As to be expected, a new set of headphones bearing the name of music icon Quincy Jones come with no small degree of hype. After all, “Q” doesn't put his name on just anything. Grammy-winning producer/arranger/composer Jones is associated with quality sound; if he's behind an audio product, it better be good, right? So the big question here is, do the Q460 headphones live up to their hype – and their namesake's reputation?
Most definitely. The Q460 provide sound reproduction that's as vivid, punchy, powerful and accurate as you're likely to hear from commercially available on-ear phones. They're comparable with the studio-level “cans” they were developed to emulate. They are ear-delicious.
They're also visually striking! The nearly florescent green color of the model I reviewed (they're also available in black) is certainly vivid and hard to miss. It may not appeal to more refined consumer, but the Facebook generation will probably love it. It's certainly original and bold. And you probably won't have much trouble finding these in the dark.
The design is very impressive. Both earpieces fold completely flat and inward, allowing them to fit in the included very cool and very compact carrying case for a small footprint when you take them on the road.
Comfort is always an issue, especially with over-the-ear headphones. In today's iPod society, earbuds have become the norm, so it's good thing that the Q460 model is built for comfort. It's relatively lightweight – I had the set on for hours and didn't feel the head-fatigue that sometimes comes with having a heavy set of full headphones on.
The earpieces felt good on the ears, never irritating. As I typically use lightweight, behind-the-head earphones, I wondered if I'd feel the difference over time, but truthfully I didn't. These are most likely the most comfortable over-ears headphones I've ever experienced.
Back to the sound: The Q460 unit does your music of any kind justice. Bass is especially punchy, highs are crisp and clear, stereo separation is well-defined. Distortion is virtually nonexistent thanks to noise-reducing oxygen-free cables. You can hear the Quincy Jones touch with every note. I'll bet his production work on Michael Jackson's “Thriller” album sounds great on these.
The Q460 headphones provide this superb sound for a variety of media. AKG and Harman wisely configured the unit to work with the iPod, iPhone and iPad. The iPhone compatibility is especially unique and valuable, as the hookup incorporates an in-line microphone and three-button remote control to ensure easy smartphone use and transition to music mode.
Click here to View Larger but whatever device you're hooked up to will probably sound better than ever before through these. I can't imagine there are any earbuds that could compare to the audio you'll experience with these.
All in all, the Q460 are an excellent, standout entry into today's star-endorsed line of quality headphones. With a $229 MSRP (they retail for around $170), these headphones aren't cheap – but they're well worth every penny.
For further info, check out the Q460 here.