Build quality: 7/10
Sound Quality: 8/10
This one is going to be brief because there is not much to say, these are pretty great
few months back my friend tried these headphones. Few days ago she wanted to buy it from me. And I quote her to start this review off “I’ve never heard music like I did with this headphone”
Hello ladies and gentlemen. I am a hobbyist that creates reviews and post beautiful Instagram photos of various audio equipment. That being said, my passion for audio quality started with my Sennheiser HD598s. However over time I felt the HD598s lacked bass. But I loved my HD598s and wanted something that contains the sound stage + bass. I came across the AKG 550 and immediately fell in love with it. If anyone asks me “what should my first audiophile headphone be?” I would without hesitation recommend you the AKG 550. You might think I am crazy comparing open headphones to closed ones but you will see my reasoning in this review.
The company operates in Austria, and was founded in Vienna in 1947 by physicist Dr. Rudolf Görike and engineer Ernst Pless. Originally, its main business was to provide technical equipment for cinemas: loudspeakers, film projectors and light meters. The business slowly expanded and AKG started selling car horns, door intercoms, carbon capsules for telephones, headsets and cushion speakers. The first AKG microphone was used by radio stations, theaters, jazz clubs and cabarets. About this time, the company developed its first patents, the moving coil technology and the principle of mass load membranes, allowing its products to have extended frequency ranges. With the creation of the D12 microphone in 1953, AKG achieved international fame, setting the standard for voice transmissions. Being the world’s first dynamic cardioid microphone, it possessed excellent sonic qualities for that time, making its way into radio stations and recording studios from across the world.The product was improved through subsequent upgrades, spanning the famous C414 and C12 microphones.In 1984, AKG became a public company, listed on the Vienna stock exchange. As a blue chip company, it was one of the most traded stocks.The company was acquired by the American company Harman International Industries in 1994. By this time, AKG’s United States subsidiary had been established (in Los Angeles in 1985). AKG Acoustics USA, still headquartered in the San Fernando Valley, also houses regional offices for Crown Audio, another Harman Industries subsidiary.
In 2010, the company received the prestigious Technical Grammy award.
THE BUILD QUALITY
The build quality on these headphone is phenomenal. Its practically metal on metal on metal. It is extremely sturdy. With that being said, it is bulky enough to consider it a full sized headphone. The headphone is adjustable through some real nice mechanism. The fit is very comfortable and the stocks pads are one of the softest I’ve ever felt. However the downsize is that you cannot buy the stock pads anywhere, not even from AKG. I have a pretty standard head and it is pretty big on me. I bought these because it is a closed headphone, but they do not isolate sound very well due to the fit being too loose. Also the wire is nondetachable terminating in a straight 3.5mm jack.
AKG advertised these as “sound stage of an open back in a closed set of headphones” and they have every right to. These do have a sound stage the surpasses many closed set of headphones. However like I have mentioned before, these do not have the qualities we would be seeking from a closed set of headphone, I would categorized these somewhere in the semi-open headphone zone. The sound stage is give or take at the HD598 level.
This is a MIDDD ranged headphone. However there is some bass that will satisfy you. This was something lacking in the HD598s. the treble is clear but can get sibilant in certain songs. Overall, the sound is something of preference and this was a good experience for me.
This headphone does have negatives here and there but in the end… for the price point, it is one of the best entry level headphones you can purchase.