Friday, January 18, 2013

AKG K701 + Antlion Modmic Review

It's been a little while since I've gotten the AKG K701s and I decided I'd do somewhat of a review on these headphones as well as the Antlion modmic which I've recently got last month. To start off i'll list some basic information on the headphones.

Manufacturer: AKG
Series: K701
Audio Bandwidth (Hz): 10 - 39,800
Efficiency (dB SPL/V): 105
Maximum Input Power (mW): 200
Rated Impedance (Ohms): 62
Weight: 234g /8.3 oz.
Cable (m/ft.): 3 /10 (bi-wiring, 99.99% Oxygen-free cable) 
Stereo Adapter: 6.3mm (1/4" to 1/8")
Price: $300 CAD

Why over ear headphones and specifically the K701s?  
For those who don't know, I consider myself a semi-audiophile. I prefer over the ear headphones mostly at home and sometimes outdoor but mostly earphones for outdoors. One of the main reasons I decided to pick up these was the fact that when it comes to sound, I look for high quality. Especially with the type of music I listen to, mostly being instrumentals and doujin circles, I like to be able to hear the details of each instrument.   The thing is that I did not want to spend an expensive price for earphones that end up being tugged from time to time and result in breaking fast. For over ear headphones, I started with many Sony MDR series priced around $40-80. They weren't as great but you couldn't really complain for the price you pay. So moving up a rank, I decided to do a lot more research on more costly headphones. I had heard from many brands such as Sennheiser, AKG, Audio Technica, Grado Labs, Sony, Panasonic, and so on. 

So why exactly the K701s? For the price it costs, it was not only "quality headphones" but stylish too. You have to consider the aesthetics of the headphones too since they do give you a sense of style wearing them. I mean people buy Beats by Dre which cost $300-$400 and quality doesn't really come into count here but they get them mainly for the aesthetics. As for the K701s, everything about the headphones makes it look amazing. The head band, mesh, cans, and even the color scheme gives it a classy feel. It doesn't look plain compared to most generic headphones that have a black band connecting 2 flat round cans. I also happened to bump into them looking through Shin Moeru Headphone reader, which you can see the picture below. Simple to say, I pretty much fell in love with these when I first saw them.

In terms of quality of sound, these by far have beaten everything I've previously used by a long shot. The amount of bass is perfect and these headphones do justice to pretty much any type of music. These headphones provide clear vocals as well giving a much similar to "live" performance. Although these headphones are amazing, don't expect them to make everything sound SUPER @#$%ING HD QUALITY SOUND right off the bat. You do have to take into account of things such as the type of audio format and what amplifiers it is using, the sound will differ between mp3 player, phone, computer, and such. The K701s work well on my old ghetto phone but sound is a lot quieter since thats all my phone can power it with. I normally have my K701s plugged into my PC, so it sounds just fine. I do plan in the future to invest in a $200-$300 DAC/portable amp for these, particularily looking at the new iBasso lineup.

Leather headband with AKG logo adds a original and stylish look.
Headband has support pads underneath for comfort. 
K701s comes with a gold plated stereo adapter for use with mp3s,
phones, etc.
What is an Antlion Modmic?
Modmic is basically what it sounds like it is, a modified microphone. Being the gamer I am, I usually have a headset lying around which I constantly have to switch the wires with my headphones whenever I want to skype or play steam with friends. It is a hassle at these times so I happened to find something more convenient, thus the modmic. The modmic basically is a custom microphone you can attach to any of your headphones. This is convenient for me because I own $300 headphones which can only be used for listening to music but with the modmic which costs about $35 dollars, I can still keep quality sound while being able to use a microphone. The microphone quality on the modmic is really good for the price paid and infact was better than most of my headsets. Some might prefer desk microphones or that sort, but its alot simpler for me to be able to freely move without having my voice fade or cut off. The modmic is set to headphones by having a magnetic end attached to any surface of the cans using an adhesive that can be removed easily and not messy. With the magnetic part attached, you can clip on the microphone any time or remove them to keep the headphones as is. This is a good investment for those who prefer headphones for sound and want to use a mic at the same time. Some people would prefer high quality headsets as opposed to a headphones + mic combo but most headsets don't have the luxury to be able to be used outdoors and elsewhere such as headphones.