Its been some time since I have personally reviewed a pair of AKGs dating back to the K845BTs which were on-ear headphones and also wireless. Since then AKG has come out with some pretty stylish headphones I feel are directed towards the younger crowd. This time around they are showing off the AKG N60nc wired headphones which are stated to be noise cancelling and lightweight. Are the worth the hefty price tag?
Pulling them out the box besides that shiny metallic ring around the earcups hitting your eyes is how light they are. They come in at 150g and maybe some of the lightest headphones I dealt with. On the left side of the earcup is where you will have access to the ANC(active noise cancelling) button and also the 3.5mm braided audio cable. Interesting thing with these headphones is not that they come with a braided usb cable for charging but they use that same audio jack to do so. It might not sound like a big deal but I’m used to charging headphones with microUSB wires which I have laid out everywhere. I suggest once you finish charging to put this cable back inside the included slim carry pouch for the headphones.
Great thing about the N60nc is how portable they are. They fold up and get pretty compact and can be thrown in that case. At times I have been able to throw it in my jacket pocket which is a harder feat with some headphones so points on that.
Sound / Features
So as stated earlier these are ANC headphones and do they fit the term noise cancelling. Flick that switch on and you will be immersed into the music you are listening to. Now I have usually seen that effect more so on over-ear headphones but these on-ears are pretty phenomenal. Even when the power dies out on the ANC you can still listen to them passively and they sound good. AKG took their time tuning the N60nc and it shows. They have a nice amount of bass that isn’t overbearing and vocals come out clear and crisp. Bear in mind you have to remember AKG is under the Harman brand and they definitely know sound.
So how do they hold up? I have used them for long periods of time on the busy noisy subways of NYC and they have held up great. You can’t really hear any outside noise and they don’t provide much audio leakage either. Wearing them for a while I didn’t experience any discomfort on the ears. This is usually only from on-ears pressing up against my glasses but these surprisingly didn’t. Once gripe I have with these are they don’t auto shutoff. So you can end up leaving that ANC on, forget about it and poof they are dead. I definitely did it a couple of times. The included carrying case could be a smidgen bigger as you might be fidgeting getting the folded up headphones in there sometimes.
When I first got a look at them I couldn’t see why they held a hefty price tag of $249.99(originally $299) but my eyes have been opened up a bit. They provide excellent active noise cancelling, are very portable based on their weight and collapsible size and have a nice classic minimalist look to them. Of course they aren’t wireless but I don’t think you will miss that much with these.