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Wmcmanus

AKG K3003 (stupid review, but it makes you wonder)

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Makes you wonder if they're really worth a shit...

Or if perhaps they're the IEM equivalent of the latest and greatest overpriced Ultrasones... and that some numbskull who doesn't know crap about headphones (IEMs in this case) simply chose to rave on like mad about them because he figures high price = great sound.

http://www.avguide.com/blog/the-best-earphones-youll-hearone-day?utm_campaign=Weekly+Email&utm_medium=email&utm_source=email-270&utm_content=Surround+Speakers+from+MartinLogan,+Paradigm,+and+Wharfedale+

Any "review" that makes absolutely no reference to any other comparative products is pretty useless. It just demonstrates the reviewer's lack of experience/understanding, etc. Yet, who knows. Maybe AKG is on to something here. Seems like they're trying to catch up with the likes of JH Audio, realizing that there is a market for this kind of thing. Big money for non-custom IEMs though...

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Well, marketing headphones as luxury jewelry is pretty convenient- saves them from objective arguments about sound quality. Then again I had pretty high hopes for AKG, they are German after all.

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Seriously? 1.4-1.5K for universals?

My reaction as well. But it's a reputable company, so that's why I'm wondering if this is a serious attempt to enter the high end IEM market, or more or an Ultrasone move whereby you stick a big price on some bling'ed up looking thing and then hope you'll find a lot of fools who think it must be "the best" because it's the most expensive?

Edited by Wmcmanus

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Well if they are successful in selling these things I am sure Dr. Dre, Ludicris, and Quincy Jones wont be far behind.

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Then again I had pretty high hopes for AKG, they are German after all.

Actually, they are Austrian. Does that make a difference to your hopes? laugh.png

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Give up any hopes, they belong to the Harman Group, so marketing and sales are way more important than absolute (even relative) sound quality.

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Well if they are successful in selling these things I am sure Dr. Dre, Ludicris, and Quincy Jones wont be far behind.

I guess we'll need to hear them, but I suspect that you're right.

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These have to be joke right? IEMs are notorious for costing no more than a couple bucks to make. I'm not quite sure how 'hand made' is relevant here....some guy just sets the balanced armature inside the encosure and solders the cheap headphone cable to it wink.png The most expensive part of these earphones are most likely the stupid leather case.

Stuff like this really irks me...it's disgusting how much like high end speaker audio this headphone/iem market is starting to get. I can already see the next fad in headphone re-cables a few years from now. Interconnect network boxes!!

Oracle_V1.3_Inte_4a6e0732a381f.jpg

Edited by monsieurguzel

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What do these boxes do? Looks like some kind of resistors for impedance or something. Well, if you jam more of them on a cable you can actually save on cable stands!

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The MIT interconnects I've opened have a 100K resistor between the signal and ground, nothing more.

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^ Well there's the box... that is where all the majik happens... the resistor is just there to damp majik overshoot

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Has anyone here had the opportunity to hear these as yet?

Ever since I had to give up on the idea of customs and sell my 13Pro's I've longed for a higher end universal option. When I first saw these I initially wrote them off because of the price but lately I've become somewhat disenchanted with the LCD-2's and there's not many other full-sized phones that I have much interest in so if the K3003's really can compete with the better customs they could prove to be tempting. Impressions and reviews I've read certainly suggest they may perform at that level but I'm not familiar with most of the people who've wrote about them so it's hard to judge.

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I heard them at CES and they sounded harsh. Problem is, that's my go-to impression, so I'm really not sure. Didn't like them though.

Got my JH13s a month or so ago ... I have no idea why anyone would opt for the 3003 when nirvana is just a smidge more.

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I heard them at CES and they sounded harsh. Problem is, that's my go-to impression, so I'm really not sure. Didn't like them though.

Got my JH13s a month or so ago ... I have no idea why anyone would opt for the 3003 when nirvana is just a smidge more.

Well in my case I don't really have much choice but to look to the universal market, I've been down the custom road with the 13Pro's and I'd absolutely agree with you, when I was able to get them dialed in they were phenomenal. Unfortunately though, with the problems I've been having with my left ear and the fit issues that six months of refits couldn't solve I had to give up on the 13Pro's and the idea of customs.

To be honest, I don't hold out much hope that I'm going to find a universal in the league of the 13Pro's but I figure there's quite a bit of innovation going into IEM's so it's worth keeping an eye out just in case. I'd love to see a universal 13Pro from JH Audio, maybe something similar in design to the pair they sound around for auditions but with a little more ergonomic, user friendly design that could accomodate Comply tips.

Edited by elnero

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I see where you coming from, same thing here undecided.gif A universal JH13 would be geat but I doubt it would be possible to get the same performance in the near future.

Edited by Spychedelic Whale

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The K3003 has some serious problems. Peaky upper-mids and lower treble. Severe integration issues where the bass doesn't keep up with the treble. (Think ML Aerius.) Still probably one of the better universals from what I understand.

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Have you (or anyone else here) tried the Audéo PFE 232 universals?...

Yeah, they're a bit "fast" sounding, but not harsh. Not quite my cup of tea, but I thoroughly enjoyed them off my iPod walking to town one day. I'm gonna give them some ear time on my trip to NY.

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I see where you coming from, same thing here undecided.gif A universal JH13 would be geat but I doubt it would be possible to get the same performance in the near future.

You may be right, all things being equal I'd expect the custom to be better but I also think with some effort put into the universal design they could likely get pretty darn close. I base this on having heard the JH13Pro demos which are not the greatest ergonomically for a good fit and the tips they use are atrocious, but still, they sounded better than any universal I'd ever heard. If Jerry could pull off something along the line of what FitEar is doing with their TOGO's which would allow for more tip choices I'm betting the universals would be pretty darn good. Considering the problems I have with customs I'd be more than willing to pay close to or possibly even as much for the universal's even knowing they wouldn't be quite as good.

Have you (or anyone else here) tried the Audéo PFE 232 universals?...

I haven't heard them, in fact I don't know much about them at all.

The K3003 has some serious problems. Peaky upper-mids and lower treble. Severe integration issues where the bass doesn't keep up with the treble. (Think ML Aerius.) Still probably one of the better universals from what I understand.

I suspected this might be the case, the frequency response graph doesn't look that promising, some weird dips and spikes in the treble region. That's typically only part of the story though, I've certainly liked some phones that don't measure all that great.

This is probably a wild goose chase, I've just been feeling a bit frustrated, it seems like all the phones I could happily live with have some sort of deal breaking issue. There's a lot I really love about my LCD-2's but both the V.1 and V.2's that I've owned have had a weirdness with the stage/imaging that I find distracting. Initially I thought my V.1's might be faulty but the V.2's displayed a similar characteristic, albeit to a lesser degree, so I figured it was me and I would just try to get used to it.

I've had a HD650 and RS-1 on loan for about a week which has highlighted just how distracting I find the stage/imaging issues I have with the LCD-2's. To add to my frustration I had forgotten how much of a soft spot I have for the RS-1's. In my current setup this pair sounds wonderful except that I forgot, one of the reasons I sold them was they aggravate what is normally a slight, almost unnoticeable amount of tinnitus in my left ear .

There's not much else I have much interest in, my preference would be for an IEM but obviously the high-end doesn't look like it's an option. Based on what I've read I don't think the HD800 or T1 would be up my alley and I think to get into a Stax setup at the level I'd want would be too expensive. Other than the K3003's the only things that are remotely on my radar at this point are the FitEar TOGO! 334's which I think are out of my price range and I'm not sure that they sound like what I'd be looking for anyway. Then there's the Audio Technica ATH-W3000ANV, I've only started looking into these, they sound intriguing but I'm concerned that they would lack bass weight.

Edited by elnero

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