AKG N60NC Wireless Headphones Review

Tested using Methodology v1.3.1
Reviewed Feb 14, 2019 at 11:17 am
AKG N60NC Wireless Picture
Test Methodology v1.3.1
7.0
Mixed Usage
7.2
Neutral Sound
7.4
Commute/Travel
7.0
Sports/Fitness
7.1
Office
5.3
Wireless Gaming
7.0
Wired Gaming
6.7
Phone Call
Type On-ear
Enclosure Closed-Back
Wireless Yes
Noise Cancelling Yes
Mic Yes
Transducer Dynamic

The AKG N60NC are decent mixed-usage closed-back on-ear headphones and are quite versatile for everyday casual use. They have a sound profile that is better suited for bass-heavy genres and their ANC feature blocks a good amount of background noise, which is great for commuting. They are fairly comfortable, but since they rest on your ears, some may prefer over-ear designs. Also, they won’t be ideal for sports as they wobble when you move too much. On the upside, they have a decent battery life that will last you a full workday and have less latency than most Bluetooth headphones.

Our Verdict

7.0 Mixed Usage

Decent for mixed usage. These on-ears are fairly comfortable, well-made, and have above-average sound quality to let you enjoy your favorite tracks accurately. Their ANC feature isolates a decent amount of noise, which can be good for commuting or at the office. Although they are comfortable and lightweight, they aren’t stable enough for physical activity. Their latency might be a bit high for watching video content and gaming, but they come with an audio cable to get rid of it that also has a better performing in-line mic as well.

7.2 Neutral Sound

Above-average for neutral listening. The AKG N60NC have an extended and powerful bass, a very good and fairly even mid range, and a very good treble. However, their bass is a bit boomy and the overemphasis continues in the mid range, making vocals and leads sound thick and cluttered. Also, their treble is rather uneven, and certain S and T sounds might be a bit sharp for some people. Overall, these headphones will be suitable for bass-heavy genres and won’t be ideal for vocal-centric music. Unfortunately, they don’t have any customization options.

See our Neutral Sound recommendations
7.4 Commute/Travel

Decent for commuting and traveling. These ANC headphones isolate a good amount of low-frequency sounds like engine rumble and will be a good option for bus rides and flights, especially if you play music. The AKG N60NC will be more portable than over-ears but are still slightly bulky and harder to keep on you at all times, unlike in-ears and earbuds.

See our Commute/Travel recommendations
7.0 Sports/Fitness

Decent for sports. While you’ll be able to enjoy your tracks with decent audio reproduction, these headphones aren’t the most stable on the head. They will move around if you run with them and they might fall off your head easily. Thankfully, their wireless design gets rid of the cable, and since they are on-ear, they’ll be more breathable than over-ears. They could be used at the gym for weightlifting, but will more than likely fall off if you jog on the treadmill.

See our Sports/Fitness recommendations
7.1 Office

Decent for the office. Their battery life will last you more than a full workday, but some may not find them comfortable enough to wear for hours. On the upside, their ANC feature isolates a good amount of ambient chatter, so you’ll be able to focus on your tasks. They also support multi-device pairing, which is convenient if you want to switch between your phone and office computer.

See our Office recommendations
5.3 Wireless Gaming

Sub-par for gaming. Their latency, while lower than most Bluetooth headphones, is still too high for gaming. Also, their integrated microphone won’t be ideal, but the AKG N60NC do come with an audio cable that gets rid of the latency issues, and you also get a better performing in-line microphone. However, they aren’t customizable like other gaming headsets.

See our Wireless Gaming recommendations
7.0 Wired Gaming
6.7 Phone Call
  • 7.0 Mixed Usage
  • 7.2 Neutral Sound
  • 7.4 Commute/Travel
  • 7.0 Sports/Fitness
  • 7.1 Office
  • 5.3 Wireless Gaming
  • 7.0 Wired Gaming
  • 6.7 Phone Call
Pros
  • Above-average audio reproduction.
  • Good isolation performance.
Cons
  • A bit harsh on already bright tracks.
  • Unusual control scheme layout.
  1. Update 11/21/2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.1.
  2. Update 11/6/2019: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.

Check Price

N60NC Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

Test Results

Design
Design
Style

The AKG N60NC Wireless have a similar look to the AKG K490-NC, but their larger design makes them look a bit more dense and durable. Their ear cups have polished metal rings and thick padding. Their headband is fully padded, which is slightly different from the K490 and doesn’t have big apparent screws where the cups fold. They are fairly low-profile but look quite good.

7.0
Design
Comfort
Weight 0.4 lbs
Clamping Force
0.6 lbs

The N60NC are fairly lightweight and their on-ear design is decently comfortable. You’ll be able to wear these for a few hours, but they might get uncomfortable after a while since they put pressure directly on your ears. On the upside, the padding is thick and comfortable, and the headband is more padded than that of the K490. The cups are also larger and cover more ear surface, which some may prefer.

6.3
Design
Controls
OS Compatibility
Not OS specific
Ease Of Use Good
Feedback Decent
Call/Music Control Yes
Volume Control Yes
Microphone Control No
Channel Mixing
N/A
Noise Cancelling Control No
Talk-Through
No
Additional Buttons No

The control scheme of the AKG N60 NC is simple and easy to use. However, the layout is a bit different from most headphones. There's a power switch for turning the headphone on/off, but it’s also used for their pairing procedure. There's another switch for track skipping that can also be pressed for playing/pausing music or to answer/end calls. The volume controls are placed in an unusual, but distinctive spot on the top of the right ear cup. The feedback of the physical buttons is decent and they feel clicky, but the sliding switches aren’t the best. Also, you don’t get any audio cues other than when powering the headphones on and off and once they connect to your device.

7.6
Design
Breathability
Avg.Temp.Difference 2.8 C

The AKG N60NC Wireless are breathable headphones thanks to their on-ear design. They trap less heat than over-ear headphones but might still make you sweat a bit more after a while, especially during physical activity. You might feel a slight difference in temperature while wearing them for long periods of time.

6.9
Design
Portability
L 6.5 "
W 4.6 "
H 1.3 "
Volume 39 Cu. Inches
Transmitter Required N/A

The AKG N60NC are decently portable due to their foldable cups. You’ll be able to slide them easily inside a bag, and you can protect them with the included pouch. The cups also rotate to lay flat too.

6.0
Design
Case
Type Pouch
L N/A
W N/A
H N/A
Volume N/A

They come with a pouch that will protect the headphones against scratches and very minor water exposure but won’t help prevent damage taken from falls.

7.0
Design
Build Quality

The AKG N60NC are fairly well-built headphones. They have a similar design to the K490-NC but the materials used seem denser and sturdier. The headband is fully made of metal, which is an upgrade over the K490’s and is also fully padded. The cups are also larger and seem to able to survive a few accidental drops without too much damage. However, since the cups rotate and fold, there are a few moving parts that could be susceptible to break after a while. If you are looking for a better-built option, check out the robust Beats Solo Pro.

6.0
Design
Stability

These headphones aren't the most stable. The cups are heavier than those of the K490 and they wobble around a lot if you move your head sideways. The headphones can slide fairly easily off your ears by simply tilting your head forward. This shouldn't be a problem for casual listening sessions, but they won't be usable for physical activity. Their wireless design eliminates the risk of having a cable that could get hooked on something, which would yank the headphones off your head.

Design
Headshots 1
Design
Headshots 2
Design
Top
Design
In The Box

  • AKG N60NC headphones
  • 1/8” TRRS audio cable
  • Micro-USB charging cable
  • Airplane adapter
  • Carrying pouch
  • Manuals

Sound
Sound
Sound Profile
Bass Amount
-0.49 db
Treble Amount
-1.74 db
7.7
Sound
Frequency Response Consistency
Avg. Std. Deviation
0.45 dB

The AKG N60NC Wireless have a good frequency response consistency. In the bass range, they seem to be using their ANC (active noise canceling) to verify the seal and ensuring proper bass delivery. In the treble range (below 10KHz), the maximum amount of deviation is about 6dB, which is good, but the positioning of the headphones on the head can definitely have an effect on their perceived brightness.

Sound
Raw Frequency Response
8.3
Sound
Bass Accuracy
Std. Err.
2.34 dB
Low-Frequency Extension
13.94 Hz
Low-Bass
-0.58 dB
Mid-Bass
2.21 dB
High-Bass
3.56 dB

The bass performance of the AKG N60NC is very good. The LFE (low-frequency extension) of 14Hz is excellent. Low-bass is flat and follows our target curve well, meaning these headphones will produce the right amount of thump and rumble. Mid-bass, responsible for the body of bass guitars and punch of the kick drums is quite well-balanced, but slightly overemphasized by 2dB. Also, high-bass is overemphasized by more than 3dB, which adds a bit of boominess to the sound.

8.0
Sound
Mid Accuracy
Std. Err.
2.67 dB
Low-Mid
2.77 dB
Mid-Mid
-0.49 dB
High-Mid
-3.26 dB

The mid-range performance is very good. The range is fairly even and flat, but there’s a 7dB tilt favoring lower frequencies, making vocals and lead instruments sound slightly thick and cluttered.

8.1
Sound
Treble Accuracy
Std. Err.
3.36 dB
Low-Treble
-0.01 dB
Mid-Treble
1.42 dB
High-Treble
-5.41 dB

The treble performance is very good. The response is rather uneven, but well-balanced across the whole range. On the other hand, the small peaks in the range could make some S and T sounds a bit sharp on already bright tracks.

7.2
Sound
Peaks/Dips
Peaks
1.79 db
Dips
1.58 db
8.8
Sound
Imaging
Weighted Group Delay
0.15
Weighted Amplitude Mismatch
0.49
Weighted Frequency Mismatch
1.25
Weighted Phase Mismatch
6.58

The imaging performance is excellent. The weighted group delay is at 0.15, which is very low. The GD graph also shows that the entire group delay response is below the audibility threshold. This ensures a tight bass and a transparent treble reproduction. Additionally, the L/R drivers of our test unit were very well-matched, which is important for the accurate placement and localization of objects (instruments, voice, footsteps) in the stereo image. However, these results are only valid for our unit, and yours may perform differently.

3.0
Sound
Soundstage
PRTF Accuracy (Std. Dev.)
3.11 dB
PRTF Size (Avg.)
1.96 dB
PRTF Distance
1.98 dB
Openness
2.0
Acoustic Space Excitation
3.0

The soundstage performance is poor. The PRTF graph shows little amount of ear activation and interaction, and it's not very accurate. Also, there's no 10KHz notch present either. This and the closed-back design of these headphones results in a soundstage that is perceived to be located inside the listener's head.

7.3
Sound
Weighted Harmonic Distortion
WHD @ 90
0.258
WHD @ 100
0.257
Isolation
8.0
Isolation
Noise Isolation
Isolation Audio
Overall Attenuation
-21.77 dB
Bass
-14.67 dB
Mid
-16.91 dB
Treble
-33.71 dB

The AKG N60NC have a decent active noise cancelation feature. In the bass range, where engine rumble sits, they provide about 15dB of isolation, which is good. In the mid-range, important for canceling out ambient speech, they achieved 17dB of isolation, which is also good. They also do well in the treble range, which is occupied by sharp sounds like S and Ts and fan noises like A/C systems and isolate by about 34dB.

7.6
Isolation
Leakage
Leakage Audio
Overall Leakage @ 1ft
36.24 dB

Their leakage performance is good. The significant portion of their leakage sits between 2KHz and 5KHz, which is a narrow range. The overall level of leakage is quite low too. With the music at 100dB SPL their leakage averages at 36dB SPL, but peaks at 58dB SPL which is about the noise floor of an average office.

Microphone
Microphone
Microphone Style
Integrated
Yes
In-line
Yes
Boom
No
Detachable Boom
N/A

The integrated microphone of the AKG N60NC Wireless has a mediocre performance. In quiet environments, speech recorded/transmitted with this mic will sound a bit thin, quite muffled, and will lack detail. However, it would still be decently understandable. In noisy situations, the mic will struggle to separate speech from ambient noise in loud environments, like in a subway. We have tested the integrated microphone since we judge the most common usage of these headphones would be wireless. We expect the in-line mic to perform slightly better.

6.3
Microphone
Recording Quality
Recorded Speech
LFE
289.23 Hz
FR Std. Dev.
3.04 dB
HFE
2751.68 Hz
Weighted THD
5.893
Gain
41.42 dB

The integrated mic has a mediocre recording quality. The LFE of 289Hz results in a recorded/transmitted speech that is relatively thin. The HFE of 2.8KHz is poor and suggests speech that is muffled and lacks detail. Overall, the intelligibility of speech on this microphone will still be decent in quiet environments.

6.1
Microphone
Noise Handling
Speech + Pink Noise
Speech + Subway Noise
SpNR
13.78 dB

The integrated microphone is mediocre at noise handling. In our SpNR test, the AKG N60NC achieved a speech-to-noise ratio of 14dB, indicating that the microphone performs best in quiet environments and may struggle in moderately loud environments.

Active Features
6.9
Active Features
Battery
Battery Type
Rechargable
Continuous Battery Life
13.2 hrs
Additional Charges
0
Total Battery Life
13.2 hrs
Charge Time
1.6 hrs
Power Saving Feature
No
Audio While Charging
No
Passive Playback
Yes
Charging Port micro-USB

The N60 NC have about 13 hours of continuous playback, which should last you a normal workday without any problem, but it is slightly under the advertised 15 hours. Also, if you use them wired with ANC on, you’ll double that number according to the AKG specs sheet. Unfortunately, the headphones don’t turn off automatically or enter a standby mode to save battery life, but you can use them passively with the included 1/8” TRRS audio cable, even if the battery is dead.

0
Active Features
App Support
App Name N/A
iOS N/A
Android N/A
macOS N/A
Windows N/A
Equalizer
N/A
ANC Control
N/A
Mic Control N/A
Room effects
N/A
Playback Control
N/A
Button Mapping N/A
Surround Sound N/A

These AKG are not compatible with the AKG Headphone mobile app, like the N700NC are. If you want on-ears that have an app for customization options, take a look at the Sony WH-XB700.

Connectivity
8.5
Connectivity
Bluetooth
Bluetooth Version
4.0
Multi-Device Pairing
2 Devices
NFC Pairing
No
Line of Sight Range
231 ft
Default Latency
141 ms
aptX Latency
114 ms
aptX(LL) Latency
N/A

The AKG N60NC Wireless support an older Bluetooth version, but this shouldn’t be an issue. On the upside, they can connect to two devices simultaneously, which means you’ll be able to easily switch between your phone and work computer for example. You can easily switch between the 2 devices thanks to the connection slider directly on the headphones.

The N60 NC have decent latency for Bluetooth headphones. Most of them average around 200-220ms of delay, so you might not notice the delay as much on the AKGs. They also support the aptX codec, which slightly reduces their latency. Also, certain apps and devices offer somewhat of a compensation, so you might not even notice the delay at all.

0
Connectivity
Non-Bluetooth Wireless
Non-BT Line of Sight Range
N/A
Non-BT Latency
N/A
9.5
Connectivity
Wired
Analog Audio
Yes
USB Audio
No
Detachable Yes
Length 4.2 ft
Connection 1/8" TRRS
Wired Latency
0 ms

These wireless headphones can also be used with the included 1/8” TRRS audio cable on consoles. You will get audio and microphone support on all consoles and PCs, which makes them very versatile.

Connectivity
PC / PS4 Compatibility
PC / PS4 Analog
Audio + Microphone
PC / PS4 Wired USB
No
PC / PS4 Non-BT Wireless
No
Connectivity
Xbox One Compatibility
Xbox One Analog
Audio + Microphone
Xbox One Wired USB
No
Xbox One Wireless
No
0
Connectivity
Base/Dock
Type
N/A
USB Input
N/A
Line In
N/A
Line Out
N/A
Optical Input
N/A
RCA Input
N/A
Dock Charging
N/A
Power Supply
N/A

The AKG N60NC do not have a base/dock. If you want a versatile headset with a base that you can also use wired, check out the SteelSeries Arctis 7 or the Astro A50.

Compared to other headphones

Comparison picture

The AKG N60NC are decent mixed usage on-ear headphones that set themselves apart due to their good ANC feature that blocks ambient noise. They have an above-average sound profile but are outperformed by similar on-ears in that category. If you’re looking for the best picks, see our recommendations for the best on-ear headphones and the best wireless headphones.

Marshall MID ANC Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

If sound quality and comfort are the most important criteria for you, the Marshall MID ANC are better headphones than the AKG N60NC Wireless. They have great audio reproduction, and their control scheme offers great feedback and is easy to use. They are also slightly better built and feel like more premium headphones than the AKGs. On the other hand, the N60NC have a better noise cancelling performance and can also connect to two devices simultaneously.

Bose QuietComfort 35/QC35 Wireless 2016
SEE PRICE
B&H

The Bose QuietComfort 35 are better headphones than the AKG N60NC Wireless. These are over-ears and are one of the most comfortable headphones we’ve tested. They also have a more neutral-sounding audio reproduction and are well-built headphones. Their isolation performance is also better suited for loud environments. You’ll also get a few more hours of continuous playback. On the other hand, the AKGs have better wireless range and trap less heat inside your ears after long periods of time. You’ll also be able to use their microphone when wired to PCs and consoles, which the Bose can’t do.

Bose SoundLink On-Ear Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Bose SoundLink On-Ear would be better headphones than the AKG N60NC Wireless if you care about comfort and sound quality the most. They have a more neutral sounding audio reproduction, the earcups feel more lightweight, and the padding is softer. They also have a great 21-hour battery life and can also connect to two devices, like the AKGs. The N60NC have the edge in the isolation performance and will block more ambient noise, making them a better choice if you’re looking for headphones to use while commuting every day.

Sony WH-XB700 Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The AKG N60NC Wireless are better on-ear headphones than the Sony WH-XB700. They are noise cancelling on-ears and they have a better audio reproduction than the Sony headphones as well. They also feel better built, can connect simultaneously to two devices, and their latency is noticeably lower. On the other hand, you get a better battery life with the WH-XB700, although they do take longer to charge. Also, they have a decent app, which the AKG are lacking.

Beats Solo3 Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Beats Solo3 Wireless are better sounding and better-built headphones than the AKG N60NC Wireless. However, the AKG isolate more ambient noise due to their ANC feature, which makes them a bit more versatile, especially for commuting and for the office. They can also connect to two devices simultaneously, which is convenient. On the other hand, the Beats have an amazing 42-hour battery life, which is about 3 times longer than the AKG’s.

Beats Solo Pro Wireless
SEE PRICE
B&H

The Beats Solo Pro Wireless are slightly better headphones than the AKG N60NC Wireless. They feel noticeably better-built and have a better control scheme. Their ANC features are both great, but the sound quality of the Beats is a bit more neutral while the AKG can sound a bit sharp.

+ Show more

AKG N60NC Wireless Price

N60NC Wireless
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

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