Gone is the day when headphones could be respectable without some kind of corporate tie-in or Lady Gaga endorsement. Alas, even Harman's revered AKG division has roped in the venerable Quincy Jones for its new (wait for it) Quincy Jones Signature Line. We're talking three models here, ready for launch in October and ranging from the Q 701 "reference class" over-the-ear cans (pictured), the Q 460 lightweight headphones, and Q 350 buds. The Q 701 features ergonomically-shaped cushions of velvet, an "unbeatable" linear frequency response covering 10Hz to 39.8kHz, a 45-mm high excursion driver, and detachable 99-percent oxygen-free cables. The portable $229.99 Q 460 on-ear headphones feature a 3D-axis folding system and an iPhone compatible in-line remote with microphone and play, pause, and skip functions. The in-ear Q 350 also bring iPhone compatible and target the "audiophile on the go" with $149.99 to burn. Seems fitting for a man with 79 Grammy nominations (and 27 awards) to benefit from his name. And you can feel better about him selling out knowing that an undisclosed sum from every pair of headphones sold goes towards the Quincy Jones Musiq Consortium -- a foundation dediqated to eduqating Ameriqan kids about musiq. Ironic, because the Grammys might actually be relevant if American music corporations knew anything about good music.%Gallery-101028%
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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.
About Quincy Jones
A 27-time GRAMMY Award winner (who has received more of the awards than any other living musician) and the all-time most GRAMMY-nominated artist, with a total of 79 nominations, Quincy Jones's career has spanned six decades and encompassed the roles of composer, arranger, conductor, instrumentalist, record producer, record executive, film and television producer, magazine founder, multimedia entrepreneur and humanitarian.
As a master inventor of musical hybrids, Quincy Jones has shuffled pop, soul, hip-hop, jazz, gospel, blues, classical, African and Brazilian music into many dazzling fusions, traversing virtually every medium, including records, live performances, movies, television, broadcasting and magazine publishing.
Named by Time Magazine as one of the six most influential jazz artists of the 20th century, Jones won the first of his many GRAMMY awards in 1963 for his Count Basie arrangement of "I Can't Stop Loving You." His three-year musical association as conductor and arranger with Frank Sinatra in the mid-'60's also teamed him with Basie for the classic Sinatra at the Sands, containing the famous arrangement of "Fly Me to the Moon," the first recording played by astronaut Buzz Aldrin when he landed upon the moon's surface in 1969.
As producer and conductor of the historic "We Are the World" recording (the best-selling single of all time), Michael Jackson's multiplatinum solo albums Off the Wall, Bad and Thriller (the best-selling album of all time), and the multi-GRAMMY-winning Album of the Year Back on the Block, Quincy Jones stands as one of the most successful and admired creative artist/executives in the entertainment world.
HARMAN (www.harman.com) designs, manufactures and markets a wide range of audio and infotainment solutions for the automotive, consumer and professional markets – supported by 15 leading brands, including AKG, harman kardon, Infinity, JBL, Lexicon and Mark Levinson. The company is admired by audiophiles across multiple generations and supports leading professional entertainers and the venues where they perform. More than 20 million automobiles on the road today are equipped with HARMAN audio and infotainment systems. HARMAN has a workforce of about 11,000 people across the Americas, Europe and Asia, and reported sales of $3.4 billion for the fiscal year that ended June 30, 2010. The company's shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol NYSE:HAR.