We visited the Audio-Technica booth at IFA 2017 in Berlin to see what they have in store for audiophiles for this year and perhaps, you’ll be as impressed as us – you may want to get your wish list ready for Christmas and credit cards ready.
Audio-Technica In-ear Range
Following on from the recently renewed CKR in-ear wired headphone range, Audio-Technica is introducing three wireless Bluetooth models to the line-up – the ATH-CKR75BT, ATH-CKR55BT and ATH-CKR35BT. Retaining the CKR series’ signature natural sound, this trio covers all sonic bases and budgets from entry-level, mid-range and premium, so all music-fans can experience high-quality audio on the go without the clutter of wires.
Heading the new Bluetooth in-ear series is the premium ATH-CKR75BT. Boasting 11.8mm drivers for crystal clear and precise audio reproduction, the sound is further enhanced by the headphone’s machined aluminium housing. Robust but lightweight this material helps reduce internal vibrations that can negatively affect the audio performance. This flagship model comes in an eye-catching gun metal finish.
At the mid-range level, the ATH-CKR55BT’s lightweight in-ear profile enables strong noise isolation – ideal when listening in loud environments. Elsewhere, its 10.7mm drivers sport brass stabilisers that minimise unwanted internal resonance that can taint the sound, providing clean and accurate audio.
Arriving in a choice of black or silver finishes, the stylish entry-level ATH-CKR35BT is the range’s lightest wireless design with its 9.8mm drivers delivering clear mid and high frequencies for a dynamic audio performance.
The headphone trio feature Bluetooth version 4.1 with the ATH-CKR75BT and ATH-CKR55BT supporting aptX and AAC codecs (the ATH-CKR35BT is AAC only) for a stable, clear and top quality wireless transmission.
All models boast a seven-hour battery life, ample for the daily commute, international flights and beyond, with charging via USB. An inline mic smartphone remote allows easy control of music and calls when on-the-move, while a cable clip can be attached to clothes for a secure, discreet fit. The new line-up also comes with a carry pouch for easy and safe storage, keeping the headphones in top condition when in transit.
The three products will be out in October 2017 with the Audio-Technica ATH-CKR75BT priced £149, the ATH-CKR55BT priced at £89 and the ATH-CKR35BT priced at £55.
Audio-Technica ATH-ADX5000 audiophile reference headphones
Combining Japanese craftsmanship and leading-edge audio engineering, Audio-Technica’s new ATH-ADX5000 open-back headphones represent a new reference in home audio listening. The flagship model in the acclaimed AD (Air Dynamic) series, these over-ear headphones enable audiophiles to experience faithful reproduction of their favourite music as the artist intended.
Meticulously designed and built from the ground-up, the ATH-ADX5000 feature newly developed core mount technology, enlarged 58mm integrated driver units and tungsten-coated diaphragms, all enclosed in a striking honeycomb punched design. Each headphone housing is carefully hand assembled in Tokyo, Japan with units individually identified by a laser etched serial number.
New core mount technology has been developed to optimise the position of the driver within the housing. This clever design improves airflow efficiency that enhances the transparency of the mid to high frequencies while producing a rich, precise bass sound.
At the heart of the ATH-ADX5000 is the unique integrated driver design. The diaphragm voice coil, baffle and the magnet is all housed in the same unit to minimise unwanted vibrations that can colour the sound. The design also allows for the removal of screw clamps to reduce weight, while the baffle is made of highly rigid Polyphenylene Sulfide and glass fibre to enable the stable movement of the diaphragm and a more precise audio.
Chosen for its high rigidity, the large 58mm driver boasts a Permendur Magnetic Circuit Tungsten coated diaphragm. This newly treated diaphragm improves response and timing for a more accurate audio performance while its lightweight construction helps to avoid internal power loss.
The honeycomb punched housing structure is not just eye-catching but its efficient design, combined with closed-sides to reduce side ventilation, contributes to eliminating any air pressure loss in order to maintain balanced fidelity. To further enhance the sound a high-grade 6N-OFC oxygen-free copper cable with a machined stainless steel 6.3mm plug reduces unwanted resonance for authentic sonic reproduction.
Comfort during long listening sessions is always a priority with home hi-fi headphones so the ATH-ADX5000’s earpads and headband are wrapped in Alcantara. Widely used in the automotive and fashion industries, this material offers durability and high quality but a soft texture for added comfort. Elsewhere, the lightweight but rigid magnesium frame contribute to a secure but relaxed fit.
To keep these reference headphones in perfect condition at home and in transit, a protective luxury carry case is supplied. The Audio-Technica ATH-ADX5000 will be available in November 2017, priced £1,990.
Audio-Technica’s new ATH-AR5BT premium wireless headphones
Audio-Technica’s new premium wireless Bluetooth headphones, the ATH-AR5BT, combine a sleek, lightweight and ultra-portable design with a stunning audio performance so music fans can enjoy their favourite tunes on-the-move, in total comfort and without the tangle of wires. Opt for a wired connection and this over-ear model supports the playback of hi-res audio.
Engineered from the ground-up, the dynamic 45mm drivers deliver high-quality CD-like sound over a wireless connection from a Bluetooth-enabled smartphone, tablet, laptop or audio device. The drivers are also specially-tuned for music lovers wanting to experience the detailed sounds of hi-res audio via a compatible smartphone or portable music player.
Boasting up to 30 hours battery life for continuous music playback from a single charge, the ATH-AR5BTs are set-up to enjoy music for longer, without the need to constantly worry about battery status. When power is low, a USB cable is supplied for recharging or alternatively, users can connect the supplied detachable cable to go wired and keep the music playing.
For long listening sessions, comfort is a priority with the soft memory foam ear cups and headband, featuring an adjustable slider, combining to deliver a secure but relaxed fit. Elsewhere, the over-ear design enables effective sound isolation for a more immersive listening experience.
Arriving in three stylish and eye-catching colours – red, black and silver – these headphones sport an elegantly curved profile and a premium metallic finish. Whether on a daily commute or globe-trotting, the ATH-AR5BT’s foldable, lightweight design is geared for easy storage in a bag or large coat pocket when travelling.
Supporting Bluetooth 4.1 aptX, AAC, SBC codecs for the wireless streaming of audio, the ATH-AR5BT features NFC (Near Field Communication) for easy one-touch pairing with Bluetooth-enabled devices. For easy access and control of Bluetooth devices on-the-go, a volume and mic switch is conveniently integrated into the ear cup.
The ATH-AR5BT also comes equipped with a 1.2-metre smartphone cable complete with inline remote and a carry pouch for keeping the headphones immaculate in transit. The Audio-Technica ATH-AR5BT will be available in November 2017, priced £169.