So I did promise a review of the A900. I also said I wasn’t going to do a long one.
If you’re looking for, for want a better word, a closed Grado, these may be for you. They can be a trifle shrill at times but it’s usually a good shrill
Or its maybe because these aren’t broken in, although I have heard this with previous ATH-AXX phones.
So what should you expect? Even out of any of my portables (Sharp MD-MT888, Sony MZ-N707 mnidiscs) without an amplifier you can expect pretty good results. Out of a decent amp, there’s the ‘slam bass’ that most people associate with the midrange Grados although perhaps the A900 can be a bit fatter, the brushy treble (you know what I mean I hope) once again a Grado thingy, and clear reproduction throughout the audible range. The combination really brings out the groove in dance tracks, but I’m not sure it’s a good vocal phone, especially if for example things like Celine Dion’s your thing, it’s probably a bit sharp for that. As far as fidelity goes, it’s accurate enough without being pedantic. They seal really well, and don’t leak.
The ATH-A900 is cheap (a bit over 20,000 yen typically), feel very comfy and sound pretty good. I may look like a total berk on the train, but I’m going to use these outside a lot, although the folding MDR-7509 will still get a lot of use. As an all-purpose phone, I give them a big thumbs up.