AKG K702 Headphones (Playback 26)

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AKG Acoustics K702
AKG K702 Headphones (Playback 26)

                                                                                                                                                         

Overview

Consider this headset if: you want headphones with an even tonal balance, just a touch of warmth in the treble and you want to avoid the edgy or harsh sound that often comes with headphones that emphasize transparency at the expense of sonic rough edges—rough edges that the AKG simply doesn’t have.

Look elsewhere if: micro-dynamic detail is at the top of your list of sonic desires, or if your musical needs demand the punchiest dynamics.

Ratings (compared to similarly-priced headphones)

  • Tonal Balance:  9
  • Clarity: 9.0
  • Dynamics: 8.5
  • Comfort/Fit: 9.5
  • Sensitivity: 7.5
  • Value: 9.5

Sonic Character

The K702 offers a sound that manages to seem almost faultless to the casual listener. This is an important achievement, and one that bespeaks smart design choices that may work well for many listeners. Like every headphone we’ve heard, the K702 has its limits, but first let’s catalog some of its superb performance attributes.

The core strength of the K702 is the artful frequency balance that AKG’s engineers have delivered. The K702 sounds very flat from about 150hz up to around 10khz, which means that instruments in a band or orchestra are consistently reproduced in proper relationship to each other. Not only that, but also most instruments sound natural on an individual basis.

Just as important, the K702 seems to roll off the upper treble very slightly. This characteristic might at first glance seem a drawback, but in practice it may in fact be a blessing in disguise. Let’s face it; a lot of music signals are a bit distorted or noisy in the treble region, so that it is not necessarily a bad thing for a headphone to de-emphasize those flaws. AKG’s choice fits well with the realities and quality limitations both of modern recordings and of some D/A converters. In short, the K702s reproduce treble problems in music or associated equipment, but without rubbing your face in them.

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