AKG’s bumper crop of in-ear, on-ear, wireless and noise-cancelling headphones can be overwhelming for first-time browsers and buyers. A number of them are acoustically very impressive – but which is the right pair for you?
Here are the best AKG headphones that deliver superb sound performance with professional-grade quality sound.
These headphones are designed with comfortable ear paddings for long listening sessions and can really bring out the details in the music with high-quality acoustic drivers.
To help you get straight to the good stuff, we’ve tested a number of AKG headphones and listed our top picks below. Each one comes highly recommended – you just need to decide which is best for you.
What makes AKG headphones different?
AKG has a long history in the audio equipment market. Although their first foray was into electronics related to cinema like loudspeakers, projectors etc., they found real fame with microphones.
Although it has over 65 years of legacy in headphones, AKG has remained specialized in studio and reference headphones that can satisfy even the staunchest purists and the most lenient audiophile.
Only recently have they dabbled in low-budget headphones with features like noise cancellation and the like. Here’s what sets the AKG headphones apart from the competing brands:
- Audio: One thing that you can always count on AKG for is neutral and smooth audio. They have a very justified obsession for neutral sound that can be used straight for studio monitoring. For the discerning audiophiles, this is a sought-after quality in their music.
- Open sound: The AKG headphones are usually open back headphones. And this helps lend that sense of space into their audio that closed-back headphones can rarely reproduce.
- Design: One design decision that we see time and again in the AKG headphones is a suspension-type headband. This has a thin layer of fabric headband constrained by metal bands that hold the ear piece.
- Durability: Even with their low-budget headphones, we have never had a durability issue. AKG maintains their build quality throughout their lineup, from their priciest gear to the value headphones.
- Convenience: Since most of the AKG headphones are open-back, they are not suitable for use in the public.
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5 Best AKG Headphones for 2021:
|AKG Y50||7.2 x 2.87 x 8.66 in||8.1 ounces|
|AKG ProAudio K92||4.3 x 7.48 x 7.87 in||1.23 pounds|
|AKG K702||4.45 x 7.83 x 8.35 in||8.2 ounces|
|AKG K550MKII||6 x 10 x 10 in||10.8 ounces|
|AKG N40||2.56 x 5.9 x 5.9 in||14.4 ounces|
1. AKG Y50
It only takes a passing glance to see these are AKG’s handiwork.
The ‘AKG’ lettering boldly brandished across the Y50s’ colourful red, yellow, teal or (less colourful) black ear cups is certainly a talking point of these on-ears – a top-end model in AKG’s new lifestyle headphone range, the Y-Series.
Sitting just below the flagship Y55 over-ears (£100), the Y50s are part of a three in-ears and three on-ears range.
Their bold look is perhaps a little out of character for the Austrian company, but it’s a clear step towards refreshing its entire headphone collection (which until now has largely consisted of the famous K Series) and attracting a younger market.
These hugely impressive wired headphones are six-time What Hi-Fi? Award winners. Excelling in sound and style, they’re blessed with aluminium ear cups, soft leather ear pads and dynamic sound on a grand scale. Thrilling levels of detail and near-flawless balance would be enough to set them apart from the competition.
But factor in the sub-£100 price point, not to mention the portable design, and the Y50s are true show stoppers.
- Rhythmic, clear and detailed
- Dynamic and punchy
- Sources might need to be turned up
- Ears get warm after a while
Here’s the cheapest model of the whole AKG line. So what would you normally expect from $50 headphones? Not much, right?
And if you’re looking for heavy-bass sound, move on as these headphones do not over boost low frequencies, but rather replicate them as they were intended to sound.
Now, even though many reviewers describe treble as being the main weak point of these cans, they also highlight the fact that no distortion can be heard in the whole frequency range, which is extremely rare in this price range.
And having into account their very low price, most users still agree that these are among the best headphones in this price range.
- Smooth, enjoyable sound
- Plenty of detail, clarity and fluid dynamics
- Great rhythmic ability
- Nothing at this price
The AKG K702 are reference open studio headphones that are made for precision listening, mixing and mastering. They cover a wide frequency range from 10 to 39800 Hz, Their flat-wire voice coil contributes to their high sensitivity, their impulse as well as their treble response.
The sound quality of the K702 is spacious, clean and very crisp. It has a level of sophistication that you would normally expect from higher end headphones, with spacious and airy sound that brings out the best in audio recordings.
If you love instrumental and orchestra music performances, the K702 are headphones that you should definitely get.
The K702’s open-ear technology provides the listener with spacious and airy sound which creates a wide and three-dimensional sound-field. Featuring over-ear design, 3D-foam ear pads and a padded genuine-leather headband, they ensure a snug fit as well as wearing comfort for long work sessions.
Featuring wired connectivity technology, they come with a high-performance 3 m cable and they provide a professional mini XLR connector for quick replacement of the cable.
- Excellent value
- Very comfortable
- Coloured, boxy mids
4. AKG K550MKII
AKG’s K550MKII are the headphones to get if you’re doing intensive studio work. They are an amazing value and meet the demand for audio precision editing and tracking, thanks to AKG’s largest driver size available.
Not to mention, the closed-back design keeps all sound insulated. The over-ear headphones weigh 10.7 ounces and are designed with a 2-d axis folding flat mechanism that makes for easy storage and transportation.
The comfy padded ear cups blast a 12 to 28,000Hz frequency with a 114-decibel sensitivity and 32 ohms of impedance, so you can pinpoint high trebles and low basses.
- Open, airy presentation
- Agile and rhythmic
- Durable and comfortable
- Nothing at this price
5. AKG N40
These high-end AKG headphones are also some of the lightest. They weigh only 13.6 ounces, but their tech-specs and audio output will knock you off your seat The AKG N40 headphones have three replaceable sound filters that allow for bass, mid, or high frequencies to modulate into your ears while suiting your personal sound preferences.
The behind-the-ear headphones are designed with rounded ear tips for easy fitting and produce a robust 10 to 40,000Hz frequency range, 20 ohms of impedance and 115-decibel sensitivity.
They come with a fully accessorized travel bag, a flight adapter, mic and remote cable, cleaning tool, straight cable, as well as three replaceable ear sleeves.
- Solid design
- Rich, controlled sound
- Good detail and weight
- Very keen bass
- Would flourish with greater airiness
How we test the akg headphones
From the design and comfort to the sound quality and overall value, we evaluate several areas when picking the best akg headphones. In addition, We employ a rigorous review process that compares products with similar fit, features, and pricing.
Each pair of headphones and earbuds is worn over the course of a week for 2 hours at a time. During this time, the staff evaluates comfort and fit, ease of use, and audio.
We test sound by listening to predetermined sample tracks across different music genres, including hip-hop, rock, jazz, classical, and pop. Volume, clarity, and fullness is evaluated too. Movies, podcasts, and video games are considered, when necessary.
Regarding features, we test the effectiveness of active noise cancelling, Bluetooth range, and battery life for wireless and wired headphones.
Additional features are also tested for app-enabled headphones, along with ease of setup. Build quality, controls, and fit are taken into serious consideration for wired headphones. Fitness-focused headphones go through vigorous workouts, as we analyze fit while exercising and how well they handle ambient sound in loud environments.
Whether you want to splash the cash on deluxe, studio-quality over-ears, or fancy a pair of premium yet portable in-ears, AKG has something to offer. Want to block out ambient noise during a busy commute or flight? (Remember commutes?) Opt for a pair of noise-cancellers and you’ll be swathed in solitude.