Audio-Technica ATH-CKN70 In-ear headphones - Black

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Member of the Trade: Lachlanlikesathing
Pros: Comfortable, stable fit. Dynamic, warm but aggressive sound, very fast
Cons: Terrible noisy and cheap feeling cable, terrible included tips, highs shrill / raw
Along with the summary below, I have posted a Youtube video review of the ATH-CKN70. If you like the video, check out my channel for more reviews :)

The build on the CKN70 body is quite nice, with a lightweight plastic / aluminium body, though not as good as the similar (in price and concept) JVC FXD80-Z. The rubber earloop mechanism does help to stabilise the IEM in the outer ear and makes the CKN70 quite comfortable despite the quite wide nozzle of the earphone. The J-Cable cable is of a very poor quality; it is has a papery feel to it and retains memory very strongly. It is also extremely microphonic (perhaps the most microphonic able I have ever tried) and the design of the IEM prevents over-ear wear. The included tips are also similarly made out of this papery cheap rubber and do not sound very good anyway.
With the included tips the CKN70 is very aggressive, with a very strong bass / mid-bass response that almost seems bloated or congested at times. The highs are also very harsh, with a metallic shimmer (though not necessarily an 'S' type sibilance) that I found quite fatiguing. The sound is however lightning quick, dynamic and punchy - though at times the high frequency grain causes soundstage definition to smear. WIth Sony hybrid foam tips, which I tried and preferred to the stock tips, the sound is tamed, with a warm tone and only a slight rawness in the highs. Experimentation with tips seems like a must.
The CKN70 has an exciting and fun sound, but honestly I cannot see why anyone would futz around with different tips and put up with the awful cable noise especially when something like the FXD80 offers a cleaner sound with stock tips and a better cable / build. I can't really recommend these.


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