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Underappreciated Budget Studio Monitors

A Review On: AKG Acoustics K240 Monitoring Headphones

AKG Acoustics K240 Monitoring Headphones

Rated # 105 in Over-Ear
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Review Details:
Audio Quality
Comfort
Design
Value
Purchased on:
Price paid: $60.00
madcob
Posted · Updated · 8104 Views · 2 Comments

Pros: comfort, aesthetically pleasing, non fatiguing sound , cheap , readily available, well built. great value

Cons: shallow earpads, slight lack of sparkle in treble, bass could be tighter, 600 ohms is hard to drive

Background:

I was looking for a studio monitor headphone for under a hundred bucks, I was going to buy the AKG K240 Studio at first but saw these "Monitors" on eBay for much cheaper, for 59 bucks I didn't hesitate to buy them although I was nervous about the 600 ohms impedance. They arrived in perfect condition with the elastics still having lots resistance, and the ear pads without any cracks, however the golden labels at the sides had fallen off (common issue). I hooked them up to my HK 3490 receiver which were being fed Apple lossless files from my computer through my uDac 2. After three minutes I was ready to return them, everything was muffled, mids, treble, bass, absolutely terrible. I was curious, and took off the earpads and the filter, what I saw shocked me. Literally half an inch of this strange dusty, black residue gunk was everywhere, it covered the six circles around the driver and was also on top of the actual driver, I think this was the dried up residue of the adhesive they used 20 something years ago to attach the cloth to the plastic. After giving both sides a thorough cleaning and dusting out the filters, they had transformed into something else. 

 

Bass- It's there, reaches quite low but isn't too emphasized and can be muddy at times, but not terrible at all. I listen to lots of bass driven music (rap, electronic) though I wouldn't call myself a basshead and I'm quite satisfied with the bass these put out.  

 

Mids- What these headphones excel at, a bit forward but never fatiguing, very clear and detailed, upper mids could be better. 

 

Treble: The reason why these headphones are never fatiguing is because of the rolled of treble. The lack of sparkle in the treble gives female voices a sometimes "dark" sound, I myself don't like a treble assault on my ears with headphones so I don't really mind this as it lets me listen to them for a long time but for you that want that pronounced treble, nothing a bit of EQ can't fix. 

 

Soundstage: Excellent, I can distinguish locations of instruments in live performances, and also where people are firing at me from when playing Call of Duty biggrin.gif

 

Comfort- I love the self adjusting headbands on this, not a lot of clamp, however these won't come off your easily, I have a slightly large head and these fit me well, I often forget I'm wearing these. I just wish the earpads were deeper and had more cushioning, my ears sometimes press against the drivers. 

 

Build Quality: Excellent, headband is solid, plastic used is sturdy, gold accents give it a sense of quality, leather is also soft on the ear pads, besides if these weren't well built how could they have lasted 20 something years?

 

Aesthetics: One of the greatest looking headphones ever made. 

 

Design- Are you kidding me? The K240 series is one of the most famous and successful headphone series' of all time spanning five generations: Sextett, Monitor, DF, Studio and MKII. 

 

Bang for the buck- $60 bucks for this type of sound quality is unheard of, even if you pay 90 bucks these are still a great deal.

 

Overall: A solid choice for a used, cheap monitor. After 30+ years, the K240 is still a studio standard.

 

 

Bass- 4/5     Mids- 4.5/5      Treble-3.7/5       Soundstage- 4.5/5      Comfort- 5/5       Build Quality-5/5        Aesthetics- 5/5        Design-5/5      Bang for the buck- 5/5    Overall- 4.5/5 

2 Comments:

that dust used to be the foam layer that was attached to the cloth, go grab some new inserts to get it sounding back to stock. The foam needs to be there and will affect the final sound. Thanks for reviewing these! ( have some also )
Got mine on ebay too. Sounded horrible at first so I took them apart because I was able to get them for $40 and figured if anything I'd just be out $40. Once everything was clean.... damn. I was amazed. I went to ace hardware and bought some window unit ac for $2.50 foam, cut circles out, and stuck them between the pads and the driver after getting all the gunk out. I find the bass a bit lacking for rap and edm, but metal sounds fantastic. Didn't go all Call of Duty, but Battlefield with these is better than my virtual 7.1 G930 Logitech headset.
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