AKG Quincy Jones Q460

This story originally appeared at InnerFidelity.com

AKG Quincy Jones Q460 (~$129 Street)
Unlike the brand-spanking new headphones produced for their celebrated endorsers by the likes of Skullcandy (Jay-Z, Mix-Master Mike), Signeo (Ludacris), and Monster (Dr. Dre), AKG chose a path of less resistance and simply rebadged some of its existing headphones for Quincy Jones. The Q701 was previously the highly regarded K701 (a good choice, I thought), the AKG K340 in-ear became the Q350 (meh), and the K450 became the Q460. Ugh, never did like that headphone. I thought there was a much better choice available if I was Quincy Jones. I'll spill it in the summary, let's talk about the Q460 first.

The AKG Q460 is a small sealed headphone intended for portable use with cellphones and portable media players. They are a fairly utilitarian looking headphone with a mostly plastic construction, and appear well built. AKG is a quality manufacturer and generally does a good job in this regard. They are available in white, black, and Quincy Jones lime green color schemes. Other than the color there is really no bling factor here, they are pretty plain looking headphones.

The cable exits the left ear and is removable; it uses a standard 2.5mm stereo plug but with a special twist-lock housing, so after market cables would be difficult to attach. Two lime green cables are included: a 3.6 foot cable with iDevice remote/mic; and a very short 1.6 foot cable without remote. Both cables are terminated with a straight and slender 1/8" mini-plug. A 3.5mm to 2.5mm four segment adapter for use with cellphones is included --- nice touch. Also included is a hard-sided, clamshell carry case.

The ergonomics of these headphones is just okay. The Q450 is a little bulky for a headphone of this type. I feel if you're trying to go small, then go small. The Sennheiser PX 200-II is a great example of this type of headphone, but that is significantly lighter on the head and way smaller when packed away.

The swivel mechanism on the earpiece doesn't allow the earpiece to tilt. I found the pressure to seal the earpad was somewhat greater at the bottom of the ear than it was at the top. I found them more awkward than uncomfortable ... but that sort of amounts to the same thing with headphones after a while on the head.

The earpieces swivel flat and fold inward for storage in the case, which is the size of a small, but fat, paperback book. This is huge compared to the Sennheiser PX 200-II that folds up roughly into the size of a pair of glasses. Lastly, I'm not sure what to do with the 1.6' cable. Possibly for when you have a phone in your breast pocket, but even then it's so short you can hardly get the phone far away enough from your eyes to see stuff. (Yeah ... my eyes are getting old.) I think they should have included a longer cable so that you can use these cans around the office --- the 3.6' cable is good for portability, but it's too short for office use.

Ah well, on to the sound ...

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400 Atlantic Street
Stamford, CT 06901, USA