What's Your Favorite Piece of Kit
Maybe it's your go-to headphones, a set of speakers, your daily driver amp, DAP, or your favorite listening chair. What's the one thing that completes your perfect listening experience and why? Show and tell.
These are the Technics EAH-T700. The journey to these becoming my favorite pair of cans was an interesting one. With most audio critics in the internet bashing its sound profile, I wasn't sure if I had spent my money wisely as I tended to agree with the criticism I read when I gave it a listen. Having now spent a few months with the headphones, I started to understand exactly what Technics was trying to do.
It has a really bizarre sound profile. It's not a perfectly flat response for reference use. The emphasis on embellished frequencies don't line up with the ideal harman response curve which is used for modern headphones as a standard metric for competence and as a major part of the marketing. Technics decided to do away with all of that, and it resulted in an unfamiliar, somewhat jarring sound profile since we've all gotten used to the harman response curve. It goes without saying that the harman response curve isn't the absolute truth when it comes to the 'perfect' sound profile, and I'm glad that someone was bold enough to part from it to try something different.
This unique difference in sound profile is what makes listening to the EAH-T700 an experience. Suddenly, I got it. I understood what they've created. it gave familiar songs surprises for me to discover. Undertones in the sub frequencies caused by natural harmonics start to appear where they weren't before; where some would argue they don't belong, but it's musical and it feels good when it happens. This occurs in the other direction as well towards the high frequencies. To say that it sparkles doesn't seem to capture exactly what it does. I feel like "shimmer" is the more appropriate descriptor for the high frequencies. It shimmers. It's in the foreground but it's gentle. Once you get over how unfamiliar everything sounds, you start to discover that it is a very musical headphone. It's got the fidelity to be analytic with a frequency response of 3Hz -100kHz, but it's not purposed for that. In the end, I really fell in love with its sound and hidden gems of feel-good that it is able to bring out in music that I've heard countless of times before.
This headphone tops my high-end DACs, my AMPs, and all other pieces of kit in my rabbit hole of audiophile equipment. Best pair of headphones I own so far. We'll see how they compare to the Final Audio D8000 once I get my hands on those :D