AKG K451 High-Performance Foldable Mini Headset (Black)

General Information

Wherever you go, the K451 goes with you.The AKG® K451 high-performance, foldable mini headset is one of the most convenient on-the-go accessories you can find. At only 120 grams (4.2 ounces), the K451 is easy to bring anywhere. It's compatible with smartphones and MP3 players, including iPad, iPod and iPhone models. Its ear pads are so soft that you can easily wear it for hours. And its inline microphone and remote control keep your hands free. What's more, the K451 offers sensational sound: a wide frequency range (11Hz to 29.5kHz), great sensitivity (126dB SPL/V) and a closed-back design that preserves and delivers every note from your source device. Whether you're flying to exotic lands or walking around your house, the K451 headset can keep your ears happy. AKG® K451 at a glance ?         Sound that goes anywhere you go?         3D-Axis2 folding mechanism for easy storage and portability?         Compatibility with any MP3 player?         Hear your music through our ears?         Two single-sided, detachable, 99.99% oxygen-free cables?         In-line remote control and microphone?         Soft ear pads for maximum comfort?         Closed-back desi

Latest reviews

Pros: Price, compact, useful with phone/great remote, great bass
Cons: A little flimsy, perhaps not audiophile quality
I bought these through an internet auction site for a very reasonable fee, so that will affect my view on these slightly as I've not paid RRP.
I am more than happy with the quality of sound that these put out from my iPhone. The soundstage picks out the individual instruments and puts them together very well with a good measure of bass (which was my main requirement for purchase). I have a varied taste in music, but is mostly rock/alternative and it plays these very effectively with even the acoustic versions coming through with great clarity. I have trained as a sound engineer, and have a good audible range in my hearing so was expecting to be able to pick out issues, but have been very pleasantly surprised.
I do not have a $500 version to compare this to as yet, so I may yet amend my view if/when I add to my collection, but I am more than happy with this purchase.
Pros: Compact, solid build, carry case included, cable can be replaced, single sided cable, easy to live with sound, good bass response
Cons: Can become uncomfortable after long periods, lacks a little sparkle
Considering the poor review level here I felt I had to post a review:
I spent some time checking reviews of these AKG K451 headphones, and found conflicting comments. What I can do is confirm that What Hifi (who awarded these a best buy in 2014) were right, these are excellent headphones even straight out of the box with no burn in time. My requirements were for a compact set of 'on-ear' folding headphones. This obviously means certain compromises need to be made, so the 451s will not match up to larger more expensive headphones, but for £50 are excellent performers. Build quality feels good and though I have only had them a few days, don't feel that anything is likely to break. On-ear pressure is quite firm and for extended listening sessions can start to become uncomfortable, but all headphones do after a while anyway. There is minimal sound leakage as long as they are correctly positioned on your ears. Very pleased I went with these.
I do prefer bass heavy music and find very 'bright' headphones fatiguing to use, so prefer the softer sound these have. The treble does lack a little sparkle, but for their size and cost, these are very enjoyable headphones.
Pros: Nice packaging. The remote control seems to work
Cons: Mediocre at best...

I joined head-fi specificaly to post this review....


First - my credentials as a headphone user (as far as they go). I've been into hi-fi for 3 decades, and consider myself a reasonably discerning and critical listener. I'm currently using some byerdanmic p50t's, a pair of koss prota pros :-D and some sound magic e10 in-ears for the bus :frowning2:.

Disclaimer - I've also posted more or less the same review below on the What Hi-Fi site. Everyone needs to be warned about these lame headphones! We have to save ourselves from the pernicious mediocrity and terrible superficiality they represent!

I honestly can't understand how these headphones won any kind of award, let alone the What Hi-Fi best product (headphone) award 2012.

I just picked up a pair from Richer Sounds for £50, a bargin i thought given the list price (I'm assuming they are not fakes, given the vendor). I bought them as an alternative to my sound magic e10 in-ears, partly becuase i'm fed up of stuffing things into my ears in the office every day, and partly becuase i wanted something a bit more capable of reporudcing the subtle low end in some of the stuff i listen to most (electronic mostly), whilst still delivering decently textured mid and highs.

Perhaps my expectations were unrealistic, but the AK451's are sadly far from an improvement...

The K451's are (very) muddy in the mid and high's, far too bass heavy, boxy and echoic, present a cramped-to-the-point-of-claustrophobia sound stage about as big as a postage stamp and are nothing even close to transparent or detailed. My £25 koss porta pros that make these seem over priced. My (admitadly much more expensive) Bayerdymanic p50t's make these look just plain silly.

I'm hopping that the rumor of them improving with extensive burn in is correct rather than just some sort of desperate self-confirming rationalisation on the part of many a disapointed buyer. I'm going to try them again after running white noise through them for 48 hours. They'll have to improve considerably if they are not to end up on ebay, or in the bin...

Perhaps they are terribly subject to batch variation, or they have somehow changed the drivers since this review. This can be the only explanation for such an apparently misleading award? Perhaps one for WHF to persue with AKG? :-/

UPDATE: I just some comparison listening between theses and the 5 other pairs of headphones i own. No amount of burn it will improve these to an acceptable level - they're awful. I'm returning them. :frowning2:

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