When comparing AKG K81 DJ vs AKG K553 Pro, the Slant community recommends AKG K81 DJ for most people. In the question“What are the best headphones?” AKG K81 DJ is ranked 72nd while AKG K553 Pro is ranked 175th. The most important reason people chose AKG K81 DJ is:
Despite the compact size. the bass is full, has great impact, deep extension yet is not loose. The low end also has a natural quality to it that makes these headphones great for music that is performed using real instruments. The mids are slightly recessed, but also have a natural tone. The highs are the most recessed or rolled-off, but the detail and airiness of the music is not totally absent. This quality helps give the sound a smooth and pleasing tonality.
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Pro Full bass with adequate levels of mids and highs
Despite the compact size. the bass is full, has great impact, deep extension yet is not loose. The low end also has a natural quality to it that makes these headphones great for music that is performed using real instruments.
The mids are slightly recessed, but also have a natural tone. The highs are the most recessed or rolled-off, but the detail and airiness of the music is not totally absent. This quality helps give the sound a smooth and pleasing tonality.
Pro Ear cups can swivel facing outwards
The K81 can be used “DJ style”, wherein only one ear cup is in contact with the head. The cups have a smooth swivel action so they can be rotated to face outwards. A user can choose to hold one ear cup up to his or her ear while flipping switches or turning knobs on the mix board with the other hand.
Pro Easy to travel with
While these are already quite compact, the ear cups can be folded into the headband to reduce their size even further. This makes them easy to stuff inside a bag and travel with.
Pro Comfortable to wear even with extended use
The clamping force is not too much at all, so acceptable levels of pressure will be applied on the ears. Also, the ear pads are thick with ample pleather padding on the surface. This combination provides adequate cushioning between the ear cups and sides of the head.
Pro Can fit a wide range of head sizes
The aluminum headband itself has some good flex. Combined with the sliding mechanism of the ear cups, K81 can be adjusted to fit a wide range of head sizes. Also notable are the numbered steps on each side of the headband, which allow for accurate and consistent ear cup positioning.
Pro Feels high quality
Although it's mostly made of plastic, the materials don't feel cheap at all. Aside from feeling sturdy, the plastics have a smooth rubber coating which makes them feel premium to the touch. Also, the headband is made out of aluminum which is significantly more durable than an all plastic one.
Pro Quite comfortable to wear
The K553 Pro's earpads feature pleather materials which feel supple on the skin. Inside, the quality foam should provide ample cushioning. The headband also features a pleather surface and has some padding, which should help ease the pressure off of your head.
Pro Produces clean and accurate yet versatile sound
The sound is clear and accurate, and it should be very easy for the listener to pick out the details in the music. The bass level is just right without sounding boomy or muddy. The mids sound natural and neutral so these frequencies do not jump out of the mix. The highs are slightly extended, but do not make the sound harsh in any way.
Pro Solid build quality and premium feel
These headphones have very good build quality. Solid plastic and durable-feeling plastic is used for most of the headphones' parts. The matte finish adds a softer and more premium feel to the plastic surfaces. The headband is made of metal so it can handle some flex without breaking.
Pro Great noise isolation qualities
The closed design helps to greatly minimize sound leakage from these headphones. People near you will not hear what you are listening to when using these headphones. Also, the pleather pads allow for a great seal which further helps to minimize sound isolation and block outside noise from interfering with your listening experience.
Con On-ear design can still be uncomfortable
While the ear pads are thick and give a lot of cushioning, some may still find this to be uncomfortable. Being on-ear, some pressure is applied onto the ears.Those who are sensitive to this may still feel some discomfort, especially when worn for several hours straight.
Con Highs may sound too recessed
People who prefer their music with sparkly highs and utmost clarity likely won't find these headphones to be a good listen.
Con Lengthy cable can be a hassle
The cable is 2.5m which is fairly long. Since it is not detachable and the cable tends to tangle quite easily, it may cause some problems with regular home use or when taking these headphones on the go.
Con Earpads may be too small for some
While the ear pads are able to provide ample cushioning, they are quite thin. Large ears may come into contact with the driver housing. This can lead to some discomfort and annoyance, especially when wearing the headphones for long periods of time.
Con Long, non-detachable headphone cable
You may encounter some hassle when using these headphones due to the cable. While the length is quite good at around 3 meters, the cable can get in the way and can be quite difficult to organize. The cable is also non-detachable, so replacing it can be difficult.