Harman Combines Forces With Quincy Jones For New AKG Headphone Line

It’s not clear to me exactly what exactly people like Quincy Jones and Dr Dre do to make their particular brands of audio gear better. I mean, they put their name on them, probably because they are satisfied with how they sound, but is that the extent of their involvement? Well, whatever the case, Quincy Jones (a Garfield High School alumni like myself) has seen fit to put his stamp on a new set of AKG headphones.

The new line is definitely premium: the Q350 in-ears are $150, the Q701 reference headphones are $480, and the more compact Q460 is somewhere in between. They left the price out of the press release and it’s not at AKG’s site. I’m going to say $250.

The new headphones should be available in October.

Here’s the full press release:

Music Legend Quincy Jones Partners with HARMAN, Unveils New Signature Line of AKG Headphones

Three New Styles of Headphones Celebrate Unparalleled Sound Quality in Distinct Style

For more information: http://www.akg.com/Quincy

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. – HARMAN International Industries Incorporated (NYSE: HAR), today announced the arrival of the Quincy Jones Signature Line by AKG. The premium headphone collection represents a momentous partnership between AKG and one of the most accomplished musicians of the 20th century – Quincy Jones.

Musician, artist, humanitarian – Quincy Jones is an American icon. His productions, which include the best-selling album (Thriller) and single (“We Are the World”) of all time, have garnered him an unprecedented 79 GRAMMY® nominations and 27 GRAMMY awards, more than any other living artist. His list of notable achievements is unrivaled in the music industry. The list of legendary and contemporary artists with whom he has worked includes Aretha Franklin, Mary J. Blige, Ray Charles, Duke Ellington, Michael Jackson, Ludacris, Paul McCartney, Frank Sinatra and Usher, among many others.

“Music is so much more than notes on a sheet of paper,” Jones said. “When it’s created with passion, with soul, we get something that is greater than ourselves – and it can move us deeply. Throughout my entire career, I have trusted only AKG to deliver the highest standard of sound – the same standard I hold myself to when I make my music.”

The Quincy Jones Signature Line includes three models: the Q701 reference-class premium over-ears, the Q460 high-performance portable on-ear mini headphones and the Q350 in-ear headphones that will boast distinctive AKG®-built quality and unrivaled audio engineering in an elegant, portable design, so music lovers everywhere can experience sound the way every artist intended for their music to be heard.

“Quincy Jones and AKG have shared a long-running passion for quality sound and the infinite power music has to connect people and touch lives,” said Dinesh C. Paliwal, chairman, president and CEO, HARMAN International. “We have partnered to introduce products into the marketplace that shine a light on how important sound quality is when you’re experiencing music in all aspects of your life.”

A share of the proceeds from every set of headphones sold in the Quincy Jones Signature Line by AKG will go toward the Quincy Jones Musiq Consortium, a foundation dedicated to making music education an ongoing part of the lives of American children.

Pricing and Availability

The Q701, Q460 and Q350 headphones will be available in October 2010, in time for the holiday season, at prices ranging from $149.99 to $479.99. To experience the Quincy Jones Signature Line by AKG yourself or for more specific product information, please visit http://www.akg.com/Quincy. An additional backgrounder with product specifications will also be available upon request.