Hands-on with a AKG N90Q headphones done in partnership with Quincy Jones
This is not a initial time AKG and mythological writer Quincy Jones have assimilated forces. Back in 2011, Quincy and AKG introduced a AKG Q701, a large span of studio-focused, open-back headphones that were flattering large yet did sound fantastic.
The new AKG N90Q headphones, that launch after this year labelled during around £1,299, aim to broach a same glorious sound peculiarity yet also guarantee to regulate sound to fit your ears, all from built-in controls.
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Unlike a Q701s, a N90Q have a some-more normal headphone design. It’s a inexhaustible assisting of bullion on a ear cups and on a sections of a wipe that will assistance them mount out. Apparently that was a call of Quincy’s daughter, yet if we wish something some-more low-key, there will be a reduction eye-catching black chronicle accessible in a UK.
The build quality, unsurprisingly for a span of £1,500 span of headphones, is plain and they’re built for comfort. The oval memory-foam ear cushions are lonesome in leather and there’s a good volume of stuffing only next a headband. There’s copiousness of steel on uncover here as well, with aluminium on a hinges as good as a control ring and a ear cups. They import 430g, so are by no means light, yet we didn’t feel like they were unwieldy to wear.
On a left ear cup, you’ll find a dial, that AKG says can control tone. Like a built-in EQ, rotating a dial lets we corkscrew by to adjust a drum and treble. Over on a right ear crater is a volume control dial, yet next that you’ll find a many engaging feature. Just underneath a on/off switch for a active sound cancelling is a symbol to activate what AKG is job a “auto-calibration solution”.
Using a exclusive ‘TrueNote’ technology, a headphones can perform active vigilance estimate regulating dual microphones in any ear crater that indicate a anatomy of a ear. This calibrates a magnitude and tailors a sound formed on your conference turn and a figure of your ears. To activate it, you’ll need to reason a symbol for 5 seconds and afterwards let it go. Within a second you’ll hear a brief tinge and afterwards a song earnings practiced and ideally matched to your ears. At least, that’s a idea.
But there’s more. The N90Qs also offer 3 opposite soundstage settings to serve fine-tune and customise audio. The Standard mode disables digital vigilance processing, vouchsafing we daub into DTS and Dolby audio sources. In Studio, there’s a larger importance on delivering a some-more healthy facsimile of tracks. Lastly, there’s a approximate sound sourroundings to get a larger separation, that is some-more common with orchestral music.
Just next a calibration symbol is a 3.5mm headphone jack and a Micro USB port. Along with a built-in DAC, that means we can suffer lossless audio from places like Tidal. Powering opening are 52mm drivers, that use a singular Japanese paper surface to improved align a motorist and a ear canal, eventually improving a altogether sound quality.
So how do they sound? we was advantageous to spend utterly a bit of time listening to them both in a soundproof counter and out on a emporium building during Harman Kardon’s New York store. Bottom line, they sound illusory even yet fiddling with a calibration and EQ features. That’s a really slightest I’d design from a span of £1,500 headphones. Listening by a preference of Quincy Jones tracks, there’s copiousness of detail, poetic low-end regard and good mid-range. Bass complements rather than overwhelms and it delivers excellently opposite a sound spectrum.
I also had a event to review them to a likewise labelled Sennheiser HD800 and Beyerdynamic T1 headphones inside a booth. With a further of ambient sound from a store still seeping through, it wasn’t a fairest approach to see how they perform opposite their competitors. The Sennheiser and Beyerdynamic headphones both sound good in really singular ways, yet there was really a tiny some-more refinement and clarity on certain marks from a AKG headphones.
Moving out to a demo dilemma in a store, we had a possibility to play around some-more with a auto-calibration and tonal controls a bit more. Again, it was formidable to decider how good a TrueTone tech worked in this environment, and this emphasises a fact that they are still really focused on home listening. After fiddling around on certain tracks, we can recognize some of a pointed differences during slightest with a tonal controls. we started with a few Charlie XCX tracks, and was means to revoke some of a rudeness in a bass. Next we changed onto some jazz and indie music. Again, it’s here where a EQ creates a participation felt.
From an active sound cancelling indicate of view, it’s most of what I’d design from a high-end span of headphones. They’re a poignant step adult from a leaky Q701s, display they’re good versed to retard out associate commuters or screaming kids using around your house. There’s a built-in battery powering a ANC, that lasts for 12 hours. When it’s flat, you’re out of sound, yet AKQ does embody a tiny energy bar battery container that looks a lot like a smartphone horse and can also energy adult your phone.
While a AKG N90Q are headphones pitched during anyone who wants to have some-more control over how their song sounds, there’s going to be really few who can indeed means to buy them.
On-the-go audiophiles will be happy to hear that these sound fantastic, yet do they sound improved than a decent closed-back span of headphones like a £600 Audeze EL-8? I’m not assured only yet. I’d really need to do some some-more listening to make a call on it.
The tech on house is exciting, though, and it’s clearly going to give them critical interest for high-resolution song lovers who will comfortable to a thought of so most sound customisation. we can’t wait to spend some some-more time with them to see what they’re truly able of.