Audio Technica Ath W100 - review
* Release date: December 1st, 1999
* Release price: ￥ 44,100 ($400USD)
* 3000 units
1999 ... ATH-W100
"This product is made of magnesium frame, which is considered as an advanced model by providing a lighter but more improved sound.
The space behind the diaphragm was made wider, and the resonance frequency was reduced, resulting in better sound reproduction."
Model closed dynamic type
Vibrator 53㎜ Super high-class OFC8N bobbin wound voice coil
Reproduction frequency band 5-30,000Hz
Allowable input 2,000mW
Sensitivity 100dB / mW
Code 3.0m Silk 100% Sheath PCOC stereo plug
Weight 320g (excluding cord)
Remarks Hokkaido solid Asada cherry wood is used for the housing
This is the 4th Audio-Technica woodie headphone release in 1999. It was the last 90s woodie headphone. This model is a non-limited, mass-produced woodie. An estimate of around 3000 units created. Because it was mass-produced, do not underestimate this headphone. This headphone supposedly fixed everything that was wrong with the other 3. But did it?
Let us see what they have gotten right or wrong in 3+ years in the woodie business.
They changed up the build a bit. The outer wood frame ring is a magnesium alloy instead of a plastic fat frame from the first three headphones, but the hinges and wings are made out of plastic. That is a shame.
The wordings are blacked inked like the W10LTD headphones: the same ink and stylish lettering technique.
The wood shape is more oval, dome shape. Completely different from the first three models.
The headphone jack is again permanently a 1/4 jack. From now onwards the jack will always be a permanent 1/4 jack. The end is wooden with a scribe of the model number in black ink.
The earpads are made out of synthetic leather.
The 3D wing is similar to the W11JPN but uses a lower fabric quality.
The cables went back to the W10VTG and W10LTD style? Maybe they realize that the W11JPN is one of the worst cables. Or they went the cheap route for this mass-produced woodie? Most likely, the latter is the answer. I 100% prefer this cable over the nonsense of the W11JPN cable.
This is the first time the Left and Right is painted on the hinges of the headphone band.
They are painted on!
This means it can be rubbed off. They removed the beauty of the embedded left and right pieces. I do not like this
The drivers are again angle. This is the way of the woodies.
So here we go again the W100 sounds the opposite of it last reiteration completely, but this sounds very close to the W10LTD.
This headphone can easily be described as balance, neutral, and bright on top with a bit of sparkle. Because of its sparkle, it can be upbeat, punchy sounding headphones. The mids, again, like all woodies are the highlight. This should not be to anyone's surprise. We on the 4th review, and its the same mid-story of being world-class. You know, full, rich, marvelous, Yada Yada....
This is more of a neutral headphone. But of course still a color headphone. The treble is still tame, the mids are boosted and very clear with warmth. There is bass. But not overwhelming, just enough. More of a controlled bass.
I notice that the treble on my W10LTD is tamer and more relax than W100. The W100 is more exciting and punchy and sparkly than the W10LTD. There is no thinness, I notice. The only way you can say this headphone is thin is to come from a W10VTG or W11JPN because those two headphones are thick and juicy like a Delicious Mango.
Compare to the laid back W11JPN. This headphone is fast, punchy, and more open than the W11JPN. The W100 can easily be said that it is a superior headphone to the rest of the pairs because it has that modern balance signature.
Now, do I prefer this over the other three? No way. The beautiful sound of the W11jpn is unmatched so far. The W10ltd is technically better than all the woodies, and the crazy unnatural W10VTG is Legendary. Because of this, the W100 is again another excellent addition to all things woodie!
In conclusion, this headphone was the hardest to rank because I think it is ranked the highest overall! But with a caveat, of course. I already wrote on another post on top that if you get the one with the crappy revision driver, then this is the worst headphones. However, guess I lucked out and got the best version out of the bunch, and because of this, I will rank it as such.
Ranking: 9.3 /10
The Legend continues....
"May the woodie be with you."