Audio Technica ATH-A900X | Art Monitor Headphones (Japan Import)

General Information

Audio-Technica's ATH-A900x closed-back dynamic headphones deliver audiophile-quality acoustic performance with superior, deep bass and vocal projection unmatched in its class. The headphones feature large-aperture 53 mm drivers for high-fidelity playback. Equipped with A-T’s innovative self-adjusting wing support mechanism, the headphones offer long hours of remarkably comfortable listening.

Type: Closed-back Dynamic, Double Air Damping System
Driver Diameter: 53 mm
Frequency Response: 5 – 40,000 Hz
Maximum Input Power: 2,000 mW
Sensitivity: 100 dB/mW
Impedance: 42 ohms
Weight: 330 g
Cable: 3.0 m
Connector: 3.5 mm gold-plated stereo plug
Accessory Included: Detachable 1/4" (6.3 mm) adapter

Latest reviews


New Head-Fier
Pros: Great highs, punchy lows, surprisingly wide soundstage for closed cans, fits pretty much any head with the 'wings' and looks very stylish!
Cons: My ears are too big for the cups, others will likely have no issues with this. No detachable cable, which then makes me say the cable is too long.
My first review on a pair of cans and also the very first pair that introduced me into the Audiophile family!
I haven't used a hell of a lot of closed cans. They mostly comprise of a few 'gaming headsets' and my last ever headset which these replaced, the G4ME ZERO from Sennheiser. The only other pair of cans I have used that were closed back were the DT770's at a local shop on demo. Unfortunately, the DT770's were not hooked up to a good audio source so I can't really use them for comparison... What I can say though, is going from generic gaming headsets to standalone headphones was the best decision I have made in regards to anything to do with audio. Along with getting my hands on the A900X, I also got the Soundblaster Z and the Blue Yeti microphone to complete my setup. Listening to music on the A900X is a dream compared to the G4ME ZERO. The bass is more present and the highs are just crisp enough for my taste. Playing games as well is more pleasant with the extra bass and highs the A900X gave me. Bullets whizzing past my head and explosions going off right in front of me had me more immersed than I thought possible with stereo cans. And using the SBX Surround software that comes with the Soundblaster Z made these cans even more amazing in game, giving them a much wider soundstage!
To the negatives... The wing design is a little bit of an oddball. At first I thought it was fantastic! Didn't have to adjust when someone else wanted to use them. Just put 'em on and away you go! Over 9 months of use, lots of use, the springs that are used for the 'wings' have slightly weakened, thus they don't have quite the same amount of support as they once did. So now the tops of the earcups tend to slide ever so slowly down to rest on the tops of my ears, which after hours of use tends to hurt and needs repositioning. This could be because I do have a fairly large head and they are stretching more than if I had a medium sized head, but every now and then I would have to re-adjust. Speaking of re-adjusting, going from the Sennheiser G4ME ZERO which has amazing comfort with wide, deep cans to something that has more clamping force and shallow pads, took my ears over 3 weeks to get used to! I would have to take them off after 2 hours to let my ears breathe and massage them. It probably doesn't help that I have large ears, but after a months use, my ears didn't hurt anymore! They didn't hurt, but were annoyed by the shallow earcups. Constant adjustments are needed now to keep them in a position where they are comfortable. If the 'wing' design had more tension, had some other method of head support or the cans were a little lighter, this wouldn't occur.
This isn't much of a review, I apologise for this, but if you are looking to move away from headsets and get a really decent pair of headphones, I would definitely recommend looking into the ATH-A900X.
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New Head-Fier
Pros: If You've a Large Size head, Then These Will Fit Well. Outstanding Sound Clarity - Unquestionably Better Than the Popular ATHM50S. V Comfortable.
Cons: Definitely Avoid these if your head size is Medium or below. Due to Design, They will only fit you well if you head size is Large or Extra Large!
(1) This reviewer rates headphones relative to the price paid. 5 stars at £1000, in other words, will not be directly comparable with 5/5 at £100. Unless, that is, it's specifically stated to the contrary, my ratings are given strictly relative to other headphones in the item's approximately comparable price range, only.
Firstly, do not even consider buying these if your head size (or hat size) is anywhere less than 'Large'. Please take that as fair warning. Seriously, *if* your head is sized medium, they simply won't fit you; what's more, you'll (unjustly) feel like giving these one star, just like the female reviewer below, who (by her own admission) didn't even listen to them, before slating their design, with a one star review. With all respect, this reviewer feels that that was unfair. OTOH, Audio Technica really ought to do more to warn potential purchasers that these particular phones, are specifically designed for those with larger heads only. 'Nuff said.
LOOKS?: These cans are large, dark and somewhat imposing, so are for indoor use only, unless you enjoy being stared at... Still, their comparatively low impedance rating, means that they are easily driven by portable devices, as well as most anything else - even if you'd rather not venture outside while wearing these. Their cable is sufficiently long (at nearly 2 metres) yet is non-detachable. Nonetheless, it must also be said that they feature a very unorthodox clamping mechanism, which is not at all obvious when successfully worn - yet such very much makes wearing them all day, absolutely a joy. BTW, there is nothing complicated about wearing these phones - simply place them on your (large!) head, and voila!
COMFORT?  I've owned a lot of headphones in my life, and none have come even close to the comfort experienced, when wearing these. They have the most perfect fit on my head, with just the most exceptionally pleasing clasp, on one's ears. I've an extra large head, mind you, but they couldn't fit me more comfortably, which is just as well, as these are not designed to be adjusted. It's a case of one large size fits all large size heads and there you have it. But again - they couldn't fit more perfectly nor more pleasingly. They fit so very snugly, with such sublimely light pressure, yet never is there a danger (unless, that is, you intend exercising vigorously...) of their falling off your head. Wonderful!!
SOUND QUALITY?: Yes indeed, the 'meat 'n' two veg' of any headphones review - how do they sound? Well the easiest way of describing their sound quality, is to reminisce about how the ATH M50 sound, and then add a further pinch of sonic perfection. You've now arrived in ATHA900X territory. I now hear some of you think " these are just ATHM50S with 'go faster stripes'. Hmmm, I think I'll pass then" No sir/ma'm, the actual difference in SQ is unquestionably distinct. Rather that's because there is no question as to which of these phones exudes the greater detail and aural range:  those which feature the words 'Art Monitor'.
Sound is delivered with assured confidence throughout the aural range, with a strong, yet subtle emphasis on carefully balanced neutrality and clarity - which is, then again, to be expected, given that these are monitor grade phones. They are, accordingly, neither too 'trebley' nor too bass weary: moreover - they're as close to perfect as you'll find in, or anywhere near, their price range. Speaking of which, the most valuable headphones I own (Ultrasone Ed 8's), are also given an extremely impressive run for their money, by these Art Monitors. That's how excellent these sound. Sound staging is also lively enough to be perfectly engaging.
Notice in fact, just how muted is any criticism on their SQ, from anyone, as the vast majority of 'naysays' are from those whose heads do not wear well with these. So I must stress again the point made about head-size above. Otherwise, some headphones have varying degrees of sound quality; by contrast, these have sound which is quality.
VALUE? I paid in the mid hundreds for these over a year ago. Which, given both how extremely comfortable they are to wear for days on end (never-mind just hours!) plus their exceptionally engaging sound quality, their value cannot be faulted. They'd be cheap at double the price.
CONCLUSION: As we all know, Audio Technica do bad headphones in much the same way that Porsche do bad sportscars: They don't! However, good as all Audio Technica Phones are, there are still certain differences (sometimes subtle, sometime marked) between their offerings. However, in this instance, you'd be hard pressed to find better sounding nor more comfortable Phones, from any brand, anywhere near this price range. I know because I've tried.
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Well, I have a small head. These are the most comfortable headphones I own. No modifications either, they are like heaven. I've owned them for over 5 years with no issues. One of my favorite headphones. Love the sound, comfort, good stuff Audio Technica!


New Head-Fier
Pros: Amazing sound quality for the price. Extremely comfortable.
Cons: "Wing" design system. Very long cable.
Hello everybody!
So just like last time im gonna start with where to buy these headphones. They can be bought for $160usd and a whooping $326cad on and respectively. I didn’t buy these from any of those sites though. I bought mine off of Kijiji, Canada’s Craigslist, for a mere $100cad. Id highly recommend looking to find a nice used pair of these headphones on Kijiji, Craigslist, or whatever used classified site you know. Thankfully my pair was in near perfect condition. Even the box was mint. Speaking of the box, lets get on to the packaging.
So these bad boys come in a standard black box with a little flap with a window to reveal the headphones themselves. As we open the packaging the little plastic mount is easily the worst packaging material ive ever seen… Im not gonna lie, the unboxing experience is pretty lackluster with this pair of cans. They come with a single accessory being a 3.5mm to quarter inch adapter.
The design of these headphones are nice, but personally not my style. Ive never been a fan of the “tubes over the top” design aesthetic, but that's just me. One other thing that you may not like is the winged headband design. These wings can either be a huge deal breaker with these headphones. The wings may provide too little support for people with smaller heads, so make sure to try on these headphones before buying if possible. I had no problems with the wings as I have a fairly large head. I wouldn’t recommend doing any working out with these either due to the little support of the wings. Also wearing these around your neck will probably be almost impossible. On the positive side these headphones are nicely designed in almost all other aspects. The winged design does give it a very nice cloud like feel on your head, not to much clamping force, yet not too little clamp. Its id say perfect clampiness. They seem to be quite sturdy and can probably take a few drops to the floor if necessary. 
The metal housing of the earcups make these feel high quality. On the flipside of the earcups we are greeted to very circular pleather earcup cushions. Personally I really don’t care too much that they are pleather but your opinion will vary. Also note that the earcups are a circle and not an oval, so far I haven’t had any problems with this as the earcups themselves are quite large so they fit my ears fine. The cable is actually very aesthetically pleasing for a cable, I love braided cables and this one is very nice. On the downside it isn’t removable and very, very long. In total it's a whooping 3 metres long. I’ve tied mine with an elastic band and a velcro strap.
Now the real reason I bought these headphones, the sound quality. First of all these headphones are the best things to happen to my ears, ever.

-The highs are absolutely amazing, not too sharp and sounding detailed.

-The Mids are warm and engaging, both male and female vocals sound phenomenal. In most songs you can always hear the vocals bouncing off the walls and echoing ever so slightly, and it sounds amazing.   

-The lows are also great, the bass is tamed and not overwhelming. If you want boomy bass that rattles your skull, these simply aren't for you.
Continuing on with sound quality the instrument separation is fantastic, you can always pick out the different instruments quite easily on almost all tracks. This is also due to the amazing soundstage of these headphones. In the past i never even considered the mastering of audio until these headphones. In well mastered songs the audio sounds even better, my favorite example of this is the beginning of Bastille’s Tuning Out where the sound goes from left to right over and over again and its absolutely mind bendingly perfect. Another example would be Daft Punk’s Random Access Memories which is just so beautifully mastered and these headphones really let you experience the album.
These headphones aren’t a “fun” headphone per say, they are more of a relaxing headphone that you listen to with your eyes closed and just get lost in music.

Moving away from the music side of things these headphones also sound amazing for video games, movies, and anything really. In games the huge soundstage of these really give you an advantage, footsteps are very easy to hear and locate. Potentially giving you an advantage.
In conclusion these headphones are a fantastic buy, take a look in your local classifieds for a pair and pick them up if you can. The sound quality of these easily outclass everything in the $100-$200 price range, and finding them for somewhere in that price range isn’t hard. Last thing im gonna say about these is that if you can find a pair in good condition for no more than a max of $160 do your ears a favor and pick them up. Trust me, you won't be disappointed.
Just a quick message for all you done the review! 
Thanks for reading :) If you enjoyed this review please check out my YouTube channel and website!
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