AUDIO TECHNICA ATH AD700 HEADPHONES
Recommend this product?
There are many different types of headphones on the market today. They come in varying sizes, shapes, and styles. Some are designed for a specific use, such as for use in a recording studio, and some are designed for general use, such as for general listening to music at home. Prices can also vary from under $10 Dollars to shockingly expensive. Of course as a general rule, when you pay more, you will tend to get more. It is not hard to find a good sounding set of headphones when you are willing to pay a few hundred dollars or more. However it is a great challenge to find a great pair of headphones that is selling for under $100 Dollars. It takes a lot of shopping and comparison listening before you may find a pair of headphones in that lower price range that sounds really good to you. Today I shall be reviewing the Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones. Read on and see if these headphones have some of the features and sonic characteristics that you might be interesting in looking for in a pair of headphones.
The Audio-Technica ATH AD700 can be found selling for as low as $69.00 on sale, but if you want them for this price you must be patient and look for a sale, as some retailers are asking close to $100 Dollars for these very same headphones. The Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones are "Open Air" headphones. This means that the headphones allow sound to both escape from the headphones into the environment that you are in, as well as letting sound into the headphones from the environment, and thereby potentially interfering with your listening pleasure. Thus, open air headphones like the Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones would not be a good choice in a situation were there is loud noise in the environment, and they would not be a good choice to use in a home recording studio as well. Closed back headphones would be preferable for a recording situation. Closed back headphones have the advantage of being able to keep out the sound of the surrounding environment you are in. As such, they are good for listening to music in noisy environments. Closed back headphones are also desirable in a recording environment because they keep the sound of the background music in the headphones from leaking out and potentially corrupting the sound being recorded into a microphone a singer or musician might be using.
Open Air headphones, like the Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones, have the advantage of being very comfortable to wear, while many closed back headphones can seem confining and can become uncomfortable after prolonged listening. The Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones have over the head ear pads with padded ear cushions, and they feel quite comfortable. The headband is self-adjusting, and the casing is Aluminum and the frame is Magnesium. All in all, these headphones are very lightweight at just 10 ounces, and they are quite comfortable to wear.
The Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones have a frequency response of 5 Hz. to 30,000 Hz. The listed frequency response of a set of headphones describes the range of sound that can be reproduced without distortion under normal listening conditions. Keep in mind that the average healthy, young human can only hear sounds that range between 20 Hz. and 20,000 Hz. Headphones with a wider frequency response will lessen the likelihood of distortion, but they can not make you hear sounds that are beyond the range of normal human hearing.
The Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones have a sensitivity rating of 98dB and an impedance of 32 Ohms. That is actually quite reasonable for a set of headphones that are in this category. In general headphone sensitivity is measured by supplying 1 milliwatt of power to a set of phones and then measuring the number of dB in sound pressure level (SPL) that is delivered at the ear piece. The higher the sensitivity rating a set of headphones has, the better they will perform at different power levels, and the louder they are apt to be. All else being equal, the lower the impedance, the louder the sound will be in the headphones, because they are able to draw more power. In general, I must confess, I am not one for obsessing over the impedance or sensitivity of a set of headphones, I am much more concerned with the quality of the sound, as compared to the loudness of the sound, and these headphones sound quite good for a set of headphones in this price range. That being said, these are not what I would consider to be "loud" or very efficient headphones, and as such a person using them with an MP3 player or other portable listening device might not be overly pleased, especially if they like to blast their music. Of course, I do not recommend loud listening to any sound sources, as the consequences to one's hearing over the long term could be quite detrimental.
The Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones come with a cable that is 9 feet 10 inches in length. That means that you will have to be in fairly close proximity to the device that you are plugging them into, such as a home stereo system. These headphones come with a stereo mini plug as well as a convertible quarter inch adapter. Thus, it is easy to go from using these phones with a portable device such as an MP3 Player, to go to using them with your home audio receiver.
Now that I have described some of the aspects of the Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones, I would also like to discuss some of their other strengths and weaknesses. These headphones have an adjustable head strap that basically can fit just about anyone's head. They feel comfortable, and the ear cups seemed to fit nicely and comfortably, without feeling too snug or uncomfortable in any way. While I was wearing them and listening to music at a reasonable and comfortable level, the music sounded very wide, spacious, and open. However, I then turned on the T.V. to test out their ability to block out sounds from the environment. Just as might be expected from a pair of light open air headphones, the Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones did not do a good job at blocking out sounds from the environment. Further, when I asked the person I was with to try them on and listen to music, I was disappointed to find that enough sound leaked out of them to cause me to feel that they were completely unsuitable for consideration for recording purposes, as simply just too much sound was escaping.
As far as the sound quality goes, these headphones sounded surprisingly good to me. The highs were smooth and not harsh, the midrange frequencies were very solid, and the bass was appropriately balanced. The sound was not completely flat, although I could not say that it was overly sweetened either. The midrange appeared to be mildly exaggerated, but not overly so. With a little tweaking of the stereo tuner, it was fairly easy to get a nice full sounding bass, very good mids, and highs that were clear and not abrasive or harsh. However, I could not recommend these for any serious recording purposes because of the reasons that I described earlier. The points that I found most desirable about the Audio-Technica ATH AD700 were their overall comfort, and the wideness and spaciousness of the soundscape that they produced when listening to music.
The bottom line for me is that I like these phones for what they are. For under $75 Dollars, they are a better than average set of headphones, and they deliver relatively good sound quality, and good value for the money. I could feel comfortable in recommending them for casual music listening. I would not recommend them to a serious audiophile, but then again could any set of headphones selling for under $75 Dollars really please a serious audiophile? I also would have reservations with these headphones for recording purposes for the reasons that I mentioned earlier in the review. If one is one a tight budget, and looking for a reasonably good set of headphones for casual music listening enjoyment, the Audio-Technica ATH AD700 Headphones are a good buy.
Well I would like to thank you for taking the time to read my review, but now if you will excuse me, I must get back to my practicing.