Sunday, September 17, 2017

AKG N40 2-way Hybrid In Ear Monitor Review

AKG has been bringing us great headphones for many years.  Next up is the AKG N40 IEM’s. They are a new model for AKG, designed for Hi-Res Audio. AKG is known for their great sounding products, and these AKG N40’s seem to be a continuation of that tradition. With an MSRP of $399, they also give a big bang for the buck, with a lot of features!

Features and specs:

·         Type: Sealed 2-WAY hybrid type (canal) / unit: for the mid-high range: Balanced armature driver × 1 / low-pass: 8mm diameter dynamic driver × 1

·         Frequency characteristic: 10Hz ~ 40kHz / impedance: 20Ω / Sensitivity: 109dB / mW

·         Input Plug: φ3.5mm mini plug (straight-through) / cable length: 1.2m

·         Weight (without cable): 22g

·         Accessories: earphone cable two (Straight 4-pole plug smart phone for a three-button remote control equipped with cable with microphone), mechanical-tuning filter (HIGH BOOST, REFERENCE, BASS BOOST) REFERENCE installation settled, ear tips (XS / S / M / L)  M size installation settled, dedicated carrying case, flight adapter, cleaning tool.

The AKG N40 came in a nice looking printed box, with photos of the IEM, and their specs. There is even a clear plastic window so you can see them. Materials used in the construction was both metal and plastic. Quality of materials used, as well as the fit and finish, was very good. To add to their bang for the buck, they also came with a lot of accessories:  a hard zipper case, wax tool, airline adapter, multiple sized ear tips, sound filters, and two different cables. One was a regular cable, and the other had a built-in remote. I always love seeing detachable cables. Now let's see how well they sound!

Twenty One Pilots: Heathens, percussion was crisp, clean, with good resolution and dynamics.  Bass was very deep, tight, with lots of authority.  Piano sounded natural.  Vocals were natural with nice timbre and texture.  Imaging was good, and they threw a big soundstage.  Kansas: Carry On Wayward Son, vocals were nice and smooth with very nice texture and harmonics.  Percussion was crisp and dynamic.  Keyboard sounded natural.  Kick drum had nice low end extension.  They actually threw a nice sized soundstage with good imaging.  Fresh Aire: Going To Another Place, had very good resolution of the strings, with a crisp clean sound.  Flute was smooth with lots of air.  Piano sounded very natural with good harmonics.  Kick drum had nice tight impact that had good depth and authority.

The AKG N40 are a great product for those audiophiles on a tight budget. The AKG N40 had better resolution, and improved bass response, thanks to the hybrid design that uses a balanced armature for the highs and mids, and a dynamic driver for the bass. And thanks to the interchangeable audio filters, you can further adjust the sound for either reference, bright, or extra bass, depending on your preferred sound signature.  Add to the fact that they also come with a detachable cable, and a very durable design thanks to the metal housing, the AKG N40 should also last a long time.  I know many audiophiles will find themselves in love.  based on the design, features, quality, and performance, the AKG N40 has earned our Highly Recommended award.  For more info and complete specs, check out their website at