD800 but I am afraid the cost is too much over your budget.

I believe Q701 will match better with tube amplifier though I don't have any experience with tube.  Someone has mentioned "little dot" is good match with Q701.

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

I disagree, amplification changes are subtle to say the least, you just need to face up that the AKG's are not for you. Save yourself a whole lot of money and find some more suitable cans which you actually like the sound of. 

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

 Recently tried the 701 on the schiit Modi & Magni (£230) and it sounded by far the most interesting that I've heard it sound so far. It actually sounded better than the Beyerdynamic DT880 there. I didn't get a great experience out of it with the Yulong D100 to be honest, still sounded a bit too thin. 

 

If the Modi & Magni still don't have enough body for you then I recommend switching the 701 for something like the Sennheiser HD600 or 650 (650 is a bit more bassy).

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

I thought the same when I bought my Q701s. I did have a pro-ject headbox ii but the negative traits of that little box were being emphasized by the phones. The Q701 have a razor flat response and need sympathetic dedicated amplication. I eventually settled on the Musical Fidelity HPA100. This amp added just enough warmth and bass presence with volume to spare, but it was relatively expensive. Use this combo with a digital dock like a Pure I20 connected to your Ipod and you should get great results. The budget for this though will be around £420, well outside the £250 you quoted. Believe me the Q701s are worth persevering with, they sound fabulous with the HPA-100, but it's expensive to get the best out of them. Your best advice may be to sell them and purchase another pair that is closer to the sound you need. The B&W P3 and P5 are warmer and less open, might be a better match for the Filo gear. 

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

I bought a Nuforce udh 100 Dac /Headphone amp, I'm using my iMac (running Audirvana software) as a source and I'm absolutely blown away by it.

Tha AKG Q701s are fantastic, they just need a good Dac/Amp to drive  them.

Nick

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

:roll:

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

What is the smiley supposed to represent ?

Nick

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

Dalmatian wrote:

What is the smiley supposed to represent ?

Nick

I think the 'rolls eyes' is for an earlier comment that a headphone amp won't change the fundamental characteristics of the AKGs.........

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

Dalmatian wrote:

I'm wondering if I need a better headphone Dac/Amp I could spend up tp £250 on one to use with the iMac .

As mentioned above, you may want to listen to different headphones first to see what else is out there. Below is a roundup of a few popular models that can help you draw up an audition list.

http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/jan10/articles/studioheadphones.htm

 

For DAC/Amp options within your budget, both the following have higher power output, lower output impedance, lower crosstalk and better channel balance than the FiiO E9.

EHP-O2D: http://epiphany-acoustics.co.uk/products-page/dacs/ehp-o2d-miniature-desktop-headphone-amplifier-with-usb-dac/

Monitor I: http://www.njc-audio.co.uk/html/monitor1.html

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RE: AKG Q701 Headphone Dac/Amp

Thanks for the replys, I have bought a Nuforce UDH100 Dac/Amp and am very pleased with it.

 

Nick

 

 

AL13N wrote:

Dalmatian wrote:

I'm wondering if I need a better headphone Dac/Amp I could spend up tp £250 on one to use with the iMac .

 

As mentioned above, you may want to listen to different headphones first to see what else is out there. Below is a roundup of a few popular models that can help you draw up an audition list.

http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/jan10/articles/studioheadphones.htm

 

For DAC/Amp options within your budget, both the following have higher power output, lower output impedance, lower crosstalk and better channel balance than the FiiO E9.

EHP-O2D: http://epiphany-acoustics.co.uk/products-page/dacs/ehp-o2d-miniature-desktop-headphone-amplifier-with-usb-dac/

Monitor I: http://www.njc-audio.co.uk/html/monitor1.html

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