If you’re looking for a versatile microphone for the studio and live, AKG has got you covered

One of the most celebrated brands to have walked the world of professional audio is AKG, the Austrian-formed company that is responsible for creating some of the most ubiquitous microphones and headphones in studio and stage history.

AKG started life supplying film equipment to theatres in post-war Vienna, and since then, the firm has produced some of the most iconic microphones including the D12 and C414, to name but a few.

Now in its 75th year, we are taking a look at some of AKG’s current roster of mics and headphones, including the current iteration of the legendary C414, the XL mkII.

The XLII is one of two models that are leading the ‘414 line, with the other model being the XLS. Both mics retain the sonic character of their forebears, with the XLII’s lineage traceable back to the original C12, famous for its upfront and defined characteristics that can lend itself for capturing a wide-range of sources.

While both the C414 models represent the top end of AKG’s large diaphragm offerings, there are a couple of models that occupy the more affordable end of the market. Both the C314 and 214 models keep the price down with the inclusion of a back-electret diaphragm design, as opposed to the ‘414’s DC-biased technology.

This might be a cost-saving exercise, but AKG still manages to get the most out of the technology with both models providing an excellent feature set and sonic qualities that have trickled down from the more high-end models.

AKG 75th anniversary

(Image credit: Future)

‘Phone it in

Of course, we can’t talk about AKG’s long-lasting legacy without mentioning its rich heritage in headphone production.

You’ve probably seen countless pairs of AKG headphones on stage and in the studio over the years as the brand’s monitoring prowess is as ubiquitous as its mic offerings. With a design that is unmistakably ‘AKG’, their circumaural cans are used for monitoring, mixing and referencing in all walks of audio life.

Perhaps some of the most popular are the long-running K240s which are now on their second iteration, the K240 mkII. Like the original, the mkIIs offer the same semi-open design delivering both the airiness of an open-backed design with the tight and deep bass response associated with a closed-back design.

At the other end of the price scale is the 800 series, which features two models, the K812 and the K872 (open-back and closed-back versions respectively). These are AKG’s master referencing range which sport whopping 53mm custom drivers with 1.5 Tesla Magnets systems to deliver unrivalled precision.

Stepping away from AKG’s floating headband and round cup design and sitting in the middle of its headphone offering are the newer K361 and K371, the latter slightly more refined with the professional end-user in mind. The 300 range is aimed at the wider ‘content-creator’ so will be able fulfil a multitude of audio scenarios that are thrown its way. On top of this, they are designed for everyday use, in their design and with the option of Bluetooth models for creators on the go.

To check out the rest of AKG’s range of headphones and microphones, visit the AKG website now.