In recognition of more than 60 years contribution to the art and science of music recording and performance, storied microphone and headphone innovator AKG was recently awarded a prestigious technical Grammy® award from the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (NARAS). The award, which was presented at Grammy Week in Los Angeles, represents an historic first in AKG's history of firsts — not simply in terms of technology innovations, but also in great recordings and performances.
From The Beatles' watershed performances in Shea Stadium in 1967 to Aerosmith, the Rolling Stones, Frank Sinatra, and today's most progressive and successful artists like Jay Z, Missy Elliot and Kayne West, AKG microphones and headphones have provided great sounding technologies to support the most demanding and creative projects.
AKG is in good company, with this year's only other GRAMMY Technical Award to be presented posthumously to Thomas Edison, inventor of the phonograph, early motion picture technologies, and the incandescent light bulb. Harman's JBL brand also earned a GRAMMY Technical Award in 2005, the first and only loudspeaker manufacturer to be so honored. Founded in 1947, AKG has been providing state-of-the-art microphones and headphones for a variety of live and recording applications.
"This year's honorees are a prestigious group of diverse and prominent creators who have contributed some of the most distinguished and influential recordings," said Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow. "Their outstanding accomplishments and passion for their craft have created a timeless legacy that has positively affected multiple generations, and will continue to influence generations to come. It is an honor and privilege to recognize such talented individuals who have had, and will continue to have, such an influence in both our culture and the music industry."
Commenting on the award, Blake Augsburger, President and Chief Executive Officer of Harman Professional, noted, “As the first technology on the recording signal chain, the quality and performance of the microphone has a critical impact on the sound and feel of a record. At AKG, we recognize that this fact places great responsibility on our shoulders to design and build microphones with the same commitment to innovation and attention to detail that artists put into their songwriting and performance. To be recognized by the global community of artists, writers, producers and engineers with this GRAMMY Award is extremely gratifying and while we are humbled and honored to receive this accolade, we are equally determined not to rest on our laurels and to innovate and excel further in the design and manufacture of great microphones and headphones.”
Echoing this sentiment, AKG President, Stefan Gubi noted, “Great sound does indeed start with the microphone and, I believe, especially with AKG microphones. The music world has changed considerably since AKG's inception more than 60 years ago, but the dedication of AKG's engineering and manufacturing teams and the preeminence of AKG microphones and headphones has been a constant. We are extremely pleased to receive this great honor and we are grateful to NARAS for this recognition.
This year, AKG continued it's tradition of innovation; introducing some of their most advanced microphones and headphones to date. With the release of the C 414 XLS and XL II, AKG introduced two of the most sensitive and versatile microphones available; with the Perception 120 USB, AKG gave users the ability to record studio-quality sound from their desktop and with the DMS 700, AKG presented their first digital wireless audio system.