Originally Posted by madbull
Hi AT people
I'm quite a newbie in the headphone world, but this far I managed to gather some good cans. Been havin plenty of joy with Beyer DT880 250 Ohms and Denon D7000. I have a few iems too, Westone 4, UE TF10, ER4S... but I decided I'm a full sized kind of head-fier
Never heard an Audio Technica though
So, as I'm getting new amps (an already ordered DNA Stratus and some solid state I'm still choosing), I wanna get also a AT can... I want one that can sumarize Audio Technica sound, if such exists and I think it does... I'm thinking of a woodie, but I can't make up my mind. I been thinking of W5000... maybe a W3000. Or should I go open? Sound leaking is not an issue... and I love AD2000 looks... Please help me choose!
Thanks in advance!
Hello madbull. Really, it depends on what you're looking for, as I personally don't think there's a true "house sound" with Audio-Technica; their product lines are so diverse (among the largest of any headphone manufacturer), you could get a variety of sound signatures.
The W series of woodies is generally a bit lighter in bass presence, with a more emphasized top end and very colored and lush midrange. It's the sort of signature that lends itself to vocals and acoustic instruments. I say 'generally' though, because some models like the W1000X and W11JPN have more emphasized bass.
If you want to hear what the W series is all about, then I'd suggest the W3000ANV if you can afford it (priced around $1000-$1300). Since it's their anniversary model, it represents a summation of all their past models in a way. Its sound is the closest they've come to perfecting their engineering vision for the W series. The construction also borrows different bits and pieces from past models.
The W5000 is also a pretty nice headphone in my opinion, and I think it's underrated here. To my ears (and the ears of some others I've spoken with) they actually sound more similar to the W3000ANV than dissimilar. Others will say they're very different, but I don't personally agree. One issue is that the fit for the W5000 is notoriously problematic, so it may require you to bend the headband slightly to get the cups to seat flush to your face. The W3000ANV may also require this. In any case, poor fit seems to contribute to some of the negative impressions regarding the W5000 relative to the W3000ANV. There are differences between the two: the W5000 has an airier and less weighty sound, and the top end is perhaps a little bit brighter.
I'd also whole heartedly recommend the ESW9 portable headphones. They are much less expensive and are a great choice for a first pair of Audio-Technica headphones, assuming you don't mind that they sit on-ear rather than over-ear (circumaural). They're portable, easy to store, attractive, and their sound is quite good in my opinion. I have a theory that Audio-Technica tuned them to be more like the now-discontinued ESW10JPN over time.