When you are an audiophile looking for the greatest audio accessories ever, seeing astronomical prices penetrating the $1,000 barrier shouldn’t be much of a surprise. Companies like AKG make pairs of headphones that cost $1,500. Listening to how these headphones sound is a different story and it becomes very apparent why these pairs of headphones are priced that way. True-to-life audio quality, amazing craftsmanship and luxurious design are the main characteristics of high-end headphones. AKG is also one of the few companies that make highly expensive earphones. While the $999 price tag doesn’t make the AKG K3003i the most expensive AKG gear, it still competes against a handful of other premium pairs of earphones and decisively beats all pairs of in-ear headphones that are slightly more affordable.

AKG K3003i

AKG K3003i

About the AKG K3003i

The AKG K3003i is the company’s first reference sound in-ear headphones. The press photos of the AKG K3003i don’t do the earphones justice. It is really how the earphones feel that really helps justify the price at least for the most part. In terms of craftsmanship, the AKG K3003i is in its own league. Made from a single piece of stainless steel, these tiny buds look gorgeous and feel very well made. On top of that, steel is a lot tougher than aluminum and it has that kind of weight that makes the AKG K3003i feel right at home.


That feel good weight really makes the AKG K3003i feel comfortable although your mileage will vary depending on your ears and the included rubber tips may not give you the perfect fit. Some users would try sleeves from other earphones to get the perfect results. The best way to check for the perfect fit is to pay attention to the bass.


While the AKG K3003i is still pretty light, it probably won’t be the kind of earphones you’d want to walk outside with for obvious reasons. In fact, AKG could have done a better job here. Yes, the package does include a very nice leather carrying case which protects the earphones but it doesn’t have a detachable cable which means you have to be extra careful when handling the AKG K3003i.


The audio quality of the AKG K3003i isn’t just amazing, it is completely customizable. Three filters are included in the package so you have extra physical control on how the sound comes out. This is like an advanced approach to equalizers although most audiophiles should be contented with the reference filter. You screw the filter on to the nozzle of the earpiece and you are good to go. Playing back 24-bit FLAC files never sounded so good. But if you need some extra bass or maybe a boost of treble, you can try the Bass Boost or Treble Boost filters. The only catch is that you may not even experience the very best that the three drivers within the AKG K3003i has to offer. Plugging it in directly to your iPhone isn’t enough even though the earphones is made for the iPhone. Plugging it into an amp really makes the AKG K3003i shine.


The AKG K3003i is a near-perfect pair of earphones that really should have a detachable cable because these earphones are just begging to be shown off and it is virtually impossible to consider something cheaper once you listened to music with the AKG K3003i.