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*NEW* AKG K702 has been measured by Oratory!

Jimmy

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By cuppy/wonky I mean a bit more nasal sounding and with reduced soundstage vs stock, the EQ that works fine on your pair seems to make mine worse, so it seems that unit to unit variation can be pretty large.

I you like the HD600 minus the soundstage, and are willing to spend quite a bit more (clearly entering diminishing returns territory), the HD800S is the answer (when EQed). All things stock, for me the HD600 sounds more correct than the HD800S, and certainly have a higher performance/price ratio.

Anyway the K702 are by no means bad headphones, I can understand why some people may prefer them to, for example the HD600, but for me they present two main problems, they are less natural sounding than the Sennheisers, much less at stock, it can be partially corrected by EQing them, and less comfortable (for me at least, mainly at the top of the head, and my unit doesn't have bumps in the headband).

What's cuppy? There does seem to be a fair bit of variation based on my 2 units measured, so you might be right that your K702 is a way off from my 2 units, you could always send it to Oratory I guess.

I've never been able to make the HD600 sound spacious or wide, even with an optimised frequency response that I identified as enhancing spatial qualities of headphones for myself.....even with Soundblaster Virtual Surround Sound 7.1 the HD600 doesn't present a very good 3D sound scene in gaming, so I find it surprising you say you can improve the soundstage of the HD600. I think the only way to improve the soundstage of the HD600 would be to use in-ear mics and go through the Impulcifier project or Smyth Realiser. Most people find the HD600 series to be narrow in soundstage so I'm not alone in that experience.
 
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Robbo99999

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By cuppy/wonky I mean a bit more nasal sounding and with reduced soundstage vs stock, the EQ that works fine on your pair seems to make mine worse, so it seems that unit to unit variation can be pretty large.

I you like the HD600 minus the soundstage, and are willing to spend quite a bit more (clearly entering diminishing returns territory), the HD800S is the answer (when EQed). All things stock, for me the HD600 sounds more correct than the HD800S, and certainly have a higher performance/price ratio.

Anyway the K702 are by no means bad headphones, I can understand why some people may prefer them to, for example the HD600, but for me they present two main problems, they are less natural sounding than the Sennheisers, much less at stock, it can be partially corrected by EQing them, and less comfortable (for me at least, mainly at the top of the head, and my unit doesn't have bumps in the headband).
Strange re your K702, but ok then. Yes, the HD800s would be the next headphone I would buy if I was gonna buy one....but my K702 is so unique in that aspect to my other headphones & satisfying that I don't feel the need to shell out £1400 for it. And yep, you wouldn't want to use the HD800s without EQ, whereas you can with the HD600.

(K702 can be totally corrected with EQ, to my ears/experience, and according to the measurements)
 

parnarules

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I have encountered many user reviews warning potential buyers about the poor quality control on the solder joints of the Chinese version k702s and warning them not to buy them if not confident with soldering. There are YouTube videos, Reddit posts...addressing this. Do the k612s also share this same issue? Is it better to stay away if I haven't soldered anything in my life and do not have the necessary equipment? Not interested in buying new, only second-hand.
 
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Robbo99999

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I have encountered many user reviews warning potential buyers about the poor quality control on the solder joints of the Chinese version k702s and warning them not to buy them if not confident with soldering. There are YouTube videos, Reddit posts...addressing this. Do the k612s also share this same issue? Is it better to stay away if I haven't soldered anything in my life and do not have the necessary equipment? Not interested in buying new, only second-hand.
Yes, that's true, there's a weakness with the factory soldering job for the wires in the earcups. So far I've soldered all of the wires in my right earcup and replaced the wire in the process, because it wasn't long enough after resoldering it previously. None of my soldering has failed though and that soldering of mine is around 3.5 yrs old, the factory solder failed after around 2 yrs. It's quite a fiddly job trying to keep the wire attached to the post whilst you solder it to the contact post within the quite small confines of the plastic earcup. I hadn't ever soldered before, but I bought a solder iron for £16 that contained the solder & everything you'd need, I then watched a few Youtube vids on how to solder and practiced on some seperate wire before tackling my K702, I also watched a vid on how to dissemble the earcup of the K702. The dissembling of the earcup is very simple & easy, but the soldering is a bit more tricky, but if you have pretty good eyesight, a steady hand and some determination as well as a bit of a practical streak then you should be able to do it. The K612 looks like exactly the same design as the K702, so I'm assuming it has the same weaknesses.
 
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Robbo99999

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I promised yesterday that I would write a post showing how I did Channel Matching EQ for my K702 that Oratory measured, unfortunately this is only something you can do if you actually get your headphone measured and end up with a representative seperate frequency response for both left & right drivers. But you may find this of interest, and it's something you can actually do if you get your headphone measured, as well as giving you ideas on how generally you can manipulate your own EQ's for your headphones. Following is a description of the channel matching EQ process for my first (older) K702 unit I sent to Oratory, I haven't received back my newer second unit back from Oratory yet.

Channel Matching EQ Creation
I worked out a two step process to achieve this. Step 1 is to determine an average curve that describes both the right & left drivers and to create an EQ for each driver that EQ's that driver to that average thereby you are matching both drivers to the average between them (both drivers will therefore be the same frequency response). Step 2 is to create an EQ that EQ's the determined average to the Harman Curve. You then activate the 3 EQ sets in EqualiserAPO: so you activate Left Channel Matching EQ for left channel, activate Right Channel Matching EQ for right channel, and then activate "Average to the Harman Curve EQ" (created in Step 2) for both channels. Following is a detailed breakdown of the processes I've described.

Step 1:
Oratory provided representative frequency responses of both my left & right drivers:
View attachment 136453
I traced those two frequency responses using the SPL Trace function in VirtuixCAD, thereby turning that graph into text table data format that was importable into REW. I imported those frequency responses into REW and then used REW to quickly workout an average of the two responses, easy just click a button to get REW to draw the average curve:
View attachment 136455
After setting that average of the two drivers as the Target Curve in REW I then EQ'd each of the drivers to that average:
View attachment 136457
View attachment 136458

Step 2:
EQ'ing the previously determined average curve of the two drivers to the Harman Curve, again using REW:
View attachment 136459

Yep, now Step 1 & 2 are complete you then activate all of those 3 EQ's together in EqualiserAPO, left & right channel matching EQ (one applied to each driver from Step1), and then the EQ from Step 2 which is applied to both drivers. You can now flip channel matching on & off in Equaliser APO whilst still retaining the Harman EQ from Step 2 - thereby you can see the effect of channel matching at a flip of a switch:
View attachment 136461
View attachment 136462

I did these actual EQ's months ago, but here are my listening impressions of the benefits of exact channel matching. I noticed that channel matching increased clarity/intelligibility of vocals (understanding words that I previously couldn't determine on some difficult to understand tracks) as well as noticing subtle reverb on vocals & instrument, as well as noticing some quick panning effects, also seemed to enhance soundstage some more. So those are effects of the channel matching (and praps also combined with the fact that it's an EQ specific to a particular unit that's been measured, so unit to unit variation removed from the equation).

I show all I've done here because I like to show what I've done, but I like to convey the things I've experienced & learned, and some of this may be of benefit or interest to you. It's not like you can use my channel matching EQ because it's specific to the driver balance in my own headphone unit, so it will be different to yours......but you could do something similar if you get your headphone measured, or you may just be interested, or it may make you consider using REW to tweak your own headphones or enhance your understanding of how EQ works on the filter level.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
As a side note I did the same thing for my newer K702 that Oratory also measured, he's measured two of my K702's. Here's just screenshots showing the EQ's for this particular unit, which was done using the same process as described above.
View attachment 136463 View attachment 136464 View attachment 136465 View attachment 136466
I'm not quite as happy with the EQ's for this particular unit as the final EQ of the average curve to the Harman Target was more troublesome & I don't feel I've done the final EQ as elegantly as I did for my first sample of K702. I had to use sharper filters & more of them....I haven't received this particular unit back from Oratory yet so haven't had a chance to listen to these ones yet......I may redo/revisit these particular EQ's once I get my headphone back & listen to them.
Replying to my own post here, but I did some further testing of my Channel Matching EQ. I thought it would be interesting if I could tell blind when Channel Matching EQ was activated or not. I managed to find a way to test myself, literally all I needed to do was mouse click many many times with my eyes closed on the toggle on/off button for the Channel Matching EQ whilst I was listening to music, and then when I stopped clicking I wouldn't know whether the Channel Matching was activated or not.....I'd then listen shortly to the music and then click the toggle on/off button again and listen some more to get an impression, then decide whether or not Channel Matching EQ was activated or not.....then open my eyes and see if I had correctly identified if Channel Matching was active or not. I did this 10 times and guessed right each time.....I found that the Channel Matching EQ subtly shifted the overall left/right balance of the music whilst also "bringing it more into focus" (increased clarity). So I'm very confident that my Channel Matching has significant & identifiable effects, and in a positive direction. This also makes me conclude that channel matching is an important criteria to eek out the last bit of quality from any given headphone model - in terms of overall clarity & better balancing of the image. Could be a useful attribute to take note of in headphone reviews, and is also worth doing a channel matching EQ if you've had your headphone measured (by Oratory).
 

markanini

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I have encountered many user reviews warning potential buyers about the poor quality control on the solder joints of the Chinese version k702s and warning them not to buy them if not confident with soldering. There are YouTube videos, Reddit posts...addressing this. Do the k612s also share this same issue? Is it better to stay away if I haven't soldered anything in my life and do not have the necessary equipment? Not interested in buying new, only second-hand.
Yes, it happened to me on my K612. Buy new only so you're covered by warranty.
 

Jimbob54

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Replying to my own post here, but I did some further testing of my Channel Matching EQ. I thought it would be interesting if I could tell blind when Channel Matching EQ was activated or not. I managed to find a way to test myself, literally all I needed to do was mouse click many many times with my eyes closed on the toggle on/off button for the Channel Matching EQ whilst I was listening to music, and then when I stopped clicking I wouldn't know whether the Channel Matching was activated or not.....I'd then listen shortly to the music and then click the toggle on/off button again and listen some more to get an impression, then decide whether or not Channel Matching EQ was activated or not.....then open my eyes and see if I had correctly identified if Channel Matching was active or not. I did this 10 times and guessed right each time.....I found that the Channel Matching EQ subtly shifted the overall left/right balance of the music whilst also "bringing it more into focus" (increased clarity). So I'm very confident that my Channel Matching has significant & identifiable effects, and in a positive direction. This also makes me conclude that channel matching is an important criteria to eek out the last bit of quality from any given headphone model - in terms of overall clarity & better balancing of the image. Could be a useful attribute to take note of in headphone reviews, and is also worth doing a channel matching EQ if you've had your headphone measured (by Oratory).
The last sentence is key. You can't do it with anything less. Well, I suppose another measuring rig will give you an idea of a channel imbalance. I know my hearing is off in the right ear so always add an overall shift to the right by a dB or 2 to compensate and it does make a difference.
 
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Robbo99999

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The last sentence is key. You can't do it with anything less. Well, I suppose another measuring rig will give you an idea of a channel imbalance. I know my hearing is off in the right ear so always add an overall shift to the right by a dB or 2 to compensate and it does make a difference.
Yeah, the good thing about Oratory's measurements re channel matching is that he does multiple measurements and tries to isolate the effect of the actual driver rather than poor seals for example, so I think he gets a high resolution on the actual differences between left & right drivers....which I think is key in being able to do a left/right channel matching EQ, so it's not quite as simple as just doing one measurement in a somewhat slapdash manner. But I think my experiment shows that positive attributes such as correct left/right imaging and overall clarity can be positively influenced by closely matching drivers - so that could be an attribute to look out for in Amir's reviews (& any other headphone reviews).

EDIT: I'm not sure you should compensate for your slight hearing differences between ears by compensating in your headphones - afterall when you're walking around living life you're used to the imbalance (& your brain compensates & learns the new normal), therefore it might give you slightly worse overall results if you try to compensate in the headphones. If you had hearing aid style hearing loss (& used a hearing aid) then I think such a difference should be compensated for in headphones though.
 
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Jimbob54

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Yeah, the good thing about Oratory's measurements re channel matching is that he does multiple measurements and tries to isolate the effect of the actual driver rather than poor seals for example, so I think he gets a high resolution on the actual differences between left & right drivers....which I think is key in being able to do a left/right channel matching EQ, so it's not quite as simple as just doing one measurement in a somewhat slapdash manner. But I think my experiment shows that positive attributes such as correct left/right imaging and overall clarity can be positively influenced by closely matching drivers - so that could be an attribute to look out for in Amir's reviews (& any other headphone reviews).

EDIT: I'm not sure you should compensate for your slight hearing differences between ears by compensating in your headphones - afterall when you're walking around living life you're used to the imbalance (& your brain compensates & learns the new normal), therefore it might give you slightly worse overall results if you try to compensate in the headphones. If you had hearing aid style hearing loss (& used a hearing aid) then I think such a difference should be compensated for in headphones though.

I have to adjust or else everything is bias towards the left in the stereo image. Once you notice you cant un-notice it. All the vocals etc aren't centred, they are slightly left. In every headphone. Its no different to adjusting the balance on an amp or active speakers if your room or sitting position gives an off centre image. And I adjust by around 1.5 dB.

It may even be psychosomatic so I'll even do a test like yours with the blind rapid toggling of the bias on/off and see if I can regularly tell.
 
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Robbo99999

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I have to adjust or else everything is bias towards the left in the stereo image. Once you notice you cant un-notice it. All the vocals etc aren't centred, they are slightly left. In every headphone. Its no different to adjusting the balance on an amp or active speakers if your room or sitting position gives an off centre image. And I adjust by around 1.5 dB.

It may even be psychosomatic so I'll even do a test like yours with the blind rapid toggling of the bias on/off and see if I can regularly tell.
Ah, you're not really understanding what I'm trying to explain. Your body/mind when you live your life in the real world walking around avoiding cars & dangerous animals by use of your hearing, lol.....when you do that you can instantly tell where a sound is coming from - be it behind you or in any kind of 360 degree arc around you....you can instantly identify the sound location - your eyes will flip to it instantly. Now your ears/body/mind do all of this whilst you have your slight hearing deficiency in your right ear - this is spatial location that you're doing, and you can do that perfectly whilst still having a hearing deficiency in your right ear - the brain can do this because it learns the new normal (your hearing imbalance). Now, if you then decide to adjust your headphones to output more into your right ear to compensate for your hearing deficit in that ear then you're upsetting the normal spatial awareness that your mind has learned from you walking around living your life. Your mind is already compensating for slight hearing loss in your right ear in terms of spatial location, so if you compensate for that in headphones then you're going against what your brain has learned in your normal life, therefore the spatial imaging won't be as accurate in your headphones if you compensate for your slight hearing loss in your right ear. I discussed this with Oratory when I was talking to him about Channel Matching EQ, and he agreed that you wouldn't compensate for mild hearing imbalance for those reasons I've outlined to you here (I don't hear quite as well in my right ear for instance). So the best thing to do is to make sure the actual drivers are well matched in your headphone (or in general for your chosen headphone model), ie when measured on a rig.

EDIT: the channel matching EQ I did was more than just matching the overall measured dB it was also matching the frequency response pretty much identically between the two drivers from 20-10,000Hz.
 
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xavx

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Wanted to thank you @Robbo99999 for having the K702 measured. Had a K271 (comfortable closed over ear and great after EQ) and was looking for an open over ear ~100€. Tried the Philips X2HR (great overall but too much clamp force and piercing sibilance even after EQ), Sennheiser HD599 (light and good comfort but flat sounding and missing few high frequencies even after EQ) and K702 after reading your post (not best comfort but such a great soundstage and detailed sound after EQ). Kept the K702 and sent the 2 others back.
Could you tell what the HD560s bring that the K702 don't ? Do the HD560s justify ~150€ when having the K702 already in your view ?
Tip for the K702 users having comfort issues : slide the headphone from the back of your head to the front until the earpads touch your jaws.
 
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Robbo99999

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Wanted to thank you @Robbo99999 for having the K702 measured. Had a K271 (comfortable closed over ear and great after EQ) and was looking for an open over ear ~100€. Tried the Philips X2HR (great overall but too much clamp force and piercing sibilance even after EQ), Sennheiser HD599 (light and good comfort but flat sounding and missing few high frequencies even after EQ) and K702 after reading your post (not best comfort but such a great soundstage and detailed sound after EQ). Kept the K702 and sent the 2 others back.
Could you tell what the HD560s bring that the K702 don't ? Do the HD560s justify ~150€ when having the K702 already in your view ?
Tip for the K702 users having comfort issues : slide the headphone from the back of your head to the front until the earpads touch your jaws.
Hi, well welcome to the forums too, as a new poster! Ah yes, the HD560s, I bought that this Summer and haven't written about it in this thread, but have in some other threads - my Harman EQ'd K702 and likewises EQ'd HD560s are my joint favourite headphones. I've actually sent off my HD560s to Oratory at the moment so he can add another unit to his measurement - to get it more representative and also so I can get my own personalised measurements of my unit for EQ purposes......yes so I can't do any comparitive listening testing now between HD560s and K702 but I have done in the past, but the points of difference I remember between the two headphones are as follows when both are EQ'd to the Harman Curve. HD560s and K702 have great soundstage but the HD560s is narrower than the K702 but potentially more accurately positionally defined re soundstage. HD560s has better clarity/definition in the bass than K702. K702 provides perhaps a few more detailed nuances in the music around female vocals than the HD560s. HD560s seems more accurate for me in the treble than the K702 when compared to my JBL 308p anechoically flat EQ'd speakers. HD560s seems less position sensitive on my head, seems to provide a more reliable experience so less care needed when trying to place headphone in right position.....having said that the K702 is not overly fussy and is no problem in that respect, just that the HD560s seems more resilient to different headphone positions on my head. HD560 & K702 are both about as good as each other for gaming and indeed clear favourites of mine for gaming for accurately & quickly identifying enemy spatial positions in relation to myself, which I think is largely down to their good (perhaps excellent) soundstage abilities, as these headphones are the best soundstage headphones of all the ones I own, which are in my sig at the bottom. HD560s doesn't have the reliability issues of the K702 in terms of solder failure of the wires in the earcups. So I'm pleased to own both the K702 & the HD560s, there is a possibility that the HD560s will be even better once I have personalised measurements of my particular unit of HD560s. Ah, one last point, it's possible the HD560s has better channel matching and less unit to unit variation than the K702 which are quite relevant when basing EQ's off measurements that aren't from your own units that have been measured, but I won't know how that will look until I get my HD560s off Oratory once he's measured it. Both headphones are worth their money, and in my experience/opinion the best value headphones you can get.
 
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xavx

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Hi, well welcome to the forums too, as a new poster! Ah yes, the HD560s, I bought that this Summer and haven't written about it in this thread, but have in some other threads - my Harman EQ'd K702 and likewises EQ'd HD560s are my joint favourite headphones. I've actually sent off my HD560s to Oratory at the moment so he can add another unit to his measurement - to get it more representative and also so I can get my own personalised measurements of my unit for EQ purposes......yes so I can't do any comparitive listening testing now between HD560s and K702 but I have done in the past, but the points of difference I remember between the two headphones are as follows when both are EQ'd to the Harman Curve. HD560s and K702 have great soundstage but the HD560s is narrower than the K702 but potentially more accurately positionally defined re soundstage. HD560s has better clarity/definition in the bass than K702. K702 provides perhaps a few more detailed nuances in the music around female vocals than the HD560s. HD560s seems more accurate for me in the treble than the K702 when compared to my JBL 308p anechoically flat EQ'd speakers. HD560s seems less position sensitive on my head, seems to provide a more reliable experience so less care needed when trying to place headphone in right position.....having said that the K702 is not overly fussy and is no problem in that respect, just that the HD560s seems more resilient to different headphone positions on my head. HD560 & K702 are both about as good as each other for gaming and indeed clear favourites of mine for gaming for accurately & quickly identifying enemy spatial positions in relation to myself, which I think is largely down to their good (perhaps excellent) soundstage abilities, as these headphones are the best soundstage headphones of all the ones I own, which are in my sig at the bottom. HD560s doesn't have the reliability issues of the K702 in terms of solder failure of the wires in the earcups. So I'm pleased to own both the K702 & the HD560s, there is a possibility that the HD560s will be even better once I have personalised measurements of my particular unit of HD560s. Ah, one last point, it's possible the HD560s has better channel matching and less unit to unit variation than the K702 which are quite relevant when basing EQ's off measurements that aren't from your own units that have been measured, but I won't know how that will look until I get my HD560s off Oratory once he's measured it. Both headphones are worth their money, and in my experience/opinion the best value headphones you can get.
Appreciate your response :) Interesting to read the HD560s seem equal if not be better overall than the K702 in your ears. Your past comment was essentially stating narrower soundstage but more precise than K702. I'll definitely be interested in your opinion after Oratory EQ and might give it an Amazon shot. That said, I'm mostly interested in headphones delivering unique experiences. I'll take it further on the recommendation thread in due time.
 
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Robbo99999

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Appreciate your response :) Interesting to read the HD560s seem equal if not be better overall than the K702 in your ears. Your past comment was essentially stating narrower soundstage but more precise than K702. I'll definitely be interested in your opinion after Oratory EQ and might give it an Amazon shot. That said, I'm mostly interested in headphones delivering unique experiences. I'll take it further on the recommendation thread in due time.
I think the HD560s is a safer buy than the K702 because of the solder reliability issues of the K702, and also because it'll probably show somewhat better channel matching & unit to unit variation than the K702 - but disregarding that which are not concerns for me because I have channel matching EQ & unit specific EQ then I think both headphones are equal favourites for me. The wide soundstage of the K702 is more easily immediately immersive when listening to music than the HD560s, but could be that the soundstage of the HD560s is a little more positionally accurate in relation to gaming (& music listening) even though it's narrower in presentation. HD560s has the more definition within the bass, but the K702 seems to have a bit more nuance/detail around female vocals. So for me these different positives of each headphone balance each other out in terms of preference, so they're equal for me. People coming to it fresh to make a decision between HD560s & K702 would need to weigh up qualities like if width of soundstage (wide) is a top required parameter in a headphone, in which case you'd choose the K702 as long as you weigh up the negatives of the risk of solder failure and the likely worse channel matching & unit to unit variation. But for people where they don't specifically want a super wide soundstage headphone then I'd say the HD560s is the better buy due to it's other positives. So those last two points in those last 2 sentences are really how you'd decide to choose between buying the K702 or the HD560s. K702 is more unique than HD560s, to borrow your words in your post.
 
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Chagall

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Reading this thread, reliability aside - K702 is quite value.
So just K702 has angled drivers/wide soundstage? What about K712 pro?
 

Jimbob54

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Reading this thread, reliability aside - K702 is quite value.
So just K702 has angled drivers/wide soundstage? What about K712 pro?
Angled pads
 
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Robbo99999

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Reading this thread, reliability aside - K702 is quite value.
So just K702 has angled drivers/wide soundstage? What about K712 pro?
Angled pads
I don't think K712 pro pads are angled, they're flat. https://www.head-fi.org/showcase/akg-k712-pro.16244/reviews
They look flat in the pic and two of the users there said their K712 pads are flat. Most of the pics of K712 seem like flat pads, can't really find many links commenting whether angled or flat, but found one stating flat. @solderdude measured one, so I don't know if he can remember if they were flat or angled, it didn't seem to mention in his review.
 

Jimbob54

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I don't think K712 pro pads are angled, they're flat. https://www.head-fi.org/showcase/akg-k712-pro.16244/reviews
They look flat in the pic and two of the users there said their K712 pads are flat. Most of the pics of K712 seem like flat pads, can't really find many links commenting whether angled or flat, but found one stating flat. @solderdude measured one, so I don't know if he can remember if they were flat or angled, it didn't seem to mention in his review.
No, the 702 has angled pads, not drivers. No?

I have no idea about the 712.
 

Chagall

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Thanks for the info @Robbo99999 and @Jimbob54.
I'm looking for a headphone with a wider soundstage then HD600.
HD800s would be better, but don't want to spend that amount of money, so K702 will do nicely.

Regarding pads, I see that K702, K702 Anniversary, K701, Q701, K601, K712 Pro und 612 Pro all can use the same valour pads or gel pads.
Valour pads definitely seem to be angled, but gel pads not so much.
 

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the gel pads from the 712 are definitely flat, not angled
 
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